Week 13 has the makings of a very pivotal week for some of the NFL’s playoff contenders and playoff hopefuls with seven divisional games on tap.
The oddsmakers at SI Sportsbook seem to expect some impressive wins by the favorites as six teams are favored by a touchdown or more.
How do our writers feel about that?
Of our six analysts, one picked one of those favorites on five separate occasions. Will this week follow Week 12’s theme of bucking the season long trend of seeing the underdogs cover? Apparently, the majority of us think it will.
Before getting to our picks, we always feel it is important to alert our readers on where we agree and disagree:
Week 13 Bets we agree on:
- Three of our writers are in on the Cardinals (-7.5) over the Bears
- The Rams are laying 13 points and three of us are taking Los Angeles
- San Francisco has been hot and two of us are buying the 49ers at -3.5
Week 13 Bets we disagree on:
- Two sub-.500 teams take the field in Miami with the Dolphins and Giants. Two of our writers are on opposite ends of the 4.5 point spread.
- Philadelphia plays its second consecutive game at MetLife Stadium, and two of our writers are on opposite ends of the 6.5 point spread.
- Baltimore is giving Pittsburgh 4.5 points, and two of us are taking the Steelers with the points while one of us is on the Ravens.
- Sunday Night football features the Chiefs and Broncos, and two of us are grabbing Denver +9.5 while one is laying the points and going with Kansas City.
- For the AFC East matchup Monday Night, two of our staff members are on the Patriots getting three points but one is sticking with Buffalo -3.
Week 13 Best Bets
Here are our criteria for picking games:
• All odds from SI Sportsbook
Each analyst must pick five games
• Three of the bets must be against the spread or over/under
• The remaining two picks (if all five aren't ATS or O/U) can be on the moneyline (but at least one of those picks must be on an underdog)
• We believe transparency is paramount in the world of sports betting, which is why we entrust Sharp Rank to keep track of all our picks/performance
Jennifer Piacenti’s Best Bet: Cardinals -7.5
Kyler Murray is expected back, but even if he isn’t Colt McCoy has led this offense admirably. The Cardinals continue to prove they are great team and still have the best win percentage - even with their star QB missing the last three games. Arizona's defense is holding their opponents to 18.4 points per game, while Chicago is only scoring 16.3 per game. WOW. And who is starting for the Bears? Both QBs are limited and Allen Robinson is doubtful. It doesn’t inspire much confidence in an already lackluster offense. Meanwhile, Arizona averages 28.2 points per game. Cardinals cover the spread.
Jen’s Season Record: 44-36
Casey Olson’s Best Bet: Dolphins -4
The Giants head south to take on the Dolphins, who have won won four straight. While these two teams are on the cusp of playoff contention, both are lackluster offensively, sitting in the bottom-third in yards per play. It doesn't help that Daniel Jones will miss this game and will be replaced by Mike Glennon, who went 0-5 as a starter last season.
-Giants are 0-7 (L7) Against The Spread (ATS) on the road against an opponent on a 3+ game winning streak.
-Dolphins are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games.
-Dolphins are 9-1 (L10) ATS at home vs. teams with a losing record.
Casey’s Season Record: 34-30-1
Will Laws's Best Bet: Giants-Dolphins U 40.5
I know this is a low number to go for the under. But these defenses have hit their stride over their last five games—Giants: 15.2 points allowed per game; Dolphins: 14.4 points allowed per game—and these offenses are nothing to write home about, especially with Mike Glennon starting for the injured Daniel Jones. Glennon has lost his last seven starts dating back to 2017, with his teams have averaging 17.7 points over that span.
Will's Season Record: 22-12
Frank Taddeo’s Best Bet: Bengals -3
The Bengals, who are 4-2 ATS in their last six games, will dominate the Chargers on the ground. The Bengals own the 17th-ranked rushing attack (111.9 rushing yards per game) featuring Joe Mixon and will face the Chargers' league-worst rushing defense allowing 145.3 yards per game. Los Angeles has burned bettors of late, posting a 1-5 ATS mark over their last six games. Justin Herbert and the Chargers will not make it out of the jungle with a win.
Frank’s Season Record: 31-41
Bill Enright’s Best Bet: Steelers +4.5
Baltimore’s 8-3 record is the best in the AFC, but it is just .500 ATS and 0-5 when favored by at least 4.5 points. On the flip side, the Steelers are 3-ATS when getting 4.5 points or more. This is an AFC North battle with Pittsburgh not only at home, but very much in the running for a Wildard spot. There’s a case to be made that the Steelers win outright, but I’m not going to be selfish and take +175 on the moneyline. Instead, I’ll play it safe and take the points because you can’t go broke making a small profit.
Bill’s Season Record: 30-31-2
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