“It’s always a struggle. It’s an uphill battle the whole time. But you know what? The rewards are so great, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.” - Jennifer Lopez (J. Lo).
Thanks at least in part to some unexpected COVID-19 news, I went 5-9 in my Week 9 picks, bringing my record for the season to 61-70.
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After five straight non-losing weeks, I'm now coming off two straight losing weeks. Let's get back on track with my Week 10 picks.
Tennessee Titans vs. Indianapolis Colts
Phillip Rivers has been boom or bust this season and coming off a short week, the latter seems more likely. Give me the Titans at home without having to lay any points.
Pittsburgh Steelers -7.5 vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Pick: Steelers -7.5
The Steelers are one of the best teams in the NFL, while despite the excitement surrounding Joe Burrow, the Bengals are one of the worst. Give me
Detroit Lions -3 vs. Washington Football Team
Pick: Football Team +3
The Lions are a different team without Kenny Golladay in the lineup. Assuming Detroit doesn't have its top playmaker, this feels like a good spot for a Washington defense that has quietly been one of the NFL's best.
Cleveland Browns -3 vs. Houston Texans
Pick: Texans +3
This line feels a point or two too high. Despite their 2-6 record, the Texans still have the best quarterback the Browns will have faced since their season opener in Deshaun Watson.
Green Bay Packers -13.5 vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Pick: Jaguars +13.5
In this season especially, it seems like there's a lot of value to be found in taking 13.5 points regardless of the matchup. I play the odds here and hope Aaron Rodgers doesn't make me regret it.
New York Giants +3.5 vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Pick: Giants +3.5
I'm not sure what the Eagles have done this season to justify laying 3.5 points on the road against a Giants team its three spots behind in Football Outsiders' DVOA rankings. Give me New York and the points and maybe even New York outright.
Carolina Panthers +5.5 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Pick: Buccaneers -5.5
The Bucs are coming off arguably the worst loss of the 2020 season, while the Panthers appear primed to pack it in for the rest of their season. I'll bet on Tom Brady and Tampa Bay to bounce back in a big way.
Las Vegas Raiders -5 vs. Denver Broncos
Pick: Broncos +5
The Raiders might be for real, but I don't anticipate them blowing many teams out. At the very least, Drew Lock and an emerging Jerry Jeudy have shown the ability to score on a consistent basis.
Arizona Cardinals -1.5 vs. Buffalo Bills
Pick: Cardinals -1.5
After an uneven start to the season, the Cardinals now lay claim to both a top 10 offense and top 10 defense, according to DVOA. Coming off a big win over the Seahawks, this feels like a potential letdown spot for the Bills.
Los Angeles Rams -1.5 vs. Seattle Seahawks
Pick: Seahawks +1.5
Simply put, I think the Seahawks are the better team. Plus, it's hard to imagine Russell Wilson dropping three of four games, which is what would happen if Seattle lost to the Rams.
New Orleans Saints -9 vs. San Francisco 49ers
Pick: 49ers +9
As mentioned earlier, these big lines seem even larger in a season with so much uncertainty. The 49ers might be banged up, but they're too well-coached to get blown out on a consistent basis.
New England Patriots +7 vs. Baltimore Ravens
Pick: Ravens -7
I liked the way the Ravens bounced back from their loss to the Steelers with a win over the Colts. Bill Belichick may still be in New England, but there's only so much he can do with a seemingly depleted roster.
Miami Dolphins -2.5 vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Pick: Dolphins -2.5
The Dolphins already had a strong foundation, but Tua gives them a newfound upside. Plus, the Chargers have taken over the Falcons as the team most likely to find a way to lose in the final minutes of a game.
Chicago Bears +2.5 vs. Minnesota Vikings
Pick: Vikings -2.5
These two teams seem to be heading in opposite directions. I'll bank on that trend continuing, as even Primetime Kirk Cousins can't stand in the way of what Dalvin Cook's been doing lately.