NFL Week 5 Pick Recap
Each week we'll be providing our pick recap to validate our performance and give everyone an in depth view of what our subscribers receive. Let's have a look at the selections below from week 5.
The GreenZone had one of the worst weeks we have ever had in the history of ProMathletics, going 0-5-1. This resulted in a loss of -30.8 Units. The Phins giving up back to back defensive TDs in the 4th quarter of the game, the Titans dropping a wide open TD in the endzone in the 4th quarter, and Flacco throwing a pick on the 1 yard line followed by a Ravens blocked FG before the half, all surely didn't help our weekend. The only saving grace was Dallas closed at 3.5 at almost every book on the planet, so hopefully you got that line. We could have easily been 3-2-1 (4-2 with Dallas at 3.5), but the football Gods giveth and the Gods taketh on any given Sunday.
The Yellow and RedZone were on as they finished 5-4. Below is a breakdown of the entire Zone performances, along with Bankroll return based on our recommended unit sizing of each GreenZone game and exotic bets.
Furthermore, each write up for the 6 games we covered for our subscribers is included. This is sent each week for every GreenZone game, and we will also do a FREE write up on the Thursday and Monday night game regardless of Zone. See below for our in depth analysis on our picks from last week.
[6.6 Units] Miami Dolphins (+6.5) at Cincinnati - LOSS
6.6 Units – MIA +6 or more
3.3 Units – MIA +4.5 to +5.5
No Action – MIA +4 or less
The Dolphins came out and laid an absolute stinker last week in New England. That last impression is undoubtedly depressing their value in the eyes of the public. It wasn’t fun being on the wrong side of that one, but we don’t let biases impact our analysis on a forward looking basis. We have these teams as very evenly matched on a neutral field. Cincinnati has a better offense, Miami has a higher performing defense, and both teams are equally solid on special teams. Remarkably, our models have this at a spread of -2.97 in favor of the home team…basically right on par with what you’d suspect for equal teams given the home field advantage. Both sides are dealing with some injuries this week, but there are very few teams that aren’t at this point. The Bengals will likely win this game, but 7-points is too much for what should be an evenly played game.
[6.6 Units] Philadelphia Eagles (-3) at home with Vikings - LOSS
6.6 Units – PHI -3 or less
3.3 Units – PHI -3.5
No Action – PHI -4 or more
The Eagles struggled on the road last week against a sneaky good Titans team that we were all over. Wentz, despite the final outcome, looked a lot better in his 2nd week back than he did against the Colts two weeks ago. The main issue last week for the Eagles was their offensive line, which has been a surprising problem for them thus far in the season. They need to get things cleaned up, but we are confident that will happen as they develop the type of consistency that led the same group of guys to a Super Bowl victory last year. On the other sideline, the Vikings have struggled with the same issue. The Minny line has been horrible in 2018 and they don’t exactly have the guys up there that inspire a lot of hope for getting it dramatically turned around. Their defense has suffered at times because of the turnovers and lack of ability to possess the ball by the offense. Both of these teams have great defenses, both have been struggling with their O-lines, but the key difference is the Eagles have the guys to get the job done. This should be a defensively dominated game by both sides, but we like the home field advantage and special teams’ edge to favor the Eagles getting a 4 to 7-point win.
[6.6 Units] Washington Redskins (+6.5) at New Orleans - LOSS
6.6 Units – WSH +6 or more
3.3 Units – WSH +4.5 to 5.5
No Action – WSH +4 or less
The Redskins have the makings of team that could quietly compete for the NFC East title. Alex Smith remains one of the most underrated players in the league despite his impressive track record of consistently winning and putting up very clean stats. We, and others, projected the offensive output of the Redskins to remain above league average, but one thing we were not anticipating was the early season emergence of this Redskins pass D. The Redskins, along with the Panthers, had the first bye week of the season during Week 4, so they are plenty rested and have had 14 days to prepare for the Drew Brees-led Saints O. The system value here is not a result of the Redskins shutting down the Saints…that is not going to happen. The Saints offense is too balanced and has too many ++ players to ever fully be stopped. However, the same thing can not be said about the Saints defense. This game will have a lot of scoring, but the Redskins will be able to put up a lot of points on the Saints D and they should be able to create enough stops for the game to stay within one possession.
[5.5 Units] Baltimore Ravens (-3) at Cleveland - LOSS
5.5 Units – BAL -3 or less
2.75 Units – BAL -3.5
No Action – BAL -4 or more
The Cleveland Browns have come a long way in one year, but unfortunately for their fans, they still have some ground to cover before they are competiting for playoff appearances. The Ravens, on the other hand, look poised for another strong season with a top-5 defense and Joe Flacco looking like he once again gives a shit. Turns out, if you draft a QB high, the lazy, highly paid starter may get some added motivation…who knew?! That is really where the models are pulling in the value in favor of the black birds for this game; the Ravens offense. On the defensive side of the ball, both groups are playing very well in 2018. The key differentiator is how these teams perform with the ball in their hands. Cleveland is still in our bottom-3 offensively vs. the Ravens who are right about league average. Baker appears to be a slight upgrade over Tyrod, but his volatility is going to be much higher. Tyrod is conservative with the ball to the point that it smothers his teams own offensive production, which is very different than the way Mayfield plays the game. As a fan, watching Baker slang it around is undoubtedly more exciting. However, there is also a downside to that gun-slinger mentality and some of that is going to manifest itself in the form of turnovers. The Ravens defenses over the years have feasted on turnovers and that remains true today. Getting Jimmy Smith back, with a couple weeks of film on Baker, is a definitive advantage to Baltimore. We think this will be a 4 to 6-point game, but the Ravens will get the job done.
[5.5 Units] Tennessee Titans (-3.5) at Buffalo - LOSS
5.5 Units – TEN -6.5 or less
2.75 Units – TEN -7
No Action – TEN -7.5 or more
Buffalo is really, really, really bad. We don’t think we are telling you anything you don’t already know, but that’s just a simple fact at this point. We often talk about double-digit lines being reserved for teams that are “worst in the league”… Buffalo is the worst team in the league by a pretty wide margin. Tennessee has been playing inspired football and really didn’t have much roster turnover at all from their playoff squad last year. Now that they are healthy up front (outside of Delanie Walker) and Mariota appears to be 100%, we think they should easily maintain the on-field production they’ve had. Defensively, the Titans numbers don’t jump off the page right now, but they have played a pretty difficult schedule and are still off to a 3-1 start. We think tomorrow could be the day those defensive stats take a big leap after they dominate a completely inept Buffalo offense.
[4.4 Units] Dallas Cowboys (+3) at Houston - PUSH
5.5 Units – DAL +3 or more
No Action – DAL +2.5 or less
The Cowboys are still struggling to find consistent offensive output due to Dak Prescott’s inefficiencies so far this season, but they showed last week that they can win while relying almost single handily on one man: Zeke. Once the ground game was established against the Lions the Cowboys were able to make some chunk gains through the air and seemed to be more creative with their play design to make things a bit easier for Dak. The Texans D has looked a lot worse than what we expected heading into the year. They have been absolutely torched through the air even though they have, on paper, what should easily be a top-5 pass rush. This is a Sunday Night primetime game and these in-state teams aren’t very fond of each other despite being in different conferences. This should be a tightly played contest and the systems give the edge to Dallas getting the three points in a game that will likely have a final outcome, one way or the other, under that margin.