Week 9 was a rough one for underdogs as they went just 5-8 against the spread. On the bright side, for those who like to lay money on our canine companions, you had a solid upset on Monday night with the Tennessee Titans dominating the Dallas Cowboys, that at least gave the rest of us a reason to watch the game.
Once again I have perused the upcoming schedule for Week 10 and picked out the best NFL underdog picks for Week 10.
New Orleans Saints at Cincinnati Bengals (+5.5, O/U: 53.5)
Hear me out on this one. I know on paper the Saints (7-1) are an obvious potential Super Bowl team and the Bengals (5-3) are, at best, an AFC Wild Card. But this game is interesting because it’s in Cincinnati. It should be in the low-40s temperature-wise (at best) and New Orleans has never traveled well and they certainly seem to have trouble playing outside, especially in the second half of the season.
Cincinnati #Bengals WR AJ Green’s absence due to a foot injury opens up 35% of the team’s inside-the-ten targets, 40% of air yards, and 50% of their end zone targets. Should see a boost in targets for all Bengals pass catchers including Boyd, Ross, Uzomah and Mixon.
— NFL Warehouse (@NflWarehouse) November 7, 2018
Now, with the way the Saints can run the ball, they may be able to mitigate a lot of that, but this Bengals team can put up points. While New Orleans is stout against the run, they can certainly be passed on and have very little pass rush to speak of. The Saints could win this game, and be happy to do so, something like 33-28 and not cover -5.5. Frankly, sitting here four days out, even without A.J. Green, I’m feeling a Cincy straight-up upset.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts (-3, O/U: 47)
Just when I give up on the Colts (3-5) completely, they start to stack up a couple of wins to suck me back in. Meanwhile, everyone has given up on the Jaguars (3-5) as that bandwagon emptied faster than a Golden Corral men’s room after Matt Patricia walks in rubbing his stomach.
Andrew Luck is playing a whole lot like Andrew Luck and Blake Bortles looks suspiciously like Blake Bortles. That explains the line, but not my potential upset selection.
Back from the bye, #Jaguars RB Leonard Fournette (hamstring) is expected to practice today as he nears a return to the field. Star CB AJ Bouye (calf) is still out, but the sense is it won’t be much longer.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) November 7, 2018
Here’s why I like the Jags to steal this one — Doug Marrone has had two weeks to prepare for this game and he’ll have a healthy Leonard Fournette taking the field. Everyone has tossed Jacksonville on the trash heap after four consecutive losses. This is just the type of game where they actually show up and play to the best of their abilities. There’s even a chance we’ll see “Good Blake Bortles.”
Washington Redskins at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3, O/U: 51.5)
Losing to a streaky, but talented Falcons team is no shame for the undermanned and poorly coached Redskins (5-3). Losing to the hapless Buccaneers (3-5) will be a whole other story. If Jay Gruden can take any solace as he stacks up his coaching accomplishments and prepares his resume, he should at least know he’s better than Dirk Koetter.
Buccaneers are 3rd team to allow 275+ points through their first 8 games in Super Bowl era
— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) November 7, 2018
While Ryan Fitzpatrick may be more productive than Jameis Winston in Tampa Bay’s offense, he’s still prone to turn the ball over and there’s no reason to believe Fitzmagic will make a return appearance in 2018. I have no trouble picking the Redskins to win this game outright.
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