I’m starting to think we’re never going to see a good Thursday Night Football game.

After having to stomach Philly/Giants, Broncos/Cardinals, Dolphins/Texans and Raiders/49ers matchups in the four previous Thursday nighters, I was excited to see a marquee clash between the Panthers and Steelers on this week’s card. Then, of course, Pittsburgh goes on to pound the Panthers 52-21 in a game that was never really in doubt from the second quarter on.

If you’re keeping score at home, the home team on Thursday night has now won 7 of 9 games (8 of 10 if you include the season opener), many of them in dominant fashion. It’s clearly a huge disadvantage to road teams having to travel on an already short week, and I hope the NFL reviews its Thursday Night Football policy for next season.

Ready for some good news? There are still 13 more games to bet on this week, including a dozen on Sunday. And while 6 of those games have betting lines of a touchdown or higher (3 games have spreads of 10 or higher), I’m looking forward to some much more interesting games this weekend – not to mention the chance to make some cash.

Speaking of which, here are my 3 NFL predictions for Week 10 as we look to build on last week’s 2-1 performance.

1. 6-Point Teaser (-110): New Orleans Saints +0.5 (Sunday, 1 p.m. eastern) and New York Jets -1 (Sunday, 1 p.m. eastern)

Teasers are a great weapon for NFL bettors if you use them properly, and these two games fit the teaser mold to a T. By moving these point spreads by 6 points via a teaser, we’re now simply requiring the favorite to win the game outright (not by a touchdown or more) and I love each of these teams’ chances of doing exactly that.

Let’s start with the Saints, who I’ll admit are in a big of a letdown spot coming off some huge victories (Ravens, Vikings and Rams) since their bye week and now go on the road to take on a non-conference opponent. That’s enough to scare me away from backing New Orleans to cover the 5.5-point line, but I still don’t see the Bengals scoring the outright upset. New Orleans hasn’t lost since Week 1, the Saints have scored at least 30 points in 5 of their last 6 games (the one exception coming against a tough Ravens defense in Baltimore), and they’ve put up 40+ in 3 of those outings. This is not a train you want to step in front of right now, especially as the Saints added another weapon over the last week with the acquisition of Dez Bryant.

Cincy’s coming off a bye and is currently in wild card position in the AFC with a 5-3 record, but there’s also a lot not to like about the Bengals in this spot. The big one is the absence of stud wideout A.J. Green, who required surgery on his injured toe and is expected to miss a couple of weeks. Cincinnati is 4-7-1 in games that Green has missed in his career, and it’ll be even harder for the Bengals to make up for his absence with star tight end Tyler Eifert already gone for the year. Tyler Boyd might step up in Green’s role, but then who will be Option B for Andy Dalton to throw to, especially if the Saints’ defense keys on Boyd? And if Cincinnati’s offense doesn’t score points in this one, the Bengals are in serious trouble because of how poorly their D has played of late. When you’ve allowed 105 points in your last 3 games and held just 1 opponent under 23 points all year, the last thing you want to see is Drew Brees and company coming into town, whether the Saints are in a letdown spot or not.

The other team in our teaser here is the Jets, who I understand require a lot more guts to back right now than the Saints do. However, New York’s been a lot better at home this year (and last season as well) than it has been on the road, having already beaten up Denver and Indianapolis on this field in 2018. And while Sam Darnold will miss this game due to injury, I could easily make the argument that his replacement (Josh McCown) will play just as well as Darnold, if not better. McCown was on his way to a career season last year before being injured in Week 13 (he ranked third in the NFL in completion percentage and had thrown 18 touchdowns), and the 16-year veteran won’t be fazed by his first start of the year.


Betting Prediction

New York may not even have to do much on offense, however, because of how bad the Buffalo attack is. Whether the Bills are starting Nathan Peterman or Derek Anderson, neither of those quarterbacks has thrown a touchdown yet this year — to their own team, at least. Peterman’s three pick-sixes (including one last week) means that Buffalo QBs have now thrown as many touchdowns to their opponents (3) as they have to their own receivers. No team has thrown more interceptions for touchdowns than touchdown passes in a full season in 40 years! With Buffalo failing to score more than 13 points since Week 3, I’m confident the Jets do just enough on offense to pull this one out and cover the second leg of this teaser.

Place Your Bet Here

2. Jacksonville Jaguars +3 -120 (Sunday, 1 p.m. eastern)

Ready to shovel dirt on the Jacksonville Jaguars’ 2018 season? I wouldn’t be so quick. While many are burying the Jags’ playoff chances after a 3-5 start and with Blake Bortles looking completely inept once again at quarterback, I think Jacksonville’s got the potential to make a late-season push for the postseason, beginning with this week’s stop to Indianapolis.

Last time we saw the Jags, they were dropping another heartbreaker, falling 24-18 to the Philadelphia Eagles in London. But here’s the thing – that game was 2 weeks ago. Yep, Jacksonville enjoyed a bye last week, giving the Jaguars plenty of time to get their house back in order as well as get back to full health. And one key name that is no longer on the Jacksonville injury report is star running back Leonard Fournette, who returns to action this week after missing the last 6 games due to a hamstring injury.

When Fournette is in the lineup, this Jacksonville offense is completely different. Remember when Jags coach Doug Marrone said last year that he’d ideally run the ball 100% of the time? That wasn’t a shot at Bortles, it was a credit to Fournette and everything he brings to the Jacksonville offense. The Jaguars are 2-0 this season with Fournette in their lineup and 1-5 without him, and the LSU product’s hard-running style should do some damage this week against an Indianapolis defense that is hardly a brick wall.

If Bortles isn’t self-destructing the Jaguars, Jacksonville’s elite defense can get more rest, doesn’t have to deal with short fields and can simply play its game. That game is defending the pass, with the Jags boasting the top pass D in the NFL (although their second-overall ranking in total yards allowed isn’t too shabby either). The passing game is Indianapolis’ bread and butter, and if Jacksonville neutralizes Andrew Luck as I expect it to, I don’t see the Colts being able to counter on the ground.


Betting Prediction

Finally, I think the Jags have reason to play with optimism here because of their remaining schedule. Down the stretch, Jacksonville will play Indianapolis (twice), Buffalo, Miami, Washington and Tennessee in 6 of its last 8 games – hardly Murderer’s Row. Even the Jags’ toughest games have a silver lining, as they’ll host the Steelers next week (don’t be surprised to see Jacksonville favored in that one) and then have an opportunity to close ground on the division-leading Texans with a Week 17 visit to Houston. That soft second-half schedule explains why there’s still some playoff talk in Jacksonville these days. Look for an energized and motivated Jaguars team to take care of business with ease this week against a Colts team that has fattened up on the Bills and Raiders over the past 2 weeks but is 1-4 this year against teams with winning records.

Place Your Bet Here

3. Miami Dolphins +10 -114 (Sunday, 4:25 p.m. eastern)

I know people expect a lot more from the Green Bay Packers than their 3-4-1 record, and I agree that the Pack is better than that record indicates as well. But how can you lay double digits with the Packers right now? Of their 3 wins, 2 came by a combined total of 4 points (their Week 1 rally to beat Chicago 24-23 and then a 33-30 squeaker over the Garraopolo-less 49ers 3 weeks ago at home on Monday Night Football), while the other — a 26-0 blowout of the Bills — came with Buffalo flat as a pancake after beating the Vikings the previous week.

Green Bay’s big issue right now is its defense, which has allowed 30, 29 and 31 points over the past 3 weeks. Even against Brock Osweiler and the Dolphins, that’s not a defense I want to be laying 10 points with. Say what you want about Osweiler, but the Fish have fared just fine with him at QB (going 2-2 with him as their starter, including a win over the Bears) and have scored 21 points or more in 3 of 4 games.


Betting Prediction

With Green Bay’s potent offense and Miami’s potential to move the ball against this soft Packers D, a play on the Over 47.5 might make some sense as well. However, I’m not convinced that the Packers light up the scoreboard this week either. They’re excited to return home for their first of three straight games at Lambeau Field, but they’re also prime for a letdown after playing consecutive prime time games at the Rams and Patriots. Green Bay had a great chance for the outright upset in both of those wins, only to come away with frustrating defeats, and that takes its toll on a team. Throw in the uncertain status of tight end Jimmy Graham (missed practice this week due to a sore knee) and Miami’s ball-hawking secondary (15 interceptions), and I’m not sure Aaron Rodgers has his way with Miami’s defense this week. Yeah, the Dolphins may be an imposter at 5-3, but I’ll still gladly take 10 points with the dog in this spot.

Place Your Bet Here

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