The culmination of a week’s worth of work lands us right here, right now. Stone Cold Locks of the Week, slipping a bit these past couple weeks, but I’ve got to remind myself…even Michael Jeffery Jordan missed over 12k shots in his career. Now, I’m no MJ…but I am a Locksmith. And this is what I DO!
(53-34-2) on the season. Already picked up an L with the Seahawks failing to cover last night. So I guess that brings me to 53-35-2…but I’ll do a final tally at the end of the week. Let’s go!
Panthers (-2.5) vs Steelers- Love me some Carolina here. This team has a real identity now. They’re tough up front on defense, they pound the rock on offense, and even Sam Darnold is playing some solid ball. I told you earlier in the week, I’m on the Panthers to win the NFC South. If they can do that, it’ll have to start this weekend. The Steelers just lack too much talent across the board to be really competitive in the NFL, and if Kenny Pickett can’t play, its over. I’ll take Carolina as a short home favorite. Lock it up!
Falcons (+4.5) @ Saints- Apparently, I’m all over the NFC South this weekend, it’s a scary place to be. But I almost have to take this bet, I am in fact the leader of the Desmond Ridder fan club, and I think he’s going to show out right out of the gate. Something else to consider before you write him off completely as a rookie QB starting in the NFL…rookie QB’s are 9-5 ATS this year. Love that. The Falcons crashed back down to earth after starting the season 6-0 ATS, but I think things are about to bounce back in their direction. Think about it like this too…if you’re trying to explain how good Ridder can be, just consider the fact that Cincinnati went from the CFB Playoff to just an OK CFB team over night. Why is that? They lost Sauce Gardner on defense, we see how good he is…and they lost Ridder on offense. I also love the fact that the Saints don’t know his tendencies but he’s had 2 weeks to get ready for New Orleans. Huge advantage for a smart coach like Arthur Smith. Falcons +4.5, lock it up.
Cowboys (-4.5) @ Jaguars- I know a lot of you out there will disagree with this, but believe me, as someone who has been tricked for years by the Jaguars and their mysterious ways, this usually doesn’t end well. The second we start believing this is a real football team, is the moment they fall apart. Now of course, that’s terrible analysis, that’s just coming from someone who has been fooled by the Jags in the past on numerous occasions. But in all reality, the Cowboys are just better, a lot better…and I have to believe that last week served as a huge wake up call that they can’t just show up and out talent their opponents. Meanwhile, Jacksonville comes back home after the biggest road win of the season, in division feeling pretty good about themselves. I don’t think they have the talent on defense to matchup with the Cowboys run game, they don’t have a DB that can cover Lamb one on one…and I love the fact that Tyron Smith is back for the Cowboys, that could bring a huge boost in morale to this Cowboys team. The Jags have looked better, but they haven’t won back to back games since weeks 2 and 3. Buyer beware on Jacksonville. Cowboys minus the points, lock it up.
Lions (-1) @ NY Jets- Zach Wilson. I could end my explanation there. If Mike White was set to play, I was going to take the Jets, with Mike White out, I’m over the moon because I’d much rather back the Lions. This is a fun team to watch, this is a fun team to bet on, and they are rolling right now. The Lions have covered the spread in 6 straight, and yes, its asking a lot for them to do it again, but that’s where the opposing QB comes into play. According to Football Insiders- Mike White ranks 10th among all QB’s this season in terms of advanced analytics like DVOA. Zach Wilson ranks 26th. The drop off cannot be overstated here. Wilson’s last start was week 11 where he lost 10-3 and finished the game 9 of 22 passing for 77 yards. Happy to fade him in a pick ‘em spot. Lock it up!
Commanders (-4.5) vs NYG- This one stands out like a sore thumb to me. Another one of these lines this week that makes you scratch your head initially. Why would a team that just tied this opponent 2 weeks ago suddenly be favored by 4.5? I actually think the line hasn’t adjusted enough. Prior to the first meeting 2 weeks ago, the Commanders were -3 @ Metlife, now they’re back home, off a week’s rest, with only the film of 2 weeks ago to look at, and a Giants team that’s more banged up than the last time they played…and the line only moved a point and a half. The value is on the Commanders here. Also, here’s a fun fact, Danny Dimes is 0-9 straight up in prime-time games and 4-5 ATS in his career. He’s the only starting QB with at least 4 starts in prime time to never win a game. Washington rolls here, lock it up.
Picks I like- Colts +3.5, Bucs +3.5, Bears +9, Titans +3, Bills -7