NFL Week 10 Betting Guide: Odds, Props and Picks
The Pittsburgh Steelers beat their game's 51-point over/under total by themselves Thursday as they took down the Carolina Panthers 52-21 at Heinz Field.
Favored by just 3.5 points, the Steelers (now 6-2-1) overwhelmed Carolina (6-3) in one of the year's more surprising results.
The rest of the Week 10 slate looks like it will have some blowouts, although the Steelers-Panthers matchup proves that we shouldn't be surprised about unexpected outcomes.
We'll go around the NFL and offer comments on every game in this week's betting guide, which features spreads to bet, over/unders to consider, the lock of the week and more.
Money-Line Picks and Picks Against the Spread
Carolina Panthers at Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5, 51 O/U): Carolina +3.5 and +165
Arizona Cardinals at Kansas City Chiefs (-16.5, 49.5 O/U): Arizona +16.5 and Kansas City -1300
Atlanta Falcons (-6, 50.5 O/U) at Cleveland Browns: Cleveland +6 and Atlanta -250
Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (-7, 36.5 O/U): Buffalo +7 and New York -305
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears (-6.5, 44 O/U): Chicago -6.5 and -300
Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts (-3, 46.5 O/U): Indianapolis -3 and -140
New England Patriots (-6.5, 47 O/U) at Tennessee Titans: New England -6.5 and -280
New Orleans Saints (-5.5, 54 O/U) at Cincinnati Bengals: New Orleans -5.5 and -255
Washington Redskins at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3, 51 O/U): Tampa Bay -3 and -153
Los Angeles Chargers (-10, 50 O/U) at Oakland Raiders: Los Angeles -10 and -450
Miami Dolphins at Green Bay Packers (-10, 47.5 O/U): Green Bay -10 and -500
Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams (-9.5, 50 O/U): Los Angeles -9.5 and -415
Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles (-7, 43.5 O/U): Philadelphia -7 and -325
New York Giants at San Francisco 49ers (-3, 44.5 O/U): New York +3 and +161
ML Season Record: 80-53-2
ATS Season Record: 66-63-6
Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles (-7, 43.5 O/U)
The Eagles will probably win this one outright, but betting this game against the spread is a tough call.
On one hand, Philadelphia is at home and just added wideout Golden Tate from the Lions at the Oct. 30 trade deadline to boost an inconsistent offense.
On the other hand, the Cowboys defense has proved to be stout thanks to the play of cornerback Byron Jones, defensive end Demarcus Lawrence and linebackers Leighton Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith. For the year, the team has allowed just 5.1 yards per play, which is tied for third in the NFL.
However, Dallas has struggled on offense all year (26th in points per game), and not much changed last Monday even with new wideout Amari Cooper, who came over in a trade last month. The Cowboys lost 28-14 to the Titans.
But if the Dallas defense can slow down the Eagles attack, it's possible the Cowboys emerge with an ugly victory or at least cover.
Atlanta Falcons (-6, 50.5 O/U) at Cleveland Browns
The 4-4 Atlanta Falcons are surging with three straight wins, while the 2-6-1 Cleveland Browns are losers of their last four.
Atlanta is the clear favorite even on the road, but the Browns offense may give the Falcons some problems.
Cleveland offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens called his first game last Sunday after the organization relieved head coach Hue Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley of their duties.
While the Browns fell 37-21 to the 8-1 Chiefs, a few promising signs emerged. First, rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield enjoyed his highest completion rate as an NFL starter (69.1 percent). Second, the team finally utilized seldom-used running back Duke Johnson Jr., who had nine catches for 78 yards and two scores.
The Browns also had a chance to cut the Chiefs' lead to one score (with two-point conversions) late in the fourth quarter, but an interception effectively sealed the game.
The Falcons are hot, but they aren't on the Chiefs' top-tier level. Cleveland could make this a close one, especially at home.
Prop Bets You Can Take to the Bank
Anytime Touchdown Scorer: Green Bay Packers RB Aaron Jones (-120)
Per OddsShark, the Packers have an implied team total of 28.75 points for Sunday's game against the Dolphins. The Pack are home at Lambeau Field and 10-point favorites, and a comfortable multiple-score victory is possible.
That could mean more work for the ground game as the team plays conservatively down the stretch to preserve a lead. In that case, look for a solid workload for second-year running back Aaron Jones.
Jones, who is averaging 6.0 yards per carry, fought for playing time in a three-man backfield for much of the year but has since taken control with 30 touches in his past two games.
While he's only found the end zone twice, he only averaged nine touches per contest in his first month of action. With more chances, he is a strong touchdown candidate.
Total Green Bay Packers Halves Won: 2 (+115)
The Packers look like they have a significant edge in this matchup.
First, they're playing a Dolphins team that is just 1-3 on the road, with those three losses by 10 or more points.
Second, Miami has largely struggled after a 3-0 start, going just 2-4 since then. A 31-28 overtime win against the Bears was undoubtedly impressive, but the Dolphins' four losses were by an average of 17.75 points. Miami also lost seven of those eight halves.
Green Bay hasn't enjoyed a successful season at 3-4-1, but it has endured one of the league's toughest schedules with five games against teams with five or more wins. Like the Dolphins, they also have extreme home/road splits, with a 3-0-1 home record and a 0-4 road mark.
Look for Jones and the Packers defense to lead the way in a comfortable victory.
Spreads to Bet
Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts (-3)
The Jaguars have lost four straight games by a combined score of 114-46. They benched starting quarterback Blake Bortles midway through the third loss in that stretch (a 20-7 defeat to the Houston Texans) before reinserting him as the starter the following week.
The running game (ranked 24th in yards per game) has been inconsistent sans starter Leonard Fournette, as has the pass-catching crew. The defense is still stout for the most part, although the Jags are just 25th in sacks (19) after ranking second in that statistic a year ago.
Fournette is practicing in full and should be back from his hamstring injury for Sunday, but the Colts are winners of two straight and have returned a ton of key players off the injury report, most notably left tackle Anthony Castonzo, wideout T.Y. Hilton and tight end Jack Doyle. The Colts clearly win the momentum battle, and given that they are at home, pick them to cover.
New Orleans Saints (-5.5) at Cincinnati Bengals
Betting the Bengals when superstar wide receiver A.J. Green is out with a foot injury is a tough proposition. They don't have much pass-catching depth behind him, as wideout Tyler Boyd is the only active player with 20 or more catches on the year.
Cincinnati will have to rely on running backs Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard to help move the ball down the field, but the vertical passing attack takes a big hit sans Green (45 catches, 687 yards, six touchdowns).
While the Saints defense isn't imposing, the offense most certainly is, which may force the Bengals to attempt to win a shootout. That wasn't out of the realm of possibility with Green in the mix, but the chances are more remote without him.
Washington Redskins at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (EVEN to Tampa Bay -3)
Washington is in the midst of a bizarre, head-scratching season. Despite a 5-3 record, the team has been outscored 172-160 because their three losses have been by a combined 60 points. They have a win against the 6-3 Panthers, but they also just lost to a 4-4 Falcons team at home 38-14.
Bettors may be jumping off the bandwagon now. The spread for Washington's game with Tampa Bay has jumped by a field goal, with the home side the clear favorite.
The Bucs have problems of their own, as they allow the most points in the league (34.4 per game). But the offense is explosive and can be overwhelming at times. That could be an issue for a Skins defense reeling after allowing 38 to Atlanta.
Couple all this with the fact that Washington lost guards Brandon Scherff and Shawn Lauvao and wideout Paul Richardson Jr. to injured reserve after the Falcons game, and you have a potential blowout.
Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (New York -9 to -7 and 37 O/U to 36.5 O/U)
In a season in which teams are averaging a historical league high of 24.1 points per game, it speaks volumes that the over/under total of 37 dropped for the Bills-Jets matchup.
Clearly, bettors have no faith in either of these offenses, and it's hard to blame them. The Bills are averaging a league-low 10.7 points per game, while the Jets have averaged just 11.0 in their past three contests.
The Jets were initially favored by nine points, although that has been cut to seven. If there's any sort of optimism on the Bills side, it's that rookie quarterback Josh Allen (elbow) and first-year linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (concussion) have put in limited practices this week.
Both are questionable for Sunday, but having them back will only help as Buffalo looks to pull off an upset at MetLife Stadium.
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears: Under 44 Points
The Lions have been dormant on offense over the past two weeks.
First, they scored just 14 points at home to the Seahawks. Then, after trading No. 1 wideout Golden Tate to the Eagles, the team hung just nine points in a 24-9 defeat to the Vikings. Tate may not have been able to help much in that one, though, as quarterback Matthew Stafford took 10 sacks.
Now Detroit is facing arguably its toughest offensive test all season against the Bears, who have allowed the fourth-fewest points in the league (19.1 per game).
Furthermore, Chicago is likely returning edge-rusher Khalil Mack to the mix after the ex-Oakland Raider sat two games with an ankle injury (and played hurt on it in two others).
Mack had five sacks in his first four games before suffering the injury in Week 6, so if he's back to his old self, Stafford could be getting hit often for the second straight week. Hence, the under seems like a safe call.
New England Patriots at Tennessee Titans: Over 47 Points
Per football analyst Warren Sharp of Sharp Football Stats, the Titans have benefitted from the NFL's second-easiest strength of schedule in terms of offensive efficiency.
Five of the teams the Titans have faced rank 21st or worse, and seven of the eight are outside the top 12.
The Chargers at No. 3 are the lone member inside the top 12, but the Titans faced the Bolts sans running back Melvin Gordon, who has 868 yards from scrimmage and 10 touchdowns in just seven games.
Tennessee does allow the fewest points per game (17.6), but some defensive regression may be on the way. Of note, the Patriots are rolling into town as the league's fifth-highest scoring team (30 points per game). They are winners of six straight and have averaged 35.5 points per game during the streak.
This looks like a game in which the New England offense can explode, helping the total go well over 47 points.
Value Bet: New York Giants +161 over San Francisco 49ers
It's not easy to feel comfortable about betting a 1-7 team to win a game outright, but the Giants have a few things going in their favor against the 49ers.
First, running back Saquon Barkley has the capability to take over this contest and will his team to victory. Per Football Outsiders, the 49ers rank just 19th in run-defense DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average). They also allow an above-average passing-yardage mark to running backs (48.5). A strong dual threat, Barkley has 519 rushing yards and 497 receiving yards on the year.
Second, wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. could be seeing time against cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon, who was benched earlier this year because of on-field struggles. Beckham has the clear edge in this matchup, and he's managed to catch 61 passes for 785 yards and two touchdowns despite his team's offensive struggles.
The talents of Barkley and Beckham could be too much for an opposing defense to overcome, although the 49ers may benefit from some magic from second-year quarterback Nick Mullens after he tossed three touchdowns in his pro debut against the Raiders in Week 9.
Still, the Giants at +161 (bet $100 to win $161) may offer the best money-line value of the week.
Arizona Cardinals at Kansas City Chiefs (-1300)
Betting $1,300 to win $100 is never an enviable task, even if the proposition seems like a near-lock.
That seems like the case for the Chiefs, who have scored the most points per game in the NFL.
Meanwhile, the 2-6 Cardinals are playing out the string and adjusting to new offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich, who took over for Mike McCoy after the organization relieved him of his duties after seven games.
The team seems to have little to no shot of hanging with the K.C. offense. The Cardinals have scored just 13.8 points per game compared to the Chiefs' 36.3.
That being said, don't be surprised if the Arizona defense fares relatively well. Cornerback Patrick Peterson is one of the best at his position, edge-rusher Chandler Jones has 6.5 sacks and the safety duo of Budda Baker and Antoine Bethea form a tackling machine (140 combined stops).
Look for the Chiefs to win this one outright, but the Cardinals could make this interesting.
Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams (-415)
This bet simply isn't worth the price. Betting $415 to win just $100 is a tough sell, especially in a game in which the underdog could take advantage of the matchup to win outright.
The Seahawks hung tough with the Rams the last time these teams met in Week 5, losing just 33-31. The Seattle ground game gave L.A. problems, with the team rushing for 190 yards on just 32 carries. The Rams are vulnerable against opposing run defenses and allow 4.7 yards per carry (tied for the eighth-most in the league).
Running back Chris Carson may not play in this one (he's been out all week with a hip injury), but Seattle still has Mike Davis, who is averaging 4.3 yards per carry and has three rushing touchdowns.
The Rams are at home this time, which makes life a bit more difficult for the Seahawks. However, it's not implausible to believe an upset could happen.
Lock of the Week: Los Angeles Chargers (-10) at Oakland Raiders
If the Raiders just lost by 31 points to a 49ers team that was 1-7 entering the game, what will happen against the 6-2 Los Angeles Chargers, who have won their last five?
The Bolts soundly beat the Raiders 26-10 when these teams last met in Week 5.
The Silver and Black had running back Marshawn Lynch, wideout Amari Cooper and edge-rusher Bruce Irvin then.
Now, Lynch is on injured reserve (groin injury), Cooper is a Cowboy (trade) and Irvin is a Falcon (release).
Giving 10 points on the road is never ideal, but the Silver and Black clearly have no intentions on winning as they look to build toward the future.
Meanwhile, the Chargers can't afford to have a letdown game as they try to stay within shouting distance of the 8-1 Chiefs for the AFC West title.
Bet the Bolts minus the points with confidence.