In week 4 it was the Rams and the Colts. This week the Chiefs, Bears and Chargers took teams down including myself. My pick of the Chiefs went up in flames on Sunday night as the Colts defense, despite missing star Darius Leonard and both starting safeties, held Patrick Mahomes in check.  Rewarded were those who went with the Patriots a week earlier than I had planned for and those who still had the Eagles to use.  Luckily the main pool I’m in is a 3 strike you’re out one, so still in it despite the loss.  On to week 6.

As I wrote last week, I was saving the Patriots for this week and now with the rash of injuries to the Giants offense, it solidifies the pick.  It goes against the Thursday night tenet, but the other choices this week are poor. The Pats are 17 point favorites at home which gives them a historic 83% chance of winning.  Their defense is one of the best in the league and will be no match for the undermanned Giants who will be without Barkley, Gallman, Shepard, and Engram.  The only thing to watch out for is the weather.  A Nor’easter is brewing and rain and wind are in the forecast.  This could add a wrinkle, but old man Brady gets the advantage here due to experience.

Who are the other options this week if you’ve already used the Patriots?  There are two home favorites of 7 points this week.  The Ravens are -11 over the Bengals and the Chargers have moved up to 7 point favorites after opening at 5 ½ due to the injury to Pittsburgh’s Mason Rudolph .  The Ravens have been used by a lot of people already but if they are available to you they are a solid pick against the Bengals.  The Bengals lost to the Cardinals at home last week and at 0-5, have not been able to put it together.  Their offensive line continues to struggle and the loss of John Ross coupled with the continued absence of AJ Green has made it even more difficult for Andy Dalton .

The Chargers laid an egg last week against the then winless Broncos at home.  Despite 32 completions, almost half of which were to Austin Ekeler , Philip Rivers only threw for 211 yards.  Keenan Allen was held to 12 yards on 4 receptions.  Their running game was nonexistent despite the return of Melvin Gordon .  Pittsburgh has lost Jaylen Samuels for a month due to an MCL sprain and will be starting their 3rd QB in Devlin Hodges.  The Steelers did take the Ravens to OT, but decided to give the Ravens the ball to start OT as their confidence in the offense was minimal.  This is a tough game to pick but if you don’t have the option of the Ravens or Patriots, it is one to consider.

The Cowboys are 7 point road favorites over the Jets.  The Jets get Sam Darnold back but their problems run deep.  Their offensive line gave up 10 sacks to an Eagles defense who had only 3 in the first 4 weeks.  Darnold is obviously a major upgrade and this should stabilize and improve the offense and even give them a moral boost but this won’t be enough against the Cowboys.  The Jets have a good defense and if CJ Mosley returns, they could hold Ezekiel Elliott in check and force the Cowboys to throw the ball.  In the end, the Cowboys should prevail in this one.

The pick: PATRIOTS  I saved them for this week due to the lack of solid choices otherwise. The Ravens and Cowboys would be my pivots if you’ve already taken the Patriots.  There are a small percentage of people taking the Redskins by going the anti-Dolphins route.  That’s not a chance I’m taking with the coaching change and poor play by Washington.