On the heels of last week’s hugely successful Polar Vortex edition of Against The Spread we bring you the even harsher Lake Effect version.
If you happen to be hunkered down in a western New York snow cave while reading this, don’t fear. Not only do I bring you successful picks, but also the best FanDuel plays for Week 12.
You might as well make a profit if cooped up inside. By the way my winning percentage for the year equals that of both World Series participants.
Week 11 record: 7-7
Season record: 88-72-1
Kansas City Chiefs (7-3) -7 at Oakland Raiders (0-10)
Veteran defensive lineman Antonio Smith is becoming the NFL’s answer to Anthony Young. He played for the Houston Texans during their season-ending 14-game losing streak last year and is now 0-10 in Oakland. If the Raiders run the table, Smith could end his career going 0-30. The only thing worse for Smith would be being declared inactive for a game the Raiders end up winning. Another fun fact: The Raiders and Philadelphia 76ers both won championships in 1983. Neither franchise has done so since and their combined record as I write this is 0-21.
ATS pick: Chiefs
Cleveland Browns (6-4) +3 at Atlanta Falcons (4-6)
The Browns currently look like a team that plays better on the road than at home, so this game sets up well. Josh Gordon makes his season debut this week, and is promising to “tear the league up.” Gordon draws a tough assignment against Desmond Trufant, but should be a nice FanDuel play at $7,800. Brian Hoyer at $7,000 is also an option with his upgraded weaponry.
ATS pick: Browns
New York Jets (2-8) at Buffalo Bills (5-5)
Scheduled for 7 p.m. ET Monday night at Ford Field in Detroit. This game has been taken off many boards due to the change of venue and circumstances of the relocated game.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-8) +6 at Chicago Bears (4-6)
Everyone, but me had Robert Griffin III feasting on Tampa’s secondary last week. Under that premise, Jay Cutler may be an option at $8,800. Bucs running back Charles Sims is seeing an increased work load and his FD price definitely works at $4,900, while rookie wide receiver Mike Evans ($8,400) is as hot as anyone right now.
ATS pick: Buccaneers
Jacksonville Jaguars (1-9) +14 at Indianapolis Colts (6-4)
I would load up on Colts for FanDuel this week, where you can combo Andrew Luck ($10,300) with T.Y. Hilton ($8,500) and Coby Fleener ($5,000) who is a top 10 tight end play with Dwayne Allen out.
ATS pick: Colts
Green Bay Packers (7-3) -9.5 at Minnesota Vikings (4-6)
Aaron Rodgers, Eddie Lacy and others made plenty of money for those in daily games last week. I wouldn’t blame anyone to keep rolling with those players if you can fit them in. But I’m worried about this being a trap game for Green Bay with the “Super Bowl Preview” against New England looming next week. Mason Crosby ($4,900) would be a FD kicker option except extra points suddenly became a challenge last week.
ATS pick: Vikings
Detroit Lions (7-3) +7 at New England Patriots (8-2)
Would the trap game theory also figure for New England? After a 44 point, 4 touchdown performance Sunday night, Jonas Gray ($6,700) would sound like a pick for daily games except there is a chance James White or someone else on the practice squad ends up earning their varsity letters instead.
ATS pick: Patriots
Tennessee Titans (2-8) +11 at Philadelphia Eagles (7-3)
Jordan Matthews is no longer a bargain in daily games, his salary on FanDuel jumps from $5,500 to $7,700 this week. Although throttled at Lambeau last week, Matthews, LeSean McCoy and Mark Sanchez did rack up points in garbage time as coach Chip Kelly elected to keep his starters in.
ATS pick: Titans
Cincinnati Bengals (6-3-1) +1.5 at Houston Texans (5-5)
Two defenses stand above the rest in daily games this week. I would take a defense with both J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney on the D-line. Look for Houston to continue to climb further into the playoff race.
ATS pick: Texans
St. Louis Rams (4-6) +4.5 at San Diego Chargers (6-4)
In the past month the Rams have knocked off the Seahawks, 49ers and Broncos. Clearly they have not been an easy out. There are two good daily game running backs in this game, Ryan Mathews goes off on FD at $6,400 but Tre Mason is an even better value at $5,600.
ATS pick: Rams
Arizona Cardinals (9-1) +6.5 at Seattle Seahawks (6-4)
Despite defeating the Cowboys, Lions and 49ers among others on its way to the NFL’s best record, the Cardinals still feel disrespected by the media and oddsmakers. A simple rule for this game is to go with the team who needs the win more, and the Seahawks fit that category, especially with a Thanksgiving trip to San Francisco just four days later. The Seahawks defense ($5,000) is a great value pick this week.
ATS pick: Seahawks
Miami Dolphins (6-4) +7 at Denver Broncos (7-3)
After a bad game in St. Louis, Peyton Manning ($9,900) comes in slightly cheaper than Aaron Rodgers or Andrew Luck this week. The Dolphins defense is not a bargain but weather should not be a factor.
ATS pick: Broncos
Washington (3-7) +9 at San Francisco 49ers (6-4)
The media vultures continue to circle around Robert Griffin III and this week is not a good spot since the 49ers, like the Seahawks, can not afford to lose.
ATS pick: 49ers
Dallas Cowboys (7-3) -3.5 at New York Giants (3-7)
This is the NFL’s version of Yankees vs. Red Sox, it will air on Sunday night regardless of the teams’ records.
ATS pick: Cowboys
Baltimore Ravens (6-4) +3.5 at New Orleans Saints (4-6)
Like the 49ers a few weeks back, the Ravens return to the site of Super Bowl XLVII. The Ravens also traveled to New Orleans for an exhibition game in 2005, the last NFL contest at the Superdome before Hurricane Katrina struck.
ATS pick: Saints