Wait, Aaron Rodgers is getting 9 1/2 points this week? That Aaron Rodgers?
It just doesn’t seem right. Rodgers and his Green Bay Packers teammates are coming off a bye to play the undefeated Los Angeles Rams, the best team in the league, and the spread is the biggest against Rodgers in his career.
I get it. The Rams have been great so far. But I think Rodgers coming off the bye with his receivers getting healthy will keep this game close.
It was another bad week for me with my picks — two in a row in fact. That’s not good. So take that pick and use it cautiously.
There are a lot of interesting games to pick this week, even a pseudo-playoff game in London between two disappointing teams so far in the Eagles and Jaguars. The loser will have five losses, which will be tough to overcome, even in bad divisions.
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Here are this week’s picks:
Dolphins at Texans (-7.5)
This will be Brock Osweiler again at quarterback for the Dolphins, which means he’s going against his former team. Does it matter? Not here. The Texans defense will be all over him and his limited group of receivers. The Texans will be better on offense as well. Texans take it.
Pick: Texans 27, Dolphins 14
Result: Texans 42, Dolphins 23
Eagles (-3) vs. Jaguars in London
This looked like it might be a big game when the schedule came out. It is — for survival. Both teams have disappointed so far, and the loser is in big trouble. The Jaguars have so many offensive issues that show up weekly and they will again here. Eagles take a close one.
Pick: Eagles 23, Jaguars 17
Broncos at Chiefs (-10)
The Chiefs are the top-ranked scoring offense in the league. But the Broncos did a decent job against them a few weeks back in a game in Denver won by the Chiefs. Denver’s pass rush could be an issue here for the Chiefs, but Kansas City is so good on offense right now that it won’t matter. The Chiefs roll.
Pick: Chiefs 30, Broncos 19
Browns at Steelers (-8)
The Browns are playing consecutive road games, while the Steelers are coming off a bye. That’s a bad combination. These two tied in Week One, but this one will be different. The Steelers have improved since then, and I think that will play out here. Steelers take it.
Pick: Steelers 30, Browns 17
Redskins at Giants (PK)
The Redskins are playing well on defense, especially up front. That’s not a good thing for a Giants offensive line that is playing bad football. Look for the Redskins to dominate up front and force some Eli Manning turnovers. The Redskins will win a physical road game against a team that is playing for the future.
Pick: Redskins 20, Giants 17
Seahawks at Lions (-3)
Seattle is coming off the bye in this one, so they will be rested. They are 3-3 and have a chance to be in the wild-card race. The Lions impressed last week winning at Miami, but I think this will be a game about the Seahawks offense. Look for Seattle to win a tough road game.
Pick: Seahawks 27, Lions 26
Buccaneers at Bengals (-4.5)
The Bucs did some good things in beating the Browns last week, while the Bengals were awful. But I think the Bengals bounce back here. Andy Dalton and the offense will roll up some big numbers against that Tampa Bay defense. Bengals take it.
Pick: Bengals 32, Bucs 27
Jets at Bears (-7)
The Bears have lost two straight to the AFC East, but they won’t lose this one. This is a tough spot for Sam Darnold against a good defense on the road. Look for the Bears to shut down the Jets running game and Darnold to throw two picks that lead to points. The Bears will get it done at home to break the streak.
Pick: Bears 28, Jets 13
Ravens (-2) at Panthers
The Ravens are coming off a tough home loss to the Saints, while Carolina rallied from 17 down to beat the Eagles on the road. That should have the Panthers with momentum, but the Ravens defense should be able to slow down the Panthers offense. Look for Baltimore to come in and win a tough, low-scoring road game.
Pick: Ravens 21, Panthers 18
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Colts (-3) at Raiders
The Raiders are in disarray. They traded away receiver Amari Cooper this week, embracing the rebuild mode. The Colts are playing well on offense, and the Raiders are bad on defense. Look for a big game from Andrew Luck behind his improving offensive line.
Pick: Colts 31, Raiders 20
49ers at Cardinals (PK)
The Cardinals made a change at offensive coordinator, which will help Josh Rosen. But they have major issues on the offensive line. Even so, I think the defense will play well here and limit San Francisco’s offense. Expect a low-scoring game, but the Cardinals take it.
Pick: Cardinals 17, 49ers 14
Packers at Rams (-9.5)
This will be a wild ride. The Packers are coming off a bye, and should be much healthier — especially Aaron Rodgers. The Rams are the best team in the league. This game will be an offensive shootout. In the end, the Rams will win it. But it will be close.
Pick: Rams 34, Packers 31
Saints at Vikings (PK)
This is the rematch of that amazing playoff game from last season, which the Vikings won on the final play. The Saints have been the better team so far this season, but they are playing consecutive road games and the Vikings are back on track after a slow start. Minnesota’s defense will have a good day here.
Pick: Vikings 24, Saints 20
Patriots (-14) at Bills
The Patriots are playing consecutive road games, but that won’t matter here. Buffalo is so inept on offense and the defense let them down last week. Tom Brady and the offense will have a big passing in this one. Patriots big.
Pick: Patriots 31, Bills 10
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