Week 14 of the 2013 NFL season is just around the corner, making this an ideal time to get your wagers in on the upcoming slate of action.
Whether you are looking to take a massive risk at the sportsbook or just place a friendly bet among friends, you should take a second to analyze the updated lines in order to make an informed decision.
Keep reading to check out those latest spreads, my picks for the winner of each game and a closer look at a handful of contests you won’t want to miss when it comes to betting.
|Away Team||Home Team||Spread||Prediction (ATS)|
|Houston Texans||Jacksonville Jaguars||HOU -3.5||JAX|
|Kansas City Chiefs||Washington Redskins||KC -3||KC|
|Minnesota Vikings||Baltimore Ravens||BAL -6.5||BAL|
|Cleveland Browns||New England Patriots||NE -10||CLE|
|Oakland Raiders||New York Jets||NYJ -2.5||NYJ|
|Indianapolis Colts||Cincinnati Bengals||CIN -6||CIN|
|Atlanta Falcons||Green Bay Packers||N/A||N/A|
|Detroit Lions||Philadelphia Eagles||PHI -2.5||PHI|
|Miami Dolphins||Pittsburgh Steelers||PIT -3||PIT|
|Buffalo Bills||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||TB -2.5||TB|
|Tennessee Titans||Denver Broncos||DEN -12||TEN|
|St. Louis Rams||Arizona Cardinals||ARI -6||STL|
|New York Giants||San Diego Chargers||SD -3||NYG|
|Seattle Seahawks||San Francisco 49ers||SF -2.5||SEA|
|New Orleans Saints||Carolina Panthers||NO -3||NO|
|Dallas Cowboys||Chicago Bears||CHI -1||DAL|
Jacksonville Jaguars (+3.5) over Houston Texans
Would you back a team that has won three of its last four contests going against an opponent that is on a 10-game losing streak? What if the same squad you are considering betting on recently held that opponent to a mere six points during a road win? What if the club you are now salivating over was getting points?
Obviously you would get behind that team 100 percent, which is exactly why you should back the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 14.
The Jags are currently on a two-game winning streak and have won three of their last four, including the aforementioned 13-6 victory in Houston over the Texans.
Even more astonishingly, Jacksonville is still somehow getting points at home at EverBank Field for this upcoming showdown with the Texans.
While Houston looked somewhat impressive against the New England Patriots last Sunday, it was playing a team that was destined for a letdown after an incredible overtime win in Week 12’s edition of Sunday Night Football.
Which team will cover?
The Texans weren’t able to pull off the upset, losing 34-31 to push their skid to double digits.
Expect that streak of ineptitude to continue on Thursday Night Football when they match up with a surging Jags squad that showed it has heart and desire to finish the 2013 campaign on a high note.
Jacksonville proved that in Week 13, when it shook off a 95-yard touchdown from the Cleveland Browns in the final minutes to mount a game-winning drive. Cecil Shorts III hauled in a Chad Henne pass for a touchdown with 40 seconds on the clock to seal the improbable victory on the road.
It’s hard to bet against the Jags’ momentum, especially with players in Houston trash-talking their own team. Star wideout Andre Johnson recently made headlines for proclaiming “we suck” in reference to his offense, while veteran safety Ed Reed was cut a few weeks back after criticizing some coaching decisions.
The situation in Houston is dire, and it will only get worse with the second straight-up loss to Jacksonville in the last three weeks. Skip the points and play the moneyline here to maximize value.
New Orleans Saints (-3) over Carolina Panthers
The Saints were humbled by the Seattle Seahawks on the most recent airing of Monday Night Football, but you just know they will rebound at home in Week 14.
Which team will cover?
New Orleans has notably struggled away from the Superdome in 2013, and the loss to Seattle was just another in a long series of disappointing road results. Perhaps the worst came back in Week 9 when the mediocre New York Jets pulled off a 26-20 stunner in MetLife Stadium.
Of course, the Saints returned to the Big Easy and put on an offensive clinic in Week 10, decimating the Dallas Cowboys in a 49-17 rout.
They were also able to vanquish a tough San Francisco 49ers squad in the confines of the Superdome the following Sunday, keeping their record spotless and proving that this may be one of the best home teams—outside of the Seahawks—in the NFL.
Carolina may be a tough opponent on an eight-game winning streak, but it has looked quite beatable in recent weeks.
Prior to Week 13’s blowout victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Panthers had back-to-back games come down to the wire and could have easily lost two in a row had Tom Brady of the Patriots or Ryan Tannehill of the Miami Dolphins been able to complete a touchdown pass at the end of regulation.
It seems that this team is due for a letdown after riding such a hot streak, which is why the Panthers will ultimately fall in Week 14. Take the chalk here and watch as Carolina loses for the first time since Week 5.