Category Archives: NFL

Best NFL Bets for Week 3

It’s that time of the week, once again, for some more NFL bets! Last week, we started off strong, hitting that Colts moneyline, and then the Packers were looking good, too, heading into the fourth quarter. Then, Green Bay blew their lead, leaving us hoping for the Saints to give us a winning record. Of course, they pushed. After going 1-1-1, we are now at 3-2-1 on the season for the NFL portion of our Best Bets series.

Hopefully, we can keep right the ship this week. All lines come via Draft Kings as of Friday afternoon. Also, be sure to catch me and my fellow ATB bettors’ locks and underdogs of the week on Around The Book. Let’s get started and dive into the best NFL bets for Week 3!

Photo Credit: USA Today

Bills at Commanders: Commanders +6.5 (-110)

Yes, Buffalo looked like a juggernaut last week, but that may have been more about Las Vegas’ struggles than anything else. The Bills are a good team, but they do have flaws. As we saw in Week 1, they have trouble stopping the run. Washington should be able to exploit that far more than the Raiders did.

As far as the Commanders go, they have not looked bad this year. They have played the dregs of the league, but 2-0 is 2-0. Sam Howell has not looked bad. The offense moves the ball well and the defense is at least respectable. Expect Washington to keep it close, take the points.

Patriots at Jets: Patriots -2.5 (-120)

It turns out that Zach Wilson and Jets are not as good as we thought they were after the season opener. They cannot protect their young quarterback, and he cannot get the ball out quick enough.

That is too much of a weakness for Bill Belichick to exploit. The Patriots have looked okay this year, despite the 0-2 start. This game seems like the perfect opportunity for their first win of the year. New England only having to win by a field goal makes this one too good to pass up, despite sub-par value.

Bears at Chiefs: Under 48 (-112)

This game is almost certainly going to be a blow out. The Chiefs are slowly finding their stride, while the Bears are a complete dumpster fire. Typically that would be a great over play, but there’s plenty of reason to take the under.

The Bears have been completely inept on offense. It is unlikely things improve against a talented, and aggressive, Kansas City defense. They will struggle to score more than 10 points this week. On the other side of the ball, don’t expect the Chiefs to run it up. They don’t have the receivers to blow teams’ doors off. Also, they are beginning to control the ball more with the run. They might break 30, but getting over 35 would be a stretch. The under should hit pretty comfortably.

Week 3 NFL Best Bets Recap

  • Commanders +6.5 (-110)
  • Patriots -2.5 (-120)
  • Bears @ Chiefs: Under 48 (-112)
  • Parlay odds: +562

Patriots vs. Jets Preview

The Patriots and Jets face off this week in a unique matchup of division rivals. Both teams will view this game as a must-win, but also as a get-right game. The Pats are 0-2 after facing two of the powerhouse teams in the league. The Jets are 1-1 after stealing an emotional victory against the Bills after losing Aaron Rodgers, but got exposed last week against the Cowboys.

The Patriots have won 14 (!!!) in a row in this series and hope that trend continues, while the Jets want to get that monkey off their back.

Photo Credit: Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Series Record

Patriots 73, Jets 54, 1 tie

Patriots Offense vs. Jets Defense

Last year, the Pats and Jets treated America to a 10-3 game that was won on a Marcus Jones last-second punt return touchdown. This year may feature similar frustrations for both offenses. The Patriots are still looking to play a clean game of football on the offensive side; they have turned the ball over with generosity in the first quarter. The Jets’ defense is a sturdy group that will look to get constant pressure on Mac Jones and force him into mistakes.

The Patriots haven’t been able to get their run game going in the first two weeks. It’ll be tough sledding against a talented front seven for the New York Jets again this week. The return of Trent Brown and a healthy Mike Onwenu will give the Patriots their first look at their complete starting offensive line. The Patriots need to get some movement from the big guys up front to help open things up for the entire offense.

The Patriots need the running game to be established so they build the play-action game off of it. They don’t have many big-play threats, so the chunk plays will need to be manufactured by good play design and play calling.  

Mac can have similar success as the first couple of weeks, but needs to avoid the turnovers. The Pats are close to the top in the league for drives that cross into opponents’ territory, but are middle of the pack in scoring. Finishing drives, even if with field goals, will go a long way this week in what should be a low-scoring game. If anything, protecting the ball is the most important key to victory this week.

Patriots Defense vs. Jets Offense

The Patriots defense has played outstanding football against two top offenses thus far this year. Against the Jets on Sunday, they may be able to completely flex their collective talent. The Jets posed a severe threat at the beginning of the year when Aaron Rodgers was slotted to start this game. However, good friend Zach Wilson will get the start.

Wilson started his career against the Patriots with a four-interception performance, and has not shown much growth in solving Belichick since. Wilson has followed in Sam Darnold’s footsteps of being absolutely befuddled by the complex schemes of the Patriots. That should continue on Sunday, as Wilson likely throws a handful of picks to the Pats.

The Patriots did not face Breece Hall last year. He has an opportunity to make big plays out of nothing, but it would help if New York gave him the ball more than four times a game. The Patriots showed a disappointing effort in the run defense on Sunday night. While they invited the Dolphins to run, the Pats defended them poorly.

Belichick and the Patriots will be looking for a statement game here, and not having to worry about an explosive passing attack will allow them to play downhill with aggression in the run game.

Special Teams

New England showed they can still be light years ahead of everyone else in the third phase of the game. The Pats should have an edge here and be able to expose it for a couple of big plays. Return man Marcus Jones just went on injured reserve due to a labrum injury, so the return game may not be as explosive. The duo of rookie specialists has been solid thus far, and that should continue on Sunday.


The Patriots are looking for their first victory of the year. While they may not be desperate quite yet, they will be playing extremely hungry. This is a game that will be close early as both defenses shine and force a bit of a punting battle. The tide will start to turn as Wilson turns the ball over, allowing short fields for the Patriots offense.

This game should start to be a blowout by the late third quarter and the Pats won’t let it get close in garbage time. Patriots win 38-6.

How did the Patriots get to 0-2?

It’s been a less-than-stellar start to the season for the Patriots. While the schedule has done them no favors, they themselves have been unable to refrain from shooting themselves in the foot, either. They have been in both games to this point, but have been unable to finish. Here’s a few reasons why the Patriots have fallen to 0-2.

Photo Credit: Erick W. Rasco/Sports Illustrated via Getty Images


The most obvious reason for the Patriots’ 0-2 start would be their -2 turnover ratio. The Patriots have turned the ball over twice in both of their first two games. Those four turnovers were either immediately responsible for points for the other team or for taking points off the board for the Patriots.

Against the Eagles, the Patriots’ turnovers immediately resulted in 9 points for the opposition. Against the Dolphins, the Patriots’ turnovers both occurred in fringe red zone situations, taking away at least two field goal opportunities if not more. When you have lost two games by a total of 12 points, the 15 points you lost due to turnovers is all the difference in the world.

Three of the Patriots’ turnovers have occurred in the first quarter, contributing to slow starts. This team isn’t built to play from behind but has done no favors to themselves with the timing of their turnovers.

Offensive line play

The Pats had concerns all offseason about the offensive line. However, they decided to fill out the position with back-end roster types and mid-round rookies. Injuries to the group have made a questionable position even more of a liability. The lack of continuity throughout training camp has continued through the season’s first two weeks.

Only two offensive linemen have played in both games to this point. One, center David Andrews, has been his normal steady self. The other; right tackle Calvin Anderson, has fans hoping the team will sign La’el Collins.

The Pats wanted to focus on playing a smart and efficient offense that relies on play-action to get their chunk plays. When the offensive line is generating next-to-no push up front and not giving the quarterback time to look downfield, those chunk plays are going to be hard to come by.

The new contact rules for the offseason have made for less-than-stellar offensive line play in the first few weeks of the season. Let’s hope that some good health and continuity up front leads to improved overall offensive efficiency.

Lack of complementary football

There was a time where you could outplay the Patriots in every aspect of the game, but they would make the plays down the stretch when it counted. So far, one phase of the game has held up their end of the bargain, only to be let down by the other.

The defense has gotten key late takeaways in both games, only to watch the offense fail to find the endzone. Against the Eagles, a late fumble would’ve meant almost certain victory for yesterday’s Patriots teams. The blocked field goal against the Dolphins would’ve surely been points for the Patriots a few years ago.

The team will continue to find it’s identity, but vastly improving their complementary football will send this team from “contender?” to scary. The question is, can the Patriots get there after an 0-2 start?

Is Mac a closer?

Mac Jones has one game-winning drive on his resume in his three years as the Patriots starter. It came in 2021 against the Houston Texans, in a game that shouldn’t have been close to begin with. So far this year, Jones has had an opportunity to make a statement with fourth-quarter drives to take the lead or tie a game late. Football is a game of inches and the throw to Kayshon Boutte and the lateral to Cole Strange both were a hair within being first downs to sustain those drives.

However, the proof seems to be in the pudding with Jones. He hasn’t been able to finish a game late. It would be nice to see the offense not even get to a point where they are facing fourth downs on a gotta-have-it drive.

The team is trying to get an assessment on Jones this year for his future with the team. Starting to be a closer would go a long way toward making them feel much more confident in him going forward.

The Minnesota Vikings Trade For Rams RB Cam Akers

In a very busy Wednesday afternoon in the NFL, the day was capped off with a trade that sent a running back who fell out of favor with his current team, to a team that has struggled desperately running the football. Cam Akers has been the center of trade talks from the Rams for the last year, and Wednesday evening the Rams finally moved on from the former second-round pick sending him to the Minnesota Vikings, as well as a 2026 7th round pick, for a 2026 6th round pick.

Photo Credit: Ben VanHouten / Associated Press

What The Cam Akers Trade Means For Los Angeles

It has seemed like Akers has fallen out of favor with LA for the better part of the last year. From being inactive several weeks last season around the trade deadline, the rumored character issues, and arguments with Rams management, all those fators combined with the emergence of second year back Kyren Williams was the end of the line for his Akers’ Rams tenure.

This deal does not change much for the Rams a whole. They get a late-round pick for a player they no longer felt fit their team, and they get to move forward with Kyren Williams are their primary starter for the foreseeable future. The real intrigue comes from the other team involved in the Cam Akers trade: The Minnesota Vikings.

What This Deal Means For Minnesota

After moving on from Dalvin Cook in the off-season, Vikings general manager Kwesi Adofo-Mensah put the faith of his running backs room in the hands of fifth year back Alexander Mattison. After four seasons of being the complementary piece to Cook in the offense, and showing flashes of play-making ability during that span, Kwesi gave Mattison a contract extension with the hopes he could replace some of the load lost with Cook’s departure.

Through two weeks, that has not been the case at all. Mattison is averaging just 3 yards per carry and has only one rush for a first down all season — and had a costly fumble in last week’s 34-28 loss in Philadelphia. Minnesota currently ranks dead last in the league with a not-so-nice 69 rushing yards through two weeks. So what does the trade for Cam Akers mean for Minnesota and how should it be viewed?

Pros Of The Cam Akers Trade

Before diving into specifics of the player, the fit, and the role of Akers on the offense itself, just by looking at this trade on paper Kwesi has made another stellar move. Getting Cam Akers, a 24 year old with upside, for just a 2026 sixth-round pick is a great move.

Kwesi has made similar moves like this in his Vikings tenure already. Last season he traded a mid-round pick to Philadelphia for Jalen Reagor, and also moved a late-round pick to Houston for Ross Blacklock. Did those moves pan out the way Vikings fans wanted them to? No. But Kwesi being unafraid to make moves like these is something Vikings fans should applaud and appreciate.

This trade will allow Mattison to move back into a secondary role, where he has performed better in the majority of his career — when Dalvin Cook was still in purple. Presumably Mattison will start this weekend against the Chargers while Akers gets adapted to the system, playbook, and nuances of a very complicated offense. But, after a week or two, Akers could very well step into that starting role moving forward.

The familiarity with this system is another reason this move is a good one for Minnesota. Akers played under Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell during the 2020 and 2021 seasons, while he was the offensive coordinator of the Rams, and has had success with KOC as his primary play caller before. This should make the transition for Akers smooth and easier, which could get him on the field in a more high-capacity role sooner rather than later.

Vikings fans are split on this move, and I personally have my reservations as well (which we will get to later in this article) but let’s face it: The run game couldn’t get much worse. A move in some capacity was bound to happen sooner or later, and after Kareem Hunt signed with Cleveland earlier Wednesday morning, the Vikings did not have a ton of upgrade options available to them that fit the scheme, besides Akers. There is virtually no risk to this trade, as the team only gave up a sixth rounder in 2026, and the reward could be Akers returning to his old form that we saw earlier in his Rams tenure, before the Achilles injury.

The Reservations Of The Cam Akers Trade

On paper there are not any “Cons” to this deal. Minnesota got a potential starting RB and a potential upgrade to their bad run game for a very late round draft pick that is not for another two years. However, there are some things that Vikings fans should be weary of and take note of in the wake of the Cam Akers trade.

As mentioned before, Kwesi has not been shy about trading away draft picks for players who need a change of scenery. Reagor and Blacklock were both acquired last season with the hopes they could revitalize their career in Minnesota, and both were unsuccessful and were waived this off-season. Will Cam Akers have the same fate?

That seems unlikely. However, as much as we can appreciate and commemorate Kwesi’s ability to make these moves, we can also be weary after the mixed results these moves have produced for Minnesota so far.

Akers, like Mattison, is also very inefficient and performs better as a secondary piece rather than a lead back. In Week 1, Akers averaged an abysmal 1.3 yards per carry on 22 attempts. That led to his healthy scratch in Week 2. Vikings fans may need to lower their expectations for Akers in this deal; this isn’t a trade for a bell-cow, workhorse back. This is a trade for a piece to help complement Mattison and hopefully get the ground game going in the right direction.

Final Thoughts

On paper, the Cam Akers trade is a win for both parties The Rams got rid of a player they no longer wanted in their organization, and Kwesi, yet again using his “Moneyball” mentality, gets a young player with potential for very little draft capital.

The Vikings run game could not get much worse, so bringing in Akers — or anybody else — was going to happen at some point. The move happening this early in the season is a sign the front office and coaching staff believe this team can turn their 0-2 start around fairly quickly.

What this means for the Vikings as far as the direction of their franchise past this year has yet to be determined, but it is going to be a lot of fun to follow.

Five Things We Learned In Week 2 Of The NFL Season

If anybody thought this NFL season was going to be a normal one, they were clearly mistaken. Severe injuries to star players like Aaron Rodgers, Nick Chubb and Saquon Barkley have already taken place, and we have several fanbases already calling for the termination of their coaching staff. There is a lot of football left, but there is a lot that we can learn from this past week’s games in the NFL. Here’s what we learned from Week 2.

What We Learned in Week 2 #1:

It’s Time To Be Concerned In Chicago

The Bears and quarterback Justin Fields were a lot of analysts pick to take the next step. Fields looked promising throughout the end of last season, and the team added play-makers across the board in DJ Moore, Tremaine Edmunds, and Yannick Ngakoue to help get the roster to the next level. However, after two weeks Fields looks completely lost in the pocket, and is seemingly completely misreading defenses missing wide open targets, and called out the coaches for his “robotic” play to start the season off.

Photo Credit: AP Photo/Scott Audette

Fields since clarified these comments, noting that “he has to play better”, but the fact that the comments were even made by the franchise quarterback in the first place is alarming. As for the defense, they are playing poorly, and are battling injuries in the secondary. On top of that it has already lost its defensive coordinator to unknown circumstances (more information on that when the situation becomes clearer).

Luckily for the Bears, they have multiple draft picks again in this upcoming draft to add talent if the team can’t turn things around soon. Time will tell if it is going to be this coaching staff and regime that are the ones to make those selections.

What We Learned in Week 2 #2:

Daniel Jones Isn’t Worth The Contract

The Giants squeaked by the Arizona Cardinals this past weekend after a crazy second half comeback down 20-0. However the storyline from that game shouldn’t be the comeback, or even the Giants injuries to Andrew Thomas and Saquon Barkley, but the play of Daniel Jones not warranting the 4 year $160 million dollar contract he signed this past off-season.

Jones through two weeks has 425 yards with 2 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. Those stats don’t look horrible until you dig into them, as the majority of them came in the second half of this week’s game against Arizona, who most deem as the worst team in the NFL. He played well in the second half against Arizona, but will we see that play consistently against much better teams? That is still to be determined.

Luckily for the Giants, the contract does have an out after next season if Jones does not elevate his game to take the Giants to the next level. It is going to be hard to buy into the Giants as a serious threat in the NFC East with Dallas, Philadelphia, and now seemingly Washington in that division. But more than that, it is hard to buy into the Giants with Daniel Jones as their quarterback moving forward.

What We Learned in Week 2 #3:

Brandon Staley Should Have Been Fired Last Season

This take should not be a surprise to anybody. Brandon Staley’s coaching malpractice is costing the Chargers football games. Justin Herbert is arguably the most gifted quarterback in the league when it comes to physical football traits, and Kellen Moore is one of the league’s most creative offensive minds in the league. The Chargers are fourth in the league in total offensive yards and sixth in the league in points through two weeks. Herbert is playing at a near MVP level, and the Chargers are getting contributions from everybody on offense.

So why are the Chargers 0-2? Their defense.

The Chargers have allowed the most total yards through two weeks this season at 438 yards per game, and the third most points through two weeks at 31.5 a game. With the amount of money invested in players like Khalil Mack, J.C Jackson, Derwin James, Sebastian Joseph-Day, and Joey Bosa, the defense should be performing better than it is. The blame should be placed on nobody else other than the architect of the defense; head coach Brandon Staley.

Staley was on the hot seat after last season and that seat has only gotten hotter through two weeks this year.

What We Learned in Week 2 #4:

It’s Time To Respect Eric Bienemy As A Viable Head Coaching Candidate

Eric Bienemy has gone through numerous NFL head coaching interviews over the last several seasons after successful years with Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs, but to no avail. This past off-season, Bienemy took a chance, bet on himself, and took the offensive coordinator job of the Washington Commanders. He did so without certainty at the QB position.

Through two weeks, the Commanders are 2-0, and Sam Howell looks like a true NFL starter. Last season the Commanders ranked in the bottom half in points per game, yards per game, and passing yards per game. Under Bienemy this season, the Commanders are seventh in the league in points per game, and look like a much more efficient offense.

If Bienemy is able to keep this performance up throughout the entire season, he can shake off the comments about needing Andy Reid or Patrick Mahomes, and has a really good chance at making a case for this own head coaching gig next off-season.

What We Learned in Week 2 #5:

Houston Is Heading In The Right Direction

This team is not good, but man they are fun to watch. The Texans are letting rookie quarterback CJ Stroud sling the ball all over the place, and the offense has looked quite dynamic in his first two starts, averaging the fifth most passing yards in the league. Stroud looks electric, even without a consistent running game behind him or offensive line in front of him, and Nico Collins and Tank Dell are a very fun duo at wide receiver to watch.

However, the team is 0-2, and that should not be a surprise. The roster is not filled with enough talent, yet, to compete at a high enough level to win games consistently, and that was expected. One thing Houston’s front office, coaching staff, and fans can be happy about is the development of their new franchise QB. It has been a long time since Houston has gotten consistent play at the position, and now they finally have their guy, Stroud, at the helm of this rebuild.

Getting Stroud reps and getting more talent around him should be the next step of this regime to take the leap into consistently winning games.