NFL betting breakdown: week 16
BREAKDOWN OF NFL BETS
Scott Kellen, SixthSenseSports.com, @SixthSenseNFL
Buccaneers (10-4) at Panthers (5-9)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Bucs -10, 43
To analyse: Carolina brought Tom Brady out of the 9-0 home loss to the Saints last week. But Tampa Bay is hampered by wide receiver Chris Godwin out for the season, linebacker Lavonte David and running back Leonard Fournette in the injured reserve, and wide receiver Mike Evans (hamstrings) and goaltender Antoine Winfield ( foot) absent this week. The Bucs will welcome the return of wide Antonio Brown.
In numbers : Carolina did not fare well as a home underdog under coach Matt Rhule, losing 23 to Tampa Bay last season and 26-18 to teams that made the playoffs. . … The Panthers are 23rd in the NFL in sack percentage allowed, and the Bucs are third in generating pressure.
Take: Boucaniers 33, Panthères 17
Giants (4-10) vs. Eagles (7-7)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Eagles -10, 40½
To analyse: The Giants have lost three games in a row and haven’t been competitive. They are hampered at the quarterback and receiver. New York’s last victory was 13-7 at home against the Eagles. Philadelphia has won four of its last five games, with all four wins in double digits. The loss was for the Giants.
In numbers : The Giants are on a 1-7 under streak, and this game also points to the under. … By my metrics, Philadelphia is second in the NFL in rushing offense, and the Giants are 25th in running defense.
Take: Eagles 22, Giants 16
Chargers (8-6) at Texans (3-11)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Chargers -10½, 46
To analyse: The Chargers are the sixth seed in the AFC playoff race, but must keep winning to advance to the playoffs. They have been affected by COVID and will miss key players. Los Angeles won’t get any sympathy from Houston, which could go without 13 starters due to COVID.
In numbers : As a home underdog by seven or more points this season, Houston has lost by 20, 31, 16, 3 and 15 points. … Against five good offensives similar to the Chargers, the Texans allowed an average of 34 points.
Take: Chargers 31, Texans 13
Lions (2-11-1) vs. Falcons (6-8)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Falcons -6½, 42½
To analyse: The Lions will look for a back-to-back, three-of-four victory after the Cardinals’ home loss last week. The Lions have played a tough schedule, facing just one team with a loss record in the Bears. The Falcons haven’t been great, but they’re 4-1 against the worst teams they’ve faced.
In numbers : Atlanta ranks as my No. 30 offense and No. 31 defense, so asking this team to win by touchdown might be overkill.
Take: Falcons 17, Lions 13
Ravens (8-6) vs. Bengals (8-6)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Bengals -3, 45
To analyse: A loss for the Ravens would almost end their chances of winning the division. The Baltimore high school remains beaten with cornerback Tavon Young now in concussion protocol. The Ravens miss their four season opener in high school and face reservist injuries. This could be important, as Cincinnati is seventh in the league in passing 20 yards or more and the Ravens are in 31st in big passing.
In numbers : The Bengals are 6-2 in home games started by Joe Burrow against teams 0.500 or better, with all eight games scoring 47 points or more.
Take: Bengals 28, Ravens 27
Rams (10-4) vs. Vikings (7-7)
Time: 10 a.m., KVVU-5
Line / total: Rams -3, 49
To analyse: Vikings running back Dalvin Cook will miss the game after testing positive for COVID-19. The Rams are starting to recover many of their players from COVID, with tight end Tyler Higbee and security Jordan Fuller the biggest names yet to be taken off the list. Minnesota must win to stay in the playoff race, and the Rams are chasing the NFC West title.
In numbers : The Vikings qualify for a trend which is 75-40-1 ATS: Home underdogs without a division in a road win against road favorites in a home win. … As a road favorite under coach Sean McVay, Los Angeles has averaged 27 points against above-average infractions and 30 points per game this season.
Take: Vikings 27, Rams 26
Jaguars (2-12) vs. Jets (3-11)
Time: 10:00 a.m.
Line / total: Jets -2, 41½
To analyse: Both teams must see this as a chance to win against another equally horrific team. The Jets have 15 players and coach Robert Saleh on the COVID roster.
In numbers : Jacksonville has lost 15 straight road games. … The Jaguars are 5-1 on the road.
Take: Jaguar 21, Jet 18
Tickets (8-6) vs. Patriots (9-5)
Time: 10 a.m., KLAS-8
Line / total: Patriots -2, 43½
To analyse: AFC East is online. A loss for the Bills would essentially knock them out of a possible Division title and hurt their playoff chances. Both teams played relatively easy schedules, so we should know a lot about each team in which numbers to be a close game. Players with COVID include Buffalo wide Cole Beasley and New England wide receiver Kendrick Bourne.
In numbers : Bills QB Josh Allen is 10-4-1 ATS as a road underdog. Only two of those 15 games resulted in a loss of more than seven points, so a Buffalo teaser might be a good play.… The Bills are 4-0 as an underdog on the road.
Take: Patriots 24, Bills 21
Bear (4-10) to Seahawks (5-9)
Time: 1:05 p.m.
Line / total: Seahawks -6½, 42½
To analyse: Chicago dominated Monday’s game against the Vikings, but erred after error en route to a 17-9 loss. Now, Bears are affected by players on the COVID list.
In numbers : The Bears are 8-2 ATS as the road underdogs against non-playoff teams that finished under 0.500. … Seattle is 3-10 ATS as a home favorite of six points or more.
Take: Seahawks 30, bear 23
Steelers (7-6-1) vs. Chiefs (10-4)
Line / total: Heads -8½, 45
To analyse: The Chiefs aim to clinch the No.1 seed in the AFC. Pittsburgh needs a win to stay in the playoff race. The Chiefs could be affected by players on the COVID roster, but they have secured the return of star defensive tackle Chris Jones and cornerback Charvarius Ward, and cornerback L’Jarius Sneed is also back after facing to a death in his family.
In numbers : Kansas City is fourth in my running standings and Pittsburgh is No. 23 in running defense. … The Chiefs are on a 14-5 streak under the home favorites by seven points or more. … Kansas City has allowed 17 points or less in seven of its last nine games, including five back-to-back home games.
Take: Chefs 24, Steelers 17
Broncos (7-7) vs. Raiders (7-7)
Time: 13:25, KLAS-8
Line / total: Choose, 41½
To analyse: Both teams are fighting to stay alive in the playoff race and cannot afford another loss. Drew Lock will start as Denver quarterback. Both teams are facing COVID issues.
In numbers : The Raiders have scored 16 points or less in six of their last seven games. … Denver has allowed 17 points or less in six of its last eight games.
Take: Broncos 21, Raiders 20
Cowboys (10-4) football team (6-8)
Time: 5:20 p.m., KSNV-3
Line / total: Cowboys -10, 47
To analyse: Washington is on life support for the playoffs. Safety Landon Collins will miss the game and cornerback William Jackson is questionable, putting the football team’s defense against Dallas’ powerful passing game at a disadvantage. The Cowboys are almost perfectly healthy, with the exception of left tackle Tyron Smith, returning home after three straight road games.
In numbers : My measurements make Dallas the No. 8 passing offense in the NFL, and Washington is ranked No. 31 in passing defense. … With Dak Prescott as quarterback, the Cowboys have scored 31 or more points in 13 of their last 17 home games. … The football team are 1-4-1 ATS as a road underdog by more than four points.
Take: Cowboys 33, football team 16
Dolphins (7-7) to Saints (7-7)
Time: 5:15 p.m. Monday, ESPN
Line / total: Dolphins -2½, 37½
To analyse: QB rookie Ian Book is set to start for the Saints after Taysom Hill and Trevor Siemian hit the COVID list. Miami has only played one road game since October 31. It turned out to be a much tougher matchup for the Dolphins than their recent streak against the Giants, Panthers, Texans and Jets twice.
In numbers : The Saints qualify for a trend which is 19-55-6 ATS and applies to teams with a 0.250 or higher win percentage after an outright win as an underdog by more than 10 points. … Miami had limited five consecutive opponents to 17 points or less before giving the Jets 24 last week. … The Saints have only given up nine points in their last two games.
Take: Dolphins 17, Saints 13