NFLbets’ Picks of week 3: Looking for Rams to roll, Patriots to paste, Ravens to run up points
You can’t cry for want of good lines and odds in week 3 of this NFL seasons: NFLbets has got six good options on which to wager, and these are only our official NFLbets Picks of the Week; tomorrow, we’ll break out the true Best Bets. For now, consider spreading the weekly bankrool around a bit on these point spreads…
Baltimore Ravens +6½ at Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs will welcome QB Lamar Jackson and the Ravens to Arrowhead this Sunday for Kansas City’s first hoe game of 2019. Jackson is building an early case for MVP with 722 total yards and 7 touchdowns accounted for through two weeks.
The Chiefs are currently 6½-point favorites at home, so NFL MVP titleholder Patrick Mahomes will need to stay sharp. He passed for 443 yards and four touchdowns with a 131.2 rating in the Chiefs’ 28-10 win at Oakland. Through the first two weeks, Mahomes has four touchdown passes of at least 40 yards or more. We still think the absences of RB Damien Williams due to leg injury and WR1 Tyreek Hill to an arm leave some questions for depth against this loaded Ravens team.
Baltimore has all the tools to edge out the Chiefs roster in what could be the highest-scoring matchup of week 3. Jackson completed 24-of-37 passes for 272 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions. He converted 16 carries into an additional 120 scoreless yards on the ground. Tight end Mark Andrews caught 8-of-9 targets for 112 yards and a touchdown in the Ravens’ week 2 win. Andrews has now caught 16-of-17 targets for 220 yards and a pair of scores in two games this season.
The Ravens have gained the third-most yards on offense (1,083) through the first two regular season *ever*: Only the 1991 Buffalo Bills and 2011 New England Patriots ran up more, and both were Super Bowl teams. The Ravens defensive side and special teams also seem to hitting all the right notes and mofos on the other side of field. Take the Baltimore Ravens +7 at Kansas City.
Cincinnati Bengals -6 at Buffalo Bills
Did you know that the Bills are 2-0 SU? I’m not saying that their competition (i.e. the New York Jets and N.Y. Giants) was the greatest but going undefeated after 2 weeks is nothing to scoff at. The Bills are a good team, with a solid defense, a rapidly improving QB in Josh Allen and dependable RB crew with Devin Singletary and Frank Gore. The notable in the receiving corps has been John Brown ¬– yes, the same John Brown that was a deep threat for a number of years with Arizona and one with Baltimore.
On the other hand, the Bengals are … well they’re the just a depleted group of underachievers. Their longtime talented offensive roster with (injured) starting RB Mixon and 3 wideouts that can all play deep ball in (injured) A.J. Green, John Ross III and Tyler Boyd. Cincy even has two studs TEs in Tyler Eifert and C.J. Uzomah, yet predictably these players can’t seem to put anything together with Andy Dalton at the helm.
The Bengals are licking their wounds coming off of a 41-17 loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Coming into this game, news has emerged that the Bengals offensive line is severely undermanned, and that is bad news for Andy Dalton & Co. Give me the Bills and the points in this one, as they will move on to 3-0. Take the Buffalo Bills -6 vs Cincinnati.
Detroit Lions +6½ at Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles were so close to going 2-0 SU. Driving with little time left, QB Carson Wentz dropped a dime down the left sideline to a wide-open Nelson Agholor for what would have been a game-winning TD … if only Agholor hadn’t dropped it. The Eagles never recovered, and fell to 1-1 on the season. The Lions are coming off a huge Week 2 victory against a tough Chargers team, 13-10, showing their defensive prowess in the process. They are still undefeated through two games, albeit at 1-0-1.
The Eagles are 6-point favorites coming into this one, and while on paper that seems fair, this is not a normal week at the office for the Eagles. If you watched their SNF game, their players were dropping like flies. The damage has carried over into Week 3, as receivers Desean Jackson and Alshon Jeffery are both looking unlikely to play in this one, leaving Carson Wentz’s receiving corps looking very thin this week.
I think that will be trouble for the Eagles in this one. The Lions have a good defense, and can put up points on offense with Stafford at the helm; this line should be closer to “pick ‘em.” Take the Detroit Lions +6 at Philadelphia.
Carolina Panthers +2½ at Arizona Cardinals
The classic 0-2 vs 0-2 game. If you told me before the season that the Cardinals would be 0-2 after two weeks, I would’ve expected it, but the Panthers? Well, that’s where we are right now, and not only are the Panthers winless, Cam Newton is the biggest question mark of their season right now. He’s deemed to be uninterested and still playing hurt after two offseason shoulder surgeries, an injury that seemingly should require one year minimum to heal.
Newton is not ruled out for Week 3 yet, but it’s looking that way. That leaves the Panthers with Kyle Allen, who played well in a meaningless game in Week 17 last season, at QB. He’s no slouch, but nobody is mistaking him for Newton.
Despite the losses, Arizona has been close in both Weeks 1 and 2. They’re winless, but they’ve proven to be a tough out. With rookie QB Kyler Murray proving to be as dynamic as advertised, this team can produce fireworks in the right setting. The Cardinals are listed as 2-point favorites at home in this one, and it’s looking like they’re about to push one across the finish line. The Panthers conversely have not looked good in either game, and now just lost their QB.
New York Jets +22.5 at New England Patriots
To be honest, there’s not much to write about this one. Vegas has set this line at a historic clip, making the Patriots 22-point favorites at home against the banged-up Jets; this marks just the second time in history an NFL team has given point spreads of 19 or more points in a game; the first was in the undefeated 2007 Patriots season. I still don’t think this ’spread is high enough.
The Patriots beat the Dolphins 43-0, and while that score looks pretty, they really didn’t play that well. The offense sputtered at times, and if it wasn’t for two pick-sixes, the score would be much closer.
The Jets are a bad, plain and simple. I picked them to have a solid year, but that was before disaster struck. Sam Darnold was out for 2-3 weeks after a diagnosis of mono, and then his backup Trevor Siemien hurt his ankle or lower leg. Now they’ve got Luke Falk, as their 3rd string QB against the Patriots, who are historically motivated against the Jets. And LB C.J. Mosley is out as well.
Oh, and I almost forgot – the Jets are coming off a short week. Take the New England Patriots -22½ points (that’s right) against the New York Jets.
Los Angeles Rams -3 at Cleveland Browns
After losing 43-13 in Week 1 to the Tennessee Titans, everyone jumped off the Browns bandwagon. After beating the Jets 23-3 in Week 2, many are back aboard. The Browns are not as bad as they looked in Week 1, and are not as dominant as they looked in Week 2. Somewhere in the middle is an average team that can score no more than 25 points and will give up just as many.
For the Rams, it’s business as usual. The defending NFC champs are 2-0 coming off a blowout of the New Orleans Saints last week, although Drew Brees left early with an injury. The Rams look as good as advertised. The offense is still explosive, and the defense is flying around making plays all across the field.
The Rams are 3½-point road favorites in this primetime matchup. A fair enough line, but the Rams are simply the better team and should win by a TD. The defense is good enough to give Baker Mayfield fits, and I don’t see Odell Beckham getting off for another 86-yard touchdown like last week. Take the Los Angeles Rams -3½ at Cleveland.