Atlanta Falcons (5-6) at Washington Commanders (6-5)
A week ago on the early line, the Commanders were favored by three points at home over the Falcons, but this line has since shifted to four, a significant shift, as about 1 in 6 games are decided by exactly a field goal. Normally significant line movements like that tend to be an overreaction to a single week of play and I think that’s the case here, as my calculated line is still at Washington -3. When a home team is favored by exactly a field goal, that usually means they are slightly, but not significantly better than their opponents and I think that’s the case here, whereas a four point line would only be justified if the Commanders were significantly better.
The Falcons are a game behind the Commanders in the standings, but they actually have a slight edge in schedule adjusted efficiency, ranking 11th, while the Commanders rank 17th. My roster rankings have the Commanders as the better team, as the Falcons have largely overachieved their talent level this season, while the Commanders are significantly healthier now than they were earlier in the year and have played better since turning to Taylor Heinicke under center, but, either way, these two teams are closer together than this line suggests. There isn’t quite enough here for the Falcons to be worth betting, but the most likely outcome of this game is the Commanders winning by a field goal, so the Falcons at +4 should be the right side for pick ‘em purposes.
Washington Commanders 27 Atlanta Falcons 24
Pick against the spread: Atlanta +4