Fantasy Football

2018 NFL Week 3 Betting Pick-Six: Back In The Saddle Again


Well, one article down, and I have to say, it is definitely nice to be back! Of course, my return to the scene would have been even sweeter had I hit on more than 7-out-of-12 total picks. However, that outcome is not too shabby for a first attempt, so I am satisfied, overall!

But, enough about the past! It is a new week with a new slate of games, so let’s see if I can build upon that 7/12 ratio for Week 3! I mean, if the Cleveland Browns can finally get their first win since 2016, I should be good.

It’s time to get back in the saddle again! Let’s go!

2018 NFL Week 3 Betting Pick-Six

Against the Spread

Rams (-7) vs. Chargers

I am very excited to see how this season’s “Battle for Los Angeles” pans out when the Rams and Chargers face off in the afternoon slate. The Rams Defense has been absolutely smothering through the first two weeks, allowing a league-low 6.5 points per game (thanks to their Week 2 34-0 shutout against Arizona).  Their opponents have also been very underwhelming offensively, netting only 532 total yards against the Rams Defense.

The Chargers offense, on the other hand, has not had many problems moving the ball down the field, or getting in the end zone, so far this season. Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler have amassed 456 total yards combined, good for 85% of the total yards put up against the Rams Defense! This will definitely be a much tougher match-up for the Rams, and I am confident the Chargers will keep the Rams from covering the spread!

Pick: Chargers

Chiefs (-6.5) vs. 49ers

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I am in complete awe at the videogame-like numbers that Patrick Mahomes has put up so far this season! The sheer fact that he has been an overall success is not necessarily a huge surprise. Solid quarterback play is what Andy Reid’s teams always bring to the table. But, there is something special brewing in K.C., and Mahomes has a great supporting cast around him to continue to flourish!

On the flip-side, Jimmy Garoppolo, has not yet found that late-season magic he exhibited in going 5-0 to finish out 2017. After a terrible game in Week 1, Jimmy G. was able to be a more-serviceable player in both fantasy, and real life, football last week against Detroit.

The bigger story in San Fran right now, though, is Matt Breida’s league-leading 184 rushing yards and 8.4 yards per carry through two weeks. Kansas City’s Defense has given up an average of 4.5 yards per rushing attempt so far this season, ranking them at 23rd in the NFL. I expect another solid performance from Breida, but I still see the Chiefs covering the spread, and moving to 3-0 on the season.

Pick: Chiefs


Falcons vs. Saints (O/U 53.5)

Speaking of high-power offenses, this week’s NFC South Divisional clash between the Saints and Falcons features two of the league’s premier QB/WR duos in Drew Brees/Michael Thomas and Matt Ryan/Julio Jones. Typically, the running games of both teams are on-point too, but with Devonta Freeman out for the second-straight week, the backfield edge clearly goes to New Orleans with Alvin Kamara.

The Saints desperately need a win this week, as they already have one loss to a division opponent this season. Going 0-2 in both the division and league can be tough to overcome. However, losing this week will push Atlanta to 2-0 in the division, making the road to the Division Title that much tougher on the Saints. All things considered, this game tends to be a shootout with plenty of points on the scoreboard.

The Bet Predictor tool over at agrees with me with this game being a shootout.

Pick: Over

Panthers vs. Bengals (O/U 44.5)

Let’s stick with the NFC South, and visit the Panthers/Bengals game. The Panthers are coming off a road division loss to the Falcons, but have been pretty solid overall throughout the first two weeks of the season. They won a low-scoring affair at home against Dallas, but the offense came out firing on all cylinders last week. I like Cam and company to keep the points coming again this week.

The Bengals have put up back-to-back 34-point weeks and sit atop the AFC North at 2-0. Andy Dalton and A. J. Green connected for three touchdowns last week, and Dalton threw a fourth touchdown to Tyler Boyd. I don’t know if I see another 34-pointer by the Bengals, but with Joe Mixon ruled out, Dalton will have plenty of work on his shoulders.

Pick: Over


Cardinals vs. Bears (-5) & O/U 38.5

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This is a tale of two polar opposites, in my opinion. The Cardinals have yet to find any form of offensive identity yet this season. Sam Bradford is not living up to the expectations of his contract (243 yards, zero touchdowns, two interceptions, 55.6 QBR), and David Johnson (118 total yards, one rush touchdown) has been nearly invisible, as well. Needless to say, this is not a team that inspires confidence from a fan standpoint, or a fantasy one.

The Bears have been a very complete unit through their first two games, and could easily be 2-0 instead of 1-1. Khalil Mack has been a one-man wrecking crew, netting eight total tackles (six solo, two assisted), two sacks, two forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, one pass defense, and one interception…that he returned for a touchdown! I still have no idea what Oakland was thinking when they let this guy go!

The Bears will dominate both sides of the ball in this one, and will literally just run out the clock with Jordan Howard/Tarik Cohen (assuming he plays). I would not at all be surprised to see Arizona get shutout for the second-straight week! Bears win by double-digits, but keep it low-scoring, so go with the Under!

Pick: Bears and the Under

Buccaneers vs. Steelers (-1.5) & O/U 53.5

When most people saw this game come up as the Monday Night Football match-up for Week 3 earlier this year, I would guess it was a no-brainer it would be a near cake-walk for the Black and Gold. But, not so much as we actually enter Week 3.

Ryan Fitzpatrick (819 yards, eight PaTD, one rush touchdowns, one interception, 96.1 QBR) and his bulky beard have been nothing short of spectacular through the first two weeks of the season. He also has this team primed to make a strong push for the playoffs…assuming he retains the role after this week. Jameis Winston is scheduled to return from his suspension after this week, but it remains to be seen if he will immediately retake his role as the starter.

Pittsburgh has been pretty Pittsburgh-like so far this season. Big Ben struggled mightily against an improved Cleveland team in their Week 1 tie, but he rounded back to his “Home-form” in last week’s loss to the Chiefs. But, now the Steelers head back on the road, where Ben’s woes are well-documented. And, putting them against the out-of-control offensive juggernaut of The Beard, Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson, in prime time, doesn’t sound like a “winning formula” to me. I like Tampa Bay to win this game outright, and I am taking the Over!

Pick: Tampa Bay and the Over


Stay tuned each week for my Weekly Betting Pick-Six articles right here on Fantasy Six Pack, and be sure to send me comments/questions on Twitter to @AppleGarthAlgar. Good luck this week!

Check out the rest of our 2018 Fantasy Football content from our great team of writers.

About A.J. Applegarth

A.J. has been in the fantasy sports game for so long, that the first fantasy team he ever managed used football box scores from newspapers to calculate points. Since those days, A.J. has taken home numerous fantasy football and baseball championship titles. He has also taken his talents to a few fantasy basketball leagues and countless DFS games in more recent years. A.J. would openly admit that “luck” has been a factor in his two-plus decade-long success in fantasy sports, but he will also be the first one to tell you, “You can’t teach luck!” Catch A.J.’s witty banter and "Beer of the Week" picks on The Fantasy Six Pack Hour Podcast, and follow him on the Twitter-space @AppleGarthAlgar.

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