The theme of this week is all about resiliency. The definition of resiliency states,” the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness.” During this football season, specific teams will be hit with injuries and losing streaks, but teams usually rise to win or at least cover spreads in critical matchups.
One team that embodies the word resiliency is the New York Giants. They have been dealt tough hands due to injuries to the offensive line, inconsistent QB play at times, and some of their key receivers like Wan’Dale Robinson and Kenny Golladay have been hurt. They also just traded away Kadarius Toney to the Chiefs. Yet here they are at 7-2, spearheaded in my opinion, by the coach of the year Brian Daboll. They also are 7-2 against the spread this year as well.
Another example of resiliency has been the Kansas City Chiefs. After losing Tyreek Hill via trade to the Dolphins people were writing them off at the start of the season. Ever resilient, they managed to have the best record in the AFC with Patrick Mahomes playing at an MVP level. The Chiefs have weathered the storm of injuries on both sides of the ball this year by putting up the second most yards in the league. They just suffered injuries to Juju Smith-Schuester and Micole Hardman, yet this team still is a well-oiled Super Bowl contender that you do not want to mess with come playoff time.
The best part of the NFL is that when a team is a heavy underdog due to injuries or a matchup disadvantage, the underdog tends to surprise you. This is all a part of what makes a team resilient.
A quote from Rocky Balboa from Rocky VI says a line that very well sits with NFL teams and is a great life motto I take to this day, “It ain’t about how hard you hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” Hopefully, that pumps you up to make your bets so let’s jump into this week’s picks.
All betting lines are courtesy of Circa Sports. (Reserve a seat at the Circa Sportsbook or Stadium Swim.)
Bengals (-4) at Steelers Over/Under 40.5
This is our lock of the week. We love the Bengals in week 11 despite being heavy favorites. They are fresh off of a bye and since week six, they have been the highest scoring offense in the league. I don’t mean to make this pick too simple, but one quarterback in Joe Burrow has been rock solid with the second best completion percentage in the league with an 18 touchdowns and just six intereceptions. The other quarterback in Kenny Pickett has only two touchdowns and eight interceptions. Sheesh. The Steelers are ranked 28th in total offense and with the inconsistent QB play, this could be a game where the Bengals could get after this very weak offense. I like Bengals to cover in this win.
Our pick: Bengals -4
Cowboys (-1.5) at Vikings Over/Under 47.5
I will ride with America’s Team (sorry, Russ, I am not riding with Broncos Country) for this week. What I like about this Cowboys offense is that they have had back-to-back weeks with 400 yards. Who needs Zeke when you have Tony Pollard. We all know how great the Cowboys defense has been. Top five in points per game allowed, fourth in yards allowed, and they generate the most sacks out of any team in the league. Kirk Cousins historically against the Cowboys has been pathetic at 2-8 for his career against Dallas. Both teams are coming off of overtime games but with different results. The Vikings are coming off of an emotional win against the Buffalo Bills, and the Cowboys are coming off of a tough overtime loss against the Green Bay Packers. The more desperate team I can see ready to come out more aggressive and to get a much needed road win. This is the time for Dak Prescott to put this unnecessary QB controversy to rest and to win a much needed game on the road and he will continue the Cowboys dominance at Minnesota for winning at Minneapolis for the third straight year.
Our pick: Cowboys-1.5
Raiders at Broncos (-3) Over/Under 41.5
Yes, I am back. The overconfident underachieving Raiders bettor is back. However, I actually have a good feeling about this one for the most talented 2-7 team ever. The Raiders on offense have been the opposite of a problem, Carr and Adams have been on point together. Davante Adams has had back to back 100-yard receiving games. Last time these two teams played, Josh Jacobs torched these same Broncos on the ground with 144 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Whose to say he can’t do it again? The Denver Broncos offense has been abysmal this year. They are dead last in total offense this year and Jerry Jeudy being out doesn’t help their cause. This might be the last time I pick the Raiders with these blog posts but I am gonna roll the dice one more time.
Our pick: Raiders +3
Chiefs (-5.5) at Chargers Over/Under 51
This game is honestly a tough call to pick who wins, but it’s not a tough call for me to pick the Chargers to cover. The Chargers typically tend to rise to the challenge of playing against the Chiefs and each game has been decided by one possession and the Chargers are surprisingly getting healthier. Keenan Allen and Mike Williams are coming back. Herbert has played well in his matchup against Mahomes. 13TD to Three INT’s. The Chiefs offense os depleted right now with no Smith-Schuester and no Micole Hardman. If you look into the economics there is one team playing for their playoff lives at home getting healthier on offense and another team getting less healthier with injuries on both sides of the ball. I am going to take the Chargers to cover in this one.
Our pick: Chargers+5