*This is the transcript of our Handicapping group wager chat for this particular game. Taking it as it is, so forgive any typos, etc. It's just casual opinions shared. Also, we may veer way off topic but that's half the fun of it.
FFM Computer: 47-30, B5: 17-8, Best Bet 3-2
Skolman: 44-33; Blazing 5: 16-9; Best Bet: 3-2
Savage: 43-34; Blazing 5: 13-12; Best Bet: 2-3
Rabbitt: 40-37; Blazing 5: 14-11; Best Bet: 3-2
RC: 39-38 Blazing 5: 15-10; Best Bet: 1-4
Katz: 36-41; Blazing 5: 9-16; Best Bet: 1-4
Colin: 15-10 on his B5
Pit +4.5 over KC
I hate to admit how good of a team KC is. They are really good. However I think the Steelers defense is amazing. Assuming Ben doesn't rocket 5 balls to the other team this time I think they can stay within a field goal.
Cle +10 over Houston
Really? I get 10 points over this team? I don't care how bad the browns are. I think they can stay within 10 of Houston. Eventually Watson is turning back into a pumpkin.
GB -3 over Min
Green bay is rolling. I refuse to take Case Keenum in the battle of A-rod vs. Case-K.
Chi +6.5 over Baltimore
If it wasn't for penalties and really bad play calling, we would have a different story of Mitch's first start. Baltimore is a bit of a fraud in my eyes still. This should be fun.
Den-11.5 over NYG
You tell me how the Giants score points in this game, and I won't bet the broncos.
PIT +4.5 best bet: The Steelers just dropped a home game to the Jaguars in a game that wasn’t close. The Chiefs just steamrolled the upstart Texans on the road. Big Ben is on his last legs. The Chiefs are the best team in the NFL. These are the narratives yet this line is only 4.5? Steelers win outright.
DEN -11.5. I really have no idea how the Giants are going to score any points. Like I legitimately expect them to not score.
TB -2.5. The Bucs are coming off a loss. The Cardinals just traded for Adrian Peterson (thus making their team worse). Tampa gets it done.
SF +10.0. This is too many points. The Redskins are going to win this game…I think. It would not totally shock me if the 49ers won, which is why I’m more than willing to take the points. Carlos Hyde is healthy and will dominate this backfield because he is the best player on the team. Kyle Shanahan is lying through his teeth with this hot hand nonsense. The Redskins win it late by single digits.
NE -9.5. This was a really hard week to find five games I was truly confident in. I’m going with the Patriots because it’s about time for Brady to lay a number on someone – why not the Jets, who despite their 3-2 record are amongst the worst teams in the league?
CLE at HOU -10.0
CLE +10 - Addition by subtraction for Cleveland with the human turnover machine replaced at QB. Just actual subtraction with the unfortunate injuries to the Houston defense last week.
NE at NYJ +9.5
NYJ +9.5 - The worst statistical defense in the league on the road in a matchup where the little brother usually keeps it close at home. Folk missing 3 FGs doesn't have me convinced the Pats have solved their issues.
LAR at JAX -2.5
LAR +2.5 - I think this is going to be a popular pick so let's all win together. I'm counting on you Blake Bortles.
PIT at KC -4.5
PIT +4.5 - I just have to be here. I think we get max effort from the Steelers after the embarrassment last week. I wonder how much the Chiefs WR injuries are going to impact the running game, (as blockers) Conley in particular. KC has playoff revenge but these teams slugged it out in that playoff game so I feel good +4.5.
NYG at DEN -11.5 **Best Bet**
Den -11.5 - I've been knocked out of survivor 2x already but I'm undefeated picking Denver games so let's keep that rolling. The thing I heard this week that I most disagree with was "this game just screams back door cover". I wish the person would have explained why. Anything can happen but I think this is the biggest mismatch of the entire season and it's not even the biggest spread of the week. I've heard a lot of chatter about HAVING to take the Giants at some point...13 being the number that is generally agreed upon. I think it's possible that you just can't get the line high enough to account for the cluster injuries at WR. I feel like the Giants will never be worse than this week. At least next week the WRs will have played and watched tape and talked to Eli about a real game. Also, Denver is really good.
Raiders -2.5 (best bet) - This feels like cheating because reports are that Carr is likely to start. I haven't actually seen this line anywhere, but I'd be shocked if the Raiders were less than -3.5 point favorites with Carr starting. The Chargers needed an OBJ broken leg to get their first win, so I think the Raiders can beat them even if EJ Manuel is the starter.
Jaguars -2.5 - This is a bad matchup for the Rams. I don't think the Rams D will be able to stop the run and I'm not ready to believe that Jared Goff can limit mistakes against an elite defense.
Bucs -2.5 - The Cards are a joke of a franchise and I'm starting to see signs of quitting on defense. What could be more demoralizing to them than to get down early to a team they crushed last season? The Bucs biggest weakness has been their pass rush (and their kicker) but the Cardinals can't block anybody.
Saints -5 - This line is absolutely begging you to take Detroit. It has me thinking back to last week when Stafford was limping around after getting beat up by Carolina. I suspect he's more hurt than people realize. Saints off a bye after 2 solid defensive pormances, I think they win by 10.
Broncos -11.5 - I don't like many games this week so I'm taking the squarest play on the board, hoping the Giants' downward spiral continues.
PIT +4.5 over KC
The Computer is absolutely sure the Steelers are going to beat the Chiefs here. The Steelers are being punished for losing a game to a very good Jacksonville team that people in football STILL don’t understand how good they are -- they think they're 'the Jags' (haha). So, every time a team loses to them they get ripped.
The Steelers have a better O-Line, defense, RB, WR and in big games – a better QB. The Steelers have to be ready to kill someone after the past two weeks. The very good, but lucky/overrated Chiefs are in the wrong place at the wrong time missing two starting OLs and a WR.
CLE +10.0 over HOU
The Computer swears this could be the Browns first win. A full Kevin Hogan start is a totally different narrative for this team. You can't judge them by previous games with Kizer and Kessler. This is a much better team with Hogan…and I'll bet the players know it/can feel it too.
Think about it – the Browns have a better O-Line, D-Line, and their own mobile QB to confuse the defense. Hue Jackson = losses, so I'm hard-pressed to see a win but definitely within 10.0.
CHI +6.5 over BAL
The Bears are equal/better at every position to the Ravens except kicker. Worse case – the Ravens shouldn’t be 6+ point favorites to any team. The Computer calls for the road dog upset by the Bears but the points are a sweet extra as well.
LAC +2.5 over JAC
People get too high and/or low based off of splashy things that happened last week…so now the Jags have a little respect among the public. The Rams have no respect. The only team in football that football doesn't get more than the Jags is how great the Rams are. The Computer is taking the better team for the win…and points for a sweetener.
NO -5.0 over DET
This line seems high to me, but The Computer smelled this as a beat down right away. The Computer has great respect for two teams that I can't figure…the Saints and the Chargers. The Computer sees the Lions O-Line as too risky whereas the Saints have one of the better O-Lines in the NFL so far…and may get its best OL back this week (Armstead). The Saints are the sleeping dog of the NFC…great, underreported on OL and an emerging defense people are used to making fun of.
Getting rid of Adrian Peterson is another reason to love NO here – no wasted touches going to him.
RC: PIT, LAR, CLE, CHI, DEN
COLIN: LAR, CHI, NO CAR, NE
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