NFL Picks, 11/2

Last week: 5-2
Season: 27-13
Not a great week in the sportsbook– the linemakers have done a good job, and there aren’t many matchups I like. However, there are 4 games worth betting on, and here they are in order of confidence:

1. New England(+2.5) at Denver– Monday
Yee haw, Danny Kanell! Last week he rode my bet right into the ground, and this week I get to bet against him. I wouldn’t miss it for the world… also, the Broncs are missing two receivers (McCaffrey is one as usual), two linebackers and a tackle. The Pats have been banged up all season. Belichek will have his boys ready to go, and Shanahan has only the mighty Kanell to pilot his ship. I may go 2 units on this bet– I’m not sure why the Pats are the dogs here… I think Denver’s home record fooled the linemakers, and they didn’t take into account the fact that Kanell is -14 by himself. Ok, definitely 2 units. The money line may be a better play here– I think the pats will win by at least 3, but I’ll give up the few extra bucks and take the spread for safety’s sake… Lets go Pats!

2. Green Bay at Minnesota (-4.5)
A general rule of thumb for the past few years has been to never bet against B Favre. However, last year’s playoff game where Favre lost to Vick may have been some sort of torch passing game. Favre has been very inconsistent this year, and at times has looked just downright bad. Add to that the following report from John Clayton:
“It’s bad enough Brett Favre has to play this vital NFC North game in a dome stadium where he’s 11-20 as a regular-season starter. What makes matters worse is that he’s doing it with a hairline fracture in his right thumb.”
However, it’s not that simple– Danger Will Robinson! The Vikings rank 30th in the NFL in pass defense, so this game will probably be a shootout (the total is currently at 48.5). I’m hoping Favre’s thumb will cause a couple of picks, and Moss will have his usual big game.

3. St.Louis (-4) at San Francisco
I missed jumping on this one yesterday when the Rams were at -3, but I still think this is worth a bet. Garcia is playing hurt, and Bulger is on fire. Marshall is coming back, and should rip off a big play or 2. The Niners should have won in St. Louis on the infamous Cedric Wilson runs out the clock in the middle of the field play. But Bulger is hot now, and the Rams are looking tough. I don’t like this bet all that much, as the Rams look like an overrated team to me, but Garcia’s injury may prevent him from running the ball as much as he usually does, and that takes a lot away from the SF offense.

4. Carolina (-6.5) at Houston
Ok, this pick is going out on a limb a little bit… but Houston is playing without David Carr for the first time in their short history, and will be led by Tony Banks. Carolina came through for me last week, but obviously their offense is suspect. The under may be a better pick for this game, but I really like Carolina’s running game and their defense as well. Carolina is a very tough team, and I think they’ll run over a Houston team missing their spiritual leader.

The sportsbook bank is at 800! If I can double up by the end of the year (doubtful), I’ll have the choice of dropping it into the poker bank and moving up to the non-raked 10-20 games with a bankroll of 6K (1600 Sportsbook + 2K poker profits + 2K from salary), or rolling it over into the NBA season. I think poker is a better option, as the NBA season is continous and harder to bet. For NFL games, you have more time to research the bets, and you can see more games.

May the football gods be kind.

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