NFL Picks: Early Betting Rundown For All Week 16 Matchups

Kevin Stott

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 2:10 PM UTC

Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2015 2:10 PM UTC

We look at the Week 16 NFL schedule including series results, relevant Trends as well as some ho-ho-hopeful first-instinct NFL picks which will hopefully win you some Xmas green.

After a profitable Week 15, we approach Christmas Week, and the second-to-last week in the Calendar year as well as the second-to-last week in the NFL’s Regular Season, and the slate this week delivers three wonderful presents down the chimney with the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots heading to MetLife Stadium on Sunday to face the Jets, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers facing Carson Palmer and the Cardinals in suburban Phoenix on Sunday and then AJ Green and the Bengals heading to Denver to face the Broncos on Monday Night Football in a huge AFC showdown.


Thursday, December 24, 2015—Christmas Eve
San Diego Chargers vs. Oakland Raiders -4½, 46½ (Pinnacle):
The Oakland Raiders (5-9 SU, 6-8 ATS) host their Californian AFC West mini-rivals, the San Diego Chargers (3-11 SU, 4-10 ATS) at the Coliseum in Oakland this Thursday night in the Chrismas Eve Week 16 lidlifter and yet another Lump of Coal in your NFL Holiday stocking from the Goodell Who Stole Christmas, although it always seems these two teams could have promising years then they fade or move cities. When these two met in Week 7 earlier this season in San Diego, the Raiders won outright and covered ATS, 37-29 as the game went well Over the Total (48). Here in this game at last season, the Chargers won 31-28 but failed to get the money ATS as 7-point favorites. The Trends support backing the Silver and Black here as the Raiders and QB David Carr are now 10-3 ATS the L13 against San Diego. On Sunday, mercurial QB Philip Rivers and the Chargers won 30-14 against the Dolphins in maybe their last game ever at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, while the Raiders were getting grated by Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, 30-20 here at Home in Oaktown where they now have a 2-5 SU Record this season and are 14-25 SU over their L39 (35.9%) after four straight 3-5 Home seasons (2011-2014). And what’s even worse? Oakland’s ATS record at Home over that span. The Advanced Line had Oakland as 6-point faves.

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Free NFL Pick: Over 46½


Saturday, December 26, 2015
Washington Redskins vs. Philadelphia Eagles -3½ (Pinnacle):
 This second Saturday game of the NFL Regular Season sees Kirk Cousins and the upstart Washington Redskins (7-7 SU, 7-7 ATS) head to Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia on Sunday to face DeMarco Murray and the Eagles (6-8 SU, 6-8 ATS) in a huge NFC East showdown and a game which could leave the two tied atop the NFC East with 7-8 records should Sam Bradford and the host Eagles triumph. When these two met earlier this season in Week 5 at FedExField in Landover, Washington won outright, 23-20 as 3-point underdogs, so a little bit of City of Brotherly Love Revenge may be served up here on the day after Christmas when everyone forgets what all the fuss is about and is already tired of the Toys. Although the Science and numbers say this will be close and that Washington looks a little better on Paper (or your Dumb Phone), the Heart and Artistic side of the handicap screams that Philadelphia—who were pummeled by the Cardinals on Sunday Night Football—gets that Revenge here and puts a small dent in the Redskins fake-dream season. Afterall, Philly has that weapon, Darren Sproles. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook made the Eagles 7-point favorites here in their NFL Games of the Year.

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Sunday, December 27, 2015
New York Giants vs. Minnesota Vikings -4 (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook): 
A product of the NFL’s Flex Scheduling, RB Adrian Peterson (Probable) and the Minnesota Vikings (9-5 SU, 11-3 ATS) play host to Eli Manning and the New York Giants (6-8 SU, 7-6-1 ATS) at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on Sunday Night Football in an NFC showdown which is all of a sudden real important to the G-Men after falling to the still unbeaten Panthers, 38-35 in East Rutherford on Sunday in Week 15 play. New York NFC is now the projected 9th seed in the NFC—below the Eagles and Falcons—and a Loss here in the Land of 10,000 Lakes would doom, doom doom Odell Beckham Jr. (Questionable) and the Giants. The last time these two played, New York won and covered, 23-7 as 4-point favorites at Home in 2013 while the last meeting here in Minneapolis, the Giants also won and covered, this time as 5-point chalks back in 2010. Head Coach Tom Coughlin (106-91-4 ATS) and the Giants are 3-1 ATS the L4 in this series and 4-1 ATS the L5 here in Minnesota. Note that the Vikings are one of the NFL’s three heavy Under teams, posting a head-turning 10-3-1 ATS Under mark now as we head into the penultimate week of the NFL’s Regular Season, although Sunday’s 35-17 Win for Minnesota over the Bears here in the Mini Apple went Over the posted Total (43½) and with the visitors having to pull out all the stops just to stay alive, the heavy lean here is the Over when that number is posted later today (Monday).

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Chicago Bears vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers -3, 45½ (Pinnacle): The Chicago Bears (5-9 SU, 6-8 ATS) head to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa in Week 16 to face their former NFC Central division-mate, the Buccaneers (6-7 SU, 7-6 ATS), in a game which would have held some significance to the hosts and Rookie QB Jameis Winston had they not been beaten by the Rams in St. Louis on TNF. The last time these two met, the Bears defeated the Bucs, 21-13 last season at Soldier Field in Chicago, covering as 4½-point favorites ATS, while the last meeting here in Tampa was way back in 2005 and saw the Lovie Smith-coached Bears win outright as 3-point underdogs, 13-10 here at Raymond James Stadium. Now Lovie Smith is the Head Coach of these Buccaneers and this seems like a good game to take gun-slinging QB Jay Cutler and the visiting Bears (4-2 SU Road) either getting the 3 points or maybe on Money Line as Chicago—which was topped by the Vikings on Sunday, 35-17—will want nothing to do with losing to Tampa Bay, no matter how bad or over this Regular Season is or has been. TE Zach Miller (Illness) and WR Alshon Jeffery (Probable) should be good to go here despite missing practice last Wednesday (for Week 15) and with Chicago 4-2 on the Road this season, backing the Bears before hibernation is the call here.

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Free NFL Pick: Bears +3 Even (Bookmaker)


Carolina Panthers -7, 47 (Pinnacle) vs. Atlanta FalconsJulio Jones and the Atlanta Falcons (7-7 SU, 5-9 ATS) welcome Cam Newton and the still unbeaten Carolina Panthers (14-0 SU, 10-4 ATS) to the Georgia Dome on Sunday afternoon for this Week 16 NFC South game which would usually be a showdown, but for this 2015/16 Regular Season has to be characterized as a mini-letdown, despite some storylines (Atlanta can pop Carolina’s perfect bubble and the 7-7 and 7th-seeded Falcons need the W to keep any Wild Card hopes alive.) When these two met earlier this season in Charlotte, RB James Stewart and the Panthers shut out Atlanta, 38-0 easily covering the Point Spread as 8½-point chalks while in this game in Atlanta last season, Carolina rolled to a 34-3 win, getting 3½ points as a live Road underdog. Besides outscoring the Falcons, 72-3 in those aforementioned L2 meetings, the Panthers are 6-1 ATS the L7 in the series but just 2-5 ATS the L7 Away at the Georgia Dome in the Peach State where the Real Housewives of Atlanta make me pull hard for a very quick Meteor Strike. Atlanta—which defeated the Jaguars in Jacksonville to snap an 8-game losing streak on Sunday—has L9 of 10 ATS after starting 4-0 ATS and the Under in Falcons games is 9-0-1 ATS the L10, but with all the peripherals here, the Total seems way riskier than backing a Carolina side coming off a near-miss in New York on Sunday in Week 15.

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Free NFL Pick: Panthers -6½ -113 (Heritage)


Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills -6, 43½ (Pinnacle): Tyrod Taylor and the Buffalo Bills (6-8 SU, 6-7-1 ATS) head to Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo this Sunday afternoon to face the Dallas Cowboys (4-10 SU, 5-9 ATS) in meaningless game now after the Bills 35-25 Loss to the Redskins Sunday in Week 15 play. The last time these two met, the then Chan Gailey-coached Bills were walloped by the Cowboys in Big D, 44-7 in 2011, losing as 5-point underdogs while the last time they played here in upstate New York in Buffalo , the Cowboys won 25-24 in 2007, but the host Bills were getting 10½ points and covered ATS. Dallas will be losing just one hour in Travel (MST to EST), but the Winter Weather in Buffalo (TWC Forecast Sunday: AM Showers, 41°) may make Texas hands trying to catch cold footballs stiff and a little uninterested. The Cowboys are 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series but the Bills are 3-0 ATS the L3 played here at Ralph Wilson Stadium but any interest in taking the Bills dissolved with Sunday’s ugly performance and both of these teams have had disappointing seasons but for Dallas, with Romo’s Collarbone injury, it’s maybe a little more palatable. Any grief 1st-year Buffalo Head Coach Rex Ryan catches, he deserves.

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Jacksonville Jaguars vs. New Orleans Saints -3½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook): Blake Bortles and the Jacksonville Jaguars (5-9 SU, 6-8 ATS) head to New Orleans in Week 16 to face Drew Brees and the host New Orleans Saints (5-8 SU, 6-6-1 ATS; vs. Lions on Monday Night Football; Odds: Saints -3, 51½, Bovada) for this inter-conference game which now has no meaning to either team after Sunday’s action. The last time these two met, the Saints won 23-10 at Jacksonville in 2012 covering ATS as 8-point chalks and New Orleans is 3-0 ATS the L3 in this series and with future Hall of Fame QB Drew Brees 70-41-0 SU at Home (63.1%) at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and New Orleans Superdome in his career—the third best mark of all active NFL QBs behind fellow future Hall of Famers Peyton Manning (109-39 SU) and Tom Brady (114-20 SU)—backing the hosts and all those Skill guys would be the lean now. Jacksonville and Tennessee are still Jacksonville (5-9 SU) and Tennessee (3-11 SU).

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San Francisco 49ers vs. Detroit Lions -8½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook): The Owner-hamstrung San Francisco 49ers (4-10 SU, 6-8 ATS) head three Time Zones east (PST to EST) and 2,298 miles to Ford Field in beautiful Detroit. Michigan to face Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and the Lions (4-9 SU, 4-9 ATS, at Saints on Monday Night Football; Odds: Saints -3, 51½, Bovada) on Sunday afternoon in yet another meaningless game, this one an inter-divisional NFC affair which can only be saved by gambling on if it one chooses. The last time these two faced each other, the Niners won outright 25-19 as 5-point underdogs here in Motown back in 2011 and San Francisco is 5-1-3 ATS the L9 in this series and 4-1 ATS the L5 here in Detroit but those were much better 49ers Rosters who cared and were a player in the NFL. The Advanced Line here was (Lions minus) -6½, so you can see what San Francisco’s 24-14 Home Loss to the Bengals did to perceptions and the Point Spread.

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Cleveland Browns vs. Kansas City Chiefs -12½, 42 (Pinnacle): Is there anyone in the NFL hotter than the Kansas City Chiefs? Along with the Seahawks and Steelers, Alex Smith and the Chiefs (9-5 SU, 8-6 ATS) are a team nobody wants to play right now and probably won’t want to face in the Postseason and if Momentum and Confidence matter, than the Patriots-Packers-Broncos of the world best beware of the Modern Movers and Shakers, the Cardinals, Seahawks, Chiefs, Steelers and Bengals who would love to come on up and snatch that pretty Vince Lombardi Trophy this time around. And they all can and now is the ideal time to do some hard thinking in the Super Bowl Futures book marketplace. Here, Johnny Manziel and the Cleveland Browns (3-11 SU, 4-9-1 ATS) head to Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday to face those upstart Chiefs who have now W8 straight after disposing (and covering) at Baltimore in Week 15 (34-14). The last time these two AFC sides met on the Gridiron, the Rob Chudzinski*-coached (*my free Christmas gift to you readers, on top of that juicy 6-1 ATS this column last week produced Sunday) Browns lost 23-17 here in the Show Me State, but covered by 1 point getting 7 as Road underdogs. Cleveland is 4-1 ATS the L5 in this series, but you can tell from the SuperBook Advanced Line here that this isn’t your Grandma’s Kansas City Chiefs team anymore. The Advanced Line was -11½, and the opener is 12½, so if the Chiefs make Super Bowl 50, at this pace, they may be 24-point chalks over whomever they may face. (This is sarcasm and sad I feel the need to have to point it out to a few. Snap out of it.) KC is already at -14 at 5Dimes and it’s not even 9 a.m. on the West Coast. The Sharps have seemingly fallen in Love with the Chiefs and can you blame them?

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Free NFL Pick: Chiefs -12½ (Pinnacle)


Indianapolis Colts vs. Miami Dolphins No Line: The last time I actually saw an Advanced Line on a Colts game, George Washington had just crossed the Delaware River, so to see that “No Line” here Monday morning has come to be expected. Hopefully Colts starting QB Andrew Luck will be healthy in 2016, but it seems 2015 was a sobering year for the Stanford product who so many had galvanized as The Next Great Thing. We may have been wrong, but History usually shows things like this to just be a blip in the system and expect Luck to be much better in The Future but maybe not as good statistically as he was in his early Colts years. In my mind, those saying Luck has been the best QB to come out of the college ranks in maybe a decade are still right. On Sunday, Indianapolis suffered a horrific Loss to Houston, a game we tabbed here at Sportsbook Review this Summer in our Indianapolis Colts schedule preview “...although Houston will possibly beat the Colts in one of their two meetings this season, quite possibly in Indianapolis at Lucas Oil Stadium in what could be a critical Week 15 game for the Texans.”
Here, on Sunday at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens against the Dolphins (5-9 SU, 4-10 ATS) in Week 16, the problem with the line this time is the possibility that Luck (Kidney) may actually be coming back for Indianapolis who have been rolling with backup QB Matt Hasselbeck and who are the projected 8th seed in the AFC and need everything to go right from this point on just to make the Postseason (Wild Card) to get bounced back to the Hoosier State and one of those little Pink Houses like Jack and Diane. The last time these two AFC sides played, the Colts won outright, 23-20 as 2½-point underdogs in Naptown in 2012 while the last meeting here in Miami-Dade County, Indianapolis won by a 27-23 score, covering ATS by 1 point as 3-point chalks in 2009 and if Luck does come back, the heavy lean is with the Horseshoes as Miami is a good level down from Indianapolis, despite the Colts’ nightmarish season, a byproduct of Injuries and unrealistic Expectations. There are a few good teams in the NFL—the Colts aren’t and haven’t been one of them despite the Records. Living in the AFC South and being the Colts has been like being Jim Morrison in The Doors in that everyone knows you and has no idea who the other three dudes are. Hello, Houston. I remember you when you were a kid down 41-0 to these Fish at Halftime in Miami and when all the Squawking Heads on my Radio were asking where JJ Watt was. He is there fellas and the now the projected AFC 4-seed, the Texans (7-7) are alive and well. Time is funny, eh? Never underestimate the importance of Time and Water. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook had the Colts 1-point chalks in their NFL Games of the Year.


New England Patriots -3, 45½ (Pinnacle) vs. New York Jets: Darrelle Revis and the New York Jets (9-5 SU, 7-6-1 ATS) welcome defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots (12-2 SU, 7-4-3 ATS) and QB Tom Brady (66-48-1 ATS on Road) to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey this Sunday afternoon for this Week 16 AFC East showdown which will matter to both AFC East teams for different reasons. When they met earlier this season in Foxboro, Massachusetts at Gillette Stadium, New England—who signed veteran (former Rams) Free Agent RB Steven Jackson Monday—defeated QB Ryan Fitzpatrick and New York AFC, 30-23, and pushed ATS as 7-point Home favorites. The Jets are 1-4-1 ATS the L6 in this series and with Brady, Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman playing for Homefield Advantage in the AFC, backing the Patriots, who were -3 on the Advanced Line and are a solid (minus) 3 in all sportsbooks here Monday morning Offshore, Online and at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook here in Sin City. This one could be a lotta fun, but the Patriots and Head Coach Bill Belichick (158-15-8 ATS) will be ready.

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Free NFL Pick: Patriots -2½ -150 (Bet365)


Houston Texans No Line vs. Tennessee Titans: JJ Watt, TJ Yates and the Houston Texans (7-7 SU, 7-7 ATS) head to LP Field in Nashville this Sunday afternoon for this AFC South showdown with Rookie QB Marcus Mariota (Right Knee) and the Tennessee Titans (3-11 SU, 4-9-1 ATS) in a game which holds huge significance for the visitors who are now the AFC’s projected 4th—surprise!—seed after saddling the Colts (6-8) in Indianapolis on Sunday. Earlier this season when these two met in Houston—the 4th largest metropolitan area in the US—the Texans defeated the Titans, 20-6, covering the Point Spread easily as 3½-point favorites and Houston is a sparkling 8-1 ATS the L9 in this series and 4-0 ATS the L4 here in the Volunteer State. When the NFL odds finally come out on this Week 16 game, immediately add Houston to your NFL picks as it is the solid prescription as the Titans and Mariota—who will have his Knee examined today (Zach Mettenberger is the Titans backup and played solid Sunday in a Loss at New England, 33-16)—are a money-making 8-24-3 ATS the L35 (25%) games they’ve played...if you fade them. Some simple things aren’t Brain Surgery, algorithm boys.

Free NFL Pick: Texans -


Green Bay Packers vs. Arizona Cardinals -4½, 49½ (5Dimes): Another really good-looking game on the Week 16 slate. Here, Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers (10-4 SU, 9-5 ATS) head to University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale on Sunday afternoon to face Carson Palmer and the host Arizona Cardinals (12-2 SU, 8-6 ATS) in a game between the NFC’s current 3rd and 2nd seeds, respectively. The last time these two NFC giants met, the Cardinals lost 31-17 at Green Bay in 2012, failing to cover ATS as 10½-point underdogs. The Packers and 10th-year Head Coach Mike McCarthy (99-69-4 ATS) are 3-1 ATS the L4 in this series but even if they can win this game in the Sonoran Desert, Green Bay will still be a solid game (11-4 to 12-3) behind Hall of Fame WR Larry Fitzgerald, John Brown and the host Cardinals who lead the NFL in Total Yards (422.9 ypg, 31.8 ppg) and could very well be Super Bowl champions this season with this fun “Go deep man” Offense.

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Free NFL Pick: Over 49 -120 (Bet365)


St. Louis Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks -13½, 41 (Pinnacle): Russell Wilson and the torrid Seattle Seahawks (9-5 SU, 7-6-1 ATS) welcome the Rookie RB Todd Gurley and the St. Louis Rams (6-8 SU, 6-7-1 ATS) to CenturyLink Field in Seattle on Sunday afternoon in an interesting Week 16 NFC West affair which only matters more to the defending NFC champions and hosts who may be able to get a Home-field game or two out of the Postseason. When these two met earlier this season, WR Tavon Austin the Rams upset the Seahawks as 3½-point underdogs in St. Louis, 34-31, while in this game here in the Emerald City last year, Seattle and Marshawn Lynch (Out) won 20-6 as 11-point favorites, covering ATS. The Seahawks are 4-2 ATS in the L6 in this series and with Revenge on their minds, a strong, perennial 2nd Half winds at their backs and Case Keenum likely in at QB for St. Louis, it’s all systems go on the Seahawks and their foaming-at-the-mouth Defense here, even though St. Louis looked really, really good in its Home victory over Tampa Bay last Thursday night.

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Free NFL Pick: Seahawks -13 (Bookmaker)


Pittsburgh Steelers -10½, 47½ (Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook) vs. Baltimore Ravens: NFL Flex Scheduling sent this AFC North pretender out of primetime and straight to the 1 p.m. (EST) Time Slot because the Baltimore Ravens Ravens (4-10 SU, 3-9-2 ATS) have been absolutely abysmal this season for a number of reasons. Here at M&T Bank Stadium in Crab City on Sunday, Big Ben Roethlisberger, WR extraordinaire Antonio Brown and the now really awake Pittsburgh Steelers (9-5 SU, 8-4-2 ATS) will try to keep that Momentum going in a game which up until this particular season held huge significance not only in this rugged division, but in the entire AFC itself. And I believe it was that late great Reggae poet Bob Marley who said, No Flacco, you cry,” or something to that effect. When these two met earlier this season at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, the Steelers lost 23-20 but pushed getting 3 points when Señor Flacco was still healthy for Baltimore. The Steelers are 4-1-1 ATS the L6 in this series and 5-2 ATS the L7 here against the Ravens and will be very motivated in this particular spot, thus the double-digit Point Spread. For some perspective, the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook NFL Game of the Year odds released late each Spring had the Ravens open up as 3-point chalks, so the (current) 13½-point difference in those numbers tells many stories. Expect heavy money from both Sharps and the General Public early on here and finding a (Steelers minus) 10 (The Greek, Heritage, Bookmaker,, William Hill, Wynn Las Vegas) or making a 10 (buying the ½ point) if you have to now with Pittsburgh seems prudent. They are good at scoring and love The Pass and got their Mojo back. And Mojo matters, in both Life and professional Football.

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Free NFL Pick: Steelers -10 (The Greek)


Monday, December 28, 2015
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Denver Broncos -3½, 40½ (Pinnacle): Andy Dalton and the AFC’s projected No. 2-seed, the Cincinnati Bengals (11-3 SU, 10-2-2 ATS) head two Time Zones west (EST to MST) to Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium in Denver next Monday night to face either old QB Peyton Manning or new QB Brock Osweiler and the Broncos (10-4 SU, 8-542 ATS) in this Week 16 AFC inter-divisional thriller which has huge implications for Homefield Advantage in the AFC and will be a tough Loss for the Bengals as it would then knot them and these Broncos (11-3 ATS 1st Quarter Unders) with 11-4 Records in a theoretical fight for the No. 2 seed in the conference and that valuable Home game down the line should it come to that. When these two last met, the Bengals won 37-28 last year in the Queen City, covering ATS and winning outright as 3½-point underdogs. With Denver questioning who to go with at starting QB and having had so much trouble scoring up until Sunday’s 34-27 setback at Pittsburgh, the lean here is with the Bengals just so we’re getting that extra ½ on top of the 3. Still, this one is probably just best watched. The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook opened this at Bengals -6 in its renowned NFL Games of the Year.

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NFL WEEK 16 EARLY WEEK FREE PICKS: Jets-Cowboys Under 44 -150 (Bet365), Bears +3 Even over Buccaneers (Bookmaker), Panthers -6½ -113 over Falcons (Heritage), Patriots -2½ -150 over Jets (Bet365), Texans -X over Titans, Packers-Cardinals Over 49 -120 (Bet365), Seahawks -13 over Rams (Bookmaker), Steelers -10 over Ravens (Bookmaker)

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