The NFL’s Week 13 schedule is centered around a perfect matchup between the 49ers and Eagles for control of the NFC. But we are also looking at the Chargers taking on the Patriots and a rematch in the AFC South between the Colts and Titans.
We make our best bets for Week 13 below, and you can always find these bets at top-rated sportsbooks.
- Chargers-Patriots Under 40.5 Points (-110) at Caesars Sportsbook
- Colts-Titans Over 43 (-110) at Bet365
- 49ers-Eagles to Both Score 1 Touchdown in Each Half (+170) at Bet365
Chargers Take Sloppy Play to Low-Scoring New England
The Chargers (4-7) and Patriots (2-9) have both certainly seen better days than this. But someone’s losing streak should end in this one, as the Chargers travel for an early body clock game in New England. The last 2 games for the Patriots have been a race to 10 points as they are the first team since the 2000 Steelers to play back-to-back games where neither team scored more than 10 points.
The Chargers are a 6-point road favorite, but we are focused on that total of 40.5 points.
Sunday, December 3, 2023 – 01:00 PM EDT at Gillette Stadium
Chargers Look Rough
It was a bit of a surprise that Carolina coach Frank Reich was the one to be fired on Monday. It sure felt like there was a chance that Brandon Staley would get the axe in Los Angeles after an ugly 20-10 loss at home to the Ravens on Sunday night.
Staley has seemingly lost control of the team. The defense was horrible against Detroit in a 41-38 loss where Justin Herbert’s great day was wasted by Staley’s defense. Herbert’s great game in Green Bay was wasted by his skill players fumbling and dropping key passes all day.
But against Baltimore, it was the Chargers’ best players who kept fumbling, including Herbert himself, Keenan Allen, and Austin Ekeler. The Chargers actually got a good game out of the defense against a Baltimore team that had scored 31 points in 5 straight games. But Herbert was unable to beat the pass rush to even get into field goal range late when it was a 13-10 score.
The Chargers have lost 3 in a row and now they must deal with a putrid New England team that has had their number for many years.
Patriots Have Owned Chargers Under Belichick
The New England offense is abysmal and there is virtually no hope at quarterback. Mac Jones was benched again for Bailey Zappe against the Giants, but Zappe barely moved the offense. Even when he set up a game-tying 35-yard field goal, the rookie kicker missed it to end the game. You know things are rotten in New England when even the kicker can’t come through on a 35-yard kick.
But at least the Patriots have played strong defense again these last 2 weeks, only allowing 10 points in each loss. They are the first team to lose back-to-back games when only allowing 10 points since the 1993 Patriots, who were coached by Bill Belichick’s mentor Bill Parcells.
Belichick will just have to hope his defense can capitalize on these mistakes the Chargers have been making and keep this score down. But outside of pitching a shutout, it is hard to say what is low enough for this New England offense to produce a win.
A 20-13 game would suffice at this point to get something entertaining from the Patriots again. But we like the under a lot as the Chargers are making too many mistakes, and the Patriots are simply not good enough to score no matter which quarterback plays.
Enjoy the comedy of errors in this one.
Colts and Titans Look to Go Over This Time
When these teams met in Week 5, it was only a 23-16 final, but that was misleading as both teams only had 7 drives each. They actually moved the ball quite well but had to settle for too many field goals.
Of course, that was with Ryan Tannehill and Anthony Richardson at quarterback. Richardson was injured during that game and replaced by Gardner Minshew, and Tannehill has lost his job after an injury to rookie Will Levis.
But that is not going to deter us from looking at the over 43 in this AFC South rematch where the Colts are a 1.5-point road favorite.
Sunday, December 3, 2023 – 01:00 PM EDT at Nissan Stadium
Home Sweet Home for Titans?
The 2023 Titans have a humorous scoring split to their season:
- In 7 games played away from Nashville, the Titans have yet to score more than 16 points.
- In 4 games played at home in Nashville, the Titans have scored 17, 27, 27, and 28 points.
The 17-10 win last week against Carolina was the lowest-scoring home game for the Titans this year, but part of that was Carolina being a lousy offense and the Titans just trying to protect the lead with their rookie quarterback.
We understand there may be skepticism over Levis in a shootout, but it is reassuring that the Titans had a season-high 259 net passing yards in Indy in Week 5. The Colts have struggled on defense this year and are 27th in points allowed. There really is no area in which the Colts rank highly on defense this season.
The Colts also allowed Titans wideout DeAndre Hopkins to go off for 140 yards, so maybe he can have another big game as the favorite target for Levis. Let’s not forget Levis started this season with 4 touchdown passes against Atlanta, so maybe he can rip some deep ones in this matchup too.
Why the Colts Should Score Enough
In such a low-scoring season, the Colts have been reliably good at scoring 20 points. They have done it in every game except for the 10-6 win in Germany over New England. The Colts just scored 27 points last week against Tampa Bay and they had 23 points on the Titans in Week 5.
The Colts also had 429 yards of offense against Tennessee, their 2nd-highest total in any game this season. It is true that running back Jonathan Taylor is expected to miss this game with an injury, but that should not slow things down. In fact, it was Zack Moss who exploded in that Week 5 game with 165 yards and 2 touchdowns, easily outproducing Taylor (18 yards in his return game).
Colts coach Shane Steichen has made some aggressive calls on 4th down this year, and Mike Vrabel is no stranger to the same on the other side for Tennessee. This game could be sneaky good as long as Levis shows up with any accuracy to his throws.
We’ll take the over with the hope that both teams move the ball very well again like they did in Week 5, but one of those field goals can turn into a touchdown this time to hit the over.
The NFC Championship Game Rematch But With Touchdowns
Please be anything but a 31-7 game like last year’s NFC Championship Game. This critical matchup in the NFC should be much better assuming that Brock Purdy’s elbow stays intact for the whole game this time. The 49ers come in hot while the Eagles are 9-1 in close games and always finding ways to score and win.
The 49ers are a 2.5-point road favorite to the surprise of some, but we like a game prop for this one where both teams will score at least 1 touchdown in each half.
Sunday, December 3, 2023 – 04:25 PM ET at Lincoln Financial Field
Why the 49ers Should Score in Both Halves
The 49ers are well known for their early game scripts by Kyle Shanahan, who gets great production out of opening drives with this team. A lot of those Christian McCaffrey touchdowns come early in games as per the script.
But the script was ripped to shreds in January when these teams last met in the playoffs. A quick edge rush by Haason Reddick got to Brock Purdy and injured his elbow. Backup Josh Johnson soon suffered a concussion, and the 49ers basically had no one to throw the ball.
That changes this week, and we have seen teams throw the ball at will against the Eagles this year as the run defense is very good, but the pass rush and secondary are not on par with how the team played in 2022. You can make plays on this defense and you can do it in Philly as we’ve seen with Minnesota (28), Washington (31), Dallas (23), and Buffalo (34) all scoring good points in this building.
Purdy has shaken his turnover problems the last few weeks and is the No. 1 quarterback in most statistical measures this year. He will be ready for this one to show what he can really do against this team, and he has a full complement of weapons coming along with him.
Why the Eagles Should Score in Both Halves
The Eagles are the 65th team since 1950 to win at least 10 of their first 11 games. But their plus-64 scoring differential in those games ranks next to last among those 65 teams as the Eagles have been playing it close all year. They have already come back from a double-digit deficit 4 times this year (both Washington games, Kansas City, and Buffalo).
The Eagles have scored at least 21 points in every game except for the loss to the Jets. But the defense has also allowed at least 17 points in every home game this year, which is a different result than what we saw last year with this team.
But Jalen Hurts and company have found ways to keep the scoring up no matter what happens early in games. The 49ers have a great defense but you can say it has rarely been challenged. The last time it was by Cincinnati, the 49ers gave up 31 points with the Bengals scoring touchdowns early and late in that game.
This prop has hit in all 5 home games for the Eagles this year. The over is also a league-best 16-8 (66.7%) since 2021 when the Eagles are at home under coach Nick Sirianni.
Ignore the prime-time games this year where scoring is at a minimum. The late-afternoon slate has been killing it with overs in big games, and these are 2 offenses looking to prove something with MVP candidates at quarterback. Expect both to score a touchdown in each half and enjoy the show.
NFL Pick: Both Teams to Score 1+ Touchdown in Each Half (+170) at Bet365
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