Hunting Down Early Week 15 NFL Betting Value Across the Odds Board

Kevin Stott

Monday, December 14, 2015 7:45 PM GMT

Monday, Dec. 14, 2015 7:45 PM GMT

Let’s take thumbnail sketch looks at this week’s schedule including some series results, relevant Trends as well as some merry first-gut NFL picks to put you in the Holiday spirit.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. St. Louis Rams PK, 41
Rookie QB and Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-7 SU, 7-6 ATS) and Rookie RB sensation Todd Gurley and the punchless St. Louis Rams (5-8 SU, 5-7-1 ATS) meet here in a game which now only matters to visitors Tampa Bay in the context of shooting for a Wild Card spot heading in, who for now are still the projected 7th-seed in the NFC, despite losing to the Saints on Sunday in Week 13. The last meeting between these two saw the Rams win outright as 3-point underdogs in Tampa in 2012, 28-13, while in the last game in this series here in the Show Me State, the Rams also won and covered, this time as 3-point favorites in 2013, 23-13. St. Louis is an impressive 5-1 ATS the L6 against the Buccaneers and beat Detroit on Sunday, but with the 2nd-least Total number of Points in the league (210), this is a tough call and a stinker of a primetime pick by the Suits and Ties. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook opened up WR Tavon Austin and the host Rams as 7-point favorites over the Buccaneers in their renowned NFL Games of the Year—released each Summer—for this one so you can see how much perceptions of both teams have changed with the Advanced Line was Rams -1. And you can find a nice range here, for now, with the Rams at -1½ at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, (the Rams) -1 at Heritage with may Pick ‘em’s available at many places Offshore in Las Vegas and and even a Buccaneers -1 at Bookmaker.

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New York Jets -3, 42 vs. Dallas Cowboys
The first Saturday game of the Regular Season sees Ryan Fitzpatrick and the New York Jets (8-5 SU, 7-5-1 ATS) heading to AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas to face the Dallas Cowboys (4-9 SU, 4-9 ATS) in a Week 15 inter-conference game which still means something to both teams. The last time these two teams played, the Jets won 27-24 in Week 1 in the 2011 season but failed to cover ATS as 6-point favorites at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford while the last game here in the Lone State State saw the Cowboys saddle the Jets, 34-3, and cover ATS as big 14½-point favorites in 2007. The Cowboys are 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series but without starting QB Tony Romo (Collarbone, Out for Season) and coming off a Loss to the Packers in Green Bay on Sunday in Week 13, it’s hard to want to back Dallas or even lay the 3 points on the Road and back the Jets and Brandon Marshall. This seems like it could be a very sluggish, slow-starting (1st Quarter Under 7½) and low-scoring game with New York AFC—which toppled Tennessee in East Rutherford on Sunday—finding a way to game-manage a Win. In the NFL Games of the Year from the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, America’s Former Team (the Cowboys) opened up as 7-point favorites over the Jets, so the monster, 10-point perception swing says it all, of course courtesy in great part to that second unfortunate Injury to Cowboys precious starting QB and Eastern Illinois University product Romo on Thanksgiving.

NFL Pick: Under 42
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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Chicago Bears vs. Minnesota Vikings -5, 43
Santa Claus, Indiana product Jay Cutler and the fading Chicago Bears (5-8 SU, 6-7 ATS) head to Minneapolis on Sunday afternoon to play Teddy Bridgewater (35/36, 335 yards in Loss to Cardinals on TNF) and the Minnesota Vikings (8-5 SU, 10-3 ATS) in an NFC North game from TCF Bank Stadium which only has meaning to the Home team. When these two met earlier this year at Soldier Field in the Windy City, the Vikings won and covered as 1½-point favorites (on one play), 23-20 on Nov. 1 on a last-second Blair Walsh FG, while in this meeting last year in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, Minnesota won 13-9 in Week 17 but failed to cover ATS as 7-point favorites. The Vikings—10-2-1 Under after Week 14—are a woeful 4-8 ATS the L12 in this series but Chicago, with some newfound spark from RBs Ka’Deem Carey and Rookie sensation Jeremy Langford (Michigan State) have absolutely nothing to lose after disappointing Losses to San Francisco and Washington at Home in Weeks 13 and 14. Thoughts the visiting Bears can possibly win this game have eroded while thoughts of the Under and backing the host Vikings on the Money Line (-220, Bwin)—in a must-win for them in a way—are dancing through the head.

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Atlanta Falcons vs. Jacksonville Jaguars -3, 48½
Matt Ryan and the free-falling Atlanta Falcons (6-7 SU, 4-9 ATS) head to EverBank Field in Jacksonville on Sunday to face Blake Bortles (16/30, 230 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTS in Win over Colts on Sunday) and the Jacksonville Jaguars (5-8 SU, 7-6 ATS) in an inter-conference game which find the hosts clinging to life as the AFC’s projected 12th seed heading into play this week. The last time these two played, the Falcons won and covered, giving 13 points at Atlanta at the Georgia Dome, 41-14, while the last time these two played here in the Sunshine State (2007), the Jaguars won 13-7 but failed to cover the large 10-point spread. The Falcons are 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series and the Advanced Line here was Pick’ em, so you can see how the perceptions of RB Devonta Freeman (12 rushes, 40 yards in 38-0 Loss to Panthers on Sunday) and the Atlanta Falcons (L6) seem to continue to be dropping by the week, much like Republican Presidential hopeful and retired neurosurgeon, Ben Carson. It will be a long Winter for both.

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Houston Texans No Line vs. Indianapolis Colts
JJ Watt and the rejuvenated Houston Texans (6-7 SU, 6-7 ATS) welcome the wounded Indianapolis Colts (6-7 SU, 6-7 ATS) to NRG Stadium on Sunday afternoon in this Week 15 AFC South game which will likely drop the loser out of Postseason contention and may give the winner the division. The Colts (3-1 vs. AFC South) defeated their rival the Texans, covering ATS and winning outright as 5-point underdogs back in Week 5, while the last time these two played here at Lucas Oil Stadium in Naptown (last season), Indianapolis won 17-10 and pushed ATS as 7-point chalks. The Colts are 5-1-2 ATS the L8 in this series and are 4-0-1 ATS the L5 here at Home but with usual Indianapolis starting QB Andrew Luck (Kidney) and now his backup, Matt Hasselbeck (Neck, Probable Week 14) both hurt, as well as Texans QB Brian Hoyer, you can see why there’s (still) No Line up for this one and probably won’t be for at least a couple of days. Although the Colts have completely dominated this AFC South division the past several seasons, Watt, LB Brian Cushing and LB Jadeveon Clowney and the Texans have played lights out Defense since being down 41-0 at Halftime at Miami earlier this season and should be feared. If Charlie Whitehurst has to start against Houston, it seems that backing the hosts in this huge AFC South showdown no matter what the eventual Point Spread seems wise as this Colts teams is extremely banged up.

 

Kansas City Chiefs -7½, 43 vs. Baltimore Ravens
A hot team in the eyes of Oddsmakers, Handicappers and the General Public right now, the Kansas City Chiefs (8-5 SU, 7-6 ATS) head to Crab City on Sunday to face the host and also really banged-up Baltimore Ravens (4-9 SU, 3-8-2 ATS) who are without veteran team heartbeat WR Steve Smith, RB Justin Forsett and Deleware-product and starting QB Joe Flacco (Knee, done for season) and are forced to have to go with choppy, Interception-prone backup QB Matt Schaub, also hobbled. It must be December. The last time these two AFC teams met, the Ravens won 9-6 but failed to cover ATS as 6-point favorites at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas CIty in 2012, while the last time these two met here at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, it was the 2010 AFC Playoffs and the Ravens and Ray Lewis blasted the Chiefs, 30-7, easily covering the 3-point spread. The Chiefs have W7 straight are 3-1 ATS the L4 here in Baltimore. This may be a good Under.

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Buffalo Bills -1, 44 vs. Washington Redskins
Tyrod Taylor and the Buffalo Bills (6-7 SU, 6-6-1 ATS) head to FedExField in Landover, Maryland on Sunday afternoon to face the Washington Redskins (6-7 SU, 6-7 ATS) in an inter-conference affair which will be huge to both sides. The last time these two met, the Bills shut out the Redskins, 23-0 in Buffalo in 2011, easily covering ATS as 4-point chalks while the last meeting here in Landover saw the Bills win 17-16 as 6½-point underdogs in 2007. The Bills and WR Sammy Watkins are a sparkling 6-0 ATS the L6 against the Redskins and are the hesitant semi-lean here as they have the better team and need the Win more now after Sunday’s Loss to the Eagles and the mystique of Washington being able to protect and shine on its Home turf here went out the window on MNF last week when they couldn’t score a TD in a last-second Loss to the Dallas Cowboys.

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Tennessee Titans vs. New England Patriots -13½
The Advanced Line (SuperBook) here went from 10 to -13½ in no time after Sunday’s results and New England -14 seems to already (Monday morning) be popular line Offshore and Online. So? So if you want to back the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (11-2 SU, 6-4-3 ATS) and QB Tom Brady (65-48-1 ATS on Road) in this AFC inter-divisional tilt against Rookie QB Marcus Mariota and the Tennessee Titans (3-10 SU, 4-8-1) at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro this coming Sunday, best do so now. The last time these two teams met, the Patriots trounced the Titans, 34-13 in Nashville, covering ATS as 5-point favorites while the last meeting here in one of the Original 13 US Colonies back in 2009 saw New England embarrass Tennessee, 59-0 easily covering tATS as 9½-point favorites. The Patriots are 3-0 ATS the L3 in this series and 3-1 ATS the L4 here at Home against Tennessee and should easily win by 15 or more.

NFL Pick: Patriots -14
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

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Arizona Cardinals -3½, 50½ vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia is the site of this NFC aviary showdown between the host Philadelphia Eagles (6-7 SU, 6-7 ATS) and Carson Palmer and the upstart Arizona Cardinals (10-3 SU, 7-6 ATS) in a huge NFC inter-divisional showdown and game which will be much more important to Head Coach Chip Kelly and the Eagles. The last meeting between these two saw the Cardinals win 24-20 last season as 1-point underdogs at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, while in 2013 in the last meeting here in the City of Brotherly Love and Santa Claus Booers, the Eagles won, 24-21, but got nicked by the ½ point, giving up 3½ points as the Home favorite. Hey, things happen. The Cardinals are 6-1 ATS the L7 here and with weapons like WRs Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd and John “What Can” Brown “Do For You?”and a staunch D, the Cardinals are the queasy choice here against a schizophrenic Philadelphia squad. Note the wise primetime TV start and move for the fans.

NFL Pick: Cardinals -3.5
Best Line Offered: at Bet365

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Carolina Panthers -5½ vs. New York Giants
MVP-candidate Cam Newton and the still unbeaten Carolina Panthers (13-0 SU, 9-3 ATS) head to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey on Sunday to face Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr. and the host New York Giants (5-7 SU, 6-5-1 ATS, at Dolphins on Monday Night Football); Odds: Giants -1, 47, Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) in what will be a big game for the G-Men and only meaningful to the visitors from North Carolina in terms of keeping their unbeaten Record intact. The last time these two met, the Panthers shut out the Giants 38-0 as 2-point underdogs in Charlotte back in 2013 while the last meeting here in New Jersey, the then John Fox-coached Panthers lost and failed to cover against New York, 31-18 getting 5½ points in 2010. The Giants can possibly win this one and this has looked like it would be a tough spot on the Panthers schedule since the Summer and it still seems so.

NFL Pick: Giants +4
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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Cleveland Browns vs. Seattle Seahawks -14½, 43
Johnny Manziel and the Cleveland Browns (3-10 SU, 4-8-1 ATS) head to FirstEnergy Field in Seattle next Sunday to face Russell Wilson (5 TD passes on Sunday in Win at Ravens) and the watch-me-now Seahawks (8-5 SU, 6-6-1 ATS) as they head three Time Zones (EST to PST) west to face the defending NFC champions in a game which will only hold importance to the host Seahawks. The last time these two met, the Seahawks lost 6-3 at Cleveland in 2011 but pushed ATS getting 3 points while the last meeting here in the Emerald City was way back in 2003 at a funky place called Seahawks Stadium where the host Seahawks—the franchise’s second season in the NFC after leaving the AFC—pounded and covered ATS as 6-point favorites, 34-7. With the Seattle Defense now foaming at the mouth and rallying like they do in the 2nd Half of the Regular Season, expect Texas A&M product and former Heisman Trophy-winner Manziel to be frustrated beyond belief far, far from Home against a real, nasty professional NFL Defense. This could get ugly.

NFL Pick: Seahawks -14.5
Best Line Offered: at TheGreek

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Green Bay Packers -3, 47 vs. Oakland Raiders
David Carr and the Oakland Raiders (7-6 SU, 7-6 ATS) welcome Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers (9-4 SU, 8-5 ATS) to O.co Coliseum in Oakland on Sunday afternoon in an inter-conference Week 15 game which still matters to both teams now with Oakland the projected No. 8 seed in the AFC after their nice Win over the Broncos in Denver on Sunday. The last time these two historic NFL franchises met, the Packers romped to a 46-16 Win as 11½-point favorites at Lambeau Field in 2011, while the last meeting here in the Bay Area saw Green Bay and then QB Brett Favre roll to a 41-7 Win at Network Associate Coliseum in Oakland in 2003, easily covering the 5-point spread as Road favorites. The Packers are 5-1 ATS the L6 in this infrequent inter-conference series which will see Green Bay traveling two Time Zones west (MST to PST) to play veteran CB Charles Woodson and Oakland in a site they’ve (the Raiders), performed extremely poorly ATS the last decade or so. This one should be fun and closer than many think and the thought here is that Green Bay will already know the Vikings have beaten the Bears by about the time this one kicks off in California.

NFL Pick: Packers -3 
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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Miami Dolphins vs. San Diego Chargers PK -115
The Miami Dolphins (5-7 SU, 4-8 ATS, vs. Giants on Monday Night Football; Odds: Giants -1, 47, Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) head three Times Zones west (EST to PST) and 2,655 miles to Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego next Sunday afternoon to face Philip Rivers and the host Chargers (3-10 SU, 5-8 ATS) in a meaningless AFC inter-divisional game between two teams who expected to have better seasons and who are both fortunate to have beautiful, warm-weather cities in which to call home. The last time these two met, the Dolphins blanked the Chargers, 37-0 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens last season (2014), easily covering (by 34 points) ATS as 3-point favorites while the last meeting here in Southern California saw the Chargers win 26-16 in 2011 and cover as 6 ½-point chalks. The Fish are 7-2 ATS the L9 overall in this series against San Diego but this one is the Oddsmakers, fans and few will end up caring about for many reasons.

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Denver Broncos vs. Pittsburgh Steelers -5½, 45
Ben Roethlisberger and the awakening Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5 SU, 7-4-2 ATS) welcome Denver QBs Brock Osweiler and Peyton Manning to The Steel City this Sunday and the now somewhat desperate Broncos (10-3 SU, 8-4-1 ATS) in a big AFC inter-divisional game which will mean much to both historic clubs, seeded, 7th and 3rd respectively in the conference. The last time these two met, the Broncos defeated the Steelers, 31-19, covering ATS and winning outright as 2½-point favorites in Denver in 2012, while the last meeting here at Heinz Field saw the Broncos buck Pittsburgh, 35-3 and cover ATS as 7-point underdogs in 2007 when Bill Cowher was still the Steelers Head Coach. The Broncos are 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series and this one should be loads of Football Fun, with the staunch Denver defense (17.3 ppg, #1 in NFL) trying to hold WR Antonio Brown and the prolific Pittsburgh Offense 26.5 ppg, #5 in NFL) in check. Broncos Unders in the 1st Quarter have been fantastic this Regular Season, going a mind-boggling 11-2 after Sunday’s (DEN 6-0) winner. The SuperBook had this one a Pick (‘Em) in its NFL Games of the Year released early each Summer. And also of note here, Denver will be traveling 2 Time Zones east (MST to EST).

NFL Pick: 1st Quarter Under 7½

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Cincinnati Bengals -4, 40½ vs. San Francisco 49ers
Bengals backup QB AJ McCarron and Alabama product takes the reigns from injured starting QB Andy Dalton (Out, Fractured Bone in Hand) as the Cincinnati Bengals (10-3 SU, 9-2-2 ATS) head west 3 Time Zones (EST to PST) and 2,384 miles to The City By The Bay on Sunday to play Missouri-product Blaine Gabbert and the San Francisco 49ers (4-9 SU, 6-7 ATS) in an inter-conference meeting only important to the upstart visitors and Head Coach Marvin Lewis (103-97-11 ATS). The last time these two met, the Niners defeated Cincinnati at Home in the Queen City, 13-8 and covered ATS as 1-point favorites in 2011 while the last meeting here in San Francisco was at the old Candlestick Park in 2007 and saw the 49ers top the Bengals and win outright, 20-13 as big 9-point Home underdogs. The Bengals—who also saw starting TE Tyler Eiffert (Concussion) get hurt in their Loss at Pittsburgh on Sunday—are 6-2-1 ATS the L8 in this series and Cincinnati and WR AJ Green are 3-1 ATS the L4 here in San Francisco and may have too many weapons for the NFL-scoring low (188 points) hosts have actually played some good football under Gabbert. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook had San Francisco open up as 1½-point favorites in their NFL Games of the Year and with McCarron in, the thought is maybe the 49ers rally and upset Cincinnati?

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Detroit Lions vs. New Orleans Saints -3, 51
Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints (5-8 SU, 6-6-1 ATS) welcome Matthew Stafford, Rookie RB Ameer Abdullah (Nebraska) and the Detroit Lions (5-8 SU, 5-8 ATS) to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in The Big Easy next Monday night for a completely meaningless inter-divisional Week 15 NFC date between two teams who have had disappointing seasons and yet another primetime game that looked much better before the season began. The last time these two met, the Lions beat New Orleans 24-23 in Detroit last season (2014), but failed to cover ATS as 2½-point favorites while the last meeting here in New Orleans saw the Saints roll the Lions 45-28 in the opening round of the 2011/12 NFC Playoffs, covering as 10½ favorites in Motown. The Saints are 5-0 ATS the L5 in this series and 5-1 ATS the L6 here at Home in New Orleans. The Saints were installed as 3½-point favorites in this game here at the SuperBook in their renowned NFL Games of the Year. This baby could rocket over the Total.

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