I went 0-5 last week. Easily my worst betting week of my life. Thankfully, I didn’t lose a shitload of real money. And once again, fuck the Eagles. Carson Wentz is nice, tho.
Tucci’s record 3-7 ATS, -8 units
Houston -1.5 at Patriots, 1 unit
This is one of the few interesting Thursday games on the slate thanks to the ascendance of the Texans, who may finally possess an offense that can beat one of Belichick’s defenses, which casually shut down the Texans last season, 29-6. Belichick, known for phasing out his opponents best weapons, held Deandre Hopkins to just 3 catches for 52 yards. Oh, and Hopkins was the Texans’ leading WR that game. Yikes. It’s 2016, however, and things change. Houston now has a multi-threat offense in Hopkins and rookie Will Fuller, who has some of the worst hands in the game, but possesses what seems to be Olympic-level speed (he did run a 4.33 40 time). Don’t forget the very dangerous RB Lamar Miller, giving Houston a versatile offense.
The Pats are down to their third string QB, a rookie, Jacoby Brissett, who looked, well, like a rookie last week against Miami. That was a lot of commas. Whoa. I expect a very stout Texan defense to hold New England to a bunch of checkdowns and scrambles from Brissett all game. It wouldn’t shock me if the Texans won by 6.
Broncos +3.5 at Bengals, 1 unit
You gotta love taking this team when it gets points, every time. The defense has returned to form and looks as dominant as ever. Cincy’s offense has looked “meh” this year against mediocre defenses. While the Bengals generally field a stingy defense, it has been less than stellar against the run through two games, allowing opponents a league-high 276 rushing yards. To Denver’s ears, that’s money, as C.J. Anderson has ran all over the opposition so far this season, to the tune of 166 rushing yards to go with 66 receiving yards and three total touchdowns. Denver’s run game is stronger than anything Cincy does offensively, and I don’t think the road crowd will get to a poised Trevor Siemian. Broncos in a close one.
Rams +6 at Buccaneers, 1 units
The Rams defense is legit as it proved last week in a win against the Seahawks in which no touchdowns were scored. Todd Gurley is due for a big game after rushing for just 98 yards (25th in the league) on 36 attempts (9th most). Not good, Bob. I expect the Rams to make this a low-ish scoring trudge with the possibility of an upset for the second week in a row. You’ve seen the highs of Jameis against a bad defense, and we’ve seen the lows against a good defense last week, when Winston coughed up the ball an astounding five times (four INTs, one fumble). This Bucs offense is high variance, but not historically great against the Rams. The Bucs haven’t gotten a W against Tampa since 2010 (they’ve lost four straight since), so its possible that the Rams are just a thorn in the Bucs side, akin to the Rams’ relationship with the Seahawks.
Steelers -4 at Eagles, 2 units
Yes, I’m risking another pair of units against the fucking Eagles, who have made me looking like a complete dumbass so far. I have underestimated them enough into a fairly favorable spread against a team that will easily be the best opponent yet. Carson Wentz has shown a shit load of promise through his first two starts, albeit against lower end teams like the Browns and Bears. While the Steelers defense is not dominant by any means, it will still be the most well coached of the three by far and should make Wentz’s day a bit harder than his previous opponents have. On the other side of the ball, Pittsburgh deploys one of the most explosive incomplete offenses ever, led by the NFL’s leading rusher and backup of the year, DeAngelo Williams and the best WR in the league, Toni Brown. I see this being a shootout, but Wentz’s lack of experience has the Eagles falling short by a touchdown or two.
Bears +7 at Cowboys, 1 unit
Yeah, I know the Bears lost smokin’ Jay for a few weeks. *Lil Uzi Voice* IT DO NOT MATTER! Backup Brian Hoyer is better than enough to keep the Bears in this one. Hoyer has shown excellent ability to force feed the shit out of one WR, when Deandre Hopkins was EATING last year, snagging 111 balls for 1,500+ yards and 11 scores. Now, just pretend like Alshon Jeffery is Hopkins and you have yourself a ball game here folks.
The Cowboys and rookie duo Dak Prescott and Zeke Elliott have played about average thus far, eeking out a win in Washington and barely losing against the Giants. The Bears run defense has been surprisingly good, but this will be its toughest test and I wouldn’t be shocked if Zeke sets new career highs in yards this game. I think the Boys win in a shootout 30-24.