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NFL Week 5 Picks Against the Spread

Posted by in NFL Picks on October 6th, 2011 | Comment »

NFL Week 5 Picks Against the SpreadLast week was a solid week. We recommended three picks and we hit two of our top three picks. We hit on New Orleans (-7) over Jacksonville, Washington Redskins (-1) over St. Louis Rams, but missed on Atlanta Falcons (-4.5) over Seattle Seahawks. My overall record in week 4 was 9-7 ATS and my yearly total is 32-30 ATS. My pick ’em league record is 31-31, but Yahoo did not update the Redskins +3.5 against the Cowboys and listed the game as a pick ’em and I took the Skins with the points. All three games were 4/5 star picks last week, but this week, all I have is handful of 3/5 star picks.


I’m going to target the Seattle Seahawks all season, although a healthy Sidney Rice, who went off last week, makes them slightly more dangerous to bet against. The Seahawks made a valient come-back effort against the Falcons by getting the cover, but failed to get the win. The Falcons took a 24-7 lead into the half until the Seahawks put up 3 TDs in the second half while limiting the Falcons to two field goals. Tavaris Jackson put up solid numbers with 319 yards and 3 TDs. I don’t expect that type of repeat performance on the road when a west-coast team has to play on the east coast at 1:00. The Seahawks running games has really struggled and their defense is lacking, giving up 24.2 PPG so the Giants can run away with this game in a hurry. The Giants have had the Seahawks number — beating them 41-7 on the road last year and 44-6 in 2008. The Giants offense should roll over a poor defense when they’re at home. Hakeem Nicks should have a monster day for fantasy owners.

Prediction: Giants 34 – Seahawks 17

Pick Against the Spread: Giants -9.5 (Confidence: 3/5)


I hate this game against the spread, but see a nice opportunity for a teaser.  The Patriots are averaging 33.8 PPG and over 500 yards of offense per game. The Jets are averaging 25 PPG. The Jets were in shootouts against Dallas and Oakland already and will have to shoot it out with the Patriots if they want to win this game. The Patriots defense has huge holes — they’re giving up 24.5 PPG, rank last in the NFL in yards allowed, rank last in 3rd-down stops, and rank last in 20+ yard plays allowed. With the over/under at 49, you could tease the line down to 42 and take the Patriots at -2.5. Both teams should be poised for at least 20 points and you’ll have a nice, warm, sunny day on Sunday in Boston. You may get one of those weird low-scoring games between these two, but I think the odds are in your favor at over 42 and sticking with Mr. Brady at home. The Patriots defense is awful and will give up a lot of points, but the Patriots will just outscore you.

Prediction: Patriots 31 – Jets 24

Pick Against the Spread: Patriots -2.5/Over 42 (Confidence: 3/5)


I’m actually going with the Bengals as one of my top picks this week. The Jaguars offense is horrible, averaging 9.8 PPG compared to the Bengals 20 PPG average. On defense, the Bengals average 18.5 PPG allowed while Jacksonville allows 21.2 PPG. Expect a low-scoring game, which is why the over/under is set at 36.5. The Jags offense should continue the struggle with Blaine Gabbert still getting accustomed to things. Gabbert is completing less than 50% of his passes and has a 62.9 QB rating.

The Jaguars are ranked 31st in yards-per-play with 4.3 yards-per-play, compared to the Bengals 5.4 average which ranks 17th. The Jaguars are also ranked 31st in 1st-downs per-game with 14.8 compared to the Bengals 18.5, which is ranked 20th. The Jaguars convert just 32% of their third downs, but the Bengals are worse in that department with a 28% conversion percentage. The Bengals defense is amongst the best at stopping offenses on 3rd down, ranked 3rd in the NFL, stopping opposing defenses 68% of the time. The Jags aren’t too shabby either, getting stops 62% of the time.

I’m also a fan of the Andy Dalton to A.J. Green connection. A.J. Green has already had two 100+ yard games. Other than the San Francisco game, Dalton has been solid with his first two games with a 100+ QB rating and two 275+ yard games with 332 and 298 passing yards and an 8+ yards-per-attempt average in those games (albeit against Denver and Buffalo). The Bengals also topped the “mighty” Buffalo Bills last week.

The Bengals are fairly strong against the run, allowing just 86.8 YPG and 3.1 YPC so Jones-Drew should be contained. Statistically, the Bengals have the #1 defense in yards allowed (275.5 YPG), which is ahead of the Steelers, Ravens, Cowboys, and Redskins.  Here is how the Bengals defense has performed against running backs this far this season:

Peyton Hillis – 17 rushes, 57 yards, 3.4 YPC, 0 TDs
Willis McGahee – 28 rushes, 101 yards, 3.6 YPC, 1 TD
Frank Gore – 17 rushes, 52 yards, 2.5 YPC, 0 TD
Fred Jackson – 17 rushes, 66 yards, 3.9 YPC, 1 TD

Although I simply like this game straight up and you’re getting 1.5 points with the Bengals, you may also want to bolster the pick by taking the Bengals +8.5 with the under 43.5 since both offenses are struggling while the defenses are performing well, but a 24-20 game is certainly possible.

Prediction: Bengals 20 – Jaguars 13

Pick Against the Spread: Bengals +1.5 (Confidence: 3/5), Bengals +8.5, Under 43.5 (Confidence: 3/5)


Although Chargers are without Antonio Gates and WR Malcolm Floyd is questionable, the Chargers should still be able to top the Broncos by 4. Denver has too many issues with their pass defense for Philip Rivers to have a quiet game. The Broncos are ranked 23rd against the pass, giving up 275 passing yards per game. The Broncos rank 23rd on 3rd-down defense getting stops just 57% of the time, while the Chargers offense is ranked 1st on 3rd down by converting 58% of their 3rd downs. The Broncos defense is ranked 24th in yards per-play and 18th in 1st downs allowed. I just see too many defensive issues in Denver and Philip Rivers should be able to take advantage despite the absence of Antonio Gates. Denver CB Champ Bailey will be returning, but won’t be 100% with a hamstring injury.

Prediction: Chargers 24 – Broncos 17

Pick Against the Spread: Chargers -4 (Confidence: 3/5)

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