We're back for another round of NFL picks against the spread! I'm off to a 1-0 start this week thanks to Matt Hasselbeck, Frank Gore and Andre Johnson. The old school crew led the Indianapolis Colts to a road upset of the Houston Texans. I was hesitant to pick the Colts because of the absence of Andrew Luck, but then I remembered the Texans quarterback situation was a bit of a mess.
For the second straight season, I am back for the LVH SuperContest. SB Nation's partners over at Odds Shark are sponsoring my entry again. The contest requires selecting 5 games each week and picking them against the spread. This year's contest is expected to have nearly 1,400 participants, including myself, Matt Ufford and Eric Sollenberger from SB Nation. Everybody picks their own five games and there will be a running leaderboard HERE. You can follow my standings under the name "Fooch".
Last year, I finished 39-45-1. This year, I'm off to a decent start. I put together three straight 4-1 weeks, and then slipped a bit this past week, going 3-2. The Broncos and Seahawks both came up short in games in which they had significant opportunities to put the cover away. Such is life. I am currently 15-5 through four weeks, and that gives me some cushion if things go south in a hurry! I went 6-7-1 overall ATS with my picks.
Here are my SuperContest picks for Week 5:
Browns (+6.5) over RAVENS
FALCONS (-7) over Washington
BENGALS (-3) over Seahawks
Cardinals (-2.5) over LIONS
Broncos (-4.5) over RAIDERS
It seems like every Friday evening I find myself staring at the games and trying to will myself to figure out the good options. And every week, I make my picks and begin second-guessing myself fairly quickly. This week is no different, particularly with an underdog and three road teams in the mix. I generally have stuck with favorites, but I was trying to decide between Browns over Ravens or Titans over Bills. I'm not overly comfortable with this, but hopefully the Browns can build on last week's strong showing in San Diego.
The Cardinals and Broncos are road favorites. The Lions almost beat Seattle last week, but considering how awful that Seahawks offensive line is, Seattle really should have won that game by a lot more. Arizona is coming off the upset at home to St. Louis, but I think they can bounce back.
I was intrigued by the Raiders this week, but I remembered their two wins have come against a bad Baltimore Ravens defense, and a bad Cleveland Browns team. The Broncos offense is a serious question mark right now, but that defense is much better than the Raiders have faced since their Week 1 beatdown at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals. I am counting on that Broncos defense.
As for the Bengals over the Seahawks? I am rolling the dice that Andy Dalton will not come back to earth after a nice start to the season. Hopefully no Marshawn Lynch slows the Seahawks down a little bit.
And I continue to not touch the 49ers with a ten-foot pole. That touchdown is a lot of points to be getting, but I am just not remotely comfortable with the 49ers offense. I could actually see them springing an upset this week in New Jersey. I also could see them taking a thumping at the hands of Eli Manning and the Giants. That's a recipe for just staying away.
Here are all my picks for Week 5
TEXANS vs. Colts (+1): Colts - Win
BUCCANEERS vs. Jaguars (+3): Jaguars
TITANS vs. Bills (-2.5): Titans
RAVENS vs. Browns (+6.5): Browns
FALCONS vs. Washington (+7): Falcons
CHIEFS vs. Bears (+9): Bears
EAGLES vs. Saints (+4.5): Eagles
PACKERS vs. Rams (+9): Packers
BENGALS vs. Seahawks (+3): Bengals
LIONS vs. Cardinals (-2.5): Cardinals
COWBOYS vs. Patriots (-8.5): Patriots
RAIDERS vs. Broncos (-4.5): Broncos
GIANTS vs. 49ers (+7): Giants
CHARGERS vs. Steelers (+3): Chargers