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NFL Picks: Week 5 DraftKings Sportsbook Pool Predictions

Matt LaMarca breaks down his picks in the DraftKings Sportsbook Pool for Week 5 of the NFL season.

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There is a free $5K Sportsbook Pool for NFL Week 5. You have to pick each of the games on Sunday against the spread, and the higher you finish on the leaderboard, the more money you earn.

Let’s take a look at all the contests slated for Sunday, including my five personal favorites.

Green Bay Packers (-3.5) at Cincinnati Bengals

The Pick: Bengals +3.5

The Bengals are shaping up to be one of the favorite targets for the sharps this week. They’ve received just 28% of the spread bets in this contest, but those bets have accounted for 62% of the dollars. That has caused this spread to drop to just three points on DraftKings Sportsbook, but we can still grab them at 3.5 in this pool.

The Bengals started the season with an overtime loss vs. the Vikings, but they’ve reeled off three straight wins since then. Joe Burrow has been fantastic in his second pro season, racking up nine touchdowns with just four interceptions while averaging 9.2 adjusted yards per attempt. He owns the seventh-highest grade at the quarterback position per ProFootballFocus, and the Packers could be down star cornerback Jaire Alexander this week. That makes the Bengals an appealing target.

New England Patriots (-7.5) @ Houston Texans

The Pick: Patriots -7.5

We’re getting a bit of spread value with the Patriots in this contest. They’re currently listed as 8.5-point favorites on DraftKings Sportsbook, so we’re grabbing the key number of eight in this pool.

The trends actually point to the Texans being a solid buy-low target following a 40-0 defeat last week, but I can’t advise backing Davis Mills. There are different levels of bad quarterbacks, but Mills might be the worst quarterback to see an NFL field in recent memory. Remember that game last season where the Broncos had to start a practice squad wide receiver at quarterback because of COVID-19? That guy might be better than Mills.

The Texans managed a nearly unfathomable four yards in the first half last week before “exploding” for 105 after halftime. Mills finished with just 87 passing yards and four interceptions, resulting in a mind-boggling average of -4.43 adjusted yards per attempt.

Bill Belichick is notorious for making life difficult on young quarterbacks, so I’m not expecting much progression this week. The Pats might only need to score 14-17 points to cover this number.

Philadelphia Eagles @ Carolina Panthers (-3.5)

The Pick: Eagles +3.5

This is another sharp target this week. The Eagles were down four offensive linemen last week vs. the Chiefs, but they still managed to put forth a decent offensive effort. Their defense let them down, allowing 42 points to Patrick Mahomes and company, but that shouldn’t be as big of an issue vs. the Panthers.

The Panthers stand out as a big overvalue by the public. They did jump out to a 3-0 record, but their wins have come against the Jets, Saints, and Texans. That’s not a very impressive resume. They came back to reality last week vs. the Cowboys, particularly on the defensive side of the ball.

New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys (-8.5)

The Pick: Giants +8.5

The Giants are coming off an impressive win last week vs. the Saints. They were missing two of their top three wide receivers, yet they still managed to secure the upset as seven-point road underdogs.

However, the Cowboys have arguably seen their stock rise more than any other team through the first four weeks. They started with a last-second loss to Tom Brady and the Buccaneers, but they’ve reeled off three straight wins since then.

We knew their offense would be explosive, but they have beaten teams in a variety of ways this season. They’ve gotten their run game going over the past two weeks, with Ezekiel Elliott averaging 6.43 yards per carry and Tony Pollard averaging 6.05. Adding that kind of rushing production to what Dak Prescott can do with his arm gives the Cowboys one of the scariest offenses in the league.

Still, don’t sleep on the Giants’ offense. This was a make-or-break year for Daniel Jones, and he has been excellent through the first four weeks. He’s been a threat with his arms and his legs, and Pro Football Focus has rewarded him with the fifth-highest grade at the quarterback position.

The Giants also unleashed first-round pick Kadarius Toney last week, which gives their offense the big-play threat they’ve been lacking. He looked electric at times vs. the Saints, racking up 78 yards on six catches. Even when Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton return to the lineup, Toney should have a solidified spot in the receiver rotation.

With that in mind, I think this spread might be a smidge high. Backing the underdog in NFC East showdowns has also historically been a wise decision, rewarding bettors with a 115-98-5 record since 2004. We can also grab them at +8.5 in this pool despite the line dropping to just seven points on DraftKings Sportsbook.

Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs (-3.5)

The Pick: Bills +3.5

Sunday wraps up with a potential AFC Championship game preview between the Bills and Chiefs. The Chiefs were able to get the best of the Bills in last season’s AFC Championship game, but things could be different this season.

The Chiefs’ defense hasn’t just been bad to start the year, it’s been downright awful. They rank dead last in Football Outsiders defensive DVOA, and they rank in the bottom-two against the run and the pass. They’ve allowed at least 29 points in all four games, and the Bills’ offense will be arguably their toughest test yet.

Meanwhile, the Bills’ defense has already pitched two shutouts this season. I’m not expecting them to completely neutralize Mahomes and his talented group of pass-catchers, but they can win this game if they can generate just a couple of stops. I’ll gladly back them getting more than a field goal.

Remaining Games

Here’s who I’m targeting for the rest of the Sunday games. Remember, we’re looking to beat the competition and climb up the leaderboard, so I’ll be looking to gain leverage on the field and fade the public in situations where I don’t see a huge edge on the spread.

Miami Dolphins @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-9.5)

Pick: Buccaneers -9.5

Tennessee Titans (-7.5) @ Jacksonville Jaguars

Pick: Jaguars +7.5

Denver Broncos (-2.5) @ Pittsburgh Steelers

Pick: Broncos -2.5

New Orleans Saints (-1.5) @ Washington Football Team

Pick: Washington Football Team +1.5

Detroit Lions @ Minnesota Vikings (-8.5)

Pick: Vikings -8.5

Chicago Bears @ Las Vegas Raiders (-6.5)

Pick: Bears +6.5

Cleveland Browns @ Los Angeles Chargers (-0.5)

Pick: Browns +0.5

San Francisco 49ers @ Arizona Cardinals (-2.5)

Pick: Cardinals -2.5

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