Sunday game previews; Week 18

The first-ever Week 18 regular season is here and it’s not quite the thriller the league would have wanted.

The NFC seeding comes down to 49ers or Saints for the 6/7th seed. A 49ers win gets them in, the Saints need a win a 49ers loss. That would leave Packers, Cowboys, Bucs, Rams/Cardinals (Rams get to two if they win), Eagles (somehow) and one of those two in the NFC playoffs.

The AFC is likely Titans at 1, Chiefs at 2 after they won last night, Bills, Bengals, Patriots, Colts and Chargers or Raiders who play in the only fun-looking game of the night on Sunday night. If the Colts lose as 14 point favourites then it opens it up for others but it’s unlikely despite their terrible form against that piece of crap franchise.

The last week of the season is always tough knowing who’s playing for what and which players are going to be out there.


Check out the playoff competition if you want a bit of interest through the playoffs.

£25 entry with all of it going into the prize fund, just pick you total and winner against the spread.


Chicago Bears +4 @ Minnesota Vikings: 44.5

Justin Fields misses out so he finishes with a 2-8, 7 TDs, 10 INTs, and a 25 QBR. Good work Bears. This is probably Matt Nagy’s final game in charge, he has made them even more boring on offense than they already were. David Montgomery is good and should get work, Cole Kmet 56 receptions, leads his team in redzone targets, and is still without a TD. Dalton and Graham seem to do well together. Graham at 8/1 on Skybet.

It might be Mike Zimmers’ final game as HC in Minnesota as they missed the playoffs. They have said they’re going out to win and Zim will want that to happen to possibly finish his tenure at the Vikes. Thielen is out, Jefferson is obviously rather good as is Cook, there’s talk of Cousins moving next season, I think he stays.

Bears stink, Vikings win and cover.

Cincinnati Bengals +5 @ Cleveland Browns: 37

The BENGALS WON THE AFC NORTH last week so are resting players this week, despite that the line hasn’t moved much. Burrow and Reader are being rested, Mixon and a few others missing through COVID. They don’t need the win so it’s risky picking any props here. Skybet haven’t even got the game listed and most don’t have props, not even TD scorers at this moment. Perine and Chris Evans would be shouts to score. Ja’Marr Chase should win OROY, he needs 12 yards to top Ocho as the leading rec. in Bengals history.

The Browns upgraded at QB for the final match as Baker Mayfield went on IR. Case Keenum gets the start. They should just run the ball, but didn’t even do that last week. There’s a reason this is 37 points. It could be horrible.

Green Bay Packers -3 @ Detroit Lions: 44.5

The Packers have the #1 seed but have said they’ll have their starters out there, probably 2 or 3 drives as Rodgers makes his final push for the MVP.

The Lions have played hard all year and I don’t see it being different in this game. Amon-Ra St. Brown has been brilliant late in the season with either Goff or Tim Boyle. Goff is “probable” to start this week.

If the Packers get out to a decent lead take the Lions in-play. Packers 1st qtr tempting as well. Apparently neither this game or the Bengals game exist according to the books.

Indianapolis Colts -14 @ Jacksonville Jaguars: 43.5

Colts need a win to get into the playoffs. They’ve not won in Jacksonville for 6 years, which is crazy.

They’ll probably be 6th seed. Ashton Dulin the one player I’ve been looking for recently with the Colts, had a target in the back of the endzone at a decent price last week and can get free downfield. 9s the best for him at Unibet.

The Jaguars fans are reportedly going to be dressing as clowns for this game to show their love of the ownership. Marvin Jones needs 4 catches for $500k. Good luck with that, they’ll be short, wide or high, and any on target will be dropped.

Colts win. Well done them.

Pittsburgh Steelers +3.5 @ Baltimore Ravens: 41

A game that could have playoff implications, but probably won’t. A Colts loss makes it interesting. The Steelers have somehow got to 8-7-1 so Tomlin again avoids a losing season. Najee 25 carries, Diontae 10 targets. Friermuth 32 yards and a TD. It’s probably Big Ben’s last game unfortunately, it would be great if they could bring him back.

The Ravens have been obliterated by injuries this year and it cost them in the end as they’ve now lost 5 in a row. Lamar misses out, is there something we don’t know about him this year after “illness” and a twisted ankle de-railed his year. Huntley plays, so a lot of Mark Andrews probably.

Obviously, I want the Ravens to win but this game is probably going to be terrible.

Tennessee Titans -10.5 @ Houston Texans: 43

The Titans get the 1 seed with a win. They haven’t activated Derrick Henry so he won’t be playing, I assume they’ll do that during the week. AJ Brown will be out there for at least the first half.

I really struggle with the Titans, they don’t have the roster but keep grinding out results and it’s earned them the top seed. Mike Vrabel would probably be my coach of the year.

Davis Mills has actually been pretty good for the Texans particularly at the start of games, Rex Burkhead has re-signed for next year (note; re-signed, not resigned, that’s very different).

Titans win, nowt on’t spread.

Washington Football Team -7 @ New York Giants: 38

Yet another terrible match-up in prospect. Washington fell apart down the stretch. Antonio Gibson isn’t on the injury report this week as they try and put the final nail in the Giants coffin.

The Giants are an absolute shambles of a team. Jake Fromm starts.

Washington should win comfortably.

Carolina Panthers +8.5 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 41.5

Panthers are terrible and there’s talk about Rhule being out of the door with an aggressive GM in Carolina, they’re without a ton of players as well, DJ Moore pretty much all that’s left on offense.

The Bucs are probably 3rd seed, they haven’t said about resting anyone, so Brady probably plays half the game at least. Mike Evans needs 54 yards to have his 8th consecutive 1,000 yard season, the player to ever do that at the start of their career, Gronk needs 7 recs and 85 yards to earn an extra 1 million bucks. Cyril Grayson has done well since injuries hit. Ronald Jones is out so Vaughn and Bell will get work.

Bucs win, Panthers stink.

San Francisco 49ers +3.5 @ Los Angeles Rams: 45

The 49ers have won the last 5 in a row against the Rams. They are probably starting Jimmy Garoppolo over Trey Lance as he’s been training this week after his thumb injury. They have a host of players back on both sides of the ball. They should be able to run it, Eli Mitchell and Deebo Samuel on for good games.

A win for the 49ers gets them in the playoffs and makes it 3 teams from the NFC West this year.

Matthew Stafford needs to stop throwing interceptions, they won’t get away with it in the playoffs. A win for them gets them the 2nd seed. Cooper Kupp needs 136 yards for most yards in a season, 12 recs for most receptions. They activated Cam Akers who should return to add to Sony Michel in the backfield.

Should be one of the two good games tonight actually. With the record of Shanny v McVay I’ve got to take the 49ers on the spread even though I like the Rams.

Seattle Seahawks +5.5 @ Arizona Cardinals: 48

https://bookies.com/nfl/picks/seattle-seahawks-at-arizona-cardinals-free-picks-betting-predictions

Rashaad Penny is fun. 13/8 anytime for him.

The Cards are in the playoffs but could win the division if the Rams lose against the 49ers which is possible. If they’re 5th seed they probably face the Cowboys in Dallas where they won last week and Kyler Murray is 8-0 in his career.

Cards win. Why not.

New England Patriots -5.5 @ Miami Dolphins: 40

The Pats are in the playoffs, could move higher up the seedings with a win and if the Bills lose to the Jets will sneak the division. They don’t have the best record in Miami but it’s usually earlier in the season. Mac Jones might snatch OROY with a win.

The Dolphins will want a win to get a winning record on the year and stopping the Pats is always good. Brian Flores vs. his former team as well.

Under is the only bet here really, good defenses against average young QBs.

New Orleans Saints -3.5 @ Atlanta Falcons: 40

The Saints need a win to have a chance of the playoffs. They should get it, but it definitely won’t be pretty. I’d imagine they’ll be running a lot to drain clock and scrape out of this with a win. Given the amount of injuries they’ve had this year it’s been decent coaching from Payton. Taysom has probably played himself out of ever being a starting QB though, he’s just not very good.

Kyle Pitts needs 50 yards to beat Mike Ditkas rookie record for a TE. He thinks he’ll play despite a hamstring injury last week, wouldn’t be shocked if he tweaked it again. Patterson the only other player of note as the Falcons stink like a butt.

Saints win a snoozer, under on total.

New York Jets +16.5 @ Buffalo Bills: 40.5

Zach Wilson hasn’t thrown an INT in 4 weeks, well done him. He’s only thrown 2 TDs in that time, but it’s an improvement on the rest of the year. The run game has been surprisingly good with Michael Carter doing well.

The run game has been a point of interest for the Bills too and they’ve been trying to force Devin Singletary in recent weeks to add some balance to their offense. Josh Allen rushed in for a couple last week.

They need the win, but there’s a chance they pull starters if they get out to a big lead which is possible.

Los Angeles Chargers -3 @ Las Vegas Raiders: 49.5

The only game with interest on both sides. It’s been well publicised this week that if the Colts lose they could play out a tie by kneeling all game, and both teams get into the playoffs. I think there’s a less than 1% of that ever happening and the chat/fake worry has been ridiculous.

Justin Herbert is the better QB and last week threw the most TDs in a Chargers season where they beat the Broncos. They have the better roster too, Ekeler looks good still, Allen and Williams are a good duo, they’re not great at TE but Herbert tends to spread the ball around.

The Raiders keep grinding out results and have the most walk-off wins in since the merger in 1970 with 5 and have won their last 3 games by 2,3 and 4 points. So a 5 point win is coming here? Not much to talk about on their side, it’s been a flukey run and they should get spanked here. Hunter Renfrow is reliable, Josh Jacobs all right.

Chargers win, cover and hit the playoffs as the 7th seed.

Bets

There’s not a single game over 50 points this weekend, so trying to find spots for Overs is probably a decent idea, both Saturday games went easily over the totals, it’s not just offenses that are resting players, defense will be weakened as well.

If you’re betting the main lines, then 1st Quarter/Half betting and in-play is probably the key to making money tonight.

There’s a lot of random-ness this week, highlighted by JaQuan Hardy and Ito Smith scoring for the Cowboys last night as they padded some stats by playing their starters for most of an utterly pointless romp against a hugely depleted Eagles side. Dak throwing 5 TDs to try and snatch back Comeback player of the year is laughable, well done them.

There’s a distinct lack of props/TD scorers as well as the books are cowards and aren’t risking a lot.

Just 1 pt on each as random punts, maybe a 0.5 L15, because who knows.

  • Ashton Dulin – 8/1 (365/vBet)
  • Jimmy Graham – 8/1 (Skybet)
  • Matt Breida – 12/1 (Skybet)
  • Zach Wilson – 9/1 (PP)

One addition and probably my favourite at the prices.

Cyril Grayson 5/1 anytime (2pt stake) and 50/1 2 or more (1 pt stake) on Skybet. 365 is the only other place pricing up Grayson and he’s 2/1 there after scoring last week.

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