NFL Football Week 5 Game Predictions and Betting Predictions

Week 4 was the best week so far in picks. 12-4 straight up, 8-6-2 against the line, finishing with three .500 weeks in picks. It could have been much better, but something happened that is a lesson that can’t be forgotten: a half-point can make all the difference.

Ravens and Vikings didn’t end up covering. They were +3.5 and -2.5 all week, but when it came time to post on Friday, they fell on field goal lines. Not lost, but not won…by half a point, courtesy of a 17-point lead let go and a missed extra point.It would be unfair to post the better line when it’s no longer available, so there remain a couple of pushes that kept it from being a great week. Mistakes really in Denver and Detroit, and regrets as I mentioned Chargers and Cowboys.

On to week five, which once again has an early game on Sunday. As usual, we post the Thursday night pick before the game and the rest of the day on Friday. It will be announced in due course on @MARCAClaro and @hlazzeri13, so I recommend you to follow and activate notifications.

Betting line in brackets on Thursday afternoon (for TNF) and Friday for the rest, when they are published. The book is indicated at the end of the pick. The direct winner will appear first, the winner against the line in capitals and with the corresponding line.

Colts vs Broncos: schedule and how to watch on TV
NFL Standings. Here’s how the divisional standings are going.
Week 4 was the best so far in picks. 12-4 straight up, 8-6-2 against the line, finishing with three .500 weeks in picks. It could have been much better, but something happened that is a lesson that can’t be forgotten: a half point can make all the difference.

On to week five, which once again has an early game on Sunday. As usual, we post the Thursday night pick before the game and the rest of the day on Friday. It will be announced in due course on @MARCAClaro and @hlazzeri13, so I recommend you to follow and activate notifications.

Betting line in brackets on Thursday afternoon (for TNF) and Friday for the rest, when they are published. The book is indicated at the end of the pick. The outright winner will appear first, the winner against the line in capital letters and with the corresponding line.

NFL predictions and bets week 5 2022: Indianapolis Colts vs Denver Broncos.
NFL predictions and betting week 5 2022: Indianapolis Colts vs Denver Broncos.
Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos (-3.5, total 41.5).
Last week we finally won on a Thursday and swept the night games after a streak worthy of Kirk Cousins in primetime. That said, I don’t have the same conviction this week.

Colts vs Broncos might as well be called the Bowl of Disappointment. Two teams with high expectations in the preseason, but coming into Thursday with a lot of doubts, being two of the worst three offenses in the league in points scored, and the icing on this cake is injuries.

Indianapolis, with a concatenation of unfortunate events by the Chiefs, won in Week 3. They might as well go 0-4. They traded Carson Wentz for Matt Ryan and are the lowest-scoring team, with 14.3 points per game, and the only team without a game of at least 21 points so far. The offensive line has not been up to par in the past and Michael Pittman Jr. is the only known receiver on the team. To make matters worse, Jonathan Taylor will be out Thursday night. The Broncos have a great perimeter. Patrick Surtain II aims to erase Pittman like he did Davante in Vegas, so we don’t expect an offensive explosion, although they have some option to exploit the drop of safety Justin Simmons, Matty Ice could get more time to throw without Randy Gregory, and, even without JT, on the ground, Denver is horrendous against the run, as Josh Jacobs exhibited on Sunday.

On the other side, Denver is perhaps in a more precarious situation on offense. Yes, they have scored 23 touchdowns, their most so far, but the first 10 were in series that started in the rival territory and one more TD was in the final stretch, down two touchdowns against a preventive defense. Indy will be without Shaq Leonard, who made his debut and lasted one half before leaving with a broken nose and concussion, but they are still Top 10 in efficiency so far, with the linebacker playing just two of 17 quarters so far.

The Broncos have one confirmed down on the offensive line (Quinn Meinerz) and another who looks like he won’t play (Billy Turner). Javonte Williams is out. Russell Wilson has not looked good and did not practice at 100 because of discomfort in his throwing shoulder. The Colts play a lot of zone defense, where you have to anticipate and execute quickly, something that has never been Russ’ greatest virtue, as he keeps hunting for big plays. He has improved a bit in pressure and they are going against a patched-up line.

Let’s repeat what we’ve said the last few Thursdays: on Thursday, a short week, the best team usually wins. Who’s the best team here? Therein lies the dilemma. So far, all the favorites have won on Thursdays. Russ and his mobility might have more bullets to find a way, like against the 49ers, but can anyone trust Nathaniel Hackett’s coaching? The same guy whose own fans were counting down the clock? On a short week? And against a top defense?

Tough game, looks to be one possession and close. Like I said, maybe Wilson finds a way to run or whatever at the end, but considering the line passed on a field goal after the injury report, it’s extra enticing to take the points. There is a clear coaching advantage and despite many considering Taylor’s loss as the most important one, Indy comes in better shape on both sides. At worst, a 3-point loss is covered this way. So. COLTS (+3.5 at Betway) 20, Broncos 17.

New York Giants at Green Bay Packers (-7.5, London total 41.5)
The second week of early games in London. Coffee and start of the 14-hour marathon.

The good: it is the 31st game in London and for the first time two teams with a winning record will play. The bad: 3-1 for the Giants is not good at all see that we have a line of more than 7 points for the sixth time.

I love Brian Daboll, but they’ve beaten Titans, Panthers, and Bears, lost to Cooper Rush, and despite this quarterback roster, their defensive efficiency is among the worst 10 in the league. They suffer particularly against the run, as Dallas showed a couple of Mondays ago. Bad news when A.J. Dillon and Aaron Jones come in. Green Bay isn’t being explosive on offense at all, but Aaron Rodgers will be BY FAR the toughest QB they’ve faced this year.

The Giants will need some offense. Their line, save Andrew Thomas, is a sieve. Saquon’s breakaways have made up for down-to-down problems. Green Bay, for a while now, has not been a good ground defense, but we saw two weeks ago in Tampa, with the Bucs without receivers, that they clogged the box and contained the ground game. Something similar we could see at Tottenham Stadium and then the game goes through Daniel Jones, injured ankle, with multiple revolving doors on the line, throwing to Richie James and David Sills. Luck.

It’s a big number, but in London, it usually covers the better team (18-12 against the line, 21-8-1 straight up). The Packers’ lack of punch makes this somewhat risky, but this is no time to go with New York. Maybe if they had receivers back, but it looks like Toney and rookie Robinson are weeks away from returning. PACKERS 26 (-7.5 at Betway), Giants 17.

Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings (-7.5, total 44).
Minnesota is a better team than Chicago. That can be said for every Bears opponent, with Justin Fields and an aerial game worthy of prehistory: according to Stathead, you have to go all the way back to 1982 to find a team that completed 34 or fewer passes in its first four games.

A crucial variable in this game is that the Vikings are coming off a game in London and opted not to rest. The travel, jetlag and so on have made it slightly difficult for the five teams that didn’t have their bye after crossing the pond (2-3 straight up, 2-2-1 against the line, 2-3 to Under that team’s point total and 4-1 to Over the opponent’s, according to Action Network data). None won by double digits. One detail: the QBs on those teams were Andrew Luck, Blake Bortles, Joe Flacco, Jay Cutler and Tua Tagovailoa, only the former actually better than Captain Kirk now.

The purple defense has been a huge disappointment. Fields doesn’t anticipate like even Andy Dalton, so he won’t be able to dissect them like almost every QB has done this year. They could run them some, but the solution to that is to clog the box, which you have that luxury when the opposing QB isn’t threatening bypass. Still, Chicago averages 5.2 yards per carrying, fifth best, and they’re not afraid to do it even when trailing.

On offense, the Vikings should score without much trouble. Except for the day of the storm against the Niners, even Daniel Jones and Davis Mills put 20 points on the Bears. Cousins is better than them. On the ground, Chicago is still allowing more yards per carrying than Minnesota (5.1 vs. 4.6). The Vikes are 3-1, but have not exploded on offense: their high is 28 and required a Detroit collapse down the stretch, plus the extra point and field goals in the final minutes in London. Add in the fact that Chicago only lost by double digits, at Green Bay, with the asterisk of Fields’ TD/no TD, and what has already been saying about how it affects coming back from England without rest, and that opens the door for Minnesota to not be as sharp, leaving the back door open. Vikings 24, BEARS (+7.5 at Caliente. mx) 17.

Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-10, total 45.5)
The Bucs are coming off two losses in a row. Tom Brady is touched from Sunday night, not to mention the divorce soap opera. Still, this looks to be the time when they get back on track.

The matchup is favorable for them. Evans, Godwin and Julio would be back on the field. Atlanta is bad against the run and they don’t pressure the opposing QB. Brady & Co. should move the ball at will.

The Falcons are one of the offensive surprises of the year (#2 in success rate), unexpectedly sustained by ground: they run 70.2% of the time on first down, gaining 6.2 yards; so no problem establishing the run. Two problems: Cordarrelle Patterson is going to be out for a month and Tampa, despite swallowing 189 Kansas ground yards on Sunday, is among the best in the NFL against the run. It’s going to be up to Mariota, who to date hasn’t thrown for more than 230 yards and is coming off a 7-for-19 performance. Kyle Pitts won’t play. As much as Drake London has looked, it’s too much to ask. TB12 is 10-0 against Atlanta. 11 after Sunday. BUCS (-10 at Betway) 34, Falcons 17.

Miami Dolphins at New York Jets (+3, total 46).
Tua Tagovailoa will not play after the chilling images from two Thursdays ago. Going is Teddy Bridgewater, who is one of the best backups in the league, and with some motivation because, after his terrible knee injury, he went to the Jets, who never let him play. He’s going to get time. Jets normally don’t carry and generate little pressure. They are average against the run. And they have a lot of weapons.

So the game is put on Zach Wilson’s arm. Many are left with the ‘big’ comeback at the former Heinz against the Steelers, but mind you the first 45 minutes he was 8 for 24 with two interceptions. Good for picking up the pace, but the Steelers’ defense once again got the better of him when they carried, and without T.J. Watt they are not the same. Miami is a team that tends to carry a lot (#7). Last year, in Wilson’s only matchup against Miami, he went 13-of-23 with 6 catches. Key elements are missing on the Dolphin’s perimeter and the Jets have more and better hands, but their line has FOUR tackles outside.

Might as well be a game like that game quoted from last year. Close for a while, but in the end, Wilson has nothing to win it with. And we mentioned something said two weeks ago – Jets don’t handle success well, barely covering the line once after winning. Let’s go with Teddy Covers, no matter how much serious money there is coming down the line to New York. DOLPHINS (-3) 27, Jets 20.

Los Angeles Chargers at Cleveland Browns (+2.5, total 47).
One of the games I most want to watch at noon. A replay of last year’s 47-42, when the Chargers wouldn’t have won if not for Brandon Staley fumbling several times on fourth down in their territory. No one remembers that from Week 18.

I don’t expect anywhere near 90 points again, but replicable ground success for the Browns. They average 5.0 yards per carrying, L.A. allows 5.4. They struggle to shut down the corner without Joey Bosa.

Interestingly, Cleveland is still worst in ground defensive efficiency (#30 vs #18), but the Chargers are second worst rushing, with multiple downs on the line. Myles Garrett would return and Jadeveon Clowney has not been ruled out. Protecting Herbert could be a bigger challenge than against Houston. Their safest hands, Keenan Allen, is still out, and per se the Brownies have a good perimeter.

This is a matchup of very evenly matched-teams. There is a clear advantage, the aforementioned ground advantage of Chubb, Hunt, and company. And Cleveland is getting points at home. The line would seem to throw out a bait-and-switch for L.A., ‘less than a field goal with Herbert against a team that lost to Mariota’. In my eyes, it’s a mistake. BROWNS (+2.5 at Bet365) 24, Chargers 20.

Detroit Lions at New England Patriots (-3.5, total 45.5).
Mac Jones was ruled ‘doubtful’ – in whose head is it possible that Bailey Zappe deserves to be favored by more than a field goal against nobody?

Detroit’s defense looked awful against Seattle, they can be run on, but Zappe doesn’t have the arm to attack vertically nor receivers like Metcalf and Lockett to do so.

I admit it sounds crazy to back Jared Goff in an open stadium when he will be without D’Andre Swift, without two regular receivers (Quintez Cephus and D.J. Chark) and possibly also without Amon-Ra St. Brown and maybe even Josh Reynolds. . They have the offensive line that will give them time, no matter how much ‘The Monk’ Belichick showed them off in Super Bowl LIII. They can run even without Swift. And they are a team that, if they go down, fights until the end, like against Seattle. Goff already beat the Pats after losing the ring. And I insist: Bailey Zappe’s favorite? I can’t deal with that. LIONS (+3.5 at Betway) 24, Patriots 23.

Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars (-7, total 43.5).
Referendum for the Jaguars. If they are contenders to be the surprise divisional champion of the year, they bounce back from the monsoon in Philly with a comfortable win against the only winless team.

The ingredients are there. Houston doesn’t contain the run, Jacksonville isn’t excellent, but has generated carries for a lot of yards, and even the Chargers exploited the Texans on the ground. Bypass, they’ve also allowed big plays, and Trevor Lawrence isn’t going to lose five fumbles again.

Houston still doesn’t have a good offense. They can’t run, Jacksonville has been better than average at that, and watch out for pressure against Davis Mills. Seems like a lot of points for a divisional matchup, but I think the Jags win a blowout. JAGUARS (-7 at Bet365) 28, Texans 17.

Tennessee Titans at Washington Commanders (+2, total 43).
Washington is a toxic team. Aside from the whole owner Dan Snyder thing, there are rumors that Ron Rivera has already lost the locker room, which could explain losses by 16 and 15 to divisional rivals.

Now come the Titans, who won their last two games, in the nick of time and as best they could. They come in without rookie Treylon Burks, so a limited aerial game loses potency. Washington has been dissected every week, but the Titans love to establish the run despite Derrick Henry and his line not being what they used to be. The Commanders, if they’ve done one thing well, it’s stop the run, as much as many only remember Detroit running all over them. Another factor: Titans are at their best scheming, scoring early…and then they flame out.

The problem is Washington’s offense. It seemed like every time I turned to watch the game in Dallas, they were 2&20 or worse. They have seven first-half points in the last three games, which speaks to the fact that nothing goes according to plan. Their line is bad without their center and right tackle, though Tennessee has dropped out there as well and their perimeter has been susceptible to long passes.

The line smells bad. Tennessee doesn’t deserve to be an away favorite against virtually anyone. On the other side, Washington is a toxic team. Tough call. Needless to say, I won’t put a dime on the game. I vowed not to, but I’m back down…for another week. COMMANDERS 20 (+2 at Bet365), Titans 17.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Buffalo Bills (-14.5, total 45.5)
The Steelers, in their history, had never been underdogs by two touchdowns. The record, according to Stathead data, was 13.5 points in Super Bowl XXX. Now, despite the ‘optimism’ of the QB change from Trubisky to Kenny Pickett, Buffalo is predicted to roll over them.

Zach Wilson (ZACH WILSON!!!!) scored 24 on them at home. Josh Allen and company are coming. They can’t run conventionally, true, but they’re still several rungs above New York, even though they have dropped at receiver.

The defense could give Pickett nightmares. Pittsburgh’s ground game is non-existent and Buffalo is top against the run. The perimeter is patched up, which opens up some possibility…if Pickett doesn’t succumb to pressure from a team that gets to the QB despite carrying less than anyone else.

Buffalo would be looking for revenge because last season, where the Steelers beat them on the road in week 1. The Bills, the last few years, have shredded bad teams in Orchard Park (by 22 to Washington, by 40 to Houston, by 15 to Miami, by 17 to Carolina by 14 to Atlanta, and by 17 to Jets). Pittsburgh is definitely not a top team.

Not a lot of favorable matchups for the Steelers, but the revitalization of the offense with Pickett, that Mike Tomlin is good as an underdog and that Buffalo might be thinking about taking on the Chiefs next week, allow them to sneak in the back door. Bills 27, STEELERS (+14.5 at Betway) 19.

Seattle Seahawks at New Orleans Saints (-5.5, total 45.5)
It will be the Andy Dalton show again with the Saints. That’s not such a bad idea, because for facing defenses like Vikings and Seahawks, who play a lot of zone, his veteran and quick decision-making is better than Jameis’ gunslinger mentality. He would also return Alvin Kamara to exploit one of the worst ground defenses in the league.

One of the storylines to start the year is Geno Smith. Seen Thursday, there is more evidence that Russell Wilson was shouldering some of the problems in this aerial game. New Orleans has lost pressure and coverage from last year, as Mariota, Cousins and even Baker have let on.

It could be another surprise game and a points game. The line smells bad because I don’t know who they think Dalton is to give up more than a field goal, but I think they play with a sense of urgency to evidence a 1-4 and find a way to win it. Saints 24, SEAHAWKS (+5.5 at Betway) 23.

San Francisco 49ers at Carolina Panthers (+6.5, total 39.5).
Carolina hasn’t gone over 300 yards in the offense this year, facing overrated defenses like the Browns, Giants, Saints and Cardinals. Now come the Niners, a top defense.

Carolina’s defense is respectable. Top 10 against the run, which helps against what San Francisco is looking to do, which isn’t lighting up the electronic: Garoppolo has 27 points in eight quarters as a starter. There’s the issue of the line, without Trent Williams, which the Rams couldn’t exploit.

Jimmy G throws phantom passes once in a half. There’s always a risk with that, more so when they come pumped up from winning on Monday. Carolina is a toxic team, but like Washington, the line is bad. Garoppolo for a TD away from home? Sucks to do this, but in a game that aims to be low points, you have to take almost a TD. 49ers 17, PANTHERS (+6.5 at Bet365) 13.

Philadelphia Eagles at Arizona Cardinals (+4.5, total 48.5).
Two teams exemplify how things have changed in a month. All summer, Arizona was a 2-point favorite. It went down, down, down, and now Philly is favored by more than a field goal.

Don’t get me wrong: it’s justified. The Cardinals’ offensive stagnation problems, which usually came down the stretch of the year, showed up early without DeAndre Hopkins. They’re trying to do something in comeback mode with Kyler working miracles. Now they go up against a top defense. Against the Rams, it cost them their lives. Carolina held them for a half until it was too many Baker giveaways.

The Eagles are the inverse: their great design has allowed them to take leads, put the car in neutral and come in gliding in the second halves, although you have to give them credit for that coming-of-age win despite going down 14-0 to the Jags in the rain. To make matters worse, Arizona’s defense is the worst in the league when teams take more than 2.5 seconds to throw. It’s usually the quarterbacks buying time. Jalen Hurts says ‘hold’.

There are two solid reasons not to take the points with Philly: Kyler is in comeback mode (though against the Rams it didn’t happen) and the Eagles will be playing Dallas next week. The hated rival, who has them as their kids, maybe with Dak back and in a matchup that could mean the division. Maybe they’re not so focused. Keep an eye on the first-half lines, Philly out there was giving up less than a field goal so you avoid garbage time. But Arizona is a bad team. Philly looks like the best in the NFC. If Rams won easily in the desert, I see a repeat. Go Birds!EAGLES (-4.5 at Betway) 28, Cardinals 21.

Dallas Cowboys at Los Angeles Rams (-5.5, total 43).
Considering the situation, it should be time to get off the Cowboys’ boat. The fervor for Cooper Rush exceeds all logic because it’s not like he’s emulating Mahomes either. He beat Cincinnati with some fortune, plus the Giants and Washington. His 4-0 start and 90 rating are nice, but he hasn’t thrown for 250 yards this year. He’s being asked to keep his foot in his mouth. There is data comparing him to Garoppolo. That’s fine for your backup, but from that to thinking about sitting Dak…and looking at the opponents.

The Rams will be the best defense they’ve faced. Running on them is tough. They have holes on the perimeter because of several drops, but there’s the pressure of Aaron Donald and company. And even with so much praise, Rush has never topped 25 points.

Dallas’ defense deserves more credit. Again, an asterisk for opponents. The pressure led by Micah Parsons is to be reckoned with, though they have an Achilles heel: they can be run on. Even the Giants could. The Rams may not be the best opponent to exploit this, because they have injury problems and talent in the ground game. Through the air, Stafford seems to only look to Cooper Kupp. Trevon Diggs doesn’t play inside, so Kupp will be dueling against one of Dallas’ weaknesses.

With Rush’s Cowboys, it all comes down to whether they can play with the edge. Maybe L.A. can get them out of their comfort zone and have them hit 12 and the chariot turns into a pumpkin. But with multiple problems running their usual offense, there’s no argument beyond a handoff fest that they can cover more than a field goal, and forget the venue: it’ll be infested with Lone Star fans. Rams 23, COWBOYS (+5.5 at 20.

Cincinnati Bengals at Baltimore Ravens (-3.5, total 48.5)
Very nice chess duel in a key game to win the American North. They know each other thoroughly, they know which paw they are fucking and whoever manages to succeed against what hurts them, takes it.

Let’s start with the Bengals on offense. Everyone but the Jets are limiting them on long passes by playing two deep away. They can’t run, so they congest the middle of the field and defy patience. Baltimore didn’t follow that recipe at all last year and they took 41 points every game, although it was with a different coordinator (the new one doesn’t carry a piecework load) and in December they played with a thousand and one turnovers on the perimeter. Cincy, despite facing bad defenses (Steelers, Jets, Dolphins), is not getting anyone off the field.

Now, with the Ravens on offense. Lou Anarumo built this defense to beat the Ravens. They have linemen who can generate pressure without charging. They invite the run, betting on their second and third-level speed to close gaps. You think of Baltimore and you think of running the ball, but injuries to running backs and linemen leave a lot of carries to Lamar and little success from the rest. Cincy has also found it can tempt Lamar if it sends eight in coverage; it has improved throwing, but is still not the best at catching short passes and will be without Rashod Bateman.

Cincinnati comes in with a mini-break after playing on Thursday. Baltimore is tough as nails in night games at home and this home losing streak is unusual. It’s hard to believe Baltimore is 2-2 when no team has led longer. It’s even harder to believe they can lose three in a row at home, but the loss of Bateman leaves Mark Andrews and little else in the passing game. The line is more of a field goal, which I can only see them covering if Lamar dons the superhero cape. Maybe, but Cincy comes in at a better time and seeing that it’s a few points in a game that will be worthy of the ‘bruising division’. BENGALS (+3.5 at Betway) 23, Ravens 20.

Las Vegas Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs (-7.5, total 51.5)
Two years ago, the Raiders won at Arrowhead and in Vegas, it was a last-second decision. Last year, KC won 89-23. Some middle ground should be seen on Monday night.

The defensive coordinator who enabled those massacres, Gus Bradley, is no longer with the Raiders, though the gaps on the perimeter remain. They’re less bad against the run, though KC had plenty of success against Tampa’s wall. Moving the ball won’t be a problem.

If there is a close game, it will be because KC is swatting flies like against the Colts (seriously, how the heck did that happen?), or because Derek Carr has success moving the ball. Another near 200-yard day on the ground looks unlikely because the Chiefs are better than Denver in that regard. They could attack at all levels bypass, more so with the apparent return of Hunter Renfrow. They would have their offense at full strength. The line is bad and KC leads the league with 55 pressures, according to Pro Football Reference. Therein lies the key to this game not being a beatdown.

It’s a divisional matchup, but KC comes pumped up from trashing Brady and the Bucs on national TV. They have the date against the Bills coming up, so it’s understandable if they fight an opponent they beat by 66 last year. That opens the back door. Chiefs 30, RAIDERS (+7.5 at Betway) 24.

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