Your Ultimate NFL Week 15 Betting Guide: Tips, Picks, Strategies for Every Game

Your Ultimate NFL Week 15 Betting Guide: Tips, Picks, Strategies for Every Game article feature image
Credit:

Quinn Harris, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Jared Goff

  • If you're looking for comprehensive betting and fantasy football previews for every Week 15 game, you've come to the right place.
  • Our experts cover trends, sharp action, fantasy football sleepers and make the case for a few bets.

All odds as of Friday afternoon. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NFL odds and track your bets.


Betting odds: Miami Dolphins at Minnesota Vikings

  • Spread: Vikings -7.5
  • Over/Under: 44.5
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: Though some books opened this game up in the -8 range, the line dropped to the key number of 7 for a while before bumping up to 7.5.

The line even dropped to 6.5 on a couple of occasions, but it appears sharp bettors like the Vikes if they don’t need to lay a touchdown. Miami is getting around 40% of bets and dollars (see live data here). — Mark Gallant

Trends to know: The Dolphins are coming off a 34-33 win over the Patriots as 8.5-point underdogs. Oddsmakers aren’t giving Miami much credit for their miracle win.

In the past five seasons, teams that won their previous game as a touchdown or greater underdog and then are getting 7 or more points in their next game have gone 1-18 straight up and 4-15 against the spread, per our Bet Labs data. — John Ewing

Miami (7-6) has a winning record but a negative point differential (-55). Since 2003, teams with a winning record but the pythagorean win% of a losing team, like the Dolphins, have gone 119-152-12 (44%) ATS. — John Ewing

The Dolphins are in a unique spot after the “Miami Miracle.” Since 2011, 17 teams have defeated the Patriots at home in the regular season. Those teams have gone 5-12 straight up and 3-14 ATS in their next game. — Evan Abrams

Under Mike Zimmer, Minnesota is 13-3 ATS (81.3%), when playing at home off a straight up loss, covering the spread by 6.8 points per game. Bettors have profited 9.2 units under Zimmer in that span, making him the most profitable coach in the NFL in this spot. — Evan Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs vs. Miami’s pass defense

Let’s be real: Thielen and Diggs are mismatches pretty much every time they step out on the field.

The real talking point here is whether the Vikings will be able to exploit those mismatches now that they’ve canned former offensive coordinator John DeFilipo.

Contrary to the popular narrative and the viewpoint of Zimmer, DeFilipo was correct in not running the ball more.

The Vikings are tied for 26th in yards per carry on early downs (4.07) and 31st in first-down rate on early-down rushes (16.9%), but they’re 14th in net yard per pass on early downs (6.95) and 13th in first-down rate on early-down passes (33.6%) — not to mention, the correlation between early-down rush attempt rate and point differential has been slightly negative this season.

Harrison Barden, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Adam Thielen

Where DeFilipo truly erred was in letting his team’s inability to run the ball curb his play-action usage and deep shots, as Cousins’ 18.6% play-acton rate and 10.3% deep passing rates rank 30th and 27th, respectively.

But this is not the time to change course. Not only do the Dolphins rank nine spots better in DVOA vs. the run (17th) than the pass (26th), but they’re also 29th in short-passing DVOA and 31st in yards per pass allowed on early downs (8.09).

The Dolphins won’t have an answer for Diggs when they go man if Xavien Howard (knee) sits out; Howard is ranked 22nd in Pro Football Focus’ cornerback coverage grades while Minkah Fitzpatrick ranks 73rd and Torrey McTyer ranks 110th. In the slot, Thielen will draw either Fitzpatrick or Bobby McCain (98th).

If it’s more rushing attempts Zimmer wants, newly appointed offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski needs to keep his boss happy with rushes of the late-game variety that come about because the team is ahead, and not fall into the trap of establishing the run on early downs against a defense that’s more vulnerable to the pass.

If Minnesota gets behind the chains, there’s no doubt Miami and future opponents will copy Seattle’s formula of doubling both Thielen and Diggs and forcing Cousins to beat them with one of his other receivers, which he hasn’t proven capable of doing this season. — Chris Raybon

Which team is healthier? Vikings

The only key players the Vikings could be without include left tackle Mike Remmers (lower back), defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson (hip) and linebacker Eric Kendricks (rib).

The Dolphins aren’t quite so lucky, as right tackle Ja’Waun James (quad), safety T.J. McDonald (ankle), left tackle Laremy Tunsil (knee) and No. 1 cornerback Xavien Howard (knee) should be considered questionable for Sunday.

The likes of DeVante Parker (shoulder), Kenyan Drake (shoulder) and Ryan Tannehill (right shoulder, ankle) are expected to suit up despite practicing in a limited fashion all week.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The Vikings defense matches up well with the Dolphins since the Vikings rank eighth in pressure rate and second in adjusted sack rate.

Meanwhile, the Dolphins have the sixth-lowest scoring rate, and their offensive line ranks 28th in adjusted sack rate.

Historically, home-favorite defenses with comparable spreads to the Dolphins-Vikings game have averaged a +1.44 FanDuel Plus/Minus (per the FantasyLabs Trends tool).

The Vikings are a better value on FanDuel where they have an 82% Bargain Rating. — Justin Bailey

Bet to watch: Dolphins-Vikings Under 44.5

Zimmer just fired his offensive coordinator for not running the ball enough, and as I alluded to earlier, any type of renewed commitment to the run could actually result in a less explosive attack for Minnesota.

Miami is the fifth-worst team at preventing opponents from gaining passing first downs on early downs but fifth-best at doing so against the run.

On the other side of the ball, you have a Miami team that runs at the sixth-highest rate on early downs facing a Vikings defense that stops the run and plays good situational football, ranking first in both third-down and red-zone conversion rate. — Chris Raybon


Betting odds: Dallas Cowboys at Indianapolis Colts

  • Spread: Colts -3
  • Over/Under: 47.5
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

Betting market: This is a polarizing game for both bettors and bookmakers. At the time of writing, Dallas is commanding a bit more than half the bets at 54%, but Indy is getting 64% of the money (see live betting data here).

Most books have moved the line to Cowboys +3 and I can’t imagine it will go past the key number of 3 to 3.5, so if you’re waiting for Dallas plus the hook, you should probably just bet it at +3 or not bet it at all. — Mark Gallant

Trends to know: A majority of spread tickets are on the Cowboys, who are on a five-game winning streak. In Andrew Luck’s career, he is 16-10-2 against the spread when getting fewer than 50% of bets, including 7-3-1 ATS when at home. — John Ewing

For the fifth time in 2018, Luck and the Colts face a top-notch defense. The Cowboys are allowing 18.9 PPG, which is second in the league behind the Ravens.

In Luck’s career, he is 14-4 (77.8%, +9 units) ATS when facing defenses that average fewer than 20 PPG allowed. He is the most profitable quarterback in this spot since 2012, per our Bet Labs data. — Evan Abrams

Did you know? The Dallas Cowboys have won three consecutive games straight up and ATS, but their average margin of victory is less than a touchdown. — Evan Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Red-zone production

While both defenses have been pretty solid at limiting touchdowns in the red zone, the Colts have been significantly better at punching it in than the Cowboys — thanks to superior play-calling and a wide variety of viable targets — especially at the tight end position.

In fact, the Colts lead the league with 19 tight end touchdowns, while the Cowboys have just one.

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Amari Cooper celebrates. Credit: Tim Heitman, USA TODAY Sports

Dallas ranks 30th in the NFL in red zone TD% at 46.34%. And if you think the signing of Amari Cooper has helped address that problem, you’d be mistaken. Over their past three games, the Cowboys have scored touchdowns on just 33.3% of their trips inside the 20. That’s worst in the league over that span.

Conversely, Indianapolis’ offense has had no such issues, ranking seventh in the NFL with a 68% red zone TD percentage. The Colts have been even better in Indy, where they have the third-highest home red zone TD percentage (78.26%), trailing only Pittsburgh and and Atlanta. — Stuckey

Which team is healthier? Cowboys

Both teams are still banged up, but a bit healthier than we’ve grown used to seeing.

The Cowboys could welcome back wide receiver Tavon Austin (groin) and stud linebacker Sean Lee (hamstring), but face question marks with right guard Zack Martin (knee), defensive tackle David Irving (ankle) and tight end Geoff Swaim (wrist).

The good news is left tackle Tyron Smith (neck) and Ezekiel Elliott (shoulder) are fully expected to play.

The largest question marks for the Colts include wide receiver T.Y. Hilton (ankle), safety Malik Hooker (hip) and center Ryan Kelly (knee).

Statuses from backup tight end Mo Alie-Cox (calf), safety Mike Mitchell (calf), right guard Mark Glowinski (ankle) and defensive tackle Margus Hunt (knee) will also be worth monitoring.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: Since joining the Cowboys, Amari Cooper is garnering 25.5% for the Cowboys, and his 8.8 targets per game leads all receivers on the Cowboys by at least 2.8 targets per game.

The Colts defense is subpar, ranking 18th in pass DVOA, and more importantly, it has below average pass-rush, ranking 23rd in Pro Football Focus’ pass-rushing grades and 21st in adjusted sack rate.

Cooper’s +5.02 Projected Plus/Minus on FanDuel leads all receivers in the FantasyLabs Player Models for the main slat. — Justin Bailey

Bet to watch: Colts -3

Defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus will be a huge asset for the Colts this weekend, as he previously served as the Cowboys’ linebackers coach from 2011-17, including the role as passing-game coordinator the previous two seasons.

He should be very familiar with the strengths, weakness and tendencies of the Cowboys defensive personnel — particularly at linebacker, which the Colts can exploit with their efficient short-passing attack.

This is a tough spot for the Cowboys to go on the road after an enormous win over their rival that essentially clinched the NFC East title.

It’s time to sell Dallas here after five straight wins, all of which came by one possession, with the last three coming at home. — Stuckey

Bet to watch: Colts -3

The first metric I look at for the team playing the Cowboys: Rushing defense. Indianapolis ranks fifth in Football Outsiders’ DVOA metric and sixth in yards per rush.

If you want to get real fancy, the Colts are third in a metric called Stuffed Rate, which measures how often a defense tackles a running back at or behind the line of scrimmage.

Dallas runs the ball at the fourth-highest rate of any team on first down (36.7%), and the Colts have the defense to turn those early down rushes into losses.

On the offensive side, Indy’s stellar line should be able to keep Andrew Luck upright (fourth in adjusted sack rate allowed) against a Cowboys defense that is much better to attack through the air (12th in DVOA) than on the ground (fourth).

Luck and Hilton have shined when playing at home together, and I expect that to continue in a game the Colts will be far more motivated to win.

Dallas has a 99.5% chance to make the playoffs, according to our simulations, while Indy needs a win to keep pace with the Ravens for the wild card. — Scott T. Miller


Betting odds: Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears

  • Spread: Bears -6
  • Over/Under: 45
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

Betting market: Following their big win against the Rams, close to 60% of the public is taking the Bears. But 56% of the money is on the Packers, and it looks like sharp bettors grabbed the Packers +6.5 at the few spots where it was available (click here for updated odds).

The under is getting overwhelming support with 90% of the money so far, causing the total to drop from 46.5 to 45. — Mark Gallant

Trends to know: This is the largest underdog spread of Aaron Rodgers’ career against an NFC North rival. Rodgers has never beaten a division team as an underdog going 0-6-1 straight up and 3-4 against the spread, according to our Bet Labs data. — John Ewing

Rodgers has faced the Bears 21 times in his career, and he is 15-6 ATS (71.4%), making Chicago his most profitable opponent for bettors, netting 8.5 units. This will be just the second time that Rodgers faces Chicago as an underdog, losing in Chicago 20-17 as a four-point underdog in 2008.

For the fourth time in his career, Rodgers enters the game with a worse SU and ATS win percentage than Bears.

In the three previous games, the Packers and Rodgers are 3-0 SU and ATS, covering the spread by 10.2 PPG, winning by at least a touchdown in each of the three games. — Evan Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Bears secondary vs. Packers wide receivers

Packers wide receiver Davante Adams is top 10 at his position, but the Bears rank first in pass DVOA overall and specifically against No. 1 wide receivers. Outside cornerbacks Prince Amukamara and Kyle Fuller are both more than capable of giving Adams all he can handle.

The 6-foot, 204-pound Amukamara matches up well with the physical Adams, and Fuller ranks as a top-five Pro Football Focus corner in coverage (90.0 grade).

Wide receiver Randall Cobb (hamstring) has struggled this season due to a lingering soft-tissue injury, and the rookie Marquez Valdes-Scantling has just 49 yards receiving over the past month. They are poor receivers in support of Adams.

The Bears are without breakout slot corner Bryce Callahan (foot, injured reserve), but utility defensive back Sherrick McManis has exhibited some promise this year in his limited work. Lining up as a box safety, outside corner and slot defender, McManis has a 90.2 PFF coverage grade on 102 defensive snaps.

With support from Eddie Jackson (PFF’s No. 1 coverage safety), McManis could do well in the slot.

As a unit, the Bears defense is No. 1 with a 94.8 PFF coverage grade, and the Packers offense is just 15th with a 74.8 receiving grade.

With quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the Packers always have the chance to produce through the air, but the Bears secondary is the best pass-defense unit the Packers wide receivers will face all year. — Matthew Freedman

Which team is healthier? Bears

The only Bears player on the injury report is wide receiver Allen Robinson (hip).

The Packers aren’t as lucky, as defensive end Kenny Clark (elbow), cornerback Bashaud Breeland (groin), left guard Lane Taylor (foot) and right tackle Bryan Bulaga (knee) should all be considered questionable for Sunday.

Starting left guard Byron Bell (knee, IR) will miss the remainder of the season, as well.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The Bears’ pressure rate (34%) and sacks per game (3.08) are top-seven marks in the field.

They’re set up well as six-point home favorites against the Packers, and they’re the only defense on the main slate with a sack projection above 3.0.

Historically, home favorite defenses with comparable sack projections have averaged a solid +1.86 Plus/Minus on FanDuel. — Justin Bailey

Bet to watch:  Packers +6

The Bears’ primetime win on Sunday night was the perfect setup for an overreaction spot in Week 15.

Not only did the Bears outperform as a three-point dog in the most-watched game of the weekend, but with that game taking place in Chicago, it left bettors with a clear takeaway that it’s hard to play in Chicago during cold months.

Historically, though, that really hasn’t been the case, at least when it comes to covering spreads. In our Bet Labs database (which dates back to 2003), the Bears are just 16-22-1 (42.1%) ATS in December and January at home.

On top of that, since the Bears have been great to their backers this season, covering by an average of five points through 13 games, they’re susceptible to seeing inflated lines this time of year.

In the last five weeks of the season, fading teams still holding a cover margin of five points has gone 124-84-6 (59.6%) ATS since 2005.

Our power ratings make this game closer to Chicago -4, so I’ll happily take the two free points and bet against the overreaction. — Danny Donahue


Betting odds: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Baltimore Ravens

  • Spread: Buccaneers -7.5
  • Over/Under: 46.5
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: The Ravens are getting six out of every 10 bets, but they don’t appear to be in the sharp variety. After opening at -8, the line has fallen to -7.5 at the majority of books (you can find updated data here).

Not the most consequential line move, but if there’s a sharp push on the Bucs plus the hook, we’ll see this drop to the key number of -7. The over is getting 50% of bets, but the total has dropped from 47.5 to 46.5. — Mark Gallant

Weather report: There’s a shot at some rain in Baltimore, though initial reports don’t seem too bad. Right now, there’s about a 50/50 shot at light rain to go along with temperatures in the upper 40s and wind speeds just shy of 10 mph.

Probably a game you’re going to want to double-check as it gets closer to kick off. — Gallant

Since 2003, 23 games have been played in Baltimore with at least 10 MPH winds, and the under is 16-7 (69.6%), profiting bettors 8.2 units, the second-most profitable stadium to the under in this span behind just FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland. — Evan Abrams

Trends to know: On paper this looks like a mismatch of defenses. Baltimore is allowing 18.5 points per game (fewest) while Tampa Bay is conceding 29.5 points per game (third-most). Not only do the Ravens have a defensive advantage, but they host the Bucs.

However, according to our Bet Labs data, when a great defensive team (20 or fewer points allowed) plays a bad defensive team (28 or more points allowed) at home, the good defense is only 57-74-3 (44%) against the spread since 2003. — John Ewing

As John noted, we have the league’s best defense in the Ravens (18.5 PPG) facing the Bucs, who have the third-worst defense (29.5 PPG). Conditions at M&T Bank Stadium Sunday are projected to be windy and raining.

Did you know? This season, the Buccaneers are 6-0 to the over when playing on the road, going over the total by 17.5 PPG.

Since 2003, only four teams have gone undefeated for a single-season (including the playoffs) either to the over or the under at home or on the road.

The last team to accomplish the feat on the road was the 2016 Cardinals, who went 8-0 to the over. The last team to finish a season undefeated to the under, was the 2003 Bills at home:

2016 Bills Home Over: 8-0
2016 Falcons Home Over: 11-0
2016 Cardinals Road Over: 8-0
2010 Cowboys Home Over: 8-0
2003 Bills Home Under: 8-0 — Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Ravens rush offense vs. Buccaneers rush defense

Dynamic first-round quarterback Lamar Jackson has been named the full-time starter by head coach John Harbaugh.

There’s nothing pretty about how Jackson has played in his four games as the starter. He’s thrown three interceptions and fumbled six times. He’s managed just 150 yards and 0.75 touchdowns passing per game. His 5.9 adjusted yards per attempt is brutal.

But as a runner, he’s dominated opponents with a 67-336-2 stat line, and he has at least 10 rushing attempts in every start.

Over the past month, with Jackson and running backs Gus Edwards and Kenneth Dixon pounding the ball, the Ravens have averaged an unreal 46.3 rushing attempts for 226.8 yards per game.

The Buccaneers are dead last in the league with a 61.8 Pro Football Focus run-defense grade, and they are without middle linebackers Kwon Alexander (knee, injured reserve) and Jack Cichy (ankle, IR).

The Ravens will likely look to control the clock with their running attack. Against a week defense, they could exceed 50 carries. — Matthew Freedman

Which team is healthier? Ravens

Lamar Jackson will start under center even with Joe Flacco (hip) healthy enough to suit up. The only Ravens players thought to be at risk of missing Sunday’s game are left guard Alex Lewis (shoulder) and safety Tony Jefferson (ankle).

The Bucs aren’t quite as lucky, as safety Justin Evans (toe), wide receiver DeSean Jackson (thumb), cornerback Carlton Davis (knee) and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (knee, hip) are far from 100% and not guaranteed to suit up Sunday.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The Ravens have asked Jimmy Smith to shadow twice since he returned from suspension in Week 5. The defense’s long-time No. 1 cornerback held up about as well as possible, as Michael Thomas (7-69-1) and Julio Jones (2-18-0) were largely held in check for most of the afternoon.

It would make sense for the rangy Smith (6-foot-2 and 211 pounds) to track Evans (6-foot-5 and 231 pounds) this Sunday. Evans has yet to surpass 100 yards or find the end zone in December, but he’s plenty capable of winning against any cornerback in the league.

He joins A.J. Green and Randy Moss as the only players to ever gain at least 1,000 receiving yards in each of their first five seasons.

Evans doesn’t belong on your fantasy bench, although it’s fair to question his upside against the Ravens’ fourth-ranked defense in pass DVOA. Neither Chris Godwin nor Adam Humphries is set up particularly well against the likes of Marlon Humphries (PFF’s No. 16 cornerback), Brandon Carr (No. 32) and Tavon Young (No. 59). — Hartitz

Bet to watch: Buccaneers +7.5

The Ravens are 7-6 on the season and sixth in the AFC playoff race entering Week 15. For Baltimore to make the playoffs, it needs to win at home against the Buccaneers on Sunday.

The public often overvalues home field advantage and must-win games for fringe playoff teams (win percentage of 50-67%) in Weeks 15-17.

Betting against teams like the Ravens in this situation has gone 118-88-5 (57%) ATS since 2003 according to our Bet Labs data. — Ewing


Betting odds: Tennessee Titans at New York Giants

  • Spread: Giants -1
  • Over/Under: 43.5
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: The public isn’t completely sold on the Giants as favorites against the Titans, but with 45% of bets at the time of writing, they’re getting a bit more support than I would have guessed (see live data here).

But the Titans are getting much more money (72%), which explains why the line dipped down to Giants -1. — Mark Gallant

Weather report: The forecast at MetLife is looking like perhaps the sloppiest of the weekend. The temperature will be hovering right around 40 degrees and chances of rain are around 70%.

In addition, winds will be averaging around 14 mph, something that, of course, favors the under. — Gallant

Trends to know: The Giants are on a winning streak. Since 2003, teams on a winning streak that have won fewer than 40% of their games, like the Giants, have gone 36-38-1 against the spread in their next game.

If that team is favored, however, the record jumps to 16-8-1 ATS, according to our Bet Labs data. — John Ewing

The Titans played on Thursday Night Football last week at home against the Jaguars and will be playing on extended rest.

In his career, Manning has faced a team coming off more than a week of rest 58 times and he is 36-20-2 ATS (64.3%), profiting bettors 14.5 units.

In the Bet Labs database, he is the most profitable quarterback in the NFL in this spot, ahead of his brother Peyton by almost two full units. — Evan Abrams

Did you know? The Titans are coming off a game where they bottled up the Jaguars’ rushing game for only 60 yards on the ground. Tennessee now faces Saquon Barkley on the road in New York.

Over the past two seasons, when Eli Manning is the quarterback and his opponent allowed fewer than 100 rushing yards in the previous game, the Giants are just 2-7 ATS, failing to cover the spread by 9.6 points per game.

Over that span, only DeShone Kizer has been a less profitable quarterback to bettors in this spot. — Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Titans secondary vs. Giants passing game

Manning has looked solid in recent matchups vs. the 49ers, Buccaneers and Redskins, but the clock might be ready to strike midnight on the Giants’ second-half fairy-tale run against the Titans’ fourth-ranked scoring defense.

Corners Adoree’ Jackson (PFF’s No. 28 overall CB) and Logan Ryan (No. 35) join safeties Kevin Byard (No. 10) and Kenny Vaccaro (No. 44) among PFF’s top-50 defensive backs at their position this season.

The Giants boast one of the week’s worst combined net yards per pass attempt rate. The potential absence of Odell Beckham (quad) would obviously exacerbate these problems. Ian Hartitz

Which team is healthier? Titans

Both teams are eerily healthy entering this Week 15 matchup. The only key Titans thought to be at risk of missing game action include No. 3 receiver Tajae Sharpe (ankle) and tight end Cole Wick (shoulder), while the Giants are only dealing with injuries to tight end Rhett Ellison (ankle) and Beckham (quad).

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Hartitz

DFS edge: The Giants haven’t asked Janoris Jenkins to shadow a wide receiver since Week 4. PFF has graded Jenkins and B.W. Webb as the league’s No. 41 and No. 64 best cornerbacks this season, respectively.

Corey Davis is more than capable of smoking them both, but we haven’t seen the Titans’ No. 1 receiver get very consistent volume over the past month.

Davis saw fewer than five targets in three of his past four games after surpassing that threshold in seven of his first nine games. Life as the No. 1 receiver on the league’s second-most pass-adverse offense has Davis as the PPR WR24 entering Week 15.

Davis costs $5,600 on DraftKings and carries a brutal 0.3-point projected floor. — Hartitz

Bet to watch: Under 43.5

Tennessee struggles on offense, ranking 23rd overall in Football Outsiders’ DVOA and just 24th in passing offense. The Giants are better at 14th overall and 16th through the air, but Beckham is reportedly expected to miss the game which should seriously handcuff New York’s explosiveness.

The Giants and Titans are also two of the slower teams in the league, ranking 19th and 25th, respectively, in situation-neutral pace.

And finally, the weather should make big plays in the passing game even more challenging as the forecast is calling for steady 14-mph winds and a decent chance of rain, specifically during the second half of the game. PJ Walsh


Betting odds: Oakland Raiders at Cincinnati Bengals

  • Spread: Bengals -3
  • Over/Under: 46
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: Not many folks wanted to lay 3.5 points on Jeff Driskel and the Bengals regardless of their opponent, as it didn’t take very long for early bettors to grab the hook and drive the line down to the key number of 3. Oakland’s support didn’t stop there, though, as more steady action dropped the line down to 2.5.

That’s when Bengals money (finally) showed up, as the spread is 3 at the time of writing. It appears bookmakers found the right number: Bets and dollars are both split almost exactly 50-50 at the time of writing (see live betting data here). — Mark Gallant

Trends to know: The Raiders are coming off their third win of the season. Under Derek Carr, the Raiders are 11-18 ATS (37.9%) after a win, failing to cover by 4.3 points per game and losing bettors 7.1 units.

Only two quarterbacks have been less profitable for bettors in this spot since the Raiders drafted Carr in 2014, Nick Foles and Marcus Mariota. — Evan Abrams

These are two of the worst defenses in the NFL. Cincinnati is allowing 30.5 PPG (32nd) and Oakland is conceding 29.8 PPG (31st). Since 2003, when two defenses meet that are allowing 28 or more points per game the over has gone 39-22 (64%). — John Ewing

Biggest mismatch: Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap vs. Raiders right tackle Brandon Parker

One of the few bright spots on the Bengals defense this season has been the steady play of the ninth-year vet Dunlap, who has 8.5 sacks, ranking 19th overall and sixth against the run in Pro Football Focus’ edge-rusher grades.

Parker has been a liability for Oakland, ranking 74th in pass blocking and 70th in run blocking. Geno Atkins is a force who warrants a fair share of attention on the inside, so expect Parker to get a lot of help from blocking tight end Lee Smith. — Chris Raybon

Which team is healthier? Raiders

The Bengals’ injury-riddled defense doesn’t appear to be any healthier entering Week 15, as linebacker Vontaze Burfict (concussion), defensive end Michael Johnson (concussion) and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick (ankle) should be considered very questionable for Sunday.

The likes of left tackle Cordy Glenn (back) and wide receiver Josh Malone (hamstring) also aren’t guaranteed to suit up.

Meanwhile, the only Raiders thought to be at risk of missing Sunday’s game are left guard Kelechi Osemele (toe), defensive tackle Maurice Hurst (ankle) and linebacker Kyle Wilber (hamstring).

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: Joe Mixon saw a season-high 26 carries and 31 total touches against the Chargers this past Sunday. With Driskel at quarterback, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Bengals continue to lean on Mixon against the Raiders on Sunday.

Mixon should be set up for success against the Raiders’ 27th-ranked defense in Football Outsiders’ rush DVOA.

You can even pair him with Tyler Boyd since they own a positive correlation of 0.30, per our FantasyLabs Player Models.

Boyd leads the Bengals with 22.5% of their market share of targets in Driskel’s two full games as their starting quarterback. The Raiders have allowed a league-high 31 passing touchdowns and rank dead last in pass DVOA.

Boyd’s price has decreased on both DraftKings and FanDuel. — Justin Bailey

Bet to watch: Raiders-Bengals over 46

I usually prefer taking the over with a pair of good quarterbacks, but the Raiders and Bengals defenses might just be bad enough to do the trick anyway.

Carr and Driskel should always be approached with extreme caution, but both offenses have exhibited enough explosiveness and consistency to warrant some optimism in this matchup.

Overall, the Raiders-Bengals’ matchup boasts top-three marks in combined explosive pass play rate and combined net yards per pass attempt.

The cherry on top? Neither defense boasts a pass rush that figures to cause much concern for either quarterback. — Ian Hartitz


Betting odds: Detroit Lions at Buffalo Bills

  • Spread: Bills -2.5
  • Over/Under: 39.5
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

Betting market: The Bills are surprisingly seeing an onslaught of cash money. The line opened at a PK, but Buffalo moved to -2.5 and briefly hit -3 before some buyback on the Lions pushed it back down to -2.5.

The over has been a very popular and sharp pick, which is also pretty surprising. With more than 70% of bets and 88% of dollars at the time of writing, the total has risen from 38 to 39.5 since opening (see live betting data here). — Mark Gallant

Trends to know: The Bills have a worse record but are the betting favorites. Since 2003, teams with a losing record favored against an opponent with more wins have gone 246-214-14 (54%) against the spread, including 163-136-11 (55%) ATS when facing a non-divisional opponent. — John Ewing

What a bad spot this is for Matthew Stafford and the Lions…

Detroit defeated Arizona, 17-3, last week for its third double-digit win of the season. In Stafford’s career, he has played 25 games coming off a double-digit win, and he is 7-16-2 ATS (30.4%), failing to cover the spread by 4.2 PPG and losing bettors 8.9 units.

In this spot, Stafford is the second-least profitable QB in the Bet Labs database, ahead of just Matt Hasselbeck. — Evan Abrams

The Bills allow just 185.8 yards per game through the air, No. 1 in the NFL. In Stafford’s career, he has faced a defense allowing fewer than 200 passing yards per game 17 times and he is 4-13 ATS (23.5%), failing to cover the spread by 7.2 PPG, the least profitable QB in Bet Labs (-9.3 units). — Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Bills pass defense vs. Lions pass offense

Last week, the Cardinals showed that Lions wide receiver Kenny Golladay can be taken out of the game when shadowed by a top-notch corner.

In Week 14, Golladay ran 60.0% of his routes against Patrick Peterson, who held him to zero targets in his coverage. On the other 40.0% of his routes, Golladay managed a 2-5-0 receiving line on four targets.

Bills cornerback Tre’Davious White isn’t quite as good as Peterson, but he’s done fine work this year in shadowing Davante Adams (Week 4), DeAndre Hopkins (Week 6), T.Y. Hilton (Week 7) and Josh Gordon (Week 8), and for his career he’s allowed a catch rate of just 50%.

White figures to match up against Golladay for the majority of his routes, and overall the Bills rank third in pass-defense DVOA. They should be able to neutralize Golladay, and the rest of the Lions’ wide receivers are of little concern, especially with Marvin Jones (knee, IR) out.

And the Lions passing attack hasn’t been the same since the team traded away longtime wide receiver Golden Tate in Week 9. The team’s 2018 per-game splits without him are horrible.

  • With Tate (Weeks 1-8): 24.4 points, 275.1 passing yards, two passing touchdowns
  • Without Tate (Weeks 9-14): 16.7 points, 212.5 passing yards, 0.67 passing touchdowns

Against such a feckless passing game, the Bills defense should dominate. — Matthew Freedman

Which team is healthier? Bills

LeSean McCoy (hamstring) is shaping up as a game-time decision for Sunday. His absence would likely result in a committee between Chris Ivory and Marcus Murphy.

The Lions have a few additional concerns to worry about, as none of slot receiver Bruce Ellington (hamstring), running back Kerryon Johnson (knee) nor right tackle Rick Wagner (concussion) are guaranteed to suit up.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Kenny Golladay

DFS edge: Patrick Peterson wound up tracking Kenny Golladay on 60% of his routes last week, but alas, Stafford had fourth-fewest pass attempts in a single game of his entire career (23).

Golladay’s two receptions for five-scoreless yards on four targets was a firm reminder that anybody involved in one of the league’s worst offenses will carry a frighteningly-low weekly floor.

This week’s matchup won’t be much easier for Golladay, as White has emerged as one of the league’s brightest young stars at the cornerback position. Overall, he’s held each of Keenan Allen (6-67-0), Stefon Diggs (4-17-0), Davante Adams (8-81-0), Corey Davis (4-49-0) and Josh Gordon (4-42-0).

The Bills’ third-ranked defense in both overall and pass DVOA isn’t a unit to target in general, especially not with the Lions’ slow-paced and low-scoring offense. Only the Redskins-Jaguars’ matchup currently has a lower over/under.– Ian Hartitz

Bet to watch: Lions +2.5 & Lions Moneyline +115

This isn’t exactly the marquee game of the week but it is the best value on the board according to the Bet Labs simulations. A few weeks ago the Bills were the laughing stock of the league and for some reason they are now getting some respect from the betting market.

Giving 4.5 points to the Jets last week was too much and the numbers say the Lions should be small road favorites this week.

I am still holding out hope that this line gets to the key number of three points, but I will also have some money on the Lions moneyline for the outright win. — Travis Reed


Betting odds: Arizona Cardinals at Atlanta Falcons

  • Spread: Falcons -10
  • Over/Under: 44
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

Betting market: At 3-10, the Cardinals are tied for the worst team in the NFL. However, the Falcons are 3-10 against the spread, all alone for worst record in the eyes of bettors.

With them being such large favorites, 57% of bettors are fading them and taking the Cards plus the points. The public support the line has moved to -10 (see live betting data here). — Mark Gallant

Trend to know: Considering picking the Falcons in a survivor pool or as  a safe moneyline or survivor pick this week? In Matt Ryan’s career, he is 9-2 straight up when facing teams who are scoring fewer than 14 points per game. However, in his last two games in this spot he is 0-2 straight up. — Evan Abrams

Did you know? The Falcons have lost five straight and are favored by more than a touchdown. Atlanta is just the eighth team since 2003 to accomplish this feat. The previous seven teams went 5-2 SU and 3-4 ATS. — John Ewing

The home team has won the last nine meetings straight up between the Cardinals and Falcons dating back to 2001. The last time the road team won in this fixture was on September 30, 2001, when Chris Chandler and the Falcons beat Jake Plummer and the Cardinals in Arizona. — Evan Abrams

The Falcons are also the worst team in the NFL against the second-half spread this season at 3-10. — Evan Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Larry Fitzgerald in the slot

Josh Rosen’s target distribution in the offense’s first game without Christian Kirk (foot, IR) featured David Johnson (10 targets), Larry Fitzgerald (9), Trent Sherfield (7) and J.J. Nelson (7).

Fitz seems to be the most likely candidate to continue to see a hefty target share and is set up for success against a Falcons defense that has struggled against seemingly any-and-every slot receiver this season.

  • Nelson Agholor (8-33-0)
  • Tyler Boyd (11-100-0)
  • Juju Smith-Schuster (4-34-1)
  • Adam Humphries (3-82-0)
  • Maurice Harris (10-124-0)
  • Sterling Shepard (5-167-0)
  • Jarvis Landry (2-22-0)
  • Cole Beasley (5-51-0)
  • Randall Cobb (5-43-1)
Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Josh Rosen

The floor is low for anyone involved in an offense presently implied to score just 17.75 points, but Fitz is popping a bit in our FantasyLabs Pro Models on DraftKings, where his $4,700 price tag comes with a +2.4 Projected Plus/Minus. — Ian Hartitz

Which team is healthier? Cardinals

The Cardinals could be without linebacker Deone Bucannon (chest), wide receiver Chad Williams (ankle), safety Budda Baker (knee) and right guard Oday Aboushi (toe) for their Week 15 matchup against the Falcons.

Things aren’t any prettier on the other sideline, as each of tight end Austin Hooper (knee) along with defensive tackles Grady Jarrett (groin, shoulder) and Terrell McClain (toe) aren’t guaranteed to suit up Sunday.

The good news is Deion Jones (toe) and Julio Jones (foot, calf, illness) are tentatively expected to suit up despite not getting in a full practice all week.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: David Johnson’s 22.8 touches per game since Week 8 rank fourth among all running backs. In fact, his 75.5% carry share in that time frame trails only Nick Chubb and Ezekiel Elliott.

Johnson has an extremely favorable matchup against a Falcons defense that ranks 31st in rush DVOA and is allowing 8.8 targets and 59.8 receiving yards per game to opposing backfields.

DJ could continue to be heavily involved in the passing game since the Cardinals are 10-point underdogs in Atlanta.

He checks in with a solid 94% Bargain Rating on FanDuel, but he’s especially in play on a full-PPR site like DraftKings. — Justin Bailey

Bet to watch: All of our experts are staying away from this game at the moment, but we’ll update this file is that changes as more props get posted closer to kickoff.


Betting odds: Washington Redskins at Jacksonville Jaguars

  • Spread: Jaguars -7.5
  • Over/Under: 36
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: I was curious as to how the public would bet this very, very low over/under, and at the time of writing, bets are split almost exactly 50-50 (see live data here).

The Jaguars are getting a steady 62% of bets and 56% of dollars so far and the line keeps moving in their favor. It took a few hours after opening for them to move from -6.5 to -7, then a few days for the line to move off the key number of -7 to -7.5.

Looks like a combination of casual and sharper bettors have decided that the Jags are a strong bet, even with Cody Kessler under center. Mark Gallant

Trends to know: This is the first time there has been a total of 36 or fewer points since the 2012 season. The over went 31-17 in games with totals of 36 or fewer points between  2008 and 2012. John Ewing

It’s been a rough two-game stretch for the Jaguars offense. Jacksonville has managed only 15 total points and 466 total net yards of offense — including one pass of 25-plus yards and two runs of 10-plus yards.

Teams that score fewer than 10 points in consecutive games are 60-37-1 (61.9%) against the spread since 2003, covering the spread by 3.9 points per game.

The Jaguars are only the second team over that span to open as higher than a touchdown favorite in this spot: The Cowboys were the first, winning and covering the 13.5-point spread at home against the Raiders in 2009. Evan Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Redskins WRs vs. Jaguars CBs

The Redskins aren’t expected to score a ton of points in Jacksonville.

Washington’s projected starting receivers Josh Doctson (79th), Jamison Crowder (107th) and Maurice Harris (109th) all rank unfavorably in Pro Football Focus grades. Meanwhile, Jacksonville cornerbacks D.J. Hayden (24th), A.J. Bouye (25th) and Jalen Ramsey (27th) have all been excellent and rank favorably in PFF grades.

Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: A.J. Bouye

The trio have combined for more interceptions (five) than touchdowns allowed (three) this season. Justin Bailey

Which team is healthier? Jaguars

Both teams have plenty of key players on IR, but the Jaguars are expected to potentially only be without field-stretcher D.J. Chark (quad) and kicker Josh Lambo (right groin) as far as their active roster is concerned.

Meanwhile, the Redskins could be without tight end Jordan Reed (foot), right guard Tony Bergstrom (ankle, knee), linebacker Ryan Anderson (hamstring) and Doctson (concussion).

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The Jaguars will be taking on a Redskins team that’s implied for an absurdly low 14.25 points. Per our Trends tool, defenses that are squaring off against offenses with comparable implied team totals have averaged 12.49 DraftKings points per game with a high +3.26 Plus/Minus. Bailey

Bet to watch: All of our experts are staying away from this game at the moment, but we’ll update this file is that changes as more props get posted closer to kickoff.


Betting odds: Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers

  • Spread: 49ers -3.5
  • Over/Under: 44
  • Time: 4:05 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

Betting market: Seattle has been hot as of late, but sharps are fading the Seahawks hard. The Niners are commanding just one-third of the spread bets, but three-quarters of the cash as of writing (see live odds here).

There has also been a reverse line move triggered on San Fran, which is a great indicator of sharp action.

Since opening, the Seahawks have fallen from -6.5 to -3.5 thanks to this pros vs. Joes split. Mark Gallant

Weather report: The forecast is currently calling for overcast conditions with 60 degree temps, which is pretty solid compared to the rest of the league. The average wind speed of 11 mph is a cause for concern, though … for over bettors.

Games have gone under more than 55% of the time with double-digit wind speeds, according to our Bet Labs data. Gallant

Trends to know: Seattle is 8-3-2 against the spread this season while San Francisco is 4-9 ATS.

In November or later, it’s been profitable to bet bad ATS teams that have covered 30% or less of games against good ATS teams that have covered 60% or more of games: 78-45-3 (63%) ATS. John Ewing

Did you know? The Seahawks are the NFL’s most profitable team this season against the second-half spread, going 10-3 and covering by 3.4 points per game. Evan Abrams

Russell Wilson is 12-2 straight-up and 11-2-1 (84.6%) ATS against the 49ers, covering the spread by 6.5 points per game. The 49ers are by far Wilson’s most profitable opponent by almost six full units more than his next.

Wilson and the Seahawks beat the 49ers, easily covering the 10-point spread just two weeks ago. Wilson is 27-16-2 (62.8%) ATS when facing a team the second time after beating them by double-digits in their first meeting. That includes 7-1 SU and 6-1-1 ATS when facing the 49ers in this spot. Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Seahawks offense vs. 49ers defense

The 49ers’ 22nd-ranked defense in Football Outsiders’ overall DVOA will be tasked with containing one of the most efficient offenses in the league.

The Seahawks’ passing and rushing offenses rank sixth in efficiency in terms of offensive DVOA. Wilson has been ridiculously efficient, sporting an 8.4% touchdown rate, which trails only Patrick Mahomes this season.

Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Russell Wilson

These two teams met in Week 13 and the Seahawks throttled the 49ers, 43-16, and Wilson threw four touchdowns on just 17 pass attempts. Justin Bailey

Which team is healthier? Seahawks

The Seahawks make an annoying habit of listing roughly half their roster on the early injury report, but only wide receiver Doug Baldwin (hip), running back Rashaad Penny (ankle) and linebacker K.J. Wright (knee) are thought to be at serious risk of missing Sunday’s game.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The 49ers haven’t asked Richard Sherman to do anything this season that he hasn’t already mastered.

Sherman has ultimately spent 85% of his snaps as the defense’s left cornerback, meaning Baldwin (if he goes) and Tyler Lockett should run the majority of their routes against K’Waun Williams and Akhello Witherspoon — Pro Football Focus’ 57th and 113th-ranked cornerbacks, respectively, out of 113 qualified corners.

Still, every Seahawks pass-catcher carries a low ceiling considering only Josh Allen and Marcus Mariota have more games (4) than Wilson (3) with 10 to 20 pass attempts this season.

None of the Seahawks wide receivers carry a positive Projected Plus/Minus in our FantasyLabs Pro Models, but Wilson’s $6,700 price tag on DraftKings comes with a GPP-friendly 69% Leverage Rating. Hartitz

Bet to watch: Niners +3.5

It’s back to the well for a third week in a row with the 49ers.

The Niners fell victim to turnovers in their last game against the Seahawks, highlighted by a 98-yard pick-six by linebacker Bobby Wagner.

San Francisco out-gained Seattle 452 to 331 in total yards while averaging 6.1 yards per play in that game. In fact, the Niners rank fourth in the league in adjusted net yards per play at +0.6.

I expect the Niners’ front seven to get pressure against a Seahawks’ offensive line that ranks 29th in Football Outsiders’ adjusted sack rate.

San Francisco should be able to extract revenge with a rush defense that ranks top 10 in power success, second-level yards and open field yards. Collin Wilson


Betting odds: New England Patriots at Pittsburgh Steelers

  • Spread: Patriots -3
  • Over/Under: 52
  • Time: 4:25 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: CBS

Betting market: All signs point to Ben Roethlisberger playing, but the betting line is drastically different than last week’s lookahead line at the Westgate, which had the Steelers favored at -2.5.

When most books opened this game on Tuesday, the Pats were 1-point favorites. That has since risen to -3, as the Patriots are the most popular bet of the week with 77% of bets and 65% of the money as of writing (see live data here).

I’d expect some buyback on the Steelers now, especially with any further confirmation that Roethlisberger is healthy. Mark Gallant

Trends to know: The Patriots lost to the Dolphins on the final play of their Week 14 matchup. Since 2003, Tom Brady is 34-11 against the spread following a regular-season loss. John Ewing

This will be the Patriots’ second straight game away from Foxborough, but no quarterback has come close to achieving the success that Brady has had playing back-to-back road games.

Brady is 21-10-1 (67.7%) ATS in the second of two straight road games since 2003, covering by 6.5 points per game. When the Pats face an opponent with a record better than .500 in this spot, Brady is 16-4 (80%) ATS, covering by 12 points per game. Evan Abrams

The numbers behind TB12’s dominance: Brady has owned the Steelers throughout his career, exploiting their zone defensive schemes. Brady is 11-2 against the Steelers (including playoffs) with a 6-2 record at Heinz Field.

In the teams’ 10 regular-season meetings, Brady is 8-2 with 25 touchdowns, four interceptions and a 111.8 quarterback rating — the highest against any opponent not named the Atlanta Falcons.

And if you include the three postseason wins — all of which came in AFC Championship games — Brady has 30 touchdowns and only four interceptions in 13 career games against Pittsburgh. Stuckey

Did you know? There are not many more accomplished quarterbacks in the NFL than Brady and Ben Roethlisberger, and this is just the 11th time they’ll face each other. (Big Ben is 3-7 ATS in their meetings.)

Here’s how the two stack up against the spread. Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski vs. Steelers’ Interior Pass Defense

The Steelers can slap Joe Haden on Josh Gordon, and they don’t have to worry too much about Chris Hogan, who hasn’t caught more than two passes in a game since Week 7 or scored since Week 2.

What the Steelers had better be worried about is Edelman and Gronkowski rampaging through them over the middle.

We’re not likely to see the Steelers go with much man coverage. That’s where Edelman would have the edge against slot cornerback Mike Hilton, who has allowed 1.58 yards per route run compared to 0.85 for Haden and 1.01 for Coty Sensabaugh (per Pro Football Focus), while Gronk would see safety Morgan Burnett, who has allowed 16.4 yards per catch.

Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Rob Gronkowski, Julian Edelman

But overall, the Steelers rank just 27th in Football Outsiders’ DVOA on passes over the middle compared to 17th to the right and 19th to the left, so this has been a problem area for them all season, and Bill Belichick has multiple top-end talents he can use to exploit it. Chris Raybon

Which team is healthier? Patriots

The Patriots (somehow) managed to have every player achieve full participation in practice all week.

The Steelers will luckily have Roethlisberger (ribs), but James Conner (ankle) is shaping up as a game-time decision. The only other question marks are safety Sean Davis (knee), right tackle Marcus Gilbert (knee) and linebacker Anthony Chickillo (ankle).

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

DFS edge: The Steelers have been very particular about asking Haden to travel with their opponent’s No. 1 receiver. Only the best of the best have earned this “privilege” since Haden joined the team last season, and he’s mostly won battles against DeAndre Hopkins (4-65-1), Julio Jones (5-62-0), A.J. Green (7-85-0), John Brown (3-15-0) and Devin Funchess (3-32-0).

Haden’s shadow duties haven’t extended into the slot, as he’s spent just 14 snaps as the defense’s nickel back all season.

This schematic principle was exploited by Keenan Allen and the Chargers in Week 13, when Allen caught just three passes for 31 yards and a touchdown in Haden’s coverage, but 11-of-15 targets for 117 yards against everyone else.

However, Gordon has only run 10% of his routes from the slot since joining the Patriots. Flash has become somewhat matchup-proof with at least 70 yards and/or a touchdown in seven of his 10 games with New England, but Tre’Davious White (4-42-0) and Adoree’ Jackson (4-81-0) largely held Gordon in check during their respective shadow dates.

Another way to look at all of this: Edelman should smash. Edelman has posted 11-97-0, 9-60-0 and 8-118-1 lines against the Steelers in three matchups since 2015. Hartitz

Bets to watch

Steelers +3: Even with a banged up Big Ben, I had this game either being a pick ’em or Steelers -1.

It’s pretty clear that Roethlisberger is set to play this week. We already saw him return to the Week 14 game after suffering his rib injury to engineer a touchdown drive that was too little, too late.

This line just seems like an overreaction to the Steelers’ loss to the Raiders that likely wouldn’t have occurred if Big Ben played the entire game. Sean Koerner

Over 52: This has the highest over/under on Sunday’s slate. Both the Steelers and Patriots are top 10 in situation-neutral pace this season, and Roethlisberger and Brady are top eight in pass attempts.

Since 2013, the Steelers and Pats have played each other four times in the regular season. And with an average over/under of 49 points in those games, they’ve combined to score 57.25 points per game (per the RotoViz Team Splits App).

Since Antonio Brown’s first All-Pro campaign in 2014, the Steelers have had a 16-6 over/under record at home against non-divisional opponents with Roethlisberger at quarterback, which has been good for a 40.9% return on investment for over bettors (per our data at Bet Labs).

Against teams that don’t have the benefit of playing them two times per season, the Steelers tend to find themselves in shootouts at Heinz Field. Matthew Freedman


Betting odds: Philadelphia Eagles at Los Angeles Rams

  • Spread: Rams -11.5
  • Over/Under: 52
  • Time: 8:20 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: NBC

Betting market: The Rams opened at -9.5 and had been bet up to -9 before the Carson Wentz (back) injury. After the game went off the board, the line reopened at -11 with Nick Foles set to start.

There was a bit of buyback on the Eagles once it reopened, with a reverse line move dropping the line to 10.5, initially suggesting sharp bettors didn’t believe there was a two-point difference between Wentz and Foles. But the line has since been bet back up a full point to 11.5 (see live odds here). Mark Gallant

Trends to know: The Rams are 11-2 straight-up but 5-7-1 against the spread.

Since 2003, teams that have won 80% or more their games but have a losing ATS record (like Los Angeles) have gone 31-40-2 ATS in their next game, including 1-4 ATS in December or later. John Ewing

The Rams are averaging 32.7 points per game, which is third-most in the NFL behind only the Chiefs and Saints. But last week in Chicago, Los Angeles mustered only six points in a loss.

Since 2003, 10 teams have played a game in December or later that are averaging at least 30 points per game and have scored just 14 or fewer points in their previous game.

Those teams are 9-1 SU and 7-3 ATS in their next game, covering by 5.2 points while averaging 31.7 points. Evan Abrams

Did you know? Over the past 35 years, 11 reigning Super Bowl champions have been listed as a touchdown underdog the following season. Those teams are 2-8 SU, but are actually 6-4 ATS due to some inflated spreads.

Over that span, no reining Super Bowl champion has been listed as an underdog multiple times in the season after winning it all … before the 2018 Eagles. This is the second time they’ve been listed as underdogs of a touchdown or more this season. Abrams

Biggest mismatch and DFS edge: Rams’ passing offense vs. Eagles’ secondary

Since Ronald Darby (ACL) went on IR, the Eagles are allowing 318.75 passing yards per game (30th), 8.67 yards per attempt (28th) and a 73.47% completion rate (31st).

They’re also allowing a league-high 137.25 receiving yards per game on passes thrown 15-plus yards downfield, along with a 90.5% deserved catch rate on such passes in that timeframe, per Sports Info Solutions.

The Rams offense will look to rebound after its abysmal showing against the Bears. Luckily for them, Jared Goff has averaged 9.04 yards per attempt, 2.15 passing touchdowns and 319.91 passing yards per game at home while under Sean McVay.

Goff and all his pass catchers are in play against the Eagles.

Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Robert Woods

Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks are priced within $100 and project within one point of each other on DraftKings and FanDuel. Stacking both with Goff in tournaments for the Thursday-Monday slate is an intriguing contrarian move after their whole offense disappointed last week.

Goff boasts a positive correlation of 0.65 with Cooks and 0.13 with Woods. Justin Bailey

Which team is healthier? Rams

Rams center John Sullivan (concussion) managed to get in a full practice on Wednesday and is expected to suit up Sunday night.

Meanwhile, the Eagles’ injury-riddled defense could be without defensive end Michael Bennett (foot), defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan (back), linebacker Jordan Hicks (calf) as well as cornerbacks Sidney Jones (hamstring) and Avonte Maddox (leg).

Running backs Darren Sproles and Josh Adams could see heightened roles with Corey Clement (knee, IR) done for the season, but the floor of the entire offense is lowered with Foles starting in place of Wentz.

Note: Info as of 6 p.m. ET Thursday. See our Injury Report for daily practice participation and game statuses up until kickoff. — Ian Hartitz

Bet to watch: Eagles +11.5

Does Foles starting help this bet? Maybe, maybe not. I don’t know. He did win Super Bowl MVP, so he’s not exactly your standard backup.

Why I like the Eagles doesn’t have to do with their quarterback, though. It has everything to do with the Rams.

The Rams’ record is better than what it should be if you are a believer in point differential. Their winning percentage is .846, but their Pythagorean expected winning percentage is below .700.

Historically, in the final three weeks of the season, it’s been a strong bet to fade teams whose Pythagorean winning percentage is at least 12.5% worse than their actual winning percentage.

Those teams have covered less than 40% of the time in these spots, but when they’re favorites of at least a touchdown, they’ve covered less than 30% of the time. Gallant 


Editor’s note: The opinions on these games are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

How would you rate this article?

Top Offers

Action Newsletter
Sign Up >
The top betting news and picks for all the big games delivered directly to your inbox daily.
Action Podcasts
Listen >
The award-winning Action Network Podcast covers all angles of betting and DFS from industry-leading pros.
Betting 101
Bet Smarter >
New to betting? No sweat. Check out our betting education hub, which ranges from beginner tips to advanced strategies.
Sports Betting Legalization
Predictions >
When will sports betting be legal in your state? Check our our projections for all 50 states.
Betting Calculators
Try Now >
Easily calculate your winnings for straight bets and parlays using American, Decimal, or Fractional odds.
Expert Picks
Best Bets >
See all of the bets Action Network experts are making in real-time, covering the big games and the hidden gems.

Top Stories