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Week 8 NFL Picks and Analysis

10/30/11

 

Colts at Titans - After losing by a score of 62-7 last week to the Saints, you'd expect the Colts, or any NFL team for that matter, to bounce back. The problem here this week for the Colts is that their opponent, the Titans, were also blown out last week, 41-7. The Titans will likely win this one and although one model we use has the margin at two touchdowns, we'll suggest this one is closer than most think. Colts +9

 

Jaguars at Texans - We'd suggest that the Jaguars shot their load last week on Monday Night. They are averaging just 12 points per game, have the worst passing attack in the NFL and a rookie QB. Texans continue to roll. Texans -9.5

 

Vikings at Panthers - Newton certainly ahead of Ponder in this battle of rookies QB's. 3 wins between these two teams this year, yet for both teams, even their losses were close. As a result, we'll back the dog here. Vikings +3.5

 

Saints at Rams - Normally we'd look to go against an NFL team the week after scoring 62 points. That's one of the oldest handicapping angles in the book. But hey, this Rams team may be one of the worst NFL teams ever. Laying less than two touchdowns almost seems like a bargain in some strange way. We hate laying significant points but we have one model that predicts a 40-10 final! Saints -13.5

 

Cardinals at Ravens - If you believe the Ravens are one of the best teams in the NFL this year, and that we do, than this game will see them bounce back in a big way. They outclass the Cardinals in every category. Only the margin is in doubt. We say 31-10. Ravens -12.5

 

Dolphins at Giants - The Dolphins have lost every game this year both straight up and against the spread. Blowing a 15-0 lead last week to the Broncos may be the blow that causes this team to throw in the towel. The biggest problem, among many, for the Dolphins is an inept offense. The Giants have no trouble finding the end zone so you'd have to question the Dolphins ability to trade points here. Giants -9.5

 

Redskins at Bills - Another game where you'd have to worry about the Redskins ability to put points on the board and stay with the Bills here, who have no trouble offensively. Both teams come in with good defensive yards per point numbers of 17 but offensively it's the Bills with an excellent number of 12 and the Skins with a very poor 18. Also note turnover margin here, Bills +9 and Skins -6. This game will take place in Canada, so not an official home game for the Bills. Bills -6

 

Lions at Broncos - Are the Lions a contender or a pretender? Two straight losses, both at home, under performing against the spread by 11 points in each game. This game will tell us whether the Lions are going to slip into the mediocrity this franchise is used to, or rise to the occassion and give their city something to root for. Matthew Stafford is injured (ankle) but will play and RB Jahvid Best is OUT. Injured or not, the QB edge goes to Stafford. Lions +10 in turnover margin while the Broncos -5. The number is small enough here. We'll lay it. Lions -3

 

Patriots at Steelers - Yet another game where you have to worry about one team offensively. Against "good" teams the Steelers scored 7 and 10 points. They were able to score into the 20's against the Colts and Seahawks and 30's against the Titans and Cards. Meanwhile, the Patriots have scored 30+ against every one with the exception of last weeks 20 against the Cowboys. The Patriots won here last year, 39-26 and that was against a Steelers team that went to the Super Bowl. The Pats and Brady have the #1 ranked passing attack but the Steelers have the #1 pass defense. Also note that the Pats pass defense is last in the NFL, so perhaps Big Ben will find some holes. We have one model which calls for a 24-21 Steeler win. The Steelers haven't proved their worth against an good team yet, but we'll take a shot with them here. It's a shaky call though. Steelers +3 (Steelers -10 in turnover margin)

 

Browns at 49ers - 49ers yards per point numbers among the best in the NFL at 11 on offense and 21 on defense. Spectacular. The Browns numbers are a horrible 19 on offense and 15 on defense. Terrible. The Browns can't score. Using yards per point to make a line, it would be San Fran -16. Wow. Likewise, one NFL model we use says 49ers 28-9. So, 49ers -8.5 and Under 28.5

 

Bengals at Seahawks - RB Cedric Benson is out with a 1 game suspension for Cinci and QB Tavaris Jackson is listed as questionable for Seattle. That's ok as we have very little interest in this one. We'll take the home dog. Seahawks +3 with juice

 

Cowboys at Eagles - Desperation time for the Eagles. To their credit, they have been in every loss but one. Both of these teams in close games all year long. No reason for this one to be any different. Many of our methods point towards the Cowboys here but we're going to side with the deseparate Eagles at home here as things get very interesting in the NFC East. Eagles -3 or better. May have to lay more than -110

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