NFL Week 8 picks: Saints will cover, and more best bets against the spread from Las Vegas SuperContest expert

R.J. White shares his five picks for the Westgate SuperContest after hitting on more than 57 percent of his plays in the competition over the last six years.
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We got back on track in Week 7, going 4-1 in both contests and 10-1 on SportsLine overall. The only miss was the Ravens, which of course looks awful in retrospect. Throw any other of my potential contests picks on the card instead of the Ravens and we're looking at a much-needed 5-0 week. Hopefully we'll get a pair of them in Week 8, as I'm going to use the same teams on both cards even though there are differences in the lines that make me actually prefer one or two others in non-contest scenarios (i.e., if you're just betting on the games this weekend). I'll explain below.

I've been SportsLine's No. 1 NFL expert over the last four years, going 354-292-22 against the spread in particular during that stretch. I've also delivered a 57.1 percent hit rate on my SuperContest picks over the last six seasons, which is exactly what you're getting below. And that run includes two finishes in the money, including finishing 18th out of 2,748 entries back in 2017.

If you're a SportsLine subscriber, you can get all my picks, which in a typical NFL week number in the double digits, at the same time as I make them by downloading the app and signing up for alerts on my expert page. That's crucial, as you might not have access to the same lines from the Las Vegas contests, which don't move after they're posted mid-week. This week, there's a 'dog that's getting too many points in the SuperContest, and the market seems to agree: the New Orleans Saints +5.5 vs. the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

I understand that the Bucs are going to be No. 1 on most people's power ratings, especially those who weight win-loss record heavily now that the last undefeated team has suffered a loss. And I don't disagree -- I actually I have them tied at the top with the Bills at seven points better than an average team, with those two 1.5 points better than the next highest team in my ratings. However, the Saints get two points for home-field advantage, so in order for a line of Bucs -5 to make sense, the Saints have to be an average team.

Do you think they're average? If you look solely at the success of the passing game over the first seven weeks of the season, maybe you do. New Orleans had no more than 151 net passing yards in any of its first three games, and after seeing improvement before the bye, the Saints could only muster 210 net passing yards against Seattle last week. But that game was played in adverse weather against a very limited offense, so Sean Payton likely felt no need to open up the playbook and attack downfield. Won't that change against the most dangerous passing offense in the game and a defense that can usually more or less shut down the opposing offense's run game?

When I look at the Saints, I see a team that was banged up early in the year but got healthy during the bye, activating three players from IR on gameday last week. The offense line has returned to being a strength, and the defense is mostly healthy and ready to match up against a Bucs defense that couldn't do a ton offensively in any of their three meetings last year. Tampa Bay did score 30 in the playoff game, but a large part of that was due to turnovers. Yes, the Saints have notable turnover machine Jameis Winston at quarterback now, but he's thrown just three picks in six games so far. Trust Sean Payton and the Saints to keep this one close.

Get the rest of my SuperContest picks and my Circa Million picks below.

So which teams should you back in Week 8? And which big underdog keeps it close?... Join SportsLine right now to see who you should back in Week 8, all from the expert who keeps crushing the world's most prestigious handicapping tournament!


R.J. WhiteSuper Stat Geek

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