We’ve made it to Week 6 and everything is fine in the NFL.
Games aren’t exactly going to schedule and a global pandemic is still a threat to the season. Still, there are always a few games on the Sunday slate you should avoid betting.
We’re at a point in the league calendar when we’re figuring out who really sucks, who has the potential to make a run in the playoffs and what teams are in NFL purgatory. We’ll showcase a spectrum of squads in this week’s slideshow, but we’ll err on the side of garbage teams — as we tend to do in this thing.
You are not going to want to bet the spreads of every game this week, so here are some matchups you should avoid.
Falcons @ Vikings (-4)
You were surprised when the seven-point underdog Vikings almost upset the Seahawks, right? Well, Minnesota has a chance to beat the lowly Falcons and QB Matt Ryan this week and 4.0 seems like an appetizing spread. But don’t forget how bad Minnesota has been this season, too.
Minnesota and Atlanta have some of the worst defenses in the league. So if you want to bet on this game, maybe take the over. The spread here scares me. The Vikings have been in three one-score games and they could easily be in another one here. But I’m not confident in an offense led by Kirk Cousins, who ranks second in the league in interceptions. Nor am I likely to take a few points with an Atlanta team that allows 32 points per game — also second-worst in the league. This game is a crapshoot. I wouldn’t feel comfortable with either pick here.
Broncos @ Patriots (-8)
This game was supposed to be played last week but it was postponed due to COVID infections on the Patriots. And yesterday, three more players were added to the Pats COVID reserve list. As of this morning, the game is still set to kick off at 1 pm.
Maybe you should stay away from betting this game because the Patriots could still be infectious? The NFL is starting to test on game days now, so that could be inconvenient for a team that has seen five positives since the beginning of the month.
Cam Newton is expected to be back after he was put on the COVID reserve list on Oct. 3. How will he play after contracting the virus?
This is one of the largest spreads of the week. If I were to bet on this game, I’m not sure how comfortable I would be with either team or either QB coming off COVID (Newton) and an injury (Drew Lock).
Ravens @ Eagles (+9.5)
Last year, at the end of Week 6, the Eagles were 3-3 but eventually won their division and made their way into the playoffs. This week, a Philly win could put the Birds atop the NFC East. With Dak Prescott out for the season, the Eagles should be the favorites in the division again… right? Well, don’t get your hopes up yet.
Obviously, the Ravens and Lamar Jackson should be favored here. In their four wins, Baltimore has outscored its opponents 129-42. And every win has been by, at least, 14 points. On the other side of the ball, Carson Wentz leads the league in interceptions and gets sacked more than every QB not named Joe Burrow. I know it’s tempting to lay the points here on a 1-3-1 Eagles team, but… maybe this is the point in the season where they turn it around? I am probably going to regret typing that. But the Eagles have been in close games for the past three weeks. Who’s to say that won’t continue?
Jets @ Dolphins (-9.5)
Of all the matchups featured today, this one is probably the worst. You’re not going to watch this game and you’re not going to want to bet it, either.
The big spread this week is influenced by the Dolphins blowout win last sunday against the Niners. Can the Fins do it again against the 0-5 Jets and backup QB Joe Flacco? Maybe. Probably. But there’s one reason to stay away — that’s the inconsistency of Ryan Fitzpatrick, something Jets fans know all too well.
NFL journeymen aren’t exactly reliable week to week (that’s why they go from team to team, season to season). In his three losses, the QB has turned the ball over five times and has completed around 65 percent of his throws. In the two Miami wins, the Harvard grad has completed 90 percent and 78.5 percent of his throws, respectively.
I know the Jets suck. I know they’re 0-5. I know their coach is worse than a potato. I know they’ve never lost a game by less than nine points. They could get blown out again. But do you really want to risk your cash on either one of these teams? I don’t think so.
If you can’t resist…
I liked the road dogs last week and went 2-2. This Sunday I’ll mostly pick favorites. But, as I say every week, these are games to avoid. You don’t want anything to do with ‘em.
I pick these games every week because… I don’t really have anything to lose. But so far, I’m doing well. I’m 10-9 on the season. That’s still above 50 percent!
Hopefully, I can say the same next week.
- I really don’t like the number in this game so I’m going to take Atlanta to cover. If this line drops for any reason I would take Minny. Four is just a bit too much for me. ATL is 1-1 against the spread in road games. I think they’ll be 2-1 ATS after a trip to the Twin Cities with a new head coach.
- 8 is a lot to lay in any game, but I trust the Patriots and Belichick more in these October games. Hopefully, Cam can return to September form and take care of Denver at home.
- Baltimore is 3-1-1 against the spread and they’re annihilating every opponent they face. The Eagles don’t stand a chance. Ravens to cover and win BIG here.
- If Fitz is inconsistent, Flores may have a good excuse to put Tua in? Whatever QB finishes the game for Miami, I like the Dolphins to obliterate another bad N.Y. team.