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Thread: NFL Trends and Indexes - Week 16 (Sat., Dec. 22 - Mon., Dec. 24)

  1. #16
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    By: Brandon DuBreuil



    JOSEPH ON THE WAY OUT?

    A ProFootballTalk report on Wednesday suggests that Broncos head coach Vance Joseph will be fired at the end of the season. Joseph’s record sits at 11-19 as he nears the end of his second season with Denver, though it is tough to win when your quarterbacks have been Trevor Siemian, Brock Osweiler, Paxton Lynch, and Case Keenum.

    Denver travels to Oakland on Monday night as a 3-point favorite and with a game total of 43 and we’re looking to back the Raiders. A big factor here that isn’t being talked about much is that this is quite possibly the final game for the Raiders in Oakland. They aren’t moving to Las Vegas until 2020 but they do not have a lease to play anywhere in 2019. There is a chance that the Raiders return to Oakland for one more season but that is far from a done deal. We’re thinking the Broncos could be lacking motivation by knowing their coach is on the way out and that the Raiders should be fired up for what could be their final game in Oakland and we’re backing the Raiders at plus-3.


    ENGRAM HOT WITHOUT OBJ

    Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr. missed practice yesterday and on Wednesday and looks like he’ll miss his third straight game on Sunday as the Giants visit the Colts. Tight end Evan Engram has really benefited from Beckham’s absence, posting receiving yards totals of 66, 77, and 75 over the last three games, including last week’s eight-catch performance on 12 targets in the rain against the Titans. Looking back a bit further, we see that Engram is averaging 7.9 targets in the 13 games he has played without Beckham and has turned them into 4.6 receptions for 55.2 yards.

    The Colts are a solid matchup for opposing tight ends, ranking 23rd against the position in allowing 7.9 passes per game and 74.7 receiving yards. Indianapolis’ opponents are also targeting their tight ends 24.2 percent of the time, which is the third-highest rate in the league. Follow Covers’ Twitter feed for an official announcement on OBJ but we’ll be looking to take the Over on Engram’s receiving yards total if and when he is ruled out.


    MACK ATTACK

    In sticking with the Giants-Colts matchup on Sunday, running back Marlon Mack looks like he could be in for a huge game. Mack’s stock was starting to fade but came shooting back up with his 27-139-2 rushing line against a very difficult Cowboys rush defense last week. This week, he faces a much easier task against a Giants rush defense that is giving up 152.7 total yards to opposing running backs. New York was scorched for 170 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 33 carries by Derrick Henry last week. We’re ignoring Week 14 where Washington didn’t run the ball after the Giants had jumped out to a huge lead, but three weeks ago Chicago’s backfield combined for 106 rushing yards on 24 carries and Tarik Cohen posted 12 receptions for 156 yards. Game script should also be in Mack’s favor as a 9-point home favorite and we’re taking the Over 69.5 on his rushing yards total.


    BOYD STILL NOT PRACTICING

    Bengals receiver Tyler Boyd did not practice on Thursday and still hasn’t returned to the field after suffering a sprained MCL on Sunday. He hasn’t officially been ruled out yet but seems a safe bet to miss the rest of the season. This is bad news for quarterback Jeff Driskel and the rest of the Bengals’ offense.

    Boyd has had an impressive breakout season with 76 catches for 1,028 yards and seven touchdowns. Driskel found an immediate connection with Boyd, connecting on 18 of the 24 passes he has thrown in Boyd’s direction for a completion rate of 75 percent. It hasn’t quite been the same with any other Bengals’ pass catcher as Driskel is just 62 of 106 for a 58.5 completion rate to all other targets. This week, Driskel goes on the road to face a Browns pass defense ranked sixth in passing DVOA. He faced the Browns in his first start back in Week 12 and threw for just 155 yards. Take the Under on his passing yards total of 187.5.


    JUJU LEAVES PRACTICE

    Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster suffered a groin injury on practice on Thursday and was forced to sit out the rest of the session. This is bad news for the Steelers who play a crucial game on Sunday at New Orleans. Pittsburgh currently has a half-game lead over Baltimore atop the AFC North and Sunday’s game basically becomes a must-win if Baltimore beats the Chargers on Saturday. Receiver James Washington mentioned to reporters after practice that he expects JuJu on the field on Sunday and we assume he will be as well, especially considering the nature of the game.

    Should Smith-Schuster suit up on Sunday, he’s in a great situation to continue his hot run. Since Week 11, JuJu leads the entire NFL in targets with 58 which has resulted in 7.8 catches for 102.4 receiving yards per game. He’s also one of the top road receivers in the game, posting lines of 8-130-2, 13-89-1, and 8-104-0 in his last three. Also promising is that Smith-Schuster ran 63 percent of his routes from the slot last week against New England, which, if that trend continues, should get him away from Saints’ corners Marshon Lattimore and Eli Apple. Monitor his health over the coming days but we’ll be looking to take the Over on his receiving yards total if he suits up and appears to be near 100 percent.

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    NFL INJURY UPDATE

    Giants WR Odell Beckham Jr. has been ruled OUT for Sunday's game against Colts.
    Current Odds:
    Colts: -9
    Total: 48


    WR Tyler Boyd has been ruled OUT for their matchup against Browns.
    Current Odds:
    Browns: -9.5
    Total: 44

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    NFL INJURY UPDATE

    Falcons WR Julio Jones (Hip, Ribs) will be a gametime decision for their matchup against Panthers
    Current odds:
    Falcons: -3
    Total: 44

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    Saturday's Essentials
    Tony Mejia

    Game of the Night - Baltimore at L.A. Chargers (-4, 41.5), NFLN, 8:20 ET

    The NFL has had a decent run on primetime games of late. Even last Saturday’s Browns-Broncos game at least managed to come down to the wire. Matchups like this one, where both teams still have division titles in their sights as Week 16 begins, are the dream.

    It remains to be seen how vivid this one is, but there’s certainly potential that we could see something special given the implications for both. The Ravens would make the playoffs if they started today, but their grip on a spot is tenuous given the number of teams behind them with more favorable schedules.

    The Chargers share the AFC’s top record with division-mate Kansas City, which would emerge with the No. 1 seed in the conference due to a better divisional mark if the teams remain tied. All L.A. can do is win out and hope the Seahawks give them some help on Sunday night since it’s unrealistic that the Raiders would pull an upset in Arrowhead in Week 17.

    The return of top running back Melvin Gordon tells you how seriously the Chargers are taking this one since he’ll suit up for the first time since Nov. 25. L.A. is a perfect 3-0 without him, but there’s no question he affords the offense a significant upgrade with his skill set. He’s found the end zone 10 times in 13 games and re-establishes a short passing game that was missing last week since backup Austin Ekeler, who performed impressively in Gordon’s absence, was also sidelined with a shoulder stinger against the Chiefs.

    Ekeler remains out for the Chargers, so rookies Justin Jackson and Detrez Newsome will return to backup roles. It’s incredible that L.A. finds itself in this position considering they’ve ran through the Steelers, Bengals and Chiefs despite being short-handed since elite receiver Keenan Allen has been absent with a hip injury and top defensive tackle Brandon Mebane was away due to a personal matter.

    Everybody is back to join Philip Rivers on a rollercoaster ride that has featured plenty of low points but has somehow managed to come to successful stops on nine of their last 10 trips. The resume looks impressive since L.A. has managed to overcome absolutely no homefield advantage outside of players being able to sleep in their own beds, which is why two of their three losses have come in their temporary home in Carson. L.A. lost to the Chiefs in Week 1, at the Rams in Week 3 and back on Nov. 18 in a 23-22 loss to the Broncos that may wind up being the reason the AFC playoffs go through Kansas City and not the home of the L.A. Galaxy from the MLS.

    That wrinkle makes this a slightly more manageable road trip for a Ravens teams that finds itself clear across the country on their longest journey of the season. Baltimore can count on some representation that you will probably be able to hear among the collective indifference whenever they make a big play. Lamar Jackson held up well at Arrowhead in nearly producing an upset in his only road start so far, a 27-24 loss on Dec. 9. Baltimore is going to look to keep things simple for him and control possession, so the formula that has yielded victories in four of games remains in place. Joe Flacco, now healthy, has been relegated to a backup role behind the rookie. Since the organization rewarded John Harbaugh with a one-year extension with an eye towards a long-term agreement, it’s clear everyone is on the same page with this transition.

    Jackson has ran for at least 67 yards in five straight games and is now the Ravens’ leading rusher, but lost a fumble last week against the Bucs in a 20-12 sweat of a victory. The Chargers strength on the defensive end lies up front and may be mitigated some by Jackson’s speed and a short passing game that may limit Joey Bosa’s impact as a pass-rusher.

    Weekly “Total Talk” writer Chris David offered up his thoughts on how this contrast in styles may play out.

    “The oddsmakers are expecting the nightcap between the Ravens and Chargers to be a grinder and it’s hard to disagree when you look at Baltimore’s defense, which leads the league in scoring defense (18.1 PPG) and total defense with 290.1 yards per game,” said David. “Los Angeles isn’t far behind, ranked ninth in scoring (21.3 PPG) and eighth in total yards (329.1) and does boast the fourth-best scoring offense (28.2 PPG) in the league but Baltimore’s blueprint for success under the rookie QB has been grinding the clock and keeping great attacks off the field. It did it successfully against Kansas City in Week 13. Outside of the Chiefs, the Ravens haven’t faced a formidable opponent and this is definitely a step-up in class.

    “For those of you following my weekly installments, I’m sure you’ve read about the ‘Coast to Coast’ angle that I’ve tracked. The ‘over’ is 12-6-1 in these games and it focuses on matchups where a team from the Eastern Time Zone plays in the Pacific Time Zone and vice versa. This will be the first trip for the Ravens to the West Coast and while I’m not a big fan of their ground-and-pound style, the Bolts are weak up the middle and they could exploit the L.A. defense.”

    The Chargers have allowed 21 or more points in four of five and have forced just two turnovers, so this game may produce points if the Ravens can finish drives with touchdowns instead of field-goal attempts. Temperatures will be in the high 50s with winds not a factor, so the weather we’ll be an asset to the ‘over.’

    “I believe Baltimore will have an opportunity to get four to five scores in this game, especially with the best kicker in the game,” said David in offering up his top pick. “If they can convert a couple into touchdowns, their Team Total (19 ½) has a great shot to connect on Saturday.”


    Game of the Day -- Washington at Tennessee (-10, 37.5), NFLN, 4:30 ET

    The Titans and Redskins are each in the mix of playoff hopefuls in their respective conferences, but this line doesn’t hide the fact only one is considered a threat to do so.

    Washington is working with its fourth starting quarterback of the season and finds itself at .500 thanks to the work of a defense that continues to chop wood. The Titans had some shaky moments in attempting to work around a banged-up Marcus Mariota all season but have had him at the controls in every game. He’s dealing with a foot issue entering this one but was upgraded from questionable earlier this week and should at least be able to orchestrate an offense that running back Derrick Henry has strapped to his back behind the work of the offensive line over the past few weeks.

    Mariota threw for just 88 yards in last Sunday’s 17-0 win over the Giants, the fourth time this season that he’s passed for fewer than 103 yards in a game. Tennessee has actually won two of those games, so like Washington, it is quite comfortable letting the defense decide things.

    That Henry has run for over 400 yards and six touchdowns in the team’s last two wins has just been a bonus. The defense has surrendered only nine point to the Jaguars and Giants but does come in needing to replace bodies. Corner Logan Ryan was lost for the season to a broken fibula, while linebackers Brian Orakpo (elbow) and Sharif Finch (shoulder) have been ruled out.

    Safety Kenny Vaccaro (concussion) defensive tackle Jurrell Casey (knee) and linebacker Wesley Woodyard (back) are all good to go, complicating matters for Josh Johnson, who wrestled away the ‘Skins QB gig from a turnover-prone Mark Sanchez two weeks ago and becomes an unlikely player in meaningful December football considering he wasn’t on NFL roster all season and joined Washington earlier this month. He’s 27-for-41 with two touchdown passes, one pick and 96 rushing yards over two games and comes off a road win in Jacksonville.

    He’s looked serviceable and Washington is as healthy as it has been in weeks at the skill positions, so there’s a chance he can keep the ‘Skins in this if his defense complies.

    “While you could be tempted to go ‘over’ in the Tennessee-Washington matchup because of a such low number, leaning low or staying away from the game altogether is probably the right decision,” said VI totals expert Chris David. “According to the odds, we’ve seen 12 totals close in the thirties this season and the ‘over’ has gone 7-5 in those games. In Week 15, the ‘under’ went 2-0 in those situations and that included Washington’s 16-13 win over Jacksonville.

    “Tennessee (19.1 PPG) and Washington (18.9 PPG) enter this game ranked 27th and 28th respectively in scoring offense. The Titans are clearly the better defensive team (18.1 PPG) and they’ve done a great job being a bully this season, holding teams below .500 to 10 PPG and that includes last week’s 17-0 shutout win over the Giants.”

    Mariota’s foot issues give Washington’s defense hope that it can put together a second straight sturdy effort. The unit forced a pair of turnovers last week but has ruled out LB Ryan Anderson (hamstring) and won’t have safety Montae Nicholson (legal). Corners Danny Johnson (finger) and Joshua Holsey (knee) are also out.

    Up front, guard Ty Nsheke (knee) has been ruled out, while likely replacement Tony Bergstrom is listed as questionable. Johnson will again be without tight ends Jordan Reed and Vernon Davis but has been making due without them. Washington closes at home with the Eagles next week and the Titans visit the Colts, so get used to watching these teams in meaningful games. The teams will open Week 16 and do-or-die football among cool conditions given temperatures in the mid-40s expected in Nashville. A lack of wind will aid the passing game – if there is a desire to execute through the air on either side. “Make a note that non-conference games saw the ‘under’ go 5-1 last week,” said David. “While I would lean that way, I believe the better angle is to fade Washington’s offense and play their Team Total ‘under’ (13 ½).”
    Last edited by Udog; 12-22-2018 at 09:35 AM.

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    SuperContest Picks - Week 16
    December 22, 2018
    By VI News


    The Westgate Las Vegas SuperContest is the biggest, most prestigious, challenging pro football handicapping contest in the country. The fees are $1,500 per entry.

    Contestants must pick 5 pro football games against the spread each week for the entire 17-week season. The individual that has the best record after the season will be deemed the winner.

    The LVH Casino at Westgate Las Vegas Resort is a hotel, casino, and convention center, which is located in Las Vegas, Nevada. LVH SuperBook vice-president Jay Kornegay is in charge of the SuperContest.

    This year's contest has 3,123 entries.

    Each week throughout the season, we'll post the Top 5 Consensus Picks in the SuperContest on Saturday afternoon and list all of the selections for each matchup.

    Week 16

    1) Seattle +2.5 (884)
    2) L.A. Chargers -4.5 (777) L
    3) Chicago -4 (735)
    4) Philadelphia -2.5 (711)
    5) Minnesota -5.5 (670)

    SUPERCONTEST WEEK 16 MATCHUPS & ODDS
    Away Team Selections Home Team Selections
    Washington (+9.5) 325 Tennessee (-9.5) 419
    Baltimore (+4.5) 634 L.A. Chargers (-4.5) 777
    Tampa Bay (+7.5) 371 Dallas (-7.5) 388
    Buffalo (+13) 474 New England (-13) 304
    Atlanta (-3.5) 404 Carolina (+3.5) 398
    Jacksonville (+4) 253 Miami (-4) 626
    N.Y. Giants (+9.5) 441 Indianapolis (-9.5) 351
    Houston (+2.5) 568 Philadelphia (-2.5) 711
    Minnesota (-5.5) 670 Detroit (+5.5) 323
    Green Bay (-2.5) 421 N.Y. Jets (+2.5) 296
    Cincinnati (+8.5) 335 Cleveland (-8.5) 421
    L.A. Rams (-14) 169 Arizona +14) 275
    Chicago (-4) 735 San Francisco (+4) 468
    Pittsburgh (+6) 483 New Orleans (-6) 585
    Kansas City (-2.5) 466 Seattle (+2.5) 884
    Denver (-2.5) 273 Oakland (+2.5) 427

    Consensus Results - 2017 | 2016

    WEEKLY AND OVERALL CONSENSUS RECORDS

    Week Consensus Record Overall Record Percentage
    1 4-1 4-1 80%
    2 0-5 4-6 40%
    3 3-2 7-8 47%
    4 3-2 10-10 50%
    5 1-4 11-14 44%
    6 1-4 12-18 40%
    7 4-1 16-19 46%
    8 5-0 21-19 53%
    9 5-0 26-19 58%
    10 2-3 28-22 56%
    11 2-3 30-25 55%
    12 2-3 32-28 53%
    13 2-3 34-31 52%
    14 2-3 36-34 51%
    15 2-3 38-37 51%
    16 - - -
    17 - - -
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Gridiron Angles - Week 16
    December 22, 2018
    By Vince Akins

    NFL CHOICE TRENDS:

    -- The Chiefs are 10-0 OU (13.05 ppg) since Dec 01, 2013 and after a loss where they rushed for a touchdown.

    -- The Browns are 0-11 OU (-9.68 ppg) since Oct 12, 2003 as a home favorite coming off a road game in which they outgained their opponent

    NFL PLAY ON ATS TREND:

    -- The Saints are 11-0 ATS (14.1 ppg) since Jan 16, 2010 at home when their last two games both went under the total.

    NFL PLAY AGAINST TREND:

    -- The Cowboys are 0-12 ATS (-7.8 ppg) since Dec 13, 2009 as a home favorite coming off a where they failed to cover by at least seven points.

    TOP NFL PLAYER ATS TREND:

    -- The Texans are 0-8 ATS (-7.3 ppg) since Dec 03, 2017 coming off a game where Deandre Hopkins had at least seven receptions.

    TOP NFL PLAYER OU TREND:

    -- The Dolphins are 7-0-1 OU (8.9 ppg) since Sep 18, 2016 when Ryan Tannehill threw for at least 300 yards last time they faced this team.

    NFL O/U UNDER TREND:


    -- The Eagles are 0-11 OU (-12.8 ppg) since Oct 20, 2013 at home coming off a win where they scored at least seven points more than expected.

    NFL O/U OVER TREND:

    -- The Packers are 10-0 OU (8.3 ppg) since Dec 03, 2015 on the road when they scored fewer points than expected last game.

    NFL BIBLE O/U ACTIVE TREND:

    -- The Vikings are 0-12 OU (-9.58 ppg) vs a divisional opponent on turf after a game in which they had fewer than 10 incompletions.

    NFL BIBLE ATS ACTIVE TREND:

    -- The Vikings are 13-0 ATS (11.42 ppg) after a home win in which Adam Thielen didn’t have a 22+ yard reception

    NFL OU SYSTEM:

    -- Dogs of more than 10 points which threw for at least three times as many yards as they ran for last game are 109-64-4 OU. Active on Arizona.
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Total Talk - Week 16
    December 22, 2018
    By Chris David


    Scoreboard operators weren’t that busy in Week 15 and that lack of production helped the ‘under’ go 9-6-1. The 16-game slate saw not one but two shutouts posted and both of the totals that closed in the thirties easily fell below their numbers. Through 15 weeks, the ‘under’ owns a 117-106-1 mark.

    2018 TOTAL RESULTS - GAME & HALVES

    O/U Game 1st Half 2nd Half
    Week 15 6-9-1 6-10 6-9-1

    O/U Game 1st Half 2nd Half
    Year-to-Date 106-117-1 110-114 97-121-6

    2018 RESULTS - OTHER
    O/U AFC-NFC Divisional Indoor Coast to Coast
    Week 15 1-5 2-2 1-1 1-0-1

    O/U AFC-NFC Divisional Indoor Coast to Coast
    Year-to-Date 28-26 34-39 19-23 11-6-1
    Line Moves and Public Leans

    Listed below are the largest line moves for Week 16 as of Saturday morning per BookMaker.eu.

    L.A. Rams at Arizona: 47 ½ to 44
    Tampa Bay at Dallas: 46 to 48
    Cincinnati at Cleveland: 46 to 44
    Denver at Oakland: 45 to 43
    Buffalo at New England: 45 ½ to 44

    Listed below are the five largest leans for Week 16 per the betting trend percentages on the VI Matchup index as of Saturday morning.

    L.A. Rams at Arizona: Under 93%
    Cincinnati at Cleveland: Under 85%
    Buffalo at New England: Over 80%
    Chicago at San Francisco: Over 80%
    Minnesota at Detroit: Under 77%

    Bragging Rights

    This will be the last week of non-conference action until the NFC and AFC square off in Super Bowl 53 next February. The ‘over’ has gone 28-26 on the season in these matchups but the ‘under’ went 5-1 last week. Tennessee and Washington will meet on Saturday afternoon before the final five games take place on Sunday.

    N.Y. Giants at Indianapolis: The Colts enter this game on a 5-0 ‘under’ run and they’ve seen the ‘under’ go 3-0 versus their first three NFC East opponents this season. The Indianapolis defense is very underrated and that unit has only allowed 12.2 points per game during the current streak to the low side. Knowing that, I’m a little surprised the total (48) is this high and we just saw the Giants get shutout 17-0 at home last Sunday to the Titans. However, New York was averaging 31.4 PPG in its previous five games before the bagel.

    Houston at Philadelphia: Playing the ‘under’ at Lincoln Financial Field has been golden again this season with the Eagles going 6-1 to the low side. Quarterback Nick Foles filled in nicely last week for the Birds at the Rams and you wonder if he can improve the offensive numbers (21.3 PPG) at home. If you’re leaning high in this matchup, then you need Houston to convert with sixes instead of threes. The Texans have 32 offensive touchdowns and 34 field goals this season.

    Green Bay at N.Y. Jets: The Packers have seen the ‘under’ go 3-0 in their three games versus the AFC this season. New York enters this game on a 4-1 ‘over’ run and weak defensive numbers (29.2 PG) have contributed to that cause. QB Aaron Rodgers (groin) could be on a short leash due to injury and it’s tough to gauge what you’ll get from the Packers knowing they’ve been eliminated from the playoffs.

    Pittsburgh at New Orleans: The Saints enter this game on a 5-0 ‘under’ run yet this total is still listed in the fifties (53). Pittsburgh hasn’t show much offensively (22.9 PPG) on the road but New Orleans is a juggernaut at home (38 PPG) and it hasn’t played at the Superdome since Thanksgiving. A lot of ‘cappers are buying Pittsburgh as an underdog and that’s understandable knowing that the Steelers have gone 4-0 in that role this season while averaging 24.5 PPG.

    Kansas City at Seattle: (See Below)

    Divisional Matchups

    Buffalo at New England: The ‘under’ has cashed in four of the last six in this series, which includes New England’s 25-6 win at Buffalo in Week 8. The Bills have struggled scoring on the road (15.1 PPG) and that’s led to a 5-2 ‘under’ mark. New England has certainly been more potent offensively (33.5 PPG) at Foxboro but a strong defense (19.7 PPG) has produced a 4-2 ‘under’ mark at home. The Patriots enter this game on 6-1 ‘under’ run and after losing two straight games, most are expecting this to be a ‘get-right’ game on both sides of the ball.

    Atlanta at Carolina: Tough total to handicap due to the injury to Carolina QB Cam Newton and nobody knows what to expect from rookie Taylor Heinicke. The Panthers enter this game on a six-game losing skid and they weren’t scoring with Cam, which helped the ‘under’ go 4-2. Will the kid turn them around? The ‘over’ (43 ½) cashed in the first meeting between the pair in Week 2 as Atlanta posted a 31-24 win at home. The Falcons are coming off a season-high 40-point effort last Sunday as they closed their home slate over the limited Cardinals. Unfortunately for Atlanta, the offense (20 PPG) hasn’t travelled well this season and the defense (27.2 PPG) remains shaky.

    Minnesota at Detroit: This series has leaned heavily to the ‘under’ with eight of the last 10 going to the low side. Minnesota captured a 24-9 home win over Detroit in Week 9 and the total on that game was 47. For the rematch, we’re looking at 42 and you can argue it should be lower even though the Vikings exploded for 41 last Sunday at home versus Miami. The Lions offense has been decimated this season due to injuries and trades. The unit is averaging 15.8 PPG in their last eight games, which has led to a 7-1 ‘under’ mark. Minnesota hasn’t been as sharp defensively on the road (25 PPG) but seeing Detroit get in this neighborhood seems like a stretch.

    Cincinnati at Cleveland: The script has flipped in this Ohio matchup with the Browns now listed as heavy favorites over the Bengals. Cleveland diced up Cincinnati 35-20 in Week 12 on the road and the ‘over’ (47) cashed. The total has dropped for the rematch to 44 and Cleveland enters this game on a 3-0 ‘under’ run while the Bengals are 2-0-1 to the low side in their last three.

    L.A. Rams at Arizona: The pair met in Los Angeles in Week 2 with the Rams blanking the Cardinals 34-0 and the ‘under’ (43) was never in doubt. The books made a mistake with this week’s opener (47 ½) and the number was chewed down to 44 quickly. L.A. hasn’t been sharp lately and it enters this game off two consecutive losses. Arizona is ranked last in scoring (13.7 PPG) and expecting them to eclipse that number is a reach. I’d be very surprised to see the Rams (-14) lose this game to the Cardinals, who could easily be 0-14 right now. Expecting a similar outcome to the first meeting is very possible but the status of Rams running back Todd Gurley (knee) could keep the offensive output in check.

    Denver at Oakland: (See Below)

    Under the Lights

    The ‘over’ went 2-1 last week in the primetime games and both of the tickets to the high side needed some late help, which was given in both the Chargers-Chiefs matchup on Thursday and the Eagles-Rams game on Sunday. Through 46 primetime games, the ‘over’ sits at 24-22 in games played under the lights this season.

    Primetime Total Results (O/U): TNF (10-5), SNF (6-9), MNF (8-8)

    Kansas City at Seattle:
    Along with the Saints-Steelers, this is the only other total listed in the fifties this week. While a couple tickets could’ve gone the other way, the Chiefs have seen the ‘over’ cash in their last four games. On the road, Kansas City has been a great ‘over’ bet (6-1). Seattle has gone 5-1 to the ‘over’ in the second-half of the season and the offense (29.1 PPG) has been clicking lately.

    Denver at Oakland: This Christmas Eve matchup looks like a toss-up and some pundits believe it could be the final game for the Raiders in Oakland. The ‘under’ has cashed in the last four encounters between the pair and that includes a 20-19 win by Denver in Week 2 at home. If you’re leaning to the high side, then you’re expecting the Broncos to take advantage of Oakland’s worst scoring defense (29.9 PPG).

    Fearless Predictions

    After the early games concluded, I thought our teaser was looking golden but I guess I underestimated the issue with both the Patriots and Steelers. We caught a push and that alleviated the weekly loss ($110) but we lost another piece of our bankroll ($755). As always, Press, Pass or Fade but in the end – Good Luck and Merry Christmas to you and yours!

    Best Over: Tampa Bay-Dallas 48
    Best Under: L.A. Rams-Arizona 44
    Best Team Total: Over Kansas City Chiefs 28

    Three-Team Total Teaser (+7.5, +105)
    Over Tampa Bay-Dallas 40 ½
    Under Jacksonville-Miami 45 ½
    Under Chicago-San Francisco 51
    Remember the 3 G's Gambling, Golf, Girls not in any particular order.....

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    Sharps, public hammer Eagles' odds for NFL Week 16 battle vs. Texans
    Patrick Everson

    Coach Doug Pederson and Philadelphia are still alive in the hunt for an NFC playoff berth. The Eagles opened as 3.5-point home underdogs against Houston, but were bet up to 2.5-point favorites.

    Week 16 of the NFL season has an intriguing 13-game Sunday slate. We check in on the action and line movement for four of those contests, with insights from Derek Wilkinson, supervisor at The SuperBook at Westgate in Las Vegas.

    Houston Texans at Philadelphia Eagles – Open: +3.5; Move: +1; Move: Pick; Move: -1; Move: -1.5; Move: -2; Move: -2.5; Move: -1.5; Move: -2; Move: -1.5; Move: -2.5

    Defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia kept its playoff hopes alive in Week 15, pulling off one of the bigger upsets of the season. The Eagles (7-7 SU, 5-9 ATS) went off as 13.5-point underdogs at the Los Angeles Rams in the Sunday nighter, but exited with a 30-23 outright victory.

    Houston had its nine-game SU win streak (6-3 ATS) halted by Indianapolis in Week 14, but bounced back in Week 15. The Texans (10-4 SU, 6-7-1 ATS) beat the New York Jets 29-22 to push as 7-point road favorites.

    Prior to the Eagles’ Sunday night upset, The SuperBook opened the Texans -3.5 for today’s 1 p.m. ET kickoff in Philly. However, the line was taken off the board during that Sunday night game, and when it was rehung Monday, the Texans were down to -1. The line quickly jumped the fence from there and is now 6 points from where it started.

    “Almost all the money is on the Eagles, and it looks like some sharp bets as well,” Wilkinson said, noting wiseguys and the public are on Philadelphia. “I’m surprised it moved that much. They believe in Nick Foles.”


    Buffalo Bills at New England Patriots – Open: -10.5; Move: -12; Move: -12.5; Move: -12; Move: -11.5; Move: -12; Move: -12.5; Move: -13; Move: -12.5; Move: -13.5

    This 1 p.m. ET start looks like a nothingburger of a game, but New England is getting pounded at The SuperBook, after a rare two-game losing streak. Last week, the Patriots (9-5 SU, 8-6 ATS) lost to Pittsburgh 17-10 as 2.5-point road favorites, following a stunning last-second loss at Miami.

    Buffalo put a 2-6 SU slide (3-5 ATS) to rest in Week 15, but just barely. The Bills (5-9 SU and ATS) edged Detroit 14-13 on a fourth-quarter touchdown, failing to cover as 2.5-point home favorites.

    “That’s gonna be our biggest decision of the day,” Wilkinson said. “We’ve got a ton of liability on New England. Everybody and their mom is putting money on the Patriots. No sharp guys are betting on the Bills, either. We’re in a hole right now with the Patriots.

    “Unfortunately, we’ll be rooting for the Bills, which is never a position you want to be in.”


    Pittsburgh Steelers at New Orleans Saints – Open: -6.5; Move: -5.5; Move: -6; Move: -6.5

    Pittsburgh had control of the AFC North a month ago, but now is in a dogfight with Baltimore, after the Ravens beat the Chargers on Saturday night. The Steelers (8-5-1 SU, 7-6-1 ATS) halted a three-game SU and ATS skid in Week 15 by holding off New England 17-10 as 2.5-point home favorites.

    New Orleans is on the brink of clinching the NFC’s No. 1 seed, and can do so with a win in this 4:25 p.m. ET clash. The Saints (12-2 SU, 10-3 ATS) slogged their way to a 12-9 Monday night victory over Carolina as 6-point home faves in Week 15.

    “Our liability right now is on the Saints, so we need the Steelers,” Wilkinson said. “But it’s not a big decision yet. I’m sure we’ll get much more money (today).”


    Kansas City Chiefs at Seattle Seahawks – Open: +2.5; Move: +2; Move: +1.5

    Kansas City got some breathing room in its quest for the top seed in the AFC, thanks to the Los Angeles Chargers falling to Baltimore on Saturday night. In the Week 15 Thursday nighter, the Chiefs (11-3 SU, 8-5-1 ATS) blew a 28-14 fourth-quarter lead against the Chargers, losing 29-28 as 3.5-point home favorites.

    Seattle put together a four-game SU streak to get into the NFC playoff picture, but stubbed its toe in Week 15. The Seahawks (8-6 SU, 8-4-2 ATS) were 3.5-point favorites at San Francisco and lost outright 26-23 in overtime.

    “A lot of money on the Seahawks. A few five-figure bets, one at +2.5 and one at +1.5, from house players though,” Wilkinson said of the Sunday nighter, an 8:20 p.m. ET start. “The public for sure likes the Seahawks. We’re probably gonna need the Chiefs, but I think we’ll get some K.C. money late, so that game should even out some.”
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-24-2018 at 08:41 PM.

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    Essentials - Week 16
    Tony Mejia

    Sunday
    Tampa Bay at Dallas (-5.5/45.5), 1 p.m. ET, FOX:
    Last week’s 23-0 loss in Indianapolis shut down a five-game winning streak, but that run still has them in great shape to win the NFC East since it includes a pair of wins over the second-place Eagles. Taking care of business at home against the Bucs would take a lot of pressure off a Week 17 visit game at the Giants, but it’s going to require getting the offense back on track against a defense that has improved over the past five games, surrendering 20 or fewer points in four of six after spending the first half of the season near the bottom of the league due to injuries and poor play. Jameis Winston is struggling to generate offense and does get De’Sean Jackson back as a target, but those two have never enjoyed great chemistry. It’s no coincidence Jackson is coming back specifically for this game after being out all month with various ailments.

    The Bucs boarded a plane to Texas specifically to play spoiler, so the Cowboys don’t have the luxury of being complacent. Key LB Sean Lee will be available for more action than he saw last week and offensive linemen Tyron Smith and Zack Martin should play, although Martin’s status is more tenuous due to a knee issue. Tampa Bay has seen the ‘under’ prevail in four straight games and came in last week despite being set lower (44.5) than it had been all season.

    Buffalo at New England (-3/49), 1 p.m. ET, CBS:
    The Patriots won the first meeting between these teams 25-6, but Tom Brady failed to throw a touchdown pass and New England didn’t pull away until the fourth quarter, settling for four field goals through the first three quarters. Derek Anderson was the quarterback for the Bills in Week 8, so rookie Josh Allen will be getting his first taste of Bill Belichick’s sting. The veteran coach eats first-year signal callers the way the rest of us consume late-night sweets, snacking on them without fail. New England has owned Buffalo, so this game has the potential to restore order considering it has dropped consecutive games for the second time this season despite being a road favorite in Miami and Pittsburgh.

    Of course, struggling to put away the Bills would further hammer in the narrative that New England is falling off, one that has been proven wrong over and over again the past few years but only needs to come to fruition once to change everything. Rob Gronkowski has been dealing with back and ankle issues that contributed to him catching just two passes last week and Josh Gordon stepped away due to an impending suspension after his latest positive drug test, so Brady will have to solve a talented defense with depleted options. Rookie Sony Michel has only reached the end zone once in the past six games. Buffalo will have DT Kyle Williams and RB LeSean McCoy in the fold to try and put an dent in a stretch that has seen it drop 32 of 36 games against New England since 2000. Both of the Bills’ wins in Foxboro during that stretch have come via shutout. Temperatures will hover around 40 degrees, but it it is otherwise expected to be a mild December day at Gillette Stadium.

    Atlanta at Carolina (-1.5/46.5), 1 p.m. ET, FOX:
    The Panthers are giving Cam Newton the week off to rest the ailing shoulder he’s been playing on for the past few months, essentially ending their playoff pursuit. The Falcons are already done, having been besieged by injuries and inconsistent play, but they come off a 40-point outburst in their home finale against Arizona last week and are favored here with Julio Jones cleared to play after suffering a rib injury last week. The defense held the Saints to 12 points last week with LB Deion Jones back and will have DT Terrell McClain and corner Desmond Trufant available to make life difficult on first-time starter Taylor Heinicke, who has completed three of five passes in his short career. The 25-year-old was born in Atlanta and played at Suwannee H.S. before becoming attending Old Dominion. The Falcons have won five of six in this series and may further benefit from Carolina pulling back some if RB Christian McCaffrey’s workload decreases.

    Jacksonville at Miami (-3/38), 1 p.m. ET, CBS:
    Between these two, the Dolphins are alive for a playoff spot as they take the field for their home finale looking to go 7-1 at Hard Rock Stadium, where they’ve already beaten Tennessee, Chicago and New England. The Jaguars have dropped nine of 10, beating only the Colts (6-0, Dec. 2) and topping 20 points only twice within that stretch. QB Cody Kessler was the team’s leading rusher with 68 yards on six carries in last week’s 16-13 loss to Washington but finished just 9-for-17 for 57 yards through the air.

    The Jaguars have only played in Miami twice since coming into the league, winning their first meeting in ’06 before losing 24-3 in their last trip back in 2012. Leonard Fournette will play, but it remains to be seen how much he can do as he comes in off a foot injury and hasn’t looked like himself throughout most of the season. The Dolphins hope to have LB Kiko Alonso out there despite a knee issue but have ruled out safety T.J. McDonald. RB Frank Gore was placed on IR, so fourth-round pick Kalen Ballage is expected to get more carries next to Kenyan Drake, who scored on a 69-yard miracle play last time he touched the ball at home against the Patriots. Miami fell 41-17 in Minnesota last week.

    N.Y. Giants at Indianapolis (-1/43.5), 1 p.m. ET, CBS:
    The Colts also remain alive for a playoff spot but got no help on Saturday night with the Titans rallying past the ‘Skins and the Ravens pulling off an upset over the Chargers to each post their ninth victory. Indianapolis will visit Nashville next week and now needs to close on a four-game winning streak to try and reach the postseason. Andrew Luck threw touchdown passes in his first 11 games this season and had a run of eight games throwing at least three, but he’s come up empty in two of his three December outings. It’s vital that he gets up and running again and will have top target T.Y. Hilton back after being cleared to return despite an ankle sprain. New York’s Eli Manning has made it to Week 16 as the starter, which is a small wonder given how this season has gone for the Giants. Odell Beckham Jr. was ruled out for a second straight week but Manning will have Sterling Shepard to throw to after some concern that he’d join Russell Shepard and OBJ in missing this contest. The Colts will look to keep Saquon Barkley from finding a rhythm and will sell out to do so, which means Manning will have opportunities to push the ball downfield. Indianapolis impressively blanked the Cowboys last week but will be without a couple of key defenders here. Look for the x-factor here to be Indianapolis RB Marlon Mack, who touched it 28 times for 149 yards in last week’s win over Dallas and has scored eight touchdowns in eight wins. The Colts are 5-0 when he finds the end zone.

    Houston at Philadelphia (-3/48.5), 1 p.m. ET, CBS:
    The Eagles are hoping Nick Foles’ magic can deliver another playoff appearance after he came up with another upset of the Rams last week, prevailing as a 13.5-point underdog. The defending champs have still been collectively outscored by seven points despite getting back to .500 after Carson Wentz was again lost for the season. The defense came up with a huge effort to aid the cause last week but is still a mess in the back due to injuries. The strength of the unit remains up front, so look for that group to try and make Deshaun Watson’s first visit to Philadelphia unpleasant. DT Fletcher Cox has been upgraded to probable, while guard Senio Kelemete remains questionable. The Texans will be without RB Lamar Miller, who didn’t make the trip after suffering an ankle injury in last weekend’s win over the Jets.

    Houston has won 10 of 11 games to put itself in position to earn a first-round bye ahead of the Patriots, but would lose a head-to-head tie-breaker against them and need to stay one game clear by winning out. The Texans are expected to see D’Onta Foreman debut alongside Alfred Blue to try and minimize the damage over losing Miller. They won’t have rookie slot receiver Keke Coutee again but will have top target DeAndre Hopkins gutting it out through an ankle issue. Corner Kayvon Webster was activated from IR, which definitely helps since the availability of top CB Johnathan Joseph will be in question until game-time. Temperatures are expected to be in the mid-40s for this one.

    Minnesota (-3.5/54.5) at Detroit, 1 p.m. ET, FOX:
    The Vikings are hoping to celebrate Christmas with a playoff spot assured, but can only unwrap that present if the Texans aid their cause and they’re able to take care of business on the road against a division rival that they didn’t trail against once in a 24-9 Week 9 win to open November. DE Danielle Hunter recorded 3.5 sacks and scooped a fumble and rumbled into the end zone, so keeping him from Matthew Stafford is Detroit’s top priority. After dealing away Golden Tate and losing WR Marvin Jones, Jr. and rookie RB Kerryon Johnson for the season, the Lions offense has sputtered and hasn’t produced more than 17 points in any of the last four games. Top target Kenny Golladay (chest) has been cleared to play to aid the cause, while tackle Rick Wagner has been cleared from concussion protocol.

    Minnesota’s defense has overcome a shaky start and is again imposing. The Vikings sacked Detroit 10 times and held Detroit to under 10 points, so Mike Zimmer will be counting on making sure Stafford doesn’t find a rhythm enough to play spoiler. Offensively, the Vikings must be wary of Matt Patricia’s defense, which does come in relatively healthy and has been productive over the past month-plus with DE Ziggy Ansah and top corner Darius Slay both in the mix. The Lions have dropped consecutive games against the Vikes.

    Green Bay (-2.5/44.5) at N.Y. Jets, 1 p.m. ET, FOX:
    Aaron Rodgers continuing to play despite the Packers being eliminated is a mild surprise, but does speak volumes about his leadership after essentially winning a power struggle with the now fired Mike McCarthy. Any progress the Pack can make now will benefit them next year, so count on Rodgers continuing to work with rookie receivers Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Equanimeous St. Brown, who will both be pressed into larger roles with Randall Cobb not in the mix. Tackle Bryan Bulaga has also been cleared to play, so Rodgers should have support up front.

    The Jets have dropped seven of eight and haven’t won at home since rookie Sam Darnold won a shootout against Andrew Luck and the Colts way back on Oct. 14. He won’t have top target Quincy Enunwa and lost RBs Isaiah Crowell and Bilal Powell weeks ago, so Darnold is working short-handed. Rodgers will have Jamaal Williams as his primary back since Aaron Jones was lost to an ankle injury last week. Temperatures in East Rutherford will be in the low 40s with mild wind, so the quarterbacks won’t have to battle the elements.

    Cincinnati at Cleveland (-5/52.5), 1 p.m. ET, CBS:
    The Browns have been officially eliminated from playoff contention, but remain engaged as they try to win out in order to finish above .500. A lot has been made about the Browns being such a heavy favorite for this matchup, but the Bengals do arrive in town depleted and got beat 35-20 at home a few weeks ago in a game where Andy Dalton was lost for the season and backup QB Jeff Driskel came in and produced a few scores to try and save face. Cleveland has won four of five games and has really responded to the play-calling of Freddie Kitchens on the offensive side of the ball in addition to Gregg Williams’ aggressive defense.

    The Bengals lost WR Tyler Boyd and have been without A.J. Green as well, so Driskel will have to beat the Browns’ blitz with his legs and perhaps the speedy John Ross in addition to a heavy dose of the screen game with Joe Mixon featured. Linebacker Vontaze Burfict is questionable to return for a defense that has already been without numerous key contributors. Cleveland is favored to sweep the Bengals for the first time since ’02. The Browns secondary should be at full strength since Jabrill Peppers hopes to return from a neck injury and standout rookie safety Denzel Ward has cleared concussion protocol. There will be some wind gusts to deal with, but temperatures will be above freezing throughout this contest.

    L.A. Rams (-3.5/40) at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. ET, FOX:
    - The availability of standout running back Todd Gurley will be up in the air until just before kickoff since he’s looking to play but the team wants him to warm up so they can feel comfortable with his knee injury being a thing of the past. Although they’re looking to lock up homefield advantage in the NFC and is chasing New Orleans while trying to hold off Chicago, the cautious approach would definitely be recommended given the opposition. Backup Justin Davis is unlikely to play due to a shoulder injury, so newly-signed veteran C.J. Anderson may be in for a heavy workload.

    L.A. is looking for Jared Goff to bounce back in Glendale after throwing five interceptions without a touchdown in the team’s two losses the past few weeks, contributing greatly to setbacks against the Bears and Eagles. He’s missed Cooper Kupp, but has Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks available. Patrick Peterson can’t cover them both at the same time, so it’s important to see Goff get going again. Sean McVay would also love to see him avoid being picked off since it’s happened to him in all three December contests after he tossed only two in a six-game stretch between Oct. 14 and all of November. The Cardinals have a laundry list of injuries and are the week’s biggest underdog.
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-23-2018 at 01:30 PM.

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    Betting Recap - Week 16
    Joe Williams

    Overall Notes

    National Football League Week 16 Results

    Wager Favorites-Underdogs
    Straight Up 12-3
    Against the Spread 5-8-2

    Wager Home-Away
    Straight Up 7-8
    Against the Spread 1-12-2

    Wager Totals (O/U)
    Over-Under 6-8-1

    National Football League Year-to-Date Results
    Wager Favorites-Underdogs
    Straight Up 154-82-2
    Against the Spread 104-124-10

    Wager Home-Away
    Straight Up 143-93-2
    Against the Spread 112-116-10

    Wager Totals (O/U)
    Over-Under 110-126-2

    The largest underdogs to win straight up
    Ravens (+4, ML +180) at Chargers, 22-10
    Jaguars (+3, ML +150) at Dolphins, 17-7

    The largest favorite to cover
    Rams (-14) at Cardinals, 31-9
    Vikings (-6.5) at Lions, 27-9
    Bears (-3.5) at 49ers, 14-9

    Road Kings

    -- It was a great day to beat the road teams. Heading into the Sunday Night Football game between the Kansas City Chiefs-Seattle Seahawks the away team was 12-0-2 against the spread (ATS). The Seahawks ended up being the first home team to cover, as they entered the SNF game as short 'dogs (+1) at CenturyLink Field.

    Dressed To The Nines

    -- It's more of a coincidence than anything else, obviously, but it's fun if you like numbers. The teams which covered the highest spreads in Week 16 each allowed nine points. The Los Angeles Rams laid the most points (-14) in their 31-9 road win over the Arizona Cardinals. The Minnesota Vikings (-6.5) won and covered 27-9 on the road against the Detroit Lions. The Chicago Bears also posted a 14-9 win against the San Francisco 49ers in a chippy game, covering a 3.5-point number at most shops.

    Total Recall

    -- The game with the highest total on the board was the Kansas City Chiefs-Seattle Seahawks (54.5), and it got off to a bit of a slow start. However, it ended up going well over with 45 total points in the second half. The Pittsburgh Steelers-New Orleans Saints (53.5) game was expected to be a shootout, and it didn't disappoint. While there were 52 points on the board through three quarters, there were some tense moments for a bit in the fourth with just seven total points, but it cashed the over.

    -- Perhaps the worst bad beat of the season occurred in the Washington Redskins-Tennessee Titans (38) game on Saturday night. It's the kind of game you're likely to see on ESPN's 'Bad Beats' segment with Scott Van Pelt and Stanford Steve. The Titans were leading 18-16 on the final, last gasp for the Redskins. DB Malcolm Butler picked off a pass with no time left and rather than go down, he worked as hard as possible to run it back all the way for a pick-six. It flipped what should have been an 'under' result to an 'over', and affected some teaser plays, too.

    -- The 'over/under' went 1-1 this week through the first two primetime games with the Monday nighter between the Denver Broncos-Oakland Raiders (43.5) still pending. Overall for the 2018 season the 'over' in primetime games is 25-24 (51.0%).

    Officially, the 'over' finished 25-23-1 (52.1%) in 49 games under the lights in 2017.

    In 2016, the 'over' in night games went (52.9%) through 51 games.

    In 2015, the over finished 20-28-1 (41.7%) in 49 primetime games.

    In 2014, the over went 33-17 (66.0%) in primetime games, and the over was 28-22 (56.0%) in 2013.

    Injury Report

    -- Colts TE Eric Ebron (concussion) left the Week 16 battles against the Giants and he entered the league's mandated concussion protocol.

    -- Falcons RB Tevin Coleman (groin) was unable to return to Sunday's game in Carolina, leaving Atlanta down its top three running backs.

    -- 49ers RB Matt Breida (ankle) left the Week 16 battle against the Bears after turning an ankle and he was unable to return.

    -- Texans WR Demaryius Thomas (Achilles') was forced out of Sunday's game in Philadelphia and he might have suffered a long-term injury.

    Looking Ahead

    -- The 'over' has cashed in six straight meetings between the Lions and Packers. The favorite is 20-7 ATS in the past 27 in this series, and the Lions are 2-5 ATS in the past seven trips to Lambeau.

    -- The over is 4-1 in the past battle between the Falcons and Buccaneers, although the under is 5-2 in the past seven at the RayJay. The favorite is 11-4-1 ATS in the past 16 meetings.

    -- The over has hit in five straight betweeen the Panthers and Saints under the dome, and the over is 7-2 in the past nine in this series. The Panthers are 13-5 ATS in the past 18 trips to NOLA, with the underdog 8-1 ATS in the past nine meetings. The road team is also 24-11 ATS in the past 35.

    -- The home team is 4-0 ATS in the past four meetings in this series. The under is 19-8 in the past 27 meetings, with the under 16-5 in the past 21 in K.C.

    -- The under is 5-0 in the past five between the Jets and Patriots. The home team is 6-1-1 ATS in the past eight, although the Jets are 7-3-1 ATS in the past 11 in this series.

    -- The Jaguars are 5-1-1 ATS in the past seven trips to Houston, with the road team 4-1 ATS in the past five and the underdog also 4-1 ATS in the past five.

    -- The home team is 7-3 ATS in the past 10 battles between the Dolphins and Bills, with Miami 1-5 ATS in the past six trips to Buffalo.

    -- The under has connected in five straight meetings between the Cowboys and the Giants.

    -- The favorite has hit in four straight meetings between the Eagles and Redskins.

    -- Chicago is 4-1 ATS in the past five meetings with Minnesota, although the home team is 23-9 ATS in the past 32 meetings. The under is 10-4 in the past 14 meetings, including 5-2 in the past seven in the Twin Cities.

    -- The Cardinals are 3-0-1 ATS in the past four meetings with the Seahawks, and they're 4-1 ATS in the past five in Seattle. The road team is also 6-1-1 ATS in the past eight, with the underdog 6-0-1 ATS in the past seven.

    -- The 49ers are 5-1 ATS in the past six meetings, and 4-1 ATS in the past five road games against the Rams.

    -- Cincinnati is 7-19-1 ATS in the past 27 meetings with the Steelers, including 1-4 ATS in the past five trips to the Steel City. The under is also 7-2 in the past nine meetings in Pittsburgh.

    -- The underdog is 4-1-1 ATS in the past six meetings between the Chargers and Broncos, while the Bolts are 8-2-5 ATS in the past 15 trips to the Mile High City. The over is 4-0 in the past four battles in Denver.

    -- The Browns are just 1-5 ATS in the past six meetings with the Ravens, although the road team is 12-5-1 ATS in the past 18 in this series. The under has cashed in four straight meetings, and the under is 6-1 in the past seven battles in Charm City.

    -- The home team has covered in five of the past seven trips, and the favorite is 4-0 ATS in the past four meetings. The Colts are 11-3 ATS in the past 14 in the series with the over 4-1 in the past five meetings in the Music City.
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-24-2018 at 08:40 PM.

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    MNF - Broncos at Raiders
    Kevin Rogers

    LAST WEEK

    The Broncos (6-8 SU, 6-7-1 ATS) took a major hit to their slim playoff hopes by dropping their second straight game in a 17-16 home defeat to the surging Browns. Denver’s offense failed to come through once again after being held to 14 points in a road defeat at San Francisco the previous week. Since starting the season 2-0 at home, Denver fell to 1-4 in their last five games at Broncos Stadium at Mile High.

    Denver actually led this game going into the fourth quarter at 13-10, but Cleveland took the lead early in the fourth on a Baker Mayfield touchdown pass. The Broncos made a crucial fourth down stop to take possession back late, but Denver could only reach midfield and turned the ball over on downs. Quarterback Case Keenum was intercepted twice and threw for 257 yards, as the former Vikings’ signal-caller was picked off for the first time since Week 8 at Kansas City. After posting back-to-back 100+ yard games against Pittsburgh and Cincinnati, rookie running back Phillip Lindsay was held to under 30 yards for the second straight week (24 yards on 13 carries).

    The Raiders (3-11 SU, 5-9 ATS) picked up consecutive covers as a double-digit home underdog against Kansas City and Pittsburgh, including stunning the Steelers in Week 14 at the Black Hole, 24-21. However, the Silver and Black crashed back to Earth in a 30-16 defeat to the Bengals last Sunday as three-point underdogs. The loss was the sixth in seven tries away from the Oakland Coliseum, while the Raiders fell to 2-5 ATS on the highway.

    The Bengals jumped out to a 17-0 second quarter lead and never looked back as the Raiders’ lone touchdown came on a Derek Carr one-yard connection to Lee Smith (no, not the Hall of Fame relief pitcher). Oakland rushed for only 68 yards against Cincinnati, one week after putting up 55 yards against Pittsburgh, which is huge drop-off following a 171-yard ground effort against Kansas City in Week 14.

    BUMPY ROAD

    Last season, the Broncos picked up only one road win in eight tries, which didn’t come until Week 15 at Indianapolis. This season, Denver started 0-2 away from Mile High following double-digit defeats to the Ravens and Jets, but put together its most complete effort of the season in a Week 7 blowout at Arizona. The Broncos continued to stay competitive on the highway by covering in a loss at Kansas City and rallying past the Chargers as 7 ½-point underdogs in Week 11.

    Denver cruised past Cincinnati in Week 13 as a four-point favorite, but crashed and burned the following week at San Francisco in a 20-14 defeat as the Niners built a 20-0 halftime lead and the Broncos scored a pair of late touchdowns to make the final score look closer.

    UNDER THUNDER

    Sticking with the Broncos, Vance Joseph’s team is riding a six-game UNDER streak dating back to a 19-17 home loss to the Texans in Week 9. Denver has not scored more than 24 points since dropping 45 points at Arizona in mid-October, while limiting the last six opponents to 22 points or fewer. All six totals in this stretch have sat between 45 and 47 ½, as Monday’s will be the lowest total for Denver since Week 7. By the way, in all three games that Denver has seen a total of 43 or less, the OVER has hit all three times.

    THE FINAL HOLE?

    There is speculation that the Raiders may be done in Oakland following the season with its pending move to Las Vegas in 2020. So does that mean this is the final game at the Black Hole if the Raiders go elsewhere for 2019? Two of Oakland’s three wins have come at home this season, but the team has lost to the Rams, Colts, Chargers, and Chiefs as an underdog. Yes, the Raiders have covered in their last two games at home, but this is their lowest underdog number at the Coliseum since a Week 8 loss to Indianapolis, 42-28 as 3 ½-point ‘dogs.

    SERIES HISTORY

    The home team has dominated this series since 2016 by winning each of the last five meetings. Denver rallied to stun Oakland in Week 2 at Mile High Stadium, 20-19 as the Broncos scored the final 13 points of the game. Brandon McManus booted the game-winning field goal with 10 seconds remaining to cap off the comeback, but the Raiders still picked up the cover as 5 ½-point underdogs.

    Carr finished with 288 yards passing for Oakland with 116 of those yards going to star wide receiver Amari Cooper. The Raiders won’t have the luxury of throwing to Cooper, as he putting up tremendous numbers with the Cowboys after getting traded midseason. Lindsay rushed for 107 yards in the win, as the game finished UNDER the total of 44. Each of the past four matchups have gone UNDER the total, while Denver’s last victory at Oakland came in 2015.

    MONDAY NIGHT LIGHTS

    Under Joseph, the Broncos have lost two of three Monday night contests, including the 27-23 defeat in the final minutes to Kansas City back in September. The last time Denver won on the road on a Monday night came in the incredible comeback at San Diego in 2012 as the Broncos erased a 24-0 halftime deficit to stun the Chargers, 35-24.

    The Raiders have dropped four of their last five Monday night affairs dating back to 2012. The last time Oakland and Denver hooked up on Monday night came in 2013, as the Broncos drubbed the Raiders, 37-21 as 16-point home favorites. Favorites have won the last five weeks on Monday night football, as the last road favorite to cover was New England back in Week 8 at Buffalo.

    HANDICAPPER’S CORNER

    NFL expert Joe Nelson checks in for the Monday night season finale as he begins his breakdown with the offensive numbers for these AFC West rivals, “Both teams have fairly average offensive statistics with a slight passing edge for the Raiders and a slight ground edge for the Broncos. The per-game defensive yardage numbers are also nearly identical despite the contrasting reputations for these defenses though Denver has been significantly stronger in scoring defense and against the run.”

    After the Broncos looked like they upgraded at quarterback in the offseason, Nelson notes that move has not paid dividends, “Keenum has ultimately been a huge disappointment after being the #2 QBR player last season while with Minnesota. He is currently 29th in that metric only ahead of Ryan Tannehill and rookies Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen among qualified players. Carr sits just two spots above Keenum as his star has certainly fallen from his great 2016 numbers.”

    GAME PROPS – Courtesy of Westgate Las Vegas Superbook

    Total Gross Passing Yards – Case Keenum
    OVER 240 ½ (-110)
    UNDER 240 ½ (-110)

    Total Touchdown Passes – Case Keenum
    OVER 1 ½ (+110)
    UNDER 1 ½ (-130)

    Total Rushing Yards – Phillip Lindsay
    OVER 75 ½ (-110)
    UNDER 75 ½ (-110)

    Total Completions – Derek Carr
    OVER 23 ½ (-110)
    UNDER 23 ½ (-110)

    Total Touchdown Passes – Derek Carr
    OVER 1 ½ (+120)
    UNDER 1 ½ (-140)

    Total Receiving Yards – Jared Cook
    OVER 52 ½ (-110)
    UNDER 52 ½ (-110)

    LINE MOVEMENT

    The Broncos opened as 2 ½-point favorites at the Westgate last Sunday, as that number has moved up to 3 at most books. The Westgate released the total at 44 ½, but has gone to 43 ½ at many locations and even down to 43 at some books.
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-24-2018 at 08:42 PM.

  12. #27
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    Eagles' season on line, but early bettors hit Redskins' odds in NFL Week 17
    Patrick Everson

    The final week of the NFL regular season is shaping up to be a doozy, with playoff berths and positioning still very much in the air, beyond the certainty of the Saints being No. 1 in the NFC. We check in on the opening lines and early action for a quartet of key matchups, with insights from John Murray, director of The SuperBook at Westgate in Las Vegas.

    Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins (+7)

    Defending Super Bowl champion Philadelphia remains in the NFC playoff chase, though it needs to win and get some help in Week 17. The Eagles (8-7 SU, 6-9 ATS) blew a 13-point third-quarter lead against Houston, but got a field goal as time expired to claim a 32-30 victory as 1-point road favorites in Week 16.

    Washington still had very slim postseason hopes heading into Week 16, but now is entirely out of the hunt. The Redskins (7-8 SU, 9-6 ATS) had a shot to beat Tennessee late, but Josh Johnson – the fourth QB of the year for the ‘Skins – threw a pick-six as time expired in a 25-16 loss as 11.5-point road underdogs.

    “We opened the Eagles -7, took some money on the Redskins and moved to 6.5,” Murray said. “The Eagles are in the playoffs with a win and a Vikings loss, but the Redskins have been playing tough the last couple of weeks.”


    Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings (-6.5)

    Chicago has already clinched the NFC North and the No. 3 seed, but could move up to No. 2 and a bye with a Week 17 win and a Rams loss to the visiting 49ers. In Week 16, the Bears (11-4 SU and ATS) slogged their way to a 14-9 victory at San Francisco as 4-point faves.

    Minnesota will make the playoffs with a Week 17 win and could still get there with a loss, though it would need some help. The Vikings (8-6-1 SU and ATS) trailed at Detroit 9-0 in the second quarter, then scored 27 unanswered points in a 27-9 victory laying 6.5 points.

    “They had to move this game to the (later) time slot,” Murray said, noting this contest was originally set for 1 p.m. ET and was moved to 4:25 p.m. ET. “Otherwise, it would’ve given the Rams a big advantage. Los Angeles could have sat back and watched this game to see if the Bears win. If Chicago doesn’t win, the Rams clinch the bye. Vikings win, and they’re in.”

    The line was still Vikings -6.5 late Sunday night, with bettors unsure of where to take the game yet.


    Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens (-6.5)

    Baltimore could win the AFC North, land a wild-card spot or miss the playoffs altogether, although a Week 17 win cements the division title and a postseason bid. The Ravens (9-6 SU, 8-7 ATS) won five of their last six games, including a 22-10 Week 17 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers as 4-point road pups.

    Cleveland is finishing up a very un-Cleveland like year, after going 0-16 SU and 4-12 ATS in 2017-18. Like Baltimore, the Browns (7-7-1 SU, 9-6 ATS) have won five of six, beating Cincinnati 26-18 giving 10 points at home in Week 17.

    “We opened Ravens -6.5, then moved down to 5.5 to get in line with the market,” Murray said. “The Ravens win the AFC North with a victory here. But those Browns are dangerous.”


    Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans (no line)

    Indianapolis is 8-1 SU in its last nine games and would be in the playoffs right now, though it must win in Week 17 to stay there. The Colts (9-6 SU, 7-7-1 ATS) went off as 10-point home favorites against the Giants in Week 16, but trailed 14-0 early and never led until a last-minute touchdown clinched a 28-27 victory.

    Tennessee is in the same boat as Indy, as it’s a winner-take-all, loser-goes-home game. In Week 16, the Titans (9-6 SU, 8-7 ATS) beat Washington 25-16 giving 11.5 points at home, but lost quarterback Marcus Mariota to a stinger. Mariota’s status for this Week 17 Sunday nighter has not been announced yet.

    “We’re waiting to hear on Mariota,” Murray said in noting why the line wasn’t posted Sunday night. “If he goes, this game should be around a pick ’em. If he doesn’t, I’d expect the Colts to be in the neighborhood of -3/-3.5.”
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-24-2018 at 08:43 PM.

  13. #28
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    Armadillo: Monday's six-pack

    Top 6 picks for Week 16 of Westgate SuperBook NFL handicapping contest:

    1) Seattle Seahawks, +2.5 (884)- W

    2) Los Angeles Chargers, -4.5 (777)- L

    3) Chicago Bears, -4 (735)- W

    4) Philadelphia Eagles, -2.5 (711)- L

    5) Minnesota Vikings, -5.5 (670)- W

    6) Baltimore Ravens, +4.5 (634)- W

    Season record: 51-44-3


    **********

    Armadillo: Monday's List of 13: Wrapping up an NFL Sunday……

    Saints 31, Steelers 28— Wth 4:11 left, Steelers had ball on their own 42, 4th-and-5, while leading 28-24. They faked a bleeping punt, and it failed. Football coaches have gone off the rails this season, going for it on 4th down, and all the ex-player TV analysts applaud them for it.

    Here’s a hint, Mike Tomlin; your QB is going to the Hall of Fame, he’s really good. Steelers gained 429 yards in this game, converted 6-13 third down plays. How about putting the game in Roethlisberger’s hands, instead of a special teamer? Just a thought.

    Should be mentioned that if the Steelers had punted and pinned the Saints back deep in their own territory, New Orleans had zero TD’s on their previous three drives, but Saints only had to drive 46 yards for the game-winning score. It is almost like Tomlin is trying to get fired.

    Pittsburgh needs to beat the Bengals next week and hope that the Browns upset Baltimore, or else they’ll miss playoffs for first time since 2013.

    Seahawks 38, Chiefs 31— Mirage sportsbook here in Las Vegas took a $220,000 wager on the Chiefs to cover this game as a 1-point favorite; whoops.

    Seattle clinched a playoff spot and likely will play at Dallas in one of the Wild Card games; they ran ball for 210 yards in this game. Under Carroll, Seahawks are 13-5 as home underdogs. Six of last seven games for both teams went over the total.

    Chiefs need to beat Oakland next week to claim the #1-seed and a first round bye in playoffs;

    Eagles 32, Texans 30— Are we sure that Carson Wentz should be the Eagles’ starting QB? Nick Foles threw for 471 yards, four TD’s, and led a drive for the game-winning FG at the gun.

    Houston scored pair of TD’s in 4th quarter to rally from a 29-16 deficit and looked to have ended the Eagles’ season, but they couldn’t hang on and slipped to the #3 seed in AFC, letting Patriots move ahead of them in the race for a first round bye.

    Darren Sproles scored a TD and gave the ball to Mike Trout, who has season tickets just behind one end zone. Like Trout needs another souvenir for his trophy case.

    Packers 44, Jets 38 OT— Late in this game, with Jets leading 35-20, I turned to guy next to me and said, “Can you believe a team led by Aaron Rodgers is going to go 0-8 on the road?” Well, not so fast, my friend.

    Green Bay still trailed 35-23 with 7:00 left, but actually took a 38-35 lead before Jets tied game with 0:17 left- Rodgers ended things with a TD pass to Devante Adams in OT.

    Jets lost eight of last nine games, but rookie QB Darnold threw for 341 yards and three TD’s. Gang Green averaged 8.7 yards/pass attempt, ran a kick back for a TD, but still lost.

    Packers are 20-42 on third down their last three games.

    Cowboys 27, Buccaneers 20— Tampa Bay is 5-10 this season; they lost seven of their last nine games, lost their last seven road games after winning opener 48-40 in the Superdome.

    — In their five wins, Buccaneers are +4 in turnovers.
    — In their ten losses, Buccaneers are -22 in turnovers.

    If you had to make the call, would you pay Jameis Winston $20M a year to be the face of your franchise going forward, or would you move on to someone else? It is an interesting decision.

    Dallas wins NFC East, will probably host Seattle in their first playoff game; they’ve won six of last seven games, finished 7-1 at home in the regular season.

    Patriots 24, Bills 12— New England catches a huge break when the Texans lost in Philly; now the Patriots are the #2 seed in AFC and need only to beat the Jets next week for a first round bye.

    Change in tactics for NE with WR Josh Gordon suspended by the NFL; Patriots ran ball 47 times for 273 yards, throwing only 25 passes. Teams combined to connect 5-25 on third down; both teams turned ball over three times.

    Patriots are 33-4 in their last 37 games vs Buffalo; must be nice to have six games every freakin’ year against Jets-Bills-Miami.

    Falcons 24, Panthers 10— Carolina lost last seven games (1-6 vs spread); backup QB Heinecke got KO’d for a while from his first NFL start but came back later. Even less experienced #3 QB Allen came in and was 4-4 passing for 38 yards.

    — Carolina ran 84 plays for 436 yards; they scored 7 points on four red zone drives.
    — Atlanta ran 48 plays for 427 yards; their two 2nd half TD’s were on plays of 75-44 yards.

    Panthers turned ball over four times (-2) on 11 drives; rough end to their season- they’ve lost six of their last seven games with Atlanta.

    Jaguars 17, Dolphins 7— Looked like Jacksonville knew the Dolphins’ play calls before Miami did; several times when the Dolphins tried misdirection, there was a Jaguar standing waiting for it, and one of those plays resulted in a crucial turnover.

    Officials in this game might need rotator cuff surgery from throwing so many flags; both teams were called for 10 accepted penalties. Subtract penalty yardage and Jacksonville won yardage battle, but by 147-88 margin. This was an ugly game played in perfect weather.

    Dolphins are 7 for their last 37 on third down; Ryan Tannehill is in his 6th year as an NFL QB; his career W-L record is 42-45. If I was a Miami fan, I’d be an unhappy human, with him as my team’s franchise quarterback- he was a WR until his junior year in college.

    Colts 28, Giants 27— Indy is now 9-6 after starting season 1-5; they play Tennessee on Sunday night, in what is a play-in game for the #6 seed and likely a trip to LA to play the Chargers in the first round of the playoffs. Steelers’ loss in New Orleans opened the door for that to happen.

    Jets and Giants both led 14-0 Sunday, and both lost; Giants finish season 6-1 vs spread as road underdogs. Six of their last seven games went over the total.

    Vikings 27, Lions 9— On their first four series, Minnesota ran 12 plays for five yards, and trailed 9-0, even though Detroit was putrid in the red zone. On the last play of the first half, Vikings completed a 44-yard Hail Mary for a TD that gave Minnesota the lead- Detroit never scored again.

    Vikings are the #6-seed in NFC right now; they play the Bears next week, while the Eagles are in Washington. This was Minnesota’s first win in their last four road games.

    After going 36-28 in four years under Jim Caldwell, Detroit is 5-10 this year, proving that just because you know Tom Brady doesn’t mean you can win NFL games without him.

    Browns 26, Bengals 18— Cleveland was eliminated from playoff hunt, but they’ve won five of last six games- Browns play Baltimore next week while trying for a winning season, a pretty big accomplishment for a team that was 4-44 the last three years. Backdoor cover here for Bengals; they trailed 23-0 after third quarter, but Cincinnati scored couple of TD’s in the last 5:00 to beat the spread.

    Bengals lost six of last seven games overall but they covered five of last six games as underdogs vs divisional rival Cleveland.

    Rams 31, Cardinals 9— Rams ran ball for 269 yards as they moved to 12-3 and got within one game of clinching a first round bye in playoffs- they won their two games vs Arizona this year by a combined score of 65-9. LA won in Glendale for 4th year in a row, even though Todd Gurley sat this game out with a knee problem. CJ Anderson was signed by the Rams on Tuesday, but ran ball for 167 yards and a touchdown.

    In their last three games, Cardinals were outrushed 606-225.

    Bears 14, 49ers 9— Chicago won/covered eight of its last nine games, are 3-3 SU on road, 2-3 as road favorite; they can still get first round bye if they win and Rams loss to San Francisco in the LA Coliseum. Otherwise, they’ll probably play either Vikings/Eagles in first playoff game.

    Four of Chicago’s last five games stayed under the total; under is 6-3 in 49ers’ last nine games.
    Last edited by StarDust Bum; 12-24-2018 at 08:39 PM.

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