Indianapolis Colts vs Houston Texans Free Pick & Preview

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Indianapolis Colts (-3) @ Houston Texans Free Pick & Preview: Let me start by saying I think these two teams are way more similar than their records suggest. One is 10-0, the other 5-5, yet I think the Colts are just 3-7 points better than the Texans – but 3 points, and the Peyton Manning factor, that has me on the Colts side once again. I know this Colts team isn’t 10-0 worthy, they’ve needed some help along the way – but they are 10-0, and if I can’t find a better reason than “they should probably lose one of these days, why not this week” then I’m just going to go ahead and keep betting them if the spread isn’t too grand. 3 is never too much….

The Colts/Texans game has been a close affair in 5 of the last 6 meetings – but the Colts have won the last 5. Indy is 6-3-1 ATS this year, and has basically dominated against the spread while traveling – 5-0 ATS on the road this season. The Texans haven’t been great at home, and with even less of a commitment to the run (and the ball in Steve Slaton’s hands less than earlier this year) I don’t think the Texans will take advantage of that leaky Colts run D.

I think this game is going to come right down to it, maybe even the Colts down 3 with a couple minutes left in the game – but even then, I think I’d buck the odds and go with Peyton – the guy has IT.

Miami Dolphins vs Buffalo Bills NFL Free Pick

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Miami Dolphins (-3) @ Buffalo Bills NFL Free Pick: I’ve been a big supporter of the Bills, saying often that they aren’t as bad as people think, and sure, sometimes that has kicked me right in the butt (see the Titans/Bills game a couple week ago when the Bills were right with Tennessee until they gave up 300 points in the 4th quarter, again) and sometimes it’s worked out for me (see last week’s game against the Jaguars), but I think this match-up ends up being just a little too tough for the Bills.

Usually, if Buffalo’s defense needs to focus on just one aspect of an opposing offense (just the run or just the pass) they do a pretty good job of making that tough for their opponent. But this is Miami, and they will pretty much run on anyone, and they won’t abandon that idea. Even without Ronnie Brown, they still have one of the more talented run blocking offensive lines in the league, and a great running back filling in as the full time guy – you might remember him from the Saints – or pre-marijuana Dolphins, Ricky Williams. Yeah, Ricky is back, folks, and he’s better than ever – or at least better than you think.

The Dolphins have won 3 of their last 4, covering in 3 of those games as well. Over their last 7 games they are 5-2 straight up and against the spread as well, and they have given fits to some very good teams this season, New Orleans, New England, Indianapolis, etc. – they are a good team. Not always the luckiest, but good nonetheless.

The 3 points shouldn’t be too much, I like the Bills, think this one will be close, but 27-17 is what I’m thinking.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs Atlanta Falcons Football Pick

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+13.5) @ Atlanta Falcons Football Pick: I knew you’d be able to get this game at a better number later in the week, because despite what Atlanta’s recent history suggests, everybody thinks this offense is too explosive to play a close game against a tomato can like the Buccos. But wait, just like that, I was wrong – the line actually went down from the 13.5 I got it at on Monday Night – and now sits from 11.5 to 13 – both of which I think are decent bets, but obviously not as good as the touchdown and two field goal loss by the Bucs that would still pay me for a win. Regardless, check out my thoughts and see which way you want to go.

The public liked Atlanta so much, 60%, that the line went down in their favor – hmmm… Vegas doesn’t know everything, but I’m just saying. Tampa had played well in 3 of 4 games before getting beat up by the Saints last week, 38-7. They played Miami tough (probably should have won), beat up on Green Bay (the 10 point win probably doesn’t tell the whole story) and were right there with the Panthers two weeks prior to that (they also got smoked 35-7 by the Patriots somewhere in-between there, but that was in England, what happen in England, well, sucks – just ask Avi from “Snatch”).  They’ve played solid football under rookie QB, Josh Freeman, and they can run the ball. That gets me excited.

The Falcons aren’t a double digit favorite team, as you can see by their 5-5 record, and their two wins by 13 or more points all season long. The Falcons beat up on the 49ers and Washington Redskins. Tampa has played 6 of their 10 games within 13 points of their opponent. Yeah, they have one win, sure, but a running game and a young passer with a couple solid receiving options – against the Falcons defense? – yeah, I like some points going up for the Bucs. I also like Tampa’s chances of slowing the Falcons offense with Turner out. Go Bucs!

New York Giants vs Denver Broncos Pick & Preview

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New York Giants @ Denver Broncos (+7) Pick & Preview: The Giants have lost my trust, and while the Broncos have played like piss, and lost four straight headed into this game with New York – I actually think they are back to being the “prove we’re better than you think we are” team they started out the season as. After starting the season with some big wins and 6-0, face it, the Broncos started getting a lot of love. Orton was celebrated, Marshall was happy, and Josh McDaniels was the next best football mind stemming from the Bill Belichick tree. Funny what four weeks can do to an NFL franchise.

But like I said, this is where the Broncos are most comfortable. They are underdogs by a touchdown at home this week – and the public loves the visitor. I know the Broncos will use that as motivation this week, and I think that makes them a nice cover value here.

Plus, the Giants, it’s not like they’ve played solid ball of late either. After getting blasted by New Orleans and Philadelphia (also losing to Arizona and San Diego), the Giants just barely squeaked out a cover the Atlanta Falcons in overtime. It looked like they were scared to death, and playing too reserved down the stretch. That allowed the Falcons to get right back in it, in turn I lost some trust in a very talented Giants team.

Seven is too many.

Oakland Raiders vs Dallas Cowboys Point Spread Pick

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Oakland Raiders (+14) @ Dallas Cowboys Point Spread Pick: The Oakland Raiders aren’t a good football team, but they have a solid defense and they are a more efficient offense when JaMarcus Russell and his terrible tunnel vision is sitting on the bench or just lazily watching the game form the sideline. Is Bruce Gradkowski a good quarterback? I’m not going that far – but he’s always been accurate, and while he might not open up the field with a great deep arm or a strong 20-yard out, the guy can find open players and he makes quick decisions.

Those quick decisions will be very important against a Cowboys team that can bring pressure on opposing quarterbacks. The Raiders offensive line is healthier than it’s been in a while, and I think that will open up some running room for the trio of backs in Oakland silver and black.

I also don’t think and offense struggling as much as the Cowboys can give any opponent 14 points. Giving 14 points to the Raiders on National Television doesn’t seem like a good idea either, as they always seem to play close games in those circumstances.

I think Dallas getting just 48% of the bet in this one is proof how ridiculous this line is. These are the Cowboys, they often are on the other side of that public betting line, but not even the normal favorite fans are excited about the Cowboys giving up two touchdowns. And they shouldn’t be. Dallas may be 7-3, but they barely beat KC, and have played in a lot more close games than the final scores suggest. They also are coming off arguably their two worst offensive performances of the season in back-to-back weeks.

All things considered, I’ll take the two touchdowns. Even if they are dressed in silver and black.

Green Bay Packers vs Detroit Lions NFL Free Pick

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Green Bay Packers (-10) @ Detroit Lions NFL Free Pick: The Packers might not play very consistently against good teams (well they do play consistent, as they consistently don’t live up to their projected talent expectations – but you know what I mean) but they do beat up on the tomato cans. Okay, they lost to Tampa Bay – but somebody was bound to lose to the Buccos, and Tampa has played decent football the last few weeks. Prior to that, the Packers were 3-0 against the league’s cellar dwellers, outscoring the Browns, Lions, and Rams 73-20 in those three games.

It might have to do with defensive pressure and the fact that all the tomato cans struggle to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks. If you can’t disrupt what Aaron Rodgers does through the air, you don’t have a chance against the Pack. The Lions have been out-passed in 8 of their 10 games, and have given up an inordinate amount of passing touchdowns through 10 weeks of football. They even gave up 304 yards and 4 touchdowns to Brady Quinn and the Cleveland Browns – yeah, those Browns, the same Browns that probably didn’t have 4 passing touchdowns all season.

I actually like the Lions a little better with Culpepper in there, but that was before Matthew Stafford went all tough-guy on the Browns and came in to throw a game winning touchdown with no time on the clock despite the seperated shoulder that will likely keep him out of this week’s tilt with the Packers. It’s a Nation TV game, and the Packers are going to show up. Getting a short week should help the better team, the team with less injuries. That’s the Pack.