The NFL Week 6 betting board may be one of the best slates of games yet this season, featuring several divisional matchups and a rematch of last year’s epic AFC divisional round game between the Bills and Chiefs. Here, we offer picks and predictions for the Week 6 slate.
We’ve already seen a shakeup at one head coaching position, and several franchises are fighting to keep their season’s hopes alive. Some teams, however, are riding high on unexpected winning streaks, and each week is a new opportunity to prove they’re not a fluke.
The marquee matchups don’t always offer bettors the most value, however, and in our NFL Week 6 predictions, see which games feature the best bets to make in a stacked slate.
San Francisco 49ers at Atlanta Falcons (+5.5)
Only one team is undefeated against the spread this season – the Atlanta Falcons. Marcus Mariota and the Falcons scored 15 unanswered in the fourth quarter in last week’s failed comeback against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
This point spread here has hovered in the 49ers -5 to -6 range during early wagering.
Falcons fans are rightfully chiding the officiating for their comeback attempt falling short in Tampa. Regardless of the outcome, however, Atlanta is playing tough football and has the potential to upset a visiting San Francisco 49ers team this week.
Both the Panthers and Falcons entered the season with coaches on the hot seat, but it was Carolina’s Matt Rhule who got the boot first after an embarrassing loss to San Francisco. Falcons head coach Arthur Smith can buy himself more time with a home win over that same 49ers squad.
Atlanta doesn’t boast a strong roster, but it has had a tendency to play up – and down – to its opponents. All three of the Falcons’ losses – to Tampa Bay, the Los Angeles Rams, and New Orleans Saints – were by one possession. Despite a lack of high-end talent, the Falcons offense is 10th in points per game and eighth in rushing yards per play.
San Francisco may be without all-pro defensive end Nick Bosa, who sustained a groin injury in last week’s game.
Despite weaknesses in the Falcons roster, there’s no reason they shouldn’t cover 5.5 at home to an overrated 49ers team. In a game that should be closer to a field-goal spread, Atlanta is one of the best bets of NFL Week 6.
Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (+3 -115)
The overall expectation for Seattle in the post-Russell Wilson era was bleak. Although just 2-3 following a close loss to New Orleans, they’ve seemingly bucked that narrative. Even more surprisingly, quarterback Geno Smith has a league-best 113.2 QBR, and the Seahawks are in the top 10 for yards and points per game.
While the spread has dipped to +2.5 (-105) on several oddsboards around the sports betting market, +3 (-115) is available at BetMGM as of Wednesday. Shop around for the full field goal, even if you have to lay additional juice.
Seattle returns home for an NFC West bout with the 2-3 Cardinals. With Los Angeles and San Francisco struggling through the first five weeks, the division appears more open than expected. The 12th man should be loud in Seattle.
Arizona has had an up-and-down season this year. They nearly handed the Philadelphia Eagles their first loss last week, and their two wins have been an overtime stunner over Las Vegas and a 26-16 victory over the hapless Panthers.
Arizona’s offense has been middle of the pack this season by most metrics, although it does get a favorable matchup against a Seattle team that has allowed the second-most points per game.
Both the Cardinals and Seahawks have had success moving the ball, and that should continue, as neither franchise has a solid defense. This may be a matchup where the team who gets the ball last wins, but the edge goes to the Seattle Seahawks at home.
One of the best bets of NFL Week 6: the Seahawks getting three.
Carolina Panthers at Los Angeles Rams (Under 40.5)
The Los Angeles Rams’ quest to repeat as Super Bowl champions has gotten off to a poor start. The offense has failed to replicate their success of last season, and through five weeks, the Rams lead the league in sacks allowed and are in the bottom 10 in points and yards per game.
Los Angeles looks to get back to .500 this week with a favorable home matchup against the Carolina Panthers. The struggling Rams are double-digit favorites over Carolina despite their paltry 1-4 record against the spread. The Under is the safer pick and one of our best bets of NFL Week 6.
Most of the Rams’ struggles this season can be attributed to poor offensive line play. Stafford’s league-leading 21 sacks have taken a toll on the 34-year old, and he’s posting a modest stat line through five weeks with just five touchdowns and 10 total turnovers.
Although Los Angeles has had their troubles this season, things in Carolina have been even worse. Former defensive backs coach Steve Wilks takes over as interim head coach for the 1-4 Panthers. The Panthers join the Rams at the bottom of offensive rankings, posting a league-worst 271 yards per game.
P.J. Walker is expected to make the start behind center for Carolina with Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold sidelined with injuries. Although Mayfield and Darnold showed little with their reps this season, it’s hard to imagine Walker in his third career start providing any sort of upgrade for this struggling offense.
Neither of these NFC teams has succeeded on the offensive side of the ball this season. Each team is averaging fewer than 20 points a contest. The Rams and Panthers are a combined 7-3 on Under bets this season and there’s little reason to expect an offensive explosion in this matchup.
For one of the best bets of NFL Week 6, take the Under on these two struggling teams.
Also read: Public bettors on Panthers