Alright, alright, alright.
Betting with conviction got us a 3-2 record in our Best Bets last week, but the truth is a little bit deeper.
Although we did have money on all those games, the majority of it was on the Patriots who played with our hearts before finally extending their lead into the twenties. We also managed to add a Cardinals pick to go 4-1 against the spread.
This week, we are doubling down on betting with conviction by trusting our gut to find the places where we think our money should be. In Thursday’s Best Bets we are going to debut a new confidence measure to make it clear which bets are the crown jewels of that week and which are squeaking in.
So with that in mind, here are the five bets that jump off the page to me at first glance:
NE -16.5 vs NYG
There are so many factors here that have made me already put money down on this game:
The Patriots won us money our biggest win in a very similar situation last week
The Giants are without Sterling Shepard, Wayne Gallman, and most likely Evan Engram and Saquon Barkley
Bill Belichick hates the Giants
A rookie QB is coming to Gillete
Tom Brady hates the Giants
The game is on a short week
I could keep going, but this early in the week this is a gut pick, and my gut is screaming at me to keep betting this line throughout the week. All you really need to know is that the Patriots allow 6.8 points per game and will be facing a rookie on Thursday Night without some of his best weapons. If the Giants exceed expectations and score 10 miracle points, they currently sport one of the worst defenses that gives up 25 a game even after giving up 3 to a miserable Redskins team.
In all the possible outcomes, the most likely puts the Patriots approaching 30 and the Giants in the single digits.
I can’t say for certain, but it feels like this might be making an appearance in our Thursday Best Bets.
KC -5 vs. HOU
Let me get this straight. Houston beats an atrocious Atlanta team that still scored 33 and left additional points on the field while Kansas City loses to a solid Colts team in a game it didn’t have its top 2 wide receivers or nose tackle and in which its quarterback aggravated an ankle injury and the result of this is that the Chiefs are favored by less than a touchdown to a team coached by Bill O’Brien.
That is a long-winded way of saying that I think that the Chiefs are a much better team than the Texans, and I think that this line is a little suspicious.
If the Chiefs had beaten the Colts last week and if Houston had beaten Atlanta say 31-27, then I think this line is at least a touchdown, if not more. Both of those results seem likely to happen if we replayed last week, although Atlanta’s defense might be unfathomably bad. I’m treating this like it should be a touchdown spread, and that means we have extra points here.
Why? Well remember that this Texans offense was averaging 11.5 points at home before last week. Remember that this Texans team should have lost to the Jags at home, a team Kansas City handled on the road. Remember that most teams don’t roll into Arrowhead like the Colts just did and quiet the crowd.
Later in the week, once all of my research is done, we won’t have to do so much remembering, and we can look at the numbers in this game, but for now I feel confident betting this line with who these two teams are.
Remember this when you win money on Sunday.
NO PK @ JAX
I love this Jacksonville team for so many reasons. Gardner Minshew is electric, Leonard Fournette is on most of my fantasy teams, DJ Chark is breaking out.
But the main reason I love this Jags team is because all of those factors blind people to the fact that this team isn’t actually as good as it is fun. Just look at the names in the previous sentence! This team is even fun to talk about. In reality, though, their ability to beat good teams is questionable.
So far this season, in games Minshew started, the Jags have beaten Tennessee - a team no one understands - and Denver - a team who throws away games willy nilly. The Saints are far better than either of those teams.
What is even more troubling for the stache is that the Saints have been elite against the run this season, especially since Teddy Bridgewater has become their QB. In games where he starts, the Saints are yet to allow more than 52 yards rushing to a running back. That is infinitely more impressive when you realize they were playing the Seahawks, Cowboys, and Bucs - all teams that have run the ball successfully this season.
If the Saints defense comes to play, then Minshew is going to be relied upon to make all the plays himself. He has shown the ability to do a lot of that, but this load feels like it will be too much for him to bare.
I like this line twice as much if Jalen Ramsey is out again, but either way I’m going Saints here.
They have a similar build to Carolina (elite RB, back up QB, speed at WR, strong D) and the Panthers came in and easily took care of the Jags last week.
A lot can change as I do some research, but this is a game that seems as though perception is outpacing reality. Mustaches will do that to you.
ATL -2.5 @ ARI (with eyes on under 52)
I have a feeling this will get bumped out by the time Thursday rolls around, but it is speaking to me in this moment.
Looking at the facts, Atlanta’s defense is terrible, but Arizona is not a team who has shown the ability to take advantage of bad defenses and they may be without David Johnson come game time.
On the flip side, Arizona’s defense is horrible and Atlanta has shown at least some signs of being able to take advantage of that, especially in the secondary. Matt Ryan has thrown for 300 yards in every game this season and some of his top weapons have their best matchups of the season coming this week.
Again, this could drop out of the Best Bets by Thursday, but as of now I see this game going Atlanta’s way by a considerable margin because Kliff Kingsbury is laser focused on kicking the most twenty yard field goals of all time.
It’s going to be a bad game, but that could be a good game for our wallets.
DET @ GB under 47
There are a lot of lines that have not been posted because the quarterback situations are unresolved, but for now, this is my fifth favorite bet after a first look.
Both of these teams have shown a fierce commitment to the run, and both have defenses that can hang with anyone. They both like to play at a slow pace, and even though they both have deep weapons, they are more likely to hide their best stuff in their first meeting of the season.
I’ll do more research on this in the coming days, but this is the time of year where it is beneficial to look closer at divisional matchups. Since each of these teams play each other twice, and since they are always in direct competition for a playoff spot, then often these games are lower scoring as each side tries not to reveal its full self to its opponent.
In this case, the pace, the defenses, and the matchup push my gut towards the under. My brain tells me to look deeper.
In what we’ll be the best matchup of the week, we’ll see which one wins out.