NFL Tipsheet: Mini previews and recommended bets for Week 5 fixtures

None shall pass: Von Miller's No-Fly-Zone keeps rivals grounded
None shall pass: Von Miller's No-Fly-Zone keeps rivals grounded

Romilly Evans takes you through his game-by-game analysis of all Sunday's encounters, with a bet for each...

"It appears no-one’s missing Peyton Manning – or more pertinently Brock Osweiler – as Denver’s dominating defense has led them to 4-0."

Recommended Bet

Back Under 27.5 Denver Total Points @ 1.9110/11 or better

Chicago at Indianapolis
Sunday, 18:00

Both these sides stand at a woeful 1-3, but there is some light at the end of their respective tunnels. Indy's O-line, as ever, just need to protect Andrew Luck better. He's been hurried and harried over 20% of the time by opposing defenses this season, and sacked an alarming 15 times. That said, he's thrown for 1,147 yards and is getting fitter by the day. Chicago, on the other hand - despite a recent win under stand-in QB Brian Hoyer - will badly miss Jay Cutler's elite flair as a means of keeping pace with Luck. The Colts should arrest their worst start since 2011.

Recommended Bet
Back Indianapolis to win on the Moneyline @ 1.51/2 or better


Houston at Minnesota
Sunday, 18:00

Minny are the story of the year so far, overcoming the twin-threat loss of Teddy Bridgewater and Adrian Peterson, with a redoubtable D and the belated emergence of Sam Bradford under center. Houston have their own challenges, notably the loss of JJ Watt who may yet be back before the campaign's out, to prove they're not a one-man squad. In a match-up where both sides have already proved more than the sum of their parts, expect the Texans to comfortably stay within a generous head-start.

Recommended Bet
Back Houston (+5.5pts) to win @ 2.26/5 or better


New England at Cleveland
Sunday, 18:00

The absence of Tom Brady finally caught up with the Patriots against Buffalo last week, and they look there for the taking after that shutout uncovered an Achilles Heel. Trouble is Brady's now back to lead his Bunch. Plus they're facing the Browns, who are one-undering the Pats' B-Quarterback by fielding an entire B-Team. Tricky to call, then, with this rag-tag band of misfits facing up to TB's imponderable return. But perhaps the skilful Joe Haden can outstrip the more flashy Julian Edelman in the receiving stakes and snaffle an early touchdown.

Recommended Bet
Back J.Haden score First / Anytime Touchdown @ 20.019/1 or better


New York Jets at Pittsburgh
Sunday, 18:00

The Steelers bandwagon go back on the rails earlier in the week, and there's every reason to expect it to roll over the Jets, even though the handicap isn't pretty. Long story short, Le'Veon Bell is back. And the Pittsburgh running man may be better than ever. Allied to Big Ben and a crack receiving crew, Ryan Fitzpatrick will struggle to keep pace. The bench-warmer formerly known as Geno Smith could soon come in from the cold.

Recommended Bet
Back Pittsburgh (-7pts) to win @ 1.9310/11 or better


Philadelphia at Detroit
Sunday, 18:00

Philly are another of the early finds of this young term, but I don't expect their reign of terror to last too long, as rival defenses catch up on the new moves of rookies Carson Wentz and Doug Pederson. Detroit have lost their last three but each was decided by seven points or fewer. Matt Stafford blew it with two TDs against Chicago, but can eliminate the errors at home. Although I've said that before.

Recommended Bet
Back Detroit (+2.5pts) to win @ 2.26/5 or better


Tennessee at Miami
Sunday, 18:00

Two erratic but talented teams square up in a tussle that can come down to two things: Miami's new homefield, and Ryan Tannehill. Hard Rock Stadium may not prove an impregnable fortress but Fins fans will be up for this must-win game against another Heisman-bust in Marcus Mariota. DeMarco Murray, back to something approaching his peak Dallas form, may prove more of a threat, but I expect Miami to contain him and run out very comfortable winners. My proverbial lock of the week.

Recommended Bet
Back Miami to win by Over 12pts @ 5.04/1 or better


Washington at Baltimore
Sunday, 18:00

Kirk Cousins represents safe harbour in a maelstrom of previous misfits, and Washington are picking up some mo in the competitive NFC East. Although Baltimore have a better record to date, I still think they're one to take on, at least until Joe Flacco recovers to his best. And certainly while the Ravens D seem so surprisingly susceptible to the passing game (Oakland made hay last Sunday at the most inopportune times). The Skins sport the balances side and can hang with their hosts' scoring on the road.

Recommended Bet
Back Over 46.5 Total Points @ 2.021/1 or better


Atlanta at Denver
Sunday, 21:05

It appears no-one's missing Peyton Manning - or more pertinently Brock Osweiler - this term, as Denver's devastating defense has led them to 4-0. However, the Broncos are bizarrely also operating offense. Trevor Siemian ain't no Manning, though, even if he is presently at the helm of the fourth-best passing team in the league, and even Gary Kubiak's astute play-calling can't keep these numbers up. Atlanta are also over-achieving. Yet, having tipped them for their division the three previous years, this is not a time to pretend I understand the fluctuating value of Matty Ice. Go under Broncos points, as Kubiak returns to recognising the run and clock-control as the better part of valour.

Recommended Bet
Back Under 27.5 Total Denver Points @ 1.9110/11 or better


Buffalo at Los Angeles
Sunday, 21:25

Buffalo landed the nap last week, and can pick up where they left off in New England to land three-in-a-row. Los Angeles have also looked mightily impressive in registering their own troika of triumphs. Yet all that praise can be lavished on their doughty defense. Todd Gurley and Tavon Austin are yet to return to form on offense. The Bills can stifle them again and halt the Rams' charge.

Recommended Bet
Back Buffalo to win on the Moneyline @ 2.255/4 or better


Cincinnati at Dallas
Sunday, 21:25

Dak Prescott is making all the right moves in Dallas to give his top brass a headache when Tony Romo returns. However, the young QB, coupled to a rookie class of other promising 'Boys, faces an acid test as to how far they have come when they host Cincy. The Bengals are only 2-2, and while I'm still not sure Andy Dalton is a game-changing QB, you can saddle him up and ride his flashy wideouts to victory at the AT&T.

Recommended Bet
Back Cincinnati to win on the Moneyline @ 1.9110/11 or better


San Diego at Oakland
Sunday, 21:25

San Diego's consistent run of bad fortune is making me begin to doubt whether they're just being unlucky. Perhaps something murkier lurks beneath their closing credentials? But there's still enough on show on both sides of the ball for me to chance them against an Oakland outfit which, by contrast, is making the most of its breaks. The Ravens' secondary was caught in a rare flap last Sunday, and I still think the Raiders are a few aces short of a play-off deck. There'll be few home comforts on offer here in this key AFC West head-to-head.

Recommended Bet
Back San Diego to win Half-time / Full-time @ 4.84/1 or better

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