NFL Week 13 Picks: Expert Bets for 3 Games, Including Jets vs Vikings
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images. Pictured: Mike White.
NFL Week 13 Picks
Sean Koerner: The Eagles will be getting back their first-round rookie run stuffer Jordan Davis for tomorrow’s game. It comes at the perfect time, as they’ll face off against a run-heavy team in the Titans.
I expect the Titans to lean heavily on Derrick Henry in this matchup, but he has struggled of late, rushing for just 178 yards on 64 carries (2.78 yards per carry) over the past three games.
The Eagles offense faces a tough test against a Titans defense that ranks first in DVOA against the run. That’s not going to stop the Eagles from having a run-heavy game plan, though, which means this could end up being a very run-heavy, low-scoring game script for both teams.
An added bonus for the under is that Adrian Hill’s crew will be officiating the game. The under has gone 37-21 (64%) in games he’s officiated in his career. One of the reasons for this is he tends to call offensive holding at a high rate and his 2.7 offensive holding calls a game ranks second among crews this season. In what should be a run-heavy game plan for both teams, we could see Hill make a pretty significant impact on this game.
So far, 61% of the action has been on the over, but I think the public is overlooking a lot of these underlying factors that suggest this will be a fairly low-scoring game.
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Sean Koerner: The Vikings rank second in our Luck Rankings, and a huge reason for that is their 8-0 record in one-possession games. They are 9-2 despite only having a +5 point differential on the season.
Minnesota faces a tough test this week against a Jets defense that ranks fourth in DVOA and has been able to generate the fifth-highest pressure rate despite blitzing at the third-lowest rate.
Also, Vikings left tackle Christian Darrisaw is expected to miss another game due to a concussion, which means Kirk Cousins will likely face a ton of pressure against a stout Jets defensive line.
On the other side, Mike White has injected life into the Jets offense. While he likely isn’t going to be going to the Pro Bowl this year, he’s a significant upgrade over Zach Wilson under center, who has struggled mightily in his second season.
I think this is a perfect spot to back a team on the rise and fade one of the luckier/overrated teams in the league right now. This line is more likely to drop to +2.5 before kickoff than it will go up to +3.5, so I think it’s key to lock it in now at the key number of 3.
Sean Koerner: As of Saturday evening, 64% of the action is on Cleveland. Deshaun Watson will be making his season debut, and because of that I think this line is pretty inflated. The Browns’ new QB will be extremely rusty and in his brief preseason action, he looked completely out of sync with the offense.
Watson is obviously an upgrade over Jacoby Brissett in the long haul, but I think it’ll take Watsona few games to actually provide more value to this offense (over Brissett). Plus, I anticipate the Texans and their home crowd to be up for the return of Watson. Expect Houston to give maximum effort in this spot.
The Browns run defense has been atrocious this year (ranked 31st in DVOA), so the Texans should be able to have success leaning heavily on Dameon Pierce here. I think they should be able to keep it close with that game plan, but I think Kyle Allen gives them a better chance at a backdoor cover than Davis Mills if this becomes a two- or three-score game since he can be a bit of a gunslinger when needed. We saw this last week as he nearly led the Texans to a backdoor cover by outscoring the Dolphins 15-0 in the second half.
I’m projecting this closer to Browns -6, so I like the value we are getting on Texans +8.