NFL Betting Odds: Week 17 Line Movements and Last-Minute News
And just like that, Week 17 of the NFL season is upon us, and we couldn't be sadder to see another NFL regular season come and go. It's been an up-and-down season with a few highlights, a lot of mediocre play, some terrible officiating and atrocious team performance, but such is life when talking about the National Football League.
I hope this weekly Line Movement piece helped you understand why the NFL spreads moved or move the way they do and you were able to turn a profit by betting the NFL. We won't have a Line Movement piece for the postseason, but you can still check out the game-by-game previews at Doc's written by some of the best writers in the industry.
As always, here are some line moves or potential game-changing injury notes for Week 17.
Tennessee Titans at Houston Texans (+3.5, 45.5): This Titans vs. Texans matchup is a weird game to handicap, and as such, I am going to stay far away with my own money. The Titans can still get into the playoffs with a win against the Texans, which is why they are 3.5-point favorites. Does this mean they are going to win and cover the spread? No, but they will likely be the more motivated team as the Texans motivation and need to play their starters depends on what the Kansas City Chiefs do in the 1 p.m. slot. If the Chiefs win, the Texans will be locked into their spot as the No. 4 seed and as such will have no reason to play their starters. If the Chiefs lose to the Chargers, the Texans may be inclined to try and win this game to get a better seeding for the wild-card round. So, with that said, we lean to the Titans, but laying points with Ryan Tannehill and a hobbled Derrick Henry on the road is something I would rather not do. This game opened up as a pick 'em. However, with the circumstances surrounding the game, the public has made the Titans the favorites. As for the total, it's held steady at 45.5 for the majority of the week.
Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings (-1, 37): Sticking with the theme of weird games to handicap, this Bears vs. Vikings matchup is another game that means absolutely nothing for either team as the Bears season was an unmitigated disaster and the Vikings are locked into the No. 6 seed and as such have nothing to play for if not for momentum heading into the playoffs. Last week, both teams were brutal in their losses to Kansas City and Green Bay, respectively, so a bounce-back performance will be needed. This game opened up with the Vikings laying 7.5 points on their home field. However, because of the circumstances, the line has been bet down to -1, and the Bears have a good shot to win this game outright. You'd have to think that Mitch Trubisky and Matt Nagy will want to end the season on a positive note in order to build off of it heading into the offseason. As for the total, this is one of the lowest on the boards, and we don't think you could give us a low enough number for us to think about taking the over. This is going to be a snooze fest.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (+2, 37): We've essentially known this for a while now, but the Ravens secured the No. 1 seed last week and as a result will rest the majority of their starters for this game against their AFC North rival, Pittsburgh. The Steelers need to win this game in order to secure a wild-card spot, and as such, the spread has been moving in favor of them as they are now two-point favorites whereas they opened up as 3.5-point underdogs. Despite the Ravens playing their backups, I'd be hesitant to lay points on the road with a Steelers team that has issues at quarterback with Hodges and Rudolph both getting time last week with neither of them producing anything to write home about. You have to believe that the Ravens would want nothing more than to end the Steelers season and keep them out of the playoffs. As for the total, it opened up at 41 but has since been bet down to 37, and with good reason.
San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks (+3, 47): This is one of the marquee games of the week. The Niners and Seahawks hate each other. And with Seattle winning the first game in OT, the Niners are licking their chops to exact some revenge on the hobbled Seahawks. Both teams are still playing for better playoff seeding, but the Seahawks come into this game banged up and were forced to sign Marshawn Lynch off the streets in order to have a competent running back. This game opened up with the Seahawks laying one point, but the number has flipped sides and now the Seahawks are getting three points at Century Link Field. The Niners come into this game off a good win vs the Rams and have an extra day to prepare for the Seahawks. The Niners are the better team, and they'll be getting my money this week. As for the total, this game opened up at 47 and has held steady for the entire week. I'd side with the under if I had to bet on the total.
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