Table of Contents
By Alex Lauzon from the “Course of Life” podcast
Week 5 – Let’s keep the good times (and the winners) rolling!
Week 5 – Setting The Scene
We’re in the thick of football season with London games underway, and with the season
changing reality is setting in for lots of NFL teams. We’re starting to part and parcel
pretenders from contenders, and injuries to several QB’s across the league have forced
teams to get creative and desperate rather early in the fall calendar. In the AFC we still
know that everything goes through Mahomes or Josh Allen and others may have a say.
In the NFC, teams like the defending champion Rams, Bucs and Packers all look a lot
more beat-able than last season.
Are my picks for real for real? Is Bailey Zappe the next Tom Brady? These are the
important questions in my brain. With that, let’s set the stage for week 5.
Thursday Night Kickoff
Broncos (-3.5) vs Colts – Russell Wilson’s start in Denver has been suspiciously
strange, but you have to feel like this is a good spot at home for him to get right. The
offense warmed up last week in Vegas, but TNF games tend to be choppy at best
(Extra) Early Slate
Packers (-8) vs. Giants – This week’s London top of the morning game features an
Aaron Rodgers team that snuck past the injury riddled Patriots, and a Giants team that
has surprisingly surged to 3-1. There’s QB questions on Daniel Jones’ health this week,
which makes it hard to think the Giants are competitive with anything but their starter.
Bills (-14) vs Steelers – Pittsburgh officially handed the keys over to Rookie Kenny
Pickett in last week’s loss vs the Jets. Now he gets sent out to slaughter against a
sturdy Buffalo defense that’s ready to play. Can they hang within two scores in the
biggest point spread of this young NFL season?
Dolphins (-3) vs Jets – A meaningful AFC east duel with no mention of the New England
Patriots. Both these teams appear to be gaining ground on the Bills and will butt heads
in what’s sure to be a slugfest. I would lean on the under here with division foes that
know each other well – and an especially improved Jets defense and Tua out for Miami.
Cowboys @ Rams – The early week lines did not arrive on time because of question
marks for Dallas. Does the red hot 4-0 Cooper Rush stay in at QB if Dak is ready to go?
Do the Rams have a statement game upcoming to protect their championship throne?
All will be answered in front of what is likely a Cowboys home crowd in LA.
Eagles (-5) @ Cardinals – The lone unbeaten remaining through four weeks is Philly, led
by a fierce front seven and a matured Jalen Hurts at QB that seems to be making all the
right moves. This game is a tough spot because on one hand you’re wondering when
the Eagles first loss comes (and want to be there to bet on it), but the Cards play
suspiciously poor at home as of late.
Night Pick of the Week
Ravens (-3) vs Bengals – Sunday Night football dishes out a primetime QB matchup
between Lamar Jackson and Joe Burrow – two uniquely awesome brands of
quarterbacking on display. The over/under is set at 48.5 so expect fireworks!
The “Who Cares?” Game
Back to the old reliable – the AFC South. It’s gotta be the still winless Texans taking on
the Jaguars. While the Jags are notably improved, the regression to the mean is
inevitable and Houston even stands a chance to knock them off. Two teams that aren’t
quite there yet, this matchup will be primetime viewing…in 2 or 3 seasons.
Weird Vibe Prediction of the Week
Just like over yonder in my CFB previews, and like you’ve seen here all season, my
weird vibe radar is unprecedented in its accuracy. Last week I knew a shootout would
break out in Vegas and it did, covering the over 45.5 with ease by the 4th quarter. This
week, the weird vibe is at Arrowhead. The Chiefs are rolling and they are particularly
dominant at home, but one team that has given them headaches in recent years – their
Monday night opponent in the Raiders. Las Vegas keeps it close because Josh
McDaniels knows how to carve up the KC defense, and they may even pick off the
Chiefs at home.
Week 4 Recap
Always nice to follow up a 4-1 week with a 3-2 week. The trends we’re on have
consistency, and the path to winners is clear for the time being. While the Saints
couldn’t cover by half a point and the Jags/Eagles refused to stay under (stubbornly),
the card played out nicely in the end. Chargers -5 was a solid winner, the Vegas
shootout happened over time and the 49ers looked great against the Rams like they
always do. Chalk up a positive unit week.
Week Two: 3-2 ATS, Season Overall: 14-8 ATS
Week 5 NFL Plays For Alex
To start off, I’m always the first guy in line for the “it’s too many points” game. Have to
hang my hat on Steelers +14.5 here.
It might not be pretty when it’s done and over with, but I do like this spot for my Patriots,
so I’ll grab Patriots -3 at home when they need a win the most vs the lowly Lions.
A west coast team travels east and plays an early game, so I must pursue. The
Chargers/Browns will start out slow and go Under 48 points total.
Let’s keep betting on poor NFL teams – I like the Texans +7.5 to keep it close in
Jacksonville, because this is the backwards nature of the NFL.
I don’t think you can set the total high enough in Ravens/Bengals, so I’ll go ahead and
grab Over 48 now before it gets to 50 this weekend.
Other leans: Raiders +7, Titans/Commanders Over 42.5
Eats And Deets
The best crowd: I have a feeling that a tailgate + game day for Cowboys vs Rams
in Inglewood could get a little rowdy. Jerryworld 2.0 incoming in Los Angeles.
Goofiest line: Bills -14 vs Steelers – too many points?
Simultaneous screen count: Three screen SZN is here – are you a Siciliano or
Tailgate pick of the week: This Sunday is International Pizza and Beer day. I don’t
believe in food holidays but I do believe in divine intervention.