We’re into Week 10 of the 2023 NFL season and it’s been a terrific one so far for Pickswise NFL handicappers to say the least. We’re up +37.9 units on our side and total NFL picks for every game this season, boasting a 147-122-4 record. With an interesting slate this weekend, can we add some more winners to that list? Let’s break down the NFL best bets from 3 of our best NFL handicappers as we look to help you bet better and make money on this season.
Chris Farley: Cleveland Browns +6 over Baltimore Ravens (-110)
Right now Baltimore is playing like the best team in the NFL. Last Sunday they plowed over one of the league’s best rush defenses entering Week 9, gaining a staggering 298 yards on 7.3 yards per carry. In totality, it was one of the most impressive performances we’ve seen from an NFL team all year, outgaining a playoff-caliber team 515 to 151 in total yards and leading to their fourth straight win. Frankly, there’s nothing negative we can say about the Ravens following their recent performances. Lamar Jackson is throwing with pristine accuracy and without hesitation in a new system he seems to have mastered, their WRs are looking more in-sync, and their defense looks as scary and effective as any in pro football.
Enter the Cleveland Browns. Many believe the Browns have the best defense in the NFL. It’s hard to argue after another all-world showing last Sunday. Sure, they were at home facing Clayton Tune, a QB that doesn’t even sound real, and the results were predictable. The Cardinals failed to muster a single point, losing 27-0, and even more unbelievably– they only gained 58 total yards. There’s nothing phony or misleading about an elite defense doing exactly what it should against a bad offense, and that’s what we saw in Week 9 for Cleveland. Of course they’ll face a drastically better operation this Sunday.
The biggest x-factor in this game is Deshaun Watson. At this point, especially at home, we should expect that the Ravens will play great football. What we want to observe from the Browns is that their offense is starting to come together, and we saw a semblance of that last weekend. Watson was able to comfortably settle in and manage last week’s game with ease. He played mistake-free football and his arm looked healthy. What’s more, Watson didn’t play in the Ravens’ 28-3 win at Cleveland earlier this season in Week 4. Despite Baltimore’s recent dominance, two elite defenses and two-star QBs at war in a huge divisional game tells us this line should be shorter than it is. Think about it– how are the Browns, a big enemy rival, getting the same line as Seattle last week? That shouldn’t be.
Andrew Ortenberg: Washington Commanders +6.5 over Seattle Seahawks (-110)
We’ve got an interesting NFC matchup in Week 10 as the Washington Commanders travel to take on the Seattle Seahawks. I’m playing Washington on the spread, but this is more of a fade of Seattle than it is an endorsement of the Commanders. With what we’ve seen from the Seahawks lately, I don’t think they should be favorites of nearly a touchdown against just about anybody. Last week they got demolished by the Ravens, and that pitiful performance wasn’t exactly an outlier. In the previous two weeks they had eked out ugly wins, but only because the opposing quarterbacks in those games were Josh Dobbs and PJ Walker. And it took a last-second comeback just for them to squeak past Walker and the Browns at home. The week before that, the Seahawks had scored only 13 points in a loss to the Bengals.
Last season Geno Smith’s touchdown-to-interception ratio was about 3:1, and so far this year it’s 9:7. Washington certainly didn’t look like they’re packing it in after the trade deadline, as they’re coming off a road win over New England in which Sam Howell once again impressed. His style of play is unconventional, but it’s hard to deny that Howell has a certain X-factor at this point. Outside of a loss to Buffalo in Week 3, the Commanders have been in every game they’ve played. They’ve taken Philly down to the wire twice and even took them to overtime on the road, so I don’t see why they won’t be able to keep it within one score against a middling Seahawks team. Howell has already shown he isn’t rattled by a tough environment, as 3 of his best games have come at New England, Philly and Denver.
John Martin: Denver Broncos +7.5 over Buffalo Bills (-110)
The power ratings just can’t quit the Buffalo Bills — but I can. I faded them last week against the Bengals and I’m doing so again this week. Josh Allen is clearly bothered by the shoulder. Only one quarterback in the NFL has been worse at 15+ yard pass attempts downfield in the last month: Zach Wilson. Allen does get an extra day of rest here with it being Monday Night Football, but I’m not sure it matters. It is certainly a big jump going from trying to keep pace with the Bengals offense on the road to facing the Broncos at home, but I don’t know how you get to a point where you’re comfortable laying over a touchdown with them.
The Broncos have won their last two (including a win over the Chiefs) and are coming off a bye. I don’t think they’re a playoff contender all of a sudden, but they’re a far cry from being one of the worst teams in the NFL (which is what they looked like the first month of the year). The Bills’ injuries on defense continue to loom large, as well. I think the Bills can find moderate success offensively through the air but there are just too many issues with this team right now to back them against the spread. I’ll take a Broncos team that seems to be figuring things out a bit.