It's the last week of the NFL season and as we look for the value plays, we need to take into account that some teams such as the Indianapolis Colts have nothing to play for, therefore we need to be very careful when placing our betting picks.
Oakland Raiders (3-12) vs. Denver Broncos (11-4)
This is a total statement game as the Broncos, who are coming off of a 37-28 loss to Cincinnati, don't want to go to the playoffs limping in. The weather was really poor when Cincy defeated the Broncos, but Denver let Jeremy Hill run circles around them and one thing that's really noticeable as of late has been the play of Peyton Manning. Manning's passes simply don't look crisp and players like Julius Thomas have been invisible. Oakland wants a good draft pick. Look for the Broncos to crush the Raiders at home.
NFL Pick- Denver 14 at BookMaker
Arizona Cardinals (11-4) vs. San Francisco 49'ers (7-8)
You have to feel really bad for the Cardinals. Last season, they didn't make the playoffs at 10-6 and this season, they had the best record in the NFL before Carson Palmer went down with an injury. Now, Drew Stanton is also out. Consider this situation when looking over the NFL odds. The Cardinals are in the playoffs but down to their third string quarterback , Ryan Lindley, and they're going nowhere. I told myself that I'm not picking this team the rest of the season.
Now, the Cardinals face an underachieving 49'ers team at 7-8 and the Niners are almost favored by a touchdown. It just shows you how little respect the odds makers have for Arizona as Jim Harbaugh will be out at the end of the season and Colin Kaepernick looks like an average NFL quarterback. I'm siding with the Cardinals in this spot as they've shown major heart despite the setbacks.
NFL Pick- Arizona +6.5 at 5Dimes
Jacksonville Jaguars (3-12) vs. Houston Texans (8-7)
The Jags really missed out on a major opportunity to get a top draft pick with a meaningless win over Tennessee last week and now they face a Texans team that has something to play for. It is not likely even with a win that the Texans will get into the playoffs but I've seen stranger things happen. Houston has the combination of Arian Foster with Andre Johnson and DeAndre Hopkins on offense and a great defense led by the best defensive player in the game in J.J. Watt. Jacksonville doesn't stand a chance and this is an early game, therefore the Texans will go all out, not knowing their fate. Look for a Houston blowout.
NFL Pick- Houston -8 at Bovada
New York Jets (3-12) vs. Miami Dolphins (8-7)
The New York Jets have had so many opportunities to beat elite teams and last week they had New England right where they wanted them and let the Pats get away with a 1 point loss. It's the Jets decision making that's the problem and that's why this will be Rex Ryan and Geno Smith's last game as Jets. However, this is a team of irony and the kind of team that can defeat Miami in a game which is totally meaningless to the Dolphins other than revenge for last season. I expect the Jets to keep this game close as they always play Miami tough, so add them to your NFL picks.
NFL Pick- Jets +6.5 at 5Dimes