Week 5 NFL RedZone Picks: The Culmination of a Chaotic Week
It has been another wild week in the NFL. First we had more positive Covid-19 tests in New England and Tennessee, moving their games to Monday and Tuesday, respectively. Then the Buccaneers threw a 13-point lead against the Chicago Bears. Friday saw the Jets sent home because of a presumptive positive test, before the Chiefs and Bears both had members of their organization post initial positive tests on Saturday. The fallout of it all is that we now have a strange looking NFL slate, with three games spread between Monday and Tuesday. That has left just seven games in play for our Week 5 RedZone picks, but nonetheless here is this weeks selections and accumulator.
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Time for a Mahomes Explosion
We start with the team from the land of the gamble, the Las Vegas Raiders. Or rather should I say, we start with looking at the Raiders defense who have given up, in order; 30 to the Panthers, 24 to the Saints, 36 to the Patriots and 30 to the Bills. To put that in perspective, Patrick Mahomes and this vaunted Chiefs offense have scored less points than the Raiders have conceded so far this season.
However, the Raiders have managed to hang about in all four games, winning two of them and it is safe to say the are going to have to get at least 30 points to get anywhere near the Chiefs in this one. Given the return of Henry Ruggs III and right tackle Trent Brown it is exceedingly possible that the Raiders could at least challenge that mark. Especially given that I expect the Chiefs to score at least 35, then the fact that the Raiders will only need to score 21 to cover the over 55.5 points (19/20 with 888 and Unibet) is exceedingly appealing.
Same rivalry, NEW wrinkle
In the AFC North, we have the Baltimore Ravens against the Cincinnati Bengals. Now the Ravens are a better side than the Bengals in every facet and will almost certainly win this game. However, this is not the same Bengals that were awful enough to claim Joe Burrow with the number one pick of the 2020 NFL Draft. They look competitive in every game and are a couple of ball bounces away from having the same 3-1 record as the Ravens.
Joe Burrow looks like someone that can cope with the pressure that the Ravens will be bringing, although having a top three all-purpose running back in Joe Mixon certainly helps. As a result, I expect this to be closer than the Bengals +11.5 (9/10 with PaddyPower) line that is available.
Allen the PICK for Washington
Washington currently sit second in the NFC East, with Ron Rivera suddenly seeing an actual chance of winning the division based more on the self-destruction of the rest of the division than the actual competency of his own roster. As a result, Rivera has binned off Dwayne Haskins for Kyle Allen, who he trusted enough to both start for 12 games in Carolina last year and then give the Panthers a fifth-round pick to bring Allen with him to Washington.
Anyone that saw him pick the Buccaneers apart at White Hart Lane last year can see that Allen, when on form, can be a competent quarterback. However, he may be able to challenge Daniel Jones now as ‘King of the Turnover’ in the NFC East. For Carolina last year Allen had 16 picks and 13 fumbles (seven lost), that’s almost two turnovers per start! The sheer power of the Rams running game means that Goff will not even get the opportunity to turn the ball over and there hasn’t been a single fumble by any of the Rams running backs. As a result, I don’t see how Washington to commit the 1st Turnover (7/10 with William Hill) doesn’t land.
Run Carson, RUN!
When is a bye not a bye?
When you spend most of the week thinking you are playing the Tennessee Titans and that is what the Pittsburgh Steelers have had to deal with before now having to plan for the battle of Pennsylvania at home to the injury-ridden Philadelphia Eagles.
It seems forever since we have seen the Pittsburgh Steelers, so it is easy to forget that they are the consensus third best team in the AFC behind the Chiefs and Ravens with a huge part of that being one of the most complete defensive units in the entire league. Which should be a scary thought for this completely decimated Eagles offensive line.
One thing Carson Wentz has realised in the last two weeks is that if you have no offensive line and no wide receivers then you had better run for your life. In the first two games of the year he only rushed three times. However, he then rushed for 65 yards against the Bengals and 37 yards against the 49ers last week. Therefore, a line of Carson Wentz over 14.5 yards rushing (4/5 with William Hill) seems rather small.
The 0-4 Atlanta Falcons are favourites to beat the Carolina Panthers (11/10 with PaddyPower). It’s understandable because they have more talent than the Panthers. However, they showed that they had the offensive firepower than the Dallas Cowboys…and lost. They also showed that they had far more talent than the Chicago Bears…and lost.
At some point, you must accept that the Falcons are mentally shot to pieces. I can’t see a situation where they can hold on to a victory over anyone who does not contain the name New York in their moniker. The Falcons lose and Dan Quinn probably loses his job.
Three years ago, Jacksonville had one of the most feared defenses in the league, yet now, it’s an embarrassment. In the last three weeks they have given up over 30 points to the Titans, Dolphins and Bengals. DeShaun Watson is a better QB right now than any of those teams have. Even without DeAndre Hopkins it is tough to make an argument that any of those three offenses are more explosive than the Texans has the potential to be.
Freed from the Bill O’ Brien era, against one of the worst defenses in the league, the Texans should again send the Jaguars spinning for the fourth consecutive week as the Texans put over 30.5 points (Evens with William Hill) on them.
Accumulator: Raiders @ Chiefs Over 55.5pts, Bengals +11.5pts, Washington to commit the 1st turnover, Panthers ML, Texans Over 30.5 points
NAP & Other Single: Wentz Over 14.5 yards rushing
NFL BETTING ANALYST
A Welshman exiled in Luton, Steve Moore has been a Buccaneers fan ever since he thought a stadium with a pirate ship was cool (he was only 9 at the time!).
Steve has also hosted podcasts on both the NFL and British Universities football and was the statistician for 2008 College Bowl finalists, Staffordshire Stallions