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Lamar Jackson

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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.

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WEEK 14 NFL BEST BETS

Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns (-3)

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

Dallas Cowboys at Washington Football Team (+4.5)

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

Struggling to figure out who to start this week? Utilize FantasySP’s Start / Sit Tool to find out which player has a better chance at success to help you win your fantasy football matchup!

Los Angeles Rams at Arizona Cardinals (-2.5)

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

New Orleans Saints at New York Jets (+5.5)

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

New York Giants at Los Angeles Chargers (-10)

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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