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Week 3 – Picks Against the Spread (2012)

Posted by in NFL Picks on September 20th, 2012 | 4 Comments

Week 3 Picks Against the SpreadIn week 1, we nailed our only 9/10 game of the season and nailed it big thanks to the Texans. In week 2, we hit a few singles ending up with a 4-2 record against the spread. We hit both the Sunday and Monday Night picks are now stand 2-0 on Monday Night. We are rolling into week 3 with a ton of momentum. After taking an initial look at the lines, I hate this week. Nothing popped out instantly and I had to do a lot of digging to separate which lines to consider. We have 9 home dogs this week and that scares the crap out of everyone with the home dogs starting off the season 8-3 ATS, but I can’t help but pick against the majority of them in week 3. Let’s see what we got. Games are ranked in order of confidence.

Pittsburgh Steelers (-4) over OAKLAND RAIDERS — Confidence: 7/10 — The Raiders just haven’t played well at all this year. I had higher expectations coming into this season. 75% of the public is taking the Steelers (-4). This looks like a road favorite you can take a shot on. The Raiders are without their two starting corners and their defense has been terrible. Wish the backups good luck covering Wallace and Brown. The Raiders can’t generate pressure and they can’t tackle. McFadden is off to a slow start in the Raiders new blocking scheme. His average is a dreadful 2.1 YPC. I’m going to make the Steelers a top play this week.

Detroit Lions (-3) over TENNESSEE TITANS — Confidence: 7/10 — Through two weeks, the Titans look like garbage but they had to face the Pats in week 1 and then go on the road to face the Chargers. Chris Johnson hasn’t been able to get anything going and Jake Locker still has a lot to learn. I think you see the Titans get it together eventually, but this game should be the Lions game to win. Detroit has played some good ball on the road going 8-8 ATS while the Titans are just 7-10 ATS at home.

San Francisco 49ers (-7) over MINNESOTA VIKINGS — Confidence: 7/10 — The 49ers are one road favorite that I do like since their defense is a stone wall. They allowed 22 against the Packers on the road and 7 came via a punt return and then they held the Lions to 19. The 49ers beat both the Packers and Vikings by 7+ and I’m sure we can all agree that the Lions and Packers are better than the Vikings. The Vikings aren’t going to score a whole lot this week. I have faith in the 49ers to get the cover here. This looks like a good line to tease down to pair up with any other game. I expect a final score in the area is 27-13.

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (-9) over Kansas City Chiefs — Confidence: 7/10 — Both the Chiefs and Saints defenses have been a disaster in their first two games. The Saints offense should be able roll over the Chiefs at home, but does the Saints defense have it in them to get the Saints to a double digit win? That’s the huge question mark for me here. I’m thinking they do as they get it together for their first win of the season and win this one 34-24. I have all the faith in the world in the Saints offense, but the defense is a liability. 67% of the public likes the Saints. Saints are 13-5 ATS at home in their last 18 and were 8-0 ATS at home last year. They covered high spreads last year against good teams at home — Lions +9, Giants +7, Panthers +7, Bucs +9, Colts +13.5, Texans +3.5, and Bears +4.5.

Buffalo Bills (-3) over CLEVELAND BROWNS — Confidence: 6/10 — The Browns put up a nice fight last week against the Bengals, scoring 27 against a respectable Bengals defense. Brandon Weeden also played a good game by completing over 70% of his passes, throwing over 300 yards, tossing 2 TDs, and not turning the football over. I was hating on Weedon throughout the preseason, but maybe he’s turning the corner. I’m going to pick against the home dog in the pick ’em league since the Bills are just a flatout better team and I would take them at home -6.5, but it gets a low confidence rating due to the home dog factor.

BALTIMORE RAVENS (-3) over New England Patriots — Confidence: 6/10 — Revenge game for the Baltimore Ravens. At home in the lights. I’m expecting a win this time around. The Ravens have been waiting for this game for 9 months. The Cardinals and Giants provided a blue print on how to beat them.

CAROLINA PANTHERS (+1.5) over New York Giants — Confidence: 6/10 — I’m going with the Panthers here since the home team has a huge advantage on Thursday nights with the short week and the Giants left it all on the field in the 4th quarter this past week. Read my full analysis here.

Philadelphia Eagles (-4) over ARIZONA CARDINALS — Confidence: 6/10 — I’m an Eagles fan and confident that they can go on the road and beat the Cardinals. The public is split here 50/50. The Cardinals defense looks like the real deal after shutting down Tom Brady at home and just dominating Russell Wilson in the home opener. This is going to be a tough game for the Eagles, who still have a lot of work to do despite their 2-0 record. The Eagles have been sloppy with the football but still end up on the winning side. This is a game you likely want to avoid betting on this week.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+7.5) over DALLAS COWBOYS — Confidence: 6/10 — What a disappointment the Cowboys were last week, but Seattle is a tough place to play. Seattle has a strong defense, but the Cowboys just got embarrassed. I think you see the Cowboys return to the type of team everyone thought they had the potential to be when they beat the Giants in the season opener. I’m expecting a win from Big D this week, but I think you see the Bucs put up a fight and get the cover. Dallas hasn’t been able to cover the high spreads they usually get at home. The Cowboys are 5-11 ATS at home in their last 16 while the Bucs are 10-6 ATS on the road. The Bucs looked good through 3 quarters until Eli Manning went H.A.M. in the 4th. I like the Bucs getting 7 again. I give them a shot to cover this spread.

CHICAGO BEARS (-7.5) over St. Louis Rams — Confidence: 5/10 — What a fight from the Rams last week against against the Redskins. Expect a rebound from the Bears when they’re back at home, but this Rams team doesn’t look like the pushover they’ve been in year’s past. The Rams are 2-0 ATS so far. I was debating taking the Rams (+7.5), but I think the Bears defense will prove to be too much for Sam Bradford on the road.

Atlanta Falcons (+3) over SAN DIEGO CHARGERS — Confidence: 5/10 — What a performance from the Falcons D last week. Great game plan. I love the Falcons this year. I’m also impressed with the Chargers, especially the improvements they made on defense.  The Falcons have played well on the road and the Chargers have played well at home. 70% of the public is taking the Falcons. I’ll have to stick with them here.

Green Bay Packers (-3.5) over SEATTLE SEAHAWKS –Confidence: 4/10 — Another road dog. Seattle is a tough place to play, but I”m looking for Aaron Rodgers to get it done on the road.

Houston Texans (-1.5) over DENVER BRONCOS — Confidence: 4/10 — Tough game to call here as Texans defense could be the 2nd best defense in the league right now right behind the 49ers. Denver also has a superb defense. This is going to be a real tight game and one that I’ll pass on. Peyton Manning will look more like week 1 Peyton Manning at home rather than week 2 Peyton Manning on the road. If the Broncos front 7 can contain Arian Foster, they should come out on top in this one. Von Miller can get it done. The Texans have looked real solid though, so I have confidence in them to pull this one out on the road.

WASHINGTON REDSKINS (-3.5) over Cincinnati Bengals — Confidence: 4/10 –The Washington crowd will be rocking for RGIII’s home debut. I would really like the Redskins in this spot in their home opener, but I’m very concerned about the injuries to Brian Orakpo and Adam Carriker. TE Fred David is also doubtful. Those injuries are enough to keep me away from this game, but I still have to take RGIII at home in what could be a wild one.

MIAMI DOLPHINS (+3) over New York Jets — Confidence: 4/10 — Miami is 2-1 ATS at home against the Jets in the last three years, including a 19-17 win over the Jets in the final week of last season. Jets are 0-4 in their last four as a road underdog while Miami is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 against the AFC East. Revis is still listed as Questionable. 63% of the public likes the Jets. I’m trying to learn a lesson from last week and to proceed with caution when picking against home dogs. We’ll get a real taste of how that goes this week. I’m just going to stay away from most of these games completely.

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (-3) over Jacksonville Jaguars –– Confidence: 4/10 — MJD usually has his way against the Colts, but I’ll have to stick with Andrew Luck at home. This Colts vs. Jaguars matchup has seen some odd trends: the favorite is 4-1 ATS, the road team is 7-3 ATS, and the Jags are 4-1 ATS in Indianapolis (however, that is because the Jags always getting 7+ against Peyton Manning and usually play him pretty tough). The trends go out the window this time around and I’m going with the Colts.



4 Responses to Week 3 – Picks Against the Spread (2012):

  1. Rich H.

    Date: Sep 21, 2012 at 8:16 am

    Excellent work this year. Where is the button to buy you a beer?

  2. Vegas Martin

    Date: Sep 21, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Thanks Rich. The beer button is on the right side of the page. It’s directly across from New York Jets @ Miami Dolphins pick.

    This is a tough week with 9 home dogs. I’m going to have to take a few risks on my top three road favorites this week.

    Who ya taking this week? Good luck!

  3. Rich H.

    Date: Sep 26, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    A beer sent to you under a different email address (last name begins with H.).
    Your research and commentary have become a class act over the years. Much appreciated.

    Giving 7 and taking both Atlanta and Arizona. Looking for a double, worst a split.

    Thanks for what you contribute every week.

  4. Vegas Martin

    Date: Sep 28, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Thanks for the beer buddy! I appreciate it and the compliment. May the Falcons and Cardinals soar this week.

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