Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, November 3

Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, November 3

DUNKEL INDEX

Indianapolis at Houston
The Colts travel to Houston on Sunday night to take on a 2-5 Texans team and look to build on their 8-1 ATS record in their last 9 games against teams with a losing SU record. Indianapolis is the pick (-2 1/2) according to Dunkel, which has the Colts favored by 13. Dunkel Pick: Indianapolis (-2 1/2)

Game 401-402: Atlanta at Carolina (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Atlanta 127.435; Carolina 139.723
Dunkel Line: Carolina by 12 1/2; 47
Vegas Line: Carolina by 7 1/2; 43 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Carolina (-7 1/2); Over

Game 403-404: Minnesota at Dallas (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Minnesota 119.754; Dallas 139.883
Dunkel Line: Dallas by 20; 52
Vegas Line: Dallas by 10; 47 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Dallas (-10); Over

Game 405-406: New Orleans at NY Jets (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: New Orleans 140.634; NY Jets 126.818
Dunkel Line: New Orleans by 14; 43
Vegas Line: New Orleans by 5 1/2; 45 1/2
Dunkel Pick: New Orleans (-5 1/2); Under

Game 407-408: Tennessee at St. Louis (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Tennessee 130.554; St. Louis 131.206
Dunkel Line: St. Louis by 1; 43
Vegas Line: Tennessee by 3; 39 1/2
Dunkel Pick: St. Louis (+3); Over

Game 409-410: Kansas City at Buffalo (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Kansas City 138.402; Buffalo 131.608
Dunkel Line: Kansas City by 7; 36
Vegas Line: Kansas City by 3; 40 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Kansas City (-3); Under

Game 411-412: San Diego at Washington (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: San Diego 133.227; Washington 129.361
Dunkel Line: San Diego by 4; 55
Vegas Line: San Diego by 1; 51
Dunkel Pick: San Diego (-1); Over

Game 413-414: Philadelphia at Oakland (4:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Philadelphia 125.408; Oakland 131.191
Dunkel Line: Oakland by 6; 41
Vegas Line: No Line
Dunkel Pick: N/A

Game 415-416: Tampa Bay at Seattle (4:05 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Tampa Bay 122.479; Seattle 141.973
Dunkel Line: Seattle by 19 1/2; 43
Vegas Line: Seattle by 16 1/2; 40
Dunkel Pick: Seattle (-16 1/2); Over

Game 417-418: Baltimore at Cleveland (4:25 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Baltimore 135.014; Cleveland 130.867
Dunkel Line: Baltimore by 4; 37
Vegas Line: Baltimore by 2 1/2; 41
Dunkel Pick: Baltimore (-2 1/2); Under

Game 419-420: Pittsburgh at New England (4:25 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Pittsburgh 129.189; New England 141.125
Dunkel Line: New England by 12; 48
Vegas Line: New England by 7; 44
Dunkel Pick: New England (-7); Over

Game 421-422: Indianapolis at Houston (8:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Indianapolis 139.088; Houston 126.179
Dunkel Line: Indianapolis by 13; 41
Vegas Line: Indianapolis by 2 1/2; 44 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Indianapolis (-2 1/2); Under

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4

Game 423-424: Chicago at Green Bay (8:40 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Chicago 129.477; Green Bay 142.590
Dunkel Line: Green Bay by 13; 46
Vegas Line: Green Bay by 10 1/2; 49 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Green Bay (-10 1/2); Under

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DUNKEL INDEX

NBA

Minnesota at New York
The Knicks take on the 2-0 Timberwolves and look to build on their 13-5 ATS record in their last 18 games against a team with a winning SU record. New York is the pick (-4) according to Dunkel, which has the Knicks favored by 8. Dunkel Pick: New York (-4)

Game 701-702: Boston at Detroit (6:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Boston 117.216; Detroit 118.943
Dunkel Line & Total: Detroit by 1 1/2; 184
Vegas Line & Total: Detroit by 9 1/2; 191
Dunkel Pick: Boston (+9 1/2); Under

Game 703-704: Washington at Miami (6:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Washington 111.905; Miami 132.626
Dunkel Line & Total: Miami by 20 1/2; 208
Vegas Line & Total: No Line
Dunkel Pick: N/A

Game 705-706: Brooklyn at Orlando (6:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Brooklyn 119.224; Orlando 110.785
Dunkel Line & Total: Brooklyn by 8 1/2; 204
Vegas Line & Total: Brooklyn by 6; 196
Dunkel Pick: Brooklyn (-6); Over

Game 707-708: Phoenix at Oklahoma City (7:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Phoenix 115.432; Oklahoma City 123.884
Dunkel Line & Total: Oklahoma City by 8 1/2; 195
Vegas Line & Total: No Line
Dunkel Pick: N/A

Game 709-710: Minnesota at New York (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Minnesota 114.182; New York 123.290
Dunkel Line & Total: New York by 9; 202
Vegas Line & Total: New York by 4; 195
Dunkel Pick: New York (-4); Over

Game 711-712: Atlanta at LA Lakers (9:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Atlanta 112.567; LA Lakers 119.033
Dunkel Line & Total: LA Lakers by 6 1/2; 197
Vegas Line & Total: Atlanta by 2 1/2; 205
Dunkel Pick: LA Lakers (+2 1/2); Under

NHL

New Jersey at Minnesota
The Wild come in riding a 5-1 record in their last 6 home games and look to take advantage of a Devils' team that is 4-22 in it last 26 road games. Minnesota is the pick (-175) according to Dunkel, which has the Wild favored by 1 1/2. Dunkel Pick: Minnesota (-175)

Game 51-52: Dallas at Ottawa (1:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Dallas 11.064; Ottawa 10.750
Dunkel Line & Total: Dallas by 1/2; 6
Vegas Line & Total: Ottawa (-135); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Dallas (+115); Over

Game 53-54: Calgary at Chicago (7:30 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: Calgary 10.753; Chicago 11.747
Dunkel Line & Total: Chicago by 1; 5
Vegas Line & Total: Chicago (-245); 5 1/2
Dunkel Pick: Chicago (-245); Under

Game 55-56: New Jersey at Minnesota (8:00 p.m. EST)
Dunkel Ratings: New Jersey 10.783; Minnesota 12.060
Dunkel Line & Total: Minnesota by 1 1/2; 4
Vegas Line & Total: Minnesota (-175); 5
Dunkel Pick: Minnesota (-175); Under

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Bryan Leonard

San Diego / Washington Over 51

The Chargers have fared well traveling east this year with wins and covers at Philadelphia and Jacksonville. They also won outright but pushed ATS at Tennessee. But each of those teams have offensive questions and Washington can put points on the board. The Chargers have permitted 27 to Oakland, 30 to Philadelphia and 31 to Houston. It's likely that none of those clubs would be playoff bound. League average in yards per play is 5.35 yet San Diego averages 6.1 while allowing 6.3. Washington on the other hand averages 5.7 while allowing 6.0. So both of these offenses are capable while both defenses have struggled mightily.

Washington has a solid running game that should find big success against this Charger run defense which is among the worst in the league. Meanwhile San Diego doesn't have that ability so we look for a great deal of passes from the Chargers and Philip Rivers. We expected this total to be at least three points higher than the current number of 51, we expect line movement that way.

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Spartan

Baltimore -2.5

I've had some real solid success this season thus far picking my spots with the Ravens and I'm going back to them here sunday as they clash with divisional rival Cleveland. The Browns plus the points were our free NFL selection last week and they cashed the ticket for us despite dropping a heart breaker at Arrowhead against the unbeaten Chiefs. Poor Cleveland, their fans are among the most loyal in the league and deserve better. I don't expect a game here for those who enjoy lots of points, that's not happening. But if you're like me and don't mind watching two very solid defenses show their wares, then sit back and enjoy. This will be a war. Baltimore is one of those teams that can start inexplicably slow and then pick up steam as the schedule moves along. I fully, very fully expect John Harbaugh to have his team ready here. Now, my clients are well aware I am no trend geek, far from it. But I assure you I do look at each game from every angle. It's what I'm paid to do. Here is a little tidbit, Ravens HC Harbaugh has never, yes never, not covered a game against the number when taking his team into action coming off a bye. That my friends is relevant. It won't be a game for the faint of heart as I expect bloodshed. But from a wagering perspective, I say let's go with Harbaugh to keep his record after bye weeks intact here when the dust settles.

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Brenton Ayton

Chicago Bears vs. Green Bay Packers
Play: Green Bay Packers -10

Bears are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS loss. Bears are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 road games. Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring more than 30 points in their previous game. Bears are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a S.U. loss. Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games after accumulating more than 350 total yards in their previous game. Bears are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games on grass. Bears are 2-12 ATS in their last 14 vs. NFC. Bears are 1-9-1 ATS in their last 11 games after allowing more than 350 total yards in their previous game. Bears are 0-4 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Bears are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games after allowing more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game. Bears are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall. Bears are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 vs. NFC North. Bears are 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games after allowing more than 250 yards passing in their previous game. Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game. Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games overall. Packers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in Week 9. Packers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games after accumulating more than 250 yards passing in their previous game. Packers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game. Packers are 15-5 ATS vs. a team with a winning record. Packers are 9-3-1 ATS in their last 13 games in November. Packers are 26-9 ATS in their last 35 vs. NFC North. Packers are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 vs. NFC. Packers are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games after allowing less than 150 yards passing in their previous game. Packers are 35-16-2 ATS in their last 53 home games. Packers are 34-16-1 ATS in their last 51 games on grass. Favorite is 5-0 ATS in their last 5 meetings. Bears are 7-18-1 ATS in their last 26 meetings. Bears are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 meetings in Green Bay.

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Ben Burns

Falcons vs Panthers
Pick: Under 44

I successfully played on the Falcons to finish below the total last week. With this number currently sitting at 44 at some shops, I believe that Atlanta is again providing us with solid value on the "under." The Falcons, banged-up at the receiver position, managed only 13 points at Arizona last week. Meanwhile, the Panthers allowed just 13. They've now surrendered 15 or fewer points in three straight games. Over their last five contests, they've given up a combined 60 points, an average of just 12 per game. For the season, the Panthers are permitting just nine points (279 yards) per game, at home. While every year is of course very different, its still worth noting that the Falcons have been a very profitable "under" team in the month of November, the past couple of seasons; eight of their last nine November games have dipped below the total. Looking back a number of years and we find that the Panthers have seen the "under" go 10-2 the last dozen times that they were favored in the 7.5 to 10 range. During that time, the "under" is also 37-14-2 when they were off a divisional win. If you can get 44, or better, consider a play on the Under.

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Nick Parsons

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Buffalo Bills    
Play: Buffalo Bills +3½

Kansas City is without question this season's biggest surprise, sitting at 8-0 as we enter Week 9.

As a "situational" capper, these are the types of "situations" that I keep my eyes open for, as this sets up as a "look ahead/let down" spot for the Chiefs.

After two straight home games (an emotional 17-16 victory over the Texans two weeks ago and a somewhat lacklustre 23-17 win over the Browns last Sunday), Kansas City hits the road to face the lowly Bills. After Buffalo it then has its bye; this is a classic "look ahead" situation, especially with the Broncos on deck after its break.

After their 35-17 loss at New Orleans last week, the Bills obviously have nothing to lose. But after two straight road games (a 23-21 win over the Fish two weeks ago), Buffalo has a big opportunity here to build on its already impressive 5-3 ATS record as an underdog this year and 4-0 ATS mark in front of the home town crowd.

The Bills would hammer the Chiefs 35-17 in these teams lone matchup last year. The chances of a repeat performance of that magnitude are pretty slim, but the oddsmakers are agreeing with me that this is going to be a difficult one for Andy Reid and company.

Great value on a super situational play. While the outright win isn't out of the question, I will in the recommend grabbing the points.

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Art Aronson

Philadelphia vs. Oakland
Pick: Oakland

The visiting Philadelphia Eagles sit at 3-5 SU and ATS coming off a 15-7 loss at the New York Giants last Sunday. LeSean McCoy, the NFL's leading rusher, was held to 48 yards on 15 carries. DeSean Jackson had 63 yards receiving on eight catches. The Eagles followed a 17-3 loss to Dallas with another poor offensive performance. They had just 201 yards of offense and have totaled 479 the past two weeks. The Oakland Raiders sit at 3-4 SU and 4-2-1 ATS after a 21-18 win at home over the Pittsburgh Steelers. Terrell Pryor had nine carries for 106 yards and a rushing TD to go with 88 passing yards and two INTs. Darren McFadden returned from injury to gain 73 rushing yards and two TDs on 23 carries.  The Raiders are now 3-1 at home and is 3-2 ATS as the underdog this season.  The Eagles are just 3-5 ATS in all games this season and are 2-4 ATS as the favorite this season. Philadelphia has not scored an offensive touchdown in the last two weeks and is really suffering from poor QB play. Take the points with Oakland who play its’ second straight at home.

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Bryan Power

Tampa Bay vs. Seattle
Pick: Tampa Bay

As horrible a play as it might look on paper, I believe backing the Bucs (w/ the points) is the way to go Sunday in Seattle.  The Seahawks are on a short week and they have major offensive line issues, which led to a dreadful performance Monday against a bad Rams team...

Seattle was lucky to win on Monday Night Football as they were outgained by over 200 total yards.  They finished with just 135 total yards and seven first downs for the game, gaining an average of only 3.4 yards per play! Their defense bailed them out with a goal line stand at the end of the game, but concerning was the fact they allowed a Rams team that previously had not been effective running the football to go for 200 yards on the ground.  The offensive line was an even greater concern as they allowed seven sacks, which could become an issue due to QB Russell Wilson's small stature.  Both starting tackles are still out and now so too is one of Wilson's top targets, WR Sidney Rice.  Percy Harvin, who the team traded for in the offseason, is still not ready to go.

I am concerned that Bucs HC Greg Schiano has lost the team.  But still winless on the year, if the Bucs are going to get up for any game, it would be here.  The situation is favorable on their end as they last played on a Thursday.   Road Underdogs on a losing streak of seven games or more have covered 67% of the time since 1983.

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Re: Free Picks: Service Plays for Sunday, November 3

Mike O'ConnorFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Tennessee (-3) 23 ST. LOUIS 17FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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After a strong 3-1 start the Titans have lost their last three prior to their bye this past week. However, those three losses were against three of the best teams in the league (Chiefs, Seahawks, 49ers) with their backup QB starting two of those games and with Jake Locker still hobbled in their last game against the 49ers. I expect a good performance in this spot from the Titans with a healthy Locker and extra preparation time coming off of the bye. The Rams, on the other hand, enter this game off of an emotionally draining 9-14 home loss to division rival Seattle on Monday night football where they had a chance to win the game late. While the Titans have the extra preparation time, the Rams have a day less and appear to be a bit banged up coming out of a physical contest with Seattle. My model favors the Titans by 5.2 points and they also benefit from a negative 44-76-3 situation that plays against the Rams here. There is a lot of coaching/player familiarity here with HC Jeff Fisher and much of his staff that includes numerous former Titans assistants — Dave McGinnis (Rams assistant head coach), Chuck Cecil (secondary), Frank Bush (linebackers) and Ray Sherman (wide receivers). There are also several players on the Rams that are former Titans (CB Finnegan, DE Hayes, TE Cook, LB Witherspoon). Despite the coaching familiarity which should favor the Rams here in a non-conference spot, I lean Tennessee minus the points due to the preparation time difference and line value.
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NY JETS (+6) 25 New Orleans 24FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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In a good spot coming off their bye, the Saints performed well last week in beating the Bills at home 35-17. Drew Brees played very well as usual and the Saints held the Bills hobbled rushing attack to just 88 yards and 3.5 ypc. While their passing offense has been very good, the Saints have struggled in the run game as they have averaged only 87 yards at 3.7 ypr to teams that allow 112 yards at 4.2 ypr. I don’t see that getting any better this week against an excellent Jets run defense that is allowing 78 yards at 3.2 ypr to teams that gain 103 yards at 4.0 ypr. The question is whether the Jets can slow down the Saints passing offense and after last week that is a real question mark as the Jets allowed Andy Dalton to pass for 323 yards at 10.4 yps and 5 touchdowns. Both coaches should know their opponents defense pretty well here as Rex faces brother Rob and I don’t believe that it will be an advantage either way but it will provide an interesting strategic matchup to watch. My model only favors the Saints by 2.4 points and the Jets qualify in a 233-143-17 situation while the Saints qualify in a negative 81-162-8 situation that plays against them in this spot. I like the Jets plus the points.
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CAROLINA (-7.5) 28 Atlanta 14FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Falcons looked like a completely different team last week in their 13-27 loss to the Cardinals as they were thoroughly outplayed. With RB Rashard Mendenhall out, RB Andre Ellington exploded out of the gate and powered the Cardinals to a 201 at 6.7 ypc to 27 yards at 1.9 ypc advantage. With no running game at all and without his top receivers Matt Ryan played poorly, passing for only 3.7 yps with 4 sacks and 4 interceptions. This week they travel to Carolina to face the red hot Panthers who have won and covered their last 3 games. Last Thursday night the Panthers dominated the Bucs in Tampa, winning 31-13 behind a dominant rushing performance (134 yards at 5.4 ypr to Tampa’s 48 yards at 3.4 ypr). Carolina’s adjusted numbers from the line of scrimmage are slightly better than average overall but they have played very efficient football, particularly on defense where they are allowing 22.1 yards per point to teams that otherwise require only 15.5 yards per point (2nd best in the league). The Panthers have advantages here both running and passing the football and will qualify in a couple of situations (647-473-40 and 274-168-14) if this line moves down to -7 or better. I like the Panthers.
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San Diego (-1) 31 WASHINGTON 22FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Chargers come into this game off of their bye and a 24-6 win at Jacksonville. After a 1-2 start, the Chargers have gone 3-1 since with notable wins against the Cowboys and the Colts. Their passing offense is playing lights out (averaging 294 yards at 7.9 yps to teams that allow 244 yards at 6.5 yps) while the run game so far this season has been a bit below average. As good as the pass offense has been, they have not been very good on defense overall (allowing 379 yards at 6.3 yppl to teams that average 340 yards at 5.3 yppl) although there has been improvement recently. Last week the Redskins led the Broncos 21-7 in the third quarter before being outscored 38-0 the rest of the way and a competitive game turned into a blowout quickly. Washington was held to just 266 total yards at 3.8 yppl while the Broncos rolled up 449 yards at 5.9 yppl. Season numbers show the Redskins to be a bit better than their 2-5 record would indicate although line of scrimmage yardage based stats can be misleading at times if a team finds themselves behind and playing catch-up as the Redskins have in several games this year. My model likes the Chargers here quite a bit and I have conflicting situations that apply to both teams but I like the spot for the Chargers (although it is a 10AM PST start) as they are coming off the bye and are well rested.
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Philadelphia (+2.5) 24 OAKLAND 20FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Eagles are a team that has been in a bit of a free fall lately due to injuries that have created a rotating carousel of quarterbacks. It looks like Nick Foles will get the start here and while he was terrible against the Cowboys two weeks ago he is an upgrade over Matt Barkley. Adjusted season numbers show the Eagles to still be a good rushing team (I have adjusted for the absence of Michael Vick who has accounted for 25.6% of their rushing numbers and who will not play here.) While overall defensive numbers are poor, the Eagles defense has played better recently (allowing 17 points to the Cowboys and 15 points to the Giants the past two weeks). After two divisional losses the Eagles now travel to Oakland to face a Raiders team that played a tough defensive game last week against the Steelers and came away with a 21-18 victory. Offensively the Raiders were bad and outside of a 93 yard Terrelle Pryor touchdown run to start the game, the rest of the day the Raiders offense could only generate 186 total yards at 3.3 yppl. Season numbers show a team that is not very good on offense when subtracting out the quarterbacks rushing numbers (their leading rusher with 391 yards at 7.4 ypr and 40.4% of their rushing offense) and limiting Pryor in this area will be the primary focus for the Eagles defensively this week. I have several situations in play here (a 62-21-2 situation that plays on the Eagles and a negative 38-73-1 situation that plays against the Raiders). My model likes the Eagles here as well (-3.9) and they have played their best on the road this year (0-4 at home and 3-1 away). I like the Eagles plus the points.
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Tampa Bay (+15.5) 14 SEATTLE 24FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Tampa Bay is not very good this year at 0-7 and the coach appears to be losing the team with players grumbling about lack of confidence in the schemes and overall dissatisfaction with the way things are handled internally. The home loss to the Panthers in prime-time on Thursday night last week (13-31) was embarrassing and in the process they lost another offensive starter in WR Mike Williams after losing RB Doug Martin last week. It doesn’t get much easier this week as they travel to Seattle to play one of the best teams in the league in one of the most difficult venues to win in. They may catch a break here, however, as the Seahawks are coming off of a hard fought, down to the wire win against division rival St. Louis on Monday night football this past week and have a cross country trip to Atlanta on deck. I don’t expect the Seahawks A-game here but I’m not sure if Schiano has completely lost the team and while I have a couple of situations that the Bucs qualify in (151-86-10 and 123-88) I am not sure what the Bucs mindset is at this point so I will just lean to Tampa plus the points.
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Pittsburgh (+6) 19 NEW ENGLAND 21FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Steelers come into this game off of a cross country loss to the Raiders in Oakland 18-21 last week. After some improvement the previous couple of games, the Steelers run attack was almost completely snuffed out as they were held to just 35 yards at 1.8 ypr. On the season they are averaging just 69 yards rushing at 3.3 ypr to teams that allow 103 yards at 3.9 ypr, which has dragged down their overall offensive numbers. They have played well defensively in limiting teams that average 334 yards at 5.3 yppl to 304 yards at 5.0 yppl but have just not generated turnovers. They are -9 in net turnovers on the season, much of which can be attributed to luck (-6 in net fumbles). They now travel to play the Patriots who are coming off of a 27-17 win at home against division rival Miami. Trailing 17-3 at halftime the Patriots outscored the Dolphins 24-0 in the second half to get the win and the cover. The Patriots have been carried by their defense this year, a few clutch plays by Tom Brady, and a +7 net turnover margin (+3 in net fumbles). My model favors the Steelers and with the fact that they are coming off a loss and need this game while the Patriots are coming off a big divisional win and may not be quite as focused here, I like Pittsburgh plus the points.
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Baltimore (-2.5) 22 CLEVELAND 15FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Ravens come into this game off the bye and a loss to division rival Pittsburgh 16-19 the week prior. After a 2-1 start the Ravens have now lost three of their last four games, all by three points or less. The bye week came at a good time for the Ravens to regroup and I am sure that HC John Harbaugh will have his team prepared to play in this game. Harbaugh is 11-2 SU and 10-3 ATS with rest (including Week 1) and faced a similar situation last year coming off the bye and facing the Browns in Cleveland as a 3.5 point favorite. The Ravens won that game 25-15 and easily covered the number. The Ravens main issue this season has been their inability to run the football and as a result there has been some reshuffling along the offensive line with the trade for LT Eugene Monroe and the subsequent release of Bryant McKinnie a few weeks ago. With the extra time to prepare the Ravens have focused on their run game while at the same time they have gotten a bit healthier. The Browns, meanwhile, have been a very good defensive team this year but have really struggled offensively. 3rd string QB Jason Campbell came in last week and played a pretty good game against the Chiefs, passing for 283 yards at 7.6 yps without an interception and only being sacked once. I’m not sure that level of production is sustainable and I expect a regression back to career level numbers for Jason Campbell in this game. I have situations that go both ways here but my model favors Baltimore (-3.2) and in combination with the Harbaugh coaching angle I like the Ravens minus the points.
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GREEN BAY (-10.5) 34 Chicago 18FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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On a four game win streak, the Packers now sit atop the NFL North with a 5-2 record and a half game lead on Detroit. Last week against the Vikings and without several of his receiving options available, Aaron Rodgers continued his stellar play by completing 24 of 29 passes for 282 yards and 9.1 yps. With a ground game this year, the Packers offense is balanced and very difficult to defend. This week they will be facing a Bears defense that has played well below average and will have matchup problems as they attempt to defend the Packers offensive attack. Jay Cutler had played well so far this year in the new scheme with an upgraded offensive line but was knocked out of the Redskins game and gave way to back up Josh McCown and the offense didn’t miss a beat. Now that he has had two weeks to prepare and get 1st team reps I expect him to play well. I just don’t believe the Bears will be able to keep up with the Packers here as Green Bay sports the much better defense and have been very good against the run (allowing 84 yards at 3.8 ypc to teams that gain 108 yards at 4.2 ypc). If the Bears don’t have balance with the run game it will be very difficult for McCown to have a lot of success. My model favors Green Bay by 13.3 points and the Packers qualify in 70-39-4 and 40-19-2 situations. If the line drops below 10, a 274-168-14 situation that plays on the Packers will also be triggered. I like the Packers minus the points.

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Randall The HandleFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Falcons (2-5) at Panthers (7-0)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The division leading Saints are greater than a touchdown favourite here against the Falcons … wait, it’s the Panthers favoured by this much over Atlanta? We understand that the recent hardships of the Falcons combined with Carolina’s three-game tear have influenced the marketplace for this one. But the Panthers won’t be facing the Vikes, Rams or Bucs here. They’ll be hosting a division opponent and one that was a three-point favourite on this field last season. Granted, this is a beat up visitor but the Falcons can do something that the Panthers struggle with and that is passing the ball. Carolina ranks 29th in the league, a league that is more pass happy than ever. By comparison, Atlanta has the fourth-ranked throwing game. Of course, the Dirty Birds are without a couple of its star receivers but Matt Ryan is completing 65% of his passes and with guys like Tony Gonzalez and to a lesser degree Harry Douglas, Matty Ice still has the ability to inflict damage. Quality franchises don’t roll over and play dead, especially in division. This price is too attractive to pass up on. TAKING: FALCONS +71/2
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Chargers (4-3) at Redskins (2-5)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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San Diego’s stock is up while Washington’s is down. Perfect spot to step in and grab a return on an undervalued side. With the resurgence of QB Philip Rivers, the Chargers have been a pleasant surprise this season. They return from their break above .500 and that includes a noticeable win over the Colts. However, San Diego’s road play has been average at best. While the Bolts are 2-2 on the road, their two wins were against the hapless Eagles and the useless Jaguars. San Diego lost games in Tennessee and Oakland, not exactly the creme de la crème. All the while, the Redskins were taking on the Cowboys, Bears and Broncos with only Chicago visiting FedEx Field. Against the Broncos last week, the ‘Skins had a 21-7 lead before high altitude and Peyton Manning took over. Mike Shanahan made a big mistake when trying to have his guys pass their way to a win in Denver. Shanahan teams like to run and are most efficient when doing so. Expect them to get back to that here with a rewarding result. TAKING: REDSKINS +1
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Ravens (3-4) at Browns (3-5)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Hope springs eternal and so it is with the Browns as they continue to do battle but with rarely a good result. With Baltimore struggling, we get a reduced line and one that cannot be ignored. Since John Harbaugh’s arrival as coach of the Ravens, his team has won 10 straight over this divisional foe. The savvy coach will have had two weeks to get ready for this one and it is an important one as Baltimore was on a two game skid prior to its break. With a key contest on deck against division leading Bengals next week, Baltimore can climb back into contention with a couple of wins. QB Jason Campbell will get his second straight start for Cleveland and while he did a serviceable job last week, the 8-year journeyman quarterback is not the saviour here. Cleveland rarely gets past 17 points. It scored just six points in an earlier contest with this guest. This one lines up well for the champs and we think they take full advantage. TAKING: RAVENS –2½
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Vikings (1-6) at Cowboys (4-4)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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While the Cowboys are an adventure series each week, all they do is cover. The ‘Boys have been money makers in seven of eight weeks thus far. They could add to that total here. Dallas’ offence is dangerous. QB Tony Romo is capable of shredding apart a Minnesota pass defence that has allowed 16 receiving touchdowns to date. The Vikings lack the ability to trade punches with the Cowboys as they continue to play musical quarterbacks. Coach Leslie Frazier would not disclose who his starter would be this week. He wanted it to be secret with his 1-6 club. Like anyone cares. Dallas is home after two away and should be all business after an agonizing loss last week. TAKING: COWBOYS –10
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Saints (6-1) at Jets (4-4)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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While it’s easy to like the Saints and the great season they are having, it’s even easier to dismiss the Jets here after last week’s 49-9 dismantling to the Bengals. However, this New York team has defined resilience this season by coming back with a win after each of its losses. The Jets can stop the run and had been good against the pass. The Saints don’t have a threatening ground game and they are less potent with Drew Brees’ favourite target, TE Jimmy Graham, on the limp. Saints haven’t been as dominant on the road and you just know Rex Ryan’s Jets will put forth a strong effort after last week’s embarrassment. TAKING: TAKING: JETS +6
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Titans (3-4) at Rams (3-5)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Titans still play like a boring Jeff Fisher team. The Rams are a boring Jeff Fisher team. Having said that, why are the Titans favoured here? Is it because the Rams don’t have a passing game? That would be funny because Tennessee currently ranks 28th in the league throwing with just 1461 yards tossed. It’s not like the Titans’ running game can bail them out either as it ranks 21st and has accounted for only three rushing touchdowns on the season. The Rams have plenty of their own issues but spirits are high after coming within a yard of upsetting the Seahawks on Monday. Expect carryover and a mild upset over a meek visitor. TAKING: RAMS +3
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Chiefs (8-0) at Bills (3-5)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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The Bills give up a lot of passing touchdowns, 20 to be exact and the most in the league. But with Alex Smith and his pop gun passing game coming to Rich Stadium, that doesn’t seem to be a problem. While the Chiefs are undefeated, it is clear that oddsmakers are not quite sold on them. If they were, Kansas would be favoured by a lot more than a field goal here. Perhaps the home town mystique figures in as Buffalo is a perfect 4-0 against the spread as hosts with wins over the Ravens and Panthers and last second losses to the Patriots and Bengals. It also doesn’t help KC that top offensive producer Jamal Charles is hobbling around this week with a sore knee. TAKING: BILLS +3
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Eagles (3-5) at Raiders (3-4)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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These two met in the Super Bowl once. Honestly, look it up. More recently though, the Raiders offered value when taking points last week to a porous Pittsburgh squad last week. The roles are suddenly reversed as Oakland is now a favourite and that has us looking at the dog. Philadelphia’s offence has stagnated recently, largely due to quarterback injuries. Nick Foles should be ready for this one and Foles provides the Eagles with their best chance at a win. For whatever reason, Philly plays better on the road with all three wins occurring as visitors. Oakland is improved and they compete most days but they don’t have the offence to stay with the Eagles, not just yet. TAKING: EAGLES +2½
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Buccaneers (0-8) at Seahawks (7-1)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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So you spotted double digits with the Seachickens on Monday night and lost so you’re reluctant to do it again here? Don’t be. We all know how tough it is for visiting teams to compete in Seattle. If there truly is a 12th man in this league, it is the fans, noise and commotion that occurs at CenturyLink. With the Seahawks home for just the second time in six weeks and after a pair on the road, expect their crazed fans to be overly animated for this one. The Buccaneers are among the worst teams in the league. As teams look at tape of Tampa’s rookie QB, who has been thrown to the wolves, things will get worse before they get better. TAKINGS: SEAHAWKS –16
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Steelers (2-5) at Patriots (6-2)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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When you’ve given up 26 sacks in seven games while administering just 10 the other way, you know there’s a problem. Pittsburgh’s current record will confirm that and now it will head to Foxboro to face a coaching staff that will eat this up faster than kids devouring this week’s candy stash ... The Steelers haven’t scored more than 19 points in more than a month. That’s not going to cut it here. While many are down on the Patriots because they aren’t scoring like a pinball machine these days, New England still wins. They’ve lost only three times in past 37 on this field. Pittsburgh’s defence is older and slower and can’t stop the run. Nor will it stop much else on this day. TAKING: PATRIOTS –6
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Colts (5-2) at Texans (2-5)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Colts are a sexy pick these days after knocking off previously undefeated Broncos. But it’s a big change for Indy to head into Houston as the favourite. With the momentum of the Denver win, Indianapolis hardly needed a bye week. Conversely, it couldn’t have come at a better time for the Texans. While Houston’s defence remains solid, its offence was in complete disarray with QB Matt Schaub at the helm. It appears that Case Keenum will get an opportunity to take the reins for a while and we’re comfortable with that. Other than quarterback, this was basically the same Houston team that was a 10½-point choice in this matchup last year. This is an overreaction to recent events. TAKING: HOUSTON +21/2
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Bears (4-2) at Packers (5-2)FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Could have been a good Monday nighter but the Bears are banged up with its most significant injury to QB Jay Cutler. It’s never easy to win at Lambeau but with Chicago having an extra week to get Josh McCown ready and with the familiarity factor between these two, there are just too many points being offered here. Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers is a freak as he seems to get his numbers no matter who he is throwing to. But backups tend to make mistakes and these Bears thrive on that. Chicago’s coaching staff knows it can’t win a shootout but if they run the ball and take advantage of any Green Bay miscues, they can keep it close. We’ll count on that. TAKING: BEARS +11

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SPORTS WAGERS

Pittsburgh +6½ over NEW ENGLAND

Just when you thought Pittsburgh had changed its ways, they drop a loose deuce in, of all places, Oakland. That’s where good teams go to pad their record but the Steelers self-destructed again with Big Ben throwing up passes ala Brett Favre. The Steelers don’t have a lot of appeal right now (when you score less than 20 in five games, including both of your wins, it doesn’t leave much margin for error) but this isn’t about backing the Steelers as much as it is about fading the Patriots in a bad spot.

New England was fortunate that the Dolphins decided to sit on their halftime lead last week instead of going for the throat. Tommy Boy of Boston continues to insist there’s no problem with his throwing hand but over the last four games he has two touchdowns and passer ratings of 52.2, 74.7, 53.5 and 69.5. Those are Mark Sanchez numbers, not the Master of the Sweater Vest. If something isn’t wrong, you could fool us. His Week 10 bye can’t come soon enough and the same can be said for the entire roster. The Patriots are cruising with a 6-2 record. They know it and we know it that none of the other teams in the AFC East are good enough to catch them. Patriots are 4-0 at home but bear almost no resemblance to the Patriots of the last five or even 10 years. No team has been looking forward to the bye more than the Patriots and a little complacency figures to set in before said bye. Now Brady with his sore hand will face the league’s best pass defense, statistically. We may not even need the points here because this is precisely the type of game the Steelers can win outright.


Philadelphia +118 over OAKLAND

The Raiders are pure garbage but because of a couple of recent wins over San Diego at 3:30 in the morning and more recently Pittsburgh, they are now favored over the reeling Eagles. Not for a second are we biting on this favorite. Terrelle Pryor showed how to beat the Steelers passing defense - just don't pass. Pryor only threw for 88 yards but ran in an NFL record 93-yard touchdown to open the Steelers game. Pryor is still well below average and hasn't thrown for more than 225 yards more than once. The Raiders did not score in the second half last week and they were outgained in the air 241 to 82. There’s an old saying we subscribe that applies here; don’t lay juice ort points with bad football teams.

The Eagles stock has hit rock bottom after another horrible display last week against the lifeless Giants. Can the Eagles really be this bad? With Michael Vick playing, yes they can but Philly Chip has named Nick Foles as his starter this week and Foles is dangerous with all those weapons he has at his disposal. The NFC is so bad that the Eagles actually have a chance to win the division with their 3-5 record and it has to begin here. Philly is actually more comfortable on the road, as all three of their wins this season have been away from home and this one is just as winnable as those others. We’re buying low.

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Wunderdog

Kansas City at Buffalo
Pick: Over 39.5

I think that if you asked almost anyone at the start of the season that who the lone NFL unbeaten team entering week nine would be, none would have said Kansas City. The Chiefs have not surrendered more than 17 points in any game this season, and that certainly makes the defense look invincible. But are they? The cold hard facts are that the Chiefs have an average defense. They have allowed 5.4 yards per play to a schedule of teams that average 5.4 yards a play. They are allowing 4.7 yards per rushing attempt to teams that average 4.0. It really has been a lot of luck, and some smoke and mirrors and an easy schedule. The quarterbacks that the Chiefs have had to face (in a QB league) have been pretty bad. Buffalo has been the most consistent scoring offense in the NFL, as they have scored between 17-24 points in all seven games, and 20+ in all but one. The problem is that the defense has allowed 21+ in all seven games. So I really think the over playing of the Chiefs defense has kept the total to low here. The Bills have played the last four OVER the total and over the past three seasons, they are 19-8 OVER in the underdog role and 8-1 OVER when the total is set low (under 42.5 points). I like this one to go OVER the total.

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Doug Upstone

Cleveland Browns vs. Baltimore Ravens
Play: Baltimore Ravens -1.5

On Sunday, Play On road favorites like Baltimore after two or more consecutive losses, a marginal losing team (40% to 49%), playing a losing team like Cleveland. In the last 30 years, this rare system is 25-6 ATS, 80.6 percent, including winning the last nine in a row.

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River City Sharps

Redskins PK

We really like the angle playing against the West Coast team travelling East for a 1 p.m. start. The Redskins are coming off a tough loss last week to the Broncos and even though they are 2-5 on the season, they still can stay in touch of the division lead with a win Sunday. Philip Rivers has been much more consistent this season for the Chargers and he will face a porous Redskin defense. Fortunately for Washington, they do get Merriweather back this week, which should help the pass defense. This just feels like a game the Chargers lose and the east coast travel is difficult for any team. The Skins take it to keep their slim division hopes alive!

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Sean Murphy
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Pittsburgh vs. New England
Pick: Pittsburgh
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You can throw records out the window when these two AFC rivals hook up.
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The underdog has won outright in three straight, and seven of nine meetings this millennium.
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While I'm not counting on the Steelers to win outright this week, I do expect them to give the Patriots a serious test.
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Pittsburgh traveled to the west coast and fell by a 21-18 score in Oakland last week. That brought an end to the Steelers modest two-game winning streak. They shouldn't have trouble getting back up for this game, as the Patriots always seem to draw their best effort. Note that Pittsburgh prevailed by a 25-17 score when these two teams last met in 2011. In their most recent meeting here in Foxboro, the Steelers walked away with a 33-10 blowout victory as a one-point underdog in 2008.
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Obviously things have changed considerably for both teams over the years. With that being said, I'm not sure the Patriots are deserving of the lofty pointspread this week.
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New England survived against Miami last Sunday, as the Dolphins essentially handed them the game on a silver platter in the second half after building a sizable early lead. Note that the 10-point victory marked the first time the Pats won a game by more than a touchdown since September 22nd against hapless Tampa Bay. Those are the only two times New England has won by more than seven in eight games this season.
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I think it's also worth pointing out that the Pats have been outgained in terms of total yardage in each of their last two contests. The return of TE Rob Gronkowski has done little to spark the offense. Tom Brady continues to play some of the worst football of his entire career, throwing just two touchdowns compared to four interceptions over the last four games.
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The Steelers season has been somewhat of a disaster to this point, but they're not about to wave the white flag. At 2-5 they sit only three games back of the AFC North-leading Bengals, who are coming off a loss on Thursday night in Miami. Pittsburgh will still hold a game in hand following Sunday's contest. Sure, there are two other teams to leap-frog as well, and reaching the postseason would only be considered a lofty goal at this point, but my point is, the Steelers aren't in position to quit. There schedule will be manageable over the next while, with four of their next six games coming at home after wrapping things up in New England.
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The fact that the Patriots are banged-up defensively could prove to be the great equalizer in this game. While the Steelers offense has sputtered, the talent is still there for a breakout performance. Look for Pittsburgh to hang tough.

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Teddy CoversFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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New Orleans vs. N.Y. JetsFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
Pick: N.Y. JetsFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Joe Public will be betting on the New Orleans Saints this week.  It’s easy to understand why.  The Saints are 6-1, their lone loss coming on a last second TD in New England.  New Orleans is coming off a 35-17 blowout against the Bills; a game in which Drew Brees looked brilliant, throwing for five TD’s.
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Meanwhile, the Jets are coming off a 40 point whipping at the hands of Cincinnati; the Bengals single biggest margin of victory in the Marvin Lewis era.  And Jets rookie QB Geno Smith is no Drew Brees; among the league leaders in both interceptions and sacks this year.  On paper, Smith facing an aggressive, blitz happy Rob Ryan defense without his best receiving weapons (Santonio Holmes is listed as ‘doubtful’ with his hamstring injury, and tight ends Jeff Cumberland and Kellen Winslow are ‘out’ ) is a complete mismatch.
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But games aren’t played on paper, and there’s a solid case to be made for New York besides a simple ‘fade the public’ contrarian approach.  The Saints offense isn’t the same animal once they leave their home dome; averaging just 23 points per game on the highway this year.  They’ve scored a grand total of six offensive touchdowns in those three games combined.  New Orleans still can’t run the football or stop the run.  Their -1.4 yards per carry differential between what they gain and what they allow ranks dead last in the NFL.
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The Jets strength is their running game and their defense; two attractive attributes for any home underdog.  They’ve bounced back strong following every previous defeat this season; a perfect 3-0 SU and ATS off a loss, including outright upsets over the Falcons and Patriots.  Coming off last week’s embarrassment, I’m expecting a strong effort here. And New Orleans could easily get caught looking ahead to Dallas and San Francisco in their next two ballgames.  For a squad that hasn’t won a road game by more than a single score all year, this pointspread looks more than a little lofty.

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Nick Parsons
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Kansas City vs. Buffalo
Pick: Buffalo
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Kansas City is without question this season's biggest surprise, sitting at 8-0 as we enter Week 9.
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As a "situational" capper, these are the types of "situations" that I keep my eyes open for, as this sets up as a "look ahead/let down" spot for the Chiefs.
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After two straight home games (an emotional 17-16 victory over the Texans two weeks ago and a somewhat lacklustre 23-17 win over the Browns last Sunday), Kansas City hits the road to face the lowly Bills. After Buffalo it then has its bye; this is a classic "look ahead" situation, especially with the Broncos on deck after its break.
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After their 35-17 loss at New Orleans last week, the Bills obviously have nothing to lose. But after two straight road games (a 23-21 win over the Fish two weeks ago), Buffalo has a big opportunity here to build on its already impressive 5-3 ATS record as an underdog this year and 4-0 ATS mark in front of the home town crowd.
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The Bills would hammer the Chiefs 35-17 in these teams lone matchup last year. The chances of a repeat performance of that magnitude are pretty slim, but the oddsmakers are agreeing with me that this is going to be a difficult one for Andy Reid and company.
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Great value on a super situational play. While the outright win isn't out of the question, I will in the recommend grabbing the points.

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Marc LawrenceFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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Kansas City Chiefs at Buffalo BillsFREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
Prediction: Buffalo BillsFOR FREE SERVlCE PLAYS VlSlT THESPREAD.COM
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So now it begins, as mandated by the 1972 Miami Dolphins. The official ?Kansas City fade? is now on as it?s time to pull out your Andy Reid voodoo dolls and root for the granddads. The 8-0 Chiefs take their perfect act to Buffalo while hoping to avoid in the inevitable? their first loss of the season. How likely is that to happen this Sunday? Not very, according to our research, given the fact that 7-0 or greater teams in the NFL are 11-1 SU in games against opponents off a loss of 17 or more points in its last game since 1980. Interestingly, though, these same teams are just 4-8 ATS in those same games, including 1-6 ATS away. Furthermore, the Featherheads are just 2-5 SU and 1-6 ATS away in games off a SU win but an ATS loss. Big news, however, supporting the old Dolphins? chant arrives in the form of KC's incredulous 1-13 SU mark of late against teams from the AFC East. Toss Buffie?s 5-1 SU and 6-0 ATS record in this series into the mix and just like that, the old-timers from Miami are happy campers once again. We recommend a 1-unit play on Buffalo.

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Kyle Hunter

Eagles vs. Raiders    
Play: Under 45

The Philadelphia Eagles offense clearly isn't in the same groove it was in earlier this year. Chip Kelly doesn't quite have the weapons he needs to make this system work in the NFL. The Oakland Raiders defense is much better than expected this year. Oakland has only had one game all year go above this posted total, and that was against the powerful Denver Broncos. The Eagles certainly aren't going to be mistaken for the Broncos anytime soon. Look for a lot of running that keeps the clock moving in this game. Take the under.

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