Last Week: 2-3, Season: 2-3
By no means was last week a disaster. Dallas and New England took care of business fairly easily. In the three games we lost, Cam Newton forgot how to throw a football over 9 yards, The Bears defense let the human equivalent of an old broomstick (Joe Flacco) drive down the field to cover, and Klepp’s Lions managed to distract Philip Rivers in the endzone with a lovely group of nuns.
But, losses are losses. I get that. However, it should be of note that there has been a significant change in my life that will impact the strength of my picks for this upcoming week. I turn 22 on Sunday. Now, with the addition of a full year under my belt between Week 2 and Week 3, these picks are not only locks, they might as well have been born in Fort Knox.
Los Angeles (-3) at Cleveland
Sean McVay and the Rams have started 2-0 and look to have the same explosiveness as last season’s campaign. A healthy Cooper Kupp and the depth of the running back stable has bolstered the offense enough to make you forget that their $134 million Berkeley graduate quarterback doesn’t know which direction the sun sets in. Cleveland on the other hand has looked less than spectacular. Although they pulled out a double digit win on the road against the Jets, it was less than inspired. They had consistently dumb defensive penalties that extended drives from Trevor Siemian and Luke Falk. The offensive line is still a mess and Baker Mayfield just hasn’t looked the same with all of his new weapons. I love the Rams in this one, as their defensive line will get to Baker all night. Take the reigning NFC champs and buy yourself one of Odell’s Richard Millie watches.
Carolina at Arizona (+2.5)
Home dogs! After blasting Kyler Murray and his height in Week 1, I liked what I saw out of the young quarterback against a tough Ravens squad. While Kliff Kingsbury’s hesitation to take risks and unleash the offense concerned me, I think they’ll bounce back at home against the depleted Panthers. Whether it is Cam Newton with approximately 0.5 healthy shoulders or Kyle Allen, the Panthers offense will not be able to score enough points to keep up with the birds.
New England at New York Jets (UNDER 43.5)
Remember the golden stat from last week? The under in Patriots games following a double-digit win is now an astonishing 11-0. The Patriots have a simple, clock-chewing strategy against teams they know they will beat. Hell, Ryan Fitzmagic had TWO pick-sixes and the under still covered. Don’t expect Luke Falk to lead the Jets’ offense to more than one score, as the Patriots have yet to give up a touchdown this season. Deflated balls or not, ride the under.
Detroit at Philadelphia (-6)
Danner do you not learn from your mistakes? Although the Lions picked up a big win against Los Angeles’ 17th most popular sports franchise, they caught a ridiculous amount of breaks from the Chargers’ laughable red-zone gameplan. Matthew Stafford still looks like he is on his way to golfing in Florida full time, and Matt Patricia looks like he would bring a full set of clubs to a putt-putt course. On the other side of things, the Eagles are hungry for a win after their disappointment in Atlanta. I expect their defense to fly all over the field and cause havoc for the Detroiters (shoutout Tommy Murray, production assistant all-star). I love Doug Pederson to coach an aggressive game and force the Lions to play catch-up. Load up on Philly.
New Orleans at Seattle (-4.5)
Another line that is affected by an injury. With Drew Brees out and Sean Payton saying that the Saints will use a two-quarterback system, the Seahawks have never felt more appealing. When was the last time a system like that has won on the road? The Saints would be better off running wildcat than letting Teddy Two Gloves try to storm CenturyLink Field. I like Seattle’s defense to pressure Bridgewater and force him into some mistakes. Bet on Russell Wilson to have a typical home game and win by a touchdown.
Shots of Hennessey I will consume this weekend (-6.5) vs Luke Falk completions.