History should repeat itself in Sunday night’s Super Bowl LI rematch.
New York Jets at Miami Dolphins (-3.5)
The 3-3 Jets are among the NFL’s biggest surprises this year and draw another favorable matchup with the Dolphins, whom they’ve already beaten once this year (20-6 in Week 3).
Miami is last in the league in scoring, passing yards and yards per play, so the Jets should have no trouble stopping Jay Cutler and company as they are 13th in PPG allowed. The Dolphins have relied heavily on their defense this year, which is third in PPG allowed and fourth-best at stopping the run. However, they can be exploited through the air, as Josh McCown showed when these teams last met (126.3 passer rating).
The Jets have been a great bet of late (4-1 ATS in their last five games) and should continue to reward their backers in Week 7.
The pick: Jets +3.5
Baltimore Ravens at Minnesota Vikings (-5.5)
There’s no place like home for the Vikings, who are 7-3 ATS in their last ten at U.S. Bank Stadium. By contrast, the Ravens are 3-7 ATS in their last ten road tilts. Minnesota’s home-field advantage looks even stronger when weighing their 14-6 ATS record in their last 20 games as home favorites.
Trends aside, the Vikings should be able to dominate this game on the ground with Jerick McKinnon, as Baltimore has the league’s third-worst rush defense. Minnesota’s quarterback situation remains fluid, but the starting signal caller (likely Case Keenum) should not have to carry a heavy burden in this one.
By contrast, Joe Flacco owns one of the worst passer ratings in the league (66.1) and will match up with one of the NFL’s stingiest defenses (fifth by YPG). Expect the Vikings to stifle Baltimore’s offense en route to a comfortable win. Minnesota is the best bet of the week.
The pick: Vikings -5.5
Atlanta Falcons at New England Patriots (-3.5)
The Patriots are favored by a suspiciously-low number in this Super Bowl rematch between two high-octane offenses.
Tom Brady should face little resistance through the air, as his top-ranked passing offense meets the Falcons’ 12th-rated pass stoppers. Atlanta’s offense is going through some growing pains under first-year coordinator Steve Sarkisian, putting up just 17 points in consecutive home contests. And while they’ll match up with a shaky New England defense that allows the most YPG in football, Matt Ryan and company will have to step their game up on the road.
The Patriots have the advantage in the turnover department, as they rank eighth at plus-3. Far worse by comparison are the Falcons, who are 27th with a minus-4 turnover differential. Laying less than four points with New England in this probable shootout appears to be a bargain.
The pick: Patriots -3.5
Best of the rest (picks in bold)
Arizona Cardinals at Los Angeles Rams (-3.5) (London)
Tennessee Titans (-5.5) at Cleveland Browns
Jacksonville Jaguars (-3) at Indianapolis Colts
Carolina Panthers (-3) at Chicago Bears
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Buffalo Bills (-3)
New Orleans Saints (-5.5) at Green Bay Packers
Dallas Cowboys (-6) at San Francisco 49ers
Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers (-5.5)
Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Chargers (-1.5)
Seattle Seahawks (-5.5) at New York Giants
Washington Redskins at Philadelphia Eagles (-5)