NFL Betting Odds: Week 16 Line Movements & Last-Minute News
Time to check in on Bovada's season-long "most" props posted as some individual titles could be won this week because a few playoff-bound teams could rest starters in Week 17 if their playoff seeding is locked up.
For most passing touchdowns, Russell Wilson is the -200 favorite and Philadelphia's Carson Wentz +300 with a tie at +200. You might be thinking, Wentz? Isn't he out for the year? He is indeed, but Wentz still leads the NFL at 33 TD passes with Wilson at 30. We could have our lowest winning total since 2009 when Drew Brees was No. 1 with 34. I would expect Wilson, who comes off his worst game of the year in a blowout loss to the Rams, to throw at least a couple in Dallas on Sunday.
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Really, what you are betting on here is whether Wilson will play in Week 17 vs. Arizona. He probably won't if the Seahawks lose Sunday as they'd be out. A victory does keep the Hawks alive. Again, though, consider that Seattle-Arizona is in the late-afternoon window next Sunday and the Seahawks could be eliminated before they take the field. I'd still take Wilson.
For passing yards, Tom Brady is the -500 favorite with Ben Roethlisberger at +300 and Matthew Stafford +700. Brady has 4,163 yards, Big Ben 4,025 and Stafford 3,920. There's a chance all three sit next week - or all play. The Patriots, Steelers and Lions are all favorites in Week 16 and should win. If they do, all three QBs would need to play Week 17. If the Lions lose in Cincinnati, though, they're done and there's no reason to play the banged-up Stafford in Week 17. If New England wins and Pittsburgh loses this weekend, Brady surely will not play next Sunday. Roethlisberger will have to play regardless because not only are the Steelers still chasing the Pats for the No. 1 seed but trying to hold off the Jags for No. 2. I might take Ben here if he had Antonio Brown, but he's out the rest of the regular season. Guess you have to go Brady.
For rushing yards, Pittsburgh's Le'Veon Bell is -110 with the Rams' Todd Gurley at +150 and Chiefs rookie Kareem Hunt +350. Bell leads at 1,222 with Hunt at 1,201 and Gurley 1,187. If Kansas City wins this week (or Chargers lose), it really has no reason to play Hunt in Week 17 as it would be locked into its playoff spot. Thus, you can see why he's a longer shot. Bell will be a work horse with Brown out. The Rams should have to play it out as they chase a potential first-round bye. I might go Gurley here as opposing defenses can key more on Bell with no Brown.
Finally, on sacks Arizona's Chandler Jones and Jacksonville's Calais Campbell are both +140 with Dallas' DeMarcus Lawrence at +300. Jones has 15, Campbell, a fantastic free-agent signing, has 14, and Lawrence 13.5. Jones' Cardinals have squat to play for. Lawrence's Cowboys wouldn't in Week 17 if they lose Sunday. Campbell's Jags will be all-out the next two weeks. He's the pick.
Here are some line moves or potential game-changing injury notes for Week 16.
Falcons at Saints (-6, 52.5): This is the most important game of the day as it has playoff ramifications all over the place. Atlanta is at least a wild-card team with a victory and would repeat in the NFC South with a win and Week 17 victory vs. Carolina. New Orleans clinches a playoff spot with a win and the division with a victory and Panthers home loss to Tampa Bay. The Saints were short-handed two weeks ago when they lost in Atlanta as star rookie running back Alvin Kamara left very early with a concussion. He's back now. The Falcons will also see the return of a multi-dimensional tailback from a concussion in Tevin Coleman. He was also hurt during that game (but lasted longer) and missed Monday night's victory in Tampa. The Saints might have the best 1-2 running back duo in the NFL in Mark Ingram and Kamara, but the Falcons are probably No. 2 with Devonta Freeman and Coleman. They have combined for 1,865 yards and 14 total touchdowns despite missing three games between them. The Saints have placed cornerback Kenny Vaccaro on IR after he had 10 tackles last Sunday vs. the Jets basically playing on one leg.
Vikings at Packers (+9, 41): I previewed this game earlier this week at Doc's but wanted to update a few Green Bay injuries. As expected, Packers backup QB Brett Hundley won't have the team's No. 1 receiver, Davante Adams, due to a concussion. I'm quite sure Adams won't play Week 17, either, as there's no point. Adams leads the team with 74 catches, 885 yards and 10 touchdowns, the latter second in the NFL. The Pack also will likely be without their top pass-rushing linebackers in Clay Matthews (hamstring) and Nick Perry (ankle/shoulder). They have combined for 14.5 sacks. Minnesota's Everson Griffen, by the way, is +500 on that sacks prop. He has 13. But the Vikes might be resting guys Week 17.
Rams at Titans (+7, 47.5): Tennessee probably is tired of facing the NFC West as it lost at Arizona and San Francisco the past two weeks, albeit only by a combined seven points. To me, this looks like a cross-country trap game for Los Angeles with the early kickoff just as it did for Seattle it visited Nashville in Week 3 - and the Titans won that game 33-27. The Rams are an NFC-best 6-1 ATS on the road, however. Their lone non-cover was their first away game of the year in San Francisco. Two Bovada specials surrounding these teams. The first asks if Gurley will get to 20 touchdowns. "Yes" is -200 and "no" +150. Gurley has rushed for 13 and caught four of them - he had four combined TDs last week in Seattle. I would say no, however. It's not that easy to have multiple-TD games (Gurley has three in 2017), and he'd need at least one of those to reach 20. The other prop is whether Titans coach Mike Mularkey will return in 2018, with yes at -175 and no at +135. The only way he's not is if the team finishes on a four-game losing streak and misses the postseason. The Titans host the Jags in Week 17. Tennessee can clinch a playoff berth in Week 16 with a win over the Rams combined with a Ravens loss and a Bills loss. Buffalo probably will lose but not Baltimore. The Titans would win the AFC South if they win this week and next and Jacksonville is upset in San Francisco on Sunday, which is very possible. I'd say Mularkey is back because I think the Titans win this week and get the second wild-card spot eventually.
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