NFL picks against the spread, Week 8

Week 7 is in the books and Week 8 is here, so For The Win ‘s Charles Curtis and Steven Ruiz return to make their NFL picks. All odds courtesy USA TODAY Sports.

Week 7 recap

Charles: 8-6-0 (Season: 49-52-4)

Steven: 10-4-0 (Season: 56-45-4)



Dolphins at Texans (-7.5)

Steven: Texans

The Dolphins are still missing their starting quarterback (Ryan Tannehill) and will be playing without their two best receivers (Albert Wilson and Kenny Stills). And they’re going on the road in a short week.

Charles: Dolphins

Deshaun Watson isn’t healthy, and that will be a factor in a short week. Yeah, I know Brock Osweiler will start for the Fins.

Eagles at Jaguars (+3)

Steven: Eagles

I’m not buying into the London Bortles thing. The Eagles defense will give him fits, and you can run on the Jags D. Philadelphia will get its running game going and that will open up things for Carson Wentz.

Charles: Eagles

Not taking the bait, Vegas. I can’t bet on Blake Bortles the “home” underdog in London, especially when the Eagles defense can match the Jags’.

Jets at Bears (-7.5)

Steven: Bears

I think we’ll see the Bears defense get back on track and bait Sam Darnold into a few mistakes. The offense may not score as many points as it has in recent weeks, but it won’t have to in order to cover this spread.

Charles: Bears

The offense is clicking even if the defense has given up 31 points in two straight games. That group won’t have a problem against Sam Darnold. Bears by 10.

Redskins at Giants (PK)

Steven: Redskins

Don’t really get this line. The Giants are a mess on both sides of the ball after the two trades. The Redskins should be able to run the ball now that Snacks Harrison is gone. When Washington’s run game gets going, it usually leads to a W.

Charles: Redskins

Will the Giants make more trades by the time this game is played? Don’t let what happened last week fool you – the Skins’ defense is better than the Falcons’.

Browns at Steelers (-9.5)

Steven: Steelers

The Browns are starting to fall apart with Hue Jackson openly questioning Todd Haley’s offense. The Steelers have been slowly getting better every week but haven’t really put together a complete game. We’ll see it this week at home.

Charles: Browns

These two teams tied the last time they met, and although the Steelers were a road team for that matchup, I think this game will be close even with Big Ben at home.

Seahawks at Lions (-3)

Steven: Lions

I’ve been riding the Lions’ bandwagon these last few weeks and it keeps paying off. No need for me to change now. In a Schottenheimer vs. Patricia matchup, I’m taking the latter every time.

Charles: Lions

A battle of the 3-3s! The Seahawks have shown signs of life in the last three games before the bye week – a blowout of the hapless Raiders and two close ones against the Rams and Cardinals. The Lions come off an emphatic win against the Dolphins, which makes this game a bit of a coin flip. So I’ll lean toward the home team.

Broncos at Chiefs (-10.5)

Steven: Chiefs

This is a no-brainer for me. Andy Reid will have learned a lot from the first matchup and get his offense rolling earlier in the game. I could see Kansas City winning this by 20.

Charles: Chiefs

Kansas City is perfect against the spread this year. I see no reason to think the Broncos will keep this one close, and their offense isn’t good enough to keep up with Patrick Mahomes.

Buccaneers at Bengals (-4.5)

Steven: Buccaneers

The Bucs defense already looks better in the post-Mike Smith era, and the passing game continues to shine. If Jameis Winston avoids turnovers, Tampa Bay might even win this one straight up.

Charles: Bengals

Here’s your shootout of the week and I don’t have a clue here. If the Bengals’ defense wasn’t struggling, I’d think Andy Dalton and Co. would run away with this one. But then I also think the Bengals’ defense should be better.

Ravens at Panthers (+1)

Steven: Ravens

The Panthers remain too committed to the run, and it’s just way too hard to run on this Baltimore defense. Carolina will be held under 20, and the Ravens offense will hit on a few big plays.

Charles: Ravens

A missed extra point was all that stood between the Ravens and Saints going to overtime. I still have faith they’re a contender, and this is a game where Joe Flacco – not elite, but having a solid season – will thrive.

Colts at Raiders (+3)

Steven: Colts

I don’t even know if the Raiders are trying to win games this year, and the Colts are way better than their record indicates. Andrew Luck and Marlon Mack will have big days against a bad Raiders defense.

Charles: Colts

Prediction: Andrew Luck will throw for five touchdowns. How is this spread not higher!?

49ers at Cardinals (PK)

Steven: Cardinals

I’m still riding with Josh Rosen after a rough start last Thursday. I’m really interested to see what new Cardinals offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich has in store for this team. Not having tape on the new Cardinals play-caller will be an advantage for the home team.

Charles: 49ers

Josh Rosen has looked good at times, but it’s fantasy sleeper Raheem Mostert who’s the X-factor as runs all over the awful Cards defense for the win.

Packers at Rams (-10.5)

Steven: Packers

I don’t care how good the Rams are, and I fully realize they are the best team in football. But I’m not laying 10.5 points against Aaron Freaking Rodgers. This line is disrespectful to the league’s best quarterback.

Charles: Rams

Maybe Aaron Rodgers is a little healthier coming off the bye. But I don’t see a defense that just gave up 30 points to C.J. Beathard two weeks ago containing the Rams, or Rodgers working enough magic to cover.

Saints at Vikings (PK)

Steven: Saints

The Vikings defense isn’t quite what it was a year ago, and, quietly, the offense hasn’t been as good as the 2017 version, either. The Saints are the NFC’s second-best team and they’ll prove it this week.

Charles: Saints

They’re the better team all around. I’ll stop there so we can enjoy the Minneapolis Miracle again.

Patriots at Bills (+15)

Steven: Patriots

Oof, how is this the Monday night game? I wouldn’t bet on the Bills if the NFL let them play with 12 guys.

Charles: Patriots

Bill Belichick vs. Derek Anderson? Right.


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