Handicapping Early Best Value NFL Picks for Week 8

Kevin Stott

Monday, October 26, 2015 7:56 PM UTC

Monday, Oct. 26, 2015 7:56 PM UTC

For the coming NFL week with updated SU and ATS records, major injury information, recent relevant trends, opening spreads & totals, and as always, some early week NFL picks.

Thursday, October 29, 2015


Miami Dolphins vs. New England Patriots -7½, 51 (Pinnacle) (CBS, NFL Network, 8:25 p.m. EDT/5:25 p.m. PDT): The Advanced Line here was (Patriots minus) -10½ while the Patriots opened 9½-point favorites in the NFL Games of the Year number out this Summer at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook her in Las Vegas, so you can see what the Dolphins big win over the lowly Houston Texans in Miami Gardens did on Sunday in the mind of Oddsmakers for this primetime AFC East meeting from Foxboro Stadium at Gillette Stadium between New England (6-0 SU, 3-1-2 ATS) and QB Tom Brady (70-48-5 ATS at Home) and the Miami Dolphins (3-3 SU, 3-3 ATS) on Thursday Night Football. When these two played last season, the Patriots won and covered as 9-point chalks in this game at Home, 41-13, while in Week 1 in Miami last year, the Dolphins upset New England, 33-20 as 3-point underdogs. The Trends here see the Patriots 3-0 ATS the L3 here in Foxboro (41-13, 27-17, 28-0) and with New England Head Coach Bill Belichick knowing the importance of Home-field advantage in the Postseason, expect a double-digit win and another big performance from the hosts and the NFL’s most reliable player, Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski (career-high 11 Receptions, 108 yards, TD) on Thursday evening. New England has scored the most points in the AFC (213) and has only allowed 126. The unbeaten Patriots are 3-3 ATS on Thursdays while the Dolphins are 3-4 ATS. Take the Pats with your NFL picks.

NFL Pick: Patriots -7½ at Pinnacle

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Sunday, November 1, 2015


Detroit Lions vs. Kansas City Chiefs -4, 46½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) Wembley Stadium, London England (Yahoo!, 9:30 a.m. EDT/6:30 a.m. PDT): The Kansas City Chiefs (2-5 SU, 2-5 ATS) and the Detroit Lions (1-6 SU, 1-6 ATS) meet at Wembley Stadium in London, England this Sunday in Week 8 in the third game of the 2015/16 NFL Regular Season to be played in Londontown and the second straight week of American professional Football action in the United Kingdom (Jacksonville beat the Bills on Sunday.) These two teams don’t play often, but the last time they met, the Chiefs rolled, 48-3 as 3-point underdogs in Detroit. Kansas City is 5-1 ATS in the L6 meetings, but this is a tough call with both teams being on the downswing and the neutral site. RB Jamaal Charles (Knee, Injured-Reserve List) is out for the season for Kansas City while WR Jeremy Maclin (Concussion) continues to heal, so this team is not even close to being 100% on Offense. Yet they’re favored here over the lowly Lions because Kansas City is playing better Defense than Detroit this year. The Chiefs opened up as 3½-point favorites in this game in the renowned Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook NFL Games of the Year so the combination of Kansas City’s Win over the Steelers and the Lions Loss to the Vikings on Sunday moved perceptions of what this number should be ½ point the Chiefs direction. This is a tough handicap and yet another crappy American Football export.


Minnesota Vikings -1½, 42½ vs. Chicago Bears (FOX, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The Minnesota Vikings (4-2 SU, 5-1 ATS) head to Soldier Field in Chicago this weekend to face the Chicago Bears (2-4 SU, 3-3 ATS) in this Week 8 contest. When these two met last season, the Vikings lost 21-13 in this game in Chitown as 2½-point underdogs while the Vikings won in Minneapolis, but failed to cover as 7-point chalks, 13-9. The Bears are 6-1 ATS L7 vs. Minnesota here at Home in the Windy City and the Bears are 8-3 ATS the L11 in this series. With QB Jay Cutler (22-42 ATS at Home) back, Chicago is much better and although improved, Minnesota is still just a middle-of-the-pack team and nothing to write home about and are historically a poor Road team. The Advanced Line here was Minnesota -2½ -120, so you can see a weird 1-point perception after the Vikings win over the Lions in Detroit Sunday and the Bears off week. Chicago and Cutler can definitely win this NFC North affair and will obviously be well-rested here.

NFL Pick: Bears +2 at Heritage

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs.Atlanta Falcons -7, 48½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) (FOX, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-4 SU, 3-3 ATS) head to the Georgia Dome to face the Atlanta Falcons (6-1 SU, 4-3 ATS) and QB Matt Ryan on Sunday in Atlanta in a big NFC South game for both teams. Last season, the Falcons won 56-14 in this game, easily covering as 7-point favorites while in the return leg in the Sunshine State, Atlanta won 27-17, again covering, this time as a 3-point favorite. The Falcons are 3-1 ATS the L4 vs. Tampa Bay and Atlanta is also 3-1 ATS the L4 here at Home against the Buccaneers. A big number and still unsure if first-year Head Coach Dan Quinn’s Dirty Birds v2.0 are the real deal. On Sunday, Tampa Bay lost a heartbreaker to the Redskins in Landover, Maryland in the closing seconds, 31-30, while the Falcons won 10-7 against the Titans in a slog in Nashville on Sunday. Another tough handicap and spot on accurate Point Spread. Pass.


New York Giants vs. New Orleans Saints -3½, 49½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) (FOX, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The Superdome in New Orleans is the site of the Week 8 game between the host New Orleans Saints (3-4 SU, 4-3 ATS) and QB Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. and the New York Giants (4-3 SU, 4-3 ATS). When these two last met, the G-Men clobbered the Saints, 52-27 as 4-point favorites in 2012 in East Rutherford while the last meeting here in The Big Easy, New Orleans and future Hall of Famer QB Drew Brees won, 49-24, covering as 7-point chalks in 2011. The Saints are 4-0 ATS the L4 here at the Superdome vs. New York NFC and New Orleans is 3-1 ATS the L4 overall in this NFC series. The Advanced Line here was Saints -2, so the combination of New Orleans very impressive Win over Indianapolis and the Giants struggle but Win over the Cowboys on Sunday has the Linemakers liking the Saints a little bit more than a couple of weeks ago. Having Brees back and settled in will do that as he and Head Coach Sean Payton aren’t the types to just give up around Week 4 or Week 5 of the Regular Season. Bet against the Saints at your own peril.


San Francisco 49ers vs. St. Louis Rams -7½, 39½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) (FOX, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The San Francisco 49ers (2-5 SU, 3-4 ATS) head to the Gateway City of St. Louis to break bread with the Rams (2-3 SU, 2-3 ATS; vs. Browns on Sunday) and Rookie RB Todd Gurley (Georgia) on Sunday afternoon in a big NFC West affair from the Midwestern city on the Mississippi River which gave us Budweiser beer and Nelly. Give my two pairs, I need two pairs. The last time these two played, the Rams won outright 13-10 as huge 10-point underdogs at the brand new Levi’s Stadium last season while in the game here in St. Louis last season, the 49ers won and covered ATS, 31-17 as 3-point favorites. San Francisco is 3-1 ATS the L4 overall against the Rams and Colin Kaepernick and the Niners—who will lose 2 Body Clock Hours traveling east from PDT to CDT— could very well go in to St. Louis and win this one. This was Rams -5 on the Advanced Line, so you can see how impressed Oddsmakers were with the Rams 24-6 win over the Cleveland Browns in St. Louis and how frightened they were with the 49ers bad performance against the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday Night Football in Santa Clara. Still, the Rams probably aren’t that good and San Francisco probably isn’t that bad, and opening solidly over the Key Number of 7 at 7½ almost everywhere may scare some potential Rams money off, but in such a (theoretically) low-scoring game (Total 39½), taking the 7½ with an embarrassed 49ers unit is the call.

NFL Pick: 49ers +7½ at 5Dimes

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Arizona Cardinals -4½, 47 vs. Cleveland Browns (FOX, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The upstart Arizona Cardinals (4-2 SU, 4-2 ATS) and QB Carson Palmer (37-33-3 ATS on Road) head east once again, this time to Cleveland and FirstEnergy Stadium to play the Browns (2-5 SU, 3-3-1 ATS) and Josh McCown in this suddenly surprisingly interesting inter-conference Week 8 matchup from the Buckeye State on Sunday afternoon which will be a big game for both sides. The last time these two met, the Cardinals won 20-17 as 6-point favorite in Glendale in 2011, while in the last meeting here in Cleveland, the Browns won 44-6 in 2003 easily covering ATS. After losing to the Steelers in Pittsburgh in Week 6, expect a better performance from QB Carson Palmer, WR Larry Fitzgerald, WR Michael Floyd and WR John Brown here in Ohio here in Week 8 although Arizona will be coming in off just 5 Days Rest (TWTFS) having played the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football in Week 7. Still, the Browns looked pretty stale in Sunday’s 24-6 gridiron curb-stomping by the Rams in St. Louis.

NFL Pick: Cardinals -4½ 

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Cincinnati Bengals vs. Pittsburgh Steelers No Line (CBS, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The undefeated (at this point, Week 7) Cincinnati Bengals (6-0 SU, 5-0-1 ATS) head to Heinz Field in Pittsburgh next Sunday to face the Steelers (4-3 SU, 4-1-2 ATS) in a huge this absolutely AFC North fracase and what should be an extremely entertaining game, and The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is reporting today (Monday) that Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin has said Pittsburgh starting QB Ben Roethlisberger (Sprained MCL, Bruised Tibia) will likely be back in the starting lineup for this game. But the Bengals and QB Andy Dalton (13-12 ATS on Road) will be well-rested, coming in off their Open Date and Cincinnati (182 PF-122 PA) is really good this season. Once Oddsmakers are indeed convinced Big Ben will start here, a Point Spread (and Total) should go up. A real must-watch affair from The Steel City.The Steelers are 3-0 ATS the L3 against Cincinnati overall and Pittsburgh is 4-1 ATS the L5 here at Heinz Field.


San Diego Chargers vs. Baltimore Ravens -3, 50½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) (CBS, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): QB Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers (2-5 SU, 2-5 ATS) head to M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore on Sunday afternoon to face the Ravens Ravens (1-5 SU, 0-5-1 ATS; at Cardinals on Monday Night Football in Week 7) and QB Joe Flacco (31-28-1 at Home) in this AFC inter-divisional tilt probably more important to the visiting Bolts with the Ravens pretty much already out of the picture with their miserable start. The last time these two played, the Chargers won 34-33 as 6-point underdogs last season in Baltimore, while the Ravens won 16-14 as 3-point underdogs in San Diego in 2011. Another tough handicap and the Advanced Line here had the Ravens installed as 2-point chalks, so San Diego’s embarrassing Loss to the Raiders in San Diego definitely affected perceptions. Heading into Monday’s night’s battle in Arizona, Baltimore (0-5-1 ATS) was the only one of the 32 teams in the NFL which hadn’t at least won its’ backers money one time.


Tennessee Titans vs. Houston Texans No Line (CBS, NFL RedZone, 1 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT): The availability of Tennessee Titans Rookie QB Marcus Mariota (Questionable, Knee) is the reason this Point Spread hasn’t been posted, but if the former University of Oregon star and Heisman Trophy winner can’t go, then Tennessee (1-5 SU, 3-3 ATS) backup Zach Mettenberger will be happy to step in and show there are still few decent backups in this league. Many great QBs in College Football but so few in the NFL. Here in Week 8 the Titans will be playing the Houston Texans (1-5 SU, 1-5 ATS) at Home at NRG Stadium in Houston on Sunday afternoon in a not-so-thrilling AFC South affair from the Lone Star State. Last year, the Texans beat the Titans, 30-16 as 3-point favorites in Nashville while Houston clobbered the Titans, 45-21 here in H-Town as 6-point chalks, easily covering ATS. The Texans are an impressive 7-1 ATS the L8 against Tennessee and 4-1 ATS the L5 here in Houston. Expect the Texans to be small, 1- to 2-point favorites when this number finally opens. This one appears to be more of a guessing game than a handicap and there are plenty of better betting options this week.


New York Jets -1, 44 vs. Oakland Raiders (CBS, NFL RedZone, 4:05 p.m. EDT/1:05 p.m. PDT): The New York Jets (4-2 SU; 5-1 ATS) and WR Brandon Marshall head out west to the O.co Coliseum in Oakland next Sunday to face the host Raiders (3-3 SU, 3-3 ATS) in an important inter-divisional AFC battle from the Golden State. Oakland should have a small advantage here with the Jets having to travel 3 Time Zones (EDT to PDT) westward and play the game at a physical kickoff time of 4:05 (p.m., EDT). When these two last met last season, the Raiders lost 19-14 but covered as 6½-point underdogs in Week 1 in at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey while in the last meeting here in Oaktown between the two, Oakland rolled to a 34-24 victory in 2011, winning outright as 3-point underdogs and winning money again for their Black and Silver betting backers. The Raiders are 3-1-1 ATS the L5 at Home here in Oakland vs. the Jets but these ain’t those Jets, Bubba. The Advanced Line was (Jets minus) -3 so you can see what the Oddsmakers thought of Oakland’s win over San Diego as well as what the Jets-Patriots result earlier in the day. New York is a better team and will be mad coming off the New England Loss. This one should be fun.

NFL Pick: Jets -1 at BetOnline

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Seattle Seahawks -5½, 40½ vs. Dallas Cowboys (FOX, 4:25 p.m. EDT/1:25 p.m. PDT): The slumping and injured Dallas Cowboys (2-5 SU, 1-5 ATS) welcome the defending NFC champion and slumping Seattle Seahawks (3-4 SU, 2-4-1 ATS) to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on Sunday afternoon for this Week 8 inter-divisional showdown from Big D. The last time QB Russell Wilson and the Seahawks played Dallas, the Cowboys and QB Tony Romo won and upset the Seahawks last season, 30-23 in Seattle as 10-point underdogs. The Cowboys may be going with third-stringer Matt Cassel (17/27, 227 yards TD) at QB, who started for the Cowboys at the New York Giants in their Week 7, 27-20 Loss on Sunday afternoon. Dallas is 6-2 ATS the L8 vs. Seattle overall and the Cowboys are 4-1 ATS the L5 at Home here in Arlington against the Seahawks. Dallas will still be without Romo (Collarbone, I-R List) but word is that Dallas may finally be getting WR Dez Bryant (Foot) back and they’ll need him for the slugfest. After losing to the Giants, this team can ill afford to make any more mistakes and a 2-6 SU record would be horrific, even in the paltry NFC East where even Bobby Jindal may have a chance. The Seahawks and RB Marshawn Lynch were 8½-point favorites in the NFL Games of the Year number out this Summer and the Advanced Line had Seattle as 5½-point favorites, although the Opener at the SuperBook tonight (Sunday) is 6. Imagine Matt Cassel going up against Seattle’s Legion of Doom secondary...

NFL Pick: Seahawks -5½ at Bovada

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Green Bay Packers -2½, 46 vs. Denver Broncos (NBC, 8:30 p.m. EDT/5:30 p.m. PDT): QB Aaron Rodgers (32-27 ATS on Road) and the Green Bay Packers (6-0 SU, 5-1 ATS; Open Date) and QB Peyton Manning (73-69-2 ATS at Home) and the Denver Broncos (6-0 SU, 4-1-1 ATS; Open Date) will both come into this Week 8 primetime showdown at Sports Authority Field in Denver on Sunday night well-rested, coming off their Bye weeks. The last time these two elite NFL teams met in 2011 at Lambeau Field, Green Bay romped to a 49-23 win, covering as healthy 12½-point favorites while the last time these two played in the Rocky Mountains, the Packers also won and covered ATS, 19-13 as 3-point underdogs in Denver in 2007. The Packers are 3-0 ATS the L3 against the Broncos, but with Denver’s Defense, the 5,280-feet Altitude and the Travel, this is is hard game to make a case for the Cheeseheads in but the measly 1-Hour Body Clock difference (CDT to MDT) ain’t no thang but a chicken wang. Green Bay sees the Patriots strutting their stuff in the AFC and needs to hold serve but like others may have some trouble playing in that Altitude for four quarters. Still, the Packers have a potent O while Manning and the Broncos O has struggled week-in and week-out and expecting the Denver D to save the day every Sunday just isn’t realistic. The Advanced Line here in Sin City was Green Bay -3 and the Packers were also installed as 3-point favorites in the NFL odds. This one is definitely must-watch stuff and will be heavily bet on but probably shouldn’t be. We’ll see the real Denver Broncos here and possibly a different side of the Green Bay Packers.

NFL Pick: Packers -2½ 

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Monday, November 2, 2015


Indianapolis Colts vs. Carolina Panthers -6½, 46 (Pinnacle) (ESPN, 8:30 p.m. EDT/5:30 p.m. PDT): QB Cam Newton (18-16-1 ATS at Home) and the Carolina Panthers (6-0 SU, 5-1 ATS) swing open the doors of Bank of America Stadium to QB Andrew Luck (14-13 ATS on Road) and the Indianapolis Colts (3-4 SU, 2-5 ATS) next Monday night (Week 8) in what should be a very entertaining affair from the Tar Heel State. In the last meeting between the two in this infrequent inter-conference series, the Panthers won 27-18 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis in 2011, covering as a 3-point favorite while the last time they met here at Bank of America Stadium, the Colts won 37-7 and easily covered ATS as 7-point favorites, so the Road teams have done great the L2. The Panthers are 4-1 ATS the L5 against the Colts and with TE Greg Olsen, RB James Stewart and WR Ted Ginn (13 receptions, 324 yards, 3 TDs), should have enough to keep Indianapolis off balance here and this game will be much more important to the Colts and much-maligned Head Coach Chuck Pagano than it will be for unbeaten Carolina. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lined this one at Panthers -2½ in its NFL Games of the Year and the Advanced Line was -3½ so you can see what the Colts Loss to the Saints combined with Carolina’s Win over the Panthers Sunday did to the spread—it raised it a full 3 points. The Panthers are 3-2 ATS on Monday Night Football as a Home Favorite while Indianapolis is 2-5 ATS as a Road Underdog under the bright spotlights on Monday nights.

NFL Week 8 Bye Week Teams: Buffalo Bills, Jacksonville Jaguars, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins

NFL Week 8 Opening Line Picks: Patriots -7½ , Bears +2 , 49ers +7½ , Cardinals -4½ , Jets -1 , Seahawks -5½ and Packers -2½ 

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