Week 7 NFL Picks of the Day

Darin Zank

Sunday, October 19, 2014 12:45 PM UTC

Sunday, Oct. 19, 2014 12:45 PM UTC

Another Sunday, another bakers' dozen chances to pick NFL winners. We've been a bit chilly with our free NFL picks as of late, but perhaps as the temperatures drop we can heat up. Here's what we've come up with for Sunday.

Colts -3/50 over Bengals
Indianapolis, which has won four straight games, hosts Cincinnati, coming off that tie game last week with Carolina.

After winning at Houston last Thursday the Colts are 4-2 SU and 5-1 ATS this season. Indy leads the league in total offense, scoring and average time-of-possession – that last of which is a very handy item when trying to win games and cover spreads in the NFL – and a respectable 13th in total defense.

Cincy, on the other hand, is 3-1-1 SU, 3-2 ATS, but 0-2 ATS the last two weeks. The Bengals rank fifth in total offense, but 28th in total defense and 29th against the run, giving up 141 yards per game on the ground. Two weeks ago they gave up 43 points to New England, and last week allowed 34 points through regulation against Carolina.

Also, Cincy is likely to be without wide receiver AJ Green, who's dealing with a bad toe.

The Bengals beat the Colts last December 42-28 at Paul Brown Stadium, but we expect a reversal of fortune Sunday.

Free NFL Pick: Indy -3 at Pinnacle

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Cardinals -3.5/45 at Raiders
NFC West-leading Arizona, with Carson Palmer back behind center, visits 0-5 Oakland, which has lost 11 games in a row.

The Cardinals bounced back from their loss at Denver two weeks ago to beat Washington last week 30-20. Palmer, in his first game back after missing time due to a shoulder injury, hit on 28 of 44 throws against the Redskins, for 250 yards and two touchdowns, with zero interceptions. That certainly was an upgrade over what Drew Stanton had done the previous three games.

Arizona ranks 25th in total defense; third against the run, but dead last, yardage-wise, against the pass. However, that last figure, 309 yards per game, is a bit skewed by what Peyton Manning did to the Cardinals a couple weeks ago, and Kirk Cousins' efforts last week, throwing from behind.

Oakland, meanwhile, is coming off a tough 31-28 loss at home to San Diego. The Raiders, in their first game under interim Coach Sparano, led that game by a touchdown with 10 minutes to go, but allowed the Chargers to score the last 10 points of the game. The Raiders rank 31st in total offense and rushing, 21st in total defense, 31st against the run and dead last in average time-of-possession. Those are not numbers normally conducive to winning games and covering spreads.

Neither of these teams has had much success running the ball this season, but Arizona, thanks to its run defense, stands the better chance of winning the ground battle in this game. And so far this NFL season teams that have outrushed their opponents are 62-30 SU and 61-28 ATS.

Free NFL Pick: Arizona -3.5 at 5Dimes

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Seahawks -6/43 at Rams
Seattle, coming off that home loss to Dallas, looks to bounce back at St. Louis.

The defending Super Bowl champs, after losing to the Cowboys, made some news this week when they traded Percy Harvin to the Jets. While Harvin could be a weapon at times, he apparently was also a cancer in the clubhouse. Perhaps the Seahawks will be better off without him.

Seattle is a bit banged up at the moment, but the bottom line is whether the Seahawks can get Marshawn Lynch and the running game going, after being held to 80 yards on the ground last week.

St. Louis, coming off a 31-17 loss at home to San Francisco Monday night, ranks 18th in total defense, and 26th vs. the run, giving up 140 yards per game.

Seattle has beaten St. Louis six of the last seven meetings, going 4-3 ATS. Two of those Rams covers came as dogs of 11 and 13 points. Today, St. Louis is only getting six points. It won't be enough.

Free NFL Pick: Seattle at -6 at SBR Sportsbook

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Upset Picks
Chicago won on the road last week, while Miami lost at home. But the NFL is a topsy-turvy league; teams that are up one week are down the next, and vice-versa. Don't be surprised if the Dolphins beat the Bears outright at Soldier Field Sunday.

New Orleans has struggled a bit so far, losing a couple of close games, but had last week off to work on its shortcomings. Detroit, meanwhile, will probably again be without WR Calvin Johnson. We won't be surprised when the Saints go into Ford Field as three-point dogs and come away with an outright victory. So kept that in mind when placing your NFL picks.

San Francisco ranks fourth in the league in time-of-possession, seventh in rushing and fifth against the run. News of the Niners' demise is probably premature. If they can get some pressure on Manning, perhaps force a turnover or two, move the chains and run some clock, the 49ers have a chance to pull the upset Sunday night in Denver.

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