Philadelphia Eagles v Jacksonville Jaguars: Total Points Under 43 – 20/21
The Jags return to Wembley, their home-from-home, with their season on the brink. Blake Bortles was benched last week against the Texans after more turnovers, but the QB will keep the starting gig for at least one more game.
That’s despite what seems to be a mutiny from the defence, who’ve gone from the league’s best units last season to a very mediocre one this. They look tired of digging out an offence that can’t score enough to win.
Philly are coming to London on a loss too, though quite how still isn’t clear. They forced Carolina to punt on every possession through the first three quarters last week but somehow still lost with a 17-0 lead at the start of the fourth. They’re playing better than their record though, and with Carson Wentz back and improving every week, they should able to put enough wins together in a poor NFC East.
The only factor that’d impede anyone from going with the Eagles -3 is Jacksonville’s familiarlity with the London trip. If the Jags have a chance here, it won’t be because of their scoring with either Bortles or Cody Kessler at QB and Leonard Fournette still out. Under on the total points is the pick because Jacksonville can’t score.
Baltimore Ravens @ Carolina Panthers: Panthers +2.5 – Evens
Carolina are coming off that huge turnaround versus Philadelphia. They’re unbeaten at home and are catching the Ravens between two massive games; New Orleans last time out and division rivals Pittsburgh next week. The fact they’re getting points in a game that could easily be a pick ’em just sweetens this deal.
The Ravens have a tough defence, and their offence is improved on last year – they couldn’t have got much worse to be honest. Their running game is still very limited though, and if either John Brown or Michael Crabtree miss this game it’ll really hinder Joe Flacco’s apparent resurgence.
One worry for the Panthers is Cam Newton’s not been 100% in practice due to an injury to his throwing shoulder, but he’s played through plenty of knocks before, so we’d take him +2.5 in his own stadium at even money.
New Orleans Saints @ Minnesota Vikings: Vikings -1 – 20/21
The further we get from the Viking 16.5 point favourite collapse at home against the Bills, the more it looks a freak result due to Minnesota taking their eye off their Sunday opponent because of their game against the Rams four days later.
As if we needed any more reasons to hate Thursday night football.
The Vikes comfortably handled the Jets last week, improving to 4-2-1. With Kirk Cousins at QB they’ve changed their style of play from last seson to more pass heavy. How that works out in the long run is to be determined, but it’s doing the business for now and their defence is playing better too. Everson Griffen’s return could be huge for them.
The Saints got a big break last week with Justin Tucker’s extra point miss. That was a major road win for them, but now they’re at an NFC powerhouse a week later and it’s hard to love them in the spot. Maybe they’ll have revenge on their minds after last season’s playoff loss, but the Vikings -1 is the bet here.
*All odds correct at time of posting