Written By Billy Attridge
NFL Week 6 is riddled with important injuries across the board, including multiple at the quarterback position. It’s imperative to properly evaluate all injuries as we move forward, and to understand the significance of each individual injury, as opposed to assigning blanket numbers for each position. So, here are the three games to monitor as we approach kickoff this week. Additionally, we flash forward to take a peak at Vegas look ahead lines for Week 7.
Detroit @ New Orleans -4 (-110):
BetOnline.Ag opened Detroit-3 (+100), and that number did not last long, being pushed out to -4.5/5/6 before we saw some resistance on the dog (quarterback related). Detroit is off a home loss to the Panthers and come into this game with a banged up Matthew Stafford; it looks like he will give it a go, sprained ankle and all. Detroit will need to corral the Saints powerful passing attack (#1 in Pass Success Rate, #4 in Efficiency) if they are to stand a chance this week. While we did see some Detroit money enter the market mid-week, and despite the Lions garnering over 60% of the tickets written at the point. I do not see this number getting back to where it opened. With two-way money coming in at -3 and +6, this number should settle in around -4.5.
Pittsburgh @ Kansas City -4.5 (-110):
The Chiefs opened as low as -2.5 Sunday night in Vegas, shot to as high as -6 before settling in at the current number. With Kansas City, we have to ask: At what point will the market catch up? At what point will they be overvalued? The Steelers are coming off their worst performance of the year (yes, coaching DEFINITELY included), and come in to a hostile venue against a team with playoff revenge from a year ago. This will be the toughest test in terms of pass defense the Chiefs will have seen all year (Steelers #3 in pass defense efficiency), and will be without receiver Conley (out for year), Travis Kelce is dealing with a concussion but will pass protocol, Tyreek Hill has a hamstring bugging him and will be a game-time decision, and Justin Houston is dealing with a calf strain. Certainly, pros laid the early price on the Chiefs, but come game day I believe professional money will be grabbing the Steelers and ultimately this number will close 4.
Tampa Bay @ Arizona Over 45 (-110):
We saw this total open 44.5 (-110) at BetOnline.Ag. Since that point, this number has been bumped up to 45, and I don’t think we’ve seen the last of the move. Both Arizona and Tampa Bay rank in the bottom 3rd of Pass Efficiency Defenses (24th and 27th respectively), while both teams rank in the top ten for Offensive Pace (Arizona 8th, Tampa Bay 1st). Tampa Bay has been efficient throwing the ball this year, while Bruce Arians and Arizona aren’t afraid to chuck it themselves. Adding in the fact that Jameis Winston and Carson Palmer are quarterbacking both teams, we could see some interceptions and short field. This number should continue to rise.
Week 7 Look Lines from Vegas courtesy of Westgate Superbook:
Home Spread Away
Raiders +2.5 Chiefs
Browns N/A Titans
Colts +3 Jaguars
Steelers -7 Bengals
Vikings -3 Ravens
Dolphins -4.5 Jets
Bills -2 Buccaneers
Bears +4.5 Panthers
Packers -6.5 Saints
Rams* -3 Cardinals
49ers +4.5 Cowboys
Giants +7.5 Seattle
Chargers +2.5 Broncos
Patriots -4 Falcons
Eagles -4 Redskins
*Game played in London, England