• Max Carlson

Max Against the Spread | Week 3: Can Mahomes Be Denied?

My crystal ball has been malfunctioning for some reason, and it’s caused me to end up at 5-11 for the second straight week. There are several intriguing matchups this week, so let’s dive in and see if we can come out on top.

Last week’s record: 5-11

Season Record: 10-22


Saints (+2.5) @ Falcons (-2.5)

The Saints are rusty, and should be 0-2, but squeaked out a much-needed win last week thanks to Cleveland’s kicker botching two big attempts. I think they get back on track this week, as Brees will look to expose a short-handed Atlanta defense on the road.

My pick: Saints (+2.5) (-110)

Packers (-3) @ Redskins (+3) [SLAM DUNK OF THE WEEK]

I’m all over this game as my weekly dunk. After the bizarre tie last week, I’m expecting a big day from Rodgers, with Alex Smith and the Redskins struggling to keep it close.

My pick: Packers (-3) (EVEN)

Colts (+7) @ Eagles (-7)

All signs point to a big Philly win in this one. No Marlon Mack or Jack Doyle for Indy, and Carson Wentz is making his debut for the Eagles. The big spread scares me, but I’m taking Philly to cover it.

My pick: EAGLES (-7) (EVEN)

Bills (+16.5) @ Vikings (-16.5)

Look, I know how bad the Bills are, and I know how good the Vikings are. This one won’t be pretty, but this isn’t college football. This spread is cartoonishly large, and I’m taking Buffalo to cover.

My pick: Bills (+16.5) (-110)

Raiders (+3) @ Dolphins (-3)

The Raiders have become nothing more than a fully operational meme factory at this point, and I’m loving every minute of it. Denver burned me last week by not covering, but the Dolphins look surprisingly competent, so I’m putting my money on them to cover 3 points against Jon Gruden’s Meme Militia.

My pick: Dolphins (-3) (-120)

Broncos (+5.5) @ Ravens (-5.5)

Two strong defenses, and two mediocre offenses. This should be a low-scoring slugfest, and if I had to bet it, I’d take Denver to cover. I can’t wait to watch all of the sneaky design runs for Lamar Jackson that end up getting stuffed at the line. Exhilarating.

My pick: Broncos (+5.5) (-110)

Bengals (+3) @ Panthers (-3)

I picked Cincinnati as an upset division winner in the AFC North, and I’m sticking by that. That defensive line is nasty, and the offense seems to be clicking. This week will be tough with RB Joe Mixon out, but look for Andy Dalton to attack through the air against the week Panther secondary.

My pick: Bengals (+3) (-110)

Giants (+6) @ Texans (-6)

Two atrocious offensive lines, and two young, up-and-coming quarterbacks in Deshaun Watson and Eli Manning. This is a crapshoot, but my newly refurbished crystal ball is informing me that young Eli will successfully utilize the weapons at his disposal to cover the 6 point spread.

My pick: Giants (+6) (-110)

Titans (+9.5) @ Jaguars (-9.5)

Even if Mariota was 100% healthy, I simply wouldn’t trust him against a defense of this caliber. I’m hammering the Jags on this one. 9.5 is a big spread, but it will take an act of god for Tennessee to keep this one competitive.

My pick: Jaguars (-9.5) (-110)

49ers (+6.5) @ Chiefs (-6.5)

As much as it pains me to write this, I just don’t see the 49ers’ young defense making enough stops to keep the team in this one. I hope I’m wrong, but the 49ers are simply outmatched here.

My pick: Chiefs (-6.5) (-110)

Chargers (+7) @ Rams (-7)

Call me crazy, but I think the Chargers win this game outright. After dismantling the Raiders and Cardinals, the Rams finally get to play their first NFL team. This will be a statement game for Philip Rivers, and even if they fail to win outright, I’ve got my money on them covering 7.

My pick: Chargers (+7) (-110)

Cowboys (+1.5) @ Seahawks (-1.5)

Despite how terrible that neglected offensive line is up in the Pacific Northwest, I can’t bring myself to bet against Russell Wilson at home with such a small spread against a mediocre Dallas team. Seattle will be getting Bobby Wagner back to help slow down Zeke, and I think that’ll be enough to cover 1.5 at home.

My pick: Seahawks (-1.5) (-110)

Bears (-4.5) @ Cardinals (+4.5)

I trusted Arizona to cover a huge spread against a good team last week, and they let me down in comical fashion. I’m not trusting them to cover a smaller spread against another good team that might actually kill Sam Bradford with Khalil Mack.

My pick: Bears (-4.5) (-110)

Patriots (-7) @ Lions (+7)

The Lions are bad.

My pick: Patriots (-7) (-110)


Steelers (-1.5) @ Buccaneers (+1.5) [FADE OF THE WEEK]

Both of these teams are doing the complete opposite of what most people expected them to do. I did predict this to be the year that Pittsburgh falls off, but I didn’t think it would look this bad this soon. In a game that I’d recommend avoiding, I’m rolling on the Fitzmagic train and taking Tampa at home in this one.

My pick: Buccaneers (+1.5) (EVEN)

Parlay of the week:

Saints (+2.5)

Packers (-3)

Bears (-4.5)

If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, call the National Problem Gambling Helpline at 1-800-522-4700

You can follow Max on Twitter here!

Stay tuned to 49ersHub for more game day info!