The spotlight NFL Week 11 Picks Against The Spread- Monday Night Football

Believe it or not, week 11 in the 2015 NFL season comes to a close tonight as the 9-0 New England Patriots play host to the 5-4 Buffalo Bills.  We are fresh off of another 5-2 week and now have our overally record up to 59-24 on the season.  The major headline for the Patriots is going to see how they adjust to the loss of wide receiver Julian Edleman.  Whereas the headline for the Buffalo Bills is going to be can they open up a bit of distance for themselves in the wildcard race that has 1 game separating 7 teams currently.  Of course this is also Rex Ryan’s return to Foxboro as the coach of the Buffalo Bills which adds a little extra pizzazz to the matchup for sure.

Yes Rex Ryan has won in Foxboro before, and has even done so in the postseason, but that was a long time ago.   Rex Ryan actually doesn’t have a particularly good record against the Patriots (4-10) despite his insistance that he isn’t there to kiss Bill Belichick’s rings.  Ryan has also long 8 of the last 9 matchups against the Patriots including an 8 point loss to the Pats earlier this season in Buffalo.  The Bills are coming off a big win last week against the Jets but, like I said in my preview for that game, it was Rex Ryan’s Superbowl.  Also, let’s be honest, the Bills won that game moreso due to the Jets’ ineptitude on the offensive side of the ball which included costly turnovers. The Bills offense looked better by finally getting Shady McCo involved in the offense but I’m still generally unimpressed with Tyrod Taylor who threw for only 158 yards last week and who, despite an 11-4 TD-INT ratio is ranked 31st in passing yards amongst qualifying quarterbacks.

Flipping the dime on the Patriots side of things, I’m not going to say that the loss of Julian Edleman is going to be easy but, let’s face it, one of the best things the Patriots do is adjust.  I mean let’s not forget that Bill Belichick once won 11 games with Matt Cassell and we saw how good hes been ever since.  The story before the season was how the Pats would adjust with losing Darrell Revis and they may go 16-0!  They’re all about the next man up and I can see Danny Amedola playing a larger role in the offense for the Pats, sliding into the role once occupied by Edleman.

A rare night as a Jets fan when I’ll actually be rooting hard for the evil empire and sporting some blue.  At the end of the day if you ask me to choose, I’d go Brady over Taylor, Belichick over Ryan and the New England Patriots over the Buffalo Bills any day of the week.

The Pick: Patriots (-7) 


The Spotlight NFL Week 10 Picks Against The Spread- Monday Night Football

Tonight Week 10 in the NFL concludes when the 3-5 Houston Texans head to Cincinnati to take on the 8-0 Bengals. So far this week we are 6-2 against the spread connecting on 5 out of our 7 picks and then closing out last night with a big win by the Arizona Cardinals. We missed at the very last second with the Cowboys and unfortunately losing our first LOCK OF THE WEEK of the season. Our Lock of the week was the Saints who made Kirk Cousins look like a 1st ballot hall of Famer. I think it’s time to officially write the Saints off this season and I have to wonder if Rob Ryan should get his resume together. 

As for tonight’s game, it’s pretty tough as the Bengals are again a huge favorite at -11 1/2. I hate choosing big favorites  in the NFL, even though the Bengals covered their big spread last week and actually are the only team this season perfect against the spread, I’m still rolling with the Texans tonight. A couple of things jump out at me here, for one, the Texans are a bad team coming off a bye and they joined three other under .500 teams coming off byes in week 9, the Lions, the Ravens and the Chiefs. My feeling is that when a bad team goes on a bye, they don’t get to vacation, but instead they spend those two weeks busting ass and preparing for their next opponent for two weeks, so let’s look at it. The Ravens lost to the Jaguars, which is obviously awful, but the Jaguars offense is sneaky good and they lost it at the very last seconds of the game. The Chiefs turned Peyton Manning over four times and destroyed the 7-1 Broncos in their building. Lastly, the Lions went into Lambeau and beat the Packers for the first time since 1991. Do you notice a trend? Next, you have to figure that with Andrew Luck down for 6 weeks, the Texans feel like the division is right there for the taking, so while I still expect them to lose, they should play inspired ball to keep it close. Lastly, Vegas is rarely wrong for all that long and usually adjust to teams that are undefeated against the spread. The 2007 Patriots, for example, went 8-0 against the spread to start their 16-0 regular season but they only finished 2-6 ATS the rest of the way. 

Thus all of that being said, while I’m not flying out to Vegas tonight to drop a huge wager, I like the Houston Texans +11.5 tonight. That will do it for me for now but in just 48 hours I’ll be back to kick off Week number 11! 

The Spotlight On Monday Night Football With Pick Against The Spread 

Week Number 9 in the 2015 NFL season will conclude a little bit later on this evening when the 2-5 Chicago Bears head to San Diego to take on the 2-6 San Diego Chargers. 

I’ll tell ya this is a bit of a disappoint to see where both of these teams stand right now in their respective divisions (3rd & 4th respectively). On paper this game should be a lot more of an intriguing matchup with pro bowl caliber players everywhere from Phillip Rivers to Jay Cutler to Melvin Gordon and back to Alshon Jeffery. Instead, what we have two teams fighting to save their season and remain relevant at least for one more week. 

Logic would say that the Chargers should take this game tonight running away hosting a team with a subpar record in their building but that’s not the way I’m going tonight. While the injuries to both Eddie Royal & Matt Forte won’t help the Bears, the Chargers have far more injuries including 7 injuries alone just last week. Their O Line is banged up, their secondary is depleted & Phillip Rivers will be without his favorite target Keenan Allen. 

I’m as a big a fan of Phillip Rivers as any but 4 1/2 points are too many to back the Chargers against anyone this season. The Bears have had two weeks to prepare for this game and I expect them to keep it close, if they don’t win the game outright. 

Chicago Bears +4.5 is your pick for Monday Night Football tonight.