NFL Week 17: Beating the Spread

Jeremy KaufmanSenior Analyst IDecember 26, 2008

Here is my analysis of the betting lines for all Week 17 games in the NFL:


1)     Oakland Raiders (+13) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-13)

The Oakland Raiders won’t win, but they’ll keep it close enough to come within the generous 13-point spread.

Winner: Oakland Raiders (+13)


2)     Detroit Lions (+10.5) vs. Green Bay Packers (-10.5)

The Green Bay Packers will blow out the Lions, officially leaving Detroit with a winless season.

Winner: Green Bay Packers (-10.5)


3)     New York Giants (+7) vs. Minnesota Vikings (-7)

Even with their backups in the game, the Giants will do what it takes to put up some points on the Vikings.

Winner: New York Giants (+7)


4)     Chicago Bears (+3) vs. Houston Texans (-3)

The Bears will just barely come out on top here, with the help of the three points that they are receiving from the spread.

Winner: Chicago Bears (+3)


5)     Carolina Panthers (-3) vs. New Orleans Saints (+3)

The Panthers will dominate on the ground against the porous Saints’ run defense.

Winner: Carolina Panthers (-3)


6)     St. Louis Rams (+14) vs. Atlanta Falcons (-14)

It won’t be pretty, but the Rams will just barely get by with the help of the spread.

Winner: St. Louis Rams (+14)


7)     Kansas City Chiefs (+3) vs. Cincinnati Bengals (-3)

The Chiefs will win this game in a close one, although they may be able to pull away with this one without the help of their three-point spread.

Winner: Kansas City Chiefs (+3)


8)     Tennessee Titans (-3) vs. Indianapolis Colts (+3)

Each of these teams will likely be playing backups in the latter half of the game. However, it should be noted that the Titans' Vince Young isn’t too bad for a backup, thereby giving the Titans a slight edge in this one.

Winner: Tennessee Titans (-3)


9)     Cleveland Browns (+11) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (-11)

Even with their large 11-point spread, the Browns won’t be able to hang with the dominant defense of the Steelers.

Winner: Pittsburgh Steelers (-11)


10) New England Patriots (-6) vs. Buffalo Bills (+6)

With the help of their six-point spread, the Bills will just barely overcome the superior New England Patriots football team.

Winner: Buffalo Bills (+6)


11) Dallas Cowboys (+1) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (-1)

Donovan McNabb will play with a chip on his shoulder against his former receiver, and as a result the Eagles, will end the Cowboys’ hope for a spot in the playoffs.

Winner: Philadelphia Eagles (-1)


12) Jacksonville Jaguars (+13) vs. Baltimore Ravens (-13)

The Ravens will win this game, but not by more than the 13 points that are being allocated to the Jaguars for the purposes of this bet.

Winner: Jacksonville Jaguars (+13)


13) Miami Dolphins (+3) vs. New York Jets (-3)

The Miami Dolphins will pull the upset and knock off the New York Jets, with or without the spread on their side.

Winner: Miami Dolphins (+3)


14) Seattle Seahawks (+7) vs. Arizona Cardinals (-7)

After putting forth a lackluster performance vs. the New England Patriots last week, the Cardinals will feel a sense of urgency in their play, and as a result they should come forth with a big game against the mediocre Seattle Seahawks.

Winner: Arizona Cardinals (-7)


15) Washington Redskins (+3) vs. San Francisco 49ers (-3)

The 49ers, under the leadership of the ever-motivational Mike Singletary, will muster up enough effort to overcome the Washington Redskins by more than the three-points that are being allocated to their opposition.

Winner: San Francisco 49ers (-3)


16) Denver Broncos (+8) vs. San Diego Chargers (-8)

If the Denver Broncos choose to rest their star players, they likely won’t have much of a shot in this one.

Winner: San Diego Chargers (-8)