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Game to bet now
Arizona Cardinals at Buffalo Bills (+4)
Is Rex Ryan already playing out the string in western New York? Ryan might be on thin ice even before the ice arrives in Buffalo. The Bills are 0-2 and already two games back in the AFC East, and now face the Cardinals and Patriots in back-to-back games. If Buffalo isn’t at least competitive, the pressure will certainly be on ownership to make a mid-season change. The Cardinals head east with tons of momentum after crushing Tampa Bay by 33 in Week 2, and now begin the soft underbelly of their schedule (Bills, Rams, 49ers and Jets). The game opened at Buffalo +4, and if you’re with the vast majority of early bettors who like the Cardinals, best get your wager down before the number goes to 4½ or 5.
Game to wait on
Houston Texans at New England Patriots (+2.5)
Lots to look here as the Texans play their first road game of the year. New England will have had only a few days to get third-string rookie QB Jacoby Brissett up to speed in the wake of Jimmy Garoppolo’s shoulder injury. And what happens if Brissett goes down? Also, will Rob Gronkowski play? What about LB Dont’a Hightower, whose absence was clearly felt last Sunday in the second half against Miami? If the Patriots plan on a light workload for Brissett and hope to run the ball with workhorse LeGarrette Blount (29 carries/123 yards vs. the Dolphins), be advised the Texans are more than pretty good against the run. If you like NE in this one, at 2.5 it might be a good idea to hold on until just before kickoff to see if Texans money pushes the number to 3.
Total to watch
San Diego Chargers at Indianapolis Colts (51.5)
The 1-1 Chargers and the 0-2 Colts are both high-scoring teams with suspect defenses. In fact, the four games involving these teams have produced a total of 230 points. The sample is obviously small, but Indy is on a pace to give up 584 points – which would be 108 more than the worst defensive team in the league (New Orleans) allowed last season. Adding fuel to the fire is that San Diego has scored the second-most points in the league this season, just one fewer than Carolina. The total here opened at 50.5 and was quickly bet up to 51.5.
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