We had an outright underdog winner last week as the 49ers defeated the visiting Broncos, but it was not all lollipops and sunshine as the Bucs watched an 11-point lead drift away into a 28-14 loss to New Orleans. Let’s scope out the Week 15 slate and analyze a few live hounds that will add a few bucks to our bankroll.
Packers (5-7-1 SU, 5-7-1 ATS) at Bears (9-4 SU, 9-4 ATS) – Sunday, 1 PM ET
The best online sportsbooks, found over at Sportsbook Review, have tagged the Bears as six-point home chalk but this one is closer than that. Any team coming off of a huge win is always susceptible for a letdown the following week, and Chicago fits that description after knocking off the Rams last week 15-6. Meanwhile, Aaron Rodgers got what he wanted as his longtime head coach Mike McCarthy was unceremoniously dumped in order to appease the star quarterback. Although Rodgers didn’t pull the trigger he certainly set up the hit and the results last week, sans McCarthy, were encouraging as the Packers drilled the Falcons 34-20 after a stunning loss to the Cardinals the week prior.
Divisional games are always dicey, but we normally side with the team getting points, and in this case that side is the Packers. These teams met in Week 1 and Green Bay rallied from 20 down to score a 24-23 win. The Bears are tremendous at stopping the run, but Green Bay’s gameplan will be Rodgers throwing early and often. Cunning and guile will oftentimes beat youth and skill but the best part is Rodgers is actually getting another bonus in being deemed close to a touchdown underdog by the books.
Look, we know the Packers are 0-6 on the road straight up and 1-4-1 ATS but the Bears are 2-13 straight-up and 4-11 ATS against the Packers since 2011. Let’s grab those points, back a future Hall-of-Famer and cash that ticket with the Packers.
Cardinals (3-10 SU, 6-7 ATS) at Falcons (4-9 SU, 3-10 ATS) – Sunday, 1 PM ET
We know the Cardinals are bad, really bad, but are the Falcons nine points better? Although Matt Ryan will try to exploit the Arizona secondary, it should be noted that the Cards are ranked fourth in stopping the pass and seventh in sacks with 39 on the season. And let’s also not forget that Atlanta is just 2-11 against the spread when favored by seven or more points over their last 13 such occasions, a stat that dates back to 2012 when some of those Atlanta teams were actually very good. This edition is not even mediocre and the fact that some of the best online sportsbooks are hanging such a big number on them mystifies us.
The Falcons have only four wins on the season and three of those were by less than double-digits. The Cardinals offense is lousy and David Johnson is having an underwhelming season to be sure but rookie quarterback Josh Rosen has the ability to move the chains against subpar pass defenses and the Falcons certainly qualify in that regard. If trends are what you’re looking for then check these out:
- Cardinals are 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 vs. NFC.
- Cardinals are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring less than 15 points in their previous game.
- Falcons are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up loss.
- Falcons are 0-6 ATS vs. a team with a losing record.
What more needs to be said? Cardinals are a live road pup here and we’re all going to be a little richer after this one is through. Back Arizona.