NFL Office Pool Picks Week 5 with Expert Analysis and ATS Predictions
After an impressive Week 3 for the underdogs in which they went 10-6 and 10-5-1 ATS, the favorites made somewhat of a return in Week 4. While the favorites were 10-6 outright in the week, they went just 7-9 against the spread. The biggest upset was the Titans' 24-17 victory over the Colts, which was a 4.5-point spread heading into the matchup. The Week 5 slate has some larger spreads than has been the case through the start of the season as teams begin to separate themselves and find their places in the power rankings. Here is a breakdown of the matchups.
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Thursday Night: Denver Broncos (-3.5) over Indianapolis Colts
Both teams have failed to live up to expectations to start the season. Jonathan Taylor is set to miss the matchup, which is a major hit to the Colts' offense. The Broncos also announced that Russell Wilson is battling a right shoulder injury, but he is still expected to suit up. With the cold weather and high altitude of Denver, expect the Broncos to move to 3-2 on the season and take advantage of the dome-accustomed Colts. They have failed to put the pieces together thus far, but the Broncos have the more complete team and can be counted on to secure a comfortable win. Broncos 24, Colts 17.
Sunday Morning: New York Giants (+8.5) over Green Bay Packers
This pair of 3-1 teams are set to face off in London for a Sunday morning (in America) matchup. The Packers struggled to put away the Patriots, led by third-string quarterback Bailey Zappe. The Giants' offense is rolling mostly as a credit to Saquon Barkley. Daniel Jones picked up an ankle injury last week, and backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor is in concussion protocol. While the Packers should be counted on to get the victory, the Giants have proven scrappy enough to compete. Take the Giants to cover and expect it to remain within a touchdown throughout the game.
Buffalo Bills (-14) over Pittsburgh Steelers
The largest spread of the NFL season thus far will be this 14-point difference as the Super Bowl favorite Bills are set to face off against the 1-3 Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers have some room for optimism this week as they have named Kenny Pickett the starting quarterback. Pickett completed 10 of his 13 pass attempts for 120 yards but threw three interceptions. Regardless, the Bills are the more talented team and are coming off a hard-nosed victory over the Ravens. While 14 points is a large spread, the Bills have proven capable of blowing teams out as evidenced by the 55-point win margin they tallied through the first two weeks. Take the Bills -14 and count on a victory of 20+ points this week.
Los Angeles Chargers (-3) over Cleveland Browns
Each team comes into this matchup 2-2, but neither has quite lived up to their hopes thus far. Through four weeks, the Chargers have allowed 27 points per game, which is 30th in the NFL. Both teams are dealing with injuries, as Myles Garrett and Joey Bosa have landed on the injury report. Garrett looks like he may be on track to return this week, but Bosa will continue to be held out. Even with the star defender out, expect the Chargers to pick up the victory and cover the spread. Los Angeles is 8-2 straight up in their last 10 games against the Browns, and this is a trend that should be expected to continue. Chargers 31, Browns 21.
Minnesota Vikings (-7) over Chicago Bears
The Vikings are 3-1 on the season and come off a thrilling 28-25 victory over the Saints. In contrast, the Bears are 2-2 and coming off a frustrating loss to the Giants in which Saquon Barkley was taking snaps under center against them by the end of the matchup. The talent gap certainly favors the Vikings, and the best chance for Chicago will be to keep this a low-scoring game. Don’t expect this to be the case and for the Vikings to have too much firepower for the Bears to handle. Take Minnesota to win and cover in this one as they secure the double-digit victory.
Detroit Lions (+3) over New England Patriots
The Patriots seemed in control of most of their Week 4 matchup with the Packers but were unable to pick up the victory in the end. This drops them to 1-3 on the season, and Mac Jones is set to remain out with his high ankle sprain. The Lions also come into the matchup 1-3 but have not lost any of the three games by more than four points. While New England did a terrific job game planning without their quarterback, and Bailey Zappe did a solid job steering the team, Jared Goff has quietly been having an extremely impressive season. Detroit is a hard-nosed team that does not give up. Count on them to go into New England and win outright as the Patriots’ offense struggles to put up points.
Seattle Seahawks (+5.5) over New Orleans Saints
Geno Smith seems to have found new life in his career as he is in the midst of an impressive season. His 77.3% completion percentage is the highest ever recorded through the first four weeks of a season, and he is coming off a 48-45 victory over the Lions in which he accounted for 369 yards of total offense. This will be a matchup where injury status will be one to watch as Jameis Winston, Michael Thomas, and Alvin Kamara all missed last week’s matchup, and it is uncertain if they will return. At the minimum, expect this game to remain close and for the 5.5-point spread to be too much. If a few of the Saints return from injury, it could change things, but I am counting on the Seahawks to pull off an upset victory.
Miami Dolphins (-3) over New York Jets
With Tua Tagovailoa in concussion protocol after last week's scary injury, Teddy Bridgewater is set to take the reigns as the starter. Zach Wilson will be under center for the Jets after guiding the team to a win last week upon his injury return. The Jets are 2-2 on the season and are trending in the right direction, but the dynamic wide receiver duo of Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle are sure to cause them issues. Count on Mike McDaniels to get creative in his play calls and for Bridgewater to lead the team to a victory. Miami is a solid team even without their starting quarterback, and Bridgewater is more than capable of guiding them to a victory. Dolphins 27, Jets 17.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-9) over Atlanta Falcons
Each of these teams comes into the matchup 2-2 and is a bit surprised with their results. Tampa Bay will look to avoid a dreadful 0-3 home record to start the season in this matchup against the Falcons. However, Atlanta has some solid momentum coming off a come-from-behind 23-20 win over the Browns in which their ground attack made a major difference. It feels Tom Brady and the Bucs need a statement win, and they have a chance to get it against the Falcons. Buccaneers 34, Falcons 17.
Tennessee Titans (-2.5) over Washington Commanders
The Titans will be ready for a familiar opponent as they faced off against Carson Wentz twice last season while he was the quarterback of the Colts. The Titans came out on top in both matchups and forced two interceptions in the process. Tennessee is also riding some momentum following the Titans’ upset victory over the Matt Ryan-led Colts last week. Look for them to ride the momentum and take down the 1-3 Commanders in the cross-conference matchup. The Titans seem to be finding their stride and will continue this by picking up a victory by a touchdown or more.
Jacksonville Jaguars (-7) over Houston Texans
The Jaguars are coming off a sloppy loss to the Eagles in which Trevor Lawrence struggled to hold onto the ball. The quarterback threw one interception and fumbled the ball four times in the matchup. In his defense, the conditions were far from in his favor and the Eagles' defense brought pressure seemingly every down. With less defensive pass-rush expected and a better matchup against Houston, look for the Jaguars to get back on track. The Texans have impressed early in the season but lack the overall talent to hold up with a Jaguars team that has already picked up convincing wins over the Colts and Chargers. Jacksonville 27, Houston 17.
San Francisco 49ers (-6.5) over Carolina Panthers
The addition of Baker Mayfield has not solved the Panthers' offensive struggles as the team is putting up the least amount of yards across the NFL. Mayfield has only thrown for over 200 yards once so far this season. The Panthers will now be forced to attempt to turn this around against an impressive 49ers defense. Expect this to be a low-scoring matchup but for the 49ers to win and comfortably cover the spread. San Francisco 20, Carolina 6.
Los Angeles Rams (-4.5) over Dallas Cowboys
Dak Prescott is still not set to make his return to the field, and Cooper Rush will have another chance to demonstrate why there is a brewing quarterback controversy in Dallas. At 3-1, the Cowboys will have a difficult challenge against the defending Super Bowl champions. The Rams looked to be finding their stride but suffered a 24-9 loss to the 49ers on Monday Night. This is an excellent chance for them to bounce back as the Cowboys gradually come down to earth. The Dallas pass-rush will be a problem and allow the game to remain close, but count on the Rams to pick up the victory by five or more points in this matchup.
Arizona Cardinals (+5.5) over Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles come into this matchup as the only undefeated team in the NFL, but Kyler Murray will provide their threatening defense with a new challenge. Arizona has had a brutal schedule to start the year but comes in 2-2, with their losses coming at the hands of the Chiefs and Rams. With the home crowd behind them and the Eagles facing likely their greatest challenge of the season, count on the Cardinals to pull off the upset. While they came from behind in the Week 4 victory, this Eagles team still needs to be tested more. The Cardinals will come in battle-tested and give them a more difficult challenge than they have seen this year. Cardinals 27, Eagles 24.
Sunday Night: Baltimore Ravens (-3) over Cincinnati Bengals
This pair of 2-2 teams are set to face off, with both expected to be in the playoff race later in the year. The Ravens are coming off a 23-20 loss to the Bills and looking for revenge, while the Bengals have won their last two games to get back to .500. Lamar Jackson has been playing at an extremely high level this season and is the biggest reason why the team is currently 3rd in the NFL in scoring with 29.8 points per game. This is going to be a thrilling matchup that could come down to the wire, but expect the Ravens to get the better of Cincinnati in the matchup. Ravens 27, Bengals 20.
Monday Night: Kansas City Chiefs (-7) over Las Vegas Raiders
In a divisional matchup with both teams looking to make a statement, the Chiefs will look to move to 4-1, while the Raiders desperately try to climb out of the hole they put themselves in to start the season. Fresh off their first win, the Raiders must look to ride the momentum to get their season back on track. Unfortunately, this is a tough task against a Kansas City team that is 8-1 against Las Vegas in their last nine matchups. The Chiefs are still playing at a high level and continue to have one of the most dynamic offenses in the league. Expect the Raiders to keep this competitive but for the Chiefs' firepower to be too much. Chiefs 31, Raiders 21.