Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 9:30 AM EST odds are subject to change.
Carolina @ Atlanta -4
1:00 PM EST. The Falcons incredible undefeated run against the spread came to an end last Sunday in Cincinnati, where they dropped that game, 35-17. There is no sugarcoating an 18-point loss, but we can use that result to our advantage this week.
The picksellers and pundits all caught on to the Falcons cashing like a broken slot machine before last week and flocked to them. Those that finally got on board with Atlanta however were “too late to the party”, a concept we have discussed numerous times. Those late to the party that jumped on Atlanta last week are going to be reluctant here to get back on board, thus creating another cardinal sin of wagering, referred to here as “zig-zagging”. In this case, that would be fading the Falcons at home here in Week 8. We cannot stress enough just how wrong that move is.
No team made more of an impact in the market in Week 7 than the Carolina Panthers. Fresh from trading franchise player Christian McCaffery and wide receiver Robbie Anderson, the Cats came out and punched Tom Brady and the Buccaneers right in the mouth. That 21-3 final was no fluke by the way and one could argue that it actually flattered the Bucs, who took three points in the fourth quarter just so they wouldn’t get goose egged. There were no turnovers, there was no tomfoolery. The Panthers played great defense, as they didn’t allow the Bradys to visit the Red Zone until the fourth quarter. On offense, Carolina ran the ball, while quarterback P.J. Walker put star wideout D.J. Moore in a position to make the big plays. It was a swift ass kicking and a well earned win.
The Panthers closed as a 13-point pooch with a depleted roster last Sunday and they had the market ripping up every parlay and teaser they were faded in. The time to get behind the Panthers was last week when their stock was about to bottom out. It was hard to do because of how putrid they have looked all year and because the media was selling the Bucs being in a very foul mood and ready to kick some ass. The bold Jimmy Johnson, who claimed himself that, “I’m in last place” (referring to picking one winner a week along with the rest of the panel on the NFL Today pregame show), went out on a limb and picked Tampa.
The Panthers had a great performance in Week 7 and that one great performance is reflected in this price. We don’t have to look any further than this number to see that. Last week, at home to Tampa, the Panthers were a double digit dog, closing at +13. Now, just one week and one win later, Carolina is taking back a mere four points (at the time of this writing) on the road in Atlanta. We’re just going to repeat that again. At home last week against Tampa, Carolina was taking back 13 points. On the road this week in Atlanta, a team that is superior to the Bucs, Carolina is taking back 9 points less. That’s preposterous and it makes the Dirty Birds the absolute best value play on the board. Recommendation: Atlanta -4
Atlanta -4 +100 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.00)