NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 6, 2017



NFL Picks (Preseason 2017): 9-10-1 (-$110)
NFL Picks (Week 1, 2017): 8-6-1 (+$135)
NFL Picks (Week 2, 2017): 9-7 (+$45)
NFL Picks (Week 3, 2017): 5-11 (-$425)
NFL Picks (Week 4, 2017): 5-11 (+$90)
NFL Picks (Week 5, 2017): 8-6 (+$1,080)

NFL Picks (2017): 44-51-2 (+$815)
NFL Picks (2016): 148-127-10 (+$1,055)
NFL Picks (2015): 133-138-10 (-$2,360)
NFL Picks (2014): 143-132-7 (-$1,115)
NFL Picks (2013): 144-131-8 (+$5,580)
NFL Picks (2012): 130-145-8 (-$5,760)
NFL Picks (2011): 137-133-12 (-$1,925)
NFL Picks (2010): 144-131-8 (+$6,080)
NFL Picks (2009): 151-124-9 (+$3,370)
NFL Picks (2008): 136-125-6 (+$4,330)
If you don't quite understand the line, total or anything else, go to my Sports Betting FAQ.

Vegas betting action updated Oct. 16, 6:15 p.m. ET. Follow @walterfootball for updates.


Go to Week 6 NFL Picks - Early Games








Los Angeles Rams (3-2) at Jacksonville Jaguars (3-2)
Line: Jaguars by 1. Total: 42.5.

Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Pick.
Walt's Calculated Line: Jaguars -1.5.
Sunday, Oct 15, 4:25 PM
Comment on this game

The Game. Edge: None.

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To see the story behind this one, check out the new Adventures of Tom Brady's Haircuts!

LOS ANGELES OFFENSE: Jacksonville's defense had a stellar performance last week, intercepting Ben Roethlisberger five times. Some of those picks were on Roethlisberger, but the team had a terrific showing versus the Steelers on the road.

Jared Goff is obviously not on the same level as Roethlisberger, though he's been coached up incredibly well by Sean McVay and Greg Olson. Roethlisberger seemed overly sloppy with the ball, as perhaps he was overlooking the Jaguars, following a victory against the Ravens and having an impending matchup versus the Chiefs on the horizon. Goff should be more focused, though there are some distractions that I'll discuss later. Nevertheless, his offensive line should be able to do a good job of keeping Jacksonville's pass-rushers out of the backfield on many snaps. The Jaguars are very talented up front, however, so I imagine they'll be able to disrupt some drives with pressure.

Meanwhile, the positive matchup the Rams appear to have on paper is misleading. The Jaguars were 32nd in run defense DVOA entering last week's game, and many were left wondering why the Steelers didn't dominate on the ground. Well, aside from the injury to stellar right tackle Marcus Gilbert, the reason was that Jacksonville's rush defense stats were inflated by two fluky long runs by the Jets. Outside of that, the Jaguars have done a solid job versus the run this year, so I don't expect Todd Gurley to have another dominant performance.

JACKSONVILLE OFFENSE: Speaking of dominant running backs, Leonard Fournette exploded for 181 yards on 28 carries against the Steelers. However, those stats were inflated as well, thanks to a 90-yard burst at the very end. Fournette was limited to just 39 yards on 14 attempts in the opening half, thanks in part to the absence of center Brandon Linder. It seems likely that Linder will return for this contest. That's the good news for the Jaguars. The bad news is that they'll be battling a tough Rams defensive line featuring Aaron Donald and Michael Brockers.

The Jaguars made sure to pound the rock as much as possible versus the Steelers, remarkably calling just one pass in the second half. They'll do that again if they're way ahead in this contest, but I don't think that'll be the case unless Goff has five picks as well. The reason is obvious, and that would be Blake Bortles.

Jacksonville is 3-2 right now, but it's been winning in spite of Bortles, who continues to be terrible. It's mostly his fault that he sucks, but his offensive line isn't doing him any favors. I fully expect the Rams to put tons of heat on him whenever he has to drop back to pass. He could be the one to toss five picks this week, especially if stud safety Lamarcus Joyner returns from injury.

RECAP: I mentioned earlier that I'd discuss a possible distraction for the Rams. That would be their impending trip to London. For some reason, a West Coast team is making the trip across the Atlantic Ocean, and the Rams have to prepare for that. This is no small task, as teams going into London are 12-22-2 against the spread, all time.

Despite this, I'm still picking the Rams. The Jaguars are favored, so that's an automatic fade for me. Jacksonville also has no home-field advantage, so this spread is a bit too high. I expect the Jaguars to be possibly flat as well following the upset victory over the Steelers, so I think the Rams will pull the minor upset. Then again, can you really call it an upset? Bortles should never be favored, after all.

THURSDAY THOUGHTS: This spread seems like it's inching closer to +3, but it's not there yet. The best number is +3 -120 at BetUS. I'd consider betting the Rams at +3 -110, though I'd like for Mark Barron and Lamarcus Joyner to play and for Brandon Linder to be out again.

SATURDAY NOTES: The +3 -120s that I mentioned Thursday didn't last very long, as the sharps snapped those up quickly. This line back to +2.5, which doesn't seem very appealing, even with Brandon Linder officially out. No word on the Ram defenders yet.

SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: There's been a ton of sharp money on the Rams. This line has dropped to +1. The pros are clearly not concerned about all the Rams' traveling, but I am. That's the only reason I'm not betting on them.

FINAL THOUGHTS: The line hasn't moved from +1. Again, I still like the Rams, but I would've liked to have seen Lamarcus Joyner suit up. He's out. Mark Barron is at least in the lineup, so I still owuld take the Rams.

Here's our Week 6 NFL picks podcast video:




The Psychology. Edge: None.
The Jaguars are coming off a big victory against the Steelers, so it's fair to wonder how focused they'll be at home for the Rams. Meanwhile, the Rams have a London game coming up.


The Vegas. Edge: Jaguars.
Slight lean on the Rams.
  • Percentage of money on Los Angeles: 61% (22,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: None.
  • Teams are 12-22-2 ATS prior to London.
  • Jaguars are 12-7 ATS coming off a 2-game road trip the previous 19 instances.
  • Jaguars are 11-29 ATS vs. NFC opponents since 2007.
  • Jaguars are 31-62 ATS against non-divisional opponents since 2008.
  • Jaguars are 8-16 ATS as home favorites since 2008.
  • Opening Line: Pick.
  • Opening Total: 44.
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Rams 17, Jaguars 16
    Rams +1 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Under 42.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Rams 27, Jaguars 17






    Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-2) at Arizona Cardinals (2-3)
    Line: Buccaneers by 2. Total: 46.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Cardinals -2.5.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Buccaneers -4.5.
    Sunday, Oct 15, 4:05 PM
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Buccaneers.

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    ARIZONA OFFENSE: The Cardinals just traded for Adrian Peterson, cutting Chris Johnson in response. I suppose this was an upgrade, as Peterson is averaging 3.0 yards per carry this season compared to Johnson's 2.5. Still, it's not going to help much, as Peterson is done.

    Even if Peterson still had something left in the tank, it would be difficult to establish any sort of running game because of the state of the offensive line. The blocking unit has been the NFL's worst over the past couple of weeks. That may change if left tackle D.J. Humphries returns, but there's no telling how healthy he'll be. Humphries suffered some setbacks to his knee a couple of weeks ago, so there's certainly a chance that happens again, and it might even occur during the game. Regardless, I expect Robert Ayers to win that matchup quite easily. In the interior, Gerald McCoy and Chris Baker will be unstoppable. Arizona's offensive line is putrid on the inside as well.

    The Buccaneers had some major defensive issues a couple of weeks ago when they were missing a bunch of players. Linebackers Lavonte David and Kwon Alexander, as well as safety T.J. Ward, were all out the past two weeks. With Tampa coming off extra rest, one or two of them could be back, and they'll help defend Andre Ellington, whom Carson Palmer has relied upon as a dump-off target amid all of the pressure.

    TAMPA BAY OFFENSE: Last year, the Cardinals' defense wrecked Jameis Winston. They clamped down on Winston, forcing him into five turnovers in a 40-7 blowout. However, there are two major reasons why things will be completely different this time. First, Winston didn't have any downfield options last year besides Mike Evans. Patrick Peterson erased Evans, and that was it. Winston didn't know what to do. The Buccaneers made sure to upgrade Winston's supporting cast, so now Winston can punish the Cardinals by going to DeSean Jackson, Cameron Brate (who emerged later in 2016), O.J. Howard and Chris Godwin.

    The second reason is that the Cardinals are no longer good at stopping the deep ball. They lost some defensive players this offseason, including Calais Campbell, so they no longer have a dominant pass rush. Tyrann Mathieu has struggled as well. No one is talking about it, but Mathieu has been a major liability.

    Oh, and Doug Martin is back as well. Martin looked like he was in terrific shape versus the Patriots, and he should handle more of a workload this week. The Cardinals aren't bad against the run, but they showed some cracks in Philadelphia. Martin figures to have a strong performance.

    RECAP: I thought it might be possible that this would be my October NFL Pick of the Month a week ago. The Cardinals were -2.5 on the advance line, which I thought was absurd. I had them at +4.5, meaning the spread was off by seven points!

    Unfortunately, the Buccaneers are now favored by two. That's not nearly enough, however. I still have this spread at Buccaneers -4.5, and I think I might even be too low. People don't understand how horrible Arizona is yet. The Cardinals are one of the worst teams in the NFL. They can't block, run the ball, throw deep, or stop the pass. Their quarterback is falling apart, while their head coach hasn't been the same since his unfortunate illness. The Buccaneers, on the other hand, are a solid team. They're seeking revenge and should be able to win this game quite easily. Plus, think about this spread this way: Had Tampa Bay not missed field goals and beat the Patriots on national TV, what would this line be? Probably -4 or -4.5, right?

    This is my top play of the week. Not only is there a colossal mismatch in talent that the spread doesn't reflect appropriately, but the Buccaneers are coming off extra rest. They've had to think about their loss to the Patriots for a while, so they'll come out angry. Oh, and the cherry on top is that the Cardinals have to go to London after this game! Yes, they had to fly out to the East Coast to battle the Eagles, return all the way back to Arizona, and after this contest, they have to board a plane again and go to London. I don't know how in the world Arizona is going to be mentally prepared for this superior opponent.

    THURSDAY THOUGHTS: This spread has fallen to -1.5 in most books, as it seems like the sharps are on the Cardinals. I don't care. Arizona sucks, and people don't realize the level of their ineptitude yet. The Buccaneers continue to be my top play this week.

    SATURDAY NOTES: Lavonte David and T.J. Ward will play against the Cardinals, according to reports. This is huge news, especially with D.J. Humphries set to return. What's even better for Tampa is that Patrick Peterson has some sort of quad injury. Peterson is going to play, but he may not be 100 percent, which is enormous because Arizona will be counting on him to cover Mike Evans. With all that considered, Tampa Bay remains my top selection this week.

    SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: It looked like the sharps were going to be on the Cardinals, but there was some public and sharp movement on the Buccaneers on Sunday morning. This wasn't a surprise at all. This spread is priced too low.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: There's some sharp money on the Buccaneers, as this line has inched up to -3 +100 in some books. You can still get -2.5 -115 at 5Dimes. I still love Tampa.


    The Psychology. Edge: Buccaneers.
    The Cardinals are flying out to London after this game. Tampa Bay is coming off extra rest.


    The Vegas. Edge: Cardinals.
    The public is on the Buccaneers.
  • Percentage of money on Tampa Bay: 65% (20,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Buccaneers.
  • Road Team is 78-46 ATS in Buccaneers games since 2009.
  • Buccaneers are 4-8 ATS as road favorites since 2004.
  • Cardinals are 28-14 ATS at home as underdogs or favorites of less than -3 since 2007.
  • Teams are 12-22-2 ATS prior to London.
  • Opening Line: Pick.
  • Opening Total: 44.5.
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Buccaneers 27, Cardinals 10
    Buccaneers -2.5 -115 (5 Units) -- Incorrect; -$575
    Under 46 (0.5 Units) -- Incorrect; -$55
    Cardinals 38, Buccaneers 33




    Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2) at Kansas City Chiefs (5-0)
    Line: Chiefs by 4.5. Total: 45.5.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Chiefs -2.5.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Chiefs -3.
    Sunday, Oct 15, 4:25 PM
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: None.

    Emmitt on the Brink is back for Season 10 (I can't believe this is the 10th year I've been doing this!) In Episode 5, Evil Emmitt goes back to his alma mater to recruit someone else to win his battle against real Emmitt.

    PITTSBURGH OFFENSE: Ben Roethlisberger needs to make up his mind. After his five-interception performance, he told reporters that he might not have it anymore. Twenty-four hours later, he was saying that he's "one of the best" quarterbacks in the NFL. So, which one is it, exactly?

    Well, when you have two extremes, it's usually something in between. Roethlisberger is not a terrible quarterback who throws five picks every game, but he hasn't been the same this year, presumably because he thought about retirement this offseason. A big reason for his recent struggles, however, can be attributed to the absence of right tackle Marcus Gilbert. There's a huge difference between Gilbert and Chris Hubbard, and that was felt this past Sunday when the Steelers couldn't keep the Jacksonville edge rushers out of the pocket. Justin Houston looms as a difficult matchup for Hubbard, so it's a good thing that it sounds like Gilbert will return. It's nothing concrete, but that's the scuttlebutt. If that's correct, it'll be a huge factor in Pittsburgh rebounding.

    If Roethlisberger is granted time in the pocket as a result of Gilbert's return, he should be able to exploit some weaknesses in Kansas City's secondary. Of course, it would be difficult for any team to cover Antonio Brown, regardless of personnel. Fortunately for the Steelers, Marcus Peters doesn't shadow, so Brown could have a big game. Le'Veon Bell could as well, as the Chiefs' run defense isn't overly dominant.

    KANSAS CITY OFFENSE: The Chiefs have a major injury on the offensive line as well. Laurent Duvernay-Tardif isn't a big name, but he's a solid guard, and he's certainly better than his replacement, first-round bust Cameron Erving. I thought the Texans would beat the Chiefs because J.J. Watt would get to dominate Erving. Alas, Watt was knocked out for the season during the opening drive of the evening.

    This time, it'll be Stephon Tuitt's turn. If Duvernay-Tardif can't return from injury, Tuitt will be able to pressure Alex Smith in the interior along with Cameron Heyward, who has an easy matchup as well. Smith will be able to escape and scramble, of course, but quarterbacks hate inside pressure more than anything because it prevents them from stepping into their throws. The Texans should've been able to make this a problem for Smith, but couldn't. If Erving starts, the Steelers will disrupt several drives.

    Another injury factor is Travis Kelce's concussion. It's unclear if Kelce will be able to clear protocol by next weekend, and considering that the Chiefs have a major disadvantage up front, they'll need all hands on deck. Kelce's absence would bog down the offense, especially considering that the Steelers have the personnel to contain Kareem Hunt. They had bottled up Leonard Fournette for most of the afternoon last week until Fournette blasted by everyone for a 90-yard run when Pittsburgh stopped trying.

    RECAP: There are several injury question marks in this game, but I love the Steelers if Gilbert returns to the lineup. Pittsburgh's offense will be much better with Gilbert on the field, and I have to think that Roethlisberger will bounce back from the worst performance of his career. Pittsburgh in general has rebounded well off horrible defeats, owning a 7-1 ATS record following a loss of 20-plus in the Roethlisberger era.

    If Duvernay-Tardif and Kelce are out for the Chiefs, this pick will seem even sweeter. This spread is an overreaction to what happened last week. To me, it looked like the Steelers didn't even prepare for the Jaguars. They had a blowout victory against their blood rivals (Ravens), and they had this game to look forward to. Why would they focus on a Jaguar team that lost to the Jets? The Steelers were +2.5 on the advance spread, which I thought was reasonable. Now, they're +4.5? Get the hell out of here.

    The Chiefs, meanwhile, have a history of underperforming at home. Everyone talks about how great their home-field advantage is, but that's a gambling fallacy. They seldom cover as hosts, and when they do, it's usually via a fluke, like we saw two weeks ago in the Monday night debacle the Redskins had at the very end of the game. If the Redskins could keep that contest close throughout, the Steelers certainly will be able to. Oh, and by the way, Kansas City has a battle against the Raiders on Thursday night following this contest. Even though this is a revenge game, the Chiefs can't exactly fully focus on the Steelers, knowing that they have to take on a divisional rival in four days.

    This is a four-unit pick for now. I'll increase or decrease it based on who plays, but I need Gilbert in the lineup to make this a huge play; otherwise, Houston will eat Hubbard alive.

    THURSDAY THOUGHTS: This spread is -4 at Pinnacle, so it's curious that the sharpest book is inviting action on the Chiefs. Meanwhile, 5Dimes (+4.5) and Bovada (+5) have more favorable numbers for the Steelers. Even better news is that it seems like Marcus Gilbert is going to play. Depending on other injury situations, I may upgrade this play to five units.

    SATURDAY NOTES: I said I would increase or decrease the unit count on this pick depending on who was in the lineup or not. Well, Marcus Gilbert is back for Pittsburgh, which is huge. The talented right tackle will be able to contain Justin Houston, which should propel Pittsburgh's offense. The Steelers are 1-5 without Gilbert on the field in the past two years, so that should tell you how important he is to the team. It sounds like guard Ramon Foster won't be available, but he hasn't been very effective because of a back injury. Meanwhile, the Chiefs will be missing their guard, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif as well. Kansas City fans have argued that Duvernay-Tardif isn't all that important, but I disagree. Duvernay-Tardif isn't great, by any means, but he's solid. What's key is that he's a billion times better than the utterly inept Cameron Erving, who won't be able to block Pittsburgh's great five-techniques. And speaking of five, that's the number of units I will have on Pittsburgh.

    SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: I'm going to lock this pick in at +4.5 -115 at Bovada. This line is down to +3.5 everywhere else because of tons of sharp action on the Steelers.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: This line hasn't moved since this morning - in any book - so my decision to lock this in was inconsequential. The Steelers are still +4.5 -115 at Bovada.


    The Psychology. Edge: Steelers.
    The Chiefs have a battle against the Raiders on Thursday night coming up. The Steelers were humiliated.


    The Vegas. Edge: Steelers.
    This is all sharp money on the Steelers.
  • Percentage of money on Kansas City: 66% (20,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Steelers.
  • Steelers are 7-1 ATS after losing by 20+ in the Ben Roethlisberger era.
  • Mike Tomlin is 19-12 ATS after losing as a favorite.
  • Opening Line: Chiefs -4.
  • Opening Total: 47.
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Chiefs 27, Steelers 26
    Steelers +4.5 -115 (5 Units) -- Correct; +$500
    Over 45.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Steelers 19, Chiefs 13






    Los Angeles Chargers (1-4) at Oakland Raiders (2-3)
    Line: Raiders by 3. Total: 48.5.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: No Line (Carr).
    Walt's Calculated Line: Raiders -5.5 (Carr) or Chargers -1 (Manuel).
    Sunday, Oct 15, 4:05 PM
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Raiders.

    A reminder that Jerks of the Week for this week is up, so just click the link. This week's jerks entry is Hayley Geftman-Gold, Redskins Marching Band Play, Memes Chip Guy.

    OAKLAND OFFENSE: KRON4 News, whatever that might be, is reporting that Derek Carr is expected to play this week. This is obviously huge for the Raiders. E.J. Manuel wasn't exactly horrible in Carr's absence, but considering how much of the team's success is predicated on the passing attack, Oakland needed Carr back as soon as possible.

    Carr returning to the field is step one. Step two would entail Amari Cooper catching passes and Jared Cook refraining from fumbling. Both players have been disappointments this year, so Carr will certainly target Michael Crabtree more than anyone. The problem with this, however, is that Crabtree has a tough matchup against Casey Hayward. And speaking of difficult matchups, I don't know how right tackle Marshall Newhouse is going to keep the stellar Melvin Ingram out of the backfield.

    The Raiders can make things easy on Carr in his return by pounding the rock with Marshawn Lynch, but that hasn't been a winning strategy thus far. Lynch is averaging just 3.4 yards per carry despite running behind one of the best offensive lines in the NFL. Things might be different this week, however, as the Chargers have surrendered at least 119 rushing yards to every single opponent they've faced.

    SAN DIEGO OFFENSE: Philip Rivers did a good job last week of keeping possessions alive in an attempt to keep up with the Giants until Odell Beckham Jr. got hurt. Rivers will likely have to orchestrate lots of scoring drives once more in a possible shootout.

    Considering some of the liabilities the Raiders' defense has, that has a good chance of happening. Oakland's top cornerback this year has been rookie Gareon Conley, but he's going to miss this game. David Amerson could return after being sidelined last week, but he has struggled this year, and I don't think he'll perform well in this contest. Meanwhile, Oakland's linebacking corps is atrocious, which should once again open up opportunities for Hunter Henry.

    Melvin Gordon will also be heavily involved as both a runner and a receiver out of the backfield. Gordon will expose the linebackers as well, and he should be able to run on a defense that has surrendered 114 or more rushing yards to its previous three opponents. The Chargers being able to pound the ball and complete short, but effective passes to Gordon and Henry will be important considering the huge mismatch the Raiders have, with Khalil Mack going up against inept right tackle Joseph Barksdale.

    RECAP: There's no spread yet, as the sportsbooks apparently don't trust KRON4 News. This is understandable, but I can't give out a concrete pick just yet.

    I think I'm going to be on the Chargers. If this line is six or higher, I will be betting on them. If it's seven or more, this will be a huge play. The Chargers always find ways to lose, but one thing they usually do is keep games close because of Rivers. Oakland's defense is soft enough for Rivers to generate one of his patented back-door covers, if he'll even need it.

    Also, another thing to keep in mind is that the Raiders have to battle the Chiefs on Thursday night, so it'll be difficult for them to be fully focused against a 1-4 squad.

    THURSDAY THOUGHTS: There's still no line on this game despite KRON4's breaking news. Check back Saturday for my pick, as we'll surely have a posted spread by then.

    SATURDAY NOTES: A spread has been posted, and it's -3.5. I don't get it. The Chargers were +3.5 at the Giants, so this is saying that the Giants and the Raiders, with Derek Carr back, are equal. This is obviously wrong. With Carr, the Raiders are a top-10 team, and it seems as though people have forgotten that. This spread should be -5.5 at least. I'm going to limit this to two units, however, as I'm scared of Philip Rivers with the hook. There's definitely a decent chance that he generates a back-door score.

    SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: Wow, the Raiders are only -3. This spread makes no sense to me. I considered moving this to three units, but Michael Irvin, who had an injury similar to the one Carr suffered, said that he doesn't think Carr will be 100 percent for this game, so that makes me hesitant to wager on Oakland at all. I'm going to drop this to one unit as a result. I can't believe I'm listening to Irvin about anything, but he has experience with these sorts of injuries.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: I wish I could be more confident in Derek Carr's health. Unfortunately, this is just a one-unit wager.


    The Psychology. Edge: Chargers.
    The Raiders have to play Thursday against the Chiefs.


    The Vegas. Edge: None.
    Sharp action on Chargers +3.5.
  • Percentage of money on Los Angeles: 58% (14,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Chargers.
  • History: Raiders have won the last 4 meetings (Raiders 11-5 ATS last 16).
  • Philip Rivers is 23-9 ATS as a road underdog of 3.5 or more.
  • Raiders are 10-34 ATS at home vs. teams with losing records.
  • Raiders are 9-26 ATS as home favorites since November 2005.
  • Opening Line: .
  • Opening Total: .
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Raiders 30, Chargers 24
    Raiders -3 -105 (1 Unit) -- Incorrect; -$105
    Over 48.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Chargers 17, Raiders 16






    New York Giants (0-5) at Denver Broncos (3-1)
    Line: Broncos by 14. Total: 38.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Broncos -6.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Broncos -12.
    Sunday, Oct 15, 8:30 PM
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Broncos.

    It's time for a Ross Avila update! If you somehow missed it, Ross Avila, some stupid kid who is desperate for attention on my Facebook wall, challenged me this summer:



    If you think this is dumb, don't tell that to Ross. This means the world to him:



    Ross will be posting his picks every Saturday on my Facebook wall, so I'll relay them here when he gets around to his selections. Mine will be the five I pick for the SuperContest, which I'll analyze here each Saturday. I'll also post the picks of the top entrants, so check that link out Saturday evening.

    I'm now 13-11-1, which isn't great, but not terrible either. Ross, however, just went 1-4, bringing his record down to 7-17-1. Ross completely embarrassed himself last week, picking against all five of my selections. It was pathetic, as he cheated in an attempt to catch up. The fact that he knew my picks so he could go against me meant that he used unfair tactics to his advantage. Hilariously, he was penalized for it. I suppose I should've expected such a thing from someone who pretends to be a Google intern.

    A friend of mine had a funny suggestion - that I should offer to concede to Ross if he can get over .500 by the end of the year. What does everyone think? Should I offer Ross that deal?

    NEW YORK OFFENSE: Odell Beckham Jr. is out for the year. Brandon Marshall is out for the year. Sterling Shepard will miss some action. All it took was one game, but New York's entire receiving corps was demolished. Eli Manning's best remaining weapons are Roger Lewis and Evan Engram. What a sad state of affairs.

    All hope wouldn't be lost if the Giants had a solid offensive line. They could pound the ball effectively and win low-scoring grinders that way. Unfortunately, that's not the case. Their blocking is still atrocious, and I don't know how they're going to deal with Ambassador Von Miller, Shaq Barrett, Derek Wolfe and the rest of Denver's front. They have mismatches all over the place.

    The one area where the Giants could possibly excel is by getting Engram involved. The Broncos have been weak to tight ends this year because of their middling linebacking corps. However, the Giants haven't used Engram as much as they should have thus far, though that will probably change going forward.

    DENVER OFFENSE: Lost in the utter mess that is the Giants' offense is the fact that New York can still play great defense. Olivier Vernon has to return from injury, and it sounds like that could happen this week. Vernon will teach rookie Garett Bolles a lesson or two, while Snacks Harrison will have his way with Max Garcia. I also like Jason Pierre-Paul's matchup against inept right tackle Menelik Watson. Pierre-Paul has struggled this year, but going against Watson should wake him up.

    Meanwhile, the Giants have some nice matchups in the secondary. Janoris Jenkins is playing excellent football, and he should be able to lock down Demaryius Thomas. Landon Collins will undoubtedly make a big play or two, and New York will need him to come away with a big interception or forced fumble.

    That said, the Broncos will still have some offensive success. They'll be able to run the ball effectively, as the Giants have surrendered 99 rushing yards or more to every single opponent they've battled this year. New York's awful linebackers can't cover tight ends either, so A.J. Derby figures to have another big game.

    RECAP: I know the Giants are in rough shape, but I don't think the Broncos can score consistently enough to warrant being 12-point favorites over any team not named the Browns or Dolphins. Denver scored 16 points in each of its previous two games prior to the bye, and if that trend continues against the Giants' stout defense, all New York will need to cover this spread is five points. I think that could happen. Maybe.

    I'm going to take the Giants because this line is too high, but I'm not going to bet that side. What am I going to do is make a small wager on the under, as this game should be a very low-scoring affair.

    THURSDAY THOUGHTS: I thought the Giants would band together and have an inspired performance. Instead, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has been suspended because he wouldn't listen to Ben McAdoo, or whatever. I worry about McAdoo possibly losing his team, so I'm going to make the switch to the Broncos.

    SATURDAY NOTES: The Giants are in even worse shape than we thought. In addition to all the receivers being out, and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie being suspended, Olivier Vernon and Weston Richburg will be missing from the lineup as well. Oh, and Landon Collins is banged up, too. Collins is expected to play, but he may not be completely healthy. Wow. I am still concerned the Broncos may not be able to score very much, but considering all the injuries, I may decide to put a unit on the Broncos come Sunday.

    SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: This line has moved to -13 with tons of money on the Broncos. I'm going to switch back to my original selection of the Giants. This spread is too high, and there's a chance the Broncos don't even get more than 13 points.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: This spread is up to -13.5 in most places and even -14 at Bovada. We've seen a lot of nonsense today - how the hell did the Dolphins win outright in Atlanta after being down 17-0, and where in the world was Tampa's effort? - and perhaps this game will continue that trend. This line is too high, especially at +14 -115. That said, I can't bring myself to bet the Giants because they have so many injuries on top of their receivers. Like, if Olivier Vernon or Weston Richburg were playing, I could bet a unit or two on New York. I can't pull the trigger, though I do like the under a bit.


    The Psychology. Edge: Giants.
    The Broncos have had two weeks to hear about how great they are following their victory over the Raiders. Now, they have this non-conference matchup before two divisional battles.


    The Vegas. Edge: Giants.
    All the money is on the Broncos, which is predictable.
  • Percentage of money on Denver: 71% (18,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Giants.
  • Giants are 47-33 ATS on the road since 2006 as long as they're not favored by 3.5 or more.
  • Eli Manning is 41-31 ATS as an underdog since 2007.
  • Opening Line: Broncos -9.5.
  • Opening Total: 41.
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Broncos 16, Giants 6
    Giants +14 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Under 38 (0.5 Units) -- Correct; +$50
    Giants 23, Broncos 10






    Indianapolis Colts (2-3) at Tennessee Titans (2-3)
    Line: Titans by 7. Total: 46.5.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: No Line (Mariota).
    Walt's Calculated Line: Titans -6 (Mariota) or Colts -2.5 (Cassel).
    Monday, Oct 16, 8:30 PM
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: TBA.

    This week on ESPN, we're going to have some bald dude and Jon Gruden calling the shots instead the great preseason homers like Kevin Reilly, Ron Wolfley and Don Tollefson, inept ESPN guys Emmitt, Herman Edwards and Matt Millen, and aloof people like Dan Fouts. Here's what it would sound like if these seven dudes (and some special guests) were calling this game:

    Reilly: Welcome to the city of Tennessee! Tonight, the Baltimore Colts take on the Tennessee Tigers. Because the producers complained to me about not paying attention to last week's game, they made me prepare for this boring game. Guys, did you know that Andrew Luck is out? I drafted him in fantasy and I was wondering why I'm 0-5, but now I know that I need to bench him.

    Emmitt: Luck, how do you not knowed that Andrew Johnson caught the injury bug? This mean that he outside, probably camping, and a bug bite him to get the injury. This a real problem and I always wonderin' why the players who play in the National Conference of Football not usin' bug spray.

    Herm: NOT THAT TYPE OF BUG! NOT THAT SORT OF BUG! NOT THAT KIND OF BUG! NOT THAT VERSION OF BUG! TALKING ABOUT A FIGURATIVE BUG! A BUG THAT'S FIGURATIVE! A FIGURATIVE SORT OF BUG! NOT A LITERAL SORT OF BUG! NOT LITERAL! FIGURATIVE! THE OPPOSITE OF FIGURATIVE IS LITERAL! THE OPPOSITE OF LITERAL IS BUG! I MEAN IT'S FIGURATIVE! THE OPPOSITE; NOT THE BUG! BUG'S NOT FIGURATIVE! ACTUALLY, IT IS FIGURATIVE! IT'S JUST NOT LITERAL! BUG'S NOT LITERAL! LITERAL... uhh... ummm...

    Reilly: Why the f*** couldn't you stay away longer than week? I would've complained that you took the week off to buy Halloween candy, Herm, but I wanted you gone, and I was hoping you'd eat poison candy and die! Hahahaha! Anyway, let's welcome in this week's guest, Cam Newton, who has the day off because he played on Thursday. Cam, mother asked me to ask you something about routes. What the hell are routes?

    Cam Newton: It's funny that your mother is asking you to ask me about routes. I think it's funny when mothers ask their sons to ask football players about routes.

    Reilly: What did you say about mother!? You're going to pay for insulting her, Cam. And I'm only saying this because if I don't defend her honor, she won't give me my allowance. I still want to be friends with you, Cam. Will you come over to play Chutes and Ladders with me tomorrow?

    Cam Newton: It's funny that pathetic sports broadcasters are asking me to hang out with them. I think it's funny when pathetic, old men ask me to hang out with them.

    Tollefson: Cam, I'm definitely neither old nor pathetic. Will you come over my house instead? I won't make you play a dumb game like Chutes and Ladders. I'll show you the collection of women I have tied up in my basement. We can throw cabbage at them and yell at them for not cooking and cleaning for me naked, as if that's such a severe punishment.

    Fouts: And here's what he means by Chutes and Ladders. First of all, there's a ladder. This is a wooden or metal object you use to reach high places. And here's what I mean by high. It's a place that's up, but not down. And here's what I mean by up. You tilt your head up, and you look up, and that's up, as opposed to tilting your head down, and you look down, and that's down. And here's what I mean by chutes. When you see a train, you should open your ears, and once you open your ears, you might hear it say, "chute! chute!" That's what I mean by chute.

    Reilly: You idiot, that's not what a chute is! It's the opposite of a ladder, where instead of going up, you take a chute to go down. Cam, it's OK, I'll show you when you come over my house, and mother will make you macaroni and cheese with hot dogs.

    Cam Newton: It's funny that you're making your mother make food for me. I think it's funny when mothers make food for me. Hold on, one sec, my phone's ringing. Hello? Yes. OK. Guys, I must issue an apology because Gatorade has dropped me, and my agent says I lost a lot of fans. Now I know I need to make an apology. Guys, I'm sorry I said what I said. I have two little girls at home though, so it's OK.

    Wolfley: I HAVE TWO LITTLE GIRLS AT HOME, TOO. THEY ARE NOT MY DAUGHTERS, THOUGH. THEY JUST SHOWED UP IN MY HOME OUT OF NOWHERE AND THEY TRIED TO SELL ME COOKIES. THEY MUST BE FROM THE COOKIE FACTORY. I TOLD THEM I WOULD NOT BUY A COOKIE UNLESS IT HAD LIPS ON IT, AND THEY LOOKED AT ME ODDLY.

    Millen: Ron, I have the same situation in my home, except there are two 100-percent USDA Men there selling cookies. It's OK, though, I kind of like having them there. Instead of trying to get them to leave, we take turns inserting cookies and milk into each other's backsides. Cam, why don't you join us? We'll insert cookies and milk into your backside first!

    Cam Newton: It's funny that you think I'd come over to get cookies and milk up the backside. I think it's funny when weirdos who like dudes think I want cookies and milk in the backside. Hold on, one sec, my phone's ringing. Hello? Yes. OK. Guys, I must issue an apology because Just the Basics purified water has dropped me, and my agent says I lost a lot of fans. Now I know I need to make an apology. Guys, I'm sorry I said what I said. I have two little girls at home though, so it's OK.

    Charles Davis: Kevin, I just heard Cam talk about Just the Basics purified water, Kevin. Let's name more bottled water companies, Kevin. How about Deer Park, Kevin? What about Dasani, Kevin? Let's chat about Aquafina, Kevin. Let's talk about Poland Spring, Kevin. Why not discuss Perrier, Kevin? How about Nestle Pure Life, Kevin? Let's take a look at Ice Mountain, Kevin. How about you name one, Kevin? I named them all except S. Pellegrin and Panama Blue, Kevin. I made this tough for you, Kevin Try to name another one, Kevin.

    Reilly: I-

    Charles Davis: You guessed Pepperoni Pizza Bottled Water, Kevin? There's no such thing about Pepperoni Pizza Bottled Water, Kevin! How silly of you to guess that, Kevin!

    Cam Newton: Actually, guys, my agent just called me, and he said the only company that will now sponsor me is Pepperoni Pizza Bottled Water, so I think that's a real thing.

    Reilly: HAHAHAHAHA YES, I FINALLY GOT ONE RIGHT! EVEN THOUGH I DIDN'T EVEN SAY IT, I'LL TAKE IT BECAUSE I F***ING HATE YOU CHARLES DAVIS! NOW WHO'S RIGHT!? ME! I'M RIGHT! EAT IT, SCUM! LOOK AT ME, I'M COOL AND I'M SMART, AND CAM NEWTON'S COMING OVER MY HOUSE! We'll be back after this!

    TENNESSEE OFFENSE: There's no line on this game, and unfortunately, we don't have KRON4 reporting news about Marcus Mariota. In fact, Mike Mularkey said that Mariota could be a game-time decision, so we could be waiting on a spread for a long time.

    You better believe the sportsbooks will be waiting until the 11th hour to post a line. There's that much of a disparity between Mariota and Matt Cassel. I think Cassel is the worst quarterback in the NFL. He was horrible in 2015 for the Cowboys, and now he's two years older. I don't think he can do anything besides fumble at this stage of his career. Cassel failed to expose Miami's poor secondary, so I don't think he'll have any success against Indianapolis'. Like the Dolphins, the Colts are horrible against tight ends, and Cassel won't be able to do anything about that either.

    Mariota, on the other hand, should be able to expose the liabilities Indianapolis has in its defensive backfield. Vontae Davis is definitely not 100 percent, so the Titans will have a great matchup with one of their receivers. Mariota's legs and DeMarco Murray's pass-catching ability should also help against a poor linebacking corps, though there's no guarantee that Mariota will be mobile even if he plays.

    INDIANAPOLIS OFFENSE: Jacoby Brissett definitely shows flashes of brilliance at times, but he often follows that up with a horrible mistake. Take overtime, for example. He hit a bomb to T.Y. Hilton, but then threw an awful interception on the next play. There will be opportunities for Brissett to have more positives than negatives in this contest, especially against Tennessee's shaky secondary.

    That said, it may not matter if the Colts' offensive line doesn't hold up. Indianapolis didn't face many great pass-rushers when taking on the 49ers, but they won't have that same luxury this week. Jurrell Casey and Brian Orkapo are playing well following slow starts, and the former has a very easy matchup in this game. The same can be said for Derrick Morgan, who is set to take on poor right tackle Joe Haeg.

    I have to imagine that Indianapolis' scoring unit will be pretty inconsistent, mirroring the play of its quarterback. T.Y. Hilton will catch some deep passes, but that's about it for the aerial attack. Brissett will scramble for some first downs. Either Frank Gore or Marlon Mack will rip off a big run or two. Other than that, the Colts should expect to punt often.

    RECAP: I really have no idea what this spread is going to be. I don't even know if Mariota is going to play, and if he does, it's unclear how healthy he'll be. I'm inclined to take the Colts for now, but I may switch this selection to Tennessee if the line is revealed to be too low.

    THURSDAY THOUGHTS: As with the Raiders-Chargers game, no spread has been posted yet.

    SATURDAY NOTES: There's still no line on this game, as Marcus Mariota is expected to be a game-time decision.

    SUNDAY MORNING NOTES: 5Dimes posted a line of Titans -7.5, and it dropped to -7. I'm going to hold off on a pick until Monday when Marcus Mariota's status is known.

    PICK POSTED: I'm kicking myself for not putting in a small bet on the Colts yesterday when they were +7.5 or +8. This spread has moved to +7 -120 or +6.5 in some books. I think that's about the right number, but I'm still taking the Colts. We've seen quarterbacks come back from injuries too early. For example, Derek Carr yesterday, and Matthew Stafford yesterday, and Sam Bradford two weeks ago. Mariota probably isn't 100 percent, so the Titans may have difficulty winning this game, let alone prevailing by more than a touchdown.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: Nothing has changed from this afternoon. I still like the Colts, but I wanted them at +7.5 or higher. At +7 -120, it's not very appealing, as Indianapolis is a bad team that could implode like it did at Seattle a few weeks ago. However, it seems clear that Marcus Mariota isn't 100 percent. That's why I'm taking the Colts, and it's almost certainly why the sharps bet this line down from +8.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: None.
    Equal action.
  • Percentage of money on Tennessee: 53% (42,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: None.
  • History: Colts have won 24 of the last 28 meetings.
  • Opening Line: Titans -7.
  • Opening Total: 49.
  • Weather: .


    Week 6 NFL Pick: Titans 21, Colts 17
    Colts +7 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Under 46.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Titans 36, Colts 22





    Week 6 NFL Picks - Early Games
    Philadelphia at Carolina, New England at NY Jets, Miami at Atlanta, Chicago at Baltimore, San Francisco at Washington, Detroit at New Orleans, Cleveland at Houston, Green Bay at Minnesota


    Prop/Teaser/Parlay Picks
    A list of some of my favorite team/player prop picks this week
    (Offense & defensive ROY picks to be counted whenever winners are announced.) Picks carried over on a week-to-week basis will be in black.


  • Teaser: Lions +10.5, Rams +8.5 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220


    LOADING COMMENTS...



    NFL Picks - Jan. 17


    2021 NFL Mock Draft - Jan. 13


    Fantasy Football Rankings - Jan. 11


    2022 NFL Mock Draft - Nov. 15


    NFL Power Rankings - Nov. 14


    2020 College Football Recruiting Rankings - April 14


    2020 NBA Mock Draft - Sept. 27




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    My Team-by-Team ATS Record
    This section shows how well I do when picking each team this year. The purpose is to see how well I read each team. Pushes are not displayed. Winning/losing streak in parentheses.

    Cowboys: 11-5 (2014-19: 47-50)
    Bears: 6-11 (2014-19: 45-48)
    Bucs: 7-9 (2014-19: 44-45)
    49ers: 8-8 (2014-19: 53-44)
    Eagles: 8-8 (2014-19: 55-46)
    Lions: 9-6 (2014-19: 53-42)
    Falcons: 9-7 (2014-19: 55-45)
    Cardinals: 10-6 (2014-19: 45-50)
    Giants: 3-13 (2014-19: 52-41)
    Packers: 12-4 (2014-19: 54-46)
    Panthers: 13-3 (2014-19: 47-52)
    Rams: 5-12 (2014-19: 53-41)
    Redskins: 7-8 (2014-19: 47-48)
    Vikings: 9-7 (2014-19: 51-45)
    Saints: 7-10 (2014-19: 49-50)
    Seahawks: 8-9 (2014-19: 43-56)
    Bills: 10-7 (2014-19: 52-42)
    Bengals: 9-5 (2014-19: 42-52)
    Colts: 8-7 (2014-19: 50-45)
    Broncos: 9-7 (2014-19: 45-48)
    Dolphins: 12-4 (2014-19: 47-46)
    Browns: 7-9 (2014-19: 46-44)
    Jaguars: 4-11 (2014-19: 41-55)
    Chargers: 8-6 (2014-19: 46-49)
    Jets: 8-8 (2014-19: 50-40)
    Ravens: 5-11 (2014-19: 48-47)
    Texans: 10-5 (2014-19: 48-47)
    Chiefs: 12-4 (2014-19: 56-50)
    Patriots: 6-10 (2014-19: 55-53)
    Steelers: 7-10 (2014-19: 56-43)
    Titans: 10-7 (2014-19: 49-47)
    Raiders: 7-9 (2014-19: 43-52)
    Divisional: 43-47 (2011-19: 405-394)
    2x Game Edge: 63-60 (2011-19: 213-210)
    2x Motivation Edge: 45-30 (2011-19: 347-288)
    2x Spread Edge: 42-33 (2011-19: 61-55)
    2x Vegas Edge: 25-22 (2011-19: 320-335)
    2x Trend Edge: 18-13 (2011-19: 250-228)
    Double Edge: 27-21 (2011-19: 122-107)
    Triple Edge: 5-4 (2011-19: 21-18)

    2003 Preseason: 3 | 4 | 5
    2003 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 20 | XXXVIII
    2004 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2004 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XXXIX
    2005 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
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