So close, and yet so far. We almost had another perfect 3-0 sweep for our Week 6 Upset Alert, but Denver (+210) blew it in overtime versus the L.A. Chargers, and Kansas City (+130) couldn’t hold onto their late lead over Buffalo.
Good thing the New York Giants (+215) cashed in again for us. They beat Baltimore 24-20 to make it six straight profitable weeks of NFL picks to start the season.
We’re definitely sticking with the G-Men for Week 7, but we’ve got two other dogs who figure to have a bit more betting value on the moneyline.
Sunday, October 23, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at M&T Bank Stadium
This pick has as much to do with the 3-3 Ravens as it does the 2-4 Browns. Everything went according to script for us last week; Baltimore had a 10-point lead in the fourth quarter, then QB Lamar Jackson had his trademark issues with vapor lock, turning the ball over twice and allowing Big Blue to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.
Do the Browns have what it takes to do the same? From an efficiency perspective, they’re slightly worse than New York on paper, checking in three spots lower at No. 21 overall (No. 8 offense, No. 31 defense) on the Week 7 DVOA charts at Football Outsiders.
And that’s with Jacoby Brissett at quarterback. This was supposed to be Cleveland’s weak point with Deshaun Watson suspended for the first 11 games, but Brissett has held his own. He’s No. 16 in passing DVOA, acceptably league-average at his position, and Brissett’s scrambling leaves him fifth in rushing DVOA.
Why the Browns?
The Browns defense obviously isn’t doing its part, but then again, neither is Baltimore’s.
They’re No. 16 overall in defensive DVOA, and No. 24 against the run, so let’s see if Nick Chubb (5.9 yards per carry) can do what Saquon Barkley did last week and carve up these Ravens for a tasty payday.
NFL Pick: Browns ML (+230) at SBK
Sunday, October 23, 2022 – 04:25 PM EDT at Levi’s Stadium
This is eerily similar to last week’s Buffalo-Kansas City matchup, with the Niners playing the role this time as small home dogs. Everything we said about K.C. still holds true this week, except they’re 4-2 now instead of 4-1, and they’ve moved up from eighth to seventh place on the DVOA charts despite losing to the Bills.
What we didn’t get into last week was how poor their defense is. Kansas City ranks No. 28 in defensive efficiency, making them look more like one of those almost-elite teams they had before finally addressing that weakness and winning Super Bowl LIV.
Oh yeah, that was against San Francisco. You can bet your sweet patootie that the 3-3 Niners (No. 5 on the DVOA charts) will be up for this battle, even if their own defense has once again been cut down by injuries.
Why the 49ers?
It’s almost criminal how little casual fans think of QB Jimmy Garoppolo. He’s No. 3 in passing DVOA right now, one spot ahead of Kansas City QB and former MVP Patrick Mahomes.
Let the revenge begin.
NFL Pick: 49ers ML (+138) at SBK
Sunday, October 23, 2022 – 01:00 PM EDT at TIAA Bank Field
We know by now what we’re going to get with the 5-1 Giants. It’s definitely harder to pin down the 2-4 Jaguars, who were on our Upset list earlier this year after getting off to a quick start. The analytics (if you’re into that) still have Jacksonville at No. 8 in efficiency despite three straight losses, each by a converted touchdown.
Ominously enough, the Jaguars have faced one of the softest schedules in the NFL thus far. Their last two games were against two of the league’s weakest teams in Houston and Indianapolis – and yes, we had the Texans in our Week 5 Upset Alert picks.
Why the Giants… Again?
Trevor Lawrence needs to protect the ball better. He’s No. 10 in passing DVOA, one spot ahead of Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson, and it seems he’s got the same propensity for causing damage to his own team.
To be fair, Lawrence could use some help from his offensive line, which ranks No. 21 in adjusted Sack Rate and No. 30 in adjusted Line Yards. This is exactly what old-school handicappers are looking for when they make their football picks, and one of the bigger reasons we’re sticking with Big Blue in Week 7. Bet accordingly.
NFL Pick: Giants ML (+140) at BetMGM