Our top NFL picks shook off the Week 3 loss by Green Bay and bounced back with a winner in Week 4. NFL best bets have a 3-2 record this season and for Sunday’s NFL lineup we have sports betting information and previews for the Ravens at Chiefs, Packers at Colts and Broncos at Patriots.
Last year, on the road against non-divisional teams the Ravens scored 17 points or less in four of five games
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NFL BEST BETS – RAVENS AT CHIEFS
Kansas City gave the ball away six times in last week’s loss to San Diego and should put an emphasis on protecting the football. Baltimore only turned the ball over once in last week’s home win over Cleveland and ranks as one of the stingiest offenses so the Chiefs can’t be expecting any gifts.
Baltimore has scored a lot of points this season but three of their games were at home, where they’ve scored an average 4.5 PPG more the past four seasons under HC Harbaugh and allowed 5.1 PPG fewer than on the road (26.0/21.5 for and 13.8/18.9 against).
Last year, on the road against non-divisional teams the Ravens scored 17 points or less in four of five games. Their playoff road game at New England stayed under and they scored 20 points. This year at Philadelphia the Ravens scored 23 points.
Since Wk 1, 2011 the Ravens are 1-6 SU away from home vs. non-divisional teams so they are obviously not happy about that (18.7 for, 21.1 PPG against). The solution is to play more like “home” and get up for games the way they do against divisional foes. Easier said than done, but this is a good spot for the Ravens. They have Dallas on-deck at home, they don’t have to worry about AFC North games until Week 9, which is immediately following their bye week, and the Ravens come into this game with extra prep time since beating the Browns on Thursday Night NFL betting.
The Panthers and Giants were both on the road in Week 4 following a Thursday night game the previous week. Carolina went over, New York stayed well under and since Week 13, 2011 road teams off a Thursday or Wednesday nighter have played 3 overs and 11 unders (avg total 44 points; avg score 39 points). When the road team is favored they are 1-4 O/U and non-divisional games are 1-7 O/U, staying under the number by almost 7 PPG.
KC has a non-Conference road game at TB on-deck but let’s be honest, the only positive for KC this year has been a stunning fourth quarter comeback in Week 3 at New Orleans. Romeo Crennel’s team better not be looking past anything right now or Gen. Mgr. Scott Pioli will soon find himself looking for a new head coach.
Speaking of coaches, the straight-up and ATS records for coaches in their first and second year with a team seems to follow a logical progression but what about coaches like Crennel, who are in their first full-time stint with a club but they’ve already tested the pro waters with another club.
First-year, true rookie head coaches like Pagano (now Arians), Carmichael (soon to be Vitt), Philbin, Schiano and Allen are 3-14 SU (18-percent) and 7-10 ATS (41-percent).
Second-year coaches, and there are plenty of them in 2011, are 11-15 SU (42-percent) and 12-13-1 ATS (48-percent).
First-year vets like Crennel, along with the Rams’ Jeff Fisher and Jacksonville’s Mike Mularkey are leading the pack with a 5-8 record straight-up (38-percent) and 7-6 mark ATS (54-percent) that includes St. Louis’ Thursday night win over Arizona.
Our first play is on the Ravens and Chiefs to stay “Under” 47 points.
NFL PICKS – PACKER AT COLTS
The first round of 2012 bye week teams was Indianapolis and Pittsburgh. Early bye week teams enjoyed a tremendous run following league realignment in 2002 but in the past couple years it seems like books have caught on.
From 2002-2009, the post-bye record for the first round of teams was 22-9 ATS (71-percent) but in 2010 they were just 1-3 SU and all four lost against the spread. It didn’t get much better in 2011, with Cleveland, Dallas, St. Louis, Miami, Washington and Baltimore posting a 1-5 SU, 2-4 ATS record.
With a 2-8 SU/ATS record since 2010, the overall record since 2002 has dropped below 60-percent for the first time at 24-17 ATS (59-percent), but there is a new trend worth tracking for totals.
– Since 2007, the first round of ‘breakers’ have posted 8 overs and 15 unders following the bye including six of six unders in 2011.
We lean to the “Under” in this contest but our Best Bet is on the Packers -7 points or less. To make it a three pack, we’re also suggesting a play on the Broncos +7 points in Peyton Manning’s return to Foxboro.
Week 5 NFL Best Bets: Take the Ravens-Chiefs “Under” 47, the Packers -7 and the Broncos +7