One week after the Denver Broncos were favored by more than 25 points against the Jacksonville Jaguars, the NFL slate for Week 7 features just one double-digit underdog. Instead, the schedule is highlighted by plenty of evenly matched games.
The only big favorite of the week is the Green Bay Packers, who barely crack the double-digit threshold as a 10-point favorite against the Cleveland Browns.
Otherwise, the oddsmakers set a lot of one-score lines, which should make for an exciting week of action.
With that in mind, let's examine some of the top picks against the spread for Week 7, followed by a complete list of selections.
New York Giants (-3.5 vs. Minnesota Vikings)
The Giants have far more talent than their 0-6 record would indicate. However, it's only Week 7 and they are already facing what amounts to a last stand.
If New York can't rebound to win a home game on Monday night against the Vikings, even the most optimist fans will lose hope of a major comeback.
In years past, the Giants always seemed to step up when their back was against the wall. That's certainly the case this week, as they prepare to face a beatable Minnesota squad.
Though ESPN.com's Ben Goessling is reporting that Josh Freeman is the new Vikings starter, the team isn't likely to receive much of a boost. He was completing less than 50 percent of his throws before being let go by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Eli Manning should finally right the ship against the 29th-ranked Vikings pass defense. As long as he's able to limit his mistakes and the defense doesn't let Adrian Peterson run wild, the Giants should finally get in the win column.
Prediction: Giants by eight.
San Francisco 49ers (-4 at Tennessee Titans)
After a pair of blowout losses in Weeks 2 and 3, it seemed like San Francisco's season was starting to fall apart. Credit to Jim Harbaugh for getting his team to regroup, which consisted mostly of going back to what made it successful last season.
The 49ers have reverted back to a game plan that leans heavily on defense and a solid rushing attack. The result has been three straight victories by an average score of 34-11 and far less pressure on Colin Kaepernick to lead the offense.
Tennessee's season has been trending in the other direction. After a 3-1 start, the Titans have lost two straight games to top opponents (Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs).
They didn't have enough offensive firepower to keep pace and that will likely be the case again in Week 7.
Prediction: 49ers by 10.
Baltimore Ravens (+1.5 at Pittsburgh Steelers)
The only reason the Ravens look more like fringe playoff contenders than the defending champions is an extremely ineffective running game. Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce are both averaging fewer than three yards per carry through six weeks.
They have a great chance to get things back on track against the Steelers, though. Pittsburgh ranks 22nd against the run, allowing nearly 115 yards per game.
Baltimore should focus on establishing the ground game early, which will help take the crowd out of the game.
Even though neither team is playing up to its usual standards, it should still be a close, hard-fought game like in years past. Assuming the Ravens can make some progress on the ground, they should pull out the outright victory.
Prediction: Ravens by three.
Complete Spread Picks for Week 7
|NFL Week 7 Spread Picks|
|Date||Road Team||Home Team||Spread||Pick|
|Oct. 17||Seahawks||Cardinals||SEA -5.5||SEA|
|Oct. 20||Buccaneers||Falcons||ATL -7||ATL|
|Oct. 20||Cowboys||Eagles||PHI -3||Push|
|Oct. 20||Patriots||Jets||NE -3.5||NE|
|Oct. 20||Bills||Dolphins||MIA -8||BUF|
|Oct. 20||Chargers||Jaguars||SD -7.5||SD|
|Oct. 20||Rams||Panthers||CAR -6||CAR|
|Oct. 20||Bengals||Lions||DET -3||DET|
|Oct. 20||49ers||Titans||SF -4||SF|
|Oct. 20||Texans||Chiefs||KC -6||KC|
|Oct. 20||Ravens||Steelers||PIT -1.5||BAL|
|Oct. 20||Browns||Packers||GB -10||CLE|
|Oct. 20||Broncos||Colts||DEN -6.5||IND|
|Oct. 21||Vikings||Giants||NYG -3.5||NYG|
|Odds: Vegas Insider|
All lines used are courtesy of Vegas Insider.
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