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NFL Odds, Picks, Predictions: Why Experts Like Steelers To Cover vs. Ravens, Plus 2 Ways To Bet Seahawks-49ers

NFL Odds, Picks, Predictions: Why Experts Like Steelers To Cover vs. Ravens, Plus 2 Ways To Bet Seahawks-49ers article feature image
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Dougal Brownlie/Getty Images. Pictured: Seahawks QB Russell Wilson

  • A pair of underdogs to cover their spreads, plus cases for both sides of the Seahawks-49ers over/under.
  • Find out how our experts are betting Sunday's late afternoon games based on NFL odds for Week 13.

NFL Odds, Picks, Predictions

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Steelers +4.5 vs. Ravens
Seahawks +3.5 vs. 49ers
Seahawks-49ers Over 45.5
Seahawks-49ers Under 45.5


Ravens at Steelers

Pick
Steelers +4.5
Best Book

Time
4:25 p.m. ET

Chris Raybon: Since John Harbaugh became the head coach of the Ravens in 2008, only nine of the 26 matchups between these two teams (35%) have been decided by more than four points.

Lamar Jackson has struggled in his past five starts, throwing seven touchdowns to nine interceptions while failing to pass for more than 266 yards in any game. He also hasn’t rushed for a TD since Week 2. Going into a hostile Pittsburgh environment with T.J. Watt potentially activated off the COVID list is not exactly a get-right spot for Jackson.

Meanwhile on the other side of the ball, the Steelers match up well with the Ravens. Baltimore is better at stopping the run (fifth in Football Outsiders’ DVOA) than the pass (24th), but Pittsburgh’s offensive success isn’t predicated on the run given their line’s struggles to move people off the ball. The Ravens also play man coverage at the fourth-highest rate, and the Steelers have been more efficient vs. man coverage than zone this season.

And despite Mike Tomlin letting us down last week, he’s still 44-36 (56%) against the spread (ATS) off a loss, 38-16-2 (70%) ATS as a dog from Week 3 on, and 29-8-1 (78%) as a dog vs. an opponent with an equal or better winning percentage (per our Action Labs data).

I’d bet this to +4.


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49ers at Seahawks

Pick
Seahawks +3.5
Best Book

Time
4:25 p.m. ET

Brandon Anderson: The 49ers are the hot team, but this screams trap game.

Russell Wilson clearly is not himself, but he’s getting a little better each week, and that deep ball was back on Monday night. The 49ers’ pass defense has been leaky, and D.K. Metcalf has dominated them. Plus Wilson is 24-12-2 (67%) ATS as an underdog.

Besides, as great as the Niners have looked, they looked that good because they finally got healthy. The return of Trent Williams and George Kittle has this offense playing as well as any over the past month — turns out getting your two best players back helps. But the 49ers lost Deebo Samuel and Fred Warner this past week, which is a big deal. Samuel has been one of the league’s most dangerous weapons, and Warner is one of the NFL’s top linebackers and would’ve been an important weapon limiting Wilson.

Besides, Seattle has dominated San Francisco for the better part of a decade. The Seahawks have won 14-of-16 against the Niners, including a 28-21 victory in San Francisco two months ago. Pete Carroll is 7-2 against Kyle Shanahan, including 2-1 as an underdog. And this is exactly where we fade Shanahan, when he’s a favorite — he’s just 11–22–1 (33%) ATS as a favorite and even worse as a road favorite at 4-15-1 (21%). Underdog moneylines against Shanahan are returning 69% ROI over the last two seasons.

There’s another great trend in our favor: Teams on a three-loss streaks (like Seattle) are 59–32–2 ATS against opponents on two- or three-win streaks (like San Francisco), covering 65% of the time, including seven straight and twice already this season. It’s just the parity of the NFL. Seattle isn’t as bad as its record and this line is overinflated because of the last few weeks of results.

I like this down to +3.


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49ers at Seahawks

Pick
Over 45.5
Best Book

Time
4:25 p.m. ET

Stuckey: There’s some value in this over due to the recent poor production of the Seattle offense and some very lucky performances by its defense.

The Seahawks offense ranks fourth in Expected Points Added (EPA) per play on early downs, which is usually a recipe for success. However, they rank dead last (32nd) in that same category on both third and fourth down — two downs that usually have much higher variance. They rank dead last in both third-down conversion (32.5%) and dead last on fourth-down conversion rate (16.67%). Positive regression looms for this offense.

Plus, it’s fair to assume Wilson will eventually play better. Many suggested his original injury was a 7-8 week injury. Well, he just hit that mark, so he potentially could be back to full health this weekend against a 49ers defense dealing with a few key injuries.

Meanwhile, this SF offense has been rolling recently, ranking third in EPA per play since week 7. Even without Deebo Samuel, the 49ers should have no issues moving the ball against what should be an exhausted Seahawks defense. The Seahawks not only have to travel back across the country on a short week after a Monday night affair in the nation’s capital, but they were on the field that game for more than 41 minutes!

Plus, this defense is just not that good — as evidenced by a rank of 25th in EPA per play and 29th in success rate, including 32nd in dropback success rate (they also lost Tre Brown at corner). Despite those putrid metrics, they rank sixth in scoring D, in large part due to a top-five red zone defense. Expect both of those to correct themselves over the next few weeks. SF’s excellent red zone offense could be the perfect candidate to take full advantage.

For what it’s worth, the last seven meetings between these teams have had the following point totals: 59, 49, 51, 47, 64, 49 and 49. That’s an average of 52.6 points with no fewer than 49, including the meeting earlier this season.

I would bet this to 46.


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49ers at Seahawks

Pick
Under 45.5
Best Book

Time
4:25 p.m. ET

Sean Koerner: Last week, I bet the under 49.5 in 49ers-Vikings, but a handful of early plays ruined it: The 49ers returning a Kirk Cousins interception to the 2-yard line (then scoring on the very next play), the Vikings returning a kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown, and Adam Thielen scoring when the Vikings went for it on fourth-and-2. Then the game came to a screeching halt in the fourth quarter, when neither team scored.

I’m certainly not making excuses — a loss is a loss — but that specific loss only set us up with a better number this week.

I’m expecting the 49ers offense to continue to generate run-heavy, clock-killing drives to keep the Seahawks offense off the field. The 49ers will be without their top weapon in Deebo Samuel, which will result in fewer explosive plays. As for the Seahawks, Russell Wilson hasn’t looked himself since returning from his finger injury three weeks ago, and I’m not expecting him to magically turn it around this week.

Late-season divisional battles tend to be lower scoring, and this one sets up to be just that. I’m projecting this total closer to 43.5 and I’d bet down to 45 points.


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