I must say, I was very happy with how I did in my first week of betting picks for the National Football League (NFL). I went 4-1 overall, and the game I predicted incorrectly I knew I made the wrong decision at halftime. I thought picking the Carolina Panther’s as the winner was smart because the Buccaneers were tired and on an emotional losing streak. I barely won my prediction about the Bears and I knew it was going to be close, but I trusted the Bears’ defense. In the Seattle game, I underestimated Deshaun Watson’s maturity on the big stage. The Texans lost the game, but they put up 38 points against Seahawks in Seattle.
One trend you may begin to see in my predictions is that I like to take points and choose the underdog because NFL games are usually closer than many people may think. This is especially true for divisional games, which are usually very gritty and tough and leads to high emotions on both sides. The more composed football team usually wins these types of games. We saw this in the Carolina game last week in their matchup against the Buccaneers, which was a tight game in which Carolina made fewer mistakes, which lead them to victory.
Here are my Top NFL betting picks for week nine!
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+7) at New Orleans Saints: I really like the Bucs finishing within seven points against New Orleans on Sunday. I know Tampa Bay has lost four straight games and are dealing with a lot of injuries, especially defensively in the secondary. I also know that the Saints have dominated the recent matchups between these two teams. However, these divisional games are always very close competitive football games. The last six games these two teams have played against each other, five out six times the game was decided by seven or fewer points. I also think New Orleans is receiving a little too much credit. They have won five straight games and their defense has improved, but the Saints are still giving up too many rushing yards. I like the Saints to win this game but the Bucs will cover. Buccaneers 26, Saints 31
- Atlanta Falcons (+1) at Carolina Panthers: This is another tough, gritty NFC South divisional game. Again, I like the road team against the spread in this matchup. Atlanta has regressed a little bit from last year, but I liked how they bounced back last week against the Jets after losing the Super Bowl rematch against the Patriots two weeks ago. They have struggled more offensively, with quarterback Matt Ryan and wide receiver Julio Jones only hooking up for one touchdown this year. However, I think they will score enough points on Sunday. The Panthers, already a weak offensive team, just traded away their top wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin. Quarterback Cam Newton has had trouble throwing the ball to people outside of Benjamin, so it will be interesting to see how he responds. I think Atlanta wins outright on the road. Falcons 19, Panthers 17
- Los Angeles Rams (-3.5) at New York Giants: This is my most confident pick of the week. I am picking the Rams to win by at least four against the Giants on Sunday. The Giants haven’t won at home all year and are a 1-6 football team. The Rams are 5-2 and are 3-0 on the road this year. The Rams are coming off a bye, which is important because they had an extra week to prepare. New York Giants’ star cornerback Janoris Jenkins is out for this game. The Rams are second in the league scoring 30.3 points per game. I think this game is more important to the Rams and they cover on the road. Rams 28, Giants 23
- Oakland Raiders at Miami Dolphins (+3): I’m taking the Dolphins to cover the spread at home against the Raiders for Sunday Night Football. I always value teams that are coming into a game off an embarrassing national TV loss. The Dolphins were dominated at Baltimore 40-0 on Thursday night in week eight. It’s a night game but the Raiders, a west coast team, are traveling east. The Raiders defense has been bad this year and on the road, they are giving up 24.6 points per game. In the Dolphins game two weeks ago, when they had a healthy Jay Cutler, they ran the ball for 138 yards. With quarterback Jay Cutler coming back from injury this week, I like the Dolphins to cover the spread and get the win. Raiders 27, Dolphins 30
- Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (+2.5): I am confidently taking the Green Bay Packers to win outright at home against the Lions on Monday Night Football. The Lions haven’t won at Lambeau field since 1991. Even though the Pack are without future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers, Brett Hundley was at least better in his game against the Saints. Also, the Packers are coming off a bye, meaning they’ve had an extra week to prepare for Detroit. More importantly though, the extra week gives backup Brett Hundley more time to become more comfortable with the offense. I also like that the Lions defense only has thirteen sacks on the year, meaning Hundley should have time to operate on a secondary that allows 12.4 yards a pass. I like the Packers to continue their winning streak at home against the Lions. Lions 23, Packers 27