Swinger’s NFLX Picks for Week 3: Driven To Keep Cashing Tickets

Teddy Bridgewater

Swinging Johnson

Wednesday, August 24, 2016 7:18 PM GMT

Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016 7:18 PM GMT

They say the dress rehearsal for the regular season is Week 3 of the preseason, and here we are! Let’s review the NFL odds and keep cashing those tickets.

Swinger’s Preseason Record 4-1-2 (+2.9 units)
If you are a sharp or a wise guy then getting a jump on a side or total in your NFL picks should be a good thing since you are convinced the line you get earlier in the week will be more advantageous than the one at kickoff. Once in a while I receive correspondence from readers suggesting that I purposely give myself a better line to help bolster my winning percentage when, in fact, I simply go shopping for the best available line at the major offshore books and do so earlier than later.

But that doesn’t always work out the right way and I direct you to the line I took early last week that the NFL odds makers were dealing on the Falcons/Browns total of 37. I went under, and lo and behold, the line climbed to 38 at kickoff giving me a bad number. Sure enough, the final score combined for exactly 37 points and instead of a winner, I merely got a push. Last week we went 2-1-1 including a separate write-up where I took the underdog 49'ers over the home chalk Broncos. Let’s do it!

 

Friday, August 26th – Steelers vs. Saints (Total)
When you look at the total number of points the Steelers have scored in this preseason, one might wonder how, even during the meaningless exhibition games, a professional team could only put 17 points on the board in those two contests. Particularly when a team employs one of the most prolific passing quarterbacks in Ben Roethlisberger, an All-World receiver like Antonio Brown as well as one of the most dynamic young rushers in Le’Veon Bell. If you have been watching these preseason games closely or if you happen to be a “Terrible Towel” waving fanatic then you would know that this tremendous trifecta of football talent has not seen a second of action.

That should change in this third game of the exhibition season, universally acclaimed as the most important of the four as it is often when the starters get the most reps and the scrubs are relegated to the sidelines for the most part. Yet, even if Roethlisberger and Brown do play more than a few sequences I don’t see their timing being nearly as in sync as it will be in a month from now. Le’Veon Bell may not even take the field as the team is being enormously cautious with his rehabilitation from a season-ending knee injury in November. Perhaps the biggest obstacle for offensive success is the Saints’ defense. New Orleans allowed 16 points last week to the Texans but only one Houston TD, as they registered four sacks and a pair of picks.

Neither offense is scaring me; particularly with the paucity of reps the top units have been given and will be given even in Week 3. I see this one going low on Friday night.

Free NFL Pick: Under 45 
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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Sunday, August 28th – Chargers vs. Vikings
Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer plays to win, even in the preseason as his 10-1 exhibition season record will attest. The Vikings are coming home and ready to christen a brand new stadium as the expectations are soaring in Minneapolis. Minnesota is also coming off a big win on the road in Seattle and I am not expecting the team to come out flat as a pancake despite the morale-boosting win. As we know in the regular season a big win the week before will oftentimes, though not all the time, induce a lethargic effort the following week. But this is the preseason where the No. 1 unit gets very little work and the backups producing such a victory will only get better because of it, as their jobs are on the line.

The Chargers offense was held without a touchdown last week in their 19-3 win over the Cardinals while the Vikings defense has also shined in their 18-11 victory over the Seahawks. Factor in that Teddy Bridgewater should get plenty of looks for Minnesota after sitting out last week with a sore shoulder.

Free NFL Pick: Vikings -4 
Best Line Offered: at BetDSI

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