NFL Week 3: Cowboys favored, Patriots underdogs

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Dak Prescott has breathed fresh life into the Dallas Cowboys, but the rookie QB is up against some dubious home-field trends as well as the Chicago Bears in a Week 3 Sunday Night Football betting matchup.

The Cowboys are listed as 4.5-point favorites against the Bears with a total of 44.5 points at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The Cowboys are a dismal 2-10-2 against the spread in their last 14 games at AT&T Stadium, according to the OddsShark NFL Database. Dallas is 5-2 straight-up when coming off an outright win as an underdog. The Bears are 6-2 ATS over their last eight road games.

With New England turning to No. 3 QB Jacoby Brissett, the Houston Texans are 2.5-point favorites against the Patriots with a total of 41 for their Thursday Night Football matchup. The Texans are 1-5 ATS in their last six games against the Patriots. The Patriots are 9-3 SU in their last 12 games vs. teams with winning records.

With Adrian Peterson (meniscus) likely out, the Carolina Panthers are 7.5-point betting favorites against the Minnesota Vikings, with a total of 43. The Panthers are 6-1-1 ATS in their last eight games after losing the previous game in a matchup. The visiting team is 2-5 SU and ATS in its last seven games in this matchup.

The Green Bay Packers are also favored by 7.5, with a total of 48, at home against the Detroit Lions. The Packers are 1-4 ATS in their last five home games. The Lions are 1-24 SU in their last 25 road games vs. Green Bay.

In a Marcus Mariota vs. Derek Carr QB matchup, the Tennessee Titans are 1.5-point favorites against the Oakland Raiders, with a total of 46.5. The Raiders are 1-7 SU in their last eight road games after a road win. The Titans are 0-11 SU and ATS in their last 11 games after an ATS win.

The New York Giants are favored by 4.5 points against the Washington Redskins, with a total of 46.5. The Giants have a streak of being 7-0 SU as a favorite of 4.5 points or more. The Redskins are 2-10 SU in their last 12 road games against the Giants.

The Kansas City Chiefs are favored by three points against the New York Jets, with a total of 43.5. The Jets are 2-10 SU in their last 12 games after winning as an underdog.  The Chiefs are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games after winning the previous game in a matchup.

And the Pittsburgh Steelers are favored by five points vs. the Philadelphia Eagles, with a total of 46. The Eagles are 12-5 SU in their last 17 games at home after a win at home. The Steelers are 5-1 SU and ATS in their last six games against the NFC.

WATCH: Seahawks’ Paul Richardson pulls in absurd touchdown catch against Lions

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It took until the first round of the playoffs, but we may finally have our winner for catch of the year.

On 4th and goal at the Lions’ 2, Russell Wilson lobbed up a pass to Paul Richardson, who was completely covered by Tavon Wilson.

Richardson stuck out his left hand and pulled in a miraculous grab to give Seattle the lead.

[Watch the rest of the second half from Seattle on NBC Sports Live]

Simply amazing.

 

Seahawks, Texans are the betting favorites for Saturday’s Wild Card games

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The Seattle Seahawks’ sporadic scoring output is something to consider when looking at the big point spread against the Detroit Lions. The Seahawks are listed as eight-point favorites against the Lions in their NFC wild card matchup set for Saturday at CenturyLink Field, according to sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The Seahawks are 7-0 straight-up in their last seven home games against teams from the Eastern Time Zone and the Lions are 2-5 against the spread in their last seven road games. However, Seattle scored 10 or fewer points four times at home this season, and none of those instances came against a premier defense.

The Lions, 9-7 SU and 8-8 ATS, are coming into the playoffs on a three-loss skid. One boon to the Lions’ chances is that the Seahawks, without free safety Earl Thomas, have been hopeless at stopping deep passes. Quarterback Matthew Stafford should be able to hit a few deep shots to the likes of Golden Tate, Marvin Jones and T.J. Jones in order to compensate for a nearly nonexistent running game. That could help the Lions, who are 0-8 SU in their last eight playoff games, make it interesting.

The Seahawks, 10-5-1 SU and 7-8-1 ATS, have never lost at home in the playoffs during the Pete Carroll/Russell Wilson era. One can reasonably expect they will find some of their familiar postseason form. Seattle’s pass protection and run blocking has been problematic, so there could be opportunities to disrupt Wilson’s timing. Otherwise, WR Doug Baldwin and TE Jimmy Graham could have big nights.

The total has gone under in eight of the Lions’ last 10 games. The total has gone over in five of the Seahawks’ last six games in the playoffs.

Elsewhere, the Houston Texans are listed as four-point favorites against the Oakland Raiders in Saturday’s AFC wild card matchup.

The Raiders, 12-4 SU and 10-6 ATS, will have rookie third-stringer Connor Cook become the first NFL QB to get his first career start in the playoffs. With Cook playing instead of Derek Carr (broken fibula), Houston might not have to honor the deep pass threat and can thus commit to containing RB Latavius Murray and limiting the damage on short-range passes to WR Amari Cooper and WR Michael Crabtree.

The fact erratic Brock Osweiler is back in at QB might account for why the Texans, who are 9-7 SU and 6-9-1 ATS, are not a bigger favorite against a hobbled team. The Raiders simply haven’t stopped anyone when teams have schemed to slow down edge rushers Khalil Mack and Bruce Irvin. If Osweiler can curb his tendency to be overaggressive and allow WR DeAndre Hopkins and RB Lamar Miller to have opportunities, the Texans should be able to move the ball steadily.

Keep in mind, though, that the visiting team has gone 4-0 SU and ATS in the last four editions of this matchup. The total has gone over in seven of the Raiders’ last 10 games.  The total has gone under in nine of the Texans’ last 12 games at home.