Fairway’s Football Forecast – NFL Week 17 Underdog Picks And Preview
Identifying NFL Week 17 Underdog Picks and Bets
A good start to Week 16 with the Raiders (+3) cover in a last second loss to the Dolphins, 26-25. The Jets (+10 bet down to +6.5) cashed for us outright in their win over the Browns. Those results kept the Dolphins (10-5) alive in the playoff picture into NFL Week 17 action with the Browns (10-5) still needing to win or have a few teams lose in Week 17 to make the playoffs. Cleveland still has a 72% chance to make the playoffs, accoring to FiveThirtyEight’s playoff predictions model. The Dolphins are at 60%, but I made a case against the Dolphins making the playoffs weeks ago and believe their good fortune finally runs out in Week 17 at Buffalo.
The 2-2 result in Week 16 runs our YTD record to 22-25 ATS on these pages picking only underdogs. The completion of year 4 will be this week, and the underdog record is 99-79 (55.6%).
Week 17 can be a tricky one with more variables in play. Whether you play to win (we do when betting), or make it a light week (like the Chiefs and Steelers), do your best and understand the changing market and movement. Here were the lines and totals on the Week 17 games from William Hill, along with the betting action and percentages heading into New Year’s Day.
It's the last week of the Pro 🏈 Regular Season and playoff spots are on the line!
William Hill has odds up for all 16 games taking place on Sunday. 👀 which teams bettors are backing.
Latest odds, trends and more ⬇️
— William Hill US (@WilliamHillUS) December 31, 2020
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NFL Week 17 Underdog Picks
108 New York Giants (+1.5 / +2, -115) vs Dallas – Giants Moneyline +105
128 San Francisco (+6.5 / +7) vs Seattle – 49ers Moneyline +250
130 Denver Broncos (+2.5 / +3, -115) vs Las Vegas Raiders – Broncos Moneyline +135
Las Vegas at Denver
Speaking of history, let’s go back to Week 10 when the Raiders routed the Broncos 37-12. A misleading final for certain depsite the Raiders 203-66 rushing yards dominance. But five Broncos turnovers including four interceptions were part of a disastrous day for Broncos QB Drew Lock. We’ve had some solid success when betting on or against the Raiders (7-8) this season cashing in as ‘Dog in both games against the Chiefs, and the only team to beat Kansas City this season. Then the last two weeks, we cashed in again on the Raiders (+3) as underdog in a Week 16 loss to the Dolphins 26-27, and the Chargers (+3) in Week 15 in a 30-27 overtime win. A home loss as ‘Dog to Indianapolis in Week 14 makes it three straight losses at home for the Raiders. Let’s hope they get it together next season with fans in the stands, as I hope to attend a few games as media in the new Allegiant Stadium.
But as Playbook notes, NFL road teams off three consecutive home losses are 1-8 SU in division games since 1980. Now we’ll use the lack of motivation and back-to-back gut wrenching losses to cash in against the Raiders in the season finale versus the Broncos (5-10). This team is cooked, no matter what coach Jon Gruden says about still playing to win and looking to finish 8-8. There is nothing to like about the Raiders this week, even against the worst team in the AFC West (Denver Broncos). Both teams are banged up and beaten. Yet 86% of the spread bets are on Las Vegas according to Sports Insights, which is now ActionLabs and part of the Action Network. They track betting activity from seven leading online sportsbooks.
Broncos coach Vic Fangio knows how to coach defense and get his players to respond. That’s something no coach has been able to do with the defificient and disastrous defense of the Raiders. Las Vegas couldn’t make stops when needed the last two weeks and it cost them a shot at the playoffs. Do you really think they are going to bring their best effort, focus and play well at Denver? No, nada, not a chance. Broncos outright in redemption.
Dallas at New York
The Cowboys (6-9) are the hottest team in the worst division with three straight wins. Can’t get too excited about that considering they beat the depleted and decimated Eagles, 49ers and Bengals. The Dallas defense is so deficient, allowing 390 yards per game adn 5.9 yards per play. Opponents run nearly 67 plays per game against the Dallas’ defense. Over the last three games, it’s a league-worst 74 plays per game. That’s against quarterbacks like Jalen Hurts, Nick Mullens and Brandon Allen – all backups until the starters were injured or replaced. The Dallas defense is deficient and wearing down. The Cowboys offense managed just 272 yards against the Bengals, but a plus-3 turnover edge played a big part in victory. In fact, Dallas was plus-4 in turonvers against San Francisco when the 49ers out-gained the Cowboys 458-291 and Dallas got lucky in victory again. Then last week another plus-2 turnover advantage against the Eagles.
The Giants (5-10) have had their own injured quarterback with Danny Dimes unable to stay healthy. He’s been sacked 12 times in his last two starts. The G-men have the NFC’s worst offense averaging 297 yards per game and 17 points per game. That includes just 238 YPG the past three contests – all losses by at least two touchdowns while managing just 22, 25 and 26 minutes of possession time. The Giants did find a way to stun the Seahawks in Seattle 17-12 before its current 3-game losing streak and they rushed for 190 yards that day. The running game has been poor the past three games, but the ground game will certainly be the focus in this match-ups against the Cowboys league-worst run defense allowing 161 rushing yards per game. The advance line on this game was the Giants -3 or 3.5, and Dallas got as high as -2.5 before dipping back down with sharp action on the Giants. Dallas has the superior receivers and momentum. But they have been so inconsistent this season; like their coach Mike McCarthy. Home underdog with the better defense and (hopefully) running game gets the call in a game that will put the winner a Washington Sunday night loss away from winning the worst division in NFL history. Two out of every three bettors believe that will be the Cowboys. I wouldn’t bet on it.
Read more at osga, and best wishes in your pursuit of profit during the 2021 playoffs. See you next season as well for more Fairway Football Forecasts.