Week 6 was a mixed bag as I did well (in my mind) straight up and confidence index, but suffered Against the Spread with an unsavory 6-8-1 record. There were a couple of games I wish I could have had back in hindsight (namely Rams with the TD on the road, and the Titans at home giving 8 and I thought it read 3, but it is what it is).
Survivor Pool Pick of the Week: Denver Broncos
This is a tougher week for picking survivor picks, and I don’t have a list of teams that I have been picking where I am actually still alive (as I technically lost in week 5). That said, going gets tough now, and the Patriots and Rams and Chiefs all scream out as cleaner options to select (and some will probably call me crazy for presuming the Pats are a lock on the road, but my hype train continues as NE is just getting started as they lay claim to yet another AFC East title before Thanksgiving). BUT, I will save the Patriots for now, and instead opt for the Broncos against a rookie for the second time in 3 weeks. It is either them or the Rams, and the Rams are undefeated, so I am a little more reluctant to go with that gimme in this spot (as contradictory as that may seem, considering I am going with them higher in confidence and a ludicrous 11 points on the road). I think the Cardinals are in disarray and this is not the week that Rosen figures it out.
#BackToReality: the longest reigning NFL Empire (the Patriots) is HOT
I will open this one with credit and kudos to the Chiefs. Mahomes shook off some early struggles and led the team back from distance to make this an exciting game and lend to the belief that the Chiefs are a legit SB contender out of the AFC. Marching into New England and coming back as opposed to just standing down and taking the beating they were afflicted with in the first half would not have surprised me. But that second half by Mahomes showed what he is made of, and also showed a Patriots D with some big holes. Let us remember that Bortles picked them apart early on, so I am not entirely surprised. But they can score points too. Tons of them, in bunches. I predicted a string of wins, and they are coming. They won’t stop. Next stop will yield a victory in my backyard as they visit the Windy City to stomp on another young and developing QB. Trubisky is not Mahomes, and that will be the difference here. Patriots continue their roll!
#TimeToTestTheRookie: I nailed my Week 6 predictions for the rookie QBs (Darnold victory and Rosen covering a spread). This week is going to be a tough one for the now 3-3 Darnold as he draws the Vikings at home. I was very much on the Viking bandwagon at the start of the season, but Cook is struggling to stay on the field and the Vikings have not looked like the world beaters they could be (maybe those expectations were simply too much or over the top even). Can Darnold pull the upset at home and extend this mini-win streak the Jets are enjoying at home? I hate to say this, but I have to go no. Jets secondary is banged up and they just gave up 34 points to the Colts. The optimists will speak to key stops and holding on to the game. I am stuck on giving up 34 points, period. And the Vikings can actually play some D, unlike those Colts. They may throw some exotic schemes at Darnold to boot. I think this is a tight game and can see a push ATS, but I will go with a Viking victory here and another set of lessons for Darnold to learn in the hard knocks road to greatness as the leader of Gang Green.
#Don’tCallItAnUpset: The Ravens are favored ATS in this one, and my question is HOW? If that makes this game an upset, then so be it, but I see the Saints taking this one. So I will happily take a Saints team that is heating up and getting healthy. A bye week to re-acclimate to their run tandem of Ingram and Kamara, along with the continued brilliance of Drew Brees – mix that with a highly inconsistent Ravens squad and I see the pieces in place for another Saints victory.
#UndefeatedWatch: Down to 1 as I so boldly predicted last week. AND, they shall remain undefeated at close of the day Sunday. CJ Beathard has fared far more acceptably thus far in the starter role, but they are just lacking the guns to beat the Rams. The stats and history recent suggest a 49er opportunity here, and perhaps there is (I am struggling with the 11 point spread here). The Rams decided to let the Broncos cover on Sunday, but can the Niners score on the Rams the way the Broncos managed to in comeback mode? This is where I think not. Rams win, and I will take them to cover the ugly 11.
BYE WEEK: Green Bay Packers, Oakland Raiders, Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks
SU = Straight Up, SU-C = Confidence Index (Straight Up), ATS = Against the Spread
|Atul (SU)||Atul (SU-C)||Atul (ATS)|
|Denver Broncos (2-4) at Arizona Cardinals (1-5)||Broncos||10||Broncos (-1.5)|
|Tennessee Titans (3-3) vs. San Diego Chargers (4-2)||Chargers||11||Chargers (-6.5)|
|New England Patriots (4-2) at Chicago Bears (3-2)||Patriots||13||Patriots (-3)|
|Buffalo Bills (2-4) at Indianapolis Colts (1-5)||Colts||4||Colts (-6.5)|
|Detroit Lions (2-3) at Miami Dolphins (4-2)||Lions||3||Lions (PK)|
|Minnesota Vikings (3-2-1) at New York Jets (3-3)||Vikings||2||Vikings (-3)|
|Carolina Panthers (3-2) at Philadelphia Eagles (3-3)||Eagles||5||Panthers (+3.5)|
|Cleveland Browns (2-3-1) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3)||Buccaneers||7||Buccaneers (-3)|
|Houston Texans (3-3) at Jacksonville Jaguars (3-3)||Jaguars||1||Jaguars (-4.5)|
|New Orleans Saints (4-1) at Baltimore Ravens (4-2)||Saints||9||Saints (+2.5)|
|Los Angeles Rams (6-0) at San Francisco 49ers (1-4)||Rams||14||Rams (-11)|
|Dallas Cowboys (3-3) at Washington Redskins (3-2)||Redskins||8||Redskins (-2.5)|
|Cincinnati Bengals (4-2) at Kansas Chiefs (5-1)||Chiefs||12||Chiefs (-6)|
|New York Giants (1-5) at Atlanta Falcons (2-4)||Falcons||6||Falcons (-3.5)|