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NFL Week 10 Predictions, Picks Against the Spread

Posted by in NFL Picks on November 10th, 2009 | Comment »

Vegas Martin’s top 6 NFL plays from week 9 went 4-2 against the spread this past weekend, so it’s good that we ended up on the winning side yet again.  That is now 3-straight winning weeks and our last 4/5 weeks have been positive. Unfortunately, the top 2 plays didn’t pan out, but we made up all that ground and then some when we found 2 winners at the 4:00 time slot and got another easy win on Monday night with the Steelers over the Broncos pick.

I hope anyone who took a hit on the Packers or Ravens picks boldly followed me into the 4:00 games and the Monday Night game to take back whatever was ours for the taking. New rule, never bet against a home underdog off the bye week. I have been preaching about that all season long, but failed to take my own advice. I felt the Packers over the Bucs and Ravens over the Bengals were both strong plays despite that significant factor to their disadvantage, but we learned the hard way and will not make that mistake again.

Don’t forget to check out Brandon’s week 11 college picks and to sign up for our Yahoo pick ’em league.

On to the week 10 NFL action to find out where we can make the easy money betting against the spread.


We start getting into Thursday Night football, so this is the first matchup of the week.  I don’t really like it.  Both teams have been hard to figure out this season.  Both teams were hugely disappointing last week and I advised our readers to pass on the Bears/Cardinals and 49ers/Titans game for exactly those reasons.  I thought I was onto something with the Cardinals solid play on the road this season, but I had the Panthers loss fresh in my head, so I had to pass on that game last week.  72% of the money is on the 49ers to cover in this one.

I had an inkling that the Titans would defeat the 49ers last week, which is why I put that game in the “no action” category, but I wasn’t about to bet on the 1-6 Titans on the road.  These teams match up pretty evenly on paper, but the home/away statistics give the 49ers the edge.  The Bears on the road score just 16 PPG and allow 26.5 PPG.  At home, the 49ers score 23.8 PPG and allow 22.2 PPG.  The most significant injury to the 49ers is CB Nate Clements.  Without having a lockdown corner who can cover speedsters Devin Hester and Johnny Knox is a huge blow to the 49ers.  A potential huge loss for the Bears is DT Tommy Harris, who is likely facing a suspension for his punch to a Cardinals offensive lineman.  I think I threw out enough information out there for you to make your own decision on this game, but I simply don’t like it as I do not see either team being a strong play.  I think it’s a tight game and I think Cutler has a great chance to expose the 49ers secondary, but the 49ers also have a chance to expose the Bears run defense who will be without Tommy Harris.  I’m leaning towards taking the points in this one.

Prediction: Bears 23 – 49ers 20

Free Pick: Bears +3 (Confidence: 2/5) (L)


The Jags couldn’t even cover 6.5 at home over the Chiefs.  Although they were in the money the entire game until a late score cost them the cover.  The Jaguars have been pretty dismal all season long and their pass defense is what has hurt them the most.  I’m expecting Mark Sanchez to rebound after some recent poor performances now that he’s had 14 days to go over his mistakes and prepare for a sub-par pass defense.  The key factor in this pick is the Jets are at home off the bye week.  We saw how home teams off the bye week faired last week, so I think the Jets cover in this one, although I believe it will be too close with the spread to make it a strong play.  They may cover by a mere half point, so I don’t love the game.

Prediction: Jets 24 – Jaguars 17

Free Pick: Jets -6.5 (Confidence: 3/5) (L)


The Titans are 2-0 with Vince Young, but unfortunately for their team, the move was made a few games too late.  With the NFL’s leading rusher against the league’s worst run defense, I think this is a great game to take.  The Bills surrender an average of 173.6 rushing yards per game and their offense has been pretty much non-existent as they average just 15.6 PPG.  The Titans averaging 32 PPG in their last two games.  I’m counting on Chris Johnson to go nuts this game and I don’t think the Bills have the offense to keep up.  Injuries to note: WR Justin Gage is out, WR Terrell Owens is questionable.

Prediction: Titans 24 – Bills 16

Free Pick: Titans -6.5 (Confidence: 3.5/5) (W)


I played the Vikings -10 over the Lions earlier in the season and took down a 27-13 victory.  The Vikings are another team that is at home off the bye week. Despite jumping out to a 17-3 lead, the Lions were defeated 32-20 last week against the Seahawks.   With the Lions surrendering 29.6 PPG and Stafford already throwing 12 INTs on the season, I think the Vikings still cover the high spread, but the spread is just too high for me to take it.  If the Lions manage to score just 2 TDs, they’ll likely end up in the money.  I love betting against the Lions, but the spread is just too high in this one for me to bite.

Prediction: Vikings 31 – Lions 13

Free Pick: No Action


With both teams at 6-2, 1st place in the AFC North is on the line.  The Bengals are without a doubt, this year’s biggest surprise.  For a team to get 2 more wins halfway through the season than they got in the entire 2008 season is remarkable.  If you recall from earlier in the season, the Bengals got the best of the Steelers the last time they played in Cincy.  The Steelers had a 20-9 lead with 9 minutes left to play, but the Bengals scored 2 TDs to win the game 23-30.

Chad Ochocinco is back to his usual tactics, sending the Steelers players Heinz mustard since they won’t be able to KETCH-UP.  Poor idea on his part since the last thing the Bengals need is for the Steelers to get more motivation to want to stomp the Bengals after being defeated by them earlier in the season.

The Steelers are rolling and I think they win this one, but I don’t like them very much with the spread.  The Steelers just aren’t very good against the spread this year.  They are 3-5 ATS compared to the Bengals 5-3 record ATS.  With a pretty even matchup on paper, I think you’re better served taking the 7 points on a 6-2 team that is just as hot as the Steelers.  I’m anticipating a Steelers win by 3-6 points.

Prediction: Steelers 23 – Bengals 17

Free Pick: Benglas +7 (Confidence: 2/5) (W)


The Redskins are another team that I love betting against.  With their team morale at a new all-time low, I think this is a good spot to bet against them.  They used to have a solid defense, but once the D saw that they don’t have the offense to help them out, they’ve pretty much given up on the season.  Not only did the Redskins lose Chris Cooley, but they also lost Clinton Portis, and their back RB Betts is questionable with an ankle injury.  With those injuries against a very solid Broncos defense, the Redskins will struggle to find points.  The Broncos are coming off two straight losses by wide margins.  My confidence has wained in them.  I also hate betting on west coast teams playing east coat teams at 1:00 since history shows that the east coast home team has a significant advantage.  I like the Broncos here due to their strong defense against a weak offense, but with the two straight losses making the Broncos look overrated has my confidence in them shaky at best.

Prediction: Broncos 23 – Redskins 13

Free Pick: Broncos -3.5 (Confidence: 3/5) (L)


I wonder what our reader TGIS has to say about this one.  He said he’ll take any opportunity to take advantage of high spreads against the Saints in order to take the points.  This is the Rams though.  They give up an average of 28 PPG and only score 9 PPG.  I love this spread since the Rams will likely be held to under 10 points, which means a mere 24 points will get the Saints in the money.  You can basically count on the Saints to put up points every time that they touch the ball.

I already have to break my “home team off the bye week rule,” which is what the Rams are, but this is the Saints vs. the Rams!  Last week with the Packers and Ravens pick, at least the Packers have a suspect defense and the Bengals are a legitimate team.  I think this is an exception to the rule.  The league’s best offense against the league’s worst defense and non-existent offense.  How can you say no to that?  The Rams lost to the Colts 42-6 and I think you see similar results in this one.  I don’t see how you can pass on this one, but if you’re a big believer in the “don’t bet against a home dog off the bye week” rule, then this one is not for you.

Prediction: Saints 38 – Rams 10

Free Pick: Saints -13.5 (Confidence: 4/5) (L)


I’ve been pretty high on the Falcons all season long.  The Panthers have been looking better after their upset win over the Cardinals, but they couldn’t top the Saints after jumping to an early lead.  92% of the public likes the Falcons and 4/5 experts are like them too.  Atlanta defeated the Panthers earlier in the year 28-20 and I think you see similar results in this one.  DeAngelo Williams is also questionable for the game.

Prediction: Falcons 26 – Panthers 20

Free Pick: Falcons -1.5 (Confidence: 3/5) (L)


The Bucs got their first win of the season last week against the Packers.  The Dolphins have been really impressing me.  They were able to hang in with their against the Patriots on the road and have been even more impressive at home, almost beating the Saints and Colts.  Miami is averaging 31.5 PPG at home.  I couldn’t believe that stat when I looked it up.  With the Bucs 30th ranked defense, the Dolphins should easily dominate this game, but the spread seems high to me.  I like the Dolphins to cover, but the spread is too high to make it a strong play.

Prediction: Dolphins 27 – Buccaneers 17

Free Pick: Dolphins -9.5 (Confidence: 2/5) (L)


At least one of these teams will get a win.  Both teams are horrendous, but I would go with the Raiders, who will be at home off the bye week.

Prediction: Raiders 12 – Chiefs 5

Free Pick: Raiders -1.5 (Confidence: 0.5/5) (L)


The Cardinals have been a very tough team to figure out.  Unbelievable on the road, horrendous at home, which is the opposite of how they’ve played home vs. away in past years.  Kurt Warner is capable of throwing 5 TDs or 5 INTs any week.  Arizona defeated the Seahawks 27-3 earlier this season and that was on the road.  Arizona also covered the spread both times they faced the Seahawks last year.  The trend is your friend.  Arizona is 3-0 ATS in their last 3 against the Seahawks.  I don’t see why things should be different in this one.  One injury to note: WR Anquan Boldin is questionable.

Prediction: Cardinals 27 – Seahawks 17

Free Pick: Cardinals -9 (Confidence: 2.5/5) (W)


The Eagles are my team as you are well aware.  This is a make or break game for both teams.  With both teams 5-3 and 1 game out of first place in their division, this game has tremendous playoff implications.  Neither team can afford their 4th loss of the season this early in the season, but 1 team will get it.  The Eagles are notorious for playing like crap when they travel on the west coast and I am not to thrilled that they’ll have to face a tough Chargers team on the road this week.  As an Eagles fan, I just have to leave it at that and hope for a win.

Free Pick: No Action


The Cowboys are playing tremendous football right now.  After starting the season 2-2, they’ve rattled off 4 straight wins.  The Packers have been a huge disappointment lately.  Their defense has been getting exposed and I think they have a tough time stopping the Cowboys this week.  Tony Romo has been playing at a high level and with their balanced offense, I don’t see how the Packers will stop them on 3rd down since Witten has had no problems picking up those 3rd and shorts.  The Packers should be able to hang in there with Aaron Rodgers and that impressive Packers passing game, but I think the Cowboys outduel them.  The Packers have a ton of issues on the offensive line, so look for the Cowboys to get a ton of sacks, which will get them more time with the football.  The Packers gave up 6 sacks to the Bucs last week and they average less than 1.5 sacks a game.  Packers DE Aaron Kampman will be out which is a huge blow for them.

Prediction: Cowboys 27 – Packers 20

Free Pick: Cowboys -3 (Confidence: 3.5/5) (L)


I cannot wait for this Sunday Night game.  I’ve been debating whether the Colts or the Patriots will be the one to come out of the AFC.  Both offenses have been outstanding, but the Colts offense has been slowing down lately.  The Colts have the better defense though.  This all comes down to Brady vs. Manning though, and Brady usually gets the best of Manning.  Tom Brady is 5-2 in the regular season and 2-1 in the post-season against Manning.  With Bob Sanders out, Brady must be smiling.  If the Patriots are getting 3 points, I’ll take them.  I think the Patriots win outright, but if they lose, it is likely by 3.  With the Patriots +3 at (-115), I think you see this spread drop to +2.5 by game time.

Prediction: Patriots 27 – Colts 24

Free Pick: Patriots +3 (Confidence: 3/5) (W)


The Browns are playing on Monday Night, are you f#@%ing kidding me?  The Browns are another home underdog off the bye week, but here’s another game where it seems too sweet to pass up on.  The Browns average 9.8 PPG.  They scored 6 points against the Bears and 3 points against the Packers.  How is this team going to score more than 10 points against the Ravens?  Maybe being at home on Monday Night will help them, but I just don’t see it happening.  The Browns rank at the bottom of the league in nearly every category.  The Ravens are still averaging 25.8 PPG and the Browns give up 26 PPG.  Provided the Ravens score 24 points, which should be no problem against the Browns, the Ravens end up in the money.

Prediction: Ravens 28 – Browns 10

Free Pick: Ravens -10.5 (Confidence: 3.5/5) (W)


I think you have 8 great spreads to choose from this week.  I wanted to note the home teams off the bye week that I picked against.  I know I said that I will no longer bet against home teams off the bye week, but I don’t see how the Rams or the Browns will benefit from the bye week against the strong teams like the Saints and Ravens.  At least I have two excuses for last week.  First, we can finally say it now, but the Bengals are legit.  Second, the Packers have defensive woes and had a blocked punt returned for a TD that hurt them.

Don’t take the rankings too seriously, but that is how I would ranked them.  I think all games a pretty even.  Pick the spreads that you think are the best.

Key game notes are asterisks because that’s how I roll with key information.

1.) Saints -13.5 over RAMS (* Rams are a home team off bye week) (L)

2.) TITANS -6.5 over Bills (* Terrell Owens was listed as questionable, but will play) (W)

3.) Cowboys -3 over PACKERS (* Moved up from #6 to #3 based on DE Kampman being out and Packers pass protection struggles) (L)

4.) Broncos -3.5 over REDSKINS (* Portis and Cooley are out; Backup RB Betts was listed questionable, but will play and will share carries with RB Carolina) (L)

5.) Patriots +3 over COLTS (W)

6.) Ravens -10.5 over BROWNS (* Browns are a home team off bye week; Started off at #3, dropped to #6 due to the high spread) (W)

7.) Falcons -1.5 over PANTHERS (* DeAngelo Williams was listed as questionable, but will play) (L)

8.) JETS -6.5 over Jaguars (L)

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