NFL Betting: NFL Matchups for Week 3

Here at Bang the Book, we have all of the top matchups of the 2013 NFL betting campaign covered! Today, we’re taking a look at the best matchups for Week 3!

Kansas City Chiefs (2-0 SU, 1-1 ATS) @ Philadelphia Eagles (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS)
Spread: Philadelphia -3, Total: 50.5

Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA – Thursday, September 19th, 8:30 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Head Coach Andy Reid returns! It’s not taking very long for Reid to make his valiant return to the City of Brotherly Love, as he is coaching just his third game with his new team from Kansas City and is going to be taking on the Eagles in what should be a great game. We have a big time concern that Philly is playing its third game in just 17 days, especially with the way that it plays offense under Head Coach Chip Kelly. The Chiefs are looking for a rare 3-0 start that would almost certainly ensure that they will at least be contenders for the playoffs this year, while the Eagles are just trying to get back above .500 and ensure that they will be at least tied for first place in the NFC East for another week. Interestingly enough, Coach Reid has never lost a game in this series in his career.

Houston Texans (2-0 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ Baltimore Ravens (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS)
Spread: Houston -2.5, Total: 44.5

M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, MD – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Texans have never won a game in Baltimore in their history, but they are going to have a chance to do the job on Sunday now that they are favorites on the road. It’s a rare place for the two-time AFC South winners to be in, knowing that many think they should be no worse than the second or the third best team in the conference this season. The Ravens aren’t in the same boat by any stretch of the imagination, as they have played two relatively poor offensive games, and they might not have RB Ray Rice to rely upon after he left last week with a hip injury. These games between last year’s division winners are always crucial, and this one is no exception whatsoever. The Texans won their first ever game in this series last year when they whooped up on the eventual Super Bowl champs 43-13 at Reliant Stadium.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-2 SU, 1-1 ATS) @ New England Patriots (2-0 SU, 0-2 ATS)
Spread: New England -7, Total: 44

Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, MA – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Bucs know that they are in a lot of trouble right now, and we wouldn’t be surprised if he is having a bad game if QB Josh Freeman is ultimately benched and perhaps put out of his misery by Head Coach Greg Schiano. Tampa Bay needs wins in a bad way right now, and this is a tough place to get them. It’s only a matter of time until the Patriots end up putting 30+ on the board against much of the rest of the league, and when that happens, the AFC could be in some trouble. TE Rob Gronkowski is probably going to be held out another week. These two teams have met twice since 2000, and the two games were as ugly as could be. The Pats won 28-0 in ’05 here in Foxboro and 35-7 at Raymond James Stadium in 2009.

Green Bay Packers (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS) @ Cincinnati Bengals (1-1 SU, 1-0-1 ATS)
Spread: Green Bay -2.5, Total: 48.5

Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, OH – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Bengals are tied atop the AFC North right now at 1-1, and there is a real chance that they could start to run away and hide just a bit in the division if they can get on a roll. All four of the teams are underdogs in the division this week, and 1-2 might be good enough to take the lead at this point. That said, QB Andy Dalton and the gang want this victory to send a statement that they indeed can play with the big boys. The Packers are coming off of a 38-20 win over the Redskins last week, but they haven’t proven much. We know they can score. We know that their defense stinks. Is that combo enough to win the NFC North once again this year? The Bengals have actually won two straight games in this series, and they’re looking for a third on Sunday.

San Diego Chargers (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) @ Tennessee Titans (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: Tennessee -3, Total: 43.5

LP Field, Nashville, TN – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Titans are opening up their home portion of the schedule this week when they take on San Diego, a team that is going to be taking a second straight very long road trip. These two teams both share a lot in common this year. They both had big leads against the Texans and blew them, and they both went on the road to the Keystone State and beat teams outright that they probably had no business beating on paper. QB Philip Rivers and QB Jake Locker are both looking to revive their careers, and both of these teams have defenses that are probably unfairly underrated. The Chargers are 8-0 SU and ATS in this series dating back to 1993, and they have never lost a game here in Nashville in team history.

Cleveland Browns (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ Minnesota Vikings (0-2 SU, 1-1 ATS)
Spread: Minnesota -5.5, Total: 40.5

Mall of America Field at the HHH Metrodome, Minneapolis, MN – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Browns are going to be playing without QB Brandon Weeden in this one, as he has a thumb injury and will be sitting on the sidelines while QB Brian Hoyer takes snaps. It’s not a good proposition for a Cleveland team that has literally gotten its quarterback killed at this point, especially knowing that the run defense for the Vikings is probably one of the most underrated in all of football. RB Trent Richardson could have some tough sledding ahead. QB Christian Ponder is considered to be on the hot seat as well, and he has a tougher defense than you’d think to try to get the ball up and down the field against. The Vikes did cover last week against the Bears, but they have two return touchdowns to thank for that. These two have only met twice since the Browns came back into existence, and Minnesota is 2-0 SU and ATS, winning both games by double digits.

New York Giants (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ Carolina Panthers (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS)
Spread: Carolina -1, Total: 45.5

Bank of America Field, Charlotte, NC – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Someone is leaving this game at 0-3, and that’s the point that we know that there should be a real panic put in place. Carolina started off the season in bad form last year, but they ended up as one of the average teams in the league after a good close to the season. Another slow start will put Head Coach Ron Rivera in a heck of a lot of trouble. The Giants meanwhile, still don’t have a running game, and they still haven’t figured out how to hold onto the football. They’ve got 10 turnovers in two weeks, and Head Coach Tom Coughlin has to be pulling his hair out. The good news for New York is that it has been able to manhandle the Panthers in this series of late, going 4-1 SU and ATS since 2006, including posting a 36-7 win last season on Thursday Night Football here in Charlotte, holding QB Cam Newton to just six yards on six carries.

Arizona Cardinals (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) @ New Orleans Saints (2-0 SU, 1-1 ATS)
Spread: New Orleans -7, Total: 48.5

Mercedes Benz Superdome, New Orleans, LA – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Saints are off and running to a 2-0 start, but they have done the job with their defense, not their offense. It’s strange to think that QB Drew Brees and the gang haven’t put more than 23 on the board all year long, but it’s also equally strange to think that neither team has gotten to 20 yet that they have played against. Arizona has looked good for the most part, and it hung on and beat a game Lions team last week in the dying moments. There are some concerns over WR Larry Fitzgerald and his availability for this one after suffering a hamstring injury two weeks ago that kept him on the sidelines for the fourth quarter of the Detroit game. The home team has won four meetings in a row both SU and ATS in this series, though the last meeting was back in 2010.

St. Louis Rams (1-1 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ Dallas Cowboys (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: Dallas -4, Total: 47

Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

We haven’t seen a ton out of the Cowboys that we have liked this year. Dallas is 2-0 ATS and 1-1 SU, but the team shouldn’t have really covered against the Chiefs last week, and it only barely hung on to beat the Giants in spite of the fact that it forced six turnovers. The Rams might be 0-2 ATS, but they have really fought hard in a narrow win over the Cardinals and a closer than you probably thought loss to the Falcons last week. The history of this series is a strange one, to say the least. Prior to this year, the previous eight meetings all featured a spread of nine points or more. The last four games have all been decided by double digits, and interestingly enough, the Rams won two of those games SU as nine and 10 point underdogs, including capturing a ‘W’ here in Dallas in the 2005 season.

Detroit Lions (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS) @ Washington Redskins (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS)
Spread: Washington -2.5, Total: 49

FedEx Field, Landover, MD – Sunday, September 22nd, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Unless you’re more than 78 years old, you’ve never seen the Lions win a road game against the Redskins. And of course, we’re all still waiting for the first ever win in DC for the franchise as well, as at that point, the Redskins were playing in Boston, not in DC. Of course, Detroit does have two straight wins in this series, though both games were at home. Washington badly needs this one as an 0-2 team that can’t afford to slip to 0-3, but QB Robert Griffin III still doesn’t look totally comfortable to us after his ACL surgery in the offseason. QB Matthew Stafford is having no such problems, and with RB Reggie Bush being given a relatively clean bill of health, he could be a huge factor as well. The home team is 5-2 ATS in the last seven clashes of these NFC foes.

Atlanta Falcons (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS) @ Miami Dolphins (2-0 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: Miami -1, Total: 44.5

Sun Life Stadium, Miami, FL – Sunday, September 22nd, 4:05 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Over 70% of the betting public is on the Falcons in this game, and we aren’t all that sure that is justified when push comes to shove. Miami has started off with two road wins, albeit against teams that probably aren’t going to finish the year above .500 (though Indy did make the playoffs last year and go 7-1 at home). QB Ryan Tannehill is doing a good job spreading the ball around, and WR Mike Wallace is a lot happier after he had his first 100+ yard game as a member of the Fins last week. Atlanta is a mess at the moment. DB Asante Samuel has a thigh injury, RB Steven Jackson is out with a thigh injury for at least the next two weeks, DE Kroy Biermann and FB Bradie Ewing were just put on IR after getting hurt last week, and WR Roddy White, though playing, clearly isn’t at 100% at this point. Though it really could be a devastating game for the Falcons, they can at least rest easily that they are 6-0-1 ATS in the last seven games in this series dating back to 1986.

Buffalo Bills (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) @ New York Jets (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: New York -2.5, Total: 39

MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ – Sunday, September 22nd, 4:25 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Remember how similar the Chargers and Titans were? The Jets and Bills are even more eerily similar. Both of these clubs lost tight games to the Patriots that could have been won. Both teams have a come-from-behind victory under their belts with scores in the last 30 seconds of the game that turned a defeat into a win. Both teams have rookie quarterbacks. And the truth of the matter is that both of these teams might be a lot better than you would have probably thought at the start of the year. The road team is 8-3 ATS in the last 11 games in this AFC East rivalry, while the Bills are just 2-5 ATS in the last seven meetings. Remember that New York is 1-5 ATS in games following an SU defeat, which is what the case was last week on the road in Foxboro.

Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ Seattle Seahawks (2-0 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: Seattle -20, Total: 40.5

CenturyLink Field, Seattle, WA – Sunday, September 22nd, 4:25 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Over the course of the last 15 years, there have only been nine games in which teams have been favored by at least 20 points, and a lot of those were held by the perfect Patriots from several years ago. The Seahawks though, are the next in line, and for good reason. They have the most dominating defense in the league statistically right now, and they are playing against a team that isn’t going to have many of its key players on offense and flat out stunk on offense even when they were all in the lineup. Jacksonville is a wreck, and its loss against Oakland last week might have already mathematically clinched up the #1 pick in next year’s NFL Draft. That said, 20 is a lot of points. However, the last time that these two teams squared off was in 2009 right here at CenturyLink Field. The result? 41-0 Seahawks.

Indianapolis Colts (1-1 SU, 0-2 ATS) @ San Francisco 49ers (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS)
Spread: San Francisco -10.5, Total: 46

Candlestick Park, San Francisco, CA – Sunday, September 22nd, 4:25 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

You would think that the 49ers and the Colts should be putting on a good show in this one at the Stick, but the oddsmakers are under the impression that this game is going to be a blowout. The Niners are largely accepted as one of the best teams in the game, but they were really taken behind the shed last week on the road in Seattle. QB Andrew Luck has been under a ton of pressure these first two weeks of the year, and the pleas of Bill Polian to protect his franchise quarterback are essentially falling on deaf ears. The line is a nightmare and will have a long day against the San Fran front seven. These two teams are relatively split in their histories, but the common thread is that most of the games are close. Four of the last six have been decided by six points or fewer.

Chicago Bears (2-0 SU, 0-1-1 ATS) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (0-2 SU, 0-2 ATS)
Spread: Chicago -2.5, Total: 40

Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA – Sunday, September 22nd, 8:20 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

It’s not all that often that you see the Steelers as underdogs on their own turf. In fact, the last time that Pittsburgh was an underdog at home in a game that QB Ben Roethlisberger started was back on January 5th, 2008 against the Jaguars in the playoffs. In fact, the last time that the Steelers were dogs at home in a regular season game was on November 4th, 2004 with Roethlisberger on the field, and at the time, Big Ben was a rookie. Chicago is off to a 2-0 start to the campaign, and Head Coach Marc Trestman and QB Jay Cutler both have to be pleased with the production of the team at this point, including beating the Bengals at home in Week 1. This is the first time that the club has had to go on the road, though. Chicago hasn’t won a game in the Steel City since 1989.

Oakland Athletics (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) @ Denver Broncos (2-0 SU, 2-0 ATS)
Spread: Denver -14.5, Total: 49

Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, CO – Monday, September 23rd, 8:40 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Any other week, the Broncos would be the biggest chalks on the board. This week though, the Seahawks get the nod from that respect. Denver has been plowing through foes, killing the Ravens and Giants in back to back weeks. This is clearly the easiest foe that it is has had to face. Oakland has played respectable ball and is 2-0 against the number this season, but this is the sternest challenge yet. History is definitely on the side of the Raiders, perhaps not so much from an SU standpoint as it is from an ATS standpoint. In games in this series played at Mile High, the Raiders are 6-1 ATS in the last seven years. The road team is 8-2 ATS in the last 10 in this series overall.

Adam Markowitz

is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.

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