New York Giants (4-8) at Los Angeles Chargers (7-5)
A lot has been made of the Giants’ injury situation, as they are missing starting quarterback Daniel Jones, at least one of their top wide receivers Kadarius Toney, as well as a trio of key defensive starters, safety Jabrill Peppers, cornerback Adoree Jackson, and middle linebacker Blake Martinez, but the Chargers are missing some key players as well. Top wide receiver Keenan Allen is out with COVID, while fellow wide receiver Mike Williams and top cornerback Chris Harris could join him as close contacts, although both seem likely to end up playing. They’re also without starting cornerback Asante Samuel, starting edge defender Kyler Fackrell, and their two starting offensive linemen on the right side, tackle Bryan Bulaga and guard Oday Aboushi.
Despite that, the Chargers are favored by 10 points in this game. The Chargers are a better team than they were a year ago, but, dating back to the start of last season, the Chargers have just three multi-score wins, with two of them coming last season against the eventual 1-15 Jaguars and the Chiefs’ backups in a meaningless week 17 game. The Giants might be bad enough to still lose by double digits anyway, but my calculated line has the Chargers favored by just 8.5 points, factoring in that the Chargers frequently draw road heavy crowds and don’t have much homefield advantage in Los Angeles as a result, going just 13-21 ATS at home since moving to Los Angeles.
On top of that, the Chargers are in a bad spot, with a much tougher game next week, in Kansas City, against the Chiefs. Favorites of a touchdown or more cover at just a 43.6% rate before facing a team with a winning percentage over 40% higher than their current opponent’s winning percentage, and, making matters worse for the Chargers, that game in Kansas City is on short rest on Thursday Night Football. Favorites cover at just a 41.7% rate before a Thursday game. It’s very likely the Chargers overlook a bad Giants team starting a backup quarterback, at least enough that this game will be closer than it should be. There isn’t enough here for Glennon and the Giants to be bettable, but they should be the better side for pick ‘em purposes.
Los Angeles Chargers 23 New York Giants 16
Pick against the spread: NY Giants +10