Stuckey: My Favorite Week 9 NFL Bets
Steven Flynn-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Josh Jacobs
Stuckey highlights his three favorite NFL picks for Week 9 below.
Let’s run through how he’s betting Lions-Raiders, Buccaneers-Seahawks and Packers-Chargers.
Odds as of Sunday morning and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).
Raiders -2.5 vs. Lions
The Raiders have a certain stigma surrounding them based on preseason expectations. People just refuse to believe that Jon Gruden actually has a pretty good team. It’s not great or a contender, but it’s not bad at all.
And despite an absolutely vicious schedule to start the year, the Raiders will return to their home stadium for the first time since Sept. 15 with a 3-4 record — they really should be 4-3 after last week’s game against Houston.
It starts with the offensive line, which despite dealing with injury issues all season, has performed at a high level throughout 2019. Per Pro Football Focus, the Raiders have allowed a league-low 44 pressures (tied with Baltimore) and rank in the top three in overall pass blocking efficiency.
The injury to center Rodney Hudson hurts, but this is still a solid front. Plus, they will be facing a Detroit defensive front that just doesn’t excel against the run, ranking in the bottom five of the NFL in adjusted line yards, power rank and stuff rank, per Football Outsiders.
That’s not ideal against an offensive front that generates push in front of up-and-coming premier back Josh Jacobs, who’s breaking tackles on 28% of his carries and leads all running backs (min. 50 carries) in PFF’s Elusive Rating ahead of only Alvin Kamara and Chris Carson.
Jacobs should keep the Raiders ahead of the sticks all game and break a few long ones.
Meanwhile the Lions don’t have much running game to speak of, especially after losing Kerryon Johnson to injury, and will face an Oakland defense that is decent against the rush, allowing only 3.7 yards per rush, which ranks fifth in the league.
And when Derek Carr does need to throw it, as I mentioned before, he should have time to do so in a clean pocket to find his receivers against a depleted Lion secondary.
The Lions traded starting safety Quandre Diggs to Seattle and may be without their other in Tracy Walker, who didn’t practice on Wednesday. That’s less than ideal, especially when your No. 1 corner and star lockdown man Slay is also dealing with a hamstring injury.
In regards to the total, it’s over or nothing in my eyes. Oakland should gash on the ground with Jacobs and through the air against a team that doesn’t get much pressure (26th in adjusted sack rate) with a depleted secondary.
And as my colleague mentioned above, Stafford and his bandmates on the outside should shred through the air against a Raiders team that gets almost no consistent pressure and struggles to defend in the secondary. Both offenses should shine on Sunday.
In a game where both teams should move the ball through the air, the difference will be the Raiders’ advantage in the run game. [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]
Buccaneers +5 at Seahawks
This is a great spot to buy low on a Bucs team that’s much better than their record indicates. Tampa could easily be 4-3 and the entire narrative surrounding this team would be different. Seattle is sitting at 6-2 with a +12 point differential while Tampa is at 2-5 with a -16.
Conversely, the Seahawks have had a number of games break their way. Five of their wins have come by one possession and four came by a total of eight points.
Realistically, Seattle should also be sitting closer to 4-3. And if this was a battle of two 4-3 teams, I don’t think we’d see -6 here. So, not only is it a bargain buy, but also a sell on Seattle, which I’ve done each of the past three weeks as well.
From a yards-per-play perspective, Tampa has allowed 5.6 while Seattle has given up 6.4 (tied with Arizona for third-worst in the NFL). Only the two winless teams, Miami and Cincy, have allowed more on a per-play basis. Seattle has been stronger on the other side of the ball, averaging 6.1 yards per play (11th), but the Bucs aren’t too far behind at 5.8 (17th).
From a matchup perspective, this is a good one for Tampa. Seattle wants to run it as much as any team in the NFL (one of only five that average more than 30 rush attempts per game along with the 49ers, Ravens, Vikings and Colts).
The Bucs defense excels at stopping the run, ranking No. 1 overall in yards per rush at 3.0 with the top rush defense DVOA (per Football Outsiders). The Todd Bowles scheme and some key acquisitions have given Tampa a dominant front seven that should stuff Seattle’s run game.
Wilson should get his through the air with some big plays against a very suspect Bucs pass defense, which is the clear weak area of this team.
However, I also think Jameis Winston and Tampa’s dynamic duo on the outside of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin can keep up against a Seattle defense that doesn’t generate much pressure (27th in adjusted sack rate) and is decimated with injuries in the secondary.
Winston should be able to exploit Seattle deep on a few occasions with his explosive receivers. And it’s also possible that corner Tre Flowers doesn’t play.
I’m taking the points with an undervalued Bucs team that is more than capable on the road with wins over the Rams and Panthers. Plus, Bruce Arians is no stranger to winning in Seattle, having won four of five meetings outright in Seattle against — each as an underdog and three of the four wins as a dog of more than a touchdown.
Coaches vs. Wilson in Seattle
- Bruce Arians: 4-1 against the spread (80%) | 4-1 straight up
- All other coaches: 21-31-3 ATS (40.4%) | 10-45 SU
Moneyline underdogs vs. Wilson in Seattle
- Arians: 4-1 +$1,056
- Others: 8-40 -$1,985 (losing by over 10 points per game)
I’d take anything +4 or better here. [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]
Chargers +4 vs. Packers
This is a good time to buy an undervalued team Chargers team while selling the Packers, who I’ve been high on since the beginning of the season but are now getting a little too much love in the market.
Green Bay was my only preseason Super Bowl future, but I have to call it like I see it: This team has been very fortunate all season, from a pretty lucky win over the Vikings to getting a significantly undermanned-Chiefs team last week.
The Chargers offense hasn’t been pretty, but as I mentioned above, getting Okung back will do wonders. Plus, Melvin Gordon finally has a few games under his belt after missing so much time, so you should start to see more production out of the Wisconsin product as he gets up to game speed. And there are still some major holes in the Packers run defense, which is allowing 4.8 yards per carry (28th in the NFL).
The Chargers also hired a new offensive coordinator, which can only help. It’ll also serve as an element of surprise working in their favor as the Packers will have no idea what changes and new wrinkles are coming.
The Chargers defense has also been decimated by injuries, but you’re starting to see some improvement from a lot of the replacements after getting some valuable experience. This is still a unit with a formidable pass rush and two rock-solid corners in Desmond King in the slot and Casey Hayward on the outside.
Also, for whatever reason, the Chargers have consistently started slow in recent seasons and then turned it around about this time. Not surprisingly, Rivers is 8-2 ATS over the past three Novembers.
I also think the Chargers are a solid teaser piece, taking them from +3 or +3.5 up to +9 or +9.5. Despite their 3-5 record, they’ve been in every game. Throwing out a blowout win over the winless Dolphins, their other seven games have been decided by one score.
Rivers has been profitable as an underdog throughout his career at 42-31-4 ATS (57.5%) for an excellent 12.8% ROI. And if you teased the Chargers in all of those games, he would’ve covered the tease 82% of the time.
Like most Chargers games, I expect this to come down to the final possession, so I love the tease option — I personally teased them with the Jags — and grabbing over a field goal with the home dog. [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]