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NFL Betting Picks for Week 3 - Best Bets, Expert Odds and Predictions

Russell Wilson - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Week 3 includes a lot of uneven matchups. Three teams are double-digit favorites. I usually don't like taking such heavy favorites, but you will see there is one team that is just too attractive to avoid.

There are only two games with spreads of two points or less. I made plays on the over/under in the same games I played on the money line and the spread.

It doesn't look like the most exciting week of football. Even when it comes to the close games, a lot of them look ugly--Zach Wilson vs. Mac Jones and Raiders vs. Steelers, for example--but you never know what is going to happen on any given Sunday. (I sure didn't know last week...) I think the Broncos will make the Dolphins game closer than most people think, and it should be an exciting shootout. It is my top pick to go over the projected total.

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Week 3 NFL Betting Picks - Moneyline

Last Week: 0-1 on Moneyline, 0-2 Against the Spread, 1-0 on Over/Under Picks

Season-long Record: 1-1 on Moneyline, 2-4 Against the Spread, 2-0 on Over/Under Picks

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Las Vegas Raiders (PIT +120)

Sunday, 8:20 pm | O/U: 43

The Steelers and their high-scoring defense are going to pull an upset on Sunday Night Football. We saw how difficult the Steelers defense was last week on Monday Night Football when they held the Browns to 210 passing yards and 22 points and scored two defensive touchdowns. I evaluate the Steelers defense as the No. 8 best defense overall, but they are even better than that in high-leverage situations. T.J. Watt and Alex Highsmith come through in the clutch with big sacks on third downs and forced turnovers. 

The Steelers' weakness so far has been defending the run. Their inside linebackers are averaged at best, and besides safety Minkah Fitzpatrick, their defensive backfield is subpar. They allowed over 180 rushing yards in both of the first two weeks, but those came against elite running backs--Christian McCaffrey and one quarter of Nick Chubb plus a big play by Jerome Ford. The Raiders' Josh Jacobs is no bum (although he looked it against tough defenses in the first two weeks). But even if Jacobs goes off, that would be better than the Raiders' lighting up the passing game. 

Jimmy Garoppolo is taking about three seconds to throw this season. He'll be eating a lot of dirt if he tries to hold the ball that long against the Steelers unstoppable pass rushers. Deshaun Watson took 3.09 seconds to throw last week, and he got sacked six times.

Pick: Steelers ML (+120), Bet 1 Unit


Week 3 NFL Betting Picks - Against the Spread

Los Angeles Chargers @ Minnesota Vikings (LAC +1)

Sunday, 1:00 pm | O/U: 54

Expect the Chargers to pull the upset. The Chargers lost two close games in the first two weeks. Last week, the Titans beat them in overtime in a game in which the adjusted score makes it look more like a tie. The fact that Austin Ekeler isn't practicing is less than ideal, but the Vikings have such a poor run defense that they could be torched by Joshua Kelley. Minnesota is allowing 166.0 yards per game on the ground through two games. 

But the Chargers will move the ball mostly through the air. They have the tenth-best receiving core in the league, and it's going up against the fourth-worst group of defensive backs. The Eagles didn't throw the ball much against the Vikings last week because they didn't have to. But when they did throw the ball late, Eagles receivers were open for many big plays. The Vikings overall are allowing the eighth-highest completion percentage.

Pick: Chargers +1 (-110), Bet 1 Unit


Arizona Cardinals @ Dallas Cowboys (DAL -12.5)

Sunday, 4:25 pm | O/U: 43

I don't like to pick double-digit favorites, but damn. This is the matchup that will make me break my practice. The Cowboys have been running up the score against low-quality opponents. They have scored 70 points in the first two weeks and have a 60-point win margin. The Cardinals are worse than either of the Cowboys' first two opponents. They are so bad that the Giants, whom the Cowboys shut out, scored 31 points on them in the second half. 

There are not many matchups that come along that are both tilted against the underdog this strongly and this likely to turn into routs. The 49ers might be almost as likely to defeat the Giants on Thursday Night Football this week. They are 10.5-point favorites. But I'm less confident in them beating the spread because they might be more content to run the clock down than to run the score up.

Pick: Cowboys -12.5 (-110), Bet 1 Unit


Denver Broncos @ Miami Dolphins (DEN +6.5)

Sunday, 1:00 pm | OU: 48.5

The Broncos offense has been playing better, and the Dolphins play the kind of football that can lead to shootouts. The Broncos won't close it out, but they will stay with the Dolphins and be within a touchdown and a failed Hail Mary away from going into overtime.

Pick: Broncos +6.5 (-110), Bet 1 Unit


Week 3 NFL Betting Picks - Over/Under

Denver Broncos @ Miami Dolphins (MIA -6.5)

Sunday, 1:00 pm | OU: 48.5

Both teams' passing offenses are cooking. Miami is No. 1 in passing yards per game, and Denver is No. 12, and they looked better in Week 2 than in Week 1. "Danger-Russ" was averaging 9.4 intended air yards per attempt last week against the Commanders. (He only averaged 4.0 in Week 1.) Tua only averaged 9.0 intended air yards per pass in Week 2 (and 11.1 in Week 1). 

The Broncos' adjusted scoring rate is the fifth-highest in the league, and the Dolphins are No. 1 by a wide margin. Both teams are allowing opponents to score at higher-than-average rates. 

Pick: Over 48.5 Total Points (+110), Bet 2 Units


L.A. Chargers @ Minnesota Vikings

Sunday, 1:00 pm | O/U: 54

I made my case that the Chargers will win, and it will be high-scoring. It could be 26-24. But 54 is the highest over/under of the week. PFF's Greenline model gives the under a 51.5% chance of hitting.

Pick: Under 54 (-110), Bet 1 Unit


Pittsburgh Steelers @ Las Vegas Raiders (PIT +120)

Sunday, 8:20 pm | O/U: 43

The Steelers' and Raiders' adjusted scoring rates are both below average (although not quite as bad as they look on TV). They both rank in the bottom half of the league in passing yardage. Vegas' offense, with Davante Adams, Josh Jacobs, and possibly a healthy Jakobi Meyers, is a little concerning for me if I'm taking the under side, but Pittsburgh's defense is good enough to neutralize them. Let's just hope the Steelers' defense doesn't ruin this one by running up the score.

Pick: Under 43 (-110), Bet 1 Unit

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