The amount of takes we can get in a given week can be overwhelming, it helps to take a stand on Vegas lines and narrow down how you feel about a game, here are 3 stands I’m taking in Week 3.
1- Public money is right about the under in Chicago. The Over/Under for the Steelers/Bears game opened at 45.5 points. However, 74% of bets are coming in on the under and it’s dropped 1.5 points. Big Ben’s road struggles are well documented, he has a 1-1 TD/INT ratio in road starts at 1PM. Soldier Field has a notoriously slow surface and Vic Fangio will scheme to take the deep ball away. The Bears wide-receiving corps has been abysmal, and turnovers hurt Glennon in Week 2, but with more reps they will regress and be able to hold on to the ball for longer stretches than they did in Tampa. However, they won’t score with Pittsburgh’s defense playing very efficiently. I see a Leveon Bell touchdown, but two coaches perfectly content to battle over field position, and let the clock bleed.
2- The Texans won’t score a touchdown. Belichick can’t be happy about the way his defense has played through two weeks. Enter a rookie quarterback, and a wildly inefficient offense. This is the polar opposite of what they faced in Week’s One and Two. Alex Smith’s historic Week One featured 7 explosive plays, 3 of which went for touchdowns over 20 yards. Drew Brees has been one of the most efficient and dangerous passers at home, in his career and threw the ball 45 times. The Texans will lean on the run, but Lamar Miller has averaged 1 YPC against stacked fronts and only 3 YPC against base fronts, forcing third downs. Watson’s 54% completion rate, and 37% success rate will limit this teams ability to extend drives. Fans in Foxboro get home in time to watch the 4PM kickoff on Fox.
3- Both KC/LAC and DET/ATL go over. This one is spicy and decent defense all around makes me a little squeamish, but with solid QB play, healthy, high upside skill position players on all sides, I think offense wins these matchups. All 4 of these quarterbacks are currently above a 106 passer rating with completion rates higher than 69% and only 2 INTs. We know passing offense is what matters most in today’s NFL and these signal callers bring effective, mistake free football. The home dogs – Chargers/Lions- in these games have been two of the better teams in pass protection this year allowing only 6 total sacks. The Falcons are without Vic Beasley and the Chiefs without Eric Berry, which will allow those underdogs to stick around, forcing Matt Ryan and Alex Smith to answer with touchdowns.