NFL Thursday Night Football Public Betting Trends Heading Into Week 14

Mike Tomlin

USA Today Sports

Week 14 of the NFL season kicks off with the Minnesota Vikings hosting the Pittsburgh Steelers at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Both teams are in win-or-go-home mode, as each franchise is clinging onto a potential postseason appearance. The Steelers are coming off a pivotal upset victory over the Baltimore Ravens whereas the Minnesota Vikings were upset by the Detroit Lions. The Vikings are currently three-point favorites despite the absence of star wide receiver Adam Thielen.

Betting on the NFL makes the game more exciting among fans. Monitoring public betting trends is one of the most pivotal tools used by professional handicappers to find the top wagers in the sports betting marketplace. Public betting trends allow you to track which teams the public is chasing and which teams professional gamblers are high on each and every week. Whether you want to tail or fade the public, knowing the public betting trends (bet percentages and money percentages) is pivotal when determining which teams to back. So without further ado, let’s take a look at who the public likes in Week 13’s Thursday Night Football matchup, and where you should place your wagers.

Note: The lines and public betting trends are always changing so be sure to check out FantasySP for the latest odds and trends.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Minnesota Vikings (-3)

The playoff race in each conference has become very tight. Nothing is guaranteed aside from a few teams at the top of their respective conferences. After fending off the Ravens in Week 13, the Steelers are ranked eighth in the AFC. They are behind the Los Angeles Chargers, Cincinnati Bengals, and Buffalo Bills in the Wild Card race.

Ben Roethlisberger has taken a significant step back in his production this season, partially due to the several injuries and ailments he has had to endure. Big Ben is no longer the master of the deep ball and barely slinging it more than 20 yards. The Steelers are 21st in total offense. They have the 14th ranked passing offense and the 28th ranked run offense despite drafting rookie running back Najee Harris in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft.

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After losing 29-27 to the winless Lions last week, the Vikings are in major need of a victory tonight, especially if Mike Zimmer wants to keep his job as head coach. Let’s not forget that the Steelers didn’t fare much better against the Lions earlier this season when they had countless opportunities to win, but finished the game with the first and only tie of the season.

The Vikings were missing star running back Dalvin Cook, but Alexander Mattison played well in his absence. Once Thielen went down, Kirk Cousins had no choice but to rely pretty much exclusively on All-Pro wideout Justin Jefferson. Jefferson did his job against the Lions, hauling in a season-high 11 receptions for 182 yards and a touchdown. Despite the second-year receiver’s phenomenal outing, it just wasn’t enough for the Vikings to escape Ford Field with a victory. Cousins completed 75% of his pass attempts for 340 yards and two touchdowns. It was the Vikings' defense that really let the team down. Minnesota’s secondary was in far too soft of a coverage formation on the last play of the game that allowed Jared Goff to throw an 11-yard strike to rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown for the game-winning score. Minnesota’s defense will have to improve if they have any shot at defeating the Steelers tonight.

The Vikings have played more one-possession games (11) than anyone in the NFL. All but one of their contests this season have been decided by one score. Minnesota is a bit of an enigma this season, almost impossible to predict. Fortunately for the Vikings, it appears Dalvin Cook will at least try to suit up for tonight’s pivotal matchup. Thielen will be out but Cook’s presence opens things up for the entire offense.

However, it’s difficult to back the Vikings when they are the favorites this season, especially when the spread is so minimal. Minnesota is 1-9 as favorites against the spread in their last 10 games while the Steelers are 7-3 as underdogs against the spread over their last 10 games. The public seems to be backing Minnesota, but this is a situation when I would fade the public. A whopping 68% of the money on spread bets is currently backing the Vikings. That’s why the spread has jumped back up to 3.5 points on some sportsbooks.

The only reason Minnesota is being favored is that they are the home team. Typically, Vegas oddsmakers automatically give the home team a 2.8-point advantage. If this game were to be played on neutral grounds, there probably wouldn’t even be a spread, as this would likely be a coin flip. Both the Steelers and Vikings rank similarly in many key categories.

Despite Cook’s potential return to the lineup, it’s hard to envision him being at full strength after the severity of the shoulder injury he suffered back in Week 12. Pittsburgh’s defense isn’t what it used to be, but T.J. Watt has been perhaps the best defensive player in the entire NFL this season. Something tells me that he and the rest of the Steelers’ defense will be ready to shut down Minnesota’s run-heavy approach. That will mean that Kirk Cousins will be forced to beat Pittsburgh’s secondary with Justin Jefferson, K.J. Osborn, and tight end Tyler Conklin. Expect Jefferson to be double-teamed with Thielen out of the lineup. The Steelers are going to force the Vikings to beat them with their least reliable playmakers.

All that said, I think the Vikings will continue to play very close games. Pittsburgh’s offense isn’t anything to write home about either. Big Ben is simply a shell of the quarterback he once was and is unable to hit his receivers on the deep ball, which is what Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson are best at. However, the Vikings have allowed the fourth-most rushing yards this season, which means Pittsburgh will likely rely on Najee Harris to move the chains.

In a game that should be a low-scoring affair and come down to the wire, I like the Steelers on the road. They are flying high after knocking off their AFC North division rival from the top spot in the conference while the Vikings are in survival mode after suffering the worst upset of the season last week.

One of the biggest differences between these two teams is the head coaches that run the show. The Vikings lack synergy and rumors of Mike Zimmer’s potential firing can create a very uncomfortable atmosphere in the locker room. Mike Tomlin, however, runs a very tight ship and has the respect of all his players. The Steelers have never had a losing season in Tomlin’s 14-year tenure as Pittsburgh’s head coach. Many teams would have imploded following Pittsburgh’s tie with the Lions, but Tomlin did an excellent job at getting the Steelers back on track.

The Steelers should win this game because they are more effective on defense and are a bit healthier on offense. Minnesota also has a propensity to play down or up to their opponent’s level. The Vikings are a team that follows the pace of their opponent, rather than setting the tempo. Tomlin will get to determine how this game unfolds, and he will make sure that the game script plays to his roster’s strengths. The Steelers will run the ball a lot and use the play-action pass to move the chains. Pittsburgh will also put as much pressure on Kirk Cousins as he can handle. And while the Vikings are very difficult to predict in terms of how well they will play, their play calling is very easy to predict. Tomlin will make sure his defense dials in on Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook (if he indeed suits up).

Last week, Tomlin bested John Harbaugh, and called the Ravens’ two-point attempt at the very end of the game “predictable.” Something tells me he will have no problem taking advantage of the Vikings’ and Zimmer’s predictable nature as well.

Pick: Steelers (+3)

Prediction: 23-21 Steelers

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Until now, there was a void in the industry. An all-in-one prop bet research tool for Over/Under rankings did not exist. Fantasy SP has changed that.

Of course, you could find betting trends on the internet but there wasn’t a place where you could have all the information for every single player on the same page at your fingertips. Well, we wanted to change that. We’ve created the definitive NFL prop bet research tool for pros and newbies alike.

In a typical NFL week, there can be over 1,000 player prop lines available. Traditional player game logs are not optimal for researching player props. Our unique tool allows you to quickly analyze thousands of lines on your phone, tablet, or computer, and find the props with the greatest value. Don’t just bet on the players you like. Become more data-driven with your props research by using Fantasy SP’s Player Prop Over/Under Rankings!

This is the perfect prop bet research tool to make some serious cash. Place informed bets using relevant analytics and increase your chances of seeing your bankroll increase.

All | Pass Yds | Pass TDs| Pass Comp | Pass Att | Rush Att | Rush Yds | Rec | Rec Yds

Unique Features

With our brand-new Player Prop Over/Under Rankings Research Tool, users will be able to filter by tons of critical data points including home vs. away, favorite vs. underdog, player popularity, last few games, indoor vs. outdoor, specific props, specific teams, position rank, opponent rank, and so much more!

Research Prop Bet Betting Example

Okay, enough talk, and let’s get to a simple real-world example of how to use the tool to help you place a bet.

For example, Jared Goff has had some of the most ridiculous home/away splits in 2022.

Goff has a passer rating of 106.9 with 2,217 yards (277.1 yards per game), 20 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions in eight games at home this season. Pretty good, right? On the road, he has a passer rating of 82.5 with 1,387 yards (231.2 yards per game), 3 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions in six games.

As you can see, Goff is averaging 46 more yards per game at home in 2022 entering Week 16. Vegas may try to trick you when Goff is on the road after coming off a massive home game but by using our tool, you won’t be fooled.

Goff has a 5-3 O-U record on his passing yard props at Ford Field this season. While his average line at home on DraftKings is 247 yards, his average result is 277.1 passing yards. Prior to throwing for 250+ yards against the Jets at the Meadowlands in Week 15, he was 2-3 on his passing yards props on the road. His average line on DraftKings on the road was only 10 yards fewer heading into Week 15 yet he averaged a full 50 fewer yards per game (227). This shows a clear pattern that he is much more successful at hitting the over and much more efficient when playing in front of his home crowd. There are countless examples of patterns you can spot using this brand-new prop tool that are even more eye-popping than Goff’s numbers.

How to Find Favorable Prop Bets

The key to placing informed bets is to place bets on clear patterns. Ideally, you want to see a player consistently going over or under. Grab a concise list of potential bets to place and compare to the lines at your favorite operator.

Let’s say you want to place a passing yards prop bet on Tom Brady. You check all the lines at your favorite operator (we suggest Caesars or FanDuel) and need to put his line into context. How often does he go over? What outcomes occur against an easy matchup? What is his average result? How does he do at home versus on the road?

Using our exclusive Over-Under Rankings, you can utilize our premium filters to find out Brady’s historical prop record at home versus the road is even more volatile than Goff’s splits. (This is good and what we want to see.)

At home, Brady is averaging a whopping 307.3 passing yards and has hit the over in six of seven games heading into Week 15.

On the road, while his average line is only two yards fewer (271.2 to 269.2), he has a 1-5 O-U record and is only averaging 239 passing yards per game.

Fantasy SP has just highlighted a very promising prop bet whenever Brady is at home. Take the over. And when he is on the road, it’s a prime spot to smash the under.

Some players also tend to do much better when their team is the favorite such as running backs late in the fourth quarter when their team needs to kill time. Heading into Week 15, Dalvin Cook had a 7-2 O-U rushing yard record when his team was the favorite (79.9 yards per game). Conversely, when the Vikings were underdogs, he was 1-3 (57.8 yards per game). This is why filtering by favorite or underdog can be a critical data point to help you gain an edge at sportsbooks.

You can also filter by the last few games in case a player has begun to heat up or cool off. These filters will help you nail your bets in very specific scenarios. It’s the perfect tool for situational prop betting.

What the Experts Are Saying

Don’t simply trust our word. We provided a free preview to professional bettors and journalists and this is what they had to say:

“I don’t place my player prop parlays until checking out Fantasy SP’s Prop Bet Rankings. This is the only place where I can get an in-depth historical analysis of every player in the League before placing my wagers!”

Matthew Rumack, Professional Sports Bettor

“This tool provides insight that I haven’t seen anywhere else in the sports betting industry. Fantasy SP has developed something truly unique. The premium filters that allow me to figure out how each player has performed in very specific situations are simply next-level. I will not be placing prop bets before using this tool for research!”

Mark Morales-Smith, Senior Fantasy & Gambling Writer

“The features of this prop research tool are simply awesome. It’s easy to use, easy to understand, and incredibly powerful. There is so much data at your fingertips. This is an essential piece to finding player prop betting value.”

Dan Hickman, Professional Gambling Writer

The dropdowns and filters on this tool are what really make this a game-changing feature. If you only want to see the most popular players on the page, simply slide the popularity to 75% or 100%. If you want to see players’ over-under records and their average results for only home games, simply click Home on the dropdown. If you want to see over-under records for players against teams in the bottom 5 at defending that position, simply click Bottom 5 under Position Rank. Not only can you get all of this insight, but the sliders and dropdowns all work interactively with a user-friendly interface so you can find out how a player is doing in a very specific situation. For example, let’s say Dak Prescott and the Cowboys are hosting the top-five San Francisco 49ers defense and are four-point underdogs. To get a much clearer picture of how Prescott has performed in similar situations, you can check off Home, Underdog, Indoor, and Top 5 under Opponent Rank to get his exact over-under prop historical record in this particular situation. If he is 0-3 on his passing yard prop in this scenario, you may want to smash the under.

Wrap-Up

NFL prop betting can be overwhelming but this tool makes it easy to research the best bets for novices and seasoned vets alike. Bettors should not be placing their prop bets before doing the necessary research. Now you can do all that research on one page with Fantasy SP’s Player Prop Over/Under Rankings Research Tool! It doesn’t get much better than that.

Stay tuned for our future article on even more in-depth tips and tricks.

2022 World Cup Best Bets, Team Props, and Futures
2022 World Cup Best Bets, Team Props, and Futures

Picking up where they left off in 2018, the French National Team led by 23-year-old Kylian Mbappe have found their way back into the finals as they look to be the first back-to-back World Cup Champions since Brazil’s dominant runs in 1958 and 1962. Standing between that incredible feat for the defending champions is Argentina, who currently have their superstar, Lionel Messi, in top form. Messi is finding ways to create passes no one can see and he’s done it multiple times, assisting three goals (tied for the most) throughout the tournament. The legend is also scoring goals of his own and is tied with Kylian Mbappe (5 goals) for Golden Boot honors in this year’s World Cup. Regardless, soccer fans around the world are in for a treat on Sunday at 10:00 AM EST as two of the best players in the world face each other for their country’s World Cup glory.

After winning Group D, France defeated Poland in the Round of 16, England in the quarterfinals, and a strong Morocco team in the semis to advance to the Final. On the other side of the bracket, Argentina won Group C and dispatched Australia in the Round of 16. Messi and the Argentinians were then tested in the quarterfinals, needing a penalty shootout to defeat the Netherlands after blowing a late two-goal lead. Finally, Argentina played perhaps their best match of the tournament against Croatia in the semi-finals, winning 3-0. Now the stage is set for a blockbuster finale between two powerhouses featuring some of the top players in the world.

Note (from FanDuel Sportsbook): No team will play at home during Qatar's World Cup. For betting purposes, FanDuel explains that: “Home Team refers to the team listed first, Away Team refers to the second team listed.”

Argentina (-104) vs. France (-112)

Argentina Keys To Victory

Lionel Messi has played incredibly for Argentina throughout this World Cup. He is leaving opposing defenders in the dust, taking on multiple players at once, dragging them away from his teammates, which is opening up the field for his fellow goal scorers. Every time Messi has the ball at his feet, there seems to be more than one threat. Messi is playing just as well as he always has in 2022. He’s served his team as a playmaker and as a goal-scorer in Qatar. He’s also had some help from Manchester City forward Julian Alvarez who’s scored a handful of goals in this World Cup (including two in Argentina’s decisive victory over Croatia). If Alvarez and Messi are able to link up while on the attack, the depleted French defense and midfield could be in for some trouble.

France Keys To Victory

One of the biggest headlines heading into this World Cup Final is the return of French striker Karim Benzema. The Real Madrid star and winner of this year’s Ballon D’Or hurt his hamstring in one of France’s first practices soon after arriving in Qatar. He flew back to Madrid where he immediately completed his recovery work which was set at three weeks from the time of injury. Right now, Benzema is flying back to Doha and could be starting for France in the final. At the moment, France’s HC Didier Deschamps has declined to comment on whether or not he will be including KB9 in the starting lineup. France’s ball movement has been excellent throughout the tournament, but their key to victory against Argentina will be efficient defense. Over the last few games, France’s defense seems to have slowed down. Not only will they need to stop Messi, but they will need to turn defensive stops into counterattacks. Mbappe and Olivier Giroud (four goals thus far in the tournament) will need to be electric on offense and test the Argentinian keeper. Antoine Griezmann may be an x-factor for France as he has three assists in this World Cup and was inches away from scoring against Morocco.

Conclusion

It’s only fitting that Lionel Messi will finally hoist the World Cup trophy in his last World Cup match. Expect him to score a goal and lead his team to victory in a tightly contested battle.

The Pick: Argentina (-104)

World Cup Final Best Prop Bets

Kylian Mbappe: To Score Or Give Assist (+100)

Mbappé has been relatively quiet over France’s last few games. Still, he is the main wing on France’s team who is capable of breaking down defenses through his skillful technique and ridiculous speed. He currently is tied with Messi for the most goals in the 2022 World Cup. If he isn’t able to score in this game, then expect him to at least make an assist. For France to win this one, the 23-year-old will need to have a big game.

Lionel Messi: Anytime Goalscorer (+190)

Messi has stepped up his performance big time this World Cup. If you have watched Argentina play in this tournament, you know how crucial of a role Messi has played in the team’s success. He is tied for the most goals in the tournament with Mbappe and has a great chance of putting the ball in the net at some point during Sunday’s big match. This is a particularly great prop to target since Messi takes all of Argentina’s penalty shots and has converted four-of-five throughout the tournament.

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Calling every sports fan across the globe! The best month for all things sports is here: December. NFL and CFB are getting into the thick of things — I mean, we are finally not seeing Alabama and Clemson in the CFP, not to mention both the NBA and NHL are underway and college basketball just tipped off!

Despite all of these different sporting events going on, the World’s biggest Sporting event is down to the Semifinals, the World Cup.

Although Soccer is the World's most popular sport, it still struggles to gain support in the US. However, every 4 years Soccer takes the country by storm and this year, and these last few games are going to be amazing.

Let us introduce you to your new go-to app, FanDuel Sportsbook. It’s the place to be for not only the usual sports, but for this year's World Cup!

FanDuel Sportsbook is providing a multitude of features with a few market differentiators.

  • Futures:
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    • Who will win the Golden Boot (the award for the top goal scorer of the World Cup)
    • Highest scoring Group
    • And more
  • Popular Markets - outside of the normal Moneyline, Spread & Over/Under lines, FanDuel will also be offering:
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    • First Goal Scorer
    • Shots on Goal
    • Correct Score
    • Number of Corner Kicks
    • Half-Time Result

Market Differentiators:

  • Tournament Goal Scorer Parlay Builder - build your own tournament-long Goal Scorer parlays with your favorite players from every team.
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    • Total daily goals
    • Player specials
    • And More!
  • Live Parlays

Out of all the betting apps we’ve used, signing up for FanDuel Sportsbook is also the easiest. Simply download the app and create an account by providing an email, credit card, and SS# — that’s to protect your winnings and ensure you're not a sporting professional.

FanDuel is undoubtedly the best site/app to parlay across multiple sports. It’s designed for bettors at any stage. The clear interface is ideal for beginners and you can make a bet in just a few clicks! It’s complete with a number of betting guides that explain the rules and resources to safely bet.

One of the best parts is that once the game ends, you can cash out your winnings right away. No minimum, no wait.

There’s also the incredible New User Offer: sign up with FanDuel Sportsbook and get up to $1000 in Free Bets if you lose your first bet!

Their app has everything you need — from tutorials to real-time game scores. Get amped for the World Cup with FanDuel Sportsbook. Enhance your Sportsember by downloading the FanDuel Sportsbook app today!

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