Headlined by a top-tier Sunday Night matchup between the New England Patriots (10-0) and the Denver Broncos (8-2), albeit without Peyton Manning, a veteran-laden Thanksgiving Night clash between the Chicago Bears and the Green Bay Packers, and a public-interest showdown between the underrated Cam Newton (Carolina) and the much-loved Tony Romo (Dallas); Week 12 of the NFL is certainly going to be one worthy of your full attention.
But what about NFL betting on the total lines? Where can you find the best value? Here is a look at what you can expect in the OVER/UNDER betting lines for all the 16 teams involved in the Thanksgiving Weekend NFL action.
Best UNDER NFL Betting Picks Week 12
Carolina at Dallas, UNDER 45
Though Cam Newton and Tony Romo are capable of piling up mega scores, the key NFL betting trends in this game suggest that the opposite will be happening this Thursday. For starters, Carolina has allowed just 16.2 points and 315.0 yards per game in all their four games this season. In their last two games against Washington and Tennessee, they have even been better, allowing an average of 13.0 points and 264.0 yards per game. Meanwhile, the Cowboys are 8-1 UNDER in their last home games when the total is placed at 44.5 or more points, and they gave up 28 or less points in their previous game. Added to the fact that the Cowboys have been playing splendidly in their last two games (against Miami and Tampa Bay), allowing an average of 12.0 points and 268.5 yards per game in those contests, we believe a tight game could be in the offing here, setting up a high likelihood for a tame cagey scoring affair.
Buffalo at Kansas City, *UNDER
The biggest reason behind K-City’s success isn’t just in the fact that Alex Smith and Co. are playing better attacking football, but is also largely creditable to their improved Justin Houstin-led defense that has held the Chiefs’ last four opponents to a total of just 39 total points. Against a Buffalo team that has recently struggled offensively due to Tyrod Taylor’s injuries and E.J. Manuel’s challenged efficiency, it’s hard to see Buffalo pouring solid points here, even if LeSean McCoy may have a good game here. Meanwhile, Buffalo’s defense has been the real deal (ask Tom Brady and the Pats who could only muster 20 points against them at the Gillette Stadium last week), which should prevent the Chiefs from also lighting up the scoreboard. This game will therefore be a low-scoring encounter that is likely to combine for less than 40 points, thus paying UNDER total bettors.
“I think Tyrod is going to play. He feels better than he did. The doctors feel he’s going to be just fine.” pic.twitter.com/tBuapivXDs
— Buffalo Bills (@buffalobills) November 25, 2015
New Orleans at Houston, UNDER 47
A week after they’d used their mean defense to hold Bengals to 10 points and no offensive TD in Cincinnati, J.J. Watt (eight total tackles, two sacks, three tackles for a loss, three pressures and two forced holding calls against the Jets) and the Texans showed up big time again last week, limiting New York to just 260 total yards to beat them in astounding fashion. With that considered, it’s hard to see Drew Brees and his inconsistent offense doing any better this Sunday. Meanwhile, Houston’s offense has been far from fluid, often relying on a TD or two (with a couple of field goals) to win games, and the same trend looks to continue here. A low-scoring game therefore seems likely here for an UNDER 47 total.
Miami at New York Jets, UNDER 42.5
Over their last five games, the Jets have scored more than 20 points just twice, with the team sporting four losses in those five outings. The struggles by Jets QB Ryan Fitzpatrick have been among the main reason behind the offensive slack, with the quarterback passing for just 409 yards with three TDs against four interceptions in his last two games (which came against Buffalo and Houston). It won’t be getting any easier for the Harvard graduate this weekend, as he will be going against Miami’s defense that has seen a surge in recent games, led by their top offseason acquisition Ndamukong Suh. The same story goes for the Ryan Tannehill-led Miami offense that has also been struggling in its last five games, averaging 14.2 PPG scoring in that five-game span. For their Sunday encounter, you can therefore expect both teams to struggle offensively, as the two opposing defenses take center stage. With that, it looks highly likely that this game will be begetting an UNDER total.
Best OVER NFL Picks Week 12
Pittsburgh at Seattle, OVER 45.5
The Legion of Boom is no longer what it used to be, something that is affirmed by the fact that the Seahawks have conceded 27 or more points five times this season. Against a talented QB in Ben Roethlisberger, who is coming fresh off a bye with his Pittsburgh teammates, you can be sure that the Steelers will use perimeter speed to frustrate Seattle’s defense and score around 20-30 points. Meanwhile, Russell Wilson hasn’t been as solid in his passing game, but he’s been aided quite serviceably in the offense by his running backs, mainly Marshawn Lynch, and most recently, Thomas Rawls, who started in place of the injured Lynch last week and starred with 209 rushing yards and two touchdowns. With Lynch out for a couple more weeks, expect Wilson and Rawls to get a good number of touches, taking advantage of Pittsburgh’s equally questionable run defense to score 20-plus points, thus helping to push the scores high enough for an OVER.
Arizona at San Francisco, OVER 45
Carson Palmer arguably gets the most favorable matchup of the week, facing a Niners (3-7) team that lost to the Cardinals by 40 points earlier this season. After recording back-to-back quality wins over the Seahawks (on the road in Week 10) and the Bengals (at home in Week 11), Palmers and the Cardinals (8-2) should be able to further solidified their hold of the No. 1 spot in the NFC West with a fifth straight win that will almost definitely come by a double-digit margin in a high-scoring thriller.
New England at Denver, OVER 44.5
Speaking on Tuesday, Denver head coach Gary Kubiak said, Peyton Manning’s “foot will be in a cast for at least a week,” meaning Brock Osweiler will get another start in Manning’s absence. The fourth-year backup QB made his first career start last week and went 20 of 27 for 250 yards and two touchdowns, leading the Broncos to a narrow win over the Bears. Impressive as those numbers are, Osweiler will be facing a much tougher defense in New England, and a more explosive offense, led by Tom Brady who is the front-runner in this year’s NFL MVP odds alongside Cam Newton. So, even with Denver’s defense doing its job dutifully as always, and Osweiler offering decent signal-calling services in the offense, this game looks most likely to end in a big win that will allow the total to go over.
Other Total (OVER/UNDER) Betting Picks for Week 12
• Philadelphia at Detroit, UNDER 45.5
• Chicago at Green Bay, OVER 46.5
• Minnesota at Atlanta, UNDER 46
• St. Louis at Cincinnati, OVER 42
• San Diego at Jacksonville, OVER 46
• Oakland at Tennessee, OVER 44
• Tampa Bay at Indianapolis, UNDER 46.5
• New York Giants at Washington, OVER 47
• Baltimore at Cleveland, UNDER 41.5