Week six was such a good week for us here at RahlReviews. We picked a ton of winners – 5-1 on the day to be exact. Our only loss was the ass whooping that the Bucs laid down on the Packers, but that doesn’t sting when everything else hits. Make sure to follow us @RahlBets on Twitter for the most up to date spreads and picks.
Now week seven on the other hand is a different story. Last week where we saw a lot of value on the board, this week I see a lot of lines placed at the perfect number. Like this Falcons and Lions game. I like the Falcons to win but I was hoping to see them open as a dawg. With the Bills coming off two tough losses, I hoped the line would stay single digits. Even the Bengals and Browns have me confused because I want to pick the Bengals but damn 3 is a small number. But we can still make some change. Like taking the Panthers to cover the 7.5 points against NO. Or the Chargers somehow getting 7.5 against the Jags? But no game they have won or lost has been more than 7. And you guys know I like that Jags offense to a fault. Still with these bigger spreads there for the taking, we are gonna talk about some closer games and hopefully, help you decide who to go with on Sunday. Let’s get started!
Detroit Lions 2-3 @ Atlanta Falcons 1-5 (-2.5)
I know the fans in Detroit are hoping that this bye week came at the perfect time. They should honestly be 3-2 if it wasn’t for a miraculous comeback win from none other than Mitchell Trubisky in week one. They are almost directly in the middle of every statistical category. 15th best in PPG, rush yards per game, and 22nd in passing yards per game. The biggest surprise to me is how they were so reliant on Adrian Peterson while Swift is waiting in the wings. Peterson hasn’t topped a hundred yards yet this season, while Swift saw double digit carries for the first time this year and went for 114. Now maybe during the bye week Matt Patricia finally looked in the mirror and realized that this isn’t the AP of old. Yes he hasn’t been terrible but personally I feel like a younger, more spry RB could be put to be better use. Especially with a guy like Stafford who had Theo Riddick to rely on in the passing game. Swift has the hands, the vision and the speed to get things done and I’m looking forward to seeing how he progresses in this system. The running game will be the key for them to get a W. Atlanta has been awful on defense but they have defended the ground game rather well. Ranking fifth in rush yards per game has allowed them some hope. Yet that maybe more to the fact that they are absolutely terrible against the pass.
Atlanta is coming in off their first win last week, in dominating fashion I might add. With the return of Julio Jones, Matt Ryan looked like the Ryan of old. Now they haven’t exactly been on the same page this year but that connection will always be there. Especially with Dan Quinn gone, these guys can just go out and play. I feel like the whole team played really tight to begin the season. Quinn knew he was on the hot seat and that could of easily trickled down to his players. Now with a losing record, a fresh start, and nothing really holding them back, I see this Falcons offense soaring the rest of the year. They are currently 4th in YPG and 2nd in passing YPG. With such an atrocious defense, there really shouldn’t be a reason why they don’t stay that way. The one disappointment in this offense is TGIII. He has topped 100 yards once, his involvement in the passing game is nonexistent and really the only thing saving him is the fact that he can find the end zone down by the goal line. Maybe his knees just aren’t going to be able to hold up to the rigorous season. Maybe they will never really have a lead and the ability to run the ball effectively. But with those short comings you have others who stepped up. Calvin Ridley could win the Most Improved Player award if Josh Allen doesn’t step his game back up. He has seen double digit targets in four out of six game and in those games he went over 100 yards. His routes look so clean and that is really helping with separation. I love this kid and I hope that his career can blossom into the something like the man who lines up along side him.
With a 55.5 point O/U, we should expect a barn burner. Both defenses lack any ability to instill fear. Both teams are playing like they have something to prove and both probably still believe that they can compete with anyone in this league. Matthew Stafford should have a big game with Kenny G, and I expect Ryan to throw for 350+ yards. When I see high O/U like that I always get nervous to take the over. But something tells me that there will be big plays a plenty. So give me the Over and the Falcons to cover the 2.5.
Pittsburgh Steelers 5-0 @ Tennessee Titans 5-0 (-1)
Playoff quality football in October, you gotta love it. Pittsburgh coming in with a swagger that can’t be matched. The defensive line has been immovable, the Offense has looked so smooth, and the Boz is 100% for the year. They have excelled in all aspects of the game and people are now believing the magic that we all know here in Pittsburgh. For what it’s worth, ESPN Power Rankings have the Steelers at 3rd. Even after losing the play caller on the defensive side, Devin Bush. He was a large reason for their #2 ranking against the run. His 4.4 speed, paired with his play recognition is a huge loss. The team shows belief in his replacement, Robert Spillane. But it’s a team effort to take down the Mananimal that is Derrick Henry. Now what about the offense? Big Ben has looked surprising solid for a guy who has come off his type of injury. And this matchup with Tennessee should allow him to thrive. Tennessee is bottom five in passing and giving up multiple passing touchdowns four out of their five games. Deshaun Watson just raked them for 335 yards and 4 touchdowns. The entire receiving core is dripping with talent and I see no one covering these guys. And we know that the Steelers come to play against tough competition (besides New England) and loses to the bums of the league.
Tennessee comes in on this sort of “you hate us if you aint us” attitude. When the Covid issues started, the Titans received a lot of the worst publicity. They held private practices where more people eventually contacted the virus. It pushed back byes for multiple teams and ultimately made a lot of people’s lives hell. But that isn’t stopping them from being a close team that knows they can hang with anyone. Let’s not forget that they are 12-4 in their last 16 played. I don’t know what more it will take for Tannehill to get people to believe he has changed. He had Adam freaking Gase as his coach the year he got traded. So let’s think that this guy is someone new, let’s take the fact that he is top 5 in passing touchdowns for what it is. This guy has found new life in this system and a Pittsburgh defense who is more susceptible to the passing game, should be a way to take advantage. Plus he hands the ball to Henry, how much easier can it get. Now just like Pittsburgh, the Titans lost a key piece for their success. Their left tackle Taylor Lewan will be out for the season with a torn ACL. He is easily their best offensive lineman and is the anchor for that line. It will be interesting to see if their backup will be able to handle the zone blitz scheme of Pittsburgh.
This is such a pick em and I think the line will eventually move a lot up until kick off. My biggest pause comes with the fact that this game is played in Tennessee. It’s known that Ben is so different when he is away from Heinz Field. His interceptions take a significant jump, and in what is a close game, that’s a huge difference maker. I think it’s going to be close. Henry runs for 100 yards, Tannehill gets at-least 250 and 2, and ultimately a late pick seals a Titans win. Give me Tennessee with the points.
Las Vegas Raiders 3-2 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4-2 (-4.5)
Please remember that if players test positive later in the week, this game will get moved. It’s unfortunate that the Raiders will probably be without their starting left tackle Trent Brown. That’s going to be huge against the fearsome pass rush in Tampa. But let’s not forget that Carr is tied for the fewest interceptions in the league with one. He also is second in quarterback rating. He is super efficient and precise with the ball. He is perfect for this Raiders system and I hope Gruden sees that. He plays mistake free ball and if he can just trust himself a little more downfield, I think this team can be something. Josh Jacobs doesn’t have the yard total you wish to see but he still finds the end zone. This is the time of year where Henry Ruggs should make his mark. And let’s not forget about Waller. Who many doubted coming into this year but he has proven once again to be the best passing option in Oakland. It won’t be easy though because this Tampa defense is something serious.
Every team should be scared after seeing what this defense did to Rodgers. Green Bay looked like no one could slow them down but them. 30+ points in every game was reduced to 10 and just 3 points after that first drive. Aaron Jones had just 15 yards, Rodgers threw two huge interceptions, and every time he stepped in the pocket it seemed as if he was getting hit. The pressure is real. JPP is fourth in sacks. Devin White looks phenomenal. Shaquille Barret is still causing havoc despite the double teams. And one thing is now, they aren’t playing from behind every game. Finally this defense has an offense that allows them to play care free. Tom is still getting more and more comfortable in that system. Godwin and Evans are hobbled getting healthier every week. Gronk even looks like someone who is getting featured at times in this offense. And then they added AB. Truly a team full riches right now. AB won’t see action till probably week 9 maybe even week 10 but maybe this puts a fire under the guys here. Maybe they will want to go out and prove that, yeah he will help but we were great without him.
Part of me from the jump really wanted to go with Vegas to cover. I think they are a solid team that will continually get no respect. But I’m nervous to go against what I saw last week. Especially because I got burned by it at the betting table. The O-Line will be without their best guy, the Bucs defense will hold Jacobs to under 70 and cover that 4.5 point spread.
San Francisco 49ers 3-3 @ New England Patriots 2-3 (-2.5)
Injuries are a real son of a bitch huh? San Fran loses key players what feels like every week! Mostert with the high ankle now so he will probably be done for 4-6 weeks. The pass rush hasn’t been the same with out Bosa. And now they have to hope that Trent Williams can come back from a nasty ankle injury. Still Kyle Shanahan has gotten his guys together an pull off a huge win against a solid Rams squad. No matter what happens, you can’t really count this team out. Not even after losses to Miami and Philadelphia. George Kittle is still who we all thought he was and is continuing to dominate. It’s clear that the offense truly revolves around the run game and getting him the ball. So who will lead the charge in the other half of that equation? Because we all know by now that New England is going to take away your best option. I expect Kittle to see double coverage and jams off the line every play. It’s time for Jerick McKinnon to step up and earn that money he got a couple years ago. When Mostert has been out, he recorded a touchdown each game. He has the elusiveness and the hands to be a good back to catch the ball out of the backfield. Right now he is healthy, they need to lean on him and Deebo a lot this week. But can they actually come through?
The Patriots on the other hand have been rather healthy this year out side of the players who contracted covid. Cam looks comfortable in the offense. The defense still looks great even after having key guys opt of this year. And overall it’s not the Tom Brady let Patriots but they are still a team who can compete. Cam looked bad last week, there is no denying that. But he did just come off a long break and we should maybe consider some rust in that. San Francisco also struggles mightily against running quarterbacks. Kyler went for 91 and a touchdown, Daniel Jones got 49 yards on 5 carries, hell even Wentz ran for 37 and a touchdown. It’s a problem that has stemmed from last year and has leaked into this year. Now they are playing one of the best mobile QBs to ever play the game.
So even though the defending NFC champs are coming off a big win in LA, I just don’t think they will stack up with New England. I don’t know how good Jimmy G really is. I really don’t think he will do well without having his best option available at all times. The Patriots will move the ball well this game. Can goes for 75+ and scores twice at the goal line. Give me the Patriots to cover the 2.5.