NFL Picks Week 8: Breaking Down the Games to Bet Against the Spread
Last week's against the spread record: 5-1
Overall against the spread record: 35-17 (67 percent)
To be completely honest with you, I originally only picked five games last week.
But I told myself five wasn't enough and that I needed to add one more.
Turns out the one I added was the Arizona-Seattle game—the only loss of the week for me.
This week, I am picking more games than I ever have simply because Vegas has the home team winning every single game of the week.
With 13 games this Sunday, I assure you, the home team is not going to win every single one.
In fact, I'm going with more visiting teams to win this week.
With a total of nine picks against the spread, here's what Vegas has for this weekend's game lines.
Denver vs. San Francisco (at London): San Francisco -1
Jacksonville at Dallas: Dallas -6.5
Washington at Detroit: Detroit -2.5
Green Bay at NY Jets: NY Jets -6
Carolina at St. Louis: St. Louis -3
Miami at Cincinnati: Cincinnati -2
Buffalo at Kansas City: Kansas City -7.5
Tennessee at San Diego: San Diego -3.5
Tampa Bay at Arizona: Arizona -3
Seattle at Oakland: Oakland -2.5
Minnesota at New England: New England -6.5
Pittsburgh at New Orleans: New Orleans -1
Houston at Indianapolis: Indianapolis -5.5
Denver +1 Vs. San Francisco (At London)
San Francisco is about to start Troy Smith with Alex Smith injured.
I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing.
What I do know is the 49ers have proved they can't win on their own home field, or any American field.
So I'm not sure what makes Vegas think they can pull it off in London.
Kyle Orton is one of the top passers in the league, and despite the ugly loss the Broncos just suffered to Oakland, they are still healthier, more talented and simply the better team over these 49ers.
I honestly expect Denver to win this game straight up.
Jacksonville +6.5 at Dallas
Tony Romo is out, which might be good news for the Cowboys.
Simply put, I am not a believer that Romo can truly lead this Cowboys team to consistent wins.
But I'm not a believer in Jon Kitna either.
Jacksonville has been streaky as of late, and with this game being in Dallas, I don't know if I can see Jacksonville actually winning.
Dallas still has a lot of good talent on its team, so I would expect them to win.
But most people also expected them to be better than 1-5, so be on the lookout for Jacksonville to at least cover this game.
Washington +2.5 at Detroit
You know, I actually understand this one.
The Redskins have a bad habit of losing to teams like Detroit despite beating teams like Green Bay.
Need I remind Redskin fans of the St. Louis game?
I don't think so.
In fact, that was the one big upset of the season for the 'Skins, and I have put it in the past.
Matt Stafford is coming back this week, and the Lions have shown they can definitely put up some points, but they are still a season or two away from being where they need to be for me to pick them in this game.
I'm going with Washington to win this game straight up, but if you are a little skeptical you could still go with the Redskins to cover.
Green Bay +6 at NY Jets
This should honestly be one of the best games of the weekend.
Aaron Rodgers vs. the secondary of the Jets.
I'm really looking forward to it.
This was a Super Bowl prediction for many people before the season started, and it could still end up that way.
Still, the spread on this one was just too much to pass up picking, so I've gotta take it.
New York may win this one, but Aaron Rodgers is too competitive to not keep it within six.
Green Bay to cover at least.
Miami +2 at Cincinnati
Yet again, Cincinnati is the favorite to win.
Yet again, they will probably lose.
The tandem of Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco is turning out to be not half bad.
The only problem is, that's the only thing they've got going for them.
Miami is able to play defense, run the ball successfully and take advantage of its stud receiver Brandon Marshall with a pretty good passing game.
Cincy is definitely talented enough to pull off the much-needed win at home.
But Miami is definitely capable of upsetting the Bengals on the road as well.
Tennessee +3.5 at San Diego
Did anyone else see what I saw last week with the Tennessee Titans?
They came back and beat the Eagles in rather decisive fashion.
Now, I doubt Kenny Britt will have the same kind of day he had last week, but if Tennessee can beat Dallas, Philadelphia and the New York Giants, I don't see why they can't beat the Chargers in San Diego.
Remember, had Tennessee beaten San Diego last year, they might have made the playoffs after starting the season 0-6.
The Titans franchise has not had a win over the Chargers since 1992, but you can bet they want to win this one more than ever.
With San Diego struggling to find its way this season, expect Tennessee to cover this game or possibly win straight up.
Tampa Bay +3 at Arizona
Arizona can't figure out who its quarterback is.
As I said last week, I like Max Hall and was a huge fan of his as a college player at BYU.
Alas, no matter who is playing quarterback for Arizona, the Cardinals have more problems to worry about.
Somehow, the Buccaneers are 4-2 and are tied for the lead in the NFC South.
I'm not biting that they are actually going to win that division, but they are still better than the Cardinals right now.
If Tampa doesn't win this game, I will be surprised, but they should still definitely cover the three-point spread.
Minnesota +6.5 at New England
I know Minnesota is having trouble right now.
And I agree, they are nowhere near what they were last season.
Namely Brett Favre.
The Patriots are 5-1, and I actually called their only loss back in Week 2 against the Jets.
I'm not exactly calling this as a loss though.
I'm calling this as an "against the spread" pick.
New England may still win this game, but whether Brett Favre or Tarvaris Jackson is playing quarterback, the Vikings are still capable of upsetting the Pats, or at least covering the spread.
Pittsburgh +1 at New Orleans
I understand the Saints are the defending Super Bowl champions.
But this Steelers team has won more Super Bowls in the last five seasons than the Saints have in their entire existence.
Big Ben Roethlisberger is back and looks as good as ever, and the Steelers defense looks outright nasty.
When Pittsburgh has gone 5-1 with their only loss to a respectable Ravens team and the Saints are 4-3 with losses to Arizona and Cleveland, I don't care if it's in New Orleans or not—Pittsburgh should be the favorite in this game.
With only a one-point line, I guess the only real way to bet against the spread is to take the Steelers to win straight up.
I'm perfectly fine with that.