In-Depth Look at NFL False Favorites & Top Dogs for Week 16

Doug Upstone

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 10:51 PM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2015 10:51 PM UTC

Late in the NFL season, you have to look at the sportsbooks' betting lines two ways and while what I'm about to say seems incredibly obvious, I will explain what I mean for NFL picks.

At this time it is about finding motivation when bad teams are matched up. When you have mismatches with spreads of 10 points or greater, it is about determining how the favorite will play. If you believe they have the willingness to play hard right from the start, often these underdogs are not going to put up a fight and roll over. But if a chalky fave lets their opponent hang around and they become engaged, then they have a tussle on their hands.

For this article and the video that follows, the thought process will be looking for the right situations and I will look to close super season at 29-15-1 ATS, 65.9 percent, with three NFL picks that are winners. The current NFL odds are courtesy of


False Favorite - Buffalo More A Wreck Than Dallas
The story out of Buffalo is more the same, just with a different twist after latest loss. Rex 'The Orator' Ryan talked about "everything under review" the next two weeks, which is coach-speak for - I could be fired if we don't play better. Ryan's defensive system has made a good defense worse and he's never had a dependable quarterback. The Bills are six-point favorites over Dallas, but when a team is more dysfunctional than Cowboys, that explains a lot. Rex seems to have lost the locker room and ownership is quieter than expected, which means lots of mental distractions. Unless Dallas has a bundle of turnovers, they should slide under the six.

NFL Pick: Cowboys +7

Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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False Favorite - Detroit Getting Too Much Credit
The Lions convincing win over New Orleans has them back in the good graces of bettors. Their opening number of -7.5 over San Francisco went to -9 quicker than a kid opening up the first Christmas present under the tree. I will not disagree this Lions team should be on a 5-1 SU and ATS move, but this football handicapper does not like them giving this many points. Prosperity and Detroit football and seldom used in same sentence and after averaging seven or more yards a play in last game, the Lions are 8-21 ATS. Motivation has also been a Lions issue, with 18-34 ATS mark versus foes being outscored by six or more points. Detroit wins, just by touchdown or less.

NFL Pick: 49ers +10

Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":2837219, "sportsbooksIds":[169,1096,93,19,92,238], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]

Top Underdog - Jets Give Patriots A Game Again
Last week I gave credit to Jay Gruden and this week I do the same to my least favorite quarterback in the NFL, Ryan Fitzpatrick. I have railed on him for years here, but have to give credit where it is due, as he has strung together four outstanding performances and been clutch late in games leading to New York victories. New England has failed to cover past five games against Gang Green (0-4-1 ATS) and is working with a shorter cast of offensive weapons. I would be patient as football bettor and grab the +3.5 or +4 that are sure to be available instead of taking the +3. Know this, the Patriots are 0-6 ATS after allowing 17 points or less in two straight games since last season.

NFL Pick: Jets +3 

Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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