Weekend Football Picks: Why Patriots-Texans Won’t Sniff 40 Total Points

New England is 4-0 to the "Under" this season

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Last weekend’s football picks went 3-2 again. We nailed Iowa, Georgia and the Ravens, but Ole Miss was no match for Alabama and the Panthers faded in Dallas.

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.

Penn State Nittany Lions at Iowa Hawkeyes (-2, O/U 41)
Iowa ML -130

I can’t get enough of the Hawkeyes. I’ve backed them three times already this season and this will be the fourth. The Iowa disrespect continues as bookmakers opened the line short of a field goal in Iowa City. How can one of the best defenses in the nation only be a two-point home favorite? You won’t catch me playing moneyline favorites too often, but it’s crucial to protect myself against a one or two-point Hawkeye win. If Iowa prevails 17-16, we’ll be A-okay.

Wisconsin Badgers (-11, O/U 42) at Illinois Fighting Illini
Wisconsin -11

I don’t even care if Badgers quarterback Graham Mertz plays or not, this is an anti-Illinois bet. The Fighting Illini are going to struggle to move the ball against this stingy Wisconsin defense. The betting market started to move toward Bucky Badger this afternoon (-10 to -11) when tight end Jake Ferguson was basically given the green light to play. Wisconsin should have no issues running the ball down Illinois’ throats and setting up big plays down the field via the passing game. This one could easily be 28-10.

San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals (-5.5, O/U 50)
49ers +5.5

The Cardinals are being priced like a great team in this matchup and I’m not there yet. The lookahead line was Arizona -2.5 last week and after the Birds looked great and the Niners struggled, oddsmakers jacked the spread up to Arizona -5.5. Talk about an overreaction. All signs point to rookie quarterback Trey Lance getting the start and I’m okay with that, too. I’ll take my chances with the kid after a full week of practice and preparation with the starters. This number is just too high for my blood.

New England Patriots (-9, O/U 39.5) at Houston Texans
Under 39.5 points

If you’re looking for offense, you probably shouldn’t watch this one. The Patriots were missing four starters on the offensive line at practice Thursday and I expect three of them to be unavailable for Sunday. That’s not exactly an ideal situation for rookie quarterback Mac Jones from a protection standpoint. On the other side of the coin, how many points do you think a Davis Mills-led offense is going to score on Bill Belichick’s defense? Lol. Prepare for a 17-13 rock fight in Houston.

Cleveland Browns at Los Angeles Chargers (-2, O/U 47)
Browns +2

I think the Cleveland Browns should be favored in this game. The Chargers’ home-field advantange has been non-existent for decades and sharp bettors have historically loved to bet against LA (formerly San Diego) when the Bolts are short favorites at home. Cleveland has the running game to keep Justin Herbert on the sideline and the defensive line to make life difficult on Herbert when he’s on the field. Don’t be surprised when the Browns win this one by a touchdown.

Sam’s Picks
Iowa ML -130
Wisconsin -11
49ers +5.5
NE-HOU Under 39.5

Browns +2

RECORD: (58-54, -1.1)

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