NFL Betting: NFL Matchups for Week 5

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 5!

Buffalo Bills (2-2 SU, 3-1 ATS) @ Cleveland Browns (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Spread: Cleveland -3.5, Total: 40.5

FirstEnergy Stadium, Cleveland, OH – Thursday, October 3rd, 8:30 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Admit it: When the NFL schedule came out, you circled this game as the one that you weren’t going to watch because the game stunk and the MLB playoffs were going to be on. Whistling a different tune now, eh? The Browns and Bills might ultimately turn out to win 10 games between them this year, but for now, they’re both 2-2, both in the thick of the playoff fight, and somehow, on some parallel universe, the Browns are a win tonight away from having the lead in the AFC North all by themselves for at least a couple days. QB EJ Manuel and QB Brian Hoyer are both going to have to watch out for a lot of pressure coming their way from the opposing defense, and whichever defense gets more heat on the quarterback is probably the one that is going to lead their team to victory. Buffalo is 4-2 SU and 3-3 ATS all-time in this series since the revival of the Browns, and there have been some ugly, ugly games in that mix.

New England Patriots (4-0 SU, 2-2 ATS) @ Cincinnati Bengals (2-2 SU, 2-1-1 ATS)
Spread: Cincinnati -1, Total: 45

Paul Brown Stadium, Cincinnati, OH – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

What are the oddsmakers saying right now about the 4-0 Patriots to make them underdogs on the road against a 2-2 team that really hasn’t looked all that sharp in recent weeks? Perhaps the loss of DT Vince Wilfork will turn out to mean a lot more than you would originally think. Wilfork is a monster on the inside, and his absence for the rest of the year might leave a lot of holes in the running game for a lot of teams. RB Giovani Bernard has basically taken over as the preferred tailback in the Queen City, and he could be in for a bust out game in this one. The Bengals have been beaten and covered in three straight by the Pats, and in all three of those games, QB Tom Brady and the gang have put up at least 34 points dating back to 2006.

Detroit Lions (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS) @ Green Bay Packers (1-2 SU, 1-2 ATS)
Spread: Green Bay -7, Total: 53.5

Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

If there was ever to be a time for the Lions to figure out how to go on the road and win a game at Lambeau Field, this would be the game. This has been a series that has been devastatingly bad for the Lions in the past, and this one many figure to be no exception. However, we have to remember that the Pack do only have one win at this point in the season, and a loss in this game could be damning. Green Bay has already been beaten by both Cincinnati and San Francisco, and a defeat in this game would leave it two and a half games out of first place a quarter of the way into the season. QB Aaron Rodgers and the offense should have a field day in this one, but that doesn’t mean that it is going to be enough to hold off an offense featuring QB Matthew Stafford, WR Calvin Johnson, and a dynamic pair of backs in RB Reggie Bush and RB Joique Bell.

Seattle Seahawks (4-0 SU, 4-0 ATS) @ Indianapolis Colts (3-1 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Spread: Seattle -3, Total: 43.5

Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

These 1:00 ET road games for West Coast teams going to the East Coast are tough, and they’re especially tough when they come in back to back weeks. That’s what Seattle has to face in this one, but if it is really the best team in the NFC and perhaps the best team in the NFL, this is a game that would be won. Indy hasn’t played a game at home since losing to the Dolphins in Week 2, and it would love to make amends for that in this one. Beating the Seahawks would give the opportunity to not only pull ahead in the AFC South, but to put the Texans two games in the rearview mirror. Seattle has a little more leeway, and if this one is lost, it really isn’t all that big of a deal. The Colts have covered three of the last four in this series, but to show just how irrelevant that is, QB Peyton Manning quarterbacked those games.

Baltimore Ravens (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS) @ Miami Dolphins (3-1 SU, 3-1 ATS)
Spread: Miami -3, Total: 43.5

Sun Life Stadium, Miami, FL – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

QB Joe Flacco threw five picks last week on the road against the Bills, and if he does that again in this game, his team is going to get killed. The Ravens just don’t look right at the moment. They aren’t anywhere near the team that won the Super Bowl last year, but the argument could at least be made that they don’t look that much worse than they did last year at this time. Meanwhile in South Beach, the Dolphins are looking for their fourth win in their last five games, and the opportunity is there to make up that game that was just lost to the now perfect Patriots. Baltimore has won and covered three straight in this series, beating the Fins by at least two TDs in each of those games, including winning a game 27-9 in the playoffs in this stadium in 2009.

New Orleans Saints (4-0 SU, 3-1 ATS) @ Chicago Bears (3-1 SU, 1-2-1 ATS)
Spread: New Orleans -1, Total: 48.5

Soldier Field, Chicago, IL – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Many are getting on the bandwagon of the Saints right now, but perhaps it is a bit too late for that. For as good as New Orleans has looked, its schedule hasn’t been that bad, and its one road game, it looked horrid against a bad Tampa Bay team that is in total disarray. The Bears are a darn good team, and though they were beaten for the first time last week, they know what they have to do in order to get the job done, and they have the skills to do it. We’ve been waiting for QB Jay Cutler to really bust out, and this might finally be the game in which he does it. Cutler is completing a very high percentage of his passes to the outside to his top receivers, and that could be huge come Sunday. The home team has won four straight in this series and is 3-0-1 ATS in that span of time.

Philadelphia Eagles (1-3 SU, 1-3 ATS) @ New York Giants (0-4 SU, 0-4 ATS)
Spread: New York -1.5, Total: 53.5

MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

What a sad state of affairs right now for the Giants and the Eagles! These two teams both stink, and they are both giving up way, way too many points for their own good. However, not all hope is lost for sure. The winner of this game is going to take a huge step towards getting back into the thick of the fight. The Eagles are just a game back of the Cowboys, and the Giants are two back, and Dallas is taking on Denver this weekend. Translation: Even if the lowly 0-4 Giants win this game, they are only going to be a game back of the Cowboys for the NFC East lead. That’s what this division has come down to. Last year, the G-Men stopped a run of eight wins in nine games for the Eagles, who had also gone 7-1-1 ATS in those games.

Kansas City Chiefs (4-0 SU, 3-1 ATS) @ Tennessee Titans (3-1 SU, 3-0-1 ATS)
Spread: Kansas City -3, Total: 38.5

LP Field, Nashville, TN – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Titans were really rolling until QB Jake Locker got hurt last week. Now, he’s out for a month, and it is going to be up to QB Ryan Fitzpatrick to step into the starting role and try to take over. KC is a 4-0 team that is on top of the world right now, but the club still is getting next to no respect. The truth of the matter is that this team could go 14-2 and lose two games to the Broncos by one point apiece, finish second in the AFC West, and go on the road and be an underdog in the first round of the playoffs against a team like Houston or Cincinnati at this point. QB Alex Smith is never going to get the respect that he deserves. The Titans and Chiefs have played four straight games in this series past the ‘total’, and the winning team has scored at least 34 points in three of those four games. It’s doubtful that that happens on Sunday.

Jacksonville Jaguars (0-4 SU, 0-4 ATS) @ St. Louis Rams (1-3 SU, 0-4 ATS)
Spread: St. Louis -11.5, Total: 41.5

Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis, MO – Sunday, October 6th, 1:00 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Someone is going to get their first cover of the season in this one, and it is going to be a real war to see who gets the job done. The Rams absolutely cannot run the football to save their lives, but they are going to be taking on a defense that has the worst yards per carry allowed in the league. Something has to give, and we aren’t all that sure what it is that will be giving. At least the pitiful Jacksonville offense is going to get a spark by getting WR Justin Blackmon back in the fold, as he is going to jump right back in and hopefully be the top receiver on a team that badly needs all the help that it can get. These two teams have actually only met three times before in Jags history, and the Rams hold a 2-1 SU and 3-0 ATS edge.

Carolina Panthers (1-2 SU, 1-2 ATS) @ Arizona Cardinals (2-2 SU, 3-1 ATS)
Spread: Carolina -1.5, Total: 42.5

University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, AZ – Sunday, October 6th, 4:05 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

This is a game that really doesn’t make a whole heck of a lot of sense to us as we see it. The Cardinals are at home, and the Panthers have to fly across the country, yet the home team is the one that is getting points in spite of the fact that the Cards are probably closer to challenging for a spot in the playoffs than the Panthers are. Puzzling, to say the least. The good news for Carolina is that it is off of a bye, and teams generally fare quite well in that situation against teams that are playing on regular rest. These two have met most seasons in Carolina’s history, and not surprisingly, the results are rather split. The road team and the home team are both 4-4 SU and 4-4 ATS in this series in the last eight meetings.

Denver Broncos (4-0 SU, 3-0-1 ATS) @ Dallas Cowboys (2-2 SU, 3-1 ATS)
Spread: Denver -7.5, Total: 55.5

Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, TX – Sunday, October 6th, 4:25 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Well, this is the “game of the week” perhaps in name only. We will say that it is the first time that the Broncos are really going to be tested on the road this year by a reasonable team, though we aren’t really all that sure just how good the Cowboys really are. Denver’s offense looks absolutely unstoppable, and tossing 16 TDs without throwing a pick through four games is just insane. QB Peyton Manning should have no problems shredding a Dallas secondary that has been downright bad this year, especially when defending the deep ball. The Cowboys would love to win this game to become the only above .500 team in the NFC East, but alas, everyone seems destined to be below .500 when this week is said and done with in that foursome. The Broncos are 5-2 SU and 6-1 ATS in this series dating all the way back to 1986.

Houston Texans (2-2 SU, 0-4 ATS) @ San Francisco 49ers (2-2 SU, 2-2 ATS)
Spread: San Francisco -5.5, Total: 41.5

Candlestick Park, San Francisco, CA – Sunday, October 6th, 8:30 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The last time that 49ers and the Texans played a game at Candlestick Park, it was Week 17 in 2005. At that point, these two teams were fighting for the #1 pick in the NFL Draft. Houston “won” the game by losing, and it ended up with DE Mario Williams with the draft pick that really helped change the course of the franchise. Now, both of these teams are legit Super Bowl contenders, but they are both 2-2 teams that know a loss in this one could be devastating. QB Colin Kaepernick going against that Houston defense should be a lot of fun to watch, as San Francisco has either been really good or really bad offensively in two games this year. This is likely to be a game somewhere in the middle. QB Matt Schaub is having everyone in his own town making fun of him, from the guy that burned his jersey in the parking lot to the restaurant that is offering the Matt Schaub “Pick Six” special where you get to pick six toppings for your burger… and pay dearly for it.

San Diego Chargers (2-2 SU, 3-0-1 ATS) @ Oakland Raiders (1-3 SU, 2-1-1 ATS)
Spread: San Diego -4.5, Total: 44.5

O.co Coliseum, Oakland, CA – Sunday, October 6th, 11:35 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

Yes, you’re reading that right. This is an 11:35 PM kickoff on Sunday night, which is even an incredibly late game by West Coast standards. We can all thank baseball for this, as the A’s are playing the Tigers on Saturday night at 9:05, and there is no way that the field would be turned around in time to get the Raiders ready for it. Alas, the time change, as the game couldn’t compete with Sunday Night Football either. No worries to us, as that legitimately gives us a quadruple header of NFL games to watch, perhaps for the first time in NFL history. On the field, this is a big game. San Diego is good enough to be a 4-0 team right now, but it is suspect enough to be a 1-3 team as well. The Raiders at least have a pulse, and they have their starting quarterback QB Terrelle Pryor back as well. This could be an interesting one, especially with the dynamics of the late night game. Oakland has covered six of the last eight in this series, but it has only won three of the eight.

New York Jets (2-2 SU, 3-1 ATS) @ Atlanta Falcons (1-3 SU, 1-3 ATS)
Spread: Atlanta -9.5, Total: 44

Georgia Dome, Atlanta, GA – Monday, October 7th, 8:40 ET

Handicapping Match-up Details Pick & Preview

The Falcons absolutely cannot afford to screw the pooch in this game, or we would be ready to declare their season dead. Atlanta has a lot better team than this 1-3 record indicates, and we have to think that the club is going to take some steps in the right direction with this week’s game. QB Geno Smith is going to be playing without two of his top receivers in this game, and that is going to make things even harder for him against a defense that is going to want to be aggressive. New York only has won SU victory in a game in this series dating back to 1990, and that came in 1998. That was also the only cover in that timeframe for the Jets as well, as they are just 1-2-2 ATS in the last five in this series.

Adam Markowitz

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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