Sunday, 20 December 2015

NFL picks against the spread, Week 15: Looking for a SuperContest rebound

I'm taking part in the 2015 SuperContest with the folks at OddsShark, so it is time to take you along for the ride. Here are my Week 15 picks against the spread.

Welcome back for Week 15 of the 2015 NFL season. The return of the NFL means gambling is back in our lives. The NFL might frown upon it, but gambling and fantasy football are two of the biggest reasons for the NFL's insane level of popularity. I think they'll put up with it.
This year I am back for another crack at the LVH SuperContest. The contest includes over 1,400 participants picking games each week to see who can come out on top. Our partners at OddsShark have staked myself and a handful of other participants in the SuperContest. You can track all of us here, and you can follow the standings here.
The contest involves picking five games each week for 17 weeks. You get to choose which five games you will pick. The lines are locked in Wednesday evening, and picks are submitted by the end of the week. I am currently sitting at 44-24-2. I am coming off a poor performance, going 2-3 in Week 14. Hopefully I can avoid the inevitable letdown. Here are my five picks for Week 15.
New York Jets (-3.5) over DALLAS COWBOYS - Loss
I should have avoided the 1/2-point hook on this one. Let's hope for 4-1 or 3-2!
Chicago Bears (+5.5) over MINNESOTA VIKINGS
The Bears have had an odd year. They are 2-5 ATS at home, but 5-1 ATS on the road. They won in Green Bay, only to lose back-to-back home games to the San Francisco 49ers and Washington. They now head to face a Minnesota team that is probably going to the playoffs, but needs to get some momentum on their side. 5.5 points seems like too many.
WASHINGTON (+1) over Buffalo Bills
Washington surprised folks with their first road win of the season last week. Unlike Chicago, Washington has been better at home, with Kirk Cousins putting up a 111.5 QB rating at home, and a 74.6 on the road. I like that, and will take my chances.
Green Bay Packers (-3) over OAKLAND RAIDERS
The Packers switched their offensive play-calling back to head coach Mike McCarthy last week. They dominated on the ground in a win over Dallas, and the hope is that they built enough on that to carry it into Oakland. The Raiders are coming off a huge win over the Broncos, but like Chicago, have been better on the road. They are 2-4 ATS at home and 5-2 ATS on the road. I'm hoping for a Raiders letdown.
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (+3.5) over Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals are rolling right now, having won seven straight. However, they are 3-4 ATS in that span. The Eagles have had an interesting season from an against the spread perspective. They are 6-7 ATS for the season. They are 6-4 ATS in games Bradford starts and finishes, and 5-1 ATS in the last six such games. Just as it seems Bradford has struggled, the Eagles have actually been looking pretty decent with him. I'll roll the dice on that.
Here are all my picks for Week 15 (7-9 last week, 106-96-5 overall):
ST. LOUIS RAMS vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+2.5): Bucs - Loss
DALLAS COWBOYS vs. New York Jets (-3.5): Jets
MINNESOTA VIKINGS vs. Chicago Bears (+5.5): Bears
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS vs. Atlanta Falcons (+3): Jaguars
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS vs. Houston Texans (+2): Colts
BALTIMORE RAVENS vs. Kansas City Chiefs (-7.5): Ravens
WASHINGTON vs. Buffalo Bills (-1): Washington
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS vs. Tennessee Titans (+14): Patriots
NEW YORK GIANTS vs. Carolina Panthers (-4.5): Panthers
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS vs. Cleveland Browns (+14.5): Seahawks
OAKLAND RAIDERS vs. Green Bay Packers (-3): Packers
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS vs. Miami Dolphins (+2): Chargers
PITTSBURGH STEELERS vs. Denver Broncos (+6.5): Steelers
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS vs. Cincinnati Bengals (-4.5): 49ers
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES vs. Arizona Cardinals (-3.5): Eagles
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS vs. Detroit Lions (-3): Lions

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