4 NFL Underdogs To Bet To Cover Their Spreads: Broncos, Seahawks, 49ers & Texans
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images. Pictured: Drew Lock
NFL Underdog Bets
Chris Raybon, a senior NFL and fantasy football analyst, highlights his favorite Week 10 NFL picks below. He has a 338-254-20 (57.1%) all-time record on NFL bets he’s tracked in the Action app.
Texans +4 at Browns
Kickoff: 1 p.m. ET | More Game Info
Home-field advantage has been non-existent this season — road teams are 68-65-1 straight up and 72-62 (53.7%) against the spread, covering by an average of 1.55 points per game — so there’s no reason this Browns team should be getting more than a field goal.
While the Texans face the NFL’s toughest early-season slate, the Browns racked up wins against the Colts in a game in which Philip Rivers gifted them nine points, against the 2-6 Bengals (twice) while giving up 30-plus points and failing to cover in either, a Cowboys team that the Browns still allowed 38 points to, and the Washington Football team.
Cleveland is getting Nick Chubb back, but the Browns’ mix of a strong running game, home field and windy weather against a bad defense was supposed to help them against the Raiders — they lost, 16-6. Part of the issue two weeks ago was that when it did come time to pass, Baker Mayfield was the worse of the two quarterbacks in the wind, completing only 47% of his passes and getting out gained on the ground by Derek Carr, 41-29.
Without Odell Beckham Jr. and facing Deshaun Watson and Co., this is another matchup in which the opponent will have the more dynamic QB and passing game.
We should also expect some positive regression from the Texans, who are just 1-7 ATS. Per our Bet Labs data, road dogs covering 30% or less of their games are 305-231-19 ATS since 2003.
Broncos +3.5 at Raiders
Kickoff: 4:05 p.m. ET | More Game Info
The Broncos are getting some key pieces back in cornerbacks A.J Bouye and Bryce Callahan, as well as guard Graham Glasgow.
With Drew Lock establishing a rapport with Jerry Jeudy, the Broncos should be able to score on the Raiders’ 30th-ranked defense in Football Outsiders’ DVOA, and Bouye and Callahan should help Vic Fangio’s defense limit the Raiders enough to keep it close or pull off the upset against Jon Gruden’s team. According to our Bet Labs data, Gruden is 22-37 (37%) ATS off a win and 6-18 (25%) ATS off a multi-game winning streak since 2003.
I like Denver down to +3.
Seahawks +2.5 at Rams
Kickoff: 4:25 p.m. ET | More Game Info
The Seahawks defense is a problem, but Jared Goff is averaging a career-low 7.2 average depth of target and may not be able to take full advantage of a scheme that will likely send blitzes at him a lot more than the Cover 3 scheme he’s had success against in the past against Seattle.
The Rams defense also hasn’t been tested much, as it faced the entire NFC East and Tua Tagovailoa in his first start, but we did see this unit get torched for five total touchdowns by Josh Allen in Week 3.
Russell Wilson won’t turn it over four times every week and is 20-10 ATS in his career as a road dog.
49ers +10 at Saints
Kickoff: 4:25 p.m. ET | More Game Info
This line is unsurprisingly large after both of these teams had opposite results in prime time last week, with San Francisco getting destroyed at home by Green Bay, 34-17, on Thursday Night Football then with New Orleans routing Tampa Bay, 38-3, on Sunday Night Football.
It’s time to take advantage of the opposing public perceptions, though, as the 49ers are on a long week and will be much better prepared with left tackle Trent Williams as well as wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Kendrick Bourne coming off the Reserve/COVID-19 list.
On the telecast last week, FOX commentator Troy Aikman noted that Kyle Shanahan had to rip up his entire gameplan on a short week after learning of the players who would miss due to COVID-19 precautions.
Quarterback Nick Mullens is also one of the league’s better backups — if not the best — averaging 8.4 yards per attempt for his career.
And on defense, San Francisco still ranks 12th in DVOA despite its injuries, and is especially strong at stoping the run (sixth in DVOA), which puts the onus on Drew Brees to complete longer passes than his average depth of target of 5.8 yards.
If you saw Dan Orlovsky’s rant, you know Tampa Bay had a terrible game plan last week against New Orleans, but that shouldn’t happen with Shanahan, who can be counted on to prepare his team well — even when they travel.
According to our Bet Labs data, Shanahan-coached teams have coveted 61.9% as a road dog in his career, including an outright win as a dog in New Orleans last season.
I like the 49ers down to +9.