The NFL’s Week 11 schedule has some interesting games, with the Chargers heading to Green Bay to take on the slumping Packers, who are looking for more points. The Texans host Arizona in a much more interesting game in Week 11 now that C.J. Stroud is setting records and Kyler Murray is back for the Cardinals. We also have a rematch from opening night in the AFC East between the Jets and Bills.
We studied the OddsTrader computer picks and found 3 of our favorite bets that you can find at top-rated sportsbooks for Week 11.
- Texans -4 (-110)
- Chargers-Packers Over 44 Points (-110)
- Jets-Bills Under 40.5 (-110)
C.J. Stroud Continues Rolling vs. Cardinals
The Houston Texans (5-4) are right in the thick of the playoff race thanks to rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud, who looks poised beyond his years in leading back-to-back game-winning drives with over 350 passing yards in each game. Now he looks to notch a 3rd-straight win over an Arizona Cardinals team that welcomed back Kyler Murray for the first time in 11 months last week, and they came back to beat Atlanta 25-23.
The Texans are a 4-point home favorite with a total of 47.5 points. We are looking at the spread for the home team.
Sunday, November 19, 2023 – 01:00 PM ET at NRG Stadium
Stroud’s Historic Season
But in a down year for offenses with the defenses feasting on these quarterbacks, that makes what Stroud is doing as a rookie even more impressive. Forget the rookie class. Stroud is No. 2 in the whole NFL in passing yards (2,626) and No. 3 in yards per pass attempt (8.3). He has thrown 15 touchdowns to only 2 interceptions, and he just threw for over 350 yards on the road without his No. 1 wide receiver (Nico Collins).
Stroud is thriving right now, and the scary thing is there’s a lot more potential for growth. He had 3 turnovers in Cincinnati, including a pair of lost fumbles, or else he could have easily scored 40-plus points on the Bengals, one of the hottest teams in the league with a great defensive mind in Lou Anarumo.
With all the questionable quarterback play from the young players around the league, Stroud’s early play has been nothing short of remarkable. He could go down as the best rookie quarterback to ever play in the NFL.
The Cardinals Are Still Flawed
When the schedule came out, this looked like one of the games that Arizona may be able to win since Kyler Murray should be back by then. Well, that all has happened, but the Cardinals find themselves as a 4-point road underdog because of how well Stroud has been playing for a 5-4 Houston team that is surging under rookie coach DeMeco Ryans.
With Arizona, let’s not forget this team was projected to finish with the worst record and the No. 1 pick in the draft to land Caleb Williams. While Joshua Dobbs did a good enough job in Murray’s place, let’s not ignore that Dobbs has gone to Minnesota and immediately looked better in running a different offense with more talent around him.
The Cardinals do not have an embarrassing roster, but it is a flawed one. At least James Conner returned at running back last week, and tight end Trey McBride had a career-high 131 yards in Murray’s first game back.
But the defense lacks a good pass rush or talent in the secondary to deal with this suddenly deep receiving group for the Texans. Stroud is unlikely to turn it over at home so much like he did in Cincinnati. This is a tougher test all around as the Texans have a better roster than Arizona.
Arizona caught an Atlanta team that’s spiraling last week. The Cardinals have to play a Houston team on the road that is thriving this week. While it is true that Houston has only won by 5 points over the last 2 games despite Stroud’s amazing production, that should encourage you that things will be a wider margin this week.
The Texans just need to clean up the turnovers like they did early in the season, and they got the backup kicker situation sorted last week after having to try a bunch of 2-point conversions against Tampa Bay in Week 9.
This game could be a lot of fun if Kyler shows up for Arizona, but the truth is Stroud has looked better in this 9-game sample than Murray ever has for the Cardinals. We’ll take the shiny new thing to cover at home.
Score Prediction: Texans 27 – Cardinals 20
NFL Pick: Texans -4 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
Chargers to Help Green Bay End Scoring Drought?
The Los Angeles Chargers have played in a couple of the wildest shootouts of the season, and they lost them both at home. The latest was a 41-38 loss to the Lions where Justin Herbert and the offense looked fantastic, but Brandon Staley’s defense could not get any good stops in another loss.
Meanwhile, the Green Bay Packers (3-6) lost in Pittsburgh after a good start before fading away in the 4th quarter as Jordan Love threw 2 late interceptions. The Packers have not scored 21 points in their last 7 games, the team’s longest streak since a 10-game drought in 1990-91.
Is Staley’s defense the answer to ending Green Bay’s drought? The Packers are a 3-point home underdog with a total of 44 points. We are looking at the over.
Sunday, November 19, 2023 – 01:00 PM ET at Lambeau Field
Justin Herbert Let Down by Defense Again
You didn’t possibly expect the Chargers to have a defense based on playing the Bears and Jets, did you? Detroit came to town last week, and the typical problem with a Brandon Staley-coached defense emerged in that he makes great offenses look even stronger when they play the Chargers.
Detroit scored 41 points on a season-high 533 yards of offense, and the Lions did not turn the ball over once. They were so balanced too with Jared Goff passing for over 300 yards and the running game hitting 200 yards with David Montgomery and Jahmyr Gibbs working together the best they have all season with big plays and 3 touchdowns between them.
A good defense doesn’t have to make a great offense look terrible, but it sure shouldn’t be making them look even better than usual like we see with Staley and the Chargers too frequently.
It wasted another superb effort from Justin Herbert and Keenan Allen. In fact, the Chargers drove for long touchdown drives on each of their final 5 possessions, and yet they still never led once in the 41-38 loss.
Herbert gets the blame for bad turnovers in big spots, but in this game, he was money down the stretch. The problem is he kept matching scores with Goff as the defense just could not get a stop.
Story of Staley’s career.
Packers Are Close
For Green Bay, getting any production early in games has been a huge problem. But in Pittsburgh, another bad offense, the Packers looked like a competent offense early with Jordan Love throwing 2 touchdowns before halftime. Pittsburgh’s pass rush was not getting to him enough, and he successfully gambled on a few deep shots.
It looked like the Packers would easily score into the 20s in the game, but the 2nd half was a different story. The Packers were held to 2 field goals, they botched a well-designed trick play to start the 4th quarter in a 20-19 game, and then Love was intercepted twice in the red zone to end the game.
Christian Watson struggled again as he only caught 2 of 7 targets for 23 yards. He was also the target on both interceptions, though the first one saw tight coverage in the end zone, and veteran Patrick Peterson just made a Hall of Fame play by batting the ball to his teammate for a pick. It happens sometimes.
But Love at least showed some of his aggressive play can pay off with big gains to his other young receivers like Jayden Reed, Romeo Doubs, and tight end Luke Musgrave. This is an extremely young group of skill players in Green Bay, so it’s not like they tried replacing Aaron Rodgers with Love and a bunch of skilled veterans. This is a young passing game all around and right now it is a struggle.
That’s why it is a great thing to play the Chargers, who allow more production to wide receivers than most defenses, and the Chargers are still allowing a league-high 315.7 passing yards per game.
When we saw the computer score, it felt like a realistic ending for the Chargers, the king of losing 1-score games that are high-scoring. The data backs that up too. Since the Chargers drafted Herbert in 2020, their 19 losses in games where both teams scored at least 20 points are tied with Houston for the most in the league.
But rather than flirt with the spread and who gets the last-second score to win the game, we’ll just take the over and be happy about that. Remember, it’s the island games that don’t have any points this year. Sunday afternoon is for scoring, and this one should end Green Bay’s streak of not hitting 21 points.
Score Prediction: Packers 25 – Chargers 23
NFL Pick: Over 44 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
Bills to Even Series with Jets
The Buffalo Bills blew a Week 1 game against the Jets even after Aaron Rodgers tore his Achilles on the 4th snap of the night. The Bills turned the ball over 4 times and lost 22-16 in overtime after a punt was returned for a touchdown. The Jets have only reached 22 points one other time this season.
The Bills are a 7-point home favorite with a total of 40.5 points. We are all about that under here as Buffalo is not trustworthy for the spread these days.
Sunday, November 19, 2023 – 04:25 PM ET at Highmark Stadium
Week 1 Recap: Jets 22, Bills 16
It was one of the most emotional games of the season as the crowd looked on in horror as Aaron Rodgers went down just 4 plays into his first drive after an offseason of hype and hope. Sure enough, it was a torn Achilles, which the social media doctors feared right away.
The Jets still had a game to play, and some big runs by Breece Hall were the only offense they seemed to have with Zach Wilson, a failed 2021 draft pick by the team, taking over for Rodgers.
But even after the Bills led 13-3 at halftime, the Jets hung in there, Josh Allen was feeling charitable with the turnovers again, and before you knew it, Garrett Wilson was catching a huge touchdown in the 4th quarter to tie the game.
The Jets even got a fumbled snap from Allen and turned that into a go-ahead field goal before the Bills rebounded to force overtime with their own kick. But in overtime, the defense made Buffalo punt, and Xavier Gipson returned it 66 yards for a game-winning touchdown in a 22-16 win that shocked the NFL world.
Unfortunately, it might have been the high point of the season, because the Jets have been stuck with Wilson ever since, and only a few more minor miracles against the Broncos, Eagles and Giants have led to some more wins for this team.
Jets Cannot Find the End Zone
The Giants are still the worst offense in the NFL this year, but the Jets are at least in the conversation with Wilson as the quarterback. It shouldn’t be this case, but it is as they deal with an inconsistent running game and his indecisive, inaccurate play at the position.
The Jets should be running the ball better, but the line is not delivering for Breece Hall and Dalvin Cook, which would be an incredible duo to have on a team with a better line up front. Garrett Wilson is a legit No. 1 wide receiver, and tight end Tyler Conklin is more than serviceable. But Allen Lazard was a bad move to appease Rodgers in getting an ex-receiver from Green Bay to ease his transition to a new team. He has not produced for the Jets.
Wilson has passed for over 260 yards in back-to-back games but the Jets have not scored a touchdown in either loss to the Chargers or Raiders. That is a first in NFL history. Usually that many passing yards will lead to one touchdown drive at least, but that is not the case for Wilson in running Nathaniel Hackett’s offense, which was also the worst in the league in Denver last year before he was fired.
The Jets built a team for Rodgers, and he lasted 4 plays behind what looked like a shaky line. Now they are floundering with Wilson, who does not seem to be built for any NFL offense that is successful.
Which version of the Bills shows up? Hard to say right now. But the offense has been having bigger issues than the defense going back to the London trip. The offense could be held in check by this impressive pass rush and secondary for the Jets. A score like 24 points would be a great day for Buffalo here, and it may not even get to that.
But for the Jets, how much do you really count on them to score in this game? They had 16 in regulation last time at home and needed the punt return in overtime to win. They haven’t found the end zone in 11 quarters.
We’ll ignore the spread and take the under in this one.
Score Prediction: Bills 24 – Jets 14
NFL Pick: Under 40.5 (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
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