NFL FOOTBALL PICKS ATS - FREE WEEKLY EXPERT PREDICTIONS

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Sunday Oct 18, 2020
With the Rams' pass-rush humming along nicely after an 8-sack game last week, I see the San Francisco offensive line really being up against it, which doesn't offer a lot of promise for the wayward Garoppolo or whoever else ends behind center. And with how well the LA secondary is playing, albeit against some substandard offenses, it's hard to envision this being the week for a huge San Fran offensive about-face. I see the Rams offense taking it to the ravaged Frisco “D,” enough to get out of the Bay Area with a win and cover on Sunday night. I'm taking the Rams.
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Rams -3
Sunday Oct 18, 2020
If I had any confidence the Bengals could rebound in a strong way, I would likely back the Bengals in this spot, getting nearly double-digit points against a limited Colts offense. However, I don't see many paths to the Bengals rebounding here. Cincinnati's offensive line is horrible. They have failed to open holes for running back Joe Mixon, and they have been awful in pass protection as well. Both of these facets are strengths for the Colts defense, and I expect this to be another somber afternoon for Bengals fans. For that reason, I would favor the Colts and the points if I had to pick the side. However, I believe the best value for both struggling offenses is the under 45.5 against the total. Even if Cincinnati performs better than expected, there are several paths to keep this game under the listed total, which is the best probable play for this match-up.
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Under 45.5
Monday Oct 12, 2020
Both these teams are banged up, which makes 7 points look like more than usual. New Orleans doesn't quite look like the team that won 13 games last season; they might miss Thomas. The Chargers, meanwhile, played both the Chiefs and Bucs tough and could have won both those games. Also,  Herbert looks like he can play at this level. We'll take San Diego and the points here.
 
Free Pick: 
Chargers +7
Sunday Oct 11, 2020
In all honesty, this looms as a potentially troublesome spot for Seattle. They could be a little down, and the Vikings could play well, which would make covering this number a major uphill battle. It's a spot where bettors can outsmart themselves. My mind keeps taking me to the Seattle offense and how well they're operating, going against a Minnesota defense that has been far from bankable. I see a shootout of sorts, with Seattle keeping enough of a distance on Minnesota to win and cover the spread. I'm taking Seattle.
 
Free Pick: 
Take Seattle -7
Sunday Oct 11, 2020

I don't normally like betting on bad teams, but the Redskins provide a lot of value in this match-up with the points they are receiving. I would not be surprised if Washington challenges for the upset, so I will back them with confidence this week.

Free Pick: 
Take Washington +8.5 (note the line has dropped since writing to +7.5/8 at most sportsbooks)
Monday Oct 05, 2020
Most signs point toward Green Bay here; the Packers are averaging 41 points per game, they're running the ball well, and while they're allowing 28 PPG, part of that has been situational. Meanwhile, Atlanta's blown big leads the last two weeks. However, the Falcons were also good enough to build those big leads in the first place. Green Bay is ranked in the top three in most NFL power rankings, Atlanta in the 20s, but realistically these teams are closer than that. They might not win this game outright, but we like the Falcons and the points here.
 
Free Pick: 
Take Atlanta +7
Sunday Oct 04, 2020

The combination of the 49ers’ injury problems and the Eagles’ urgency to get in the win-column before their season officially capsizes could make Philly an appeal underdog choice this week after they flopped three weeks in a row as the favorite. You can never completely dismiss the heart of a champion, and it could surface here. At some point, however, you either have the horses on offense, or you don't. And it's going to take a special spot to forecast success for the Eagles' offense, as I don’t see it surfacing this week. I’ll lay the number on the 49ers.

Free Pick: 
Take the 49ers -7 (pick made earlier in the week)
Friday Sep 04, 2020

I really like the Bears +3 at Bovada potential with Foles at quarterback, and I also think this match-up against the Colts is favorable. I would expect a low scoring game with the Bears controlling things late.

Free Pick: 
Take the Bears +3
Monday Sep 28, 2020

Baltimore is 21-3 with Lamar Jackson starting at QB, but 0-2 against Kansas City. Also, the Chiefs are coming off a less-than-wonderful performance last week against the Chargers, but we expect better this week. And we're getting three and a hook? We'll take KC and the points.

Free Pick: 
Take the Kansas City +3.5
Sunday Sep 27, 2020
I think the Green Bay "D" is better than they've shown in weeks one and two, where the "D" did well when it mattered. Losing Michael Thomas might not be an easy loss for the Saints to camouflage, as he was a valuable tool on this offense in many ways, and without him, the whole dynamic changes. While gifted with a back in Kamara who can do a lot of damage aerially and a good tight end in Jared Cook, they're a little strapped for wide receiver talent with Thomas out of the mix. Green Bay could be in a similar predicament if Adams isn't ready to go. I still see a tight game where taking the points seems like a good idea. I'm taking the Packers.</p>
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Packers +3
Sunday Sep 27, 2020

I believe Washington is definitely capable of the upset in this game and just needs a few big plays on offense to make it happen. I would not be surprised to see Washington's defense come up big similar to their Week 1 efforts against Philadelphia. The Browns are 0-5 ATS in their last five games going back to 2019, and I think that streak continues.

Free Pick: 
Take the Redskins +7
Monday Sep 21, 2020
The Saints produced less than 300 yards of total offense last week, and now they're without Thomas. So those 34 points they scored are a bit misleading. Meanwhile, the Raiders are now in their third season under Gruden. In his first go-around as head coach of this franchise, starting back in 1998, the Raiders played 16-16 through his first two seasons, then jumped to 12-4 and made the AFC championship game in his third. We're not saying they'll win 12 games this season, but we won't be all that surprised if they win 9-10. With that in mind, we'll take Vegas and points for our free NFL pick for Monday night.
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Raiders +5.5
Sunday Sep 20, 2020
Seattle's defense might be porous, but I'm not sure New England can take full advantage, at least not aerially. I see a coming down to earth for the Patriots this week in this road-spot, and it's worth mentioning they are the most depleted team in terms of coronavirus-related opt-outs, with their O-line and the "D" most hit. The Patriots could be very competitive in what should still be a hard-fought game, but I see the far greater spark on the Seattle offense playing the dominant role in this game. I'm taking Seattle.</p>
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Seahawks -4
Sunday Sep 13, 2020
It is always a challenge finding perceived value in the Week 1 lines, but even more so this season with not even some preseason action to analyze. I'm going to go with the trend in this series, which has seen seven or fewer points decide the last three games. The weather forecast is calling for a chance of rain and winds up to 15 MPH, so the run game should play a big part in today's game. No question the Bills had the better rushing game last season but the Jets offensive line has been retooled, and I still have faith in RB L.Bell returning to form. I expect another close match taking the points as the way to bet this.
 
Free Pick: 
Take the Jets +7 -130

(Bet on NFL Futures at Bet365)

San Francisco 49ers (+400) A lot of what they do well doesn’t jump off the screen and they lost some pieces, along with some contractual disputes emerging with some key pieces on the team. But still, what some suspected could happen someday occurred a little ahead of schedule, as the Niners finally caught some breaks on the injury-front and showed what they can do at close to full-power. I can understand the sentiment that their formula for success isn’t so iron-clad that they can’t slip up, especially with other contenders in the conference making a big push this season. But something tells me our eyes don’t deceive us and San Fran rightfully has earned the right to be considered the top team in the NFC.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+450) I like what Bruce Arians is doing in Tampa, particularly the way they played at times in the second half of last season. And this was with a QB who threw 30 picks. Get Tom Brady in there with all those weapons and we could see a surge on offense in a big way. That could bring the rest of the team up with him. Any number of things could go wrong with a quarterback who is 43. But this pick isn’t made in the spirit of them simply getting Brady. Their roster looks as strong as it has since they won the Super Bowl all those years ago. Brady has two top receivers in Chris Godwin and Mike Evans to work with and it would actually be a surprise if Tampa wasn’t in the postseason making some noise this season.

New Orleans Saints (+500) You have one of the more talent-rich rosters in the sport, along with a Hall of Fame quarterback who has Father Time leaning against him in a major way. The last two seasons have provided ultra-painful moments in the postseason, but the championship window is still open. A healthier Alvin Kamara, along with the newly-acquired Emmanuel Sanders should have this offense clicking, as Brees works behind what should again be a great line. The defense sees Malcolm Jenkins back in the fold and how the pass-defense performs will be a key part of their success. Even if Brees does slip a bit and the NFC South has gotten a little tougher, I see them in the mix late again this season.

Seattle Seahawks (+1000) A little further down the list, this could be the season where the Seahawks put it together. After seeing their defense spiral a little last year, look for that to be a major point of emphasis this season. Their linebacking corps should be tip-top, but their pass-defense has a ways to go—not a good thing in this conference. After they won the Super Bowl, they’ve won ten games in five of the six subsequent seasons. They never really fell off and I think a surge could be in the cards. With some better health on the running back front, in addition to more growth from receivers like young DK Metcalf, Russell Wilson should be in good shape as he makes another run in the postseason.

Kansas City Chiefs (+300): Getting a mega deal and coming off Super Bowl glory might lead some to expect the Chiefs to lose their razor’s edge this season. I wouldn’t be so sure. Nothing has occurred to appreciably alter their recipe for success—a formula that is built to deliver time and again. They might not be as hungry as other contenders on this list, but is anyone really questioning whether they’ll have a good season and be a factor in the postseason again this year? The thing about the Chiefs is that what they do well isn't something that is going to inexplicably go away. Having a winner at QB, a stocked cast of burners and a playmaking defense that is getting better doesn't just suddenly all fall flat without a good reason, and there doesn't appear to be one.

Baltimore Ravens (+325) Seeing Lamar Jackson and the Ravens come up short two seasons ago in the playoffs after a super-strong finish to the season was one thing. Seeing them fall badly to the Titans at home as huge favorites coming off a 14-win season in the divisional round of the playoffs is the last thing we remember this team for. It was definitely a horrible look. But one slipup, however bad it was, doesn't erase the fact that up until that point, they looked to be the class of the league. With an axe to grind this season, something tells me not to count out this group. Granted, even if they have another huge regular season where they’re blowing almost everyone out, it will be nervous-time come the playoffs. But look at it this way, if they had gone on and cleaned everyone’s clock en route to winning the Super Bowl, the price would be so low on them now that it wouldn’t be worth it.

Indianapolis Colts (+1100) Granted, watching Philip Rivers last season didn't inspire much confidence. Nevertheless, a change of scenery and less dysfunction around him could do wonders. It's a really packed roster on both sides of the ball, and Rivers, long hungry for some postseason distinction, will have a ton to work with on offense. Working behind a much better line with more continuity could really take this offense to another level, and I expect some good things from Indy this season. It’s not just the boost they get at quarterback, as other areas of this team are filled with players coming into their own.

Tennessee Titans (+1400) This could be one of the better value picks on the board. A few things we saw last season were not mirages—coach Vrabel’s handiwork with this bunch, Tannehill lifting the offense to new heights, and the late-season rampaging of dominant running back Derrick Henry, who put this team on his back only to be stopped by eventual Super Bowl champion Kansas City in the AFC Championship. I’m not sure what’s behind the sentiment that they will fade this season, but I wouldn’t be so quick to relegate them to the scrap heap just yet. Sure, it might not be easy to see them getting to the big one, as they had to scrap and claw to get into the playoffs, then catching a nice wave of momentum. Still, if anyone else slips and they build on the form they showed late, they look to be a definite contender.

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