Five picks against the NFL spread, that’s what we do here. Keeping with the shape of the season, we’ll be primarily on underdogs. When in doubt, friends, take the points.
Cowboys +2.5 at Chiefs
Kansas City finally played a game it could be proud of. Dallas has just one missed step on its entire resume. The Pokes have more offensive weapons, a better offensive line, and a more disruptive defense. Last call to get Dak Prescott at a reasonable MVP price.
Lions +11.5 at Browns
Cleveland would be better off starting a healthy Case Keenum over a broken Baker Mayfield. Keenum has experience with Kevin Stefanski, and Keenum was fine when asked to start earlier this year. Jared Goff is also up in the air, but say this for the Lions, they play hard, and they haven’t quit on Dan Campbell. That matters.
Colts +7 at Bills
Spinning the Carson Wentz wheel isn’t for the squeamish, but Indy nonetheless grades as a top-10 DVOA team. Starting with a touchdown feels generous.
Steelers +6.5 at Chargers
I rarely trust Pittsburgh as a favorite — this team loves to play down to the level of competition — but I’ll happily back the Steelers when they’re backed into a corner. Mike Tomlin knows this spot well. Justin Herbert doesn’t seem to trust his offensive line of late; he can’t wait to get the ball out of his hands. It’s rendered Mike Williams invisible for about a month.
Football Team +3.5 at Panthers
Cam Newton played nine nifty snaps and all the world is in a tizzy. I remember the three lousy months of football he ended last year with. I need a prove-it game, not a prove-it nine-snap sample. On general principle, give me the Football Team.