As the NFL season cleared the halfway point, Week 9's chaos reminded us that it's far from over. Potential Super Bowl contenders like the Cowboys, Rams and Bills provided us with just enough question marks to fill the upcoming weeks with intrigue. This appeared to be the season of the haves and have-nots. The league that prides itself on parity saw double-digit favorites covering over 70% of games throughout the first seven weeks.
Then suddenly over two weeks, everything changed. Regression came crashing in like a tidal wave. Double-digit favorites were 2-5, with the Jaguars and Broncos winning outright as two massive underdogs. Jacksonville was a lucrative +825 on the moneyline for those bettors who were brave enough to bet on a Bills letdown.
Timing is everything as each team experiences peaks and valleys during the season. As sports bettors, we are constantly looking for predictive indicators to allow us to get in front of the wave at just the right time. Whether it's injuries, travel situations, or on-the-field mismatches, when you see an edge you better take advantage before it's gone. Here are three games that were too good for me to pass up in Week 10.
Buffalo (-13) at New York Jets
The Bills' 9-6 loss to Jacksonville was the most shocking result of the season. The futile offensive effort was a head-scratcher, but the Jets defense is the perfect remedy. New York is coming off a 45-30 loss to the Colts where they allowed 8.7 yards per play as its defense continues to spiral with no end in sight. Jets opponents are averaging 44.3 points over the past three weeks. Buffalo is coming off a sloppy loss where they racked up 12 penalties and three turnovers. I expect to see a refocused Bills team that is far superior to their opponent.
It's the matchup between Buffalo's league-leading defense and the Jets' bottom-five offense that makes this bet so appealing. The Bills have held opponents to only 14.8 points per game this season and rank No.1 in yards per play allowed, EPA per play allowed, and defensive success rate.
Nobody likes laying double-digits on the road, but Buffalo has covered as 9, 14.5 and 19-point favorites this season. Their 14.6 average margin of victory is the league's highest. It's a crazy season when I am buying low with the Bills by laying 13 points, but it's a bet I can't walk away from.
Seattle (+4) at Green Bay
Jordan Love stumbled through the backdoor in Kansas City to ensure the Packers covered for the eighth consecutive week. Green Bay's 8-1 ATS record has caught the eye of sports bettors but don't bank on that winning percentage to continue.
Now is the perfect time to start paddling towards the wave of regression. The Packers' offense hasn't scored over 25 points in five weeks and now faces the Seahawks with Russell Wilson set to return. Seattle has scored 28 or more in three of the four games Wilson has finished this season. I am not buying a Packers defense that is 26th in defensive success rate. Give me Russell Wilson as an underdog of three or more.
Philadelphia at Denver (Over 45)
The word is out on the Philly defense. The Eagles allowed another QB to complete over 80% of his passes on Sunday. Defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon is under fire as his unit remains the only team in the NFL that has allowed opposing QBs to complete an average of over 75% of their passes on the season. Teddy Bridgewater should have no problem dissecting the Philly secondary, which saw two key pieces exit last week's game with injuries. Avonte Maddox returned but Darius Slay's hamstring could keep him out versus the Broncos.
Denver's star rookie cornerback, Patrick Surtain could miss Sunday's game with a knee strain as well. The Eagles' are 3-0 to the over in the last three weeks and their games have averaged a combined score of 54.1 points since Week 3. With both defenses nursing injuries in the secondary and outside of the top 20 in success rate against the run, the offenses should be able to take advantage. This one may not fill up the highlight reel, but it will fill up your pockets if you are on the over.