By Sean Murphy, lead handicapper with The Miller Group of Covers Experts
Home cooking didn’t pay off this week as the road teams dominated, winning nine of 13 games on Sunday. From a betting standpoint, underdogs took home the loot, going 8-4-1 ATS.
The Seahawks and 49ers will close out Week 10 on Monday night, but before that, let’s recap Sunday’s action:
Falcons at Panthers (-3 ½, 35 ½)
Final: Falcons 20, Panthers 13
The Falcons have quietly become one of the league’s biggest cash cows, compiling a 6-3 ATS mark. Carolina looked lifeless as it suffered its third consecutive loss. If there’s one thing the Panthers have done well, it’s cash under tickets. Each of their last six games have stayed under the number.
Bills at Dolphins (+3, 41)
Final: Bills 13, Dolphins 10
This one quickly turned into a defensive battle. In the end the Bills once again broke the Dolphins hearts, sending them to their ninth straight loss. Buffalo’s seemingly rejuvenated offense could do little, but the Bills defense more than picked up the slack. Under backers enjoyed an easy payday as this one stayed 18 points below the total.
Browns at Steelers (-10, 46 ½)
Final: Steelers 31, Browns 28
The Steelers needed a big second-half rally to get past the Browns on Sunday. Cleveland did take home the cash as a 10-point underdog, improving to 7-2 ATS on the season. The Steelers haven’t been too shabby against the number themselves, cashing at a 6-3 ATS clip. The win gives Pittsburgh complete control in the AFC North.
Broncos at Chiefs (-3, 37 ½)
Final: Broncos 27, Chiefs 11
If you’re looking for the league’s biggest mystery, look no further than the Denver Broncos. A week after getting trounced 44-7 in Detroit, Denver rallied to hand Kansas City their second straight loss at Arrowhead. It looks like the Chiefs could be in for a rough ride the rest of the way with Larry Johnson sidelined.
Jaguars at Titans (-4 ½, 36 ½)
Final: Jaguars 28, Titans 13
Vince Young turned in his best passing day of the season, but it wasn’t nearly enough as the Jaguars walked into Tennessee and trounced the Titans. The Jags got three touchdowns on the ground and Quinn Gray took care of the football. That has become the Jags’ recipe for success without David Garrard. Jacksonville is now 5-2 ATS over its last seven contests.
Vikings at Packers (-5, 41)
Final: Packers 34, Vikings 0
The Vikings lost more than just the game on Sunday; they might have also lost running back Adrian Peterson. The rookie record-breaker went down with a knee injury in the third quarter. He was slated to have an MRI to determine the extent of the injury. The beat goes on for the Packers as they improved to 8-1 on the strength of three Brett Favre touchdown passes.
Eagles at Redskins (-3, 37 ½)
Final: Eagles 33, Redskins 25
This turned out to be the most entertaining game of the week. The Eagles and Redskins traded scores throughout the fourth quarter before Brian Westbrook sealed the deal with two scores in the final three minutes. It was a huge win for the Eagles. A loss likely would have dashed any playoff hopes in the ultra-competitive NFC. This game flew over the total thanks to a 30-point fourth quarter.
Rams at Saints (-10, 47)
Final: Rams 37, Saints 29
And then there was one. The Rams removed themselves from the ranks of the winless, dominating New Orleans for four quarters on Sunday. It marked the Rams’ first pointspread victory since back on Oct. 7 against Arizona. For the Saints, the loss put an end to a four-game winning streak and dropped them into a tie for second in the NFC South.
Bengals at Ravens (-3, 44 ½)
Final: Bengals 21, Ravens 7
The Ravens offense struggled to get anything going for the second straight week and the Bengals took full advantage. It’s not as if Cincinnati was able to do much on offense either. The Bengals won on the strength of seven Shayne Graham field goals. The Ravens fall to a woeful 1-8 ATS on the season.
Bears at Raiders (+3 ½, 38 ½)
Final: Bears 17, Raiders 6
The Bears appeared to be headed for their sixth loss of the season, trailing 6-3 with just four minutes remaining. That was when Rex Grossman, yes Rex Grossman, took over. The much-maligned QB led the Bears on two touchdown drives in the final three minutes, completing an improbable comeback. The Raiders will carry a five-game losing streak into Minnesota next Sunday.
Cowboys at Giants (+2, 47 ½)
Final: Cowboys 31, Giants 20
The NFC East appears to be no-contest as the Cowboys knocked off another divisional foe on Sunday in New York. At 8-1, Dallas now sits two full games up on the Giants for first place. Dallas also owns the tiebreaker having swept the season series. Tony Romo and Terrell Owens continued to make it look easy. Their last touchdown hook-up broke the hearts and bankrolls of under backers everywhere.
Lions at Cardinals (-2 ½, 45 ½)
Final: Cardinals 31, Lions 21
It’s official: the Lions own the strongest home-road dichotomy in the league as they once again got tripped up outside of Detroit. A week after dominating the Broncos, Detroit’s defense could do little to slow down the Cardinals, namely Larry Fitzgerald. He hauled in a pair of touchdown passes in leading the Cards to their fourth win, putting them right back into the NFC West hunt.
Colts at Chargers (+3 ½, 47)
Final: Chargers 23, Colts 21
The Chargers jumped out to a 23-0 lead and then held on for dear life for a narrow two-point victory over the Colts. Indianapolis looked dazed in the opening 20 minutes as Peyton Manning threw four interceptions, and the Colts special teams gave up a pair of touchdowns. The loss put an end to the Colts’ five-game ATS winning streak. A 14-point second half helped this one stay just under the posted total.