NFL Betting: Riding the Packers Bandwagon vs. Raiders in Week 15

Jason Lake

Wednesday, December 16, 2015 7:19 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015 7:19 PM UTC

The “big” money is on the Green Bay Packers for this week's NFL picks. But the Oakland Raiders will have a few tricks up their sleeves when they meet this Sunday.

Jason's 2015 record as of Dec. 16: 48-45-2 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 25-31 Total

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NFL Pick: Green Bay Packers Against the Spread
Best Line Offered: -3 (-110) at Pinnacle

Trust Issues
You may have noticed we haven't been too keen lately on the Green Bay Packers here at the home office. We did follow the Packers in Week 2 (successfully) and Week 8 (unsuccessfully), but otherwise, it's been the “fade” bucket for Green Bay. Five times we've recommended betting against the Packers; three times we were correct. You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch.

Maybe it's time to turn those frowns upside-down. The Packers have won back-to-back games to retake the NFC North lead at 9-4 SU and 8-5 ATS; their opponents this Sunday (4:05 p.m. ET, FOX), the Oakland Raiders, have done some promising things this year, but they've also been painfully inconsistent at 6-7 SU and 7-6 ATS. The sharps seem to like Green Bay as a 3-point road chalk on the Week 15 NFL odds board. Our consensus reports at press time show two-thirds of bettors on the Packers, supplying 72 percent of the action.

What Would JC Do?
Injuries have been the big story with the Packers this year, particularly on offense. But at least the offensive line has started to jell. Green Bay had four of its five regular starters on board for last week's 28-7 win over the Dallas Cowboys (+6 away), and center JC Tretter once again filled in admirably for Corey Linsley (ankle), as the Packers rushed for 230 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Now that Green Bay's protection issues have been solved – for the moment – the attention turns to the new big story: head coach Mike McCarthy taking back control of the play-calling from associate head coach Tom Clements. With all those aforementioned injuries, there's no point in “blaming” Clements for Green Bay's No. 8-ranked offense, but Aaron Rodgers and the rest of the team have a built-in comfort level with McCarthy. Things definitely went well against the Cowboys.

Slippin' Away
The Raiders should be tougher to beat. They've got league's No. 16-ranked defense, according to Football Outsiders; the Dallas defense was ranked No. 18 going into last week's game, but that included some of the worst run-stuffing in the NFL – as we witnessed on Sunday. Oakland's defense is nicely balanced at No. 16 against both the pass and the rush.

Oakland's No. 11-ranked offense should also do a better job of moving the chains and keeping the Raiders defense fresh. However, that offense hasn't been quite as good in recent weeks, and Oakland is on the verge of playoff elimination after going 2-4 SU and 3-3 ATS over the past six games. It's sketchy enough that we're happy to follow the money with our NFL picks and get back on the Packers bandwagon – for the moment.

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