By Nick Sparrow
Welcome to another week of football betting. Before we get into the most interesting bets of Week 12, let’s take a look and see how we did last week.
Our first best bet was a 10-point three-team teaser with:
New Orleans Saints (+2.5) over Washington Redskins
Cincinnati Bengals (+12.5) over Denver Broncos
Navy Midshipmen (+27.5) over Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Navy lost by only seven on Saturday so we were certainly off to a great start. The Saints game was the only real game we had to sweat out as they found themselves down 15 points with under six minutes left in the game. The Saints were also missing star rookie cornerback Marshon Lattimore, who injured his ankle on the team’s first defensive series. Still, the Saints came charging back as they scored 15 points in the final three minutes and went on to win by three in overtime. The Bengals also won outright with a 20-17 road victory over the Broncos, not only sealing this teaser but proving my upset special to be correct.
Our second best bet was the Philadelphia Eagles (-3.5) over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night. The Eagles found themselves down by three points at halftime but dominated the Cowboys in the second-half as they outscored their division rivals 30-0.
This week. Games of the Week:
Minnesota Vikings (-3) @ Detroit Lions
Thanksgiving Day kicks off which an NFC North matchup between the first-place Minnesota Vikings and the second-place Detroit Lions. While the Vikings look to be one of the top contenders in NFC to get a first-round bye in the playoffs and hold two games over the Lions, Detroit has defeated Minnesota in each of their last three matchups including last season on Thanksgiving Day. Additionally, each of those three games have been decided by a single score or less, with an average margin of victory of just over 5 points. I actually like the Vikings to win this game despite the Lions recent success against them, but with how close these games have been I am not comfortable laying any points in this game.
New Orleans Saints @ Los Angeles Rams (-2.5)
The Saints became the first team in NFL history to win eight straight games after starting the season 0-2, so it is fairly surprising that they are underdogs in this game. A big reason for that could be the injured Marshon Lattimore, who has been a phenom this season. Lattimore isn’t officially out but the Saints re-signed cornerback Sterling Moore so it doesn’t look great for Lattimore’s availability on Sunday. Still, the Rams are coming off of a 24-7 loss to the Minnesota Vikings in which they also lost wide receiver Robert Woods. Woods is the Rams’ leading receiver by over 220 yards and also leads the team in receiving touchdowns. The Saints are just finding ways to win and with Woods out and wide receiver Cooper Kupp struggling for Los Angeles, I think New Orleans finds a way to win again whether Lattimore plays or not.
Best Bets: 10-point Three-Team Thanksgiving Day Teaser –
Detroit Lions (+13) over Minnesota Vikings
Los Angeles Chargers (+10) over Dallas Cowboys
New York Giants (+17) over Washington Redskins
This isn’t exactly a best bet because the Chargers-Cowboys makes me nervous simply because it remains unclear if Tyron Smith will play or not. Still, this a fun way to possibly make some money as the majority of people will be watching these games anyways on Thanksgiving Day. With a mediocre slate of games asides from the Lions-Vikings game, at least in my opinion, having some money down will certainly make watching the games a more exciting experience.
Payout: Bet $50 to win $41.67
Four-Team Moneyline Parlay –
Carolina Panthers (-211) over New York Jets
Cincinnati Bengals (-370) over Cleveland Browns
Philadelphia Eagles (-840) over Chicago Bears
Pittsburgh Steelers (-900) over Green Bay Packers
Yes, I’m the Teaser King but I love moneyline parlays. NFL moneyline parlays are usually the safest bets but I love this one in Week 12. Aside from the Cincinnati-Cleveland game, we are betting on three teams with a combined record of 24-6 to defeat three teams with a combined of 12-18. Five of those wins also come from the Packers, who have only won one of those five games without starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers. It seems that the biggest risk would be betting on the 4-6 Bengals, so it is understandable if you wanted to leave them out (although the payout odds would significantly drop). Really it depends on how bad you believe the Cleveland Browns are just 4-38 since the start of 2015 and have not beaten an AFC North opponent since 2015 (Week 5 against the Baltimore Ravens) and have not beaten Cincinnati since 2014 (Week 10).
Payout: Bet $100 to win $132.80
Best Bets 2-0 (+$174.24)
Upset Special 1-0