Betting

NFL Week 16 Betting: Odds, Spreads, Picks, Predictions For Christmas Eve Slate

NFL Betting Predictions Christmas Eve

It’s Weather Week, ladies and gentlemen, where several contests will be impacted by wind and cold temperatures. I tend to avoid games with unwanted layers of variance, such as difference-making wind or temperatures approaching zero degrees. That makes this a tough week for me as most of the outdoor games on the Christmas Eve slate have wind and temperature levels that, at minimum, approach difference-making thresholds.

There are links to my betting previews for each game on the Christmas Eve slate. I have added weather reports from the Weather Channel for every impacted game. Please keep in mind that betting on football is my dance, not reporting the weather.

Falcons (5-9) at Ravens (9-5)

  • Opening Spread: Ravens -7
  • Opening Game Total: 39.5
  • Opening Team Totals: Ravens (23.25) Falcons (16.25)
  • Weather: Outdoors. 10-15 mph sustained winds with 30 mph gusts. Wind chills will bring temperatures around 10 degrees.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Ravens -7
  • This line has moved to Ravens -7.5
  • This total opened at 39.5 points
  • This total has moved to 37.5 points

The Ravens opened as -7.5 favorites, which has been bet down to the -6.5 range. That tells me oddsmakers anticipated Tyler Huntley to start in place of Lamar Jackson. I have no interest in betting on Falcons quarterback Desmond Ridder in his second NFL start, on the road, in Baltimore. So, I’m going to stay away from this game against the spread as the Ravens offense hasn’t shown me enough in recent weeks to bet on them to win a game decisively, even if that’s the direction I’d lean. However, I will take Mark Andrews over receiving yards and Desmond Ridder to throw an interception on the Player Prop Happy Hour that we’ll record later today.

Bills (11-3) at Bears (3-11)

  • Opening Spread: Bears +9.
  • Opening Game Total: 41
  • Opening Team Totals: Bears (16) Bills (25).
  • Weather: Outdoors, wind concerns. 15-20 mph sustained winds with 35 mph gusts. Wind chills will bring subzero temperatures.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Bears +9
  • This line has moved to Bears +8.5
  • This total opened at 41 points
  • This total has moved to 40.5 points

I had more enthusiasm on a Bears cover before their injury report downgrades, where they will likely be down both starting guards and their top three receivers (including Darnell Mooney, who is out for the year). That will make Chicago even more reliant on their run game, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing in adverse weather. Both teams are used to playing in these conditions, but if wind conditions begin to trend up, I’ll be more worried about their impact on this contest. As they stand now, these two teams are well-equipped for this kind of game environment.

Lions (7-7) at Panthers (5-9)

  • Opening Spread: Panthers +3
  • Opening Game Total: 44.5
  • Opening Team Totals: Panthers (20.75) Lions (23.75)
  • Weather: Outdoors, cold temperatures. 10-15 mph sustained winds with 30 mph gusts. Temperatures will be below freezing

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Panthers +3
  • This line has moved to Panthers +2.5
  • This total opened at 44.5 points
  • This total remains at 44.5 points

You have to give interim head coach Steve Wilks a ton of credit for turning the Panthers into a tough, physical football team that’s still alive in the NFC South race. The Lions blew out a similar team on the road earlier this season in the New York Giants, and they just beat the Jets last week. Detroit is a dome team playing their second road game in a row, but offensive lines travel well, and the Lions have been tough under Dan Campbell in each of the last two years. The Lions need to keep winning to get into the NFC playoffs, and I’m willing to take my chances on them as -2.5 favorites against a volatile Panthers offense in this spot.

Seahawks (7-7) at Chiefs (11-3)

  • Opening Spread: Chiefs -9.5
  • Opening Game Total: 49
  • Opening Team Totals: Chiefs (29.25) Seahawks (19.75)
  • Weather: Outdoors, below-freezing temperatures. 10 mph sustained winds with 30 mph gusts. Wind chills will bring temperatures around 10 degrees.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Chiefs -9.5
  • This line remains at -9.5
  • This total opened at 49 points
  • This total has moved to 48.5 points

Kansas City has failed to cover as massive favorites in each of the last two weeks against Denver and Houston. The Chiefs have the raw materials to approach 40 points of offense against this Seahawks team, but they have not been playing their best football of late. I’m not a big believer in Seattle, who has been free-falling back to reality in recent weeks, and Tyler Lockett’s absence reduces the ceiling of this overachieving offense. Still, getting 10 or more points is a lot for a desperate team like Seattle. I’m going to take the Seahawks as a significant underdog or pass on this contest. I’m leaning towards passing currently.

Saints (5-9) at Browns (6-8)

  • Opening Spread: Browns -3
  • Opening Game Total: 34.5
  • Opening Team Totals: Browns (18.75) Saints (15.75)
  • Weather: Outdoors, extreme wind. 25-30 mph sustained winds with 60 mph gusts. Wind chills will bring subzero temperatures.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Browns -3
  • This line has moved to Browns -2.5
  • This total opened at 34.5 points
  • This total has moved to 32.5 points

This is the sort of weather that completely changes how I view a game. Cleveland tends to have a severe wind game like this once a year, and I bet the under early in the week when this type of game environment is forecasted. You’re getting a bad number on the total now, so I can’t recommend that you bet it, but this is still a “bet the under or leave the total alone” game with this kind of wind. I completely avoid sides in weather games like this, as this kind of wind brings all sorts of volatility.

That said, the Browns are well built for this type of contest with their premium offensive line and high-end running back stable. Usually this situation would be bad for a dome team like the Saints, but they have their own top-ten offensive line and an elite running back in Alvin Kamara. The depth of the Saints running back group is undesirable, so I will be on the lookout for Taysom Hill over rushing figures that I expect will open around 30 yards. If Sean Payton was still the Saints coach, that would be a slam dunk bet for me, but I will still take the over at that kind of number as it would be very surprising if Hill didn’t see a usage spike in this type of game environment.

Bengals (10-4) at Patriots (7-7)

  • Opening Spread: Patriots +3.5
  • Opening Game Total: 40
  • Opening Team Totals: Patriots (18.25) Bengals (21.75)
  • Weather: Outdoors, cold temperatures. 15 mph sustained winds with 35 mph gusts. Windchill will bring temperatures around 10 degrees. Chance of snowfall.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Patriots +3.5
  • This line remains at Patriots +3.5
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the Patriots +3.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Patriots +3
  • This total opened at 40 points
  • This total has moved to 39.5 points

Bill Belichick is famous for making opposing offenses play “left-handed,, ” which usually involves “taking away” a skill position player. I think Belichick treats Joe Burrow similar to how he treated Tom Brady last season, where Belichick forces Burrow to beat him on the perimeter with out-breaking routes from a macro game planning sense. I’m going to stay away from this one, with the expectation that New England keeps it close. Joe Burrow and Josh Allen are the quarterbacks in the league that I’m the least likely to bet against.

Giants (8-5-1) at Vikings (11-3)

  • Opening Spread: Vikings -3.5
  • Opening Game Total: 47.5
  • Opening Team Totals: Vikings (25.25) Giants (22)
  • Weather: Dome

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Vikings -3.5
  • This line has moved to Vikings -4.5
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the Vikings -3.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Vikings -4
  • This total opened at 47.5 points
  • This total remains at 47.5 points

My stance on this game is different than I would have expected a couple of weeks ago, which I explain in this article. But something that has caught my eye throughout the week is that everyone is expecting Daniel Jones to shred the Vikings. I wouldn’t bank on Daniel Jones, who I’d frame as the league’s most conservative game manager, shredding anyone. From a talent standpoint, the Vikings could beat the Giants in multiple phases. But Minnesota may have emptied the tank, so to speak, in their come-from-behind victory against the Colts last week. I go out of my way to bet against teams coming off that type of emotional win, but I have struggled to get to a Giants bet from a football standpoint.

Texans (1-12-1) at Titans (7-7)

  • Opening Spread: Titans -7
  • Opening Game Total: 39
  • Opening Team Totals: Titans (23) Texans (16)
  • Weather: Outdoors. 15 mph sustained winds with 30 mph gusts. Wind chills will bring temperatures into the single digits.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Titans -7
  • This line has moved to Titans -3.5
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the Titans -4.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Titans -3.5
  • This total opened at 39 points

Malik Willis is in at quarterback for injured Ryan Tannehill. Willis and the Titans beat the Texans 17-10 earlier in the season behind The Big Dog’s fourth consecutive game of rushing for 200 yards against division rival Houston. That isn’t a typo; Derrick Henry has run for over 200 yards in each of his last four games against the Texans. Jacksonville controls its own destiny in the AFC South race, with a Week 16 victory already in the books and a Week 18 date against the Titans. That means Tennessee has to put an end to their four-game skid. The Texans have given the Cowboys and Chiefs all they can handle over the last two weeks, but this is a bet on the Titans or pass spot here, as Henry and the Titans front can conceivably carry this game.

Commanders (7-6-1) at 49ers (10-4)

  • Opening Spread: 49ers -7
  • Opening Game Total: 39.5
  • Opening Team Totals: 49ers (23.25) Commanders (16.25)
  • Weather: Outdoors, no current concerns

The Line Report

  • This line opened as 49ers -7
  • This line has moved to 49ers -6.5
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the 49ers -7.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the 49ers -7
  • This total opened at 39.5 points

The 49ers’ defense has a potentially game-derailing trench advantage in this contest. We saw the Giants defensive front dominate the Commanders in the trenches last week, so this is a real problem for Washington. If Brock Purdy continues to play at his current level, the 49ers have a clear path to a decisive victory against Washington.

Eagles (13-1) at Cowboys (10-4)

  • Opening Spread: Cowboys -1.5
  • Opening Game Total: 51
  • Opening Team Totals: Cowboys (26.25) Eagles (24.75)
  • Weather: Indoors

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Cowboys -1.5
  • This line has moved to Cowboys -4.5 with a peak of Cowboys -6
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the Cowboys -4.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Cowboys -5.5
  • This total opened at 51 points
  • This total has moved to 46.5 points

Philadelphia has the best roster in football, which means they have the raw materials to go into Dallas and leave with a win if Gardner Minshew plays well. The pressure is on the Cowboys, and especially Dak Prescott, after narrowly escaping the Texans and losing to the Jaguars over the past two weeks. I will take the Eagles or pass here, though I’m leaning towards passing as the line has corrected after a brief stay at Eagles +6.

Raiders (6-8) at Steelers (6-8)

  • Opening Spread: Steelers -2
  • Opening Game Total: 41
  • Opening Team Totals: Steelers (21.5) Raiders (19.5)
  • Weather: Outdoors. 15 mph sustained winds with 30 mph gusts. Single digits temperatures that will be driven below zero with the windchill.

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Steelers -2
  • This line has moved to Steelers -2.5
  • DraftKings Pick ’Em has the Steelers -2.5
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Steelers -2.5
  • This total opened at 41 points
  • This total has moved to 39.5 points

Derek Carr hasn’t played particularly well in cold games, the Raiders are coming off an emotional win, and the Steelers defensive front has a significant advantage in the trenches. I’m taking the Steelers or passing in this spot.

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