The first month of the 2012 NFL Schedule is over and we have seen some extremely exciting football. The number of close games and upsets has made this a tremendous season to be a NFL gambler. As the season moves on Online Sportsbooks have more games to draw on when setting their betting markets, which means our handicapping as gamblers needs to be even better. Our NFL gambling experts at Online Gambling have analyzed every game in week 5 and found the best betting play for each game.
The Arizona Cardinals have surprised everybody to start the season 4-0. They were lucky to get out of jail last week against the Miami Dolphins but the form of quarterback Kevin Kolb continues to be impressive. The Rams upset the Seattle Seahawks in week 4 and would love to do the same to their other NFC West rivals. However, the Rams will need to show more on offense and not rely on the boot of Greg Zuerlein to win games. The Cardinals just keep on winning and they should be able to defeat the Rams for the third time in a row. At odds of -121 at Online Sportsbooks they are one of the best betting plays of the week.
Best Betting Play: Bet on the Arizona Cardinals to win (-121 at Bovada)
Both the Giants and the Browns lost close games in week 4. The Browns defense played extremely well against the Baltimore Ravens but offensive errors cost them once again with a Brandon Weeden pass that was intercepted proving to be the difference between the two sides. The Giants blew several opportunities to beat the Eagles including a missed Lawrence Tynes field goal in the final seconds of the game. This should be a close and low scoring encounter. The Browns defense should cause the Giants some trouble and therefore Eli Manning will have to be in top form. The Giants should win but it is difficult to see them beating the spread of 9.5 points currently being set by Online Sportsbooks.
Best Betting Play: Bet on the Cleveland Browns to beat the spread of +9.5 (-116 at Bovada)
The Cincinnati Bengals have flown under the radar so far in 2012 but have complied an excellent record of 3-1. Star wide receiver AJ Green continues to impress and is one of the best big play players in the NFL. The Dolphins almost pulled off a major upset against the Cardinals in week 4, with quarterback Ryan Tannehill throwing for a career high 431 yards. This bodes well for the Dolphins who have had to rely far too much on their running game this season. The odds on offer in this game aren’t very attractive so we suggest skipping this game from a gambling perspective.
This is another game that doesn’t have much appeal from a gambling standpoint. The Ravens are a very consistent team who rarely lose games as favourites but at odds of -250 it is difficult to get excited about them as a betting proposition. The Chiefs have struggled in 2012 and the pressure is really on quarterback Matt Cassel who needs a strong performance in this game to keep his job. The spread of 4.5 points seems about right as the Ravens generally don’t win games by huge margins.
The Atlanta Falcons almost had their undefeated record ended by the Carolina Panthers in week 4. It took a last minute field goal from Matt Bryant to get them out of jail and they will be desperate to have an easier outing against the Redskins. The Redskins also won their game with a last minute field goal, which was set up by some outstanding play from rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III. The Falcons will need to do a better job shutting down RG3 than they did Cam Newton last week. However, the Falcons have shown in 2012 they are capable of putting up big scores and with the spread betting market set at 3 by Online Sportsbooks they are an excellent gambling play.
Best Betting Play: Bet on the Atlanta Falcons to beat the spread of -3 (-108 at Bovada)
The Green Bay Packers bounced back from their controversial loss to the Seattle Seahawks in week 3 with a narrow victory over the New Orleans Saints. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers appears to have found form which doesn’t bode well for the Colts chances in this game. The Colts are coming off a bye week and need to win to improve their record to 2-2. However, this appears unlikely as it is very difficult to see the Colts secondary defense being able to stop Rodgers and his receiving corps. The Packers would love to send a message to the rest of the NFL with a big win so the Packers to beat the spread are an excellent bet.
Best Betting Play: Bet on the Green Bay Packers to beat the spread of -7 (-105 at Bovada)
This is a battle between two sides whose offensive lines have let them down significantly in 2012. Both Michael Vick and Ben Roethlisberger have been under consistent pressure from opposition defenses meaning that their sides offensive production has been very inconsistent. This is a tough game to handicap because of the injuries on both squads. Because of this we are suggesting no betting plays on this game as it is too early to tell what players will actually be suited up on Sunday.
This is another game between two very inconsistent sides. The Carolina Panthers gave the Atlanta Falcons a big scare last week but were unable to come up with the victory while the Seahawks looked atrocious against Rams. However, the Seahawks have shown an ability to bounce back from poor performances and they will be hoping young quarterback Russell Wilson will be able to take advantage of the poor Panthers defense. The difference is this game could be the Seahawks defense who have developed into an elite unit in 2012. We think that Online Sportsbooks have gotten the odds wrong in this game and therefore the Seattle Seahawks are one the best bets of the week.
Best Betting Play: Bet on the Seattle Seahawks to win (+130 at Bovada)
The Chicago Bears are a nightmare for NFL gamblers because of their inconsistent form so we would generally encourage bettors to ignore them from a gambling perspective. They should be able to beat the average Jaguars side but at odds of -250 it really isn’t worth taking the risk.
The Buffalo Bills will be desperate to bounce back from their disappointing loss to the New England Patriots with an upset victory over the 49ers. The Bills led the Patriots going into the second half but their defense fell to pieces and was picked apart by Tom Brady. The 49ers showed no mercy to the New York Jets in week 4; embarrassing them 34-0. The 49ers leant heavily on their running game and that appears to be their best option going forward. Online Sportsbooks have set them a difficult task to beat the spread (9.5) points but if they can replicate their performance they should be able to do it comfortably. However, this rivalry is noted for throwing up unusual results so there is a definite risk involved.
The Minnesota Vikings have overcome a tough schedule to start the season with an impressive record of 3-1. Second year quarterback Christian Ponder is developing into a good young player and Adrian Peterson’s return from injury has been miraculous. The Titans haven’t been able to string together good performances and have just one win from four games. One promising sign from their loss to the Texans was the performance of Chris Johnson who rushed for a season high 141 yards. However, that was offset by the potentially season ending injury to young quarterback Jake Locker. Whether Locker plays or not it is difficult to see the Vikings beating the Titans. However, Online Sportbooks appear to have gotten the odds right in this game so there isn’t much value on offer.
This is easily the game of the week with future hall of fame quarterbacks Tom Brady and Peyton Manning facing off for the first time since Manning left the Colts. Brady has a 9-4 record against Manning but their meetings are historically close. Both quarterbacks are finding their best form; both leading their sides to big wins in week 4. Online Sportsbooks have given the Broncos a start of 6.5 points in this game and that should be enough for Manning to lead his team to victory over the spread. The last seven games played between the pair have been decided by less than a touchdown so this appears to be a very safe bet.
Best Betting Play: Denver Broncos to beat the spread (+6.5) (-110 at Bovada)
Amazingly, the New Orleans Saints are still yet to win a game in 2012 after a missed field goal cost them against the Green Bay Packers last week. History says they need to win this game as no side has ever started the NFL season 0-5 and qualified for the playoffs. The Chargers got their season back on track with a comfortable victory over the Chiefs and are now outright leaders of the AFC West. However, there are still question marks over running back Ryan Matthews and their offensive line. The Saints should finally breakthrough for their first win of the season but at their current odds they aren’t an attractive betting play.
The New York Jets season is now officially in crisis mode after their embarrassing loss to the San Francisco 49ers in week 4. The calls for Tim Tebow to replace Mark Sanchez as starting quarterback have now grown stronger and will continue to do so unless the Jets start winning. It is extremely difficult to see that happening against the Texans. Houston are one of the most professional sides in the NFL and are superior to the Jets on both sides of the football. Realistically this game shouldn’t even be close and the Texans are at excellent odds at Online Sportsbooks to beat the spread.
Best Betting Play: Houston Texans to beat the spread (+9) (+106 at Bovada)
You can bet on every game in the 2012 NFL schedule at Bovada.