Week 5 Odds, Trends, and Bets
While the Cardinals are the last undefeated team, the Cowboys are the only undefeated team Against The Spread (ATS). Despite their Week 1 loss against the Buccaneers, Dallas has covered in four straight games including their three-game straight-up winning streak.
As for the rest of the teams, there are seven with 3-1 ATS records and, as you'll see below, our betting analysts expect a few of those squads to improve to 4-1 ATS after this weekend.
Regarding our team's performance, Jen Piacenti (16-8 ATS) and Casey Olson (11-9 ATS) are leading the charge. But a disastrous week across the board in Week 4 has our group extra hungry to knock out a big-time winning week.
Last week we noted our analysts differed on six different matchups, the most to date. Luckily, this week most of us are much more in line with our predictions, including four of our five analysts banking on the Chargers for their matchup against the Browns.
Week 5 Best Bets
Here's our criteria for picking games:
- All odds from SI Sportsbook
- Each analyst must pick five games
- Three of the bets must be against the spread or over/under
- The remaining two picks (if all five aren't ATS or O/U) can be on the moneyline (but at least one of those picks must be on an underdog)
- We believe transparency is paramount in the world of sports betting, which is why we entrust Sharp Rank to keep track of all our picks/performance.
Jen Piacenti's Best Bet: Bills +2.5
The Bills PLUS the points? I gotta do it! The Chiefs are 4-1 in their last 5 games, but they are 1-4 ATS while the Bills are 5-0 ATS. Both teams have big offenses, averaging 33.5 points per game this year. Look for Buffalo to attack on the ground, as the Chiefs have already allowed five rushing touchdowns to opposing running backs and two rushing TDs to opposing quarterbacks. They have also allowed the sixth-most air yards and 8.77 yards per attempt to opposing quarterbacks. Josh Allen should have a good day.
Patrick Mahomes continues to play football like it’s a video game, but he will have more of a challenge this week facing a Bills defense that has only allowed 664 passing yards all year to opposing quarterbacks (though—to be fair—one of those was Davis Mills). The Bills have also not allowed a rushing touchdown to a running back. In fact, the Bills have allowed only 11 points per game to opposing offenses. That’s the best mark in the league.
Meanwhile, the Chiefs have allowed a whopping 31.2 points per game, second only to Atlanta. The more you look at this, the more it seems obvious Buffalo will easily cover the spread.
Richard Johnson's Best Bet: Patriots -9
I hate to take a favorite by more than a touchdown because it's the NFL and things happen, but have you seen how bad the Texans are? They weren't really serious about winning coming into the year and now Tyrod Taylor remains sidelined with an injury. The Pats 'offense isn't lighting the world on fire, but it's Bill Belichick against a very bad rookie quarterback. This is easy.
Casey Olson's Best Bet: Titans -4.5
If you think the Titans have had a rough start (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS), the Jaguars just said, 'Hold my beer.' Although they showed a bit of life in the first half against the Bengals in Week 4, they went back to their ways by blowing a 14-point lead in a 24-21 loss. The Jaguars' defense is ranked 30th in the league, giving up 418.5 yards per game, 312.3 in the air and 6.4 per play.
The Titans had a potpourri of injuries that led to a bad showing last week against the Jets. They should be in a better spot this week and have a chip on their shoulder that allows them to get back on track. Ryan Tannehill has received little protection and has been sacked a league-high 17 times, but should get some breathing room this week as the Jaguars rank dead last in the league with just five sacks and one lonely pickoff.
Frank Taddeo's Best Bet: Chargers -1
Justin Herbert is playing at an elite level. Both teams are 3-1 straight-up & ATS, so something has to give. We will back the Chargers in Week 5, especially with the new that Baker Mayfield has been playing with a partially torn labrum. Roll with team who has beaten two powerhouse clubs in Kansas City and Las Vegas, as opposed to a Browns team with wins that barely move the needle against Chicago and Houston. Let's cash on the Bolts with a spread that demands virtually a straight-up win.
Bill Enright's Best Bet: Bills/Chiefs Over 56.5
I'm expecting an offensive explosion on Sunday Night Football when two of the league's highest-scoring offenses take the field in primetime. The Bills and Chiefs are both averaging 33.5 points per game, tied for the second-highest mark in the NFL (Cardinals, 35 points per game).
Both teams have passers in Allen and Mahomes with a knack to throw deep and capitalize on big plays, but they also have been efficient inside the red zone. Both rank inside the top five at the position for completions inside the 10-yard line. Among quarterbacks with at least ten attempts inside the 10, Mahomes has completed 75% of those passes while Allen has connected on 62%. Offensive efficiency between the 20s and inside of it is a recipe for a both teams eclipsing the 30-point mark.
Sports Illustrated's Betting 101 series
Whether you are an experienced sports bettor or someone who is new to the scene, the Betting 101 series is perfect as a refresher course or guide to learn more. Check out our list of key terms that every sports bettor must know.
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