For the second week in a row, the NFL best-bet parlay came within one pick of hitting a nice payout. But it only takes one loss to blow up the whole thing.
And, in this case, we don’t really have much to complain about. We got a push in the Baltimore-Buffalo game, so that already cut into our earning power that largely was buoyed by nailing the 49ers’ blowout of the Rams.
Our only actual miss of the week was a big one, though. There are few things more humbling than taking the under in a game and seeing the over not only cash but the total almost get doubled. For whatever reason, we faded both the Seattle and Detroit offenses, forgetting or ignoring the fact they have horrendous defenses. We grabbed UNDER 48, and, well, Seattle alone would have been a push, as the Seahawks won 48-45 in what probably will be the highest-scoring game this season.
Back to work here for a Week 5 best-bet parlay. Betting lines are consensus from the NESNBets live odds page.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills UNDER 45.5 (-110)
Hey, Kenny Pickett: Congratulations on getting your first NFL start. First up? You gotta go to Orchard Park to take on the Bills … as 14-point underdogs. We want no part of that spread. The lean has to be Buffalo; last week’s nail-biter aside, when the Bills win, they usually win big. In this one, though, it’s tough to see how Pittsburgh, especially, scores. The Steelers moved the ball pretty well with Pickett under center in the second half last week, and despite the fact he threw three interceptions, none were deemed turnover-worthy plays by Pro Football Focus. The Jets were, however, able to generate some pressure, and the Bills — especially at home — should be able do something similar. Could be a tough weather spot, too, with winds approaching 20 mph in western New York, something that could be an issue for the small-handed Pickett. The Bills will score some points, but this is largely a fade of the Steelers offense in what should be in the neighborhood of 30-10.
Jacksonville Jaguars moneyline (-332) over Houston Texans
Not gonna lie, we added this one to juice the final number a little bit, but we came close to taking the Jags on the spread as 7-point favorites. Jacksonville looked really good at times, especially early, last week against the Eagles. However, Trevor Lawrence became the first person in more than 40 years to lose four fumbles. Gonna guess that doesn’t happen again this week. Houston, meanwhile, has played the easiest schedule in the league this season, per Football Outsiders. The Texans’ toughest test so far was the Chargers last week — the same Chargers team that lost 38-10 to the Jaguars two weeks ago. Expect the Jags to run it early and often against a bad Texans run defense, and that should really open things up for Lawrence to put this game away.
San Francisco 49ers moneyline (-278) over Carolina Panthers
Assuming there’s not a letdown effect coming off the Monday night win over the Rams, there’s a lot to like about the 49ers this week in spite of the cross-country trip. The Carolina offense is truly bad, ranking 31st in both EPA/play and DVOA. If you aren’t familiar with the stats themselves, trust us when we say that is quite bad. The 49ers’ defense by the way? First in both metrics.
(+3.5) Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens
You certainly can score on the Ravens. Baltimore has been hampered by injuries early this season, especially in the secondary. The result has been a pass defense allowing 7.1 yards per attempt through four weeks, which ranks 23rd. The NFL has seemingly figured out ways to slow down the Bengals’ offense, but do the Ravens have the personnel to replicate those game plans? Skepticism is warranted, that’s for sure. The Ravens’ defensive issues have really been evident in their inability to close out games. They almost coughed it up in New England two weeks ago, and they couldn’t close out the Bills last week. Only the Lions and Chargers have allowed more second-half points this season. Cincinnati, on the other hand, ranks second in the same stat, seemingly suggesting it tightens up as the game goes on. Even if that’s not entirely the case, the Ravens’ issues could keep Cincinnati in this game and leave the backdoor open for a late Bengals cover. Cincinnati also has a clear rest advantage coming off a Thursday night home win, while the Ravens had to go to the wire in a grueling contest with Buffalo.
Payout: 1 unit to win 5.31
To-date: UP 1.23 units