Into Week 13 of the NFL season and the playoff races are heating up in both conferences. It’s a tricky schedule week lacking in playable games as the market ratings have normalized on most of these teams at this point in the NFL season.
We’ll take a look at a couple spots and look to extract some value. Good luck with all of your bets in Week 13, folks!
The Pittsburgh Steelers looked like a reinvented unit in Week 12 beating the Bengals 16-10 on the road. While 16 points isn’t much to write home about, their offense looked and felt a lot different after firing OC Matt Canada. For what seems like the first time all season, the Steelers allowed QB Kenny Pickett to attempt passes over the middle instead of forcing the ball to the sideline all game.
The running game also looked much more effective as we’ve yet to have a game where Jaylen Warren and Najee Harris are running the ball well at the same time. We will take this with a grain of salt against a very poor Cincinnati Bengals team, but the silver lining…their opponent in Week 13.
The Cardinals rank as the #30 team in defensive DVOA and are ranked dead last by PFF in run defense. The Steelers don’t need to be an elite offensive unit to put points up against this Cardinals team. Playing at home, I think their offensive uptrend will continue in Week 13.
The Cardinals are happy to have Kyler Murray back under center, but while his individual play has been solid, the overall offense still isn’t very good. In Week 13 the Cardinals have listed Marquise Brown, Trey McBride, and Michael Wilson on the injury report with the two wide receivers as DNP in Thursday’s practice.
Reports suggest that Brown and McBride will go, however, they’ll be banged up against a physical Pittsburgh defense in rainy conditions. Things are not looking good for Arizona on the road this Sunday and the market has agreed.
The Steelers reopened at -5.5 after a lookahead line of -3.5. Since then, the market continues to push the Steelers up as some shops are showing as high as -6.5.
I’m happy to pick up the stray -5.5 -115 at FanDuel and would still recommend this bet at -6 -110 at other shops. Tracking a 1% play for the Steelers -5.5.
Here’s another ugly game between the (1-10) Panthers who just fired head coach Frank Reich and the (4-7) Tampa Bay Bucs dealing with injuries across the board. After the Panther’s bye, many were intrigued by a potential offensive philosophy change when Frank Reich handed play calling duties to OC Thomas Brown.
Not much changed despite the Panthers picking up their first win, so Reich took play calling duties back before being fired. Much has been speculated about the Panthers culture owner owner David Tepper and it seems like there’s been a lot of competing personalities hindering the growth of Bryce Young and this offense.
I’m not sure that all is solved with Reich being gone, but interim HC Chris Tabor got rid of multiple other staff members and is seemingly instituting his own philosophy for the Panthers down the stretch.
Looking over at the Bucs side, Baker Mayfield is questionable with an ankle injury, as is WR Chris Godwin. For better and for worse Mayfield has been known to fight through injury in his career and is likely to attempt to suit up unless he is forced to sit out.
I think either iteration of the Bucs offense whether it be an injured Mayfield, or an untested Kyle Trask is not suited for a strong offensive output against a Panthers defense that is quietly getting healthier. There is potential for star CB Jaycee Horn to return to action this week to shore up this secondary.
I’m playing the under here for 1% at 37 at DK as this feels like a game played in the teens. We’ve seen some strong offensive outputs from the Bucs at different points during the season, but that’s usually been as a result of needing to fight back in games.
While the new look Panthers will bring an element of surprise to the matchup, I don’t think either team will be particularly aggressive on offense and shouldn’t put either unit in a game state that will require any up-tempo offense.
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