VSiN’s NFL expert takes a look at three Week 14 games that might be worth betting early.
Saints (-6, 43.5) at Jets:
Taysom Hill was 19 of 41 with four interceptions against the Cowboys last week and he is also suffering from “Mallet Finger,” which sounds like a ska band from the ’90s. Hill will try to play through the injury, but the Saints could opt to go back to Trevor Siemian with his 57.2 percent completion rate.
The Saints have been a complete mess at the quarterback position. So are Jets, which is unfortunate because they used the No. 2 pick on Zach Wilson, who has thrown 11 interceptions vs. six touchdowns. It might take these teams two games to score 43.5 points with the quarterback play we’ve seen to this point. Neither team can really run the football either, as the Jets and Saints are both below the league average in yards per carry. Weather could be a factor, given that it’s December, but even if not, these are two inept offenses.
Pick: Under 43.5.
49ers at Bengals (-1, 47.5):
Teams that are just finding out what it’s like to be in the playoff picture after a long hiatus can sometimes fall short of expectations. That happened to the Bengals this past week. After blowing out the rival Steelers, Cincinnati dug a 24-0 hole against the Chargers. It was a desperate Chargers bunch, but the Bengals still have no excuse for how the game started and the lopsided finish.
San Francisco will be the second consecutive California team to go west to east for a kickoff on the banks of the Ohio River. Even though Joe Burrow has to deal with a dislocated pinky finger, the Bengals QB and his mates should be ready to go from the jump this week. They aren’t coming off of a historic win against a division rival. They’re coming off of a humbling performance that set them back in the AFC playoff chase.
The 49ers had a tough outing of their own, losing to the rival Seahawks to stop a three-game winning streak. It is true that San Francisco will be one of the better offenses that Cincinnati has faced this season, but the Bengals are extremely stout against the run and we saw how much the 49ers struggled without Deebo Samuel last week. He’s likely to miss this week as well.
I wouldn’t call it a buy-low spot on the Bengals, but this is a good situation. The 49ers are on their second long trip east in four weeks and had a Week 6 bye, so they’re in a tough spot here.
Pick: Bengals -1.
Cowboys (-4, 49) at Washington:
The Cowboys get some extra rest here after playing a second consecutive Thursday game. It comes at a good time, as Dallas has had numerous COVID and injury issues in recent weeks. The opponent, however, comes at a bad time.
Washington has improved quickly over the last few weeks, as some positive regression has hit on third down and in the red zone. Defensively, the Football Team has also been better lately. It had held five straight opponents to fewer than 305 yards and fewer than 20 first downs before the Raiders had 310 yards and 21 first d owns to eke over those totals.
The Cowboys do have a strong offense, but they also have a suspect defense. Washington also has something of a coaching edge here, especially with how Ron Rivera’s team has really turned things around.
Pick: Washington +4.