Sharps NFL Picks Against The Spread - Washington Redskins vs. New York Giants

Jason Lake

Saturday, September 24, 2016 10:52 PM UTC

Saturday, Sep. 24, 2016 10:52 PM UTC

There's a lot of green on Big Blue this week. The New York Giants look like the sharp football pick for Sunday's home game against Washington, but the line's pretty tight.

Record: 5-2 ATS, 3-2 Totals
Have the New York Giants finally come back to life? They're one of just seven NFL teams to start the 2016 regular season at 2-0, which normally speaks well for their chances to make the playoffs. The Giants are also the overwhelming choice of sharp bettors for Sunday's matchup (1:00 p.m. ET) with Washington at the New Meadowlands. That's according to our expanded consensus reports, which at press time show the G-Men pulling in 91 percent of the action as 3.5-point faves on the NFL odds board, at an average bet size of $643.

Smidge Ure
This might be more of a bet against Washington (0-2 SU and ATS) then a vote of confidence for New York. The G-Men are 1-1 ATS after two games, winning close shaves against the Dallas Cowboys and the New Orleans Saints by a combined four points. Football Outsiders have the Giants ranked No. 20 overall in efficiency, and FiveThirtyEight give them just a 48-percent chance of making the playoffs. The league average for 2-0 teams over the past 20 years is 61 percent.

Again, though, it's Washington providing the opposition. Football Outsiders have the visitors four spots below New York on the efficiency charts, following losses at home to the Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers. So how do Sunday's projections look? FiveThirtyEight like the Giants to win 65 percent of the time, for an Elo-based point spread of –4. Just a smidge of betting value there.

Where the Near-Elite Meet and Greet
That smidge might not last. Some sportsbooks already have the Giants at –4, and they're bound to be the public team in this matchup; Washington is near the bottom of the public money charts, ahead of only Cleveland and Chicago. Folks in D.C. are also way too concerned about QB Kirk Cousins, who ranks in the middle of the pack at his position. Football Outsiders have Cousins at No. 18 in DVOA (Defense-adjusted Value Over Average).

Seems about right. Cousins shot up to No. 6 in DVOA last year, his first full year as a starter, but his previous body of work suggests a league-average quarterback. Nothing wrong with that. Meanwhile, Giants QB Eli Manning is back up among the near-elite at No. 8 in DVOA after falling to No. 19 last year. Let's stay on the right side of these “corrections” and put the G-Men in our NFL picks, keeping the bet size modest to match the profit margin.


Free NFL Pick: Giants –3.5 (–105)
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

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