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The sharpshooter Week 1: Four gambling picks for Week 1

Fooch is back!

Carolina Panthers v New England Patriots Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images

Every Friday, Fooch, who is running Draft Kings Nation now, and Iwill bring you four games we are betting on for the week. One will be the San Francisco 49ers game, and three other games. Gambling isn’t for everyone, but it makes the games a lot more enjoyable when there’s money on the line. I did this last year, and the results were good enough to brag about. Here’s what we have for this week.

49ers +1 vs. Bucs

Fooch: I’m a big fat homer, and even grabbed the 49ers at +2 back in late April when the schedule was first released. The line is now pick ’em, with some sportsbooks listing the 49ers as a slight favorite. I was looking for value and am getting nearly a field goal’s worth. This game could go any way and not surprise me, but I’m betting on Jameis Winston committing multiple turnovers.

KP: He’s not lying about betting the game when the odds were released. I’m on the 49ers here as well. I gave my reasoning why earlier, but there are too many new moving parts for Tampa Bay on defense. They’ll score points, but turnovers will do them in.

Jags +3.5 vs. Chiefs

Fooch: I’m hoping for a little value from recency bias in this one. The Jaguars were a dumpster fire, and the Chiefs were a revelation with Patrick Mahomes. I think the Chiefs are due for a little bit of regression, while the Jaguars defense remains a threat and the bar for Nick Foles to be better than Blake Bortles is, well, really low. I think this ends up really close and hopefully, a temporarily healthy Leonard Fournette can help the Jaguars control the time of possession.

KP: The Jags kept it close last season with Blake Bortles as their QB. Last year doesn’t matter too much, but some numbers are telling. The Chiefs had the worst run defense in the league by a wide margin last season. Leonard Fournette looked like a new runner during the preseason after losing 20 pounds. Bleeding the clock was the Jags forte last season.

Jacksonville’s defense is one of the few in the NFL that can matchup with Kansas City. The Chiefs were ranked last in early down success rate last season. The Jags thrive off getting offenses into third and longs and getting defenses off the field. I think this is closer than people think. Give me the Jags.

Panthers +2 vs. Rams

Fooch: Consider this weekend a regression weekend in my mind. Cam’s foot injury was a problem, but he seems to be good to go. If Cam is healthy this season, I think the Panthers could join the Falcons in challenging the Saints for divisional supremacy. The Rams remain the team to beat in the NFC West, and a legit Super Bowl contender, but I love me a quality home dog.

Bills +3 vs. Jets

KP: We love the road underdogs this weekend. I’m going to tease the Panthers up and the Cowboys down. The Bills would be my “best bet” if I had to pick one. Quietly, Buffalo had one of the top defenses in the NFL last season. Adding Ed Oliver to go up against a Jets offensive line that struggled to create holes. Josh Allen looked decisive this preseason and giving him a security blanket in Cole Beasley will take plenty of pressure off the second-year pro. McDermott knows Gase, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Buffalo wins. This line is off.

Colts +6.5 vs. Chargers

Fooch: How about one more dog to close things out? Andrew Luck’s abrupt retirement has the entire world turning on the Colts. While their Super Bowl hopes took a big hit, Jacoby Brissett might be a bit underrated. He was getting first team reps all August, so he’s ready in that sense. And I just don’t think he’s as bad as some would think. And the Chargers are a second half of the season kind of team. With the Melvin Gordon melodrama to deal with as well, I think we see the Colts keep this close and get the cover.

Steelers +5.5 vs. Patriots

KP: The Patriots are known for getting off to slow starts to their season. It took Mike Tomlin getting picked a part-year after year to switch up his defense against Tom Brady, and that finally worked last season. The Steelers switched to a man-heavy team, and that worked well in a 17-10 win. As a favorite, Tomlin is worthless. As an underdog, his teams tend to outperform expectations. This will be a classic Tomlin game. I imagine the Steelers will be motivated without Antonio Brown and come out to prove that they “still got it.”

Defensively, the biggest mismatch for Pittsburgh was covering tight ends last season. New England is without Gronk, Lance Kendricks, and Ben Watson. They also lost their starting center. The Steelers had the most sacks in the NFL last season, and have the past two seasons combined. I like their defensive line, and ability to slow the game down to cover.