Place NFL Pick on Broncos -3 at Home Against Packers Sunday Night

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, October 28, 2015 1:27 PM GMT

Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015 1:27 PM GMT

It’s rare to find the Broncos as home dogs. So it is when the Broncos and Packers collide in week 8, all while putting their respective undefeated records on the line. Do the bookies have it right?

Green Bay Packers (6-0 SU, 2-0 SU away)
Hold the front page: Green Bay Packers are installed as road chalk at Mile High. Why are the Broncos and Peyton Manning not getting the respect they deserve when they are undefeated on the season?

Packers and Broncos collide in a highly anticipated clash of 6-0 SU teams, both coming off byes in week 7 NFL betting. One is going to fall out of the undefeated ranks in week 8 and it would seem the odds makers are tipping the Broncos to be the team to do so despite a stellar record at home that is beyond reproach.

More on the Broncos in a bit…

The Packers have carved out a 6-0 SU record on the season with a 10.5-point winning margin, which includes a 2-0 SU record on the road and an 11-point winning margin. Those stats are nothing to sniff at, which is partly responsible for their favoritism. However, going against it is a rather modest road record in recent seasons that, in no uncertain terms, suggests the Packers are a different team on the road. Looking at just 2014 and onwards, the Packers are 6-5 SU and ATS on the away with a 0.1-point losing margin.

So they are in no way a lock to come through as the road favorites trading at 3-to-3.5-points against the spread and the -160 favorites straight up.

Still, Aaron Rodgers is one of the league’s best passers and last season’s MVP. It can’t be said that he’s quite tapped into the form that saw him win the end of season honours yet, but he’s still high up there on the leaders board without the passing yards per se (18th with 249 yards per game, three rungs down the ladder from Peyton Manning (15th with 254 yards per game)) and doing it without some of his preferred targets in Jordy Nelson (out for season), Davante Adams and Ty Montgomery (both with various injuries). Rodgers is second in the league with a passer rating of 115.9. He has 15 TDs, second behind Tom Brady and Carson Palmer with 16, and just 2 INT in six games.

One reason why Rodgers hasn’t had to channel his super-self is the defense, which has held its own rather well and, to some extent, is underrated. They are 11th in the league in total defense, largely down to ranking 12th against the pass with 236.5 yards per game allowed. They are 22nd against the run with 118.5 yards per game allowed.

 

Denver Broncos (6-0 SU, 2-0 SU)
Denver Broncos may be undefeated on the season but it’s obvious odds makers aren’t sold on it. Why else send the Broncos into week 8’s highly anticipated clash with the Packers as the home underdogs, albeit small 3-point home underdogs against the spread and at +135 NFL odds to win straight up (or thereabouts depending on your choice sportsbook). Not to mention, doing so in the face of their solid home record that stands at 26-4 SU and a 13.1-point winning margin.

A lot has been said about Peyton Manning’s dramatically wanting numbers this season, which are so unlike the Future Hall of Famer that has NFL experts and pundits alike homing in on his age like a tomahawk missile. Granted Manning is 39 years of age and likely playing in his last season in the NFL, but the quarterback is a veteran and a constant student of the game. He’s working with a new offense, which takes time and adjustment. Importantly, though, the pressure on him to carry the team with his offensive prowess is removed by a stellar defense, the best he’s had in Denver ever since joining the team.

Defense wins games, so goes the maxim. If you subscribe to that notion, then the Broncos should practically leap off the page as the value NFL pick as the home underdogs. Broncos defense ranks first in total yards with 1688 yards allowed, first against the pass with 192.2 yards and fourth against the rush with 89.2 yards allowed.

NFL betting Verdict: Instinctively we are drawn to the big name quarterbacks when weighing in on this matchup, encouraged to compare them by their individual stats on the season and how they stack up against each other. Granted Peyton Manning is found wanting in several key categories, which makes Aaron Rodgers look like the smart choice to lead the Packers to victory. But football is a team sport not an individual sport, so it comes down to the sum total of these rosters and how these two teams stack up on Sunday at Mile High.

We’ve been all over both teams through their first six games and they’ve proved money for us on our NFL picks at the cash window. Now, we’re faced with the uncomfortable decision to pick one in favor of the other – it’s like picking between two favored sons. Eeek. A nigh impossible task to do with any conviction. The reality is that either side could win this game and nobody will be surprised either way. The quality, depth and proven credentials of both these outfits speak volumes. All that said, the Broncos are underdogs at home. That just never happens or almost never. So we can’t let that opportunity slip through without potentially cashing on it on our NFL picks.

NFL Picks: Broncos +3.0 (-110) at Bet365 & (+140) to win SU at 5Dimes

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