NFL Week 15 Upset Picks

Posted by Michael Hunt on Tuesday,December 13, 2016 9:33, EDT in

Here’s a pretty amazing statistic: entering the Monday night game of Week 14 between Baltimore and New England, underdogs were 102-102- 3 against the spread this season, so obviously the same number as favorites. Here are two upsets I like this week — ATS not straight up — and their NFL odds.

NFL Week 15 Upset Picks

Miami Dolphins at New York Jets (+2.5)

This game is Saturday — the NFL stages a few games on Saturday late in the regular season each year once college football’s regular season ends. The Dolphins (8-5) definitely have to have this to keep their wild-card hopes alive, but they will be without starting QB Ryan Tannehill likely for the rest of the season. The Dolphins thought that Tannehill tore his ACL in Sunday’s win over Arizona. But on Monday, it was revealed to be MCL and ACL strains in his left knee. That’s much better news as torn ACL would have put the start of next season in jeopardy for Tannehill. Head coach Adam Gase said surgery is not required and that the team doesn’t have an exact timetable for Tannehill’s recovery, but the quarterback is expected to miss at least the next couple of games. Maybe he’s back if Miami makes the playoffs. Tannehill, 28, has been one of the NFL’s most durable quarterbacks. He hasn’t missed a start in nearly five seasons. Matt Moore, who hasn’t started a game in five years, gets the call for the Dolphins, who trail the Denver Broncos (8-5) for the final wild-card spot in the AFC via tiebreakers.

New York (4-9) ended a four-game losing streak with a 23-17 OT comeback win in San Francisco on Sunday. Bilal Powell ran for 145 yards, including the game-ending 19-yard touchdown in overtime, to help new starting QB Bryce Petty and the Jets rally from 14 points down. New York used a 15-play, 66-yard drive to cut the deficit to 17-14 with 5:04 left when Powell bowled his way in for a 5-yard run and Petty ran in the 2-point conversion. New York then forced a punt and Petty led the Jets 33 yards to tie the game on Nick Folk’s 50-yard field goal with 38 seconds left. No. 1 running back Matt Forte admitted after Sunday’s win that he has felt “cracking and popping” in his knee Forte, who has dealt with myriad knee injuries before, said he believes he avoided ligament damage but is clearly concerned about the injury. If Forte can’t play in Week 15 against the Dolphins — and that is looking like a long shot — Powell will again be a workhorse.

Green Bay Packers at Chicago Bears (+6.5)

The NFL’s oldest rivalry is renewed. Green Bay (7-6) won a third straight game Sunday, 38-10 over Seattle in easily the Packers’ most impressive win of the season. Aaron Rodgers finished with 246 yards and three scores before leaving early in the fourth quarter with his team up by 25. Rodgers, who is already playing with a sore left hamstring, finished 18 of 23. He was sacked just once. The Packers’ defense flustered Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson, who threw a career-high five interceptions. The calf injury Rodgers suffered Sunday isn’t as bad as the one from two years ago, he says. Rodgers did not end up missing any games in 2014, so this reports suggests he will be ready to face the Bears on Sunday. Rodgers was clearly limited after suffering the injury on the third play of the game and was removed early in the fourth quarter of the blowout win.

Chicago (3-10) lost 20-17 in Detroit. Matt Barkley completed two passes that put the Bears in a position to at least attempt a tying field goal in the final minute, but both were negated by penalties, before turning the ball over on downs from the Detroit 44. Bears receivers Eddie Royal (toe) and Marquess Wilson (groin) were inactive due to injuries and defensive lineman Eddie Goldman injured an ankle during the game. The Bears lost in Green Bay 26-10 in Week 7. Rodgers threw for 326 yards and three touchdowns. He was 39 of 56, setting a franchise mark for completions in a game.