With the holiday season upon us, Joe Osborne, Iain MacMillan and Pamela Maldonado will unwrap some of their best bets for the week’s action.
Joe has his weekly 6-point teaser, and one of the teams is the Chicago Bears, who are on the road to face the Jacksonville Jaguars. With the Bears being a favorite of just over a touchdown, this is an excellent spot to get them down to a much simpler number. Chicago has won two in a row, snapping a six-game losing skid that derailed their season. Don’t look now, but Mitch Trubisky is playing solid football. He has four touchdowns and just one interception in his last two games, and the emergence of David Montgomery in the backfield has certainly helped. The other team Joe has is an AFC road team that can be teased up to a great number.
The lone Christmas Day game in the NFL sees the Minnesota Vikings hit the road to face the New Orleans Saints. Drew Brees returned to the Saints lineup last week and didn’t look like the Drew Brees we’ve been accustomed to seeing, completing just 15 of 34 pass attempts. The Vikings come into this game having gone 2-3 in their last five games. Rookie wideout Justin Jefferson has been a revelation, putting up 1,182 yards receiving and seven touchdowns. Joe is looking at a bet on the total in this game.
Another total that Joe likes is for the game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys. The Eagles offense has looked better with Jalen Hurts under center. The former Sooner has rejuvenated this Eagles team, which has split his two starts with one win and one loss. He should be able to move the ball against a porous Cowboys defense that has allowed the second-most points per game in the league at 30.9. This game will be played in Dallas, and Joe has some stats about the totals in Dallas home games that can solidify this bet.
It’s a huge showdown in Seattle as the top spot in the NFC West is on the line with the Rams facing the Seahawks. Seattle can clinch the division with a win, while the Rams can clinch a playoff spot with a win and keep their division hopes alive. These two teams have a history of tight games, and with that in mind, Iain is looking at the moneyline for this game.
One of the more fan-friendly games this week has the Atlanta Falcons on the road to take on the Kansas City Chiefs. It looks like we’ll finally see Le’Veon Bell with a prominent role in the Chiefs attack, as Clyde Edwards-Helaire is out. Kansas City’s offense is tough to slow down for a good defense, let alone this Falcons defense. Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill sit second and fifth in receiving yards on the season, with Kelce a mere six yards behind DeAndre Hopkins for the top spot. Iain is looking at the total for his bet in this game.
In a Boxing Day affair, the Miami Dolphins square off with the Las Vegas Raiders. The Dolphins find themselves in the thick of the playoff hunt and need a win to maintain their position. The Raiders need a win just to keep alive their slim hopes of making it to the postseason. The Dolphins’ skill position players took a hit last week when DeVante Parker and Mike Gesicki were out along with Myles Gaskin. But the Fish managed to put up 22 points against the Patriots thanks in large part to 250 yards on the ground and three rushing touchdowns. The Raiders could be without starting quarterback Derek Carr, so Marcus Mariota might get the nod. He looked impressive last week against the Chargers but will face a much stiffer challenge this week as the Dolphins allow the fewest points per game in the league at 18.4.
It’s college football bowl season, and Pamela has a bet on the Camellia Bowl between the Buffalo Bulls and the Marshall Thundering Herd. The Bulls are 4-point faves in this game, and a lot of that, well, most of that, has to do with Jaret Patterson. The stud running back will presumably wrap up his collegiate career in this game and will look to go out with a bang. He has 1,072 yards on the ground and 19 touchdowns in just six games this season.
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