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Hello and happy Wednesday, folks. John Breech is out shopping for a life-sized Bengal cat costume for Halloween (or at least that's what I imagine him doing), so you've got me, Cody Benjamin, to deliver all the latest from around the NFL.

This is the Pick Six Newsletter. Now let's get to it. (And please, do yourself a favor and make sure you're signed up to receive this newsletter every day! You don't want to miss our daily offerings of everything you need to know around the NFL.)

We've got Week 5 predictions, betting notes, new QB rankings and much more:

  1. Today's show: Week 5 betting trends, preview, predictions

Kenny Pickett USATSI

Tyler Sullivan and John Breech joined Will Brinson on Wednesday's "Pick Six NFL Podcast" to preview some of their best bets for the Week 5 slate. Some highlights:

  • The guys are all of the mind that Teddy Bridgewater isn't necessarily a big step down from Tua Tagovailoa at quarterback in Miami, with Breech suggesting the -2.5 line barely favoring the Dolphins over the Jets is "a huge overcorrection." Sully even thinks Bridgewater was throwing downfield better than Tagovailoa off the bench in Week 4, which is why he likes the Fins.
  • Everyone is intrigued by the Steelers' QB change, but Breech thinks Pittsburgh is "throwing Kenny Pickett to the lions" by giving him his first start against the Bills, who are favored by two touchdowns in Week 5.
  • Breech is also high on the Eagles (-5) against the Cardinals, noting that Arizona has lost seven straight at home and surrendered at least 30 points four times during that span: "It just feels like as long as the Eagles aren't turning the ball over five times, they might be able to run away with this."

Catch the entire episode (and subscribe for all kinds of daily NFL talk) right here.

2. Prisco's Picks: Bengals edge Ravens, Rams rebound vs. Cowboys

Pete Prisco continues to boast a winning record with his best bets for the 2022 season. Now, he's back with predictions for every single Week 5 matchup. Here's a sampling:

  • Rams 27, Cowboys 21: Dallas has won all three games with Cooper Rush at quarterback, but that ends here. I think the Rams will find a way to limit Rush and the offense as Matthew Stafford finally gets it going on the other side.
  • Bengals 36, Ravens 33: The Bengals have turned their season around with two straight victories, mostly because the offense has started to play better. Look for Joe Burrow to win a shootout here with Lamar Jackson. First one to 35 wins.
  • Chiefs 33, Raiders 23: The Chiefs have the offense back to being top level, which is not a good thing for the Raiders defense. Look for Patrick Mahomes to have a big night.

3. QB Power Rankings: Geno Smith surges into top 20

CBS Sports illustration (Keytron Jordan)

Every week during the season, we rank all 32 QBs from first to worst. You'll wanna check out our full rundown to see the latest top 10 (and beyond), but here are some of the biggest movers entering Week 5, including Russell Wilson's Seattle successor who just so happens to be averaging more yards per attempt than every QB except Eagles star Jalen Hurts:

8. Eagles' Jalen Hurts (+2)
14. Titans' Ryan Tannehill (+2)
15. 49ers' Jimmy Garoppolo (+2)
17. Lions' Jared Goff (+3)
20. Seahawks' Geno Smith (+2)

4. Sorting contenders and pretenders: Cowboys for real?

Just about a quarter of the way through the 2022 NFL season, Jordan Dajani has taken stock of the potential contenders and identified which teams are for real, and which ones are frauds. While the Eagles are dominating headlines atop the NFC East, he made sure to include "America's Team" as one of the NFC's true players:

Through the first few weeks, it's the Cowboys defense that has stood out to me. The Cowboys have allowed just 15.5 points per game, which ranks third in the NFL, and own the second-highest pressure rate this season. DeMarcus Lawrence and the defensive line have been dominant, Micah Parsons looks like a Defensive Player of the Year favorite and Donovan Wilson is a rising star.

Good teams win and great teams cover. The Cowboys have done both, as they have won five straight road games, and covered the spread in each one. They are an NFL-best 16-5 against the spread over the last two seasons -- and if you're not a gambling person, that basically just means that Dallas has exceeded expectations. I don't think the Cowboys are destined to hoist the Lombardi Trophy this year, but in the weak NFC, they are going to have a shot to make a run.

5. Star Power Index: Saquon Barkley powering the Giants

Saquon Barkley USATSI

Speaking of the NFC East, Garrett Podell's Star Power Index identifies which players have the most influence in the game today. And few players have been as impactful in 2022, he argues, than the running back for the New York Giants:

The Giants are 3-1 this season for the first time since 2011, the last time they won the Super Bowl, with quarterback Eli Manning. The revival of Saquon Barkley as an NFL superstar is one of the biggest reasons for the team's hot start under first-year head coach Brian Daboll. Last year was a slog as Barkley finished with 856 scrimmage yards, his first season under 1,000 when playing at least 10 games, as he shook off the rust from the ACL injury. This season, he's already over halfway to his 2021 total with his NFL-best 570 scrimmage yards through the first four weeks. ... Making the extraordinary seem like just another day at the office, Barkley continues to remind us that he is arguably the NFL's most dangerous player with the ball in his hands. 

6. Injury roundup: Giants QB options, Russell Wilson, more

Catch up on the latest regarding some key injuries: