Free NFL Pick on the Total for Tonight's Giants vs. Redskins

Jason Lake

Thursday, September 25, 2014 1:28 PM GMT

Thursday football’s a hit with just about everyone – except the players. Washington’s defense is in no shape to be playing on short rest, especially with the New York Giants and their revamped offense coming to town. Take a look at which side of the Total holds the best value for our NFL picks.

Jason’s Record After Week 3: 6-13 ATS, 3-3-1 Totals

Profit: minus-13.6 units

 

This just in: Football players are not indestructible. Also, football pads and helmets don’t make you invulnerable. And while artificial turf might be painted a nice, welcoming shade of green, it’s only a glorified bath mat laid down on top of concrete. Football hurts. A lot.

Keep that in mind when you see Washington take the field this week. Somewhere underneath all the off-field controversy is a team that’s been playing some decent football at 1-2 SU and 2-1 ATS. But all that good work is threatening to come unglued; Washington’s defense, which started the season so well, has already been put through the shredder. What’s left of it will be trotted out on display Thursday night against the New York Giants, four days after their most recent beating.

Tough gig. Tougher than most people realize, which only cranks up the value you can find betting on NFL games like these. There’s a total of 45.5 points on the Week 4 NFL odds board as we go to press, same as where it was at Sunday’s open despite roughly 70 percent support for the 'over'. Make that 70 percent plus one.

 

Dislocated, Separated
So in its infinite wisdom, the NFL has decided to make Thursday Night Football a regular event, carving out a healthy slice of TV revenue from a medium that’s increasingly dependent on live programming. It’s not terribly healthy for the players, though. Six days between games is already not enough time to heal. Now we’re making it three. Sure, it’s only one week out of the season, and both Washington and New York will have an extended period to recover for Week 5. But that doesn’t make everything even-steven.

Don’t take our word for it, though. Just ask the players. Here’s a choice quote from LB Brian Orakpo (dislocated finger), who was one of 17 players on Washington’s injury report during Monday’s walk-through:

“Nobody in the league likes Thursday night games. I don’t know why they have them. It sucks for players, but it’s part of the game. We’ll be fine. It’s tough, but Thursday night games have been going on for a while. We don’t like them, coaches don’t like them. It’s a short week. You want to prepare and scheme as much as you can, but you can only do so much in limited time.”

 

No. 2: The Guards are Through
Orakpo will reportedly play against the Giants with a hard cast on his left hand, making him one of five injured players on the “probable” list for Thursday night (8:25 p.m. ET, CBS). He’d better suit up; there are still nine players considered “questionable” and another three who are definitely out, and among that Dirty Dozen are seven defenders, including four of their six linemen. That list doesn’t include players who have already been put on injured reserve, like CB DeAngelo Hall (torn Achilles).

Washington’s defense played well enough in the first two weeks to rank No. 1 on the efficiency charts at Football Outsiders. But the wheels started coming off in last week’s 37-34 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles (OVER 50.5), and things should only get worse as more and more players are carted off the field. It’s good timing for the Giants, who have gotten progressively better with their new West Coast offense as the season has unfolded. It’s also a rare opportunity for the G-Men to play someone even more beaten up than they are. That middling total could be blown out of the water by halftime. So take 1 unite on the total for tonight's NFL picks.

Free NFL Pick: Bet one unit on 'Over' 45.5 (–102) at Pinnacle Sports

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Check Out All of Our NFL Betting Coverage For Tonight's Game: 

Key Betting Trend Makes Redskins the NFL Pick Over Giants 

Thursday Night Prop Betting Picks for Giants vs. Redskins 

NFL Picks: Parlay Redskins -3 ½ & 'Under' 46 Thursday Night

NFL Picks for Giants vs. Redskins Based on Weak Washington D 

NFL Betting Guide for Giants-Redskins' NFC East Battle 

Thursday Night Football Opening Odds for Giants vs. Redskins 

Free NFL Pick: Bet 1.4 Units on Giants +3.5 vs. Redskins