We enter Week 8 of NFL betting which means the oddsmakers’ power rankings are a well-oiled machine, flushing out all the dead data from last year and running on clean and concise results from 2021.
At this point, both books and bettors know what teams are about, and we have to go to great lengths to find advantages with our Week 8 NFL picks.
That means looking past the analytics and digging into the situational muck that the schedule bubbles up. You know I’m talking about spot bets baby.
Here are my favorite letdown, look-ahead, and schedule spot bets for Week 8.
Letdown spot: Detroit Lions (+3) vs. Philadelphia Eagles
The anxiety of Week 7’s reunion with former franchise QB Matt Stafford is over with. The Lions gave it everything they had, with new head coach Dan Campbell emptying the clip to keep Detroit competitive in a 28-19 loss to the L.A. Rams.
It was a strong showing for the Lions, considering they closed as 17-point underdogs and held the lead going into the fourth quarter. But while that game was certainly circled on the calendar when the schedule launched back in the spring, this Week 8 date with the Eagles wasn’t.
Philadelphia laid an egg in Las Vegas in Week 7 and now plays its second straight game on the road in Motown, likely without the services of stud RB Miles Sanders. However, Detroit is ripe for a letdown after a big emotional matchup and this spread is starting to climb, with Philly giving the extra half-point hook on the field goal at some books.
Look-ahead spot: Seattle Seahawks (-3.5) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
This isn’t a traditional lookahead spot, in the sense that Seattle has a big matchup waiting in the wings after the lowly Jags. But it’s a look-ahead spot nonetheless, with the Seahawks looking past Jacksonville to a much-needed Week 9 bye and the potential return of Russell Wilson in Week 10.
As of this writing, Seattle still has to host New Orleans on Monday night in Week 7 – adding another layer to a sticky situational spot. Not only will Seattle be counting down the days until the break but will be playing on a short week this Sunday.
But wait. There’s more. Is that a whiff of revenge in the air? Yep, it is. Urban Meyer’s staff includes four former Seattle assistants, most notably castoff offensive coordinators Darrell Bevell and Brian Schottenheimer, who would love to stick it to Seattle.
Schedule spot: Cincinnati Bengals (-9.5) at New York Jets
The Bengals battle a rare schedule spot in Week 8, playing their third straight road game this Sunday. This is a true trio of road stops too – no bye week in between to catch their breath.
Cincinnati is scorching hot, with wins at Detroit and Baltimore the past two weeks. The Bengals are doing the damn thing on both sides of the ball and take on a Jets team coming off a 54-13 blasting in New England last weekend. To add to that woe, N.Y. rookie QB Zach Wilson is sidelined with a knee injury for the next few weeks, leaving the offense in the hands of... (checks depth chart) … Mike White?
Here’s a crazy fact: the look-ahead line for this game, set back in the spring, had Cincy as a 1-point pup in East Rutherford. Now, this spread opened Bengals -8.5 and jumped quickly to as high as -10 on Monday morning.
If that swelling spread and nasty schedule spot isn’t enough to scare you off, Cincinnati slides into a potential letdown off the big win over Baltimore this Sunday and could trip over a look-ahead spot with wounded rival Cleveland at home in Week 9.