NFL Picks Against The Spread: Huge Favorites Dominate Holiday Slate
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You don’t see this every day: Nine teams in 16 games are favored by a touchdown or more this Thanksgiving weekend.
Included in the group are the Kansas City Chiefs, who scored a measly nine points against the New York Giants in their last game. Now, they’re favored by 10 over the Buffalo Bills. It’s hard to get excited about either team these days. But 10 points? The Chiefs are 1-4 against the spread (ATS) in their last five games. The Bills are 1-4-1 in their last six.
Three teams are close to two-touchdown favorites — New England, Pittsburgh, and Philadelphia. This could be one crazy weekend in the NFL. Enjoy the holiday!
*VGB’s Week 11 record against the spread: 7-6-1
There are no more bye weeks for any team during the regular season. Here are the Week 12 picks against the spread for all 16 games (odds provided by bovada.lv).
No Way Vikings Yank Keenum Now
Minnesota at Detroit — Backup quarterback Case Keenum has done a great job for the Vikings (8-2) this year, now they want to replace him with Teddy Bridgewater? Seriously? Bridgewater hasn’t played in almost two years. He may be the quarterback of the future, but not this season. Keenum deserves to see how far he can take the Vikings. The Lions (6-4) have won their last four games on Thanksgiving Day.
VGB’s pick — Minnesota (-3), Under (45)
Cowboys Can’t Score Without Zeke
Los Angeles Chargers at Dallas — Without Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys (5-5) are a .500 team at best and certainly not headed for the playoffs. They’ve scored 16 points in their last two games — both losses. The Chargers (4-6) have won four of their last six and now appear in the race for the AFC West title, which has become arguably the worst division in the NFL. They are also 5-1 ATS in those six games.
VGB’s pick — Los Angeles Chargers (Pick), Over (48)
Giants Have Scored 57 Points In Last Four
New York Giants at Washington — Kirk Cousins had a great game. Rookie Samaje Perine had a career game. And the Redskins (4-6) still managed to blow a 15-point fourth-quarter lead in New Orleans. That won’t happen here, not against the Giants (2-8), who have scored 57 points in their last four games. Both teams are 4-6 against the spread. These longtime rivals meet again at the end of the season.
VGB’s pick — Washington (-7.5), Over (45)
Tough Pick Between Two Slumping Teams
Buffalo at Kansas City — The Chiefs (6-4) started the year off 5-0 and looked like serious Super Bowl contenders. Now, they’ve lost four of their last five and look more like the Cleveland Browns. Kansas City scored nine points against one of the worst teams in the league last weekend. Now that’s bad. What’s worse, however, are the Bills (5-5). All of a sudden, they have no QB or defense and they’ve given up 135 points in their last three games.
VGB’s pick — Kansas City (-10), Under (46)
Biggest Point Spread Of The Week
Miami at New England — The biggest spread of the week is offered here between these two longtime division rivals. The Patriots (8-2) are the favorites to repeat as Super Bowl champs. The Dolphins (4-6) are favored to get a Top 10 draft pick. The Patriots, winners of six straight, have won their last two by 50 points. They are 6-4 ATS. The Dolphins, who have lost four straight, are 0-3-2 ATS in their last five.
VGB’s pick — New England (-17), Over (48)
Eagles Average 32 Points A Game
Chicago at Philadelphia — Their defense will keep the Bears (3-7) in the game. The problem is that their offense rarely scores, averaging just over 17 points a game. The Bears are 1-7 against NFC teams and losers of their last three. The Eagles (9-1) average 32 points a game and have won eight straight. They are 5-0 at home and 8-2 ATS. The Bears will need to score at least two touchdowns to cover in this game.
VGB’s pick — Philadelphia (-14), Under (44)
Titans Need Win To Remain In Playoff Hunt
Tennessee at Indianapolis — Four Marcus Mariota interceptions spelled disaster for the Titans (6-4) last week against Pittsburgh. He will need to step up his game against a division rival in the Colts (3-7). The Titans have won four of their last five, but are 1-3-1 ATS in that stretch. The Colts have lost four of their last five, but are 3-0 ATS in their last three. The Titans must win this game to keep pace with Jacksonville.
VGB’s pick — No line due to injuries.
Panthers Unbeaten Against AFC Teams
Carolina at New York Jets — Even though their records are vastly different, this game is not a pushover for the Panthers (7-3). The Jets (4-6) are 6-3-1 ATS and only have a -21 point differential. The Panthers, winners of three straight, are 4-1 on the road and undefeated in three games against AFC teams. The Jets are winless in two tries against NFC rivals. They’ve also lost four of their last five.
VGB’s pick — Carolina (-5), Over (40)
Division Rivals Have Each Won Two Straight
Tampa Bay at Atlanta — Neither team has won a divisional game this season — the Falcons (6-4) are 0-1, while the Bucs (4-6) are 0-2. Both teams have won two straight. The Falcons, who have played four of their last five games on the road, have two games left with New Orleans and one with Carolina. Atlanta was also 6-4 at this time last year before they made their big run to the Super Bowl.
VGB’s pick — Atlanta (-10), Under (49)
Browns Average Just 15 Points A Game
Cleveland at Cincinnati — The statistics aren’t pretty. The Browns (0-10) are just 2-8 ATS. This is the seventh time this year they have been an underdog by a touchdown or more. Cleveland averages 15 points a game, which is last in the league. They are 29th in points allowed. The last time these two met in Week 4, the Bengals (4-6) won 31-7. Cincinnati has won four of its last seven.
VGB’s pick — Cincinnati (-8), Over (38)
Seahawks Must Beat Lowly Division Rivals
Seattle at San Francisco — This is a dangerous game. The Seahawks (6-4) are playing very much like Kansas City these days. They’ve lost two of their last three, and that defense doesn’t scare anyone anymore. Their running game consists of quarterback Russell Wilson. One or two big hits and Seattle’s season would be over. The 49ers (1-9) are 2-4 ATS in their last six, but they finally won a game.
VGB’s pick — No line due to injuries.
Saints Not Favored For A Change
New Orleans at Los Angeles Rams — For the second week in a row, the Rams (7-3) are involved in the game of the week. They’re hoping this result is much better than the last where they got crushed in Minnesota. This is the first time in eight games the Saints (8-2) have not been favored. They have won eight straight, they’re 4-1 on the road and 6-1 against NFC opponents. Both teams are 6-4 ATS.
VGB’s pick — New Orleans (+2.5), Under (53.5)
Broncos Winless On Road This Season
Denver at Oakland — The entire AFC West has been a major disappointment this season, not just the Raiders (4-6) and Broncos (3-7). Both of these teams have losing records against AFC opponents and against the spread. Oakland is 3-6-1 ATS, while Denver is 2-7-1. The Broncos have also lost six in a row where they’ve been outscored 185-75. Now, they hit the road where they are winless in four tries.
VGB’s pick — Oakland (-5), Over (43.5)
Outstanding Defense Fuels Jaguars
Jacksonville at Arizona — Just like the Vikings, the Jaguars (7-3) are winning with one of the best defenses in the league. They should make the playoffs this season, considering they play teams with losing records in four of their last six games. Here’s one of them. The Cardinals (4-6) have lost two in a row and are now on their third quarterback. That’s never a recipe for success in this passer-friendly league.
VGB’s pick — Jacksonville (-5), Under (38)
This Could Have Been A Great Game
Green Bay at Pittsburgh — It doesn’t get any better than Packers and Steelers on Sunday night, unless, of course, Aaron Rodgers is injured. Now, we have to endure 60 minutes of Brett Hundley, who managed to lead the Packers (5-5) to zero points at home last weekend. Roethlisberger and the
Steelers (8-2) seem to be getting better every week. They have a lot of home games in the last month-and-a-half of the season.
VGB’s pick — Pittsburgh (-14), Over (41.5)
Ravens Beat Teams With Losing Records
Houston at Baltimore — The Ravens (5-5) are in the hunt for a wild-card spot. They’re good at beating teams with losing records — 5-1, in fact, in record and against the spread. Now, they meet the Texans (4-6) who are playing without rookie sensation Deshaun Watson. If the trend holds, the Ravens should win by more than seven points. The Ravens are 5-4-1 ATS, while the Texans are 1-3 and 2-2 ATS without Watson.
VGB’s pick — Baltimore (-7), Over (38)