Weekend Football Picks: Keep Doubting Iowa Hawkeyes At Your Own Risk

The undefeated Hawkeyes should handle Purdue pretty easily


Oct 15, 2021

Last weekend’s football picks went 2-3. We nailed Iowa and Wisconsin, but the New England Patriots-Houston Texans game went Over, and the Cleveland Browns and San Francisco 49ers both blew late, fourth-quarter covers.


If you’re new around these parts, this is not a place where you’ll find a million betting picks. I isolate the picks I really, really like and roll with those. Nothing more, nothing less. Don’t expect to see any five-team parlays or “locks” on primetime games, either.

Let’s go to work.

Purdue Boilermakers at Iowa Hawkeyes (-11.5, O/U 43)
Iowa -11.5

Go ahead, keep throwing shade at Iowa. The Hawkeyes have a top-three defense in the country despite the lazy narrative that they can’t keep forcing turnovers and holding opponents off the scoreboard. Kirk Ferentz’s squad is plus-15 in turnover margin and now it welcomes a hobbled Boilermakers offense to Kinnick Stadium. Iowa might not be a great football team, but they can still pound mediocre ones. These teams aren’t even in the same stratosphere. Lay the points.

Alabama Crimson Tide (-17, O/U 58) at Mississippi State Bulldogs
Alabama -17

The Tide are 5-0 ATS in their last five games off a loss under Nick Saban and they’ve covered by an average of 11.4 points per game. My buddy Brad Powers made me cackle this week when he said Saban is getting crankier with old age. Mississippi State doesn’t even try to run the football and the Bulldogs should be in for a rude awakening against an Alabama defense that has been getting lectured and screamed at all week in practice. Expect a focused and physical bunch to shut down Mike Leach’s one-dimensional offense.

Dallas Cowboys (-3.5, O/U 50.5) at New England Patriots
Patriots +3.5

This line makes absolutely no sense. The Cowboys are undefeated against the spread this season (5-0) and now they roll into Foxboro and are only laying 3.5 points?! Hmmm. This line actually opened Dallas -2.5 and got bet up to -4, then a bunch of big bets poured in on New England. Bill Belichick and Co. pulled off outright upsets against Kyler Murray and Lamar Jackson last season and had every chance to beat Tom Brady earlier this month. Let’s see what the Hoodie has in store for Dak Prescott on Sunday.

Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (-10, O/U 43.5)
Colts -10

Houston put together an “A” game last week at home against New England, but how many times is that going to happen this year? Three? Rookie quarterback Davis Mills was stellar, but that performance is all available on tape for Matt Eberflus’ defense. I’ll happily bet on some Texans regression as they hit the highway and face a Colts team that has historically found its stride in the month of October under Frank Reich. Not many people want to lay all those points, but I’ll do it without hesitation.

Sam’s Picks
Iowa -11.5
Alabama -17
Patriots +3.5
Colts -10

RECORD: (60-57, -2.4)

Thumbnail photo via Bryon Houlgrave/The Register via USA TODAY Sports Images

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