Houston Texans vs. Cleveland Browns
Sunday, September 19, 2021 – 1:00 PM EDT at FirstEnergy Stadium
Both of these teams did the unexpected last week but had vastly different results. The Texans, the preseason favorites to go winless this season, put an end to that speculation as they not only defeated the re-tooled Jacksonville Jaguars but chewed them up and spit them out, to the tune of a 37-21 victory as 3 ½ point home underdogs.
Meanwhile, the Browns were in the throes of shocking the AFC powerhouse Kansas City Chiefs on the hallowed grounds of Arrowhead Stadium no less. But the Chiefs weren’t about to let that happen and roared back off the golden arm of Patrick Mahomes en route to a 33-29 victory over the game, but ultimately overmatched Browns.
The NFL odds on this matchup opened with Cleveland laying 12 ½ points at home against the lowly Texans but that number has been pounded into submission by the squares, to where it now stands as high as -14 (+112) in one spot. As we all know, getting a full two touchdowns can be critical and we are leaping over another crucial number – 13 – which means the difference is not simply 1 ½ point but it is going through one critical number and landing on another that can give us either a cover or a push.
I’m not sure the Texans are as bad as their preseason press clippings insist which is why I am going to grab the points; pay the juice it demands and hope the Browns might be a bit exhausted and dejected after leaving it all on the field and still getting beaten by the Chiefs last week.
NFL Pick: (visit ourSportsbook Review)
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Chicago Bears
Sunday, September 19, 2021 - 1:00 PM EDT at Soldier Field
The great unwashed masses are at it again. The Bears opened as 1-point home chalk but Joe Q. Public thinks he’s betting the ’85 edition and not the ’21 version we see before us, as the number has spiked to -3 at one respected shop. I mean, who are the Bears anyway? They lost by 20 points to the Rams last week and now they are laying a field goal?
Okay, so your argument is that it’s the Bengals coming to town and they’re not a very good team. Well, it just so happens the Cats have an excellent young quarterback in Joe Burrow, and the last time I checked they defeated the Vikings in overtime. If the books we're giving the Bengals a measly point, I’d pass this game but getting a full field goal over at makes this a value play that I will not ignore. Play the Cats and cash a ticket.
NFL Pick: (visit our Sportsbook Review)
Las Vegas Raiders vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Sunday, September 19, 2021 - 1:00 PM EDT at Heinz Field
The Raiders had one of the strangest wins you’ll see in this league when they defeated the Ravens in a Monday night overtime thriller. It seemed neither team wanted the W as both kept insisting to hold the door for the other.
Raiders: “No, after you, please.”
Ravens: “Oh no, I couldn’t dream of it, please after you.”
Raiders: “You are too kind but I must insist, after you.”
Ravens: “Well, if you…. I’m sorry, I simply can’t.”
Raiders: “If I must, but next time…”
That’s kind of the way it went but the Raiders are back in the ring to take another swing against a team that looked fated to lose last week but happened to be playing a team in the Bills that looked almost disinterested, manifesting in a 23-16 road win for Pittsburgh. And now the books are getting action on the Steelers in this Sunday afternoon matchup and the number has drifted from -5 ½ to as high as -7(+117).
Now I know these outliers can have a bit of juice attached, as in this case where we can get the Raiders +7 but we must pay -137 for the privilege, a full 27 cents above our standard vig. However, the value we are getting is worth it because the Steelers don’t strike me as a team that is going to score a ton of points while the Raiders like to air it out early and often which could catch the Pittsburgh secondary off-guard, or at least called for more than a few pass interference calls that will keep this game close. Grab the road pup here.
*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.