Welcome to our Week 14 edition of NFL Best Bets!
On the season, we are now 22-13 with our recommendations. Not to mention, a bunch of our bonus picks hit so if you made parlays with the right selections, you could be up tons of cash. If you have been following our picks, you are likely making some serious money this NFL season.
After a crazy month of upsets and surprising finishes, Week 13 was a strangely normal affair across the NFL. Almost all of the massively favored teams not only won but covered the spread, including the Buccaneers over the Falcons (favored by 11 points), the Rams over the Jaguars (favored by 14 points), and the Chiefs over the Raiders (favored by 9.5 points). The biggest upset of the week was the Detroit Lions defeating the Minnesota Vikings on a last-second 11-yard strike from Jared Goff to rookie wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown. However, we recommend the Lions against the spread, so it actually wasn’t that much of a surprise.
There are just five weeks left in the regular season as we inch closer to Christmas. Let’s celebrate early by hitting our wagers in Week 14. December is usually the month when teams start to separate from the rest of the pack, however, the playoff picture is very unclear outside of a few of the top teams in each conference. A whopping 12 teams in the AFC have a .500 or better record. Four of those squads will go head-to-head in pivotal division matchups. Week 14 will be capped off on Monday night with the first-place Arizona Cardinals taking on the second-place Los Angeles Rams in a battle between two NFC West division foes.
Week 14 kicked off with a matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Minnesota Vikings. Unsurprisingly, the Vikings were involved in another one-possession game. After getting crushed the first three quarters of the game, Ben Roethlisberger came just a few yards short of leading the Steelers to an improbable comeback. However, Minnesota made a last-second stand, forcing an incomplete pass as time expired, the opposite of what they did in Week 13 against the Lions. Minnesota covered the spread and won the game, 36-28. The Steelers are now 6-6-1 while the Vikings are 6-7.
As the postseason picture begins to become more clear, it’s time to gear up for this week’s edition of NFL best bets. It takes a lot of energy and research to have success over the course of a season when it comes to sports betting. Here at Fantasy SP, we are committed to helping you cash. Remember, if you win 55% of your bets, you are a really good gambler. We are looking at some eye-opening odds this week and will help you decipher the best games to place your money on, whether it’s moneylines, over-unders, or prop bets. With that, let’s dive in.
WEEK 14 NFL BEST BETS
Although the public is backing the Browns with 72% of the spread bets on Cleveland to cover, this is a great opportunity to make a contrarian bet. The Baltimore Ravens are coming off an emotional loss to the Steelers last week, in which they failed to convert a two-point conversion, and lost by a single point. In retrospect, they probably should have kicked the field goal and forced overtime, but it’s hard to fault head coach John Harbaugh for the gutsy call. Lamar Jackson has connected with Mark Andrews eight of nine times for touchdowns within the five-yard line. The Ravens very well could have won that game and everyone would be praising Harbaugh for his surprising play call.
The 8-4 Ravens no longer sit atop the AFC standings and face a 6-6 Cleveland Browns squad battling for postseason life. Although the Browns are favored in this game, this would be a toss-up if they were playing on a neutral field. When looking at both rosters, Baltimore is clearly the superior team. They have a better point margin, a better quarterback by a mile, and perhaps the best defensive line in the NFL when it comes to stopping the run. Cleveland won’t be able to rely on Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt in this contest. Baltimore has stuffed a league-high 29% of rushers at or behind the line of scrimmage this season. The Ravens are going to force Baker Mayfield to beat them through the air.
When these two teams met in Week 12, Chubb and Hunt combined for just 36 rushing yards on 15 carries. And despite picking off Jackson a staggering four times, the Ravens still defeated the Browns, 16-10. I think we are looking at another low-scoring affair in which the Ravens shut down Cleveland’s running game, and Jackson does just enough on offense to escape FirstEnergy stadium with a road victory. You can take the Ravens against the spread, but I think they will win outright.
- Pick: Ravens (+130)
- Prediction: 19-17 Ravens
Washington is on a four-game winning streak and controls their own destiny with all five of their remaining games in the division, including two against the first-place Cowboys. Meanwhile, the Cowboys have been all over the place this past month.
Washington narrowly escaped the last two weeks with 17-15 victories over the Seattle Seahawks and Las Vegas Raiders. They didn’t look like the better team in either contest though. Quarterback Taylor Heinicke is playing very good, mistake-free football, but both the offensive and defensive line are riddled with injuries. Star pass rushers Chase Young and Montez Sweat are out for the season. Plus, J.D. McKissic could be sidelined for another game and tight end Logan Thomas was placed on Injured Reserve after suffering a nasty knee injury last week.
Dallas had indeed struggled in recent weeks, but it’s important to look at the context. Dak Prescott missed Week 8, top-tier left tackle Tyron Smith missed the next three weeks, and wide receivers Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb missed most of Week 11 and Week 12. With all their playmakers back in the lineup last week against the New Orleans Saints, Dallas put together a convincing 27-17 victory.
Not only did the offense come together last week, but the defense also played one if its best contests, forcing Taysom Hill to throw an eye-popping four interceptions. Prescott is 19-8 against the spread in career division games and has covered 70% of the time. Dallas is also 2-0 in division games this season. I would have been more comfortable with the 3.5-point spread from earlier in the week, but I would still lay the points and take Dallas.
- Pick: Cowboys (-4.5)
- Prediction: 24-17 Cowboys
The Rams snapped their three-game losing streak by absolutely crushing the Jacksonville Jaguars last week. However, they have to head to Arizona to take on the first-place Cardinals in Week 14. In the last meeting between these two teams, Arizona took care of business on the road, defeating the Rams by a score of 37-20. Don’t expect another lopsided affair, but the Cardinals should win this game with Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins back in the lineup, not to mention the likely return of pass-catching running back Chase Edmonds.
Only one team has been better against the spread than the Cardinals this season. Arizona is 9-3 against the spread while the Packers are 10-2. The Cardinals are a whopping 9-1 against the spread in victories this season. The only time they didn’t cover in a game they won was back in Week 2 against the Vikings. Considering how good Murray looked under center last week, bettors should back the Cardinals at home in Week 14. Kyler threw two touchdowns and ran for an additional two scores in Arizona’s thrashing of the Chicago Bears last week.
Although the Rams looked much better on offense last week, they are still getting used to playing without Robert Woods and with Odell Beckham Jr. Matthew Stafford got back on track but hasn’t looked like the same quarterback in the second half of the season as he did earlier on in the year.
Plus, Arizona will clinch a playoff berth if they win, and will essentially wrap up the division. They would have a three-game lead over the Rams with a Week 15 date with the 1-10-1 Detroit Lions on the horizon. The Cardinals have a more complete roster in all three phases of the game and have played much more consistently, even when Colt McCoy was filling in for the injured Kyler Murray. Although three points is a decent margin in a divisional matchup, I like the Cardinals at home. I’m also taking the over in a contest between two high-powered offenses. Although only 40% of the bets are on the over, 60% of the money expects this game to exceed the 51.5-point total. Follow the “smart money” in this situation.
- Pick: Cardinals (-3)
- Bonus: Over 51.5 points
- Prediction: 30-24 Cardinals
The Jets have lost three straight games against the spread at home while New Orleans is 3-2 against the spread in its last five road games. The Jets are just 2-6 against the spread when Zach Wilson starts at quarterback this season. This is a battle between two struggling franchises, as the Saints have lost five straight contests and have failed to cover in their last three losses. However, the easy opponent should help the Saints get back on track in Week 14.
With Taysom Hill under center, the Jets are going to struggle on defense. They have allowed the third-most rushing yards and the most rushing touchdowns this season. And in five career starts with Hill as the quarterback, the Saints are averaging 170 rushing yards per game. Plus, the Jets permitted just shy of 200 total rushing yards to an Eagles offense that was playing without Jalen Hurts last week.
With Alvin Kamara expected to make his long-awaited return this week, the Saints should breeze to an easy victory. Sean Payton is going to run the offense similar to the way Bill Belichick did last week against the Bills. Hill probably won’t even throw the ball 20 times, as New Orleans should be able to move the ball in large chunks between Hill and Kamara in the backfield. Plus, the New York Jets lost wide receiver Corey Davis for the season, and rookie running back Michael Carter is still sidelined. That leaves the ineffective Tevin Coleman as New York’s starting running back. The Saints are one of the better defenses at stopping the run, which means the Jets will have to rely on their rookie quarterback to move the chains. Although fellow rookie, Elijah Moore, has emerged as one of the top receivers from this year’s draft class, shut-down cornerback Marshon Lattimore will likely shadow Moore wherever he goes on Sunday.
This could be a very long day for Gang Green. Lay the points and take the Saints on the road in Week 14. Both teams have really struggled to put up points recently, so I would also gravitate towards the under in this contest. The public seems to agree, as 66% of best on the over-under are siding with the under.
- Pick: Saints (-5.5)
- Bonus: Under 43 points
- Prediction: 24-16 Saints
Despite the spread ballooning once it became clear that Mike Glennon would be starting for the injured Daniel Jones, we bet against the Giants last week and it paid off. This week, the G-Men have an even more formidable opponent in the Chargers, but with Jake Fromm set to make his first NFL start, it’s hard to envision the Giants doing much of anything on offense. With Glennon under center last week against the Dolphins, the Giants failed to score a touchdown. New York is incredibly banged up on both sides of the football and Saquon Barkley has yet to look like himself this season.
Meanwhile, the Chargers are coming off their most complete victory of the season after defeating the Cincinnati Bengals 41-22 last week. Although Austin Ekeler, Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, and Joey Bosa all appeared on the injury report, it appears that all four pivotal playmakers will suit up in Week 14. I don’t love the massive line in this game, but Justin Herbert should be able to cover the double-digit spread at home against an inferior opponent.
- Pick: Chargers (-10)
- Prediction: 30-16 Chargers
Top Week 14 Player Props
- Antonio Gibson over 66.5 rushing yards (-110)
- Taysom Hill over 51.5 rushing yards (-110)
- Josh Allen under 300.5 passing yards (-115)
- Trevor Lawrence under 216.5 passing yards (-110)
- Jared Goff over 20.5 completions (-110)
- Matt Ryan over 230.5 passing yards (+110)
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In Game 5 of the NBA Finals, the Warriors defended the home floor to take a 3-2 lead in the finals over the Boston Celtics. Largely, this is because Boston was careless with the basketball. The Warriors tallied nine steals and forced 18 turnovers by the Celtics. In contrast, the Warriors only got the ball stolen twice and turned the ball over just six times Monday night. While Stephen Curry was guarded ferociously and was held to just 16 points on 7-of-22 shooting (and 0-9 from downtown), his teammates stepped up.
Andrew Wiggins had another huge double-double, scoring 26 points (12-23 FG) and hauling in 13 rebounds. Finally, if the Celtics hope to win in Game 6, they will need to stay awake in the fourth quarter. Over the last two games, Boston has fallen asleep at the end of the game while the Warriors managed to sneak away with two consecutive victories.
Let's take a look at some of tonight's best bets for this huge NBA Finals Game 6.
Please Note: All betting odds were correct today as of 2:00 pm EST from Caesars Sportsbook
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Best Bets of the Night
Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics -4 (GSW Leads 3-2)
NBA Finals Best Bet #1: Boston Celtics -4 (-110)
It’s difficult to envision the Boston Celtics collapsing in the fourth quarter in three consecutive games. The Celtics may briefly watch the tape from Game 5 but they are going to have to shake it off and move forward immediately. Boston’s carelessness with the basketball Monday night should produce a much-needed wake-up call that will allow the team to make smarter passes and take fewer risks on offense against a Golden State defense that has surged over the last two games.
While Steph will likely score more than 16 points in Game 6, Jaylen Brown must have a bounce-back performance after going 5-of-18 for 18 points in Game 5. Though the Celtics shot above 40% from the field on Monday night, they turned the ball over at an uncharacteristic rate, finishing the night with 18 turnovers. Some of those were unforced errors while the Warriors earned nine steals as well.
At home in Game 6, the Celtics will play better and bring this 2022 NBA Finals series to a blockbuster Game 7 at the Chase Center. For NBA fans wishing for a seven-game series in the 2022 Finals and bettors looking to cash in on Game 6, Boston will win by at least four points at home in a win-or-go-home scenario. Jayson Tatum has yet to play his best basketball this series with Andrew Wiggins playing lethal defense but tonight will be the night that he finally drops 30+ points. Although Steve Kerr seems to think his squad is ready to close out the series, he may have to think again given how well Boston has bounced back from losses this postseason.
Don’t forget that the Celtics were in a three-game to two-game deficit against the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals yet found a way to come out victorious. They may not be able to win two straight against Golden State but it’s tough to imagine the Warriors defeating the Celtics in three consecutive matchups. Boston wins by a few possessions: 110-104.
NBA Finals Best Bet #2: Over (O/U) 210 Total Points (-110)
Though only 204 points were scored between both teams in Game 5 (BOS 97 - 107 GSW), Game 6 will be a higher-scoring contest for multiple reasons. First, Jaylen Brown will have a bounce-back night. After being held to 18 points on 27.8% shooting from the field on Monday, Brown will almost certainly play more efficiently and score more in Game 6. Additionally, Boston had way fewer scoring opportunities due to their whopping 18 turnovers. Ima Udoke will make sure his starters take care of the ball in a game that can decide Boston’s fate. Marcus Smart and Al Horford have come up huge as role players but Tatum needs to really shift into an entirely new gear. Don’t be surprised if that happens tonight.
The story through Games 4 and 5 has been the same. Golden State has stepped it up on defense, managing to out-rebound the Celtics in both contests. Robert Williams III might have something to say about that tonight. In Game 6, the Celtics should be more cautious with the ball and therefore have more opportunities than they did over the last two contests. Meanwhile, the Warriors are always expected to drop at least 105+ points.
NBA Player Props
Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics -4 (GSW Leads 3-2)
Prop #1: Andrew Wiggins To Record a Double-Double (+225)
Throughout these NBA Finals, Andrew Wiggins has been on an absolute tear. Just over the last two contests where he finished both with double-doubles, he’s recorded 29 rebounds and 43 points. He has adapted his style of play and is spending more time down low in the post to help the Warriors out on the glass. Wiggins is putting significant pressure on Robert Williams III, Al Horford, and Jayson Tatum to rebounds the ball more efficiently. Not only is Wiggins keeping his scoring numbers up, he’s drastically improved on the defensive end to record 49 rebounds (9.8 rebounds per game in the Finals) through the first five games of this series. Wiggins’ shift to focus on rebounding and keeping the pressure down low has worked brilliantly for the Warriors over the last two games, both of which they won. In Game 6, expect him to continue to do what has been working, giving him a great chance to produce a third consecutive double-double in the NBA Finals. Perhaps he can even win the NBA Finals MVP Award if he continues to play at this level. Wiggins has been the true x-factor for the Dubs in this series.
Prop #2: Jaylen Brown Over 24.5 Points (-110)
After a rough shooting night in Game 5 where Brown only converted on five of his 18 shots from the field, he should wake up and score 25+ points in Game 6 at TD Garden. While you may want to stick away from three-point shooting props involving brown right now, he’ll hit the over in points tonight at the TD Garden. Brown has only scored over 24 points in one of five games this series (27 points in Game 3) but the Celtics do much better when Brown and Tatum perform like the perennial All-Stars that they are.
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In Game 4 of the 2022 NBA Finals, Stephen Curry and the Warriors executed exactly where they didn’t in Game 3 to tie up the series 2-2. Notably, Golden State dominated down low Friday night after being outrebounded and suffocated by the Celtics in Game 3. As a team, the Warriors recorded 16 offensive boards for a total of 55 rebounds for the night. For instance, Draymond Green struggled Wednesday night to finish the night with only four rebounds and three assists before fouling out in the fourth quarter.
In Game 4, Draymond dominated down low for eight rebounds, eight assists, and four steals without getting himself into foul trouble (only three PFs for Green in Game 4 after fouling out in Game 3).
Best Bets of the Night
Game: Boston Celtics at Golden State Warriors - 4 (-110)
Similar to Game 3, both teams shot the ball rather evenly. The Warriors finished the night with 44% shooting from the field, and 34.9% from downtown. The Celtics converted 40% of the field goal attempts and 39.5% of their shots from deep. One factor which helped Golden State keep up with the Celtics throughout the game was terrific rebounding. Andrew Wiggins stepped it up off the glass to produce a 17-point and 16-rebound double-double. What really caused the Celtics to lose in Game 3 was a complete offensive collapse in the fourth quarter.
With seven minutes remaining in the game, the Celtics had a 91-86 lead over Golden State. That means Boston was outscored 21-6 in the second half of the fourth quarter to lose Game 4 107-97. With Golden State back home, expect their offense to shoot better than they did on the road and secure a home victory in Game 5.
Bet: Golden State Warriors -4 (-110)
Throughout the 2022 NBA Playoffs, the Warriors shot 49.4% from the field and 40.7% from downtown in 11 games played at home. For their nine road games, the Warriors were less efficient on average averaging 47.2 FG% (2.2% less efficient from the field) and 34.9% (-5.8% less efficient from 3PT range). The numbers reveal clearly that for the 2022 NBA Playoffs, the Warriors have been more efficient scoring. With the prospect of taking a 3-2 lead over the Celtics, its likely that Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson have another big night in front of the home crowd.
Bet: Over (O/U) 212.5 Total Points (-110)
While only 204 points were scored in Game 4, expect Game 5 to be a much higher-scoring game. In addition to the Warriors shooting much better from the field, the team seems to have found some efficiency against the bigger Celtics down low. These two factors could push the Warriors to score 120+ points in Game 5. In turn, Jayson Tatum who scored 23 points (8-23 FG) will bounce back to have a 30+ point game. Both he and Steph are scoring big these NBA Finals.
While the defense was the main story of Games 3 and 4 at the TD Garden, scoring buckets will be the principal feature of Game 5 at the Chase Center. With him and Stephen Curry averaging more than 34 PPG through these finals, you can count on Game 5 in Golden State to be a high-scoring game.
NBA Player Props
Game: Boston Celtics at Golden State Warriors - 4 (-110)
Prop: Jayson Tatum, Over 26.5 Points
Jayson Tatum, like the rest of the Celtics, started hot but finished ice cold. If it wasn’t for the fourth quarter where Tatum shot the ball multiple times unsuccessfully. This negatively impacted his shooting numbers from Game 4 where he finished the night with 23 points (8-23 FG) converting only 34.9% of his shots taken. After a disappointing Friday night, Tatum will shoot more efficiently in Game 5. Since he still scored 23 points on an off-night, you can count on Tatum to score 30+ points in Game 5 even if the Warriors defeat the Celtics.
Prop: Andrew Wiggins, Over 6.5 Rebounds
One of the major adjustments made by the Warriors in Game 4 was boosting their presence off the glass. Andrew Wiggins recorded 16 of Golden State’s 55 rebounds Friday night.
Through the first four games of the NBA Finals, Wiggins has recorded a total of 34 rebounds. That means Wiggins is averaging 8.5 rebounds per game in the 2022 NBA Finals. Especially because the Warriors know how effective he was producing much-needed rebounds in Game 4, Wiggins will look to have a similar presence down-low in Game 5.
In Game 3, both teams shot almost equally well from the field and from downtown. However, Boston took more shots from the field and dominated off the glass to take Game 3 116-100. Boston’s defensive energy was on full display Wednesday night as they outrebounded and drew countless fouls from the Warriors. Boston’s defense was the story of Game 3. Will Klay Thompson and Stephen Curry overwhelm the Celtics in Game 4?
Let’s take a look at some of tonight’s best bets for Game 4 of the 2022 NBA Finals.
Best Bets of the Night
Game: Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics Game 4 (BOS Leads 2-1)
In Game 3, both teams shot virtually as efficiently from the field. The Celtics converted 48.3% of their shots (43-89 FG) from the field and went 37.1% from downtown. Golden State finished the night with a 46.2 FG% (36-78 FG) as a team, converting 37.5% from beyond the arc. The main reason for the Celtics’ victory was fantastic defense. For instance, Robert Williams III who isn’t 100% healthy, played 26 minutes to produce 10 points, eight rebounds, and four blocks. The Celtics dominated the Warriors off the glass to record 47 rebounds as a team with 15 of them recorded on the offensive end. In contrast, the Warriors totaled 31 rebounds on the game and only had six offensive rebounds. In addition, the Warriors committed 23 personal fouls allowing the Celtics to go to the line 24 times (Celtics were 17-24 FT) and had 16 turnovers as a team. For the Warriors to bounce back in Game 4, they will need to be more aggressive down low and less sloppy on the floor.
Bet #1: Golden State Warriors, +4 (-110)
The Warriors shot the ball well in Game 3, but were simply overwhelmed by the Celtics defense and the energy at the TD Garden Wednesday night. Golden State recorded 39 combined turnovers (16) and personal fouls (23) which demonstrates how sloppy they were with the basketball. This gave Boston a possession advantage throughout the game, ultimately allowing the Celtics to take 11 more field goal attempts and finish the night with seven more made FGs than the Warriors. Offensive efficiency is not the issue for the Warriors. Rather, they will need to ramp it up on defense in Game 4 to make the game interesting. Draymond Green fouled out of the contest after being shut down all night. Green was held to just two points, four rebounds, three assists, and two turnovers in 35 minutes on the floor before getting a sixth personal foul in Game 3.
Bet #2: Over (O/U) 215 Total Points (-110)
Though the Warriors were held to 100 points of offense on Wednesday night, they shot the ball well. Golden State was limited as a team for FGAs as a result of Boston’s defense. In Game 4, Golden State will have an answer to put up more points on the board than they did in Game 3. In turn, the Celtics will keep things interesting. Expect this Game 4 to be a high-scoring contest. Both teams have been scoring big throughout these playoffs, and that doesn't seem to be changing right now during the Finals.
NBA Player Props
Game: Golden State Warriors at Boston Celtics Game 4 (BOS Leads 2-1)
Prop #1: Klay Thompson, Over 19.5 Points
Klay Thompson started the night shooting very well but cooled down towards the end. He went five for a whopping 13 attempts from downtown Wednesday night. He finished the night 7-of-17 from the field for 25 points. This comes after a terrible Game 2 performance where Klay went 4-of-19 from the field and only one-of-eight from beyond-the-arc. Tonight, Klay will shoot better tonight after an average Game 3 performance and bad Games 1 and 2.
Prop #2: Jaylen Brown, Over 2.5 Threes
Jaylen Brown has been knocking his shots from downtown as of late. In the last two games, he’s recorded at least three threes. He’s gone 7-of-17 (41.1%) from downtown through Games 2 and 3 combined. In the second of two home games at the TD Garden, it’s likely that Brown knocks down at least three buckets from beyond-the-arc tonight in Game 4.