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There is a free $5K Sportsbook Pool for NFL Week 14. You have to pick each of the games on Sunday against the spread, and the higher you finish on the leaderboard, the more money you earn.
Let’s take a look at all the contests slated for Sunday, including my five personal favorites.
Las Vegas Raiders @ Kansas City Chiefs (-9.5)
The Pick: Chiefs -9.5
There was a point in this season where there were major question marks involving the Chiefs. Their defense was a disaster, allowing at least 29 points in each of their first five games, but they’ve turned things around in a big way. They’ve allowed 17 points or fewer in six of their past seven games, including nine points or fewer in three of their past four. In short, they’ve gone from one of the worst defenses to one of the best from a points perspective.
Their biggest question marks have been on offense, which is weird to say with Patrick Mahomes at quarterback and Andy Reid at head coach. They’ve still put up enough points to record five straight wins, and their best performance came against the Raiders. They racked up 41 points in that contest, and they outgained the Raiders by nearly 150 yards.
The Chiefs were able to beat the Raiders by 27 points on the road, so asking them to win by double-digits at home isn’t farfetched.
Seattle Seahawks (-6.5) @ Houston Texans
The Pick: Seahawks -6.5
The Seahawks were finally able to turn things around last week, recording a seven-point victory over a good 49ers squad. That brought them to just 4-8 for the season, but a few of those losses came with Russell Wilson out of the lineup.
That said, this pick is all about fading Davis Mills. He’ll draw the start at quarterback for the Texans, and he’s been a disaster so far this season. The third-round rookie out of Stanford has averaged just 5.3 adjusted yards per attempt this season, and he’s recorded more interceptions than touchdown passes. He’s also taken 22 sacks, so the Texans’ offense has been markedly worse with him under center than Tyrod Taylor.
This line is up to Seahawks -8.5 on DraftKings Sportsbook, but we can still grab them laying less than a touchdown in this pool.
San Francisco 49ers @ Cincinnati Bengals (-1.5)
The Pick: 49ers +1.5
Both of these teams are coming off embarrassing losses last week. The Bengals were hammered at home by the Chargers, while the 49ers lost to the slumping Seahawks. The Seahawks had dropped six of their previous seven games, so they’re not the same team that they’ve been in the past.
Still, there are far more reasons to be optimistic about the 49ers than the Bengals at this point. They’ve played some excellent football recently, and they rank seventh in Football Outsiders DVOA. The Bengals have a better record, but they’re just 19th in DVOA.
The 49ers are also expected to get Deebo Samuel back this week, which would be a huge boost for their offense. He’s been used all over the formation this season – even receiving carries out of the backfield – and he’s been one of the most dangerous skill-position players in the league.
Ultimately, the 49ers stand out as one of the more undervalued teams in football at the moment, while the Bengals are one of the most overvalued. I’ll gladly side with the 49ers in this matchup.
Baltimore Ravens (-1.5) @ Cleveland Browns
The Pick: Browns +1.5
Both of these teams entered with big expectations this season, but they have not lived up to them. The Ravens lost to the slumping Steelers last week, dropping them to 8-4 on the year. That’s still good enough for first place in the division – and the No. 3 seed in the AFC – but the advanced metrics suggest they’re much worse than their record indicates. They rank just 16th in Football Outsiders DVOA, and they own a Pythagorean Win Expectation of just 6.6-5.4.
The Ravens also have some incredibly fortunate wins on their resume. They beat the Lions thanks to a 66-yard field goal from Justin Tucker as time expired. They overcame a 16-point fourth-quarter deficit vs. the Colts. If not for those two extremely unlikely wins, the perception of the Ravens would be a lot different.
The Browns have struggled of late – particularly on offense – but it’s possible they could be better coming off their bye. At a minimum, Baker Mayfield should be a bit healthier. The Browns are the better team per DVOA, so I don’t think they should be underdogs in this matchup.
Detroit Lions @ Denver Broncos (-7.5)
The Pick: Broncos -7.5
The Lions are coming off their first win of the season last week, but I doubt they’ll be able to make it two in a row. Not only could there be a slight letdown now that they’re finally off the schneid, but they’re also expected to be without T.J. Hockenson, D’Andre Swift, and Jamaal Williams. Those are arguably their three best offensive players.
This line is up to Broncos -10.0 on DraftKings Sportsbook, so we’re getting a bit of spread value as well.
Here’s who I’m targeting for the rest of the Sunday games. Remember, we’re looking to beat the competition and climb up the leaderboard, so I’ll be looking to gain leverage on the field and fade the public in situations where I don’t see a huge edge on the spread.
New Orleans Saints (-6.5) @ New York Jets
Pick: Jets +6.5
Dallas Cowboys (-4.5) @ Washington Football Team
Pick: Cowboys -4.5
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Tennessee Titans (-8.5)
Pick: Jaguars +8.5
Atlanta Falcons @ Carolina Panthers (-2.5)
Pick: Panthers -2.5
New York Giants @ Los Angeles Chargers (-7.5)
Pick: Chargers -7.5
Buffalo Bills @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3.5)
Pick: Bills +3.5
Chicago Bears @ Green Bay Packers (-11.5)
Pick: Packers -11.5
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