Seattle is flying high after a Week 8 win over division rival San Francisco

Stephen Brashear AP

After we saw a handful of upsets in Week 8, teams enter the back half of their schedules some are vying for playoff positions while others are struggling to keep their season alive.

Week 8 saw the Titans, Packers, Browns, and Rams get upset by their opponents. The Seahawks and Steelers picked up impressive victories to keep their foothold among the top teams. Tom Brady and his Buccaneers barely escaped with a Monday Night Football win over the Giants. Dallas' woes continued on Sunday night as they lost to the Eagles and failed to score a touchdown for the second consecutive week.

Let's take a look at the Week 9 power rankings based on what we've seen so far this season.



32. New York Jets (0-8, Last Week 32 +/- 0) - Gross.

31. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-6, Last Week 31, +/- 0) - Should have traded Gardner Minshew at the deadline.

30. New York Giants (1-7, Last Week 30, +/- 0) - Looked competitive against Tampa Bay in Week 8, but the outlook for the season still looks bleak.

29. Dallas Cowboys (2-6, Last Week 29, +/- 0) - Should have traded for Gardner Minshew at the deadline.

28. Washington Football Team (2-5, Last Week 28, +/- 0) - Football Team gets the Giants coming off their bye week and will hope to get continued production from Antonio Gibson to put a win streak together.

27. New England Patriots (2-5, Last Week 26, - 1) - The Pats fell just short against Buffalo in a game that could've gotten their season back on track, at least from a record standpoint. Instead they're at the bottom of the division looking up and in unfamiliar territory at this point in the season.

26. Houston Texans (1-6, Last Week 24, - 2) - The Texans come out of their bye week with the Jaguars, Browns, Patriots, and Lions on their schedule. This stretch could put them back in the playoff picture if Deshaun Watson can will them to some wins.

25. Chicago Bears (5-3, Last Week 18, - 7) - The Bears lost in OT to the Saints in Week 8, and they slide down seven spots this week. Although they looked better offensively in this game, we need to see it on a more consistent basis.

24. Carolina Panthers (3-5, Last Week 17, -7) - The potential of Christian McCaffrey this week may reverse the drop the Panthers took in the rankings this week. They managed to go 3-3 while McCaffrey was injured behind good play from Teddy Bridgewater and Mike Davis. Their division is competitive, but they're within arm's length of a wildcard spot once they get CMC back.

23. Los Angeles Chargers (2-5, Last Week 21, - 2) - The Chargers lost a close one in Week 8 to the Broncos 31-30. Justin Herbert continues to impress however, and Mike Williams appears to be getting in sync with the rookie QB.

22. Detroit Lions (3-4, Last Week 14, - 8) - After looking better with Kenny Golladay in the lineup, the Lions got blown out 41-21 by the Colts in Week 8 knocking them down a few spots this week.

21. Denver Broncos (3-4, Last Week 27, + 6) - A good comeback victory against a surging Chargers team behind the play of Justin Herbert caught our attention. Resulting in Denver being a big mover on the list this week in the right direction.

20. Las Vegas Raiders (4-3, Last Week 19, - 1) - The Raiders dominated the Browns offense and really should have won by a lot more. The Raiders lose a spot this week due to their average performance against a flat Cleveland team in Week 8.

19. Cincinnati Bengals (2-5-1, Last Week 25, + 6) - The Bengals had an impressive win over the Titans last week and resulted in them jumping up six spots this week. They're on a bye this week and have the Steelers in Weeks 10 and 15. But in between those games Cincinnati plays Washington, the Giants, Miami, and Dallas. While the playoffs are probably out of the question in a competitive AFC, what Joe Burrow and the Bengals have done this year at least makes you wonder Who Dey?

18. Atlanta Falcons (2-6, Last Week 23, + 5) - The Falcons seem higher on this list than they should be, but their potential has been close to the surface all season and they seem poised to breakout. Their five spot jump is preemptive to what we expect to see from them the rest of the way out.

17. Minnesota Vikings (2-5, Last Week 20, +3) - It looks like Dalvin Cook is healthy and he has been the most explosive runner in the NFL when healthy. He is leading the league in rushing touchdowns and has been the focal point of that offense that includes a developing Justin Jefferson opening up the passing game. Like Atlanta, the Vikings benefit from the direction we see them going in.

16. Philadelphia Eagles (3-4-1, Last Week 22, + 6) - Speaking of teams making big jumps we see the Eagles(!) making a six spot jump up our rankings this week. They have won two in a row and appear to be the clear favorites to win the NFC East. Even if they finish under .500 they still project to be a division winner.

15. Cleveland Browns (5-3, Last Week 11, - 4) - After throwing for five touchdowns in Week 7, Baker Mayfield fell flat on his face in an awful loss to the Raiders in Week 8. The Browns are now without Odell Beckham and need Nick Chubb to return from IR to help boost the running game to the level we saw earlier in the season. This is a good spot for them as they're season is teetering and could go either way depending on the next few weeks.

14. Miami Dolphins (4-3, Last Week 15, + 1) - Tua Tagovailoa got his first NFL win in the first start of his professional career but the Dolphins' defense and special teams helped out adding a fumble returned for a touchdown and a punt return for a touchdown to beat the Rams in Week 8.

13. Los Angeles Rams (5-3, Last Week 13, +/- 0) - The Rams five wins are against the Eagles, Cowboys, Redskins, Giants, and Bears. Their three losses have come against the Dolphins, 49ers, and Bills. Something is askew and we should know who the real Rams are after the next couple weeks.

12. San Francisco 49ers (4-4, Last Week 12, +/- 0) - Jimmy Garoppolo and George Kittle went down with injuries in Week 8 and it looks like Kittle will be gone for at least eight weeks. Why do they remain at 12 this week in the rankings? Kyle Shanahan has done an extraordinary job with this team through injuries so far, and until he proves unable to keep up, I'm keeping the faith in him.

11. Indianapolis Colts (5-2, Last Week 16, + 5) - The Colts trounced the Lions last week and hope to keep that offensive momentum going as they'll have Baltimore this week.

10. Baltimore Ravens (5-2, Last Week 8, - 2) - This seems like a really low spot for Baltimore and it is. But keep in mind they dropped a few spots the prior week just because they were on a bye and they took a loss in which Lamar Jackson looked pretty bad. They don't drop further though because that bad loss was to the undefeated Steelers and that nasty defense.

9. Arizona Cardinals (5-2, Last Week 7, - 2) - Arizona coming off the bye drops a couple spots, but are riding a three game winning streak into their Week 9 matchup with the Dolphins.

8. New Orleans Saints (5-2, Last Week 10, + 2) - Winners of four straight, the Saints will hope to keep the momentum going against Tom Brady and the Buccaneers this week.

7. Tennessee Titans (5-2, Last Week 4, - 3) - Losers of two straight, the Titans want to avoid a mid season slide after starting out 5-0. The loss to the Steelers wasn't alarming, but dropping a Week 8 game to the Bengals certainly raises a flag.

6. Buffalo Bills (6-2, Last Week 9, +3) - Even though they haven't looked their best the past two weeks in division matchups against the Jets and the Patriots, the Bills have managed to win. They will have the Seahawks, Cardinals, and Chargers over their next three games with a bye scheduled for Week 11.

5. Green Bay Packers (5-2, Last Week 6, + 1) - The Packers dropped their second game in three weeks as they lost to the Vikings in Week 8. They don't lose much ground in the rankings though because of what we've seen out of Aaron Rodgers this season. Once they get healthy we expect the Packers to finish the season as NFC North champions.

4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-2, Last Week 3, - 1) - The Bucs drop a spot here because of the struggle they had closing out the Giants on Monday night. They shouldn't have been in a position where they were needing to come back and it feels like they were overlooking this game and their opponents.

3. Seattle Seahawks (6-1, Last Week 5, + 2) - The Seahawks had an impressive win over division rival, San Francisco last week. Russell Wilson had four touchdown passes while Seattle was without their top two running backs in Week 8.

2. Kansas City Chiefs (7-1, Last Week 2 +/- 0) - KC took care of business against the Jets handling them easily. They have Carolina this week before their bye and they're in the driver's seat to win the AFC West.

1. Pittsburgh Steelers (7-0, Last Week 1, +/-0) - The Steelers had an important division win against the Ravens in Week 8 allowing them to remain undefeated. Turnovers made the difference in that game and the Pittsburgh defense continues to be one of the most feared in the league. The Steelers have the Cowboys, Bengals, and Jaguars over their next three games before taking on the Ravens for the second time. The path for them heading into that game 10-0 is pretty clear.


Andrew Wiggins and Jayson Tatum

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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.

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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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Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors

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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.

Boston Celtics, NBA Finals Game 3

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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.

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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.

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