Darren’s Dimes for NFL Week 5: Playing the Over, and Backing the Boys
It was another 3-0 week for my Darren’s Dimes column in Week 4 of the NFL season after the Buffalo Bills, New Orleans Saints and Chicago Bears all covered their respective spreads. That brings the total 2019 NFL win/loss count to 7-2. Hopefully, I am able to keep the strong picks coming to you, with three more suggestions going into Week 5.
Will The Legend Of Gardner Minshew Top The Carolina’s Chemistry With Kyle Allen?
The most interesting game of the week may be between two 2-2 teams in the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Carolina Panthers. Each team has been rolling as of late with backup quarterbacks leading their squads to victory. The Jaguars’ win of 20-7 over the Tennessee Titans was as impressive as the Panthers’ defeat of the Houston Texans last week. However, the Texans win was on the road while the Jaguars held the Titans to only seven points at home.
I don’t particularly like any team in this game. What I do like is the Over/Under set at 41 points. This is a game where the true colors of the backup quarterbacks may come out, especially with a couple of strong defenses on the field. Take the under and don’t worry about which team comes out on top.
Now That The Cowboys Took An L, I’m Ready To Jump Back On Board The Bandwagon.
Last week, I said stay away from the Dallas Cowboys. While the team looked good on paper with a 3-0 record going into New Orleans, that record was compiled against teams such as the Washington Redskins and Miami Dolphins, which could be the 2 worst franchises in professional football. The Cowboys were brought to reality with a 12-10 loss to the Saints and should be well prepared to take on a Green Bay Packers team that does not appear to have many flaws.
Yet, the Packers, which had a very stingy defense going into last week’s game against the Philadelphia Eagles, gave up a whopping 34 points at home. That should be a concern as the team heads to Dallas to go against a Cowboys squad that put up 35, 31 and 31 points respectively during the first three weeks of the season. I don’t love that the spread is 3.5 points, but I do think the Cowboys are still able to cover, even if it is only by half a point.
Maybe The Browns Are Who We Thought They Were.
Finally, let’s talk about the San Francisco 49ers (coming off an early Bye Week) against the bipolar Cleveland Browns. The Browns may be the toughest team to predict on a week-by-week basis, and that’s particularly true this coming week with Antonio Callaway making his return from a 4-game suspension and the general public having no clue whether he will play and, if he does, how much time he will receive on the field. Additionally, no one knows which Baker Mayfield will show up in any given week.
Meanwhile, the 49ers have exceeded expectations early in the season, but will the Bye Week serve to slow the franchise down at all? It’s a Monday night game in San Francisco, and the 49ers are only giving up 3.5 points despite being at home and being undefeated. I think the Browns will show up after good tests against the Rams and Ravens, and likely give the 49ers the club’s 1st loss of the season. Take the Browns and the 3.5 points and cross your fingers that you get a confident, but not cocky, Mayfield behind center.
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Darren Heitner is the Founder of HEITNER LEGAL, P.L.L.C., where he serves as legal counsel to some of the most successful athletes, sports agents and other individuals and companies. He is the founder of Sports Agent Blog, a niche publication that covers the entirety of the sports agency industry. Darren contributed to Forbes for 6 years and Inc. Magazine for 4 years, covering the business of sports. He wrote published 2 sports law treatises published by the American Bar Association.