Falcons -3 vs Vikings: I have these teams even in my power ratings so I think the spread is right. I side with the Falcons though who really need this game to maintain their position in the playoff race and stay within striking distance of the Saints for the NFC South. The Vikings put a stranglehold on the NFC North with their win on Thanksgiving Day so this isn’t as important of a game for Minnesota. My only concerns are that the Vikings had more rest and time to prepare for this game, and the Falcons host the Saints on Thursday in Week 14. If you agree with the Falcons, I would wait a little bit to see if this goes down to -2.5 or you could just take the moneyline at around -145.
Seahawks +6 vs Eagles: It’s scary to step in front of the Eagles but this line is too inflated. If this game was on a neutral field, I think that the line would be around six. This game is in Seattle and they have one of the best home field advantages despite their team being down. The game is also at night so the crowd should be even louder. Along with the line value, I like the Seahawks as an underdog in a game they need to win.
Lions +3 vs Ravens: I think the line is right but the Lions have an edge with 10 days to prepare for this game and the Ravens coming off a Monday night game. Baltimore’s offense won’t be able to expose Detroit’s struggling defense and Matthew Stafford is much better than most of the quarterbacks the Ravens have faced. Continue reading
Saints (+3) over Texans
Steelers (+5) over Seahawks
Broncos (+3) over Patriots
This game is six days away but I think the best line is available now if you want the underdog. The Seahawks are currently a five-point home favorite against the Steelers, who are coming off a bye week. I think the line is too big and the Steelers are equal to the Seahawks on a neutral field.
The reason why I’m taking this game early is because of the injury status of Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch. If he is announced out for this game, the line will drop whether it’s justified or not. Thomas Rawls showed he is a capable backup in Week 11 but the public will like the Steelers more with a star running back out. Don’t wait on this one and take Pittsburgh.
Pick: Steelers (+5) over Seahawks
Falcons (-7) over Buccaneers
Steelers (pick ’em) over Bengals
Giants (+3.5) over Saints
Cowboys (+6) over Seahawks
Broncos (+3) over Packers
Have two picks in the NFL this week:
Seahawks (+3) over Bengals
Cardinals (-2.5) over Lions
This season’s Super Bowl reminds me of the same situation last year. The Seahawks needed good fortune to sneak out a home win the NFC Championship against San Francisco. This year they were on the right result of a Packers collapse but Seattle was unimpressive for 55 minutes. Last year the Broncos dominated the Patriots in the AFC Championship Game. Two weeks ago New England defeated Indianapolis in even more convincing fashion.
I remember the day after Seattle and Denver advanced, I strongly leaned towards taking the Broncos in the Super Bowl. I overreacted to what I saw from one weekend of games and my initial thoughts favored Denver. The point spread for this Super Bowl also reacted to what happened in Championship Weekend. If I remember correctly, Denver went from about a field goal underdog to a field goal favorite in the days following their AFC Championship win. The more I thought about it the more I started to like the Seahawks because they were the better defense and there was line value. I ended up picking Seattle and got that game right even though I didn’t predict a blowout.
This year I had the same thoughts after the Patriots and Seahawks advanced. I was leaning towards the Patriots especially if they were going to be a three-point underdog, which was the line before Championship Weekend. Just like in 2014 the line moved in the Patriots favor and now they are the favorites. When the line moved so much I changed by opinion and started to heavily favor Seattle. I’m going to pick Seattle for this game and here is what I think will happen in the game:
Packers at Seahawks -7.5
The only question in this game is how healthy is Aaron Rodgers? The Packers quarterback looked more comfortable as the game went on against Dallas but the Seahawks defense is much stronger the the Cowboys. I think there is a slight overreaction to this line with the Rodgers injury but don’t feel comfortable picking against Seattle at home. I would pass on picking this game but like the following props:
Aaron Rodgers UNDER 260.5 total passing yards: I think the Packers are going to run the ball early to make sure their defense stays off the field. Rodgers is banged up and the Seahawks have an elite secondary.
James Starks OVER 15.5 total rushing yards: This is a little risky because Starks is the backup but I think the Packers will need to use two running backs if they want to run the ball. Eddie Lacy was limited in practice earlier this week so there’s a better chance of Starks getting touches.
Marshawn Lynch OVER 87.5 total rushing yards: The Packers defense allowed 123 yards to an injured Demarco Murray last round. Lynch has 110 yards on 20 carries against the Packers in Week 1. Expect Lynch to have another 20+ carry, 100+ yard outing.
Luke Wilson OVER 27.5 total receiving yards and OVER 2.5 receptions: The Packers allowed six receptions and 71 yards to Jason Witten last week. I don’t trust the Seahawks wide receivers and Wilson is becoming a bigger part of Seattle’s offense.