There are 18 teams playing in Sunday's early-afternoon games, but only one can be named the Best Value on the Week 13 NFL odds board. Hint: They dress in brown.
Jason's 2015 record as of Dec. 5: 45-41-2 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 25-31 Total
The early bird gets the worm. It's an incredibly tired cliché, but then again, so are award shows. Please forgive us. If you're looking for betting value when you make your NFL Picks, you want to be in the marketplace before everyone else, you want to do your handicapping homework before everyone else, and it's often a good idea to bet on the earliest games. That's when most of your typical “small-market” regional teams are scheduled to play.
With that in mind, we present our special Daytime Edition of the Week 13 BeeVee Awards. There are nine early-afternoon games on Sunday's schedule, and we've already got our five nominees ready to roll:
San Francisco +8.5 vs. Chicago (FOX)
Cincinnati vs. Cleveland +9 (FOX)
Houston +3 vs. Buffalo (CBS)
Baltimore +3.5 vs. Miami (CBS)
N.Y. Jets vs. N.Y. Giants +2.5 (CBS)
And the winners are... the Cleveland Browns! This is the second time the Browns (2-9 SU, 4-7 ATS) have won the BeeVee this year; they paid off handsomely in Week 4, losing 30-27 to the San Diego Chargers as 4.5-point road dogs on the closing line – we even had them at a bargain price of +7. We'll make sure Browns owner Jimmy Haslam receives this coveted BeeVee trophy once he's done with his weekly origami lessons.
Who Does No. 3 Work For?
One of the reasons we went with the Browns in Week 4 was because of Josh McCown. He was coming off the injured list to take his starting gig back from Johnny Manziel, and the stats showed McCown was performing much better than his more celebrated back-up. Now McCown's out for the year with a broken collarbone – and it's Austin Davis getting the start this week instead of Manziel.
Six of one, half a dozen the other. Davis was a third-stringer for the St. Louis Rams last year, but after both Sam Bradford and Shaun Hill were injured, Davis ended up starting eight games for the Rams. They only went 3-5 SU and ATS in those games, although Davis (+47 passing DYAR) performed at slightly above replacement-level. Can't ask for much more than that.
Johnny CFL Football
Slightly above replacement-level is right where McCown (+96 passing DYAR) was performing this year. Manziel? Not so good; he's posted –52 passing DYAR, which is an improvement over last year (–144 DYAR), but still not even close to the god-like status so many of his fans afford him.
The Bengals (9-2 SU, 9-1-1 ATS) have beaten the NFL odds like a drum this season, so we're definitely not going to recommend a large bet in this situation. But the Browns are getting upwards of nine points at home, in a game with a somewhat low total of 43.5 that will be played outdoors in temperatures around the mid-40s. We'll buy that for a dollar.
Free NFL Pick: Take the Browns +10.5 (-130) at Pinnacle