Looking to improve on last week and this slate is a good one.
Cincinatti Bengals -6.5
The Bengals play their second home game of the season against the Miami Dolphins. The Bengals are coming off a last second win in Atlanta. Their offense has looked great and is ranked 5th in overall efficiency. Each of the Bengals four games has gone over the total so far this year. The Bengals defense has been below average but they should get a boost this week with the return of Vontaze Burfict. All looked great for the Dolphins before their week 4 matchup in New England. They were 3-0 and looking to really make a name for themselves atop the AFC east with a win over the struggling Patriots. What happened was much different as both teams returned to form with the Dolphins being blown out 38-7. This game made everyone forget about their fast start. When you look into their wins the Dolphins were beneficiaries of big plays and a favorable schedule. Their offense failed to move the ball consistently otherwise and now they will have more issues with injuries on both the offensive and defensive lines. The Dolphins appear to be very thin in the trenches at this point. I see them continuing to struggle here against a Bengals team that plays considerably better at home. The Bengals should have no problem winning and covering here.
Detroit Lions PK
This line has gone back and forth from Green Bay being favored to Detroit being favored. As it stands right now it is a pick em. I’ve been on Detroit since preseason. They have not had the best start at 1-3 but they have covered the spread in 3 of those games. I like that trend to continue here as they host the Packers. The Lions showed against the Patriots they match up well against pass first teams. They will look to repeat that performance against the Aaron Rodgers led Packers. Last week the Lions lost to the Cowboys as a result of giving up way too many explosive plays. They had plenty of chances to win but could not close the game out and lost by a last second field goal. They face off against a depleted Packers team who will be without Randall Cobb and have questionable tags on Geronimo Allison and Davante Adams. The Packers have been a much better team so far statistically than the Lions but they do not look that much better. They have been inconsistent so far this year and the line shows that. The line looks like a trap to me. The Packers are always a very public team and this week is no different. The fact that the bookmakers have kept the line near a pick em tells me that they are taking the Lions seriously. I’m going to continue riding the Lions. I think the Lions get back on track with a win here.
Baltimore Ravens -3
The Ravens travel to Cleveland for their second straight NFC north matchup. The Ravens are 3-1 coming off a decisive win in Pittsburgh where they were 3 point underdogs. They are 3-1 against the spread also with their Thursday night loss to the Bengals as the only game they have not covered. Their defense has been dominant and welcomes the return of all-pro caliber cornerback Jimmy Smith. The Ravens offense has been ok so far. They have not played the greatest caliber of defenses and they have not looked impressive against them. With the defense playing as well as they have the most important thing for the offense is to not turn the ball over. The only game they lost the turnover battle was their lone loss. The Browns are coming off a 45-42 loss to the Raiders in a thrilling game in Oakland. Even though they lost they Browns have shown huge improvements so far this year compared to their level of play over the last few years. They have been led by their defense which is ranked 4th in overall efficiency. Their offense has done better with Baker Mayfield at quarterback but the sample size is only against the Jets on a short week and the Raiders below average defense. This week will be the toughest test for the Browns offense as the face the 3rd overall ranked Ravens defense. I think the Ravens knock the Browns back down to earth in this game. The Ravens have covered in their last 5 games against the Browns (3-0 in Cleveland) and I look for that trend to continue here as well.
NY Jets +1
This is my best bet of the week. Full breakdown here.