NFL Picks Week #3 (2019 regular season)
NFL PICKS (WEEK #3)
BY PROFESSOR MJ
We are not off to a very good start: 2-5 with the official picks.
Now is NOT the time to panic and jump off the ship. I’ve seen this too many times. Sports bettors losing faith and giving up after a losing streak, only to miss out on the upcoming good run.
Take the MLB system plays for example. We were up about 40 units in 2019 through the month of July (based on 508 bets). This means that if your average bet was $100, you were up $4,000.
Then, for the first 22 days in August we lost close to 10 units. But why panic over a bad stretch of 22 days when the systems had shown to work well through the first 4 MONTHS of the season (and I’m not even talking about previous seasons)?
Some bettors possibly gave up and missed out on an astounding comeback: from August 23 to 29 we won a jaw-dropping 14 units by going 19-6, including many big underdogs.
I see some similarities with the stock market. Some people buy shares of a stock, and what do they do if the price drops over many days/weeks/months? That’s right, they sell. And then they curse themselves when the price soars and they realize they sold at the very worst time.
So the message I’m trying to get across is: do you give more weight to the first two WEEKS of this season or the past two YEARS where I hit 58% of my plays (61-44-3 record)?
Largest Bet Ever - We are in Business!!
Before we move on with this week’s picks, I really hope you followed my advice from 4 months ago where I screamed at how underrated I felt the Buffalo Bills were. I showed you how I placed my largest bet ever on Buffalo to win more than 6.5 games this season.
Things are looking up so far. A perfect 2-0 record and 6-point favorites this weekend at home against the Bengals. And don’t forget they are going to play the lowly Dolphins twice this year. They have many other very winnable games; as a matter of fact, their easy schedule was one of my arguments in favor of this play.
I really hope you jumped on board when I shared this play that I felt like it was the best bet I had seen in my 20-year gambling career.
Written Wednesday September 18th, 2019 at 2 PM Eastern Time (spreads/odds may have changed)
PICK #1: Minnesota Vikings -8 vs Oakland Raiders (rated 4 stars)
The Raiders had a nice start to the 2019 season. They kicked off the season with a 24-16 win over the Broncos and then grabbed an early 10-0 lead over the Chiefs. The crowd was going crazy and the players were pumped. But then the Raiders completely collapsed and allowed 28 points in a row in a 28-10 loss over Kansas City.
The Raiders are now headed for their first road game of the season, and they probably don’t feel very good about themselves. Their confidence is likely broken.
Meanwhile, Minnesota had an horrible start at Lambeau Field. They dug themselves into an early 21-0 hole. They fought hard to make it 21-16, but a few bad plays and penalties eventually cost them the game. They could have easily won it.
The Vikings certainly have a chip on their shoulders after such a performance. They will be fired up at home, where they handled a good Falcons team 28 to 12 a couple of weeks ago.
From an injury standpoint, Derek Carr’s new go-to guy, Tyrell Williams, is questionable with a hip pointer. If he misses the game, that would be a huge blow to Oakland’s offense who is clearly lacking depth at the wide receiver position. To make matters worse, rookie running back Josh Jacobs, who has looked great in his first two games, is also questionable with a groin injury. These two guys might suit up, but even if they do, they are clearly banged up.
On the other side, there isn’t any major injury in Minnesota’s camp. They are mostly healthy.
On top of that, you’ve got a West Coast team playing an early Sunday game, which will feel like 10 AM to Raiders players.
Both teams might feel a dip in terms of motivation after playing a divisional opponent last week, so this factor offsets.
PICK #2: Los Angeles Chargers -3 vs Houston Texans (rated 2 stars)
The Chargers are coming off a very disappointing loss in Detroit. They’ll be looking to rebound very quickly in front of their home crowd.
Meanwhile, the Texans might experience a bit of a letdown after an emotional 13-12 win over divisional foes Jacksonville. They were pretty lucky to get the win as Leonard Fournette was stopped an inch close to the end zone that would have converted a two-point conversion.
Houston does not appear to have solved its offensive line problems. After allowing the most sacks in the league last year, the Texans have allowed 6 and 4 sacks in their first two games, respectively.
I’m worried about both Chargers All-Pro safeties being out, Adrian Phillips and Derwin James. Their backups will need to step up their game.
The Texans are going to travel two time zones towards the West Coast of the country.
PICK #3: Cincinnati Bengals +6 at Buffalo Bills (rated 1 star)
If you have been following me a little bit, you know I’ve been screaming for months how underrated the Bills are. Back in May, I told you about my largest bet ever that I placed on Buffalo to win more than 6.5 games this season. So far so good, as Buffalo is showing a perfect 2-0 record.
They will be fired up for their home opener against a weaker opponent, but hold on a second. I don’t see this game being a cakewalk. To me, Buffalo is good enough to beat the best teams in the NFL, but they have not established themselves yet as a team that’s going to crush bad teams. Laying 6 points seems like a stretch to me.
I am worried about Cincinnati’s injury-riddled offensive line against a strong Buffalo defense, but I believe that somehow the Bengals are going to do enough to keep this game close. I wouldn’t be completely shocked if they won the game outright. Remember how they almost won in Seattle, as they lost 21-20. Andy Dalton, Tyler Boyd, John Ross, Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard represent a good core of players on offense.
The Bengals defense isn’t great and Buffalo’s offense has shown signs of improvement after an abysmal 2018 season, but they are unlikely to score more than 25-30 points. Give me the Bengals with the 6 points.
LEAN #1: Kansas City Chiefs -6.5 vs Baltimore Ravens
Sometimes it just seems like the Chiefs could score points at will. They are very impressive and it makes it hard to fade them.
The one thing that prevents me from making this an official pick is the revenge factor. Baltimore will be looking to avenge a 27-24 overtime loss in Kansas City last year.
However, Baltimore’s first two games have not prepared them adequately to such a challenge. They have played the Dolphins and the Cards, two of the worst teams in the league. They did not necessarily dismantled Arizona, as they eked out a 23-17 win at home.
LEAN #2: Dallas Cowboys -21 vs Miami Dolphins
Here is my reasoning behind this one. Let’s say I were to tell you that one of these teams is going to beat the spread by 14 points; which team would you bet? In other words, is it more likely that the Cowboys will win by 7 points or by a 35-point margin?
My own personal answer is: 35 points. It’s hard to envision Miami losing by only a touchdown. They have been just awful. They have lost by an average of 46 points thus far. And both of these games were at home!
The Dolphins might be fielding the worst roster in the history of the league. And this week they kept dumping good players in exchange for draft picks by trading cornerback Minkah Fitzpatrick to Pittsburgh. Miami now owns 5 first-round picks over the next two drafts. That’s all good for the future, but very bad for 2019.
That’s it for this week, let’s get on the winning track right now!!
(Sports Betting Expert / University Professor / PhD in statistics)