Upset Picks for NFL Week 6, 2020
Week six feels like a pretty good time to bet on some underdogs. Last week’s batch almost paid off in a big way. The Browns (+125) delivered, Minnesota (+270) led with seconds remaining – and arguably got burned by a bad call – and the Eagles were in it late in Pittsburgh.
There could be much more value to be had this week, of course.
The amount of games being called close to the chest is staggering. Ten games have a point spread of 3.5 or smaller, while some of the games with bigger spreads are at least interesting.
But you’re not here to see what has my interest piqued. You’re here for underdog winners. That doesn’t mean you need to bet on all of my favorite NFL upset picks for week 6, but I can safely say these are some of my favorite value plays on the week.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+116)
Aaron Rodgers vs. Tom Brady is the stuff legends are made of. It’s an epic battle, and one we may not see much more of.
It’s also taken place just twice before. Rodgers beat Brady’s Patriots back in 2014 (26-21), and in Mike McCarthy’s final season Brady and the Pats pulled away for a 31-17 win.
Brady can still orchestrate a quality offense, and it’s arguable he’s in a pretty good spot at home against the Packers. Green Bay’s offense will be a problem, but there’s a couple of things bettors can hang their hat on here.
First, Tampa Bay offers pretty nice value as a home dog. They have two losses on the year and haven’t been perfect, but they’ve yet to lose at home, and they have the 11th best scoring offense in football.
Secondly, the Packers don’t have an elite defense. They have a great cover man in Jaire Alexander and a solid pass rush, but the Bucs can run the ball and execute in the red zone in this matchup.
Lastly, the Packers were abysmal out of their bye last week, getting crushed in a big road matchup against the 49ers. If that’s a problem again, Tampa Bay could be an easier pick than first thought.
Overall, the Bucs offer nice value at home, and it’s unlikely the Packers will pass every tough test they run into. This is a viable spot to bet against them.
Chicago Bears (+120)
Everyone wants to keep clowning the Bears, but this team just keeps getting wins. They remind me somewhat of Green Bay of a year ago, as the Packers weren’t particularly dominant, but they just got the job done and grinded out wins.
Chicago has proven they can win all types of games and in different ways. They’ve rallied from behind three times, they’ve overcome two huge holes, they’ve won tight games, and they’ve even secured wins in the final moments.
I don’t expect a dominant performance, but the Bears get a pretty beatable Panthers team. Chicago has the superior defense in this matchup, and their pass defense is what makes them so dangerous here (third in yards per attempt allowed).
Carolina’s system thrives on their short-area passing game, as well as deep shots. The Bears have the stingy secondary to contain the Panthers’ explosive wide receivers, while they also aren’t terrible (16th) against the run.
Teddy Bridgewater will be tasked with overcoming this tough matchup, but I think he fails as the Panthers see their three-game winning streak snapped.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+165)
This is a tough one, but the Jaguars are a value play at home against a bad Detroit Lions team.
There are two narratives to buy into here; Jacksonville is tanking so they can draft Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 NFL Draft, or the Lions are one more loss from head coach Matt Patricia being handed a well-deserved pink slip.
Jacksonville isn’t great, but they’re at home, and Gardner Minshew II has flashed quality play over the past year and a half. Minshew has a pretty good matchup in front of him, too, seeing as the Lions have a middling secondary, as well as the 30th ranked pass rush in football.
Minshew should have time to go to work here, and I also think this is a spot where James Robinson could feast (Detroit is dead last against the run).
Detroit can be pesky, and they’ll keep it close, but the Jags offer the value.
Cleveland Browns (+175)
The Browns seem to be pretty good. They’re 4-1 for the first time since 1994, and they own the league’s number one ground game.
The #Browns backfield continued to exceed expectation in their Week 4 win vs the Cowboys, despite Nick Chubb's injury.— Next Gen Stats (@NextGenStats) October 4, 2020
The Browns have 3 RBs that rank in the top 15 of rushing yards over expectation this season:
1. Kareem Hunt: +111
3. Nick Chubb: +102
11. D'Ernest Johnson: +42 pic.twitter.com/YWm4C3eL3W
That takes a mild hit with the absence of Nick Chubb, but not really. That unit looked plenty good against a very good Colts defense last week, and a fairly dynamic passing attack has proven it isn’t just about the rush offense.
Cleveland is legit, and they can also do some damage defensively. All things considered, they feel like a fun underdog play for the second week in a row. Add in that Ben Roethlisberger really isn’t challenging defenses deep yet, and I think the Steelers are in for a bit of a letdown this week.
After all, the Browns need to do more than just get off to a hot start to make us all (and even themselves) believers. Going into Pittsburgh to earn a tie for first place in the AFC North would accomplish that.
This doesn’t really feel like the week to go crazy high and roll with the likes of the Eagles or Jets.
Rather, just go with some value you feel really good about, and bet on the favorites that stand out.
My favorite NFL upset picks for week six can be seen above. Hopefully a couple of them (ideally all of them) find you well. For more in-depth breakdowns of all of the week six NFL games and all the other sports, we cover, hit up our picks section.