Full disclosure: Yet another busy week of inpatient medicine for me, so we are going with a two-minute drill again this week. Tier titles this week an homage to things you might here during a two-minute drill. Also, I know the season record isn’t great, but the breakthrough is coming…I think.
Tier 1: Hot Route (Season Record: 6-5-1)
Chargers -2.5 over Browns
Titans -2.5 over Commanders
Rams -5.5 over Cowboys
“Hot route” signifies you think you’ve got a receiver open pre-snap for a big play. These bets should be the big plays for the week. The Chargers have proven their bonafides and Justin Herbert seems healthy. The Titans have rebounded from the blowout loss to the Bills, and yet again, I refuse to bet on the Commanders. Los Angeles has plenty of problems, but so do the Cowboys. I think the Rams will be able to take away the run and as long as Micah Parsons doesn’t just wreck the game entirely, Los Angeles can do enough to cover.
Tier 2: Omaha (Season Record: 3-9)
Dolphins -3 over Jets
Eagles -5.5 over Cardinals
Chiefs -7.5 over Raiders
Peyton Manning shoutout time! We all know Peyton Manning loved to shout “Omaha” pre-snap and in the two-minute drill he was especially fond of his favorite Nebraska city. Likewise, I’m also fond of these picks. The Jets are awful, despite beating the Steelers last week, and I think the Dolphins will be better with a week to prepare with Teddy Bridgewater under center. Miami’s defense is still solid. Arizona and Las Vegas aren’t particularly good teams. Kansas City is definitely good, and I think Philadelphia is too.
Tier 3: Red 7 (Season Record: 6-9)
Lions +3.5 over Patriots
Colts +3.5 over Broncos
Jaguars -7 over Texans
Ravens -3 over Bengals
If we’re shouting out Peyton Manning, we gotta give it up for the star of Wedding Crashers, Jeremy Gray, too. He was first team all-state and can put the ball wherever he wants. I don’t trust the Patriots or Broncos still. The Jaguars seem on the verge of a breakthrough. Baltimore is strong and the Bengals are still trying to find some consistency.
Tier 4: Nascar (Season Record: 5-7)
Bills -14 over Steelers
Saints -5.5 over Seahawks
Falcons +9 over Buccaneers
Popularly, team’s will refer to their no-huddle offense as “Nascar”. Not very original, but it is an easy concept to grasp. Pittsburgh finally turned the car keys over to Kenny Pickett last Sunday, which is the right call. Buffalo is strong though and I don’t think the Steelers defense will be able to slow Josh Allen down. Honestly, I don’t much of what to make of the Saints or the Seahawks, but I think Seattle is more likely to put up a dud than New Orleans. Tampa Bay still has problems on offense, but they looked much better with Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Julio Jones back last week. They still aren’t trustworthy with a big spread, even against Atlanta.
Tier 5: Clock It (Season Record: 8-4)
Giants +7.5 over Packers
Bears +7 over Vikings
Panthers +6.5 over 49ers
If you are having to yell to clock the ball, clearly things aren’t going great. Likewise, I would likely stay away from these games, but if you’re Jonesing here’s my rationale. Also, I have my best record in this tier so maybe you should bet these and fade the rest. (Insert shrug emoji). Minnesota and Green Bay have a habit of letting teams hang around. Additionally, London games usually end up being close and weird. The Niners have been one of the more enigmatic teams to gamble on this season. Every time I give them a ringing endorsement, they lose. Every time I try to fade them, they kick me in the teeth. This week seems like a game they should absolutely win by the touchdown. In the spirit of trying to learn from my mistakes, let’s watch them eke out a three-point win against a non-playoff team this week.
Season Record: 28-35-1
Cover Photo Courtesy of Bryan M. Bennett/Getty Images