NFL Week 11 odds, picks: It’s time for the Eagles to act like defending champs, plus more best bets
There are six teams on a bye this week, and there isn’t a line posted for the Baltimore-Cincinnati game due to the uncertainty around the Ravens quarterback situation. That leaves us with four fewer games to pick from this week.
Thankfully I’ve found plenty of value in the games we do have to pick from. So let’s not waste any more time and try to continue the momentum we picked up with our 2-1 (3-1 if you followed the SportsLine bonus pick) from last week.
Philadelphia Eagles (+9) at New Orleans Saints
This line is straight up disrespectful of the defending champions. Which, honestly, isn’t all that unexpected considering the defending champions are only 4-5 this season and just lost to the Cowboys in a primetime spotlight game. Then there are the Saints, who are 8-1 on the season, and since dropping their season-opener against Tampa Bay have won eight straight.
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But I believe those things are leading to the Saints being a bit overvalued in this spot. The Eagles may have a losing record, but the only NFC teams with a better point-differential than them this season are the Saints, Rams, Seahawks, Vikings and Bears. So they’ve played better than their record reflects. This is still a defense that’s good enough to slow the Saints down a little, and there’s plenty of talent remaining on the offense. The Eagles won’t get blown out here. Saints 31, Eagles 24
Jacksonville Jaguars (+6) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
The Jaguars are similar to the Eagles in this spot. They didn’t win the Super Bowl, but they nearly won the AFC last year and came into the 2018 season as a popular pick to reach the Super Bowl this season. Instead, they’ve gone 3-6, and a fearsome defense hasn’t been the strong unit we expected, though it’s still one of the better defenses in the league. But the Jaguars will once again have Leonard Fournette this week, and his return was a spark last week. In fact, his presence is just a boost to the Jaguars overall because he takes a lot of the load off of Blake Bortles, which is good for everyone involved with the Jaguars.
Also, while I don’t want to put too much stock in last year, the Jaguars did beat the Steelers in Pittsburgh twice last season. There was the 30-9 butt-kicking in the regular season and the 45-42 win in the Divisional Round of the playoffs. So the Jaguars know how to beat this Steelers team, and now you want to give me nearly a touchdown with them at home? Passing up that value is hard. Steelers 27, Jaguars 24
Washington Redskins (+3) vs. Houston Texans
Houston has won six straight after losing their first three games of the season. They’ve also been one of the luckiest teams in the NFL this season. Now they’re coming off a bye and favored on the road against the Redskins. I’m not sure they should be.
It’s not that I believe the Redskins to be a juggernaut. In fact, the Redskins strike me as a team that’s similar to the Texans. If anything they’re the ones that should be favored in this game, so if you’re getting three points, it’s hard to turn them down. Redskins 23, Texans 20
SportsLine Bonus Pick
Tennessee Titans at Indianapolis Colts: It’s a divisional showdown between the Colts and Titans in Indianapolis this Sunday. The Colts are favored by two points with the total set at 49. I have a strong play available for this game that you can read about over at my SportsLine page.
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