The Indianapolis Colts opened up NFL Week 10 with a win over the Tennessee Titans in a game that could have dramatic ramifications in the battle for the AFC South. There are a further 13 fascinating matchups to look forward to this weekend, with six taking place in a packed late afternoon window. Can Joe Burrow and the Bengals spring a surprise on the Pittsburgh Steelers? Will Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks silence the Los Angeles Rams? Although nothing in football is ever certain, our NFL predictions against the spread for Week 10 may hold the answers to these questions and more.
All spread lines are provided by DraftKings and were correct at the time of writing. They are, of course, subject to change the closer we get to kickoff.
NFL predictions against the spread, Week 10
All spread lines are provided by DraftKings and were correct at the time of writing. They are, of course, subject to change the closer we get to kickoff.
Thursday, November 12, 8:20 pm ET
Indianapolis Colts 34 Tennessee Titans 17
Prior to the kick-off of Thursday Night Football, a full house of expert analysts at the NFL Network predicted a win for the Titans. Tennessee was most people’s favorites to emerge victorious, with DraftKings offering a spread line of -2.5. Despite this, I was confident that the Colts defense would prove a match for Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill, predicting a final score of Indianapolis Colts 27 Tennessee Titans 24.
Although the result and spread predictions were correct, I didn’t remotely anticipate the margin of victory for Indianapolis on Thursday Night. The defense held up their side of the bargain, limiting Tennessee to 294 total yards but it was the offensive production that outperformed expectation. Between Philip Rivers (29/39, 308 yards, one touchdown) and a running back committee, the Colts totaled 430 yards at 6.2 yards per play.
The Colts moved to 6-3 with victory and climbed to the top of the AFC South. The two teams meet again in Week 12.
Sunday, November 15th, 1:00 pm ET
Houston Texans (+2.5) @ Cleveland Browns (-2.5)
The Cleveland Browns come off their bye week to face a Houston Texans team that clung on to beat the Jacksonville Jaguars 27-25 in Week 9. Last time out, they were uninspiring as they limped to a 16-6 defeat to the Las Vegas Raiders.
The Browns struggled to get the passing game going with Baker Mayfield against the Raiders, and the running game lacked the potency that we’d seen earlier in the season. Reports this weekend suggest that star running back Nick Chubb could return for this Week 10 clash, and this could be a defining factor against a Texans defense that allowed the most yards per carry on the ground heading into Week 9.
The running game will also be important for the Browns, who will want to keep Deshaun Watson off the field. The Texans rank amongst the top teams in the NFL for passing touchdowns and yards per game, whereas the Browns defense has struggled to contain the opposition passing attack.
NFL predictions against the spread for this Week 10 matchup: The Cleveland Browns get back to winning ways and cover the spread in the process.
Final score prediction: Houston Texans 28 Cleveland Browns 31
Washington Football Team (+4.5) @ Detroit Lions (-4.5)
With Kyle Allen picking up a serious injury against the New York Giants, Alex Smith will be the presumptive starter for the Washington Football Team against the Detroit Lions. Smith’s comeback from injury has been one of the best storylines in the 2020 NFL season but was more akin to a nightmare than a fairy tale with three interceptions against the New York Giants.
Washington’s best chance of victory against the Lions will be to hand the ball to Antonio Gibson. The rookie only had 20 rushing yards against the Giants but did secure a touchdown and will face a Lions rush defense that allowed 202 yards and two touchdowns to Dalvin Cook. The former Memphis running back has shown so far this season that he can be an explosive, game-changing threat.
The Washington defense should be stout enough to stop a Lions offense that will have some uncertainty at the quarterback position after Matthew Stafford suffered a possible concussion as part of a rough night against the Minnesota Vikings.
NFL prediction against the spread for this Week 10 matchup: Washington defy the odds and pull off a win, covering the spread in the process.
Final score prediction: Washington Football Team 23 Detroit Lions 20
Jacksonville Jaguars (+13.5) @ Green Bay Packers (-13.5)
The Jacksonville Jaguars’ love affair with sixth-round rookie quarterbacks from the PAC-12 continues as Jake Luton threw for 304 yards and a touchdown in the defeat to the Houston Texans, his first start in the NFL. Although Luton was impressive, he now has to go toe to toe with Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau Field.
It’s difficult to imagine the Jaguars secondary stopping a resurgent Rodgers who bounced back from defeat to the Minnesota Vikings with a commanding performance against the San Francisco 49ers. The Jaguars have allowed one of the most yards per play of any team in the NFL, and that will be music to the ears of Rodgers and Davante Adams, who seem unstoppable at the moment.
Unless the Jaguars dominate the time of possession with James Robinson against a Packers rush defense that has been a liability at times this season, it seems unlikely that Jacksonville emerges with a result.
NFL predictions against the spread for this Week 10 clash: The Green Bay Packers cruise to victory, comfortably covering the spread.
Final score prediction: Jacksonville Jaguars 24 Green Bay Packers 41
Philadelphia Eagles (-3.0) @ New York Giants (+3.0)
Just three weeks after enduring the first rendition of this NFC East rivalry game, the Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants face off again. Thankfully for NFL fans everywhere, it isn’t a primetime game. There are other viewing options available.
The Giants’ last five games have all been decided by three points or less, and this game should be no different. The first game ended in a 22-21 Eagles win, and we’re looking at a similar outcome again in this game. Neither team has been particularly impressive on either side of the ball. The Eagles have allowed amongst the most rushing touchdowns in the 2020 NFL season, so if you’re looking for a game-winner, I would look no further than Wayne Gallman or Dion Lewis.
NFL prediction against the spread for this NFC East showdown: The Giants spring a surprise and cover the spread in doing so.
Final score prediction: Philadelphia Eagles 21 New York Giants 23
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-6.0) @ Carolina Panthers (+6.0)
Christian McCaffrey came back from injury to rejuvenate a Carolina Panthers offense that had been averaging just 22 points per game prior to their narrow defeat to Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. Unfortunately for Panthers fans, that renewed offensive hope will have been as brief as McCaffrey’s comeback. The running back has been ruled out of this Week 10 clash with a shoulder injury sustained during the Chiefs game.
Where the Panthers offense had been surprisingly impressive against the Chiefs, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers offense was disappointingly turgid against the New Orleans Saints. Tom Brady threw for three interceptions and the Buccaneers were forced to completely abandon the running game.
They should be able to lean on the ground game, like they did against the Panthers earlier in the season, and ride Leonard Fournette or Ronald Jones to victory. The Panthers run defense is still problematic and has allowed the sixth-most yards and fourth-most fantasy points per game to the running back position.
NFL predictions against the spread for this Week 10 NFC South clash: The Buccaneers bounce back with a win and cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Tampa Bay Buccaneers 28 Carolina Panthers 21
Sunday, November 15th, 4:05 pm ET
Denver Broncos (+4.0) @ Las Vegas Raiders (-4.0)
The last time the Denver Broncos and Las Vegas Raiders faced off, they played out a close-fought game with a Raiders failed two-point conversion giving the Broncos a one-point win in a low scoring affair. The Raiders hold a 65-54-2 lead in the head to head record for this AFC West rivalry, and they will start as favorites for this Week 10 clash.
The Broncos have the defensive advantage, although they have conceded an average of 35.6 points over the last three games. That would play into the Raiders’ hands, who have more yards per offensive play, total points, and total yardage than the Broncos. The Raiders also went toe to toe with rookie sensation Justin Herbert in their win over the Los Angeles Chargers, putting up over 30 points for the fourth time this season.
NFL predictions against the spread for this AFC West divisional rivalry: The Raiders win another divisional game but fail to cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Denver Broncos 24 Las Vegas Raiders 27
Los Angeles Chargers (+2.5) @ Miami Dolphins (-2.5)
In one of the most hotly anticipated clashes of the 2020 NFL season, Justin Herbert and Tua Tagovailoa go head to head in a battle of the 2020 NFL Draft first-round rookie quarterbacks. Both quarterbacks were involved in nail-biting Week 9 clashes but with very different endings.
The Los Angeles Chargers come in at 2-6 with the Miami Dolphins at 5-3. The two teams are very close in terms of both offensive and defensive statistics, with the Chargers having a slight advantage in terms of their rushing defense and the impact that will have on how the Dolphins use Tua in this game.
The Chargers have struggled to get over the line, and that could be the difference against a Miami defense that has done a good job of not giving up points, allowing the least points in the NFL prior to their shootout with the Cardinals.
NFL predictions against the spread for this Week 10 showdown: The Dolphins win again, covering the spread in the process.
Final score prediction: Los Angeles Chargers 23 Miami Dolphins 26
Buffalo Bills (+1.5) @ Arizona Cardinals (-1.5)
The Buffalo Bills upset the Seattle Seahawks to move to 7-2 and put themselves firmly in the AFC Championship conversation. The Arizona Cardinals lost to the Miami Dolphins on a missed field goal, falling to 5-3 but still in the NFC West fight after Seattle’s defeat.
Can the Bills secure back to back wins against the NFC West? They had struggled to contain the run so far this 2020 NFL season but held Seattle to just 57 rushing yards, and repeating that performance will be crucial to their chances of success against an Arizona Cardinals offense that contains one of the most potent running games in the entire league. They have also allowed 174 yards and three touchdowns to the quarterback position as they prepare to face one of the best rushing quarterbacks in the NFL in Kyler Murray.
NFL predictions against the spread: The Cardinals win but narrowly fail to cover the spread in a nail-biting game.
Final score prediction: Buffalo Bills 23 Arizona Cardinals 24
Sunday, November 15th, 4:25 pm ET
Seattle Seahawks (+1.0) @ Los Angeles Rams (-1.0)
The offensively explosive Seattle Seahawks face the defensively dominant Los Angeles Rams in the first matchup of these NFC West divisional rivals. The Seahawks come into the game off the back of a shellacking from the Buffalo Bills, whereas the Rams have had the bye week to prepare after their defeat to the Miami Dolphins.
Russell Wilson will be fired up after throwing two interceptions and being out-dueled by Josh Allen against the Bills. He will have to overcome a defense that had allowed the fifth-fewest passing touchdowns and sixth-fewest passing yards prior to the start of Week 9 of the 2020 NFL season.
The Seahawks continue to have one of the worst passing defenses, and the key to the game will be whether Jared Goff can capitalize on the Seattle defensive deficiencies. Goff has averaged 269 passing yards per game so far this season. That won’t be enough to take the Rams to their sixth win of the season.
NFL predictions against the spread for this NFC West rivalry game: The Seahawks bounce back with a close-fought win and cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Seattle Seahawks 31 Los Angeles Rams 30
San Francisco 49ers (+9.5) @ New Orleans Saints (-9.5)
A banged-up San Francisco 49ers team took a beating on the field against the Green Bay Packers, and with several key players still missing for the clash with the New Orleans Saints, it’s difficult to think that they get the win that will take them back to .500 for the season.
The Saints have been consistently one of the best teams against the run, neutralizing the main threat of the 49ers offense. If New Orleans continue to impose themselves on the ground defensively, San Francisco will struggle to make an impression through the air with Nick Mullens under center, despite Ritchie James having over 100 receiving yards in the loss to the Packers.
The 49ers have allowed 44 receptions, 324 yards, and two touchdowns to running backs, so you can once again expect Alvin Kamara to be the most potent offensive weapon for the Saints, even with Michael Thomas back in the lineup.
NFL predictions against the spread for this Week 10 clash: Saints win comfortably and cover the spread easily.
Cincinnati Bengals (+9.0) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (-9.0)
The Cincinnati Bengals come off the bye week to face the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers, who survived an early shock from the Dallas Cowboys to come from behind and move to 8-0 for the season. The Steelers have had their way with the Bengals in this AFC North rivalry, winning the last 10 games and holding a 66-35 advantage.
It’s difficult to see any other outcome than a Steelers win despite their struggles against the Cowboys. Their defense leads the NFL in sacks, quarterback hurries, and quarterback pressure percentage. That should strike fear into the heart of Bengals fans who have watched rookie quarterback Joe Burrow take an absolute beating behind a substandard offensive line. The Bengals defense has also struggled, giving up the ninth-most passing yards and third-most rushing yards per game prior to the start of Week 9.
NFL predictions against the spread for this AFC North rivalry: The Steelers remain unbeaten and cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Cincinnati Bengals 21 Pittsburgh Steelers 31
Sunday, November 15th, 8:20 pm ET
Baltimore Ravens (-7.5) @ New England Patriots (+7.5)
After being held to zero offensive points in the first half of their game against the Indianapolis Colts, the Baltimore Ravens found success on the ground with Gus Edwards and Lamar Jackson to move to six wins for the season. They face an out of sorts New England Patriots team on Sunday Night Football in a repeat of the 2015 AFC Divisional Round game.
The teams, of course, met last season when the Ravens were comfortable 37-20 winners, and it’s difficult to envisage anything other than another Baltimore win next Sunday. At the time of writing, the Patriots were yet to play their Monday Night Football game with the New York Jets, but on the basis of what we’ve seen so far in this 2020 NFL season, it’s hard to imagine the Patriots rush defense has what it takes to neutralize the running threat that the Ravens possess.
At the same time, the Patriots have found most of their success on the ground in 2020, and the Ravens ranked fifth in rushing yards allowed prior to the start of Week 9.
NFL prediction against the spread for Week 10 Sunday Night Football: The Ravens dominate on Sunday Night Football and cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Baltimore Ravens 30 New England Patriots 20
Monday, November 16th, 08:15 pm ET
Minnesota Vikings (-2.5) @ Chicago Bears (+2.5)
The Minnesota Vikings have won consecutive NFC North divisional duels in the last two weeks. They will be trying for the trifecta in their Monday Night Football matchup with the Chicago Bears, who have now lost their last three games.
The Bears are on a four-game win streak against the Vikings, and a fifth victory would bring them to within three games of Minnesota in the all-time head to head record. The Vikings have been at their best with the ball on the ground, and the Bears rush defense ranked in the bottom half of the NFL prior to their game against the Titans.
The Vikings have had one of the most porous pass defenses in the NFL this 2020 season and, although they are improving, the Bears can take advantage of this with Allen Robinson if they can get some consistent play from the quarterback position. That is a huge if.
NFL predictions against the spread for Week 10 Monday Night Football: The Vikings get their third straight divisional win but fail to cover the spread.
Final score prediction: Minnesota Vikings 24 Chicago Bears 23
If sports betting is your thing, and we urge you to gamble responsibly, check out the “Against the Spread” podcast.
Oliver Hodgkinson is an NFL Draft and NFL analytics contributor for the Pro Football Network. You can follow him on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson.