We went 7-0-1 in our teaser rankings last week, but before we start celebrating, that push came in the worst spot possible: at No. 1. That means our Teaser of the Week goes down as a push, making us 4-0-1 on the season. But anyone who skipped the Seahawks in their teasers was likely sitting pretty.

This week, the clear buy team for me in teasers is Dallas. Yes, the Cowboys just lost their franchise quarterback, but they also happen to have one of the best — and maybe the best — backup quarterback in the game waiting in the wings in Andy Dalton. I had the dropoff from Prescott to Dalton at three points before the season, and even with Prescott playing his butt off before the injury, I don’t think you can bump that gap more than a point, if at all. Well, the Arizona-Dallas line flipped from Cowboys -3 on the lookahead to Cardinals -2.5 after the injury, a move of 5.5 points. That means we’re already getting some value on the Cowboys at +2.5, and teasing them up to +8.5 is a no-brainer.

I’ve done the legwork of going through all the lines as of Tuesday night and identifying the best teasing opportunities. Below, I’ve ranked all the sides I think are in play for teasers this week, considering only the standard six-point teasers. You can take the top two options and put them together for my Teaser of the Week, or you can be bold and try and hit a bigger payout.

What picks can you make with confidence in Week 6? And which Super Bowl contender goes down hard? Visit SportsLine to see which NFL teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from the model that is up over $7,500 on its top-rated picks.   

Ranking teaser options

1. Cowboys +8.5 vs. Cardinals

A key injury in this matchup that will go overlooked with all the focus on the Cowboys’ quarterback situation is that of Chandler Jones, who suffered a biceps injury that could knock him out the rest of the year. One of the best edge rushers in the league for years, Jones is irreplaceable on the Arizona defense, and his absence makes the task of keeping Dalton upright much easier for the Cowboys’ replacement tackles.

2. Ravens -2 at Eagles

The Eagles offense has shown signs of life the last couple of weeks despite their injuries, but good luck stopping this attacking Ravens front, especially with Lane Johnson among the walking wounded on the offensive line. I’ve been giving the Eagles defense the benefit of the doubt all season, but after they had no answer for Chase Claypool, we can probably expect good offenses to put up a lot of points when they face Philadelphia. And I don’t see how Carson Wentz keeps up on the scoreboard with the carnage around him.

3. Dolphins -2.5 vs. Jets

You sort of have to worry about this being a letdown spot for the Dolphins after going cross-country and ransacking the 49ers defense to the tune of 43 points. But I don’t know how the Jets find success on either side of the ball with how they’re playing right now. We should expect them to lose every game against the spread until further notice, and getting through a pair of key numbers here as a buffer makes perfect sense.

4. Bears +8.5 at Panthers

Here are two teams doing their best to convince the world their hot starts aren’t flukes, and with Chicago coming off extra rest, you have to like the Bears’ chances to keep this one close. The Bears defense is fourth in points per drive, second in third-down success rate and first in red-zone success rate, so while Joe Brady’s offense has exceeded expectations so far, I don’t expect them to put a lot of points up. In fact, they’ve failed to convert long drives into touchdowns themselves (27th in red-zone success rate), so a Carolina blowout seems unlikely.

5. Colts -2 vs. Bengals

Why is this so low in the rankings? Because I remain unconvinced by the Colts offense, and it seems Philip Rivers is capable of throwing any game away at any time. Joe Burrow had looked solid before getting decimated by the Ravens last week, so I can’t rule out a close game where the Bengals pull off a win. But more than likely the Colts take their superior talent and coaching to a cover on this teaser number.

6. Patriots -3 vs. Broncos

Bump this one up a slot once the line drops to Patriots -8.5, as you’ll want to get the -2.5 on the teaser. This presumes Cam Newton is ready to return after sitting out two weeks ago, but if that’s the case, it’s hard to see Bill Belichick losing this game.

7. Washington +9 vs. Giants

I wanted to put this one higher — in what world are the Giants beating a team by double-digits? — but you always run the risk of a bad team laying a complete egg, even in a matchup against another bad team. So Washington is definitely worth considering for a teaser and I fully expect them to pay off, but you’ve been warned.

8. Buccaneers +8 vs. Packers

This one should really be higher, but after Tampa Bay had trouble against the Bears, I find myself having trouble trusting the Bucs against one of the NFC’s best teams coming off a bye. If the Packers defense can model what the Bears did, we could definitely see Aaron Rodgers throw all over the Bucs and pull out a double-digit win. So even with home-field and the key numbers, I’m treading lightly here.

Lines to avoid teasing

Browns at Steelers (-3.5)

The Browns seem like a great pick here, but Baker Mayfield didn’t look right at the end of last week’s win, and the Steelers defense can throw together an elite performance at any time. The Browns are too good of a team in general to lose by double-digits in this matchup, but Mayfield’s health keeps this outside of consideration for me.

Lions (-3.5) at Jaguars

Teasing the Jaguars up to +9.5 sure seems like a smart move, but they showed on Sunday that they’re still a bad team that can have a terrible game against any defense at any time. With the Lions coming off a bye, maybe they can put a plan together to get up big in the first half and maintain their lead after the break. So this will be a pass.

Falcons at Vikings (-3.5)

The Falcons would be the play here, but we just don’t know how they’ll respond to the change in head coach. It’s not like Raheem Morris’ defense was covering itself in glory before his promotion to interim head coach. So the smart move is to stay away from this one.

Rams (-3.5) at 49ers

The 49ers were three-point favorites on the lookahead, so teasing them to 9.5-point underdogs screams value. But I believe if you think last week is a fluke, you should just take the 3.5 points on a straight bet and not worry about teasing them.

Chiefs (-3) at Bills

Both these teams struggled in Week 5, and I don’t trust the Bills with their banged-up defense to keep it close enough to tease them here.

Texans at Titans (OFF)

We didn’t have a line on this one at the time of writing this column, but I expect it to come in at somewhere around Titans -6. That’s a number you’re generally looking to tease down, but I could definitely see the Texans walking away with a win here, so this isn’t a teaser game for me this week.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here