NFL Week 3: Our Picks Against the Spread

Patriots at Lions, 8:20 p.m., NBC

There are plenty of reasons this game is a top-tier matchup, but none of them have to do with the teams’ quality of play so far this season. The Patriots (1-1) have followed up last year’s Super Bowl loss with a narrow victory over Houston and a fairly embarrassing loss to Jacksonville. That’s still better than the Lions (0-2), who have allowed an ugly 78 points.

Among the plot points to watch:

  • Coach Matt Patricia going up against New England after having spent 14 years on the Patriots’ coaching staff;

  • Josh Gordon, the talented wide receiver, potentially playing for the Patriots despite a hamstring injury that was reportedly part of Cleveland’s decision to part ways with him;

  • New England’s defense, which has allowed 276 passing yards a game, trying to contain Matthew Stafford, who has averaged 323.5.

If Patricia beats his old boss, it would certainly make up for a disappointing first two weeks of the season, but expecting two bad games in a row from Tom Brady and the Patriots seems greedy. Pick: Patriots -6.5

Packers at Redskins, 1 p.m., Fox

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/20/sports/nfl-week-3-picks-schedule-spread.html

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