Broadway Best Bets is a weekly NFL betting article selecting the five preferred NFL lines of each week. Note: Sports gambling advice is intended for recreational purposes only. All odds and lines are from William Hill US Sportsbook unless otherwise noted.
Week 13 arrives… There is money to be made on this slate of games. Let’s get into our five favorite lines for lucky Week 13.
Broadway 2020 Season Record: 26-30-5
Jacksonville Jaguars at Minnesota Vikings (-10)
Mike Glennon leads the Jaguars into Minnesota looking for the team’s first win since Week 1. The Jaguars were able to hang with Cleveland last week, and Minnesota’s defense has struggled to stop opponents all season.
Vikings games are 8-3 to the Over this year, including 6-0 at home. With two teams that struggle on defense and playmakers on both offenses, this game could end up as a bit of a shootout. Neither Dalvin Cook nor Adam Thielen should be restricted in this game, and D.J. Chark returns for the Jaguars.
I would lean towards a Jacksonville cover, but I really like the Over.
The Pick: Over 51
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears (-3)
The Lions finally fired Matt Patricia. The Bears have committed to Mitch Trubisky as the starting quarterback, again. The Lions nearly beat the Trubisky-led Bears back in Week 1, with no Kenny Golladay, but blew the game late largely due to poor coaching and game management down the stretch.
While the Lions may not have celebrated Patricia’s firing with mimosas, there’s no doubt this locker room will receive a boost similar to the Falcons with Dan Quinn and Texans with Bill O’Brien. And the Bears are a spiraling disaster.
However, while all these signs may point to a Lions win, there are reasons for hesitation. Akiem Hicks is expected to return for the Bears. His impact has been immense as the anchor of that defense. On top of that, D’Andre Swift and Kenny Golladay will both be out again for the Lions. Plus, while 51% of tickets are on the Lions, a large majority of the money is on Chicago to cover. I don’t like either side, and since both offenses are putrid, I’m taking the Under.
The Pick: Under 45
New Orleans Saints (-3) at Atlanta Falcons
The Falcons went to New Orleans just two weeks ago and lost to Taysom Hill’s squad 24-9. Matt Ryan was sacked 8 times as the Saints defense dominated the game.
But it’s hard to beat a team twice in a three-week span, and Taysom Hill is not good. The Falcons have played well since Raheem Morris took over as interim head coach, with Week 11’s loss the rare outlier performance. After seeing two weeks of this version of the Saints offense, at home, in a revenge spot, I think the Falcons get it done. And
The Pick: Falcons +3
Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs (-13.5)
Drew Lock returns for the Denver Broncos after last week’s maskless fiasco led to Kendall Hinton starting in Denver’s 31-3 blowout loss to Taysom Hill and the Saints. Waiting for him is a matchup with the heavy MVP favorite Patrick Mahomes and the 10-1 Chiefs, at Arrowhead, for a rematch after Kansas City destroyed Denver 43-16 in Week 7.
The Chiefs have failed to cover three straight games and opened this week as 14.5-point favorites. The public doesn’t like that number, having since bet it down to 13.5. As such, I’m backing Mahomes to win by a pair of scores at home in a division game against an inferior opponent.
The Pick: Chiefs -13.5
Lock of the Week
New York Giants at Seattle Seahawks (-10.5)
The Seahawks prepare to host the Giants in their second consecutive matchup against the NFC East after beating Philadelphia on Monday night. Daniel Jones is doubtful for the game, meaning Colt McCoy is in line to start for the Giants.
This is a big number for Seattle to cover, especially after they struggled to really light up the scoreboard against the Eagles, but here’s a fun fact: McCoy has the worst cover percentage against the spread of any quarterback in the Super Bowl era (7-21). The Giants will struggle to move the ball, and Seattle should run away with the game.
The Pick: Seattle -10.5
How Betting Lines Work
A quick reminder for anyone unfamiliar with betting lines. “Favorites” are listed next to a negative number, which represents how many points they must win by to “cover the spread.” Titans -2.5, for example, means that Tennessee must beat the Broncos by 3 points or more for bettors to win. Gamblers can also bet on the game’s “total,” betting on whether or not the teams’ combined score in the game is over or under a pre-selected number of points.
“ML” or “moneyline” is not against the spread, just picking the winner of the game. Many people refer to the moneyline as “straight up,” but this can be confusing, because if you’re ever at a betting window in Vegas, a “straight bet” means you are betting on the point spread. Instead of saying “straight up,” you’d want to say “moneyline” when you mean to pick the winner of the game regardless of the point spread to avoid any possible confusion.