Football picksDecember 23, 2021

Divisional Duels: Week 16 NFL Betting Trends and Predictions

Divisional duels highlight the Sunday NFL card and I have Week 16 NFL betting trends for all six divisional matchups.

divisional duels like ravens and bengals highlight week 16 sunday NFL

Ravens HC John Harbaugh will use revenge as a motivational tool in one of Sunday’s Week 16 divisional duels


Divisional Duels On Tap for Sunday

I’m just going to say it. The NFL’s new expanded playoff format is already a smashing success. In the AFC, 13 teams are still technically in the hunt for a postseason berth with records of .500 or better. The NFC picture is slightly more watered down, like those margaritas at an all-inclusive, but New Orleans, Philadelphia and Minnesota are making it interesting on the bubble. All three have a 7-7 record and that means that going into Week 16, no less than 22 NFL teams are still in the fight at .500 or better.

22 of the NFL’s 32 teams (69%), enter Week 16 with record of .500 or better

Week 16 kicks off with a trio of non-conference matchups on Thursday and Saturday, but then on Sunday the divisional tilts take over.

Tampa Bay (10-4) at Carolina (5-9)
Line: Bucs -10.5 and O/U 44

The Bucs are just 4-3 on the road this year but they get Carolina and the Jets over the next two weeks to help pad that record. And as bad as Tom Brady has looked against the Saints, his offense AFTER getting roughed up by Dennis Allen’s defense has come to life.

  • Tampa Bay is 3-1 SU/ATS after playing the Saints, scoring 31-46-31-19 points.

Divisional road faves like Tampa are also 24-12 OVER following a game where less than 21 total points were scored (3-0 OVER this year). It makes the Bucs’ team total worth a look.

New York Giants (4-10) at Philadelphia (7-7)
Line: Eagles -10 and O/U 40.5

This is a short turnaround for the Eagles after their 27-17 win over Washington on Tuesday but this is a good matchup, as down-and-out New York has been battered by injuries all season.

  • New York has lost six-straight December games SU/ATS, scoring 13 points or fewer in five of the six losses.

Five of the past six between these two have stayed UNDER including three-straight in Philly, but the Eagles are 7-0 SU since 2014 when hosting New York. Philly has scored 22-plus points in all seven wins, they just have to be careful leaving the backdoor open.

Baltimore (8-6) at Cincinnati (8-6)
Line: Bengals -3 and O/U 45

Remember when these two met in Week 7? Well so do the Ravens, but will revenge be enough motivation for this team given all the injuries and Covid they’ve faced?

  • John Harbaugh’s Ravens are 6-0 ATS in same-season divisional revenge games away from home since 2014.
  • In the second half of the season, road teams in tightly-lined games also hold a 46-19 ATS (71%) edge when coming off a straight up dog loss in which they covered the spread.

Baltimore’s past three losses were by a combined four points. For a team with such an elite field goal kicker (Justin Tucker) to lose so many close games, is both odd and rare. This game sets up like a war of attrition and with Cinci coming home off that low scoring win at Denver, the trends point towards another potentially low scoring game here (62%).

Get my computer prediction on this and every other NFL game, along with updated NFL odds and Consensus betting data.

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Classic Divisional Duels

The New England Patriots are back atop the AFC East standings and now the Bills are under pressure. Can Buffalo answer the call and even the series, or was last year a one-and-done performance for Josh Allen’s crew?

Buffalo (8-6) at New England (9-5)
Line: Patriots -2.5 and O/U 43.5

New England has long held the edge in this series (33-21 ATS), and they dominated the first meeting in harsh conditions, rushing for 222 yards with 32:01 time of possession. Since then, Buffalo has scored 27 and 31 points, splitting a pair of non-conference games.

  • Buffalo is 12-4 ATS after scoring 25-plus points in back-to-back games the past two years.

Check the weather and injury reports, as this figures to be much more offensively diverse than the first meeting when wind played a major factor. It’s for sure going to be one of the best divisional duels of the weekend.

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Denver (7-7) at Las Vegas (7-7)
Line: Pick em and O/U 41.5

The Raiders have had Denver’s number in recent years (5-0 ATS at home, 7-1 ATS overall), and took the first meeting 34-24 in Week 6. Denver had 34:33 time of possession in that game, held a 25-16 edge in first downs, and outrushed Vegas 112-86, but turned the ball over four times.

  • Denver is 11-2 ATS (85%) after scoring 14 points or less.
  • The Raiders are 6-18 (25%) off tight road wins by three points or less.

This isn’t like a trip to the Black Hole and Denver has all the motivation in the world to try and win this game, but they are going back to Drew Lock and he’s like the anti-lock to win anything. Proceed with caution.

Washington (6-8) at Dallas (10-4)
Line: Cowboys -10.5 and O/U 47

The Cowboys can clinch the division with a win, so the line on this game has been inflated by midweek and will likely continue to grow.

  • In the second half of the season, the road team in divisional Sunday Night Football games is 23-14 ATS (62%).

This is one of those divisional duels where if you’re going to play the dog, you wait. If you’re going to play the fave, you hopefully already bet on them.

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