Inconceivable! For the first time this year, all three of the NFL picks featured in our Week 12 Best Bets went sour. It was only by a few points in each case, but our three Over picks went Under instead. Into the Bad Dog Box we go.
It’s not the end of the world, of course. Our Best Bets are still 24-11-1 on the season, which isn’t too bad at all. And there’s enough potential profit margin in the following three picks to fire some more chunky bets at the Week 13 NFL odds board.
Washington Commanders vs. New York Giants
Sunday, December 4, 2022 – 01:00 PM EST at MetLife Stadium
It’s December now, so as autumn turns to winter, we need to start switching our focus from the Over to the Under. Sadly, there’s no precipitation or heavy wind in Sunday’s forecast for East Rutherford, but these two offenses – or lack thereof – should get us to the pay window.
Taylor Heinicke: Under Machine
The Commanders (Under 8-4) have gone 5-1 SU and 5-0-1 ATS since Taylor Heinicke took over at quarterback for the injured Carson Wentz. That’s nice, but for this particular matchup, we’re more interested in that 4-2 Under record.
Heinicke doesn’t have nearly the same offensive upside as Wentz, but he also makes fewer mistakes – it’s as if Colt McCoy never left. According to the passing DVOA charts at Football Outsiders, Heinicke (minus-6.7) has performed just a bit worse than his Giants counterpart, Daniel Jones (minus-3.7), who ranks No. 21 among NFL quarterbacks with at least 180 pass attempts.
New York (7-3-1 Under) gave us an incredible run of upset victories during the first half of the regular season. They’ve come back to earth a bit recently, and the offensive line in front of Jones is a mess now, with two more players listed as questionable with neck injuries: guard Jon Feliciano and tackle Tyre Phillips.
NFL Pick: Under 40.5 (-110) at BetMGM
Miami Dolphins vs. San Francisco 49ers
Sunday, December 4, 2022 – 04:05 PM EST at Levi’s Stadium
Apparently, we still have one more chance to take the Over before the NFL slips into its traditional post-Thanksgiving coma. Light rain is expected in Santa Clara this Sunday, but we’ve got two teams with underrated quarterbacks to exploit.
Tua For MVP – or Jimmy G?
Chances are it’ll be Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes winning his second MVP award this year, but it’s Miami’s Tua Tagovailoa who leads the league in passing DVOA. Mahomes is second overall, followed by San Francisco QB Jimmy Garoppolo in third.
Casual bettors aren’t the only ones who put too much stock in a quarterback’s arm strength. Many professional scouts have been equally quick to pooh-pooh both Tagovailoa and Garoppolo; that probably won’t change despite the success these two gentlemen are having. Most people just don’t learn.
By the way, the Dolphins have the Under at 6-5 this year, and 5-4 in games that Tagovailoa has started; the Niners have the Under at 7-4, and 5-4 since Garoppolo took over for the injured Trey Lance. Not ideal for an Over bet, and that rain is a concern, but the combined forces of these quarterbacks should make the difference.
NFL Pick: Over 46.5 (-110) at BetMGM
Los Angeles Chargers vs. Las Vegas Raiders
Sunday, December 4, 2022 – 04:25 PM EDT at Allegiant Stadium
No weather to speak of at all inside Allegiant Stadium, and each of these AFC West rivals has the Over at 6-5, but we’ll be going Under anyway. It’s just the right thing to do.
At this time last year, Dolphins fans were ruing their team’s decision to take Tagovailoa fifth overall at the 2020 NFL Draft, one spot ahead of Justin Herbert. Now, not so much. Herbert has dropped like a stone from sixth to No. 19 in passing DVOA, partly because of his injury-plagued offensive line in L.A., and partly because he’s been playing through his own collection of bumps and bruises.
Derek Carr (No. 13) hasn’t had the same dramatic drop-off as Herbert, but he’s also no longer performing at a Pro Bowl level. Being almost 32 years old might have something to do with it; having Josh McDaniels as his head coach is probably more to blame.
Again, we’re a bit concerned about this being an indoor game, and the Raiders bringing the league’s worst defense (as per DVOA) to the field. Make it a smaller bet if you feel the need – we won’t mind.
NFL Pick: Under 50.5 (-107) at BetMGM