- The Vikings’ four losses have come to teams with a combined record of 15-2
- Atlanta is 27th overall in total DVOA (-13.6%)
I, like almost every other member of the betting public, have been burned countless times by the Atlanta Falcons over the past three years.
On paper, they’re explosive offensively and good enough defensively to keep themselves in games. But on the field they come up with different ways to disappoint every week. I got so fed up with them that I made a deal with myself to never bet them again (after I bet them in Week 5 against the Panthers).
The 1-4 Vikings, this week’s opponent, have been disappointing in their own right, but Atlanta is on a completely different level. Through Week 4, the Falcons were 27th in overall DVOA at -13.6%. Matt Ryan is 17th in the league in QBR and has thrown just seven touchdowns despite passing for 1,472 yards.
There is no reason Ryan should be completing just 56.8% of his passes with Julio Jones, Hayden Hurst, Calvin Ridley, Todd Gurley and Russell Gage around him. Their issues ran deeper than talent, so, following this week’s loss to Carolina, head coach Dan Quinn and GM Thomas Dimitroff were both fired. But what does that mean for this week?
Some may expect a boost off the back of the decision to clean house, but I’m not going to give the benefit of the doubt to a team that is 1-4 against the spread in 2020.
Even at 1-4 overall, the Vikings have put up a 3-2 record against the spread and their four losses come to teams with a combined record of 15-2.
Minnesota will likely be without leading rusher Dalvin Cook, who is nursing an abductor strain, but backup RB Alexander Mattison put up 112 yards on 20 carries last week and should be able to get the job done against a bad Atlanta defense.
Kirk Cousins also has to do a better job of taking care of the ball. His seven interceptions are second most in the NFL and could prevent a decent Vikings team from burying a terrible Falcons team.
The Vikings are laying 3.5 points, and I think I’d be comfortable with them up to 5 or 6, so I’ll be riding Minnesota here. I also like the over 55.5. On Tuesday night, the over sits at +100, and both these teams average more than 55.5 total points per game this season (56.8 for Minnesota and 56.6 for Atlanta).
NFL Expert Picks
Vikings -3.5 @ +100
Over 55.5 @ +100
NFL Free Picks
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