2021 Week 1: NFL Best Bets

We went 3-2 with our bets last week, but because we placed twice as many units on the Chargers-Eagles game, we came away with +2 units last Sunday.

Can't complain about making money. Hopefully, you are following our advice, as we are now 12-8 over the last four weeks.

Week 9 was a wild ride full of crazy upsets. The Bills lost to the Jaguars 9-6, the Dallas Cowboys were dominated by the Denver Broncos, Cleveland defeated their AFC North rivals in the Cincinnati Bengals, the New York Giants escaped with a victory over the Las Vegas Raiders, the Saints lost on a last-second field goal to the Atlanta Falcons, and the Rams were outplayed by the Tennessee Titans on Sunday Night Football despite the absence of Derrick Henry.

If you thought we would get a return to normalcy in Week 10, you were very much wrong as the Baltimore Ravens got spanked by the Miami Dolphins in primetime on Thursday Night Football. 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 FantasySP, 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.

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WEEK 10 NFL BEST BETS

Kansas City Chiefs at Las Vegas Raiders (+2.5)

What in the world is going on in Kansas City? The Chiefs barely escaped against the Giants in Week 8, and almost lost to a Green Bay Packers team that was missing MVP candidate Aaron Rodgers in Week 9. Although Kansas City is coming off back-to-back victories, the team is not performing at a high level. The offense is what is most concerning as Patrick Mahomes has been somewhat careless with the football, and Tyreek Hill has had to really struggle for every single yard. Kansas City only posted 13 points against a Packers secondary missing their two best corners in Jaire Alexander and Eric Stokes. That said, I think this is a get-right game for Mahomes and the offense. The defense has actually played pretty well as of late, allowing just 16 points per game over their last four contests, in which the team has a 3-1 record.

As of the publication of this article, 64% of bets on the spread have been in favor of the Chiefs. But more importantly, 76% of the money is on the Chiefs. That means that professional gamblers are placing large sums on Mahomes to get it together in Vegas this Sunday. With an over/under of 52 points, we are likely looking at a high-scoring affair. Look for Mahomes to eclipse 300 yards and find both Hill and Travis Kelce for touchdowns.

The Pick: Chiefs (-2.5)

Prediction: 31-23 Chiefs

Bonus Bet: Over 52 points

Cleveland Browns at New England Patriots (-2.5)

Cleveland will be without the services of Nick Chubb, who is coming off a huge 137-yard performance with two trips to the end zone. Kareem Hunt is still on Injured Reserve and Odell Beckham Jr. has been waived and claimed by the Los Angeles Rams. While the Beckham news might actually be good for Baker Mayfield and the Browns, Cleveland is a run-first offense and will have to rely on D'Ernest Johnson. Even Demetric Felton and John Kelly have been ruled out with COVID-19, so Johnson's backup running back is still unclear up to this point. Johnson could be the only healthy running back ready to suit up.

Meanwhile, New England has dominated the Browns in Foxborough over the last 30 years. The last time that the Browns defeated the Patriots in Foxborough was back in 1992. Although only 47% of bets are on the Patriots against the spread, a whopping 67% of the money is backing New England even as 2.5-point favorites. The high-stakes professionals clearly believe in rookie Mac Jones and Bill Belichick. New England may have running back concerns of their own as Damien Harris and rookie Rhamondre Stevenson are still in the concussion protocol and are unlikely to suit up on Sunday. However, Brandon Bolden and J.J. Taylor have proven to be fairly efficient. New England's defense has been playing great defense and I think this is the game where Mac Jones proves he is here to stay in the NFL. This one will come down to the wire, but I'm expecting New England to barely cover.

Pick: Patriots (-2.5)

Prediction: 27-24 Patriots

Atlanta Falcons at Dallas Cowboys (-9)

The Cowboys were essentially blanked by the Denver Broncos last week before scoring two late garbage-time touchdowns to make the score somewhat respectable. After losing money on the Cowboys last week, I'm going back to the well. I think this is the perfect opportunity for Dak Prescott to air it out against an Atlanta Falcons secondary that has struggled all season long. CeeDee Lamb is going to have his best game of the season against the team that passed on him in the NFL Draft.

While the Falcons are coming off a huge victory over the Saints, I don't think Matt Ryan will be able to keep up with Dallas' potent offense. Without Calvin Ridley, his only real weapons are rookie tight end Kyle Pitts, and perhaps the best story of the year in Cordarrelle Patterson. Did you know that Patterson has more scrimmage yards than Dalvin Cook, more receptions than DeAndre Hopkins, more touchdowns than Travis Kelce, and more yards per catch than Tyreek Hill? Yeah, I didn't think so. Still, it will take the Falcons playing at their very best to keep up with Prescott, Zeke, Lamb, and Amari Cooper, plus an offensive line that is anchored by Tyron Smith. Dallas is 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 games dating back to last season. Look for them to increase that number to 9-2.

Pick: Cowboys (-9)

Prediction: 34-21 Cowboys

Bonus: Lamb OVER yards and receptions

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Washington Football Team (+9.5)

The only team that came somewhat close to ending Tom Brady's quest for a Super Bowl in his debut season with the Bucs was Washington. Taylor Heinicke did a remarkable job in the Wild Card game last season, and he'll get another chance in Week 10. It looks like the Bucs could be without the services of Chris Godwin. If so, I think it's very hard to pass on taking Washington and the points. Even if Godwin plays, Heinicke has played well in Ryan Fitzpatrick's absence, and tight end Logan Thomas is expected to make his long-awaited return. Call it a gut feeling, but I think Chase Young forces a sack-fumble that Washington takes back to the house. Still, Tampa should win this game, but I am very comfortable betting on Washington against the spread. Consider a parlay with the over as well. After all, Washington has been allowing the most points per game to opposing teams and Tom Brady will look to get back on track after losing to the Saints in Week 8 before Tampa's bye week.

Pick: Football Team (+9.5)

Prediction: 31-27 Buccaneers

Bonus: Over 51 points

Minnesota Vikings at Los Angeles Chargers (-3.5)

Has any team played in as many one-possession contests as the Vikings? No. The question is whether the Vikings will be able to win this game outright on the road or at least cover the spread. Minnesota is 7-3 in their last 10 games as road underdogs. Considering Dalvin Cook will still be suiting up despite the domestic abuse rumors swirling around that locker room, I expect Minnesota to try to slow the game down and keep the ball out of Justin Herbert's hands as much as possible by giving Cook the rock. Minnesota has said they are going to throw the ball more, and they should with Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen catching passes from Kirk Cousins, but it's hard not to give one of the best running backs in the league the ball 25 times per game. The Chargers' defense has been very generous to opposing running backs so Cook should steamroll Joey Bosa and the Los Angeles defensive line. While I think the Chargers still escape with a victory, Los Angeles will need a game-winning field goal to get the victory.

Pick: Vikings (+3.5)

Prediction: 27-24 Chargers

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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