NFL Picks Week 14: ATS Betting Predictions

nfl picks week 14
Photo credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Week 14 in the NFL is upon us and there’s a full slate of action on the board–a true holiday gift for bettors everywhere. The schedule features some marquee matchups (49ers-Saints, Chiefs-Patriots) and some, well, not-so-marquee matchups (Bengals-Browns, Jets-Dolphins). But winners can be found anywhere, so let’s take a look around the league with a full complement of NFL Week 14 picks and predictions.

Note: All trends go back to the start of the 2003 season unless otherwise noted.

Colts vs. Buccaneers

  • Spread: Buccaneers -3, Colts +3
  • Moneyline: Buccaneers (-167), Colts (+148)
  • Total: 47.5
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, FOX
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Tampa Bay Buccaneers,books:DraftKings”]

The Colts looked like a surefire playoff team earlier this season, but injuries to top weapons T.Y. Hilton and Marlon Mack have significantly hampered their offensive attack. Mack will return this week, as will wide receiver Paris Campbell, but following a killer 31-17 loss at home to the Titans last week, the Colts’ current playoff chances sit at just 10%, according to FiveThirtyEight’s ELO model.

Indianapolis wants to be a run-first team, and Mack’s return will help, but the Bucs No. 2 ranked rush defense is holding opponents to only 3.4 yards per carry. Todd Bowles’ defense has demonstrated an ability to tame talented rushers on numerous occasions this season, keeping in check the likes of Christian McCaffrey, Leonard Fournette, and Saquon Barkley.

Colts vs. Buccaneers Pick

Ultimately, I have a hard time trusting Jacoby Brissett on the road after leading his team to 17 points or less in three of the Colts’ last four games—even against the roller coaster that is Jameis Winston and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Give me the Bucs (-3) over the Colts.

Lions vs. Vikings

  • Spread: Vikings -12.5, Lions +12.5
  • Moneyline: Vikings (-625), Lions (+500)
  • Total: 43.5
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, FOX
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Minnesota Vikings,books:DraftKings”]

Despite a tough loss at Seattle last week, the Vikings still have the inside track on the NFC’s final wild card spot. Their playoff odds should only increase this Sunday when they host the hapless Detroit Lions, an early-season darling that has completely unraveled in the midst of a five-game losing streak.

Hats off to David Blough who played well in his first NFL start last week, but the Vikings’ ability to stop the run figures to frequently put the rookie in a tough spot in a hostile environment. I expect a few backbreaking mistakes, while the Vikings’ potent array of weapons such as Stefon Diggs, Dalvin Cook and Alexander Mattison should be able to gash a vulnerable Detroit defense by both air and ground.

Lions vs. Vikings Pick

Zimmer’s Vikings have struggled to cover at home as a double-digit favorite, going only 1-4-1 ATS, but they have been a spectacular 24-10-1 ATS as a home favorite overall. Give me the Vikings (-12.5) over the Lions.

Ravens vs. Bills

  • Spread: Ravens -6, Bills +6
  • Moneyline: Ravens (-265), Colts (+225)
  • Total: 43.5
  • Date: Sunday,1pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Buffalo Bills,books:DraftKings”]

The Bills are well-coached and well-balanced. I love them—I just don’t love them this week. Typically, I’m all for fading red-hot teams like the Ravens that are getting tons of love, but not in this spot. Baltimore’s ground game, which averages a league-best 5.6 yards per attempt, is a flat-out force, and the Buffalo defense is allowing a healthy 4.5 yards per carry. That’s a bad matchup.

I’m a little wary of Baltimore coming off of a physically and emotionally draining win over the 49ers last week, while the Bills have extra rest following their Thanksgiving upset win over Dallas, but I think this large spread is revealing.

Ravens vs. Bills Pick

Home underdogs of 4-6 points with a .700 record or better are only 3-11 ATS and they are 1-9 ATS after the month of September. Looks like a trap to me. I’m going with the Ravens (-6) over the Bills.

49ers vs. Saints

  • Spread: Saints -2.5, 49ers +2.5
  • Moneyline: Saints (-141), 49ers (+125)
  • Total: 44.5
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, FOX
[sportsbook filters=”teams:New Orleans Saints,books:DraftKings”]

The 49ers are undoubtedly one of the NFL’s elite teams and this is a big game as they battle with the Seahawks for the NFC West crown and a possible first round bye. Also vying for a first round bye is the NFC South champion New Orleans Saints. I’m not going to overthink this one. The 49ers are coming off of a physical loss to the Ravens last Sunday and for the second straight week have to deal with a difficult opponent on the road—one that has the benefit of three extra days rest.

There is also this: New Orleans is 28-6 ATS under Sean Payton against teams with a .700 record or better, including 18-1 ATS at home and 13-0 ATS as a home favorite.

49ers vs. Saints Pick

I can’t go against that, so I’m going with the Saints (-2.5) over the 49ers. I like the under in this one, too.

Redskins vs. Packers

  • Spread: Packers -12.5 , Redskins +12.5
  • Moneyline: Packers (-770), Redskins (+600)
  • Total: 41.5
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, FOX
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Green Bay Packers,books:DraftKings”]

Call me a law of averages guy, I guess. After watching the Panthers and Eagles fall as monster favorites last week, I should probably be a bit wary of backing both the Vikings and Packers as double-digit favorites this week. Oh well. Kudos to Washington for showing some fight in back-to-back wins, but the Packers should be ultra-motivated to stay atop the NFC North standings. I can’t back a rookie quarterback on what remains a bad team to go to Lambeau Field and keep it close. Green Bay is 8-5 ATS when Rodgers starts as a favorite of at least 12 points.

Redskins vs. Packers Pick

Green Bay will most certainly win, and my lean is that they will cover the spread.

Bengals vs. Browns

  • Spread: Browns -7, Bengals +7
  • Moneyline: Browns (-305), Bengals (+260)
  • Total: 41.5
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Cincinnati Bengals,books:DraftKings”]

The Browns’ late-season revival came crashing to a thud last week in Pittsburgh. What has been one of the most disappointing teams in recent memory lacks leadership, and, more importantly, just isn’t very good. Want a revealing look at where the Browns are as a team right now? Here:

Meanwhile, the Bengals finally managed their first win a week ago in Andy Dalton’s return. While I’m not going to pretend Cincinnati has turned a corner, who are the Browns to be laying seven points to any team?

Bengals vs. Browns Pick

I’m going with the Bengals (+7) to cover against the Browns.

Broncos vs. Texans

  • Spread: Texans -9, Broncos +9
  • Moneyline: Texans (-375), Broncos (+310)
  • Total: 43
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Denver Broncos,books:DraftKings”]

The Broncos have to be feeling pretty good after winning rookie quarterback Drew Lock’s debut last week. Now they travel to Houston to face the AFC South-leading Texans, a team coming off a statement upset victory over the Patriots last week. A possible letdown spot? Maybe—but the trends show otherwise. Home favorites of 8-9.5 points with a .600 record or better that are coming off a win as an underdog are 16-9 ATS.

This is most certainly not one of my favorite games of the week. Denver’s defense is formidable, and I have to say, I’m not so sure I trust the Texans to post a double-digit win. That being said, I’m also not sure I trust a rookie quarterback in his first road start to keep it close against a motivated Houston squad.

Broncos vs. Texans Pick

Texans (-9) over Broncos

Dolphins vs. Jets

  • Spread: Jets -5, Dolphins +5
  • Moneyline: Jets (-240), Dolphins (+210)
  • Total: 46
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Miami Dolphins,books:DraftKings”]

Don’t let the Miami Dolphins get hot! Led by the good Ryan Fitzpatrick, the Dolphins pulled the upset over the reeling Eagles last week as a double-digit home underdog. Now they get the Jets off of a blowout loss at Cincy last week.

The Dolphins have played much better in recent weeks and are a respectable 3-2 ATS over their last five, but this remains a wretched football team that has been devastated by injuries. The Eagles’ struggles last week were almost entirely self-inflicted and more a product of a team that simply quit against one with nothing to lose.

Dolphins vs. Jets Pick

While nobody will mistake the Jets as world-beaters, Ryan Fitzpatrick has demonstrated numerous times throughout the years that he can go ice cold in an instant. I’ll take the Jets (-5) over the Dolphins.

Panthers at Falcons

  • Spread: Falcons -3, Panthers +3
  • Moneyline: Falcons (-177), Panthers (+155)
  • Total: 47
  • Date: Sunday, 1 pm, FOX

[sportsbook filters=”teams:Carolina Panthers,books:DraftKings”]

I have no interest whatsoever in betting this game. Carolina quarterback Kyle Allen seems to be going backwards in recent weeks, and it’s virtually impossible to like him on the road against a Falcons squad that has been playing hard to ensure head coach Dan Quinn doesn’t join former Panthers head coach Ron Rivera in the league’s unemployment line.

Panthers at Falcons Pick

I’ll go with the better quarterback at home and take the Falcons (-3) over the Panthers.

Chargers vs. Jaguars

  • Spread: Chargers -3, Jaguars +3
  • Moneyline: Chargers (-180), Jaguars (+155)
  • Total: 43
  • Date: Sunday, 4:05 pm, FOX
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Jacksonville Jaguars,books:DraftKings”]

There are two things you can say about the Chargers. They find themselves in every single game, so it’s not a stretch to say they bring a quality effort every week. That’s the good news. On the other hand, there may be no team in NFL history that invents new ways to lose on a consistent basis like the Chargers.

Chargers vs. Jaguars Pick

Jacksonville may get a boost in the wake of its decision to go back to Gardner Minshew, but I have concerns about the Chargers running the football all over the Jaguars’ putrid rush defense. My lean is to take the road favorite, but my play is on the over.

Chiefs vs. Patriots

  • Spread: Patriots -3, Chiefs +3
  • Moneyline: Patriots (-167), Chiefs (+145)
  • Total: 49
  • Date: Sunday, 4:25 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Kansas City Chiefs,books:DraftKings”]

The Chiefs will have to overcome some daunting history in order to pull off the upset against the Patriots. Since the start of the 2017 season, the Patriots are 22-2 straight up at home (16-8 ATS) and have won 21 straight games there overall. Even crazier, the Patriots are 25-1 against AFC teams at home during the month of December, though they have only been favored by three points or less only once.

I know the history, and yet, I think the Chiefs are going to go into Gillette Stadium and avenge their loss in last year’s AFC Championship Game. I don’t trust the New England offense, and though Andy Reid has fallen short in more than his share of big games, the Chiefs are 30-10 ATS as a road team against AFC opponents and 7-3 ATS on the road against conference opponents with a .700 winning percentage or greater.

In terms of the total, the over is only 3-7-1 when it closes between 48-50 points in games between a road team with a .600 record or better and a home team with a .700 record or better. It’s 1-5 when the total closes between 48.5-50 points.

Chiefs vs. Patriots Pick

I’m preparing for an uncomfortable three hours, but I’m going to lean with the Chiefs (+3) over the Patriots and the total to stay under 49 points.

Steelers vs Cardinals

  • Spread: Steelers -2.5, Cardinals +2.5
  • Moneyline: Steelers (-125), Cardinals (+110)
  • Total: 43
  • Date: Sunday, 4:25 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Arizona Cardinals,books:DraftKings”]

This is one of my favorite games of the week. The Steelers find themselves in the thick of the AFC wild card race after knocking off Cleveland at home last week, while the Cardinals were destroyed at home by the Rams. The expectation by many is that the Steelers will get it done, but I think they’re in line for a stumble.

Steelers vs. Cardinals Pick

Pittsburgh is only 26-34-1 ATS as a road favorite under Mike Tomlin, and of greater concern, road favorites of three points or less that are coming off of a win facing a team that lost its previous game by 26+ points are only 5-9-2 ATS. I’m taking the Cardinals (+2.5) over the Steelers.

Titans vs. Raiders

  • Spread: Titans -3, Raiders +3
  • Moneyline: Titans (-157), Raiders (+138)
  • Total: 47
  • Date: Sunday, 4:25 pm, CBS
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Oakland Raiders,books:DraftKings”]

Here’s another situation with a red-hot team fighting for playoff position against an opponent coming off of a blowout loss. The Raiders have played excellent football at home this season, and I’m just not sure I’m ready to fully buy in on the Titans. It’s also worth noting that road favorites coming off of a double-digit win playing a team that’s coming off a 30+ point loss are 4-14 ATS.

Titans vs. Raiders Pick

I expect the Raiders (+3) to shake off back-to-back miserable losses and cover the spread.

Seahawks vs. Rams

  • Spread: Rams +1, Seahawks -1
  • Moneyline: Rams (-114), Seahawks (+100)
  • Total: 47
  • Date: Sunday, 8:20 pm, NBC
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Seattle Seahawks,books:DraftKings”]

The NFC West-leading Seahawks continue to show their mettle week after week, while the Rams have disappointed this season, but if you remember—Los Angeles actually had Seattle beat in the first meeting between these two teams. Until, well:

The Rams bounced back from a blowout loss to the Ravens two weeks ago with a convincing road win at Arizona last week, and I think that win may be the catalyst for a late-season surge. Plus, home underdogs in division games that lost the previous head-to-head matchup by three points or less are 13-8-1 ATS in December games since the start of the 2003 season.

Seahawks vs. Rams Pick

I think the Rams (+1) get their revenge and cover.

Giants vs. Eagles

  • Spread: Eagles -9, Giants +9
  • Moneyline: Eagles (-360), Giants (+300)
  • Total: 45.5
  • Date: Monday, 8:15 pm, ESPN
[sportsbook filters=”teams:Philadelphia Eagles,books:DraftKings”]

Since the Cowboys seem to insist that the Eagles win the NFC East, the Birds will get yet another crack at taking advantage of a terrible opponent this week after failing to do so in Miami last Sunday. Eli Manning is likely to start for the Giants for the first time since late September as rookie Daniel Jones battles an ankle sprain. While I’m wary of taking the Eagles against any team at any number right now, particularly considering that teams on at least a three-game losing streak and are favored by at least eight points are only 4-8 ATS since 2003.

Still, home teams favored between 7.5-9.5 points in division games are 11-5 ATS in primetime since ’03, while below .500 home favorites of 8-10 points are 3-0 ATS in primetime games during that same timeframe.

Eagles vs. Giants Pick

One of these NFC East “contenders” has to (I think) finally have a breakout performance, so I’m taking the Eagles (-9) over the Giants.

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