NFL Week 7 – Best Bets Against the Spread
We split the picks in last week’s article, going 2-2. Well, on it is to Week 7. Hopefully, we can hit .500 or better this week. As always, check back later in the week on our free picks page, for picks on the Sunday Night and Monday Night Football games.
As always, I hope you win with these picks (and any others you make), but be sure to line shop for the best price. Prices are accurate as of this writing using BetOnline.ag’s odds, but they’re likely going to change from this posting.
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Oakland Raiders at Jacksonville Jaguars -1 Total: 47
The Raiders come off of their second loss of the season to the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead last week, losing 26-10. The loss puts their record at 4-2 on the season, but they are still tied for first in the AFC West with the Broncos. The defeat was their first in their last three games.
While Oakland has capitalized on their hype in the preseason, the Jaguars have not. Jacksonville started their season with three straight losses. However, they have looked better as of late (albeit against inferior opponents) winning their last two games against the Colts and Bears. They’re record now sits at 2-3 after a come from behind victory at Chicago last week to win 17-16.
Jacksonville opened up as -1 favorites in this game. The odds haven’t moved much from there despite over 80 percent of wagers coming in on the visiting Raiders. The line has not gone the other direction (reverse line movement), but the odds also haven’t moved either.
After their loss at KC, the Raiders traveled back to Oakland and headed across the country to take on Jacksonville. West coast teams typically don’t perform on cross country trips, but not only that, this is an excellent matchup for Jacksonville.
In contrast to years past, the Jaguars defense has been much better against the pass this season, and considerably worse against the run. The Raiders haven’t been able to get their ground game going all year and will likely go to the air.
It’s also worth keeping in mind the Raiders have one of the NFL’s worst defenses through the first six weeks of the season. Bortles is a turnover prone passer, but when he gets it going, the Jaguars can put up major points. I expect them to do so in this spot.
Pick: Jaguars -1
New England Patriots at Pittsburgh Steelers +7 Total: 47.5
The Patriots travel to Pittsburgh at just the right time. In last week’s game, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger tore a meniscus in his left knee. Big Ben went under the knife this past week and is expected to be out at least a month.
Starting for Ben will be quarterback Landry Jones who has been with the team since the 2013 season. Jones hasn’t done much in limited action but has been in the same system for several years. Wide receiver Antonio Brown has talked up Jones, stating they have a much better connection compared to last season.
The situation with the betting line is the same as above Jaguars’ game. The odds opened with the Patriots -7 on the road, and that is where the odds stand at most sportsbooks. However, betting action has been incredibly lopsided. Nearly 90 percent of all wagers are coming in on the Patriots, but the odds haven’t moved off the key number in either direction.
New England is running on all cylinders with Tom Brady back. Even with him out of the lineup, they only lost one game. They defeated the Bengals 35-17 last week at Foxboro, and they have a stranglehold on the AFC East with a 5-1 record.
On paper, this seems like a Patriots beat down, but let’s look closer.
Pittsburgh plays much better at home. They still have an incredibly talented offense. Landry Jones is likely to be underestimated by the public. Linebacker Ryan Shazier will also return to the lineup, which will be key, as he’s easily their best linebacker in coverage.
This is a much better spot for Pittsburgh than last week, but a tougher opponent. However, they are getting a touchdown or more in some places. I have no issues taking the +7, but if you can get +7.5 or +8 at a reasonable price – jump on it.
Pick: Steelers +7
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at San Francisco +1 Total: 46.5
The Buccaneers head out to San Francisco to take on the 49ers at Levi Stadium. Tampa Bay is coming off a bye, with their last action in Week 5 against the Carolina Panthers. They won that game 17-14 and come into this one with a 2-3 record, which is second in the NFC South.
San Francisco started the season with a win against the Rams, but haven’t won a single game since. Their record fell to 1-5 after losing 45-16 at Buffalo last week. They’ve been notoriously bad on the road the last few years.
Both sides have some injury concerns. Running backs Doug Martin and Charles Sims will be both be out this week, pushing veteran Jacquizz Rodgers into another starting role. Running back Carlos Hyde will also be out for the 49ers and wide receiver Torrey Smith is questionable.
The Buccaneers opened as -2.5 favorites. Betting action has been split between the two teams. The odds have moved to Tampa -1 at most sportsbooks since opening.
The 49ers are not a good football team, but they have always gotten up for home games and played much better defensively over the past few years. Tampa Bay is also a terrible defensive team.
Their game before the bye was easily their best defensive performance of the season, but let’s keep in mind they faced backup quarterback Derek Anderson and not Cam Newton. In previous matchups, they held only the Denver Broncos to under 30 points.
No one feels good about placing a bet on Colin Kaepernick, but his running ability should help the offense and not hurt it. He’s got one of the best matchups of the week. No one has respect for this 49ers defense, but they’re a much better squad at home.
Pick: 49ers +1
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans -3 Total: 47.5
After an offseason of hype, the Colts came into the season with high expectations, particularly with how poor the AFC South is overall. It’s Week 7, and they’re playing way under expectations.
Last week, they held the lead for the most of the game against the Texans, but Houston rallied late to force overtime. The Texans stopped the Colts on their first possession and kicked a field goal to win the game on next drive 26-23. The loss dropped the Colts to 2-4 on the season and last place in the AFC South.
I am not a fan of the Titans organization or their offensive coaching staff, but they have played better in recent weeks. Last week, they beat the Browns by a score of 28-26 to improve their record to 3-3 and leapfrog the Colts in the AFC South.
The odds on this game opened with the Titans as -2 favorites and the odds have made the significant move to Titans -3. Betting action between the two sides has been relatively even, with a slight edge to Tennessee.
The Titans are the far better team, but they’re also the much healthier team as well. The Colts are missing their starting tight end in Dwayne Allen and starting wide receiver in Phillip Dorsett. They also lost their starting left guard in what has become a makeshift offensive line.
Tennessee’s defense is their best attribute, led by the ageless Dick LeBeau. Their offense is rather vanilla compared to the rest of the league, but that shouldn’t matter against Indianapolis. The Colts defense may be the worst in the league, and they have also suffered several injuries.
Lay the points with confidence.
Pick: Colts -3