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PREMIUM PICKS & BEST BETS
|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|02-07-21||Chiefs v. Bucs +3||9-31||Win||100||21 h 27 m||Show|
My selection is on Tampa Bay plus the points over Kansas City at 6:30 pm et on Sunday.
I'm actually surprised at how popular of a pick the Chiefs seem to be entering Super Bowl Sunday. With that being said, I can't help but think the books are begging for Kansas City action with this line sitting at a field goal. The public hasn't been behind Tom Brady's Bucs at all in these playoffs, and that doesn't appear to be changing here. Brady has looked as relaxed and confident as he has at any stage of his career during this playoff run. It certainly seems as if the Bucs as a team are getting stronger with each passing game. The Chiefs have looked invincible for much of the last two seasons but I think they're going to be up against it on Sunday. When it comes to the NFL it's tough to bet against a 'team of destiny' as the Bucs certainly appear to be. Take Tampa Bay (10*).
|01-24-21||Bills v. Chiefs -3||24-38||Win||100||11 h 28 m||Show|
My selection is on Kansas City minus the points over Buffalo at 6:40 pm et on Sunday.
I'll lay the points with the Chiefs here. I predicted a Chiefs-Packers Super Bowl prior to the playoffs and I'm not going to waver from that decision here. Yes, the Bills have impressed. Not just in the playoffs but all season long. Yes, they're a formidable opponent capable of giving Kansas City all it can handle on Sunday night. With that being said, I simply feel the Buffalo defense can, and will, be exposed and exploited by Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs offense. Mahomes is obviously banged-up, dealing with a concussion and a toe injury. There are plenty of doubters out there that don't believe Mahomes can be as effective in this game. Even if he is somewhat limited, I'll still take him over a beatable defense and in the worst case, expect Andy Reid to gameplan around Mahomes limitations. All told, it serves to give us a very reasonable pointspread to work with. Take Kansas City (10*).
|01-24-21||Bucs v. Packers -174||Top||31-26||Loss||-174||79 h 31 m||Show|
NFL Playoff Game of the Year. My selection is on Green Bay (moneyline) over Tampa Bay at 3:05 pm et on Sunday.
To put it simply, I can't envision the Packers losing this game. Rather than lay the 3 or 3.5 points against a Tom Brady-led Bucs offense that has proven time and time again it can play comeback ball and has high-potential to sneak in the back door for a push or cover, I'll keep it simple and back the Packers on the moneyline as I do feel the price could and should be even higher than it is. Of course, if you follow my plays regularly you know that I picked the Packers to win the Super Bowl prior to the playoffs. I certainly didn't see anything to make me believe otherwise in last week's rout of the Rams. Green Bay didn't really need to bring its 'A' game against an undermanned Rams squad, but will need it here. I expect Aaron Rodgers and company to deliver a peak performance against an admittedly rolling Bucs squad. I do think a little bit of recency bias could be at play here with most bettors remembering Tom Brady and the Bucs big performance against the Saints last Sunday night. Last Saturday's game at Lambeau Field has been all but forgotten. Give the Bucs credit, but they were in a fight with the Saints for three quarters - and that was with Drew Brees struggling mightily - clearly a shell of his former self and without swiss-army knife Taysom Hill to yield to. The fact is, this Packers team is different this year. Aaron Rodgers looks like he's having as much fun as he's had at any point of his career, and his supporting cast seems to get better with each passing week. With revenge on their minds after that ugly regular season loss in Tampa, look for the Pack to punch their ticket to Super Bowl LV in South Florida with a win on Sunday afternoon. Take Green Bay moneyline (10*).
|01-17-21||Browns v. Chiefs OVER 57||17-22||Loss||-105||18 h 38 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Cleveland and Kansas City at 3:05 pm et on Sunday.
While last night's anticipated shootout in Buffalo fizzled, I don't expect this game to suffer the same fate on Sunday afternoon. The Browns offense has shown the ability to hit big plays and score points in bunches, clearly evolving over the course of the season and absolutely playing their best football entering this game. I don't expect Baker Mayfield and company to back down from a shootout here. The matchup actually sets up well with Cleveland's strength running the football and Kansas City struggling to contain opposing running backs all season, allowing north of 4.5 yards per rush. Meanwhile, the Chiefs offense has mismatches all over the field with WR Tyreek Hill and TE Travis Kelce in line for monster afternoons on Sunday. Cleveland's secondary has been ravaged by Covid protocols in recent weeks but should be back to virtually full strength here. I just question whether they snap back into action and contain two of the league's best playmakers in Hill and Kelce. QB Pat Mahomes will undoubtedly get his against a beatable Browns front. This total is sky high for a reason. Take the over (10*).
|01-16-21||Ravens v. Bills OVER 50||Top||3-17||Loss||-102||55 h 22 m||Show|
NFL Divisional Round Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Baltimore and Buffalo at 8:15 pm et on Saturday.
I believe this has the potential to be the most entertaining - and highest-scoring - game of the Divisional Round. Baltimore got 'over the hump' so to speak with a come-from-behind win in Tennessee last Sunday. This Ravens offense has seemingly been getting better with each passing week - no longer the run-first (and run-only) offense that we saw a year ago. QB Lamar Jackson did it with his arm and his legs in last week's contest and should pick up right where he left off against what I consider to be an overrated Bills defense. Buffalo didn't get after Colts statue-esque QB Philip Rivers last Saturday and will be hard-pressed to do so against Jackson here. Of course, the Bills offense can score with the best of them and while this is a tough matchup against a stout Ravens defense, I believe QB Josh Allen and his terrific receiving corps will be up to the challenge. Last week it was the Stefon Diggs show but here against the Ravens I look for John Brown and Cole Beasley to step up as well. I don't expect to see Buffalo do too much running in this game, which certainly works in our favor, lending itself to shorter, but still productive, drives. I don't expect either side to back down in what I project as a back-and-forth shootout. Take the over (10*).
|01-16-21||Rams v. Packers -6.5||Top||18-32||Win||100||52 h 47 m||Show|
NFL Divisional Round Game of the Year. My selection is on Green Bay minus the points over Los Angeles at 4:35 pm et on Saturday.
Full disclosure - the Packers were my pick to win the Super Bowl prior to the NFL Playoffs getting underway last weekend. Here, I won't hesitate to back them laying a very reasonable number against the Rams. I'll give plenty of credit to the Rams for outlasting the Seahawks last Saturday. Los Angeles took advantage of a disjointed Seattle offense that took a turn for the worse past the midway point of the season and never really turned it back around - ultimately its downfall in my opinion. QB Jared Goff certainly didn't look healthy in last Saturday's win, with very little zip on any of his passes. He's probably the Rams best option again this week, however, after backup John Wolford suffered a scary head/neck injury last Saturday. Los Angeles will once again rely on its defense to win this football game - I'm just not convinced it can shut down the Packers vaunted offense the way it did the Seahawks. Packers QB Aaron Rodgers looks like he's having as much fun as he has at any point of his long illustrious career. This is a better offense than most give it credit for in my opinion. Defensively, the Packers do have some holes up front but I'm not sure the Rams have the offense to take advantage. Look for Green Bay's rock solid secondary to be the real difference maker in this contest. They'll give up some yardage over the middle to slot man Cooper Kupp, but outside of that, I look for them to lock down this inconsistent Rams 'O'. Take Green Bay (10*).
|01-11-21||Ohio State v. Alabama OVER 75||24-52||Win||100||23 h 0 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Ohio State and Alabama at 8 pm et on Monday.
I'll keep it simple with this play. Alabama finished number one in the nation in points per play this season and it wasn't all that close. The Crimson Tide should score at will in this game - even against an elite Ohio State defense. The Tide simply have too much NFL level talent on offense to be slowed in this game. However, we're talking about a matchup with a single-digit pointspread, and I do believe Justin Fields and the Buckeyes offense can keep pace for much of this game. Ohio State checks in ninth in the country in points per play and should be able to make some headway against an Alabama defense that is always exceptional but certainly not invincible. We're dealing with a high total in this one but it's in the 70's for a reason. Take the over (10*).
|01-10-21||Bears v. Saints OVER 47.5||9-21||Loss||-109||23 h 46 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Chicago and New Orleans at 4:40 pm et on Sunday.
While the Saints defense should certainly be respected here, I believe the potential is there for a shootout at the Superdome on Sunday afternoon. Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky certainly exceeded expectations once he reclaimed the starting QB job in Chicago, albeit against a relatively easy schedule down the stretch. Here, Trubisky will likely be leading the Bears offense in catch-up mode for much of the day and he has just enough weapons to inflict some damage against the Saints stout defense. New Orleans has the potential to go off with RB Alvin Kamara back on the field against an overrated and undermanned Bears defense. While QB Drew Brees has been relegated to more of a 'game manager' role on many occasions at this stage of his career, I expect him to have a big day on Sunday afternoon. The Chicago defense is very beatable and Brees is likely to have WR Michael Thomas back on the field for this one. Take the over (10*).
|01-09-21||Bucs v. Washington Football Team UNDER 44.5||31-23||Loss||-105||35 h 26 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Tampa Bay and Washington at 8:15 pm et on Saturday.
The Washington Football Team hasn't posted an 'over' result since its Thanksgiving Day game against the Cowboys and I don't see that streak ending, even against the high-scoring Bucs on Saturday night. Washington can certainly use the 'no one believes in us' mantra as a near-double-digit underdog entering this contest. There's reason for it to be somewhat confident as it boasts a fierce defensive front that should put Bucs legendary QB Tom Brady under duress all night long - or at least that's the hope. Brady's struggles when under pressure have been well-documented, particularly in recent years. Of course it generally takes two teams to topple a total and in this particular matchup, Washington is relatively hamstrung on offense. QB Alex Smith is dealing with a calf strain and while he's likely to start, it remains to be seen whether he can finish this game. Standout RB Antonio Gibson has been dealing with a turf toe injury while WR Terry McLaurin had to shake off a high ankle sprain to suit up last week. Despite playing the 'under' in this game, we actually want the Washington offense to find some success moving the football and eating some clock in this game, and I'm confident they can do that against a Bucs defense that will yields plenty of completions in the short passing game - an area of strength for this WFT offense. Having scored 23 points or less in 12 of 16 games this season, there's little reason to anticipate a sudden breakout on the scoreboard from Washington here. Take the under (10*).
|01-09-21||Rams v. Seahawks UNDER 42.5||Top||30-20||Loss||-115||33 h 31 m||Show|
NFL Wild Card Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Los Angeles and Seattle at 4:40 pm et on Saturday.
We won with this same play the last time these two teams met in Week 16 - a game that totaled just 29 points. While I'm not going to count on another sub-30-point result here, I do expect this third meeting of the season to say 'under' the low posted total. Seahawks QB Russell Wilson threw just one touchdown compared to two interceptions in two regular season meetings between these two NFC West rivals. There's little reason to expect a sudden breakout here, with Wilson being asked to do far less down the stretch during the regular season, as the Seahawks defense rose to prominence. Meanwhile, the Rams offense has a big question mark under center - will it be Wolford or Goff under center? Regardless which quarterback gets the start, they're likely to struggle against a Seattle defense that absolutely rounded into form at the most critical point of the season. I do believe Los Angeles can have some success moving the football and orchestrating long, clock-churning drives in this game (the return of left tackle Andrew Whitworth is key) but I'm not confident in its ability to end many of those drives with 7's on the board. Much like the Rams, the Seahawks defense has the ability to take away big plays downfield, and the presence of Wolford (or Goff for that matter) also keeps a cap on that big-play potential. These two teams know each other inside and out and their recent matchups have been un-exciting for those that love wild, high-scoring shootouts. Expect another hard-fought, low-scoring affair on Saturday. Take the under (10*).
|01-09-21||Colts v. Bills OVER 51||24-27||Push||0||29 h 47 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Indianapolis and Buffalo at 1:05 pm et on Saturday.
I'm expecting plenty of offense as the Bills host a playoff game for the first time since 1996 on Saturday afternoon against the Colts. Indianapolis boasted an elite defense during the early stages of the season but the wheels came off a little bit down the stretch and now it draws a nightmarish playoff-opening matchup in Buffalo. The Bills got some good news on Thursday with underrated WR Cole Beasley returning to practice and superstar WR Stefon Diggs indicating that he's good to go for Sunday's game despite a nagging oblique injury. I fully expect Bills QB Josh Allen to let it fly against a Colts defense that has had a penchant for giving up big plays through the air. The question is whether the Colts can do enough on offense to help this one up and over the relatively high total. I believe the answer is yes. Indy RB Jonathan Taylor was positively dominant down the stretch, albeit benefiting from some positive game scripts. You can run on the Bills and I'm confident that Taylor can do enough to open things up for veteran QB Philip Rivers. Big plays will be tough to come by against this Bills secondary, but look for the Colts to grind out enough Taylor-fueled touchdown drives to help this one along. Take the over (10*).
|01-03-21||Seahawks -6.5 v. 49ers||26-23||Loss||-112||23 h 42 m||Show|
My selection is on Seattle minus the points over San Francisco at 4:25 pm et on Sunday.
The 49ers delivered a stunning upset win over the Cardinals last Saturday leading some to believe they may offer some value in an underdog role against the Seahawks here this week. I don't believe that's the case, however, as we should see San Francisco effectively fold the tent against a motivated Seahawks squad that is absolutely rolling heading into Week 17. While Seattle has leaned heavily on its defense to win games in recent weeks, this is a prime breakout spot for its offense against a 49ers defense that has been injury-ravaged all season long and can't have much left in the tank at this point. Meanwhile, a number of the 49ers key cogs on offense will sit this one out, leaving QB C.J. Beathard in tough against a still-surging Seahawks defense. Look for Seattle to be able to take the air out of the football in the fourth quarter of this one as it imposes its will and ultimately posts a comfortable win. Take Seattle (10*).
|01-03-21||Ravens -13.5 v. Bengals||Top||38-3||Win||100||20 h 37 m||Show|
NFL Blowout Game of the Week. My selection is on Baltimore minus the points over Cincinnati at 1 pm et on Sunday.
We won with the Ravens in their blowout victory over the Giants last Sunday - our second time winning with them in the last three games - and I won't hesitate to go back to the well with them again as they hit the road to face the Bengals in Week 17 action on Sunday. As I noted in last week's analysis, Baltimore's bandwagon effectively cleared during a three-game Covid-induced slide in late November-early December. Since then all the Ravens have done is get healthy and go a perfect 4-0 SU and ATS in their last four contests. Now they draw another favorable matchup against the Bengals, who are in a clear letdown spot off last week's offensive eruption against a hapless Texans defense. Despite winning consecutive games in improbable fashion, the Bengals were actually shredded for nearly seven yards per rush by the Steelers and Texans over the last two weeks. The Ravens should have little trouble continuing that trend here. Meanwhile, the Baltimore defense has rounded back into the form we saw earlier in the season and is in line for another productive day against a Bengals offense that isn't nearly as good as it looked last week. The Ravens had no trouble disposing of the Bengals by a 27-3 score the last time they squared off. Expect another lopsided result here. Take Baltimore (10*).
|01-03-21||Vikings v. Lions OVER 54||37-35||Win||100||19 h 29 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Minnesota and Detroit at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This game sets up as a shootout between the NFC North division rival Vikings and Lions in friendly conditions at Ford Field on Sunday afternoon. Vikings QB Kirk Cousins won't have RB Dalvin Cook in the backfield to relieve the pressure on Sunday afternoon but he should find plenty of success nonetheless with the Lions having no semblance of a stout defense whatsoever. Detroit doesn't get after opposing quarterbacks, doesn't subdue ground attacks and certainly does not contain opposing wide receivers. While Cook's absence isn't ideal, the Vikes still have a terrific stable of running backs to lean on. Meanwhile, Cousins should absolutely feast on a deplorable Lions secondary with both Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson in line for big days. Detroit may actually get QB Matt Stafford back on the field on Sunday afternoon and regardless of all the injuries he's dealing with, I still expect him to go all out against a very beatable Vikings defense. Detroit's offense was a complete no-show last Saturday against Tampa Bay as it was completely thrown out of rhythm by Stafford's early exit. Here, I do expect to see Detroit find the end zone on multiple occasions and aim to end another disappointing campaign on a relative high note. Take the over (10*).
|01-02-21||Kentucky v. NC State UNDER 49.5||23-21||Win||100||14 h 15 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Kentucky and N.C. State at 12 noon et on Saturday.
Kentucky scored 41 points in its most recent game - a 23-point rout of South Carolina. The Wildcats scored 30+ points on three different occasions but all three of those games came against non-Bowl teams. Here, the Wildcats will be in tough against an N.C. State defense that ranks 51st in the nation in points allowed per play and 42nd in sack percentage. Of course, Kentucky's calling card is its defense - that's been the case for a number of years. This is a manageable matchup for the Wildcats defense, noting that they rank 49th in the nation in points allowed per play. Both teams will give up their share of rush yardage but that should only end itself to long, clock-churning drives on Saturday afternoon. Note that Kentucky QB Terry Wilson threw more than a single touchdown in a game just once this season. N.C. State QB Bailey Hockman threw more than two touchdowns on two occasions but those performances came against two weak defenses in Florida State and Syracuse. Take the under (10*).
|01-01-21||Cincinnati v. Georgia -6.5||Top||21-24||Loss||-114||27 h 1 m||Show|
CFB Bowl Game of the Year. My selection is on Georgia minus the points over Cincinnati at 12 noon et on Saturday.
Cincinnati has gone undefeated this season and we've been along for the ride in a few of those victories but here I believe the Bearcats are going to be in tough trying to keep this game close against Georgia. If you're not going to come up with big, explosive plays on offense, you're not likely going to hang around against the Bulldogs. Georgia's defense is just too good to string together long, methodical touchdown drives against but unfortunately that's been the Bearcats M.O. this season. In their only two losses against Florida and Alabama, Georgia gave up a number of long touchdown runs and passes - Cincinnati just isn't likely to display that same sort of quick score ability. Meanwhile, we saw Georgia's offense really round into form down the stretch. While it will face a tough challenge here, it's not anything it hasn't faced in the SEC this season. The Bearcats are a talented team across the board, but boasts few players that have NFL potential. Georgia, on the other hand, is loaded with NFL-level talent and poised to end its 2020 campaign on a high note on New Year's Day in its own backyard (this game will be played in Atlanta). Take Georgia (10*).
|12-31-20||Ball State v. San Jose State -9||34-13||Loss||-120||16 h 56 m||Show|
My selection is on San Jose State minus the points over Ball State at 2 pm et on Thursday.
San Jose State has proven to be an underrated team all season long and there's little reason to expect it to finally get tripped up on Thursday against MAC opponent Ball State. The Spartans exceeded expectations at every turn this season, culminating with a first ever MWC championship over perennial winner Boise State. I really liked the way QB Nick Starkel stepped up in that contest, proving he is more than just a game manager by throwing for 453 yards and three touchdowns. Keep in mind, earlier in the season he also threw for 467 yards and five touchdowns against New Mexico. I absolutely love the versatility of this Spartans squad as they're able to win a slugfest or a shootout. Ball State blindsided conference front-runner Buffalo in the MAC Championship Game, although that victory had a lot to do with the Bulls losing do-it-all RB Jaret Patterson to injury in that contest. Outside of Buffalo, I didn't find the MAC overly impressive this season. Ball State does a lot of things ok but is by no means an elite offensive or defensive squad. Look for Cardinals QB Drew Plitt to be under duress all afternoon long and for the Spartans to force a key turnover or two that ultimately puts this game away. Take San Jose State (10*).
|12-30-20||Wisconsin v. Wake Forest UNDER 52||42-28||Loss||-114||15 h 46 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Wisconsin and Wake Forest at 12 noon et on Wednesday.
I'm not sure how excited either of these teams are about playing in the Mayo Bowl on Wednesday afternoon. With that being said, I'm expecting a battle in the trenches of sorts as the Badgers line up against the Demon Deacons. Wisconsin of course owns one of the best defenses in the nation, ranking 12th in points per play allowed. The Badgers check in 16th in yards per rush allowed and 12th in yards per pass attempt given up. Wake Forest QB Sam Hartman suffered some regression this season, throwing more than two touchdown passes in a game just once - that performance coming in a wild 59-53 loss to North Carolina. He does do a nice job of taking care of the football, having thrown just one interception this season. I see this game playing out with the Demon Deacons finding some success moving the football against a tough Badgers defense but not finishing many drives with 7's on the board. Likewise, the Badgers should be able to find some running room against a weak Demon Deacons run defense but they certainly didn't show the ability during the regular season to score with any consistency and are particularly limited in their passing offense with QB Graham Mertz asked to be little more than a game manager, having completed more than 20 passes in a game only once. Take the under (10*).
|12-29-20||Oklahoma State v. Miami-FL UNDER 61.5||Top||37-34||Loss||-107||19 h 10 m||Show|
CFB Bowl Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Oklahoma State and Miami at 5:30 pm et on Tuesday.
This game is being pegged as a potential offensive shootout. I'm not so sure that's how it will play out on the field, however. Oklahoma State was supposed to contend for a Big 12 Championship this season but a nagging ankle injury to RB Chuba Hubbard helped derail its hopes, and now Hubbard has opted-out of the Cheez-It Bowl to prepare for the NFL Draft. While the Cowboys offensive cupboard is by no means bare without Hubbard, I expect them to have their work cut out for them here. That's mainly because QB Spencer Sanders has failed to impress in his sophomore campaign. He threw more than a single touchdown pass just twice in eight games during the regular season and threw at least one interception in six of those contests. He's likely to be under duress for much of this game with Miami ranking a respectable 39th in the nation in sack percentage with that ranking rising to ninth over its last three games. Yes, the Canes have struggled against the run, which is the Cowboys strength, but here I'm not sure they'll respect Sanders enough to stray from stacking the box and forcing him to beat them through the air. On the flip side, the Miami offense showed flashes of brilliance with transfer QB D'Eriq King this season, but now face an underrated Oklahoma State defense that ranks ninth in the country in sack percentage and 22nd in yards allowed per pass attempt. Note that Miami RB Cam'Ron Harris ran for exactly 134 yards in each of his first two games this season but never reached those heights again, topping out at 96 rush yards over his last eight contests while being held to 63 rush yards or less in seven of those. It doesn't take many stalled drives to stay 'under' a lofty total such as this one. Both offenses are capable of moving the football but long, clock-churning drives can work in our favor in this case. Take the under (10*).
|12-28-20||Bills v. Patriots UNDER 46.5||38-9||Loss||-112||13 h 40 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Buffalo and New England at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
We won with the 'over' in the Bills rout of the Broncos last Saturday but I won't hesitate to go the other way and back the 'under' as they head to New England to face the rival Patriots on Monday night. Buffalo's defense has stiffened up considerably down the stretch and should have little trouble containing a Pats offense that has struggled all season, but particularly of late. The Bills don't give up many big plays downfield and actually check in as a top-10 run defense over their last three contests which should severely limit New England's ability to move the football into scoring range. On paper, the Bills should have their way with the Pats defense but New England remains a well-coached, prideful football team and I can't see it simply rolling over in this late season division game, especially after dropping a tough 24-21 decision in Buffalo earlier this season. I certainly expect the Pats to do a better job containing the Bills offense than Denver did last week, or San Francisco did the last time Buffalo appeared on Monday Night Football three weeks ago. Take the under (10*).
|12-27-20||Titans v. Packers OVER 54||Top||14-40||Push||0||24 h 38 m||Show|
NFL Non-Conference Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Tennessee and Green Bay at 8:20 pm et on Sunday.
We've seen this total drop and that likely has something to do with the forecast calling for possible snow and cold conditions at Lambeau Field on Sunday night. We're not likely going to see the type of weather that has a real impact on scoring, however, and I certainly feel that this game has shootout potential in the second-last Sunday Nighter of the regular season. We rode the Titans offense to victory in last week's blowout win over the Lions but the matchup is obviously much tougher here as they travel to face the Packers. With that being said, I like Tennessee's chances of finding continued offensive success with QB Ryan Tannehill having settled into a groove with standout WR duo A.J. Brown and Corey Davis and RB Derrick Henry absolutely running wild down the stretch. Henry draws a favorable matchup here against a Packers defense that can't stop the run. On the flip side, the Packers offense is relatively healthy and figures to feast on a bottom of the barrel Titans defense that has only avoided embarrassment thanks to facing the lowly Jaguars and Lions over the last two weeks. Tennessee doesn't get after opposing quarterbacks at all, which spells likely doom against MVP front-runner Aaron Rodgers. Note that only three teams have allowed more yardage to wide receivers than the Titans this season, setting this up as a monster spot for WR Davante Adams and company. Take the over (10*).
|12-27-20||Eagles v. Cowboys UNDER 50||Top||17-37||Loss||-105||19 h 7 m||Show|
NFC East Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Philadelphia and Dallas at 4:25 pm et on Sunday.
I really liked the way the 'over' set up in the Eagles narrow loss to the Cardinals week but didn't end up playing it due to the inconsistent nature of the two offenses. It was obviously the wrong decision but that high-scoring outcome does seem to be leading plenty of bettors to the window to play the 'over' in this one. Most are very high on Eagles rookie QB Jalen Hurts' after he ran wild against the Saints and then threw for 300+ yards against the Cardinals last week. I'm not convinced we're going to see another big performance from Hurts in the boxscore on Sunday, however - even if this is a mouth-watering matchup against the lowly Cowboys. Keep in mind, while Hurts did throw for 338 yards and three touchdowns in Arizona, he also took six sacks, fumbled the ball three times and completed just 24-of-44 passes. In other words, Hurts is no sure thing to explode against an admittedly beatable Cowboys defense on Sunday. With each passing week opponents have a little more tape on Hurts and it's not as if he has an elite supporting cast. Dallas' offense remains in shambles, although you wouldn't know it by last week's wild 41-33 win over the 49ers. That high-scoring result serves us well here as it keeps this total higher than it probably should be noting these two teams combined for 32 points the last time they faced each other. While the Eagles are dealing with a cluster of injuries in their secondary, I'm not sure that QB Andy Dalton and the Dallas offense is capable of taking advantage. Philadelphia still has a vaunted pass rush, ranking second in the NFL in sack percentage this season. The Cowboys offense ranks 23rd in sacks allowed per game. Take the under (10*).
|12-27-20||Giants v. Ravens -9.5||13-27||Win||100||17 h 31 m||Show|
My selection is on Baltimore minus the points over New York at 1 pm et on Sunday.
It seems that most bettors abandoned the Ravens weeks ago but those who have stuck around have been handsomely rewarded as they've reeled off three straight wins and covers over the last three weeks. Here, they appear primed to deliver another lopsided victory, this time at the expense of the up and down Giants. Baltimore endured plenty of adversity due to Covid earlier this season but now find themselves in terrific shape with most of their key cogs on both sides of the football rested and (relatively) healthy. The same can't be said for the Giants, who have had numerous players in and out of the lineup, including QB Daniel Jones who remains less than 100% healthy entering this contest. That stunning upset win in Seattle back on December 6th (we won with New York in that game) may end up being the high point in an otherwise disappointing campaign. We're being asked to lay plenty of points in this contest, but I believe the line could be even higher. Take Baltimore (10*).
|12-26-20||49ers v. Cardinals -5||20-12||Loss||-105||19 h 11 m||Show|
My selection is on Arizona minus the points over San Francisco at 4:30 pm et on Saturday.
This sets up as an ideal matchup for the surging Cardinals, who will be aiming for their third straight victory on Saturday afternoon. The 49ers are likely to be in tough with third-string QB C.J. Beathard taking over under center. He's had plenty of chances as an NFL quarterback and has generally failed miserably. There's little reason to expect a great deal of improvement here with the 49ers offense quite simply broken in what has amounted to a lost season due to injuries and otherwise. Cardinals QB Kyler Murray lit up the 49ers back in Week 1 and projects to do the same here in Week 16 with the Niners missing both Richard Sherman and Jimmie Ward, two key cogs in their secondary. We haven't backed the Cards often this season but this is an ideal spot laying a very reasonable number at home against a Niners squad that's simply playing out the string. Take Arizona (10*).
|12-26-20||Bucs v. Lions OVER 54||Top||47-7||Push||0||16 h 53 m||Show|
NFL Non-Division Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Tampa Bay and Detroit at 1 pm et on Saturday.
This is an absolute smash spot for the Bucs offense coming off an encouraging come-from-behind win in Atlanta last Sunday. Detroit is a mess defensively with a number of key cogs missing, including their top two cornerbacks. The Bucs should be able to take their pick here as to whether they want to throw all over the Lions beatable pass defense or run wild against their non-existent run defense. While I've been high on the Bucs defense for much of the season, I do think Detroit can do some damage in this game with enough skill position players performing well (most notably WR Marvin Jones, TE T.J. Hockenson and RB D'Andre Swift) to instill confidence in this possible letdown game for Tampa Bay. QB Matt Stafford is still banged-up nursing multiple injuries but there's little reason to expect him to do anything but bomb away in this 'nothing to lose' matchup. Take the over (10*).
|12-25-20||Vikings v. Saints UNDER 51.5||33-52||Loss||-118||20 h 11 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Minnesota and New Orleans at 4:30 pm et on Friday.
This game may project as a shootout on paper as both the Vikings and Saints are known for their prolific offenses, however, I'm expecting it to play out lower-scoring than most expect. We won with the 'over' in the Vikings last game, a wild home loss to the Bears last Sunday. Of course, we were dealing with a total in the mid-40's in that game, and it actually set up more favorably for the Vikings offense. Here, Minnesota's run-first mentality may actually plague it with RB Dalvin Cook dealing with numerous injuries and playing on a short week. Meanwhile, QB Kirk Cousins has been a true 'Jekyll-and-Hyde' and figures to struggle against the Saints vaunted pass rush. New Orleans struggled to get to Chiefs mobile QB Pat Mahomes last Sunday but should tee off on a statue-esque Cousins here. While the Vikings have struggled defensively for the most part this season, we have seen signs of life from them against the pass in recent weeks. The Saints are in a bit of a state of flux right now with Drew Brees back under center and dealing with the absence of WR Michael Thomas. RB Alvin Kamara will get his, but that may only lead to long, clock-churning offensive drives rather than consistent 7's on the board. Take the under (10*).
|12-24-20||Hawaii v. Houston UNDER 60.5||Top||28-14||Win||100||21 h 7 m||Show|
CFB Bowl Total of the Week. My selection is on the 'under' between Hawaii and Houston at 3:30 pm et on Thursday.
This one is being pegged as a potential shootout between the Rainbow Warriors and Cougars - after all, both programs are known for their high-octane offenses and what else would we want to see on Christmas Eve other than a wild, high-scoring affair? With that being said, I believe this lofty total will prove too high. Hawaii checks in ranked 88th in the nation in points per play, struggling against any defense with a pulse this season. While Houston could be undermanned due to ineligibility and opt-outs, it still possesses a defense that ranks an impressive eighth in the country in sack percentage. Meanwhile, the Warriors offense ranked a miserable 92nd in the nation in QB sacked percentage this season. It's certainly worth noting that the Cougars are expected to miss arguably their best offensive player in WR Marquez Stevenson, who has apparently elected to opt out to prepare for the NFL Draft. While the cupboard is by no means bare for the Cougars on offense, QB Clayton Tune can't be asked to do it all. Hawaii actually finished the season ranked a respectable 39th in the nation in yards allowed per pass attempt. I suspect we'll see plenty of long, clock-churning drives in this game, ultimately keeping it 'under' the lofty total. Take the under (10*).
|12-23-20||Florida Atlantic +9 v. Memphis||10-25||Loss||-116||22 h 9 m||Show|
My selection is on Florida Atlantic plus the points over Memphis at 7 pm et on Wednesday.
Many will make the case that Florida Atlantic doesn't belong in a Bowl game at all after an embarrassing 45-31 loss to Southern Miss in its regular season finale. Keep in mind, the Owls were essentially playing for nothing in that game with only a (very) outside chance at reaching the C-USA Championship Game. FAU had started the season 5-1 before dropping its final two contests. Still, the Owls check in ranked an impressive 7th in the nation in points allowed per play and I believe they can do enough offensively to shorten this game and let their defense take care of the rest. Memphis didn't have a banner year by its own program's standards, losing three games to finish 3rd in the AAC. QB Brady White topped out at two touchdown passes in his last four games and took a ton of sacks and threw a bunch of interceptions over the course of the season. Meanwhile, the Tigers ground attack wasn't all that dynamic at all, ranking 97th in the country in yards per rush. Look for the Owls to do what they can to muck this one up and ultimately stay inside the number. Take Florida Atlantic (10*).
|12-23-20||Florida Atlantic v. Memphis UNDER 52||10-25||Win||100||12 h 50 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Florida Atlantic and Memphis at 7 pm et on Wednesday.
Memphis hasn't been the same offensive juggernaut we've become accustomed to seeing here in 2020, ranking 59th in the country in offensive touchdowns per game and 72nd in yards per play. Here, the Tigers will face a Florida Atlantic squad that checks in an impressive seventh in the nation in points per play allowed. There's little reason to expect a real offensive breakthrough from the Owls offense in this one. Their calling card has been controlling the football (and the clock) and leaving it up to their defense to take care of the rest. The Owls check in 109th and 110th respectively in points allowed per play and offensive touchdowns per game. On the flip side, only two teams have allowed fewer offensive touchdowns per game this season. Take the under (10*).
|12-23-20||Georgia Southern v. Louisiana Tech UNDER 49||38-3||Win||100||18 h 17 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Georgia Southern and Louisiana Tech at 3 pm et on Wednesday.
Bettors are generally quick to play the 'over' in most Bowl games and the New Orleans Bowl on the fast track at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome has been no exception over the years. With that being said, this has obviously been a unique season and here we have two teams that labored offensively through much of the campaign and are dealing with question marks all over the field. One thing we do know is that Georgia Southern will focus on running the football and eating clock - likely with its third-string quarterback. I'm not convinced many of the Eagles offensive drives will turn into 7's on the board, however, and Louisiana Tech's offense simply doesn't match up well with a Georgia Southern defense that ranks 33rd in the country in points allowed per play. Take the under (10*).
|12-22-20||Tulane v. Nevada +2.5||27-38||Win||100||19 h 33 m||Show|
My selection is on Nevada plus the points over Tulane at 3:30 pm et on Tuesday.
Nevada was red hot prior to its stunning loss at Hawaii on November 29th. The Wolf Pack had won five straight games to open the season including a huge victory over San Diego State in a nationally-televised game a week earlier. From there, Nevada stumbled, dropping two of its final three games overall, clearing its bandwagon in the process. So perhaps it's not all that surprising that the Wolf Pack have been installed as short underdogs in this Bowl matchup with Tulane. I still feel Nevada has plenty of upside and will be up for this game on the familiar blue turf in Boise. Tulane had an up and down season, ultimately going 6-5 overall. The Green Wave didn't do anything particularly well, although they did rank a respectable 38th in the nation in points allowed per play. The problem is, Nevada finished 10 spots ahead of them in that category. While the Green Wave did put up better offensive numbers, they also faced a schedule littered with sieve-like defenses in the AAC. Look for Nevada to finish its 2020 campaign strong. Take Nevada (10*).
|12-21-20||Steelers -14 v. Bengals||Top||17-27||Loss||-115||26 h 8 m||Show|
AFC North Game of the Year. My selection is on Pittsburgh minus the points over Cincinnati at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
I can understand bettors being hesitant to back the Steelers laying all of those points off back-to-back subpar performances against Washington and Buffalo. However, I expect to see Pittsburgh win this game in a walk as it catches a favorable 'get right' matchup against the lowly Bengals on Monday Night Football. A real key here should be the Bengals absolute inability to get after opposing quarterbacks. Particularly at this stage of his career, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger is at his best when afforded time to operate in the backfield, and he should face very little pressure against the Bengals, giving him ample time to find his dynamic wide receiving corps downfield. I'm not convinced we'll see Pittsburgh gain a whole lot of headway on the ground in this one, but that's just fine as it will force it to take to the air where it should feast on a weak Cincinnati secondary that has been torched by big plays time and time again this season. This is a nightmare matchup for the Bengals injury-ravaged offense. They'll turn to QB Ryan Finley here. If you can believe it, he represents a step down from Brandon Allen, who was unable to accomplish anything positive since standout rookie Joe Burrow went down to injury. Finley will be charged with the unenviable task of operating behind an offensive line that has been among the worst in the league at protecting the quarterback. Only one team has allowed more sacks this season. Cincinnati will simply be looking to keep this one respectable but I think it will be hard-pressed to stay inside the number. Take Pittsburgh (10*).
|12-21-20||North Texas +21 v. Appalachian State||28-56||Loss||-107||20 h 1 m||Show|
My selection is on North Texas plus the points over Appalachian State at 2:30 pm et on Monday.
Appalachian State had high hopes entering this season but I don't think playing in the Myrtle Beach Bowl was near the top of its priority list. Meanwhile, North Texas is playing with 'house money' reaching a Bowl game despite a 4-5 overall record. I look for the Mean Green Eagles to put up a fight on Monday afternoon. I do think North Texas has a path to victory in this game with a potent offense and a defense that gets after opposing quarterbacks, ranking 23rd in the nation in sack percentage this season. By contrast, Appalachian State's vaunted defense ranked just 70th in that category. Offensively, UNT is explosive, ranking 28th in the country in yards per pass attempt and 21st in yards per rush. I will admit that the Eagles faced a weaker schedule than Appalachian State but I don't believe there's a great intimidation factor at play here. In a game where both teams have reason to simply go through the motions rather than treat this as a true Bowl experience, I'll grab the generous helping of points. Take North Texas (10*).
|12-20-20||Lions v. Titans -9||Top||25-46||Win||100||23 h 16 m||Show|
NFL Blowout Game of the Month. My selection is on Tennessee minus the points over Detroit at 1 pm et on Sunday.
A lot of bettors jumped off the Titans bandwagon following their ugly home loss to the Browns two weeks ago but not us as we cashed Tennessee in last week's rout of the Jaguars. At the same time, we also faded the Lions but unfortunately just missed cashing that ticket thanks to a back-door Lions cover against Green Bay. Here, I won't hesitate to fade Detroit again as it hits the road for a poor matchup against a playoff-bound Titans squad. Tennessee enjoyed a true 'get right' performance in Jacksonville last Sunday and should enter this game brimming with confidence. With the Lions doing nothing to stop or even slow opposing ground attacks, Titans monster RB Derrick Henry should absolutely feast in this game. Meanwhile, QB Ryan Tannehill found his rhythm again in last Sunday's victory and should enjoy another solid day against an injury-ravaged Lions secondary. Ordinarily I would be fairly high on Lions veteran backup QB Chase Daniel (who is expected to start in place of an injured Matt Stafford) but right now Detroit's offense is simply too banged-up with WR Kenny Golladay still sidelined and a potential gaping hole on the offensive line with C Frank Ragnow having suffered a brutal throat injury last week. Take Tennessee (10*).
|12-20-20||Patriots +2 v. Dolphins||Top||12-22||Loss||-113||23 h 7 m||Show|
AFC East Game of the Year. My selection is on New England plus the points over Miami at 1 pm et on Sunday.
It's not easy to back the Patriots these days but I do believe they warrant support in Sunday's trip to Miami to face the Dolphins. New England's offense is obviously a shell of its former self but the good news here is that you can run on Miami. I'm confident we'll see the Pats stay run-heavy with QB Cam Newton and their stable of running backs in this one and do all they can to stay away from the Dolphins stout secondary. This is precisely the type of game where New England should be able to impose its will not only with its ground game but also with its still-underrated defense. Miami is expected to be without a couple of key cogs offensively with TE Mike Gesicki and WR Jakeem Grant banged-up and questionable to play. Even if they can go it remains to be seen whether they'll be on a snap count or overly effective. QB Tua Tagovailoa threw for over 300 yards and two touchdowns last week but completed just 28-of-48 passes and threw an interception and was sacked four times. He benefited from game flow in the fourth quarter of that contest as the Fins were behind by virtually three touchdowns and the Chiefs defense softened considerably. Few will have much interest in backing the Pats off last week's embarrassing nationally-televised blowout loss to the Rams. We'll go the contrarian route here. Take New England (10*).
|12-20-20||Bears v. Vikings OVER 47||Top||33-27||Win||100||23 h 58 m||Show|
NFC North Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Chicago and Minnesota at 1 pm et on Sunday.
I can understand the relatively low posted total here as we saw just 32 points scored the last time these two teams met back on November 16th in Chicago. However, the domed environment in Minnesota along with the steady improvement of the Bears offense with Mitchell Trubisky under center (I can't believe I'm saying that) should lead to a much higher-scoring affair here. Only four teams have allowed more touchdown passes than the Vikings this season and that's had a lot to do with the fact that they've had virtually no success getting after opposing quarterbacks. Trubisky and WR Allen Robinson in particular should have a field day on Sunday afternoon. Interestingly enough, a key to this play could be the ability of the Bears defense to minimize Vikings RB Dalvin Cook's effectiveness. That should force QB Kirk Cousins to take to the air more often than usual, which would be a good thing for us with an 'over' ticket in hand as the Bears are vulnerable against the pass and Cousins has a true dynamic duo at WR in Adam Thielen and standout rookie Justin Jefferson. This has the potential to turn into a back-and-forth, high-scoring affair. Take the over (10*).
|12-19-20||Boise State v. San Jose State +7||Top||20-34||Win||100||19 h 49 m||Show|
CFB Conference Championship Game of the Year. My selection is on San Jose State plus the points over Boise State at 4:30 pm et on Saturday.
In what has been a truly unique 2020 college football season one thing has remained the same and that's Boise State contending for a Mountain West Conference Championship. With that being said, I don't consider the Broncos to be the same juggernaut they've been in years' past. I'm not sure we can consider any of their victories this season truly impressive as they faced a rather weak conference schedule. In their lone 'step up' game they got blown out 51-17 at the hands of BYU. Meanwhile, San Jose State did nothing but impress. The Spartans exceeded most expectations by going a perfect 6-0, including impressive wins over San Diego State and Nevada. I certainly expect the Spartans to be a 'tough out' in this contest on Saturday. Only eight teams in the country have allowed fewer points per play than the Spartans this season. Boise State checks in 43rd in that category. There's no question the Broncos do have the more explosive offense but what else is new. I will point out that QB Hank Bachmeier hasn't been the same 'field general' we've become accustomed to seeing running the Broncos offense. He threw exactly one touchdown in three of his four games this season while throwing a pair of interceptions in his last two contests and was sacked eight times overall. The Spartans have the type of defense that can minimize the effectiveness of this Boise State offense, noting they rank 20th in the country in yards per rush allowed and 20th in sack percentage. Take San Jose State (10*).
|12-19-20||Bills v. Broncos OVER 49||Top||48-19||Win||100||27 h 44 m||Show|
AFC Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'over' between Buffalo and Denver at 4:30 pm et on Saturday.
I'm expecting a relatively high-scoring affair as the Bills head to Denver to face the Broncos on Saturday. The Buffalo offense is certainly catching the Denver defense as the right time with the Broncos missing numerous key cogs on that side of the football. Vic Fangio is a terrific defensive coach but he can only do so much with the limited personnel he has on hand. Missing the majority of its starting secondary, the Broncos are likely to get lit up by a red hot Josh Allen. Note that no team has allowed more rushing touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks than the Broncos this season and we know Allen can be just as much of a threat with his legs as he is with his arm. Denver showed plenty of life offensively in last week's road win over the Panthers - scoring 32 points in the process. With the Broncos offensive line getting back to full strength, QB Drew Lock could be in for another solid day statistically on Saturday. Lock has obviously become accustomed to playing from behind, which is likely to be the case again here. Look for the Broncos to do enough offensively to help this one 'over' the very reasonable total. Take the over (10*).
|12-19-20||Washington State v. Utah -10.5||Top||28-45||Win||100||24 h 0 m||Show|
Pac-12 Game of the Month. My selection is on Utah minus the points over Washington State at 1:30 pm et on Saturday.
A potential Bowl spot is on the line in this game between Washington State and Utah on Saturday afternoon. That is if either team is even interested in a Bowl game. Nevertheless, I look for the Utes to continue their upward trend with another strong performance in their home finale in this unique 2020 season. There's no question the Utes have been getting stronger with each passing game. In their lone previous home tilt they fell in blowout fashion against USC but that was after months of cancellations and no previous game action. We saw Utah put it all together in a 38-21 road win over a good Colorado squad last week and I look for it to build off that performance here. We were actually on Washington State last week before its game against Cal got canceled due to Covid issues. That leaves the Cougars in a tough spot here trying to once again get amped up for a game that really doesn't mean a whole lot in the grand scheme of things (again, Bowl eligibility doesn't mean quite as much this season with many teams opting out). Cougars QB Jayden De Laura has shown some flashes of brilliance but has also been sacked five times and tossed three interceptions in three games. RB Max Borghi might see game action for the first time this season after a banner 2019 campaign but it remains to be seen how effective he can be against a very stout Utes run defense. Note that Utah checks into this game ranked 55th in the nation in points allowed per play. Take Utah (10*).
|12-19-20||Oklahoma v. Iowa State UNDER 58.5||Top||27-21||Win||100||23 h 27 m||Show|
Big 12 Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Oklahoma and Iowa State at 12 noon et on Saturday.
This isn't the first time we've played the 'under' in the Big 12 Championship Game. It seems that on an annual basis most bettors are comfortable backing the 'over' in this contest played on the fast track at AT&T Stadium. Note that only one of the last five Big 12 title games have totaled more than 58 points. Of course, Oklahoma is a perennial Big 12 title contender having appeared in this game in seven of the last eight years. I consider this year's Sooners squad to be a little different. I certainly don't put QB Spencer Rattler in the same category as the previous three players to QB the Sooners in this game, Jalen Hurts, Kyler Murray and Baker Mayfield. Note that Rattler has thrown for more than two touchdowns just once in his last five games. He topped out at 332 passing yards in those games, topping 300 yards only twice. Also note that he's been sacked seven times in the last two contests. Obviously the Sooners still boast a potent offense but they're running into a tough opponent in Iowa State here. The Cyclones have been a largely underrated commodity for much of this season and check in having allowed just 26 points over their last three games combined. Iowa State checks in 29th in the nation in points allowed per play. Meanwhile, Oklahoma has also been stout defensively, ranking 37th in the country in points allowed per play. While the Cyclones have had some breakout performances offensively, they're not what I would consider a juggernaut in that regard. QB Brock Purdy hasn't attempted more than 36 passes in a game since back on October 10th against Texas Tech. When these two teams met back on October 24th we saw a wild 37-30 game won by Iowa State. That game was actually fairly defensive until a late fourth quarter scoring flurry that saw three touchdowns in the game's final eight minutes. Take the under (10*).
|12-18-20||UAB v. Marshall UNDER 42.5||Top||22-13||Win||100||57 h 11 m||Show|
CFB Conference Championship Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between UAB and Marshall at 7 pm et on Friday.
This is certainly a low total by today's college football standards but much like our play on the 'under' in last Saturday's Wisconsin-Iowa matchup, I believe it is warranted. UAB shook off the rust after not playing for over a month due to Covid protocols, holding on for a 21-16 win but non-cover against Rice last week. The Blazers are expected to get some reinforcements on both sides of the ball this week with their entire team testing negative for Covid earlier this week. That means they'll have their tremendous stable of running backs back on the field. While that may help them extend their offensive drives in this game, it's certainly worth noting that Marshall has been extremely stingy against opposing running backs this season. In fact, the Thundering Herd rank tied for top spot in the nation in rush yards allowed per attempt (along with Georgia) at a measly 2.3. Only Cincinnati has allowed fewer points per play than Marshall this season. Of course, UAB can hold its own in that department as well with a loaded, experienced defense that ranks 21st in the nation in points per play allowed. The Blazers check in an impressive 16th in the country in yards allowed per game. I don't have a great deal of confidence in either starting quarterback in this matchup to be honest. I really think that both teams will enter this game with a focus on running the football, controlling the clock and letting their defenses take care of the rest. Expect Tyler Johnston and Grant Wells to assume dreaded 'game manager' roles with a Conference Championship on the line. There will be a few big plays, but I'm confident the game ultimately slides 'under' the total. Take the under (10*).
|12-17-20||Chargers +3.5 v. Raiders||Top||30-27||Win||100||36 h 19 m||Show|
TNF Game of the Month. My selection is on Los Angeles plus the points over Las Vegas at 8:20 pm et on Thursday.
I'll grab the points with the Chargers on Thursday night as they head to Las Vegas looking to win back-to-back games for the first time this season. They're catching the Raiders at the right time as Las Vegas has dropped three of its last four games, with its lone victory over that stretch coming by way of a last second hail mary against the still-winless Jets. With Rod Marinelli taking over the defensive reins there's hope that the Raiders can turn things around on that side of the football but playing on a short week, with a number of key cogs banged-up it's highly unlikely we'll see much improvement. Meanwhile, on offense the Raiders continue to trudge along with RB Josh Jacobs less than 100% healthy and now without deep threat WR Henry Ruggs as he was placed on the Covid list. While Ruggs hasn't been a true gamebreaker this season, he does have the ability to stretch out opposing defenses and will be one less downfield threat for the Chargers defense to worry about on Thursday night. Los Angeles is mired in another disappointing season under seemingly clueless head coach Anthony Lynn. With that being said, the Chargers are off a 20-17 win over the Falcons last Sunday with their defense showing signs of turning the corner with Joey Bosa back on the field in recent weeks. There's a lot to like when it comes to the Chargers offense, especially now that RB Austin Ekeler is back. He led the team in rushing and receiving in last week's victory and should be the focal point of the offense again here. This is another showcase game for rookie QB Justin Herbert and I certainly feel he has more upside than Raiders QB Derek Carr at this point. Take Los Angeles (10*).
|12-14-20||Ravens -3 v. Browns||Top||47-42||Win||100||24 h 14 m||Show|
MNF Game of the Year. My selection is on Baltimore minus the points over Cleveland at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
I believe this line will prove far too short as the Ravens look to beat up on the division rival Browns once again on Monday night. Baltimore enjoyed a perfect 'get right' matchup against the Cowboys last Tuesday night, cruising to a lopsided victory. That game gave all of those Ravens that missed time due to Covid protocols to shake off the rust and get back into game action leading into this key showdown with the Browns. Baltimore is virtually back at full strength now with TE Mark Andrews a key piece returning to the offense on Monday night in Cleveland. I look for the Ravens passing game in particular to feast on a Browns pass defense that will once again be without its anchor CB Denzel Ward. You certainly can't sleep on Cleveland these days as the Browns have undoubtedly exceeded expectations and played excellent football this season. But the fact remains they've faced a rather soft schedule and while last week's victory in Tennessee was impressive, QB Baker Mayfield is still best-suited as a game manager but I'm not sure he'll be afforded that opportunity here should the Browns fall behind (as I expect). The Ravens have been tough on opposing running backs and get healthier on the defensive side of the football this week. Look for them to do a better job than most at containing the dynamic RB duo of Hunt and Chubb and take the Browns out of their preferred gameplan. This is a showcase game for Ravens QB Lamar Jackson after failing to perform well in a number of spotlight games this season. I look for him to come up with one of his best efforts of the season. Take Baltimore (10*).
|12-13-20||Packers -8 v. Lions||Top||31-24||Loss||-105||23 h 58 m||Show|
NFC North Game of the Year. My selection is on Green Bay minus the points over Detroit at 4:25 pm et on Sunday.
This is a layup for the Packers, even with the Lions riding high off last week's upset win over the Bears in Chicago. Green Bay cruised to a win over the Eagles last Sunday and now hit the road for a very friendly division matchup in the Motor City. Detroit's defense is suddenly injury-ravaged, sure to miss CB Desmond Trufant in this game. We've yet to see the Lions shut down any opposing ground attacks this season, which really opens the door for a monster performance from the Packers multi-dimensional offensive attack. On the flip side, the Packers are one team that Lions QB Matt Stafford has never really figured out. With WR Kenny Golladay still sidelined, there's little reason to believe Stafford can suddenly come to life against the Packers here. While Green Bay has allowed opposing running backs to gain plenty of ground, that will likely only serve to bait Detroit into a run-first offensive gameplan here, which could lead to some long drives, but few that put 7's on the board. Take Green Bay (10*).
|12-13-20||Saints v. Eagles +8||21-24||Win||100||23 h 52 m||Show|
My selection is on Philadelphia plus the points over New Orleans at 4:25 pm et on Sunday.
While most see this as a clear continuation of the Saints red hot run, I see it as a letdown spot coming off last week's divisional road win over the Falcons in Atlanta. In fact, this will be New Orelans' third straight road game in as many weeks - setting this up as a sneaky-tough spot against what is sure to be a highly-motivated Eagles squad coming off last week's 'close but no cigar' loss and no-cover against the Packers. Philadelphia will start Jalen Hurts at quarterback in what could only be considered a spark-inducing move at this point of the season. While Hurts draws a very tough matchup here, I do expect the Eagles to rally around him the rest of the season (assuming he holds onto the starting job). Saints QB Taysom Hill suddenly has a bit of pressure on him with Drew Brees' imminent return. While I won't go so far as to say the Eagles win this game outright, I do look for them to stay inside the number. Take Philadelphia (10*).
|12-13-20||Jets v. Seahawks -14.5||3-40||Win||100||23 h 46 m||Show|
My selection is on Seattle minus the points over New York at 4:05 pm et on Sunday.
We won by fading the Seahawks in their upset loss to the Giants last week (we also cashed the 'under' in that game) but I won't hesitate to go the other way and back Seattle laying all of those points on Sunday afternoon against the hapless Jets. New York is in full letdown mode here after inexplicably blowing a prime opportunity to win perhaps its only game of the season last Sunday against Las Vegas. Now the Jets head to the west coast without a number of key cogs on offense - and don't figure to be gift-wrapped this contest the way they were by the Raiders last week. Seahawks QB Russell Wilson finally catches a break after facing a murderer's row of defenses in recent weeks. Note that the Jets rank in the league's bottom-five in quarterback hit-rate and don't figure to put Wilson under much duress on Sunday afternoon. It's almost unthinkable to lay this many points in an NFL games these days but in this particular spot, I'm confident the Seahawks can run away and hide against a Jets squad that is quite simply playing out the string. Take Seattle (10*).
|12-13-20||Cowboys v. Bengals UNDER 43.5||30-7||Win||100||20 h 13 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Dallas and Cincinnati at 1 pm et on Sunday.
I'm not sure where the points will come from in this bottom of the barrel matchup between the Cowboys and Bengals. Dallas' offense is obviously a shell of its former self. While it does draw a favorable matchup against a very beatable Bengals defense here, I'm not convinced that QB Andy Dalton is capable of taking advantage with an injury-ravaged offensive line trying to keep him clean. It is worth noting that while the Bengals defense has struggled as a whole, that unit has actually held its own against opposing wide receivers - obviously a strength of the Cowboys offense. Cincinnati has gotten absolutely nothing done since Brandon Allen took over the starting quarterback job. Regardless who is under center for this game, I don't expect a breakout performance. The Bengals will be without a key cog on the offensive line in this one in LT Jonah Williams, opening the door for a solid performance from the Cowboys defense. Take the under (10*).
|12-13-20||Cardinals v. Giants UNDER 47||26-7||Win||100||20 h 5 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Arizona and New York at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This total has settled considerably higher than I expected given the state of both teams. We won with the Giants and the 'under' in their upset win in Seattle last week. While there's a chance we see a big letdown here and their defense struggles, I believe we're looking at a large enough sample size now where their 'D' has excelled. Keep in mind, the Arizona offense has been struggling and this doesn't look like an ideal turnaround spot traveling across the country for an early start game in New Jersey. I do think the Cards can have some success in their short passing game, but that should only serve to create some long, clock-churning drives that may or may not end with 7's on the board. The Giants know who they are at this point. A run-first offense that relies on controlling the football and allowing its defense to take care of most of the heavy lifting. Take the under (10*).
|12-13-20||Titans v. Jaguars OVER 52||31-10||Loss||-110||20 h 1 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Tennessee and Jacksonville at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This game has real shootout potential with the Titans looking to bounce back against what most believe is a tanking Jags squad. There's little reason to expect anything other than an onslaught from the Titans offense here coming off an uncharacteristic mistake-prone performance against a good Browns defense last Sunday. We did see the Tennessee offense come to life in the second half of that contest (once it was completely out of hand). I do think we'll see some carry-over here, with RB Derrick Henry likely to run wild and WR A.J. Brown in line for a massive bounce-back against a hapless Jags secondary. Offensively, Jacksonville has somewhat shockingly held its own since journeyman QB Mike Glennon took over under center. Few pass defenses have been as bad as the Titans' in recent weeks and Glennon is poised to take advantage with a relatively healthy receiving corps. Add in dynamic RB James Robinson and I expect the Jags to put up some points in this matchup. Take the over (10*).
|12-13-20||Titans -7 v. Jaguars||31-10||Win||100||20 h 49 m||Show|
My selection is on Tennessee minus the points over Jacksonville at 1 pm et on Sunday.
Backing the Titans in a prime bounce-back spot off last week's beatdown at home against the Browns is not an overly difficult decision. Two of Tennessee's best offensive pieces are in line for big round performances - namely RB Derrick Henry and WR A.J. Brown - off last week's no-show (game script of course had something to do with Henry's awful day). Note that opponents are rushing for north of 150 yards per game against Jacksonville this season. While I do think the Jags can score some points in this game, I'm not convinced they can keep up with the Titans for four quarters, nor do I believe they'll be able to come up with enough big plays on defense late to get the Tennessee offense off the field. This is a key spot for Tennessee to turn the tide and given its success against the Jags over the years, there's little reason to expect its run of dominance to come to an end. Take Tennessee (10*).
|12-12-20||Wisconsin v. Iowa UNDER 42||Top||7-28||Win||100||28 h 9 m||Show|
CFB Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Wisconsin and Iowa at 3:30 pm et on Saturday.
I'll back the 'under' in this Big Ten showdown on Saturday afternoon. This game pits a matchup of two of the nation's best defensive teams while at the same time two teams that boast inconsistent, ball control, clock-churning offensive attacks. Last year we saw 46 total points in this same matchup but that game also featured a 250+ yard rushing performance from current Indianapolis Colts RB Jonathan Taylor. Were it not for his success that game easily could have been far lower-scoring. Note that the Badgers and Hawkeyes have stayed true to character here in 2020, combining fierce defense with conservative offense and the formula has worked with varied success. The Badgers and Hawkeyes check in fourth and fifth respectively in terms of points allowed per play. No team allows fewer offensive touchdowns per game than Wisconsin and while Iowa checks in a less impressive 23rd in the nation in that category, we're talking about 127 qualifying teams. The Badgers ran up the score in their first two games against Illinois and Michigan this season but that had more to do with their opponent's defensive ineptitude than anything else. Note that they've yet to have a 100-yard rusher in a game this season while QB Graham Mertz has thrown for just 559 yards and three touchdowns over his last three games. Ball security needs to be a focal point this week as he has tossed four picks in the last two games. With that in mind, look for Mertz to be relegated to a true game manager role here. Iowa's offense has been a little more consistent but will face a tough challenge against the Badgers defense this week. We've seen the Hawkeyes feast on some weak Big Ten defenses this season but also struggle against the likes of Purdue, Northwestern and Nebraska - only one of which I would consider a truly elite defensive squad (Northwestern). QB Spencer Petras has thrown more than a single touchdown just once in seven games - that coming against a hapless Illinois defense last week. I suspect both teams will be content with turning this one into a slugfest. While we're dealing with a low posted total, it could be even lower in my opinion. Take the under (10*).
|12-12-20||Utah v. Colorado UNDER 48||38-21||Loss||-110||23 h 30 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Utah and Colorado at 12 noon et on Saturday.
We've cashed a couple of 'under' tickets with Utah already this season and I won't hesitate to go back to the well with the same play here. Colorado has gotten off to a perfect 4-0 start to the season on the strength of a tremendous ground game. Last week RB Jarek Broussard ran for an incredible 301 yards on 25 carries. That was against Arizona, however. He'll face a much tougher challenge against a Utah defense that has been stout against the run, allowing just north of 104 rush yards per game. On the flip side, the Utes offense has looked disjointed through three games. Perhaps that was to be expected given all the practice time they missed due to Covid protocols, which prevented them from starting the season even close to on time. Utah did score 30 points in last week's victory over Oregon State but didn't actually find the end zone in that game until just over three minutes remained in the first half. That was against a below average Oregon State defense. The Utes will face a tougher defensive opponent here as Colorado has allowed just 23 points over its last two games. Take the under (10*).
|12-11-20||Nevada v. San Jose State UNDER 59.5||20-30||Win||100||14 h 34 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Nevada and San Jose State at 10 pm et on Friday.
This is obviously a big game with a spot in the Mountain West Championship on the line as Nevada makes the short trip to Las Vegas to face San Jose State, with the Spartans having been displaced from their home to play this game at Sam Boyd Stadium. The betting marketplace has yielded a high posted total for this one - clearly expecting plenty of offensive fireworks. I'm just not convinced that will be the case. Nevada is coming off a 37-26 win over Fresno State - the third time it has scored exactly 37 points in a game this season, matching its season-high. QB Carson Strong went off in that contest, throwing five touchdowns. Keep in mind he had topped out at three passing scores in his last five games. This is a good offensive team but perhaps a little one-dimensional. The Spartans don't boast an elite secondary but I do expect that unit to hold its own against a somewhat predictable Wolf Pack offense. San Jose State put up 35 points in last week's victory, but that came against Hawaii, noting that the Warriors were in a clear letdown spot off an upset win over Nevada. The Spartans ground attack ran wild in that contest with RB Tyler Nevens gaining 152 yards and scoring a trio of touchdowns. Note that Nevens had topped out at 45 rushing yards in a game previously this season. Likewise, Kairee Robinson ran for 111 yards after previously reaching a season-high of 40 rushing yards in a game. If you check out my free play on this game you'll see that I'm supporting Nevada, but I'm also calling for a lower-scoring affair than most expect. Take the under (10*).
|12-10-20||Patriots v. Rams UNDER 45||3-24||Win||100||23 h 57 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between New England and Los Angeles at 8:20 pm et on Thursday.
I look for both of these offenses to slow-play this game from start to finish. When the Patriots have been at their best this season, we've seen their offense churn out long, clock-eating drives with QB Cam Newton enjoying plenty of success on the ground. I'm just not convinced they can finish many drives with 7's on the board against an elite Rams defense. Meanwhile, there's little reason to have much faith in Rams QB Jared Goff right now, even off a much-needed victory in Arizona last week. Goff was terrific in that game, throwing for 351 yards but he needed 47 pass attempts to get there. I don't expect to see him come close to approaching that number on Thursday. Los Angeles will respect New England's defense and employ a ball and clock control offense here - at least that's my expectation. Look for this total to prove too high. Take the under (10*).
|12-10-20||Florida Atlantic v. Southern Miss UNDER 44||Top||31-45||Loss||-110||21 h 57 m||Show|
C-USA Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'under' between Florida Atlantic and Southern Miss at 6:30 pm et on Thursday.
I'll back the 'under' as FAU and Southern Miss close out their respective regular seasons on Thursday night. This is a major flat spot for the Owls as they suffered a deflating 20-3 loss to Georgia Southern - snapping their four-game winning streak - last time out. With Marshall's game getting canceled this week, the Owls now have virtually no shot at earning a spot in the C-USA Championship Game. For Southern Miss, this game brings a merciful end to what has been a highly disappointing 2020 campaign. It all started with a 32-21 loss to South Alabama and never really turned around from there. While there were some positive signs from the Eagles offense earlier in the season, those disappeared down the stretch with USM scoring just 33 points in its last three games against FBS opposition. Against a strong FAU defense, with nothing but pride to play for on Thursday night, I'm not expecting a sudden turnaround from the Eagles offense. Take the under (10*).
|12-08-20||Cowboys v. Ravens UNDER 45.5||17-34||Loss||-110||10 h 39 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Dallas and Baltimore at 8:05 pm et on Tuesday.
It's becoming less and less difficult to play NFL 'unders' as this unique Covid-tinged 2020 season goes on. Here, I'll go 'under' the total as the injury-riddled Cowboys - shells of their former selves - travel to Baltimore to face a disjointed Ravens squad due to injuries and otherwise. Dallas has very little going for it right now. Its offensive line is missing a number of key cogs and unlikely to do a good job of protecting veteran QB Andy Dalton or opening up holes for struggling RB Ezekiel Elliott on Tuesday night. On the flip side, the Ravens offense just hasn't worked with any consistency this year - a far cry from the unit that terrorized the league with a unique run-first attack last season. QB Lamar Jackson is expected to be back under center but he'll be operating with a less than healthy supporting cast. The tight end is generally a focal point in the Ravens passing game but their down to ineffective third-string journeyman Luke Willson now. The good news is, Baltimore is expected to have its full compliment of running backs on the field. Expect a concentration on moving the football by land as they eat clock and ultimately shorten this 'win and move on' type of affair. Take the under (10*).
|12-07-20||Washington Football Team v. Steelers -6.5||Top||23-17||Loss||-102||10 h 4 m||Show|
NFL Non-Conference Game of the Month. My selection is on Pittsburgh minus the points over Washington at 5 pm et on Monday.
We played the 'under' in the Steelers odd Wednesday afternoon matchup with a depleted Ravens squad last week but will shift gears and back the Black and Gold on Monday, as they host a suddenly-surging Washington Football Team. There's no question the Steelers are dealing with some key absences with edge rusher Bud Dupree the latest key cog to go down to injury or otherwise. RB James Conner is also expected to miss this game after a positive Covid test. With all of that being said, I like the matchup here. Pittsburgh is playing on a short week but does have the benefit of staying home. Washington has won three of its last five games overall but I think it's important to consider the way its schedule has played out this season. It opened 1-5, including a number of blowout losses against superior opponents including Arizona, Cleveland, Baltimore and Los Angeles (Rams). Since October 25th, the Football Team has faced the Cowboys, Giants, Lions, Bengals and Cowboys again, going 3-2 as mentioned earlier. While I do like some of the pieces Washington has in place, most notably WR Terry McLaurin and RB Antonio Gibson, not to mention a terrific defense. Here, however, I expect it to fall behind early, which would take it away from its preferred gameplan, which involves keeping QB Alex Smith in a game manager role. I look for the Steelers to force Washington to take to the air in this contest, which should severely hamper the Football Team's prospects of staying competitive in this game. Take Pittsburgh (10*).
|12-06-20||Broncos v. Chiefs OVER 50.5||Top||16-22||Loss||-109||71 h 38 m||Show|
SNF Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Denver and Kansas City at 8:20 pm et on Sunday.
I'm expecting a high-scoring affair as the Chiefs should ultimately have their way with the weary, injury-plagued Broncos on Sunday night - just as they did in their earlier matchup this season. Denver limps into this contest off a beatdown at the hands of the Saints last Sunday. Of course, the Broncos didn't have a hope of competing in that game with little-used wide receiver Kendall Hinton starting at quarterback. Here, they'll get QB Drew Lock back on the field and while he will likely struggle to take care of the football against an aggressive Chiefs defense, I do have some faith in him to orchestrate some scoring drives once this contest gets out of hand. It's not as if Kansas City possesses a shut down defensive unit - they're been vulnerable against the pass this season, struggling in particular against the tight end position and Denver has a sneaky-good one in Noah Fant. Likewise, Kansas City has had a tough time defending the run, allowing just north of 4.5 yards per rush. I don't need to say a lot about the Chiefs explosive offense. What you see is what you get as QB Patrick Mahomes is playing some of the best football of his career. The Chiefs should have little trouble exposing an injury-ravaged Broncos defense that gives up over 4.8 yards per rush and has been tagged for four touchdowns to WR Tyreek Hill alone over the last three matchups between these AFC West foes. As an added bonus, we can likely anticipate some short fields for the Chiefs offense thanks to their opportunistic defense taking advantage of a mistake-prone Drew Lock. Take the over (10*).
|12-06-20||Giants +11 v. Seahawks||17-12||Win||100||9 h 48 m||Show|
My selection is on New York plus the points over Seattle at 4:05 pm et on Sunday.
I'll grab the generous helping of points with the Giants as they head to the Pacific Northwest to challenge the surging Seahawks on Sunday afternoon. This line shifted once news came out that Giants QB Daniel Jones would miss this game, with journeyman Colt McCoy starting in his place. While my hopes aren't high for McCoy in this tough matchup, the G-Men have become a run-first operation anyway and I'm confident their defense can hold up well enough to keep the Seahawks within reach on Sunday. Seattle's offense has been doing just enough to win in recent weeks - no longer looking like the explosive unit we saw earlier in the season. This is a sneaky-tough matchup against a Giants defense that has been playing some of its best football and has proven to be an opportunistic group, as evidenced by last week's game-clinching fumble recovery in the final minute against Cincinnati. We've got the Giants going from nearly touchdown favorites a week ago to double-digit underdogs this week - with their playoff hopes still alive. Take New York (10*).
|12-06-20||Giants v. Seahawks UNDER 47||Top||17-12||Win||100||9 h 37 m||Show|
NFC Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'under' between New York and Seattle at 4:05 pm et on Sunday.
It's not easy betting NFL 'unders' these days but we won with the 'under' in the Seahawks most recent game - Monday's 23-17 win in Philadelphia and Seattle has actually seen its last three games stay 'under' the total. Here, I'm anticipating another relatively low-scoring affair as the Seahawks host the Giants. New York will be without QB Daniel Jones in this game, which means we should see an increased focus on running the football and churning out long drives in an effort to keep the Seahawks offense off the field (and protect mistake-prone veteran QB Colt McCoy). I'm high on the Giants defense and believe they're capable of rising to the occasion again here, especially given Seattle's recent shift to a more conservative gameplan after Russell Wilson's early November struggles. The Seahawks have been doing just enough on offense to win games in recent weeks, and letting their defense take care of the rest - a defense that has certainly been playing some of its best football of the season. Take the under (10*).
|12-06-20||Jaguars v. Vikings -10||24-27||Loss||-110||18 h 35 m||Show|
My selection is on Minnesota minus the points over Jacksonville at 1 pm et on Sunday.
I'll lay the points with the Vikings as they draw a favorable matchup against the lowly Jaguars on Sunday afternoon. Jacksonville's defense wasn't good to begin with and now they're dealing with a number of key injuries. With no semblance of a pass rush whatsoever, I look for Vikes QB Kirk Cousins to carve them up on Sunday afternoon. Meanwhile, Jacksonville got shredded for over seven yards per rush by the Browns and their run-first offense last Sunday. We can count on more of the same here as Minnesota RB Dalvin Cook will be salivating at thought of this matchup. Jags QB Mike Glennon did a nice job of nearly leading them all the way back against Cleveland last Sunday but I'm not convinced he can do enough to keep them within the number here. Take Minnesota (10*).
|12-05-20||Oregon State v. Utah -11||Top||24-30||Loss||-110||38 h 32 m||Show|
CFB Blowout Game of the Week. My selection is on Utah minus the points over Oregon State at 10:30 pm et on Saturday.
Oregon State is undoubtedly in for a letdown this week as it travels to Utah to face what is sure to be a highly-motivated 0-2 Utes squad. Of course, the Beavers staged a huge upset win over in-state rival Oregon last Friday night, rallying to win by a 41-38 score in one of the wildest games of the season. Standout RB Jermar Jefferson went off in that game, rushing for 226 yards and two touchdowns including an 82-yard TD run. If there's one thing the Utes have done well through two games, it's limit their opponents ability to consistently run the football. They've allowed just 181 rushing yards against USC and Washington. While they're not going to eliminate Jefferson entirely, I do believe they can do a much better job than Oregon did of keeping his big play ability in check. Offensively, the Utes have obviously faced a tough situation, with the start of their season delayed due to Covid protocols and their practice time limited. We did see them do some good things in the first half against Washington last week - jumping ahead by a 21-0 score. I'm sure the Utes offense and defense both took the second half collapse against the Huskies personally and we'll see a much sharper effort from start to finish this Saturday night. This is a well-coached Utah squad that should be able to put the disappointment of the 0-2 start behind it and deliver a convincing win over a very beatable Beavers team on Saturday night. Take Utah (10*).
|12-05-20||Florida -17.5 v. Tennessee||Top||31-19||Loss||-108||31 h 42 m||Show|
SEC Game of the Month. My selection is on Florida minus the points over Tennessee at 3:30 pm et on Saturday.
I'm still not sure the Gators are getting the respect they deserve as all they've done since dropping a 41-38 decision at Texas A&M back on October 10th is reel off five straight wins by 24, 16, 28, 21 and 24-point margins. Now they head to Rocky Top to take on a Tennessee squad that started strong but is now mired in another lost season. I expect Florida to win in a rout. Tennessee has actually played just once since the second week of November, that being a 30-17 loss to Auburn. With QB Jarrett Guarantano struggling as badly as any quarterback in the SEC right now (47-for-76 passing for 448 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions last four games) the Vols will be hard-pressed to find much success in the likely event that they fall behind in this game. Yes, the Vols ground game has been effective but that's only because opposing defenses have employed a run-funnel strategy against them. Florida failed to cover the spread by the narrowest of margins against Kentucky last week as it essentially moved on to this week's game in the fourth quarter of that contest. Here, I anticipate the Gators keeping their foot on the gas for four quarters. Take Florida (10*).
|12-05-20||Nebraska v. Purdue OVER 62.5||37-27||Win||100||27 h 25 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Nebraska and Purdue at 12 noon et on Saturday.
I expect plenty of offensive fireworks as the Huskers and Boilermakers do battle in early action on Saturday. We actually missed the mark with a big play on the 'over' in Nebraska's last game - a 26-20 loss to Iowa that certainly appeared to be headed way over the number before the scoring fizzled in the fourth quarter. This is obviously a different matchup for the Huskers as they face a bad Boilers defense that doesn't get after the quarterback. Expect the Huskers QB duo of Martinez and McCaffrey to have a field day hooking up with WR Wan'Dale Robinson. On the flip side, the Boilers should enjoy plenty of offensive success as well. All WR Rondale Moore has done since returning to the field two games ago is haul in 22 catches for nearly 200 yards while also adding 25 yards and a score on the ground. QB Jack Plummer has done a nice job since taking over for an injured Aidan O'Connell. The Huskers held up reasonably well against an average Iowa offense last Friday but I look for them to struggle to keep Purdue out of the end zone on Saturday. Take the over (10*).
|12-03-20||Air Force v. Utah State OVER 51||Top||35-7||Loss||-110||24 h 47 m||Show|
Mountain West Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Air Force and Utah State at 9:30 pm et on Thursday.
We won with Utah State in its 'upset' win over New Mexico last week but I'm going to switch gears and back the 'over' as the Aggies host 2-2 Air Force on Thursday night. I was high on Utah State's defense only due to the matchup last Thursday as New Mexico's offense had been as punchless as they come. While the Aggies certainly did enough defensively to win that game, we did see some serious cracks, especially after they were able to build a big third quarter lead. When they had a chance to really put the game to bed, they couldn't get their defense off the field as the Lobos went on a pair of touchdown drives that got them back into the game. Utah State hasn't done a good job defending the run this season and now faces Air Force's dominant option-based ground attack. I don't see the Aggies faring particularly well. Meanwhile, the Air Force defense has taken a step back after ranking near the top of the Mountain West Conference in most categories a year ago. That's not a surprise given all the turnover to their roster on that side of the football. While the Falcons are coming off a shutout victory, that came at the expense of aforementioned New Mexico. I'm willing to take a flyer on the Utah State offense here after QB Andrew Peasley stepped in and showed he could be a dual threat in last week's victory. While some regression should be in order, he'll by no means be facing an elite defense. Take the over (10*).
|12-02-20||Ravens v. Steelers UNDER 42.5||Top||14-19||Win||100||8 h 51 m||Show|
AFC North Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between Baltimore and Pittsburgh at 3:40 pm et on Wednesday.
This is obviously one of the more unique scheduling situations we've seen in NFL history and I'm anticipating a bit of a disjointed affair from both sides. The Ravens are obviously decimated with injuries and Covid-related absences. Robert Griffin III will get the start at quarterback and I expect him to serve as little more than a game manager in this one. With the Steelers struggling to slow down opposing ground games in recent weeks, I do believe Baltimore can have some success running the football, but that might only lead to long, clock-churning drives rather than 7's on the board. On the flip side, the Steelers always seem to have a tendency to play down to the level of their opposition and this is a division rivalry game after all. I'm not convinced we'll see the Pittsburgh offense operating at peak efficiency. Even with RB James Conner sidelined, I think we'll see the Steelers make a concerted effort to pound the football and ultimately shorten this game. It really is a 'win and move on' type of situation for Mike Tomlin's squad as far as I'm concerned. Take the under (10*).
|11-30-20||Seahawks v. Eagles UNDER 49||Top||23-17||Win||100||12 h 42 m||Show|
MNF Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'under' between Seattle and Philadelphia at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
While I'm not expecting a defensive slugfest in this game (those type of affairs are virtually non-existent in today's NFL) I do believe the total will prove to be too high. Seattle's offense has taken a step back in the last couple of games and while this does look like a favorable matchup at first glance, a deeper looks shows the Eagles have proven capable of limiting the big play potential of opposing wide receivers while also playing tough run defense, giving up just 3.4 yards per rush. I believe we'll see Seahawks QB Russell Wilson orchestrate plenty of long, clock-churning drives in this game. Note that Seattle was the best 'over' bet in the league earlier in the season but has now seen its last two games stay 'under' the total. Philadelphia's offense continues to be hampered by injuries on the offensive line and a largely ineffective QB in Carson Wentz. The Eagles will trot out their eighth different offensive line combination in 11 games on Monday night. Head coach Doug Pederson has also alluded to the fact that rookie backup QB Jalen Hurts could see more playing time and I'm not sure that's a positive for an offense that is trying to find some continuity. Note that the Seahawks pass rush has stepped up in recent weeks, recording 16 sacks in their last four games. Wentz has certainly been prone to drive-stalling plays (no quarterback has taken more sacks this season) and I believe we could see more of that tonight, with Philadelphia moving the football but not finishing drives with 7's on the board. Take the under (10*).
|11-29-20||49ers v. Rams UNDER 44.5||Top||23-20||Win||100||24 h 30 m||Show|
NFC West Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'under' between San Francisco and Los Angeles at 4:05 pm et on Sunday.
We missed the mark with the 'under' in the Rams last game - a 27-24 win over Tampa Bay on Monday night. That was somewhat of an uncharacteristic breakout performance from the Los Angeles offense, but with the Bucs defense suddenly slumping, perhaps it shouldn't have come as a surprise. Here, the Rams go up against a familiar divisional foe in the 49ers and while San Francisco continues to play without a number of key cogs on the defensive side of the football, that unit has still managed to hold its own, allowing just over 3.5 yards per rush and limiting the big play potential of opposing offenses. Meanwhile, the Niners offense is a shell of its former self with a number of key players sidelined due to Covid or otherwise. We may see the Niners make some headway on the ground in this one but that actually plays into our favor as we could see them grind out some clock-churning drives, but perhaps not be able to finish many of those drives with 7's on the board. You'd be hard-pressed to find a defense that minimizes the impact of opposing wide receivers more than the Rams. Take the under (10*).
|11-29-20||Giants v. Bengals OVER 44||Top||19-17||Loss||-110||27 h 6 m||Show|
NFL Non-Division Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'over' between New York and Cincinnati at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This is a smash spot for the Giants offense (now that's something we don't say very often) as they return from their bye week to face a Bengals defense that has been blown up time and time again this season. Only three teams have recorded fewer sacks and five fewer quarterback hits than Cincinnati this season which should really open things up for promising but mistake-prone Giants quarterback Daniel Jones. While the G-Men by no means boast an elite ground attack they should have little trouble running wild against a Bengals defense that allows well over five yards per rush this season. Of course, few are expecting much from the Cincinnati offense now that super rookie Joe Burrow is sidelined for the year. With that being said, I believe the Bengals have a bit of upside here as they catch New York in a possible letdown or even lookahead spot now that Burrow is out. Word is that Brandon Allen will get the call-up from the practice squad to start this game. I prefer Allen over backup Ryan Finley, noting that Allen did see some game action with the Broncos last year and has some history with Bengals head coach Zac Taylor from their days together with the Rams. It's not as if Allen is devoid of any weapons as WR Tyler Boyd remains a home run threat at any given time. One thing I don't think we'll see is Cincinnati go on long, clock-churning drives in this game, which plays into our hands with the 'over'. Take the over (10*).
|11-29-20||Cardinals v. Patriots OVER 48.5||17-20||Loss||-110||22 h 42 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Arizona and New England at 1 pm et on Sunday.
I think we're dealing with a reasonable total here only due to the Patriots inability to push last week's game in Houston 'over' the total - a game where we lost a big play on the 'over'. I won't hesitate to go back to the well with the same play here as many of the same ideas apply. The Patriots have done nothing to slow opposing quarterbacks in recent weeks, with virtually no pass rush and growing holes in their secondary. That should open the door for Cards dual-threat QB Kyler Murray who is coming off a much needed bye week to heal up his injured shoulder. The Pats went a little too conservative in last week's eventual loss to the Texans but I believe we'll see them open things up a little more back at home against the Cards. Arizona is dealing with a number of key injuries on the defensive side of the football, most notably missing former Pats standout DL Chandler Jones. Even if the Pats elect to lean on their ground attack, they should have little trouble dicing up a Cards defense that got torched on the ground by the Seahawks the last time we saw them in action. We don't need a true shootout to cash this ticket but we might just get one anyway. Take the over (10*).
|11-28-20||Utah v. Washington UNDER 48||Top||21-24||Win||100||10 h 26 m||Show|
Pac-12 Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'under' between Utah and Washington at 7:30 pm et on Saturday.
We cashed a free play on the 'under' in Utah's season-opening loss to USC last Saturday and I won't hesitate to go back to the well with the same play here as the Utes head to Washington to face the Huskies. All things considered, Utah held up well defensively against the Trojans last week, allowing just 357 total yards while recording three sacks and forcing a pair of turnovers, including one they returned for a touchdown. Offensively, the Utes will need some time to mesh with a lot of new pieces in place this year. This is a tough second matchup against a good Huskies defense that comes in off a bye week due to a Covid-related cancellation last Saturday. Washington has allowed just 48 points through two games this season but that includes a punt return touchdown against Oregon State. Note that in the Huskies most recent game they actually pitched a shutout until the fourth quarter against Arizona. Offensively, Washington isn't all that threatening. It took advantage of a bad Wildcats defense last time out but will obviously be facing a difficult matchup against a perennially-tough Utes defense on Saturday. Take the under (10*).
|11-28-20||Penn State v. Michigan UNDER 58.5||27-17||Win||100||15 h 35 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Penn State and Michigan at 12 noon et on Saturday.
I'll back the 'under' at the Big House on Saturday afternoon as two disappointing Big Ten East squads do battle. Penn State has yet to post a victory this season but should come in with some confidence in this one. Note that last week the Nittany Lions scored a touchdown with just over two minutes remaining in the first quarter against Iowa but then didn't find the end zone again until well over midway through the third quarter. Meanwhile, Michigan didn't manage to score a touchdown until the final four minutes of the first half against lowly Rutgers last week. That contest ultimately turned on a Michigan kick return touchdown to open the second half, ultimately turning into a shootout that took three overtimes to decide. I expect these two teams to revert to past form and step up defensively on Saturday afternoon. Both offenses have had a tough time putting it all together and I expect more of the same here. Take the under (10*).
|11-27-20||Oregon -13 v. Oregon State||Top||38-41||Loss||-110||13 h 32 m||Show|
Pac-12 Game of the Year. My selection is on Oregon minus the points over Oregon State at 7:30 pm et on Friday.
I'll lay the points with Oregon in the game formerly known as the 'Civil War' on Friday night in Corvallis. The Ducks are off to a perfect 3-0 start to the season and believe they can work themselves into the College Football Playoff conversation. I'm not sure we've seen their best football just yet, however. Last week they narrowly avoided a disaster in a 38-35 win over UCLA, not even sniffing a cover as a 17.5-point favorite. Here, we're dealing with a more manageable pointspread, and I'm anticipating a much sharper performance from an Oregon squad that even with its flaws has put up a whopping 116 points through three games. The offense should hum against a Beavers defense that hasn't generated much of a pass rush, recording just three sacks through three games. Oregon State boasts a tremendous ground attack led by RB Jermar Jefferson. He has yet to be slowed this season, rushing for at least 120 yards and a touchdown or more in all three games. I think the Ducks can come up with a few big plays against Beavers QB Tristan Gebbia, however. Gebbia has thrown just two touchdowns compared to three interceptions this season and hasn't proven to be any sort of threat with his legs. As good as Jefferson is, the Beavers aren't really built to play from behind and I expect Gebbia's inexperience to show in this matchup. Rallying to beat Cal last week is one thing, but doing so against a powerhouse like Oregon is another matter entirely. Take Oregon (10*).
|11-27-20||Stanford v. California UNDER 52||24-23||Win||100||9 h 43 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Stanford and California at 4:30 pm et on Friday.
I'll back the 'under' as the Cardinal and Golden Bears renew their rivalry at California Memorial Stadium on Friday afternoon. Stanford had its game against Washington State due to Covid protocols last week but when we last saw the Cardinal on the field they were involved in a wild 35-32 loss to Colorado. Keep in mind, Stanford didn't score a touchdown until over 10 minutes into the third quarter in that game. In its first game of the season against Oregon, Stanford found the end zone once in the first quarter but then not again until the game was out of hand midway through the fourth quarter. While the Cardinal defense has struggled, this is a favorable matchup against a Cal offense that doesn't do anything particularly well. The Bears managed to put together four scoring drives in the first half against Oregon State last week but were then held off the scoreboard for the entire second half. It was the same story in their first game of the season at UCLA as they put up 10 points in the first half and zero in the second. This matchup only managed to get into the 40's last season and I look for more of the same here. Take the under (10*).
|11-27-20||Nebraska v. Iowa OVER 53||Top||20-26||Loss||-110||15 h 13 m||Show|
Big Ten Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Nebraska and Iowa at 1 pm et on Friday.
We cashed our Big Ten Total of the Month in October with the 'under' in Iowa's 21-20 loss to Northwestern. Since then, the Hawkeyes have rattled off three straight wins, scoring 49, 35 and 41 points in the process. Iowa's offense draws another favorable matchup on Friday as Nebraska comes in off a disappointing 41-23 home loss to Illinois. The Huskers defense isn't stopping anyone right now and will certainly have their hands full once again on Friday afternoon. I do expect Nebraska to show up, however, on the strength of an offense that is better than it has showed (at least in my opinion). The Huskers took three sacks and turned the football over a whopping five times last week against Illinois, but still managed to score 23 points. Meanwhile, Iowa recorded five sacks and forced five turnovers but still gave up 21 points on the road against Penn State last Saturday. I'm not going to overthink the situation here as I expect a physical Iowa offense to make life miserable for the Huskers defense while Nebraska should stay competitive in what amounts to the biggest game left on its 2020 calendar. I do think the Huskers worst offensive performances are behind them as their schedule was front-loaded with a tough season-opening three-game slate at Ohio State, vs. Wisconsin (that game was canceled) and at Northwestern. Take the over (10*).
|11-26-20||New Mexico v. Utah State +6.5||27-41||Win||100||22 h 27 m||Show|
My selection is on Utah State plus the points over New Mexico at 7 pm et on Thursday.
This is by no means a marquee matchup on Thanksgiving Night as two winless Mountain West squads go head-to-head in Utah. I'll grab all the points I can get with the Aggies as this is certainly their best chance at winning a game this season as they face a Lobos team that has been living out of a suitcase all season due to Covid protocols in their home state. While Utah State had its most recent game against Wyoming canceled due to Covid-related personnel issues, we did see it show some signs of life in its prior contest, ultimately falling by a 35-16 score against Fresno State in a game that was still within reach until the fourth quarter. The Aggies obviously have major issues under center with starting QB Jason Shelley being dismissed from the program but if their offense is going to do anything on Thursday night, it's going to be on the strength of their effective ground attack. It's not as if Shelley was playing well - he was sacked six times in his most recent game and had barely managed to complete 50% of his passes while throwing only two touchdowns and two interceptions on the season. RB Jaylen Warren ran for 136 yards on just nine rush attempts in his last game and has three rushing touchdowns in three games this season. The Aggies also boast one of the best kick returners in Mountain West history as WR Savon Scarver will be looking for a record-setting sixth return touchdown on Thursday night. The Lobos were a complete no-show on the road against Air Force last week (we won with Air Force in that game) and while they would certainly love to pick themselves up off the mat here, I'm not convinced they can win outright let alone cover the lofty pointspread. Again, I want to emphasize the fact that New Mexico hasn't played a true home game all season (it's lone "home" game was played at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas against Nevada back on November 14th). I simply feel that at this stage of the season, this is a weary bunch that will be hard-pressed to put its best foot forward, even with the favorable matchup. Take Utah State (10*).
|11-26-20||Texans v. Lions OVER 51||Top||41-25||Win||100||25 h 22 m||Show|
NFL Turkey Day Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Houston and Detroit at 12:30 pm et on Thursday.
We frustratingly missed the mark with the 'over' in the Texans most recent game - a narrow victory over the Patriots last Sunday that saw the scoring fizzle in the second half. Here, I won't hesitate to go back to the well as Houston draws an even more favorable matchup on the road against the Lions on Thanksgiving Day. We noted in our analysis last week that Texans QB DeShaun Watson would likely benefit from facing little pressure against the Pats and the same holds true here as Detroit ranks last in the NFL in quarterback hit rate. Watson has certainly looked a lot more comfortable in the Texans offense since head coach Bill O'Brien was sent packing and he should enjoy another big day statistically on Thursday. Likewise, the Texans mediocre running game should flourish against a Lions defense that gives up 4.7 yards per rush. On the flip side, the Detroit offense continues to deal with key injuries, most notably to WR Kenny Golladay - the focal point of its offense. With that being said, QB Matt Stafford has seen it all and draws a favorable matchup against a weak Texans defense that is certainly worse than it showed against an inefficient Patriots offense last Sunday. Like Detroit, Houston doesn't get after opposing quarterbacks which should be music to the ears of Stafford, who is used to taking a beating in the Lions pocket. Meanwhile, the Lions ground attack sets up very well against a Texans run defense that has been virtually non-existent, allowing a whopping 5.4 yards per rush on the season. This one has all the makings of a high-scoring affair. Take the over (10*).
|11-23-20||Rams v. Bucs UNDER 48.5||Top||27-24||Loss||-113||27 h 49 m||Show|
NFC Total of the Month. My selection is on the 'under' between Los Angeles and Tampa Bay at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
I like the way this one sets up as a relatively low-scoring affair between two NFC squads that believe they're Super Bowl contenders in the Rams and Bucs. Los Angeles has regained its defensive swagger here in 2020. No team has allowed fewer yards per pass attempt and the Rams have also been tough on opposing ground attacks, giving up just a shade over four yards per rush. While the Bucs exploded offensively last week (we won with Tampa Bay in that game), that was against a below average Panthers defense. Here, Tom Brady's number one job will be taking care of the football and keeping the Bucs offense on schedule with long, methodical drives down the field. On the flip side, the Rams offense draws a tough matchup against a Bucs defense that is still among the league's best, even after that poor showing in front of a national audience against the Saints two weeks ago. Rams QB Jared Goff hasn't fared well when under pressure throughout his career, and he should be under duress for much of this contest with Tampa Bay entering the week second in the NFL in sacks. I mentioned the Rams run defense earlier - the Bucs have been even better in that regard, giving up a measly three yards per rush. I just don't believe anything will come easy for these two offenses on Monday night and we're working with a reasonably high total. Take the under (10*).
|11-22-20||Packers v. Colts UNDER 51.5||31-34||Loss||-110||22 h 2 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Green Bay and Indianapolis at 4:25 pm et on Sunday.
I'll continue to look for spots to play Colts 'unders' and this looks like another favorable situation on Sunday afternoon against the Packers. Green Bay faces an Indianapolis defense that has allowed the second-fewest touchdown passes in the league this season. While QB Aaron Rodgers has enjoyed a career year by many accounts, this is undoubtedly a difficult matchup and I look for Green Bay to lean heavily on its ground attack against a Colts defense that gives up over 4.3 yards per rush. On the flip side, I'm not all that high on the Colts offense, even with QB Philip Rivers enjoying a renaissance of sorts in Indianapolis. The Packers have a very opportunistic secondary led by Jaire Alexander and Kevin King, perhaps forcing Rivers into more of a game manager role in this one. You can certainly run on the Packers defense, but we've only seen the Colts ground attack truly shine in fits and starts this season with rookie Jonathan Taylor somewhat of a disappointment. This is an intriguing non-conference showdown but don't count on an offensive showcase. Take the under (10*).
|11-22-20||Patriots v. Texans OVER 48.5||Top||20-27||Loss||-110||21 h 56 m||Show|
AFC Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between New England and Houston at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This one sets up as a shootout in Houston as the suddenly rejuvenated Patriots challenge the Texans. Houston's defense has been virtually non-existent this season, against both the pass and the run. The Texans aren't generating any semblance of a pass rush and that spells trouble as Pats dual-threat QB Cam Newton looks healthy again and seems to be getting stronger with each passing week. Incredibly, Houston is allowing north of 5.5 yards per rush which should really open things up for New England offense, which is admittedly a little undermanned. Meanwhile, the Houston offense has looked like a different unit since moving on from head coach Bill O'Brien. And speaking of defenses that don't get after opposing quarterbacks, the Patriots fall into that category as well. Even statuesque QB Joe Flacco was able to absolutely torch the Pats two weeks ago. There's little reason to expect anything different here. Also like the Texans, the Pats have struggled to contain opposing ground attacks, giving up 4.6 yards per rush on the season. All in all, both offenses are set up well inside ideal conditions at NRG Stadium and I'm fully expecting offensive fireworks. Take the over (10*).
|11-22-20||Steelers v. Jaguars OVER 46||27-3||Loss||-108||19 h 3 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Pittsburgh and Jacksonville at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This game has the potential to get 'over' the total regardless the way it plays out on the field. The Steelers draw an extremely favorable matchup, particularly on the offensive side of the football where Ben Roethlisberger should feast against a Jags defense that simply doesn't generate any pressure on opposing quarterbacks. While the Pittsburgh ground game has been average at best this season it draws a Jags defense that lacks the ability to consistently slow opposing running backs. Look for a big game from RB James Conner and co., especially once the Steelers are able to build an inevitable lead in this contest. As good as the Steelers have been on defense this season, there are some soft spots for the Jags to take advantage of. Most notably, they've allowed north of 5.2 yards per rush over the last three weeks, which opens the door for Jags RB James Robinson who has enjoyed a breakout season. We've seen Jags rookie QB Jake Luton 'go for it' on a number of big play attempts over the last two weeks, building a solid rapport with WR D.J. Chark. I'm confident we see the Jags do just enough offensively to help this one 'over' the reasonable total (by today's standards). Take the over (10*).
|11-22-20||Steelers -10 v. Jaguars||Top||27-3||Win||100||19 h 55 m||Show|
NFL Blowout Game of the Year. My selection is on Pittsburgh minus the points over Jacksonville at 1 pm et on Sunday.
We've seen the Steelers play down to the level of their competition time and time again over the years, and although they check in undefeated here in 2020, that has held true this season - most recently in a narrow victory over Dallas two weeks ago. Here, Pittsburgh draws an extremely favorable matchup against a very green Jaguars squad that is coming off back-to-back tight losses to the Texans and Packers. After narrowly missing out on upset wins in those games, I look for the dam to break, so to speak on Sunday afternoon. Note that Jacksonville is a shell of its former self on the defensive side of the football where it is generating little to no pressure on opposing quarterbacks. The Jags are giving up big play after big play to opposing offenses and that should continue against a steadily-improving Steelers offense here. Once Pittsburgh is able to build a sizable lead there's little reason to believe Jacksonville can come up with enough touchdown drives to stay within arm's reach. Take Pittsburgh (10*).
|11-21-20||San Diego State v. Nevada +1.5||Top||21-26||Win||100||30 h 40 m||Show|
CFB TV Game of the Month. My selection is on Nevada plus the points over San Diego State at 3:30 pm et on Saturday.
We missed the mark with Nevada in last week's win but non-cover on the road against New Mexico but I won't hesitate to go back to the well with the Wolf Pack in a much different scenario this week, playing as a short home underdog against San Diego State. This is obviously a huge game in the Mountain West Conference, earning rare national TV billing on CBS. We've been high on Nevada all season and see this as a big-time spot for the Wolf Pack to make a statement. San Diego State successfully bounced back from its surprising home loss against San Jose State the week previous, scoring a 34-10 rout of Hawaii last Saturday. Keep in mind, the Aztecs recorded a whopping seven sacks and forced three turnovers in that game - you would almost think the eventual winning margin would have been much larger based on that. We saw some complete defensive breakdowns from Hawaii in that game, allowing two first quarter touchdown runs of 51 and 62 runs. It's unlikely we'll see those type of breakdowns from a Nevada squad whose longest touchdown allowed this season was just 22 yards back in its season-opener against Wyoming. The Wolf Pack essentially sleepwalked through their victory over New Mexico last week. At times we have seen Nevada suffer brief lapses of concentration this season but I'm confident it will be up for, and hyper-focused on the task at hand against a perennial MWC contender San Diego State this week. Note that Nevada took this matchup by a 17-13 score last year. In what should be a higher-scoring affair this time around, I like the Wolf Pack to repeat that effort. Take Nevada (10*).
|11-21-20||Wisconsin v. Northwestern UNDER 44.5||7-17||Win||100||18 h 54 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Wisconsin and Northwestern at 3:30 pm et on Saturday.
This game features a matchup of two of the nation's best defenses and two offenses in line for some regression on Saturday afternoon. The Badgers have scored over 40 points in both games this season, but those came against two reeling squads in Illinois and Michigan. Here, Wisconsin will face its toughest test of the season to date against an experienced Wildcats defense that has held all four opponents to 20 points or less. Northwestern scored 30 points in the first half of its season-opener against Maryland but has put up a grand total of just 82 points in three-and-a-half games since. QB Peyton Ramsey attempted 36 passes last week at Purdue. The last time he threw at least 30 passes in a game he followed it up with an 11-for-18 passing week the next game. I'm confident we'll see both teams treat their quarterbacks as game managers and rely on their ground attacks to move the football (and control the clock) in this crucial Big Ten showdown. While we're dealing with a low total by today's college football standards, I believe it's warranted. Take the under (10*).
|11-21-20||East Carolina -3.5 v. Temple||28-3||Win||100||24 h 49 m||Show|
My selection is on East Carolina minus the points over Temple at 12 noon et on Saturday.
Few bettors will have much interest in backing either of these one-win squads on Saturday but I like East Carolina's chances of delivering a lopsided victory at Lincoln Financial Field. The Pirates have had some bad breaks on their way to a 1-6 start to the season. After starting 1-1 they suffered controversial losses in back-to-back games against Navy and Tulsa (for reasons I won't get into here). Since then, they've come up empty in three more games although not much more could have been expected against the likes of Tulsa, Tulane and Cincinnati. Here, I look for ECU to take its frustrations out on a hapless Temple squad that is a shell of its former self. The Owls lone victory this season came back on October 17th against South Florida and that feels like it happened ages ago given their current state. Temple is likely down to its fourth-string quarterback this week, and also lost arguably its best offensive player in RB Re'Mahn Davis to the transfer portal earlier this season. As expected, the Owls defense has struggled throughout the season, unable to overcome the key personnel losses from last year's team. They'll be in tough trying to contain a Pirates offense that can score in bunches and features an emerging ground game that managed 206 yards in a blowout loss at Cincinnati last week. Note that Temple ranks 96th in the nation in run defense, allowing 199 rush yards per game on north of 4.5 yards per rush. Once the Pirates are able to build a lead, I'm confident they can ultimately put the game away. Take East Carolina (10*).
|11-20-20||Purdue v. Minnesota +3||Top||31-34||Win||100||22 h 44 m||Show|
CFB Underdog Game of the Month. My selection is on Minnesota plus the points over Purdue at 7:30 pm et on Friday.
|11-19-20||Cardinals v. Seahawks -147||Top||21-28||Win||100||10 h 46 m||Show|
NFC West Game of the Year. My selection is on Seattle (moneyline) over Arizona at 8:20 pm et on Thursday.
As this price continues to drop, the Seahawks are now a shoo-in for my Thursday card but rather than lay points given their defensive inefficiencies which always keep the back-door open, I'll back them on the moneyline. The Cardinals are in a clear letdown spot coming off that thrilling last-second victory over Buffalo last week. You might remember the Cards also snatched victory from the jaws of defeat against the Seahawks earlier this month, putting Seattle in a clear revenge spot at home here on Thursday night. I mentioned the Seahawks defensive struggles, but lost in the Cards recent success has been their inability to slow down any opposing offense. Of course, injuries have played a big role as Arizona is missing a number of key cogs up front - most notably edge rusher Chandler Jones. Last week a road-weary Seahawks squad wasn't able to match the Rams intensity, ultimately falling in a second straight disappointing contest for their backers. Here, I look for the Seahawks to ramp back up for a big division game, and ultimately prevail in spite of Cards QB Kyler Murray's efforts. Take Seattle moneyline (10*).
|11-19-20||Cardinals v. Seahawks OVER 56.5||21-28||Loss||-110||10 h 38 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Arizona and Seattle at 8:20 pm et on Thursday.
This one is being pegged as a shootout and I expect precisely that type of contest to unfold as the Cardinals and Seahawks renew acquaintances on Thursday night. Arizona is of course coming off a thrilling last-second come-from-behind, hail mary-fueled win over the Bills last Sunday. There's little reason to expect any sort of slowdown from the Cardinals offense against an undermanned, struggling Seahawks defense that simply hasn't been able to get after opposing quarterbacks at all this season. With that being said, we can also expect a big, bounce-back performance from the Seahawks offense as they once again match up well against a beaten up Cards defense on Thursday. Arizona is missing a number of key cogs on the defensive side of the football, particularly up front. QB Russell Wilson has been under heavy duress for much of the last two games but gets a terrific 'get-right' matchup here. It sounds like Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett will be good to go despite nursing an injury on a short week, obviously helping Wilson's cause against a Cards defense that has yet to prove it can cover the slot. Expect plenty of offensive fireworks on Thursday night. Take the over (10*).
|11-18-20||Western Michigan v. Central Michigan||Top||52-44||Win||100||11 h 38 m||Show|
MAC West Game of the Year. My selection is on Western Michigan over Central Michigan at 7 pm et on Wednesday.
Western Michigan is coming off what some will call a miracle come-from-behind win over Toledo last week so it would be easy to suffer a bit of a letdown here on Wednesday night. I don't see that happening, however, as this is a rivalry game with Central Michigan and in this unique Covid-shortened 2020 campaign, the Broncos might need to run the table to reach the MAC Championship Game. While Central Michigan does check in 2-0 on the season, I haven't been overly impressed by either of its wins. In the Chips' first victory they recorded five sacks, forced a pair of turnovers and dominated the time of possession battle, but still won by just three points over Ohio, at home no less. Last week they rolled to a 40-10 victory over an inexperienced Northern Illinois squad that is essentially playing for next year. CMU will definitely be stepping up in class in this one, having dropped its last two meetings with WMU. The two teams are actually quite similar in a lot of ways, but I like the Broncos offense a little more at this stage of the season and believe their defense can rise to the occasion following a tough game against a good Toledo offense last week. Note that the Broncos will likely be without one of their best defenders in Ali Fayad after he suffered an ankle injury last week. I still like the Broncos here and will consider it a big bonus if he does play. Take Western Michigan (10*).
|11-17-20||Buffalo v. Bowling Green +31.5||Top||42-17||Win||100||11 h 58 m||Show|
MAC East Game of the Year. My selection is on Bowling Green plus the points over Buffalo at 7 pm et on Tuesday.
Buffalo is the cream of the crop when it comes to the MAC and is already off to a perfect 2-0 start on the heels of back-to-back blowout wins, scoring 40+ points in both contests. With that being said, it's difficult to envision the Bulls truly getting up for this Tuesday night trip to Bowling Green. Note that Buffalo will enjoy a few extra days off after this one, not playing again until next Saturday. It's also worth noting that it's next two games are much bigger ones, particularly it's next one against undefeated Kent State. Bowling Green has been blown out in each of its first two games, although both contests came against upper-echelon MAC squads in Toledo and Kent State. I'm always one to look for the positives, however, and I will point out that the Falcons have allowed just two sacks through two games and have also found some success running the football. I do think that Bowling Green can move the football consistently enough to eat some clock in this game and ultimately shorten proceedings and keep things respectable against a Bulls squad that is simply looking to win and move on. We've seen virtually nothing from the Falcons passing game so far this season even though they have a Boston College transfer at quarterback in Matt McDonald - and he comes in with some knowledge of head coach Scot Loeffler's system with Loeffler having been the offensive coordinator at BC. Again looking at the positives, McDonald threw two interceptions in his Falcons debut two weeks ago but didn't toss a single pick in last week's blowout loss. Take Bowling Green (10*).
|11-16-20||Vikings v. Bears +3.5||19-13||Loss||-120||23 h 14 m||Show|
My selection is on Chicago plus the points over Minnesota at 8:15 pm et on Monday.
It's not difficult to fade the Vikings in this spot as they lay points on the road following consecutive victories. I can't help but put the Vikes in the 'paper tiger' category and here they'll head to Chicago to face what is sure to be a highly-motivated Bears squad. Note that Chicago has proven to be the kryptonite for Vikes standout RB Dalvin Cook in recent years. Perhaps equally as notable, the Bears have been able to keep WR Adam Thielen at bay in recent meetings as well. Meanwhile, the Vikings defense is one of the league's weakest units, due to injuries and otherwise. While the Bears by no means possess an elite offensive squad, they might just enjoy a breakout performance against Minnesota here. Take Chicago (10*).
|11-15-20||Broncos v. Raiders OVER 50.5||Top||12-37||Loss||-110||25 h 26 m||Show|
AFC West Total of the Year. My selection is on the 'over' between Denver and Las Vegas at 4:05 pm et on Sunday.
I'm expecting a shootout between these AFC West rivals in Las Vegas on Sunday afternoon. We won with the 'over' in the Broncos loss in Atlanta last Sunday and there's little reason to go any other way this week as they take on the surging Raiders. Broncos QB Drew Lock didn't exactly flourish in last week's favorable matchup with the Falcons but he did eventually get the offensive moving and put points on the board and I look for him to build off of that performance here. The Raiders aren't applying any pressure on opposing quarterbacks - a contrast to the pressure Lock has been under in recent weeks. Given a clean pocket I'm confident Lock can continue to build on his solid rapport with his young receiving corps, most notable Jerry Jeudy, who is looking like a star in the making. Also note that Las Vegas has been terrible against the run, allowing a whopping 4.7 yards per rush which should open things up even more for this Denver offense. I have no concerns at all about the Raiders offense thriving against the Broncos injury-plagued defense. Denver hasn't been particularly tough against the run or the pass and the Raiders are quietly ascending to elite-level status on offense. Look for TE Darren Waller and RB Josh Jacobs in particular to feast in this matchup. Take the over (10*).
|11-15-20||Bucs -5.5 v. Panthers||Top||46-23||Win||100||22 h 30 m||Show|
NFC South Game of the Year. My selection is on Tampa Bay minus the points over Carolina at 1 pm et on Sunday.
This is an ideal bounce-back spot for Tom Brady and the Bucs following last Sunday night's shellacking at the hands of the Saints. It doesn't take much to empty an NFL team's bandwagon, particularly from a betting perspective, and that lopsided loss certainly fit the bill. We already won with the Bucs laying points against the Panthers once this season and I won't hesitate to go back to the well in this one. Note that the Panthers defense has had a miserable time trying to apply pressure on opposing quarterbacks - truly a shell of this unit's former self. Look for Brady to stay upright for the majority of this game, and ultimately pick apart a very beatable Panthers secondary. On the flip side, the Panthers once again lost do-it-all RB Christian McCaffrey to injury - this time a shoulder - in last week's hard-fought loss in Kansas City. Now it will be up to backup Mike Davis to again shoulder the load, but the prospects of him finding much success against a Bucs run defense that allows under three yards per rush is highly unlikely. Meanwhile, Panthers QB Teddy Bridgewater has only shown flashes of brilliance this season, not playing at a high level on nearly a consistent enough basis to keep Carolina in contention in the NFC South. He'll be under duress for much of this contest and even when he is given time, expect the Bucs secondary to offer blanket coverage on the Panthers average receiving corps. Take Tampa Bay (10*).
|11-15-20||Eagles v. Giants UNDER 44.5||17-27||Win||100||22 h 55 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Philadelphia and New York at 1 pm et on Sunday.
As I noted in my analysis of Thursday night's losing play on the Colts-Titans 'under', it's not easy playing an NFL 'under' these days. With that being said, we'll go back to the well here as the Eagles and Giants set up as a low-scoring NFC East affair. I'm much higher on the Giants defense than most. They catch a fairly reasonable matchup here, even with the Eagles getting healthier off their bye week, welcoming back a number of key cogs on the offensive line. Meanwhile, the Eagles defense is set up exceptionally well to cause plenty of headaches for Giants QB Daniel Jones. Both defenses has been stout against the run but I don't believe that will prevent either offensive coordinator from drawing up plenty of run plays, ultimately banging their heads against the wall in that regard. That should lead to plenty of clock-churning drives, supporting our play on the 'under'. Take the under (10*).
|11-14-20||Temple v. Central Florida -25.5||Top||13-38||Loss||-109||34 h 16 m||Show|
AAC Game of the Month. My selection is on Central Florida minus the points over Temple at 7:30 pm et on Saturday.
I really like the way this one sets up for Central Florida, even as it lays close to four touchdowns. Temple's season is quickly going down the drain. Off to a 1-4 start, there's likely only one potential victory left on its schedule, that likely coming in a matchup with East Carolina. Injuries have played a role, but the simple fact is, the Owls defense hasn't been able to overcome all of the key losses from last year's team and the offense just hasn't been good enough to prevail in shootouts. Here, the Owls will once again be hard-pressed to keep pace with another explosive offense, even if QB Anthony Russo can return from injury (as is expected). Central Florida suffered stunning consecutive losses against Tulsa and Memphis in October but has since responded with back-to-back victories, scoring a whopping 95 points in the process. Now the path is there for the Knights to run the table, even if a difficult matchup against Cincinnati lies in waiting next week (UCF gets that game at home). This is obviously a key matchup for UCF as it looks to make that game against the Bearcats next week matter. While the Knights offense will undoubtedly continue to roll against a very beatable Temple defense, the question is whether UCF's defense can rise to the occasion and help stretch the margin out in this one. I believe it can and will. This is an experienced Knights defense that absolutely manhandled a good Houston offense last week, not allowing a single offensive score until over midway through the third quarter. Yes, they've been involved in plenty of high-scoring shootouts this season, but I'm confident the UCF defense can come up with enough 'splash plays' to ultimately put this game away for good. Take Central Florida (10*).
|11-14-20||Nevada -17 v. New Mexico||Top||27-20||Loss||-107||34 h 41 m||Show|
CFB Blowout Game of the Week. My selection is on Nevada minus the points over New Mexico at 6:30 pm et on Saturday.
Nevada is off to a terrific 3-0 start to the season, with all three wins coming in impressive fashion. Yet, the Wolf Pack still find themselves on the outside looking in as far as the AP Top 25 goes, receiving just one vote in this week's poll. That could change after this game, however, as Nevada is in line to deliver another decisive victory against New Mexico. While this is considered a road game, it will actually be played at a neutral site in Las Vegas due to Covid protocols. Speaking of Covid protocols, the Wolf Pack have been forced to practice in two separate units, offense and defense. That's nothing new for Nevada, however, as that's how it prepared for this unique 2020 season over the summer months. We won with the Wolf Pack last week as they got off to a bit of a shaky start but ultimately rolled to a 34-9 win over Utah State. This is a similarly favorable matchup against a winless New Mexico squad that battled hard, but ultimately fell short in last week's 39-33 loss to Hawaii. It's worth noting that the Lobos will be forced to go with their backup quarterback this week after Tevaka Tuioti suffered a concussion in last week's contest. That puts QB Trae Hall in a tough spot this week, as he prepares to face a fierce Nevada defense that seems to be getting stronger with each passing week. Nevada took this matchup 21-10 last year but this is a stronger Wolf Pack squad, and I expect them to stretch out the margin this time around. Take Nevada (10*).
|11-14-20||Wake Forest v. North Carolina -12.5||Top||53-59||Loss||-110||28 h 40 m||Show|
ACC Game of the Month. My selection is on North Carolina minus the points over Wake Forest at 12 noon et on Saturday.
This is the tail-end of a key two-game stretch that North Carolina obviously had circled as must-win contests after dropping two of three previously. The Tar Heels accomplished task number one by brushing aside Duke in blowout fashion last week and I look for them to deliver another lopsided victory against streaking Wake Forest on Saturday. The Demon Deacons started the season with consecutive losses but have rattled off four straight wins since. Note that those four victories came against teams that own a combined 7-18 record. We generally know what we're going to get from the North Carolina offense, but in this particular matchup, I look for its defense to rise to the occasion. We saw signs of that unit turning the corner in last week's win over Duke as it recorded five sacks and generally made life miserable for the Blue Devils offense. This is a similarly-enticing matchup noting that Deacs' QB Sam Hartman has been sacked 18 times in five games against FBS opponents this season. Wake Forest defeated North Carolina by a 24-18 score last season, but September 2019 seems like an awfully long time ago now. I see this as a critical contest for the Tar Heels as they'll face an uphill battle against Notre Dame and Miami over the next couple of games. Look for them avenge last year's loss with a decisive victory. Take North Carolina (10*).
|11-13-20||Iowa v. Minnesota +4||Top||35-7||Loss||-113||35 h 41 m||Show|
CFB Revenge Game of the Year. My selection is on Minnesota plus the points over Iowa at 7 pm et on Friday.
I absolutely love the way this Big Ten matchup sets up on Friday night. I'm a believer that the oddsmakers rarely 'get it wrong' but in this particular case, I'm willing to make an exception. Perhaps this line has something to do with the fact that Iowa blew the doors off of Michigan State 49-7 last week. Keep in mind, the Spartans were in a clear letdown spot following an upset win over in-state rival Michigan, at The Big House no less, the previous week. It's also worth noting that the Minnesota bandwagon cleared quickly this season as it dropped its season-opener in blowout fashion against Michigan (in front of a national ABC audience). I like what the Gophers bring to the table here, with an offense that is suddenly humming behind the strong running of RB Mo Ibrahim. Their offense is going to be fine with experienced QB Tanner Morgan at the helm. Defensively, the Gophers clearly have some issues to work out, but I'm not convinced that Iowa is capable of taking advantage. The Hawkeyes are by no means an elite offensive team, even if they did approach the 50-point mark last week. Iowa took last year's meeting by a narrow margin, but I look for Minnesota to get its revenge here. Take Minnesota (10*).
|11-12-20||Colts v. Titans UNDER 48.5||34-17||Loss||-107||23 h 54 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'under' between Indianapolis and Tennessee at 8:20 pm et on Thursday.
It has become very difficult to play the 'under' in today's NFL with scoring up across the league and the majority of games finding their way 'over' the total. With that being said, we won with the 'under' in the Colts most recent game - last Sunday's loss to the Ravens, and I won't hesitate to go back to the well with the same play here on Thursday night in Tennessee. The Colts may have come up short against Baltimore, but they once again performed well defensively, keeping elite playmaker Lamar Jackson at bay for much of that contest. Their zone defense has done a tremendous job of limiting big plays from opposing offenses, and I expect that to be the case again here. Keep in mind, Titans QB Ryan Tannehill has cooled following a red hot start to the season, topping out at two touchdown passes in three straight games. While Tennessee does boast arguably the league's best running back in Derrick Henry, he'll be going up against an elite Colts run defense that gives up just north of three yards per rush this season. On the flip side, the Indianapolis offense is average at best, with QB Philip Rivers more of a game manager than a gunslinger at this stage of his career, even though he has fit the latter bill more often than not in recent weeks. Here in a tough divisional road game, I'm not anticipating Rivers slinging the football all over the field. Look for the Colts to instead elect to run the football early and often against a Titans defense that hasn't proven it can slow opposing ground attacks. Look for plenty of long, clock churning drives in this one, helping keep the final score 'under' the relatively high posted total. Take the under (10*).
|11-11-20||Central Michigan v. Northern Illinois OVER 57.5||40-10||Loss||-109||36 h 38 m||Show|
My selection is on the 'over' between Central Michigan and Northern Illinois at 8 pm et on Wednesday.
I believe this game has high-scoring potential as Northern Illinois stays home following a wild 49-30 loss to Buffalo last week. Central Michigan is coming off a more positive result, a 30-27 victory over perennial MAC contender Ohio. I liked what I saw from the Chippewas offense in that game as QB Daniel Richardson and WR Kalili Pimpleton showed some nice chemistry (Pimpleton hauled in five catches for 65 yards and a touchdown) and RB Kobe Lewis racked up 112 rushing yards and two scores on 28 carries, despite his longest run going for only 11 yards. The Chips draw a more favorable matchup here against a relatively inexperienced and very beatable Northern Illinois defense. Note that NIU didn't record a single sack in last week's loss to Buffalo. The Huskies will need to be sharper offensively in order to keep pace with CMU this week. That's not really asking much after they lost four fumbles and added an interception last week. I do believe the Huskies are better than they showed offensively with experienced QB Ross Bowers leading the way. It is worth noting that they put together three first half scoring drives against arguably the MAC's best team in the Buffalo Bulls last week - before things got out of hand in the second half (due to three Bulls defensive scores). I'm expecting a more competitive affair than we saw between these teams last year (CMU won 48-10) and that lends itself to a high-scoring contest. Take the over (10*).