NFL Week 13 best bets
Welcome to Week 13 of the 2022 NFL season.
Throughout the season, our VSiN experts will combine to give their best bets on every game. Check back for more picks as we get closer to kickoff.
Odds are from DraftKings (unless noted) as of Friday night. Go to VSiN.com for Betting Splits for each game and live odds across the NFL market.
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Dave Tuley: The Vikings (9-2) continue to roll on in their dream season, but this game means a lot more to the playoff-hopeful Jets (7-4) as the Vikes have opened up a five-game lead in the NFC North on the second-place Lions (yes, you read that right).
The Jets have had a roller-coaster of a season as their No. 5 defense helped them win games in spite of starting QB Zach Wilson. Coach Robert Saleh made the move to Mike White (22-for-28, 315 passing yards, 3 TDs) in Week 12, and it paid off in a 31-10 rout of the Bears. It shouldn’t necessarily get harder for White against a Minnesota defense that is No. 31 in yards allowed per game.
Jets backers were able to grab +3.5 on Sunday. Early money dropped the line to +3 everywhere, and some have gone to Jets +3 -115; however, there’s still hope that the line movement might reverse as 72% of the bets at DraftKings sportsbooks have been on the Vikings -3 as well as 72% of the money (current figures can be found on the VSiN Betting Splits page).
Pick: Jets +3
Wes Reynolds: The Vikings defeated the Patriots last week on Thanksgiving night as 2.5-point favorites. Now they only lay -3 to the Jets, who the Patriots swept? Hmmmm.
This is because the oddsmakers understand the perception of these two teams are skewed. In reality, the Jets are the better team by most metrics and that includes being led on offense most of the season by Zach Wilson, who was benched last week in favor of Mike White.
The Jets actually rank better in Overall DVOA (9th vs. 22nd), Offense DVOA (18th vs. 20th), Defense DVOA (4th vs. 23rd), and Special Teams DVOA (17th vs. 20th).
Minnesota earned its eighth single-digit win last week by defeating New England, and it was a slightly fluky win by the numbers. A long kickoff return touchdown proved to be the difference, as the Patriots had a 7.4 to 5.4 ypp advantage.
Kirk Cousins has had one of his worst years statistically in recent years as his completion percentage (2021- 66.3%, 2022 - 65.0%), QB rating (2021 - 103.1, 2022 - 88.6), yards per game (2021 - 263.8, 2022: 250.9), and yards per attempt (2021 - 7.5, 2022 - 6.7) are all down from a year ago. He has also been sacked 28 times in 11 games and was sacked 28 times in 16 games last season. However, he is winning games, and that is what matters. Nonetheless, Cousins is 16-29-2 ATS off a SU win since 2017.
The Jets are now a team with confidence and new energy since Robert Saleh made the QB switch from Wilson to White.
Pick: Jets +3
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Dave Tuley: I can already hear the moans from readers: “You’re betting on the Broncos?” Granted, the Broncos have been a dumpster fire on offense this season, ranking No. 25 in yards per game despite the off-season acquisition of Russell Wilson, but they still have the No. 5 defense that has kept them in several games.
But when it comes down to it, this is more of a bet against the Ravens as they’ve led by 9 points or more in every game so far this season; however, they blew their fourth fourth-quarter lead of the season in Sunday’s 28-27 loss to the Jaguars and are just 5-6 ATS as they tend to let teams stick around.
Besides, if looking for a common opponent, the Broncos beat the Jaguars 21-17 in Week 8, so we see no reason they can’t stay within a TD of the Ravens.
Pick: Broncos +8.5
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Dave Tuley: We’ve actually seen a change of favorites in this game as the Falcons were -1.5 on the advance line last week at the Westgate SuperBook and -1 when it reopened its Week 13 lines on Sunday afternoon. However, after the Steelers beat the Colts 24-17 on Monday Night Football, this has flipped to the Steelers -1, and I’ll gladly take the Falcons as a home dog (albeit the smallest one you can be).
Steelers (4-7) Head Coach Mike Tomlin is trying to avoid his first losing season while the Falcons (5-7) have overachieved all season as they only trail the Buccaneers by half a game in the NFC South and are 7-5 ATS. The Steelers are No. 27 in yards per game while the Falcons are No. 28. But the Falcons have been far more efficient averaging 22.7 points per game compared to just 17.6 for the Steelers with RB/WR Cordarrelle Patterson a threat to break off a huge run at any time (5.2 yards per carry) and with Marcus Mariota spreading the ball around to his receivers (or running himself).
Pick: Falcons +1
Adam Burke: Kenny Pickett is going through some growing pains in his first season as an NFL quarterback, but the task is a lot easier when the running game is putting up numbers. The Steelers have rushed for at least 100 yards in each of the last three games, including 172 yards against the Colts on Monday night. Pittsburgh is up to sixth in Rush EPA and should be able to keep that momentum going against a porous Falcons defense.
Najee Harris is questionable, but he avoided a major injury last week. Even if he can’t go, Benny Snell had 62 yards on 12 carries in relief last week, and Jaylen Warren has rushed for five yards per carry on his 38 attempts. Pickett has also contributed a bit with 35 rushes for 195 yards. There are options for the Steelers, and Pickett should also find more success through the air against a Falcons defense that ranks 28th in Dropback EPA against and 29th in Dropback Success Rate.
Pittsburgh’s advanced rush defense metrics look decent, but this is a team that has allowed at least 110 yards on the ground in seven of 11 games. They also haven’t faced many potent rushing attacks, but the Falcons have been very solid and rank fifth in Rush EPA. The Browns rank third in Rush EPA and ran for 171 yards against Pittsburgh back in Week 3.
Quietly, the Falcons' pass attack has graded around league average for the season. With the game indoors away from the bad weather across most of the country, there should be points in the forecast at the Georgia Dome. Not surprisingly, Atlanta has managed 0.38 more yards per play at home and has only allowed seven sacks in six games.
Pick: OVER 42
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Dave Tuley: The Eagles continue to roll along with the NFL’s best record at 10-1, but after starting 3-1 ATS, they’ve been middle of the road at 3-3 ATS their last six games–and that includes a cover by half a point after closing as 6.5-point home favorites in a 40-33 win versus the Packers on Sunday night.
They’ve failed to cover in wins over the Lions, Cardinals, Texans, and Colts in addition to their upset loss to the Commanders in Week 10, so I have no problem fading them against the Titans, who continue to get disrespected in the betting market despite overcoming an 0-2 start to stand at 7-4 SU and an even more impressive 8-3 ATS. And that includes losing 20-16 to the Bengals this past Sunday.
Derrick Henry continues to set the tone as he’s second in the NFL with 1,048 rushing yards to make things easier for Ryan Tannehill’s play-action passes. I also trust Tennessee Head Coach Mike Vrabel to have a scheme to contain Philly QB Jalen Hurts and keep the Titans in a one-score game if not pull the outright upset.
Pick: Titans +5
Wes Reynolds: The way to beat the Philadelphia Eagles, although only one team (Washington Commanders) has done it, is to run the ball and stop the run. The Commanders only averaged 3.1 yards per carry, a little less than three weeks ago, but they also ran it 49 times and controlled the time of possession for 40:24. Defensively, they held the Eagles to only 94 yards on 20 carries.
Enter the Tennessee Titans. The Titans are the No. 1 DVOA Rush Defense, and they also have a guy named Derrick Henry who is eager to get back on track after just 38 yards on the ground, although he did catch a 69-yard screen pass as well. Tennessee center Ben Jones is also likely to return this week, and that is good news for a rushing attack facing the 24th Rush Defense DVOA.
The Eagles still have the best record in the league at 10-1, but the margins are starting to become thinner. In the 8-0 start, the Eagles won by an average of 11.25 per game. Removing their defeat to Washington, Philadelphia has only won its last two games by an average of four points per game. Philadelphia still leads the NFL in turnover margin (+13), and that is due for some regression.
Titans Head Coach Mike Vrabel is also in what is his best spread role. He is 21-7 ATS as an underdog of three points or more for his head coaching career in Tennessee.
Pick: Titans +5
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Danny Burke: Somehow, despite clear signs of giving up several weeks ago, the Lions have managed to be competitive over their past four games. They’ve won their last three and were set up in a prime position to overcome the Bills on Thanksgiving, but eventually fell short. However, we now have an expanded sample size of positives to take away from this group.
During those past four games, on the offensive side of the ball, Detroit averaged 25.5 points per game. Furthermore, this Lions team ranks 5th in yards per play (5.8) and 2nd in red zone efficiency as they are scoring a touchdown when they enter that territory 71.4% of the time (2nd). I get that Jacksonville is a popular pick because, well, fading Detroit is typically an easy decision to make, and Trevor Lawrence led a remarkable comeback last week, but Doug Pederson’s group has its flaws. In their last three games, the Jags have been surrendering 6.5 yards per play and 13.2 yards per completion—both rank second worst in the league. Just because they overcame the Ravens in dramatic fashion, doesn’t mean my thoughts have altered on Lawrence and his team. They haven’t proven anything, whereas we’ve had more of a consistent sample size with Dan Campbell’s team.
Pick: Lions ML (-105)
Adam Burke: This one was a winner for me against the Bills last week in our BetsGiving contest, and I’ll go right back to the well again. Jared Goff will be playing indoors at Ford Field, and his cold-weather splits are well-documented. At home this season, the Lions have 15 passing touchdowns. On the road, they have two. Detroit has played one more game at home than on the road, but this is the second-ranked red-zone offense by touchdown percentage, and Goff has had at least two passing touchdowns in five of the six home games. In the game, he didn’t. He threw for 321 yards, so the chances were there.
Jacksonville has a below-average pass defense by EPA and Success Rate while having a really strong run defense, so the Lions should look to the pass as their best means of scoring and creating some explosive plays.
Pick: Jared Goff OVER 1.5 Passing TDs (+100)
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Brady Kannon: After starting 1-4, the Commanders have won six of their last seven games to reach 7-5 on the season. It has been trending in the other direction for the Giants, who got out to a 6-1 start but have since gone 1-3. In the Giants’ favor, they do come into this game on extra rest, having played on Thanksgiving Day. Washington was pretty lucky on Sunday to not only escape with a win ATS but to win the game, period. I liked the Falcons last week catching four points, as I felt the stock on the Commanders was starting to get a little high. It is possibly even higher now. Meanwhile, the Giants’ stock continues to drop after they were beaten soundly by the Cowboys last Thursday.
This translates into what looks like a buy-low spot on New York and possibly a sell-high position with Washington. They are now 4-0 ATS as a favorite and 6-0-1 ATS in their last seven games. The Giants are 6-1 ATS this season as an underdog. It looks like Evan Neal will be back for the Giants on the offensive line as well as tight end Daniel Bellinger.
Washington opened as a 1.5-point favorite, and that is now up to 2.5. It looks like perfect teaser material to take the Giants up to an +8.5-point home underdog. The Giants have played in very close games for most of the season, but their last four have been decided by margins of 14, 8, 13, and 8. Over its last eight games, Washington finals have been decided by 5.6 points on average. I don't think either of these teams has real firepower to blow one another out. So again, teasing the Giants up does appear to have a good chance of cashing.
The extra rest is a big advantage for New York, and quarterback Daniel Jones is at his best against Washington, going 4-1 SU and 5-0 ATS with a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 9-3. This will be the first of three straight division games for the Giants. They will travel to Washington to face this same Commanders team in two weeks. I think they know that they have to bounce back this week, stiffen up the defense, and get a win if they want to remain in the playoff picture. I would not be surprised if they won this game outright, but I’ll play it safe with a teaser.
Pick: Giants teased up to +8.5
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Adam Burke: Nobody knows exactly how Deshaun Watson will look in his NFL return, but we have a pretty good idea of how the Texans will look. The Browns may not hit 7.5 to be more than a touchdown favorite on the road for the first time since 1995, but this is still pretty rare air for a Cleveland team that could barely win games not that long ago. Even if Watson looks merely pedestrian here, they are far and away the better team.
This is actually a top-10 offense by EPA/play and a top-five offense in Rush EPA and Rush Success Rate. The Texans are the worst offense in the NFL by EPA/play and are not a passing threat at all, allowing a suspect Cleveland defense to flood the box to stop Dameon Pierce and the running game.
Houston pairs that atrocious offense with a below-average defense against both the pass and the run. A couple of turnovers would help Cleveland’s cause here, as the Browns have only forced eight takeaways this season, but they should still be able to wear Houston down enough to come away with a win and cover, despite the big spread.
Pick: Browns -7
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET
Danny Burke: Justin Fields was finally back to being a full participant in practice this week, but does it matter? In terms of the Bears’ chances of winning, absolutely, but he can only do so much on his own. Not only did he lose his favorite target, Darnell Mooney, for the season, but his already brutal defense just got worse. According to DVOA, Chicago came into this week as the 31st-ranked defense. Matt Eberflus’ bunch ranks 29th in both yards per play allowed (5.9) and yards per completion allowed (11.3).
To make matters worse, they may be without rookies Jaquan Brisker and Kyler Gordon, once again, as they are still in the concussion protocol this week. Plus, safety Eddie Jackson is now out for the year. It doesn’t matter what the Packers have or haven’t done leading up to this game; Rodgers owns the Bears. He said it himself, and the proof is in the pudding. Rodgers has a career record of 24-5 against Chicago and already defeated that group 27-10 earlier this season. Now he gets to face an injury-riddled team.
Motivation will already be heightened because it’s the Bears, but also because the rumblings about Jordan Love began to pop up after he looked competent on a few drives this past Sunday. Expect Rodgers and the Packers to do the same thing they always do—beat the Bears.
Pick: Packers -3 (-120)
Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ET
Adam Burke: There are two reasons why I like Kenneth Walker III OVER his rushing yards. The first is that Aaron Donald is out for the Rams, and he is a mountain of a man that takes up a ton of space on that defensive line. His absence should help open up the middle of the field for the Seahawks to run the ball. The second is because of the likely game state that we’ll see here.
The Seahawks are a touchdown favorite. It remains to be seen if they’ll face John Wolford or Bryce Perkins, but they’re going to get an inefficient quarterback on the other side regardless. This is the type of game where Seattle can build up a lead and run the football to keep that clock moving. Also, there must be some serious questions about the Rams and their effort level moving forward, especially from a physicality standpoint in the trenches. Taking Donald out of the mix heightens my concerns on that front, so I’m looking for Walker to have a nice game.
Pick: Kenneth Walker III OVER 70.5 Rushing Yards (-115)
Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ET
Brady Kannon: I wholeheartedly expected the 49ers to stub their toe last week at home against the Saints after such a difficult week of traveling—going to Colorado Springs to practice, and then playing in Mexico City, both of which are at very high elevations. This, combined with everyone being ready to crown them the NFC champs. Their stock was at an all-time season high, and they were due for a slip. And slip they did. It was remarkable that a team getting 9.5 points, the Saints, could not cover that number when they held their opponent to just 13.
Off of what I thought was a pretty obvious spot to have a hiccup, San Francisco is poised to regain its footing and get back on track.
Defensive tackle Arik Armstead confirmed on Thursday that he would be back for San Francisco, which is really big. With Armstead, Samson Ebukam, and Charles Omenihu all back along the interior of the D-line, it really frees up Nick Bosa to rush the passer. We saw this play out early in the season before Armstead got hurt, and the 49ers were leading the league in quarterback sacks. They haven’t slipped too far, now at 8th, but again, Armstead’s return will undoubtedly bolster this pass rush significantly.
On offense, we know Jimmy Garoppolo’s specialty is not the deep ball but rather the short slants, mid-range crosses, and wide receiver screens. The Niners rank number one in DVOA for passes of less than 15 yards down the field. The Miami defense ranks 29th in defending such passes.
My three sets of numbers come up 49ers -5, 49ers -5, and 49ers -11. I have already bet them at -3, and now we are at -4 across the board. It’s possible we will see this go to 4.5 before kickoff. The difference here is on defense. San Francisco has the best unit in the league and should be able to slow the Dolphins’ attack—at least somewhat. Miami's defense is poor, however, and will likely struggle to cover the plethora of 49ers' weapons on the ground and through the air. It makes sense that the 49ers get it in gear once again after last week's ho-hum performance on offense and win this one over the Dolphins by six to eight points.
Pick: 49ers -4 or better
Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET
Adam Burke: Corey Linsley didn’t practice on Wednesday, which means the Raiders become a much more attractive bet. Linsley grades as one of the two best centers in the NFL and might be the most important offensive lineman in the league. The Chargers weren’t going to be able to run the ball against the Raiders regardless, as Las Vegas ranks fourth in Rush EPA on defense, but now the Chargers are likely to have pass protection problems as well.
Los Angeles has been ravaged by injuries all season. Linsley is joined by RT Trey Pipkins among the offensive line injuries, but the Chargers are also missing WR Mike Williams, S Derwin James, and CB Bryce Callahan, among others. Between the injuries and a lack of execution, the Chargers have been outgained by 0.8 yards per play this season and have been outscored by 30 points. Despite all that, they are 6-5.
Compare that to the Raiders, who have averaged 5.9 yards per play on offense and allowed 5.9 yards per play on defense. They have been outscored by 11 points. They are 4-7, despite being sixth in points scored per drive. The Raiders take better care of the football than any other team with just nine turnovers. Of course, they’ve only forced eight, which is why their mediocre defense has given up a lot of points.
But a strong case can be made that the Raiders are the superior team statistically. Add in the likely absence of Linsley, and the wrong team is favored here in my estimation.
Pick: Raiders +1.5
Adam Burke: There’s a prop I like in this game as well. Many will just assume that Justin Herbert has a big day against the Raiders, but that may not be the case. Offensive line injuries are a huge deal this week for the Chargers, as they are likely to be without Linsley and Pipkins. As mentioned, Linsley is a top-two center and Pipkins has started 10 games this season. Herbert is also thin at wide receiver right now with Mike Williams out of the lineup.
Keenan Allen is back, but Herbert has still been under six yards per pass attempt in five of the last six games. He had 35 completions on 47 attempts last week against the Cardinals and still wound up going UNDER this total. He’s gone under this total in each of the last four games and six of his last seven. This is a gamble with the Raiders’ pass defense, but Herbert is likely to be under duress most of the game, and he has not been putting up prolific numbers all season long.
Pick: Justin Herbert UNDER 289.5 Passing Yards (-115)
Kansas City Chiefs (-1.5, 53) at Cincinnati Bengals
Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET
Wes Reynolds: The Kansas City Chiefs have had this game circled for ten months since losing at home in the AFC Championship Game to the Cincinnati Bengals. The Chiefs also lost at Cincinnati in Week 17, as Joe Burrow connected with Ja’Maar Chase for a 30-yard completion on a 3rd and 27 with three minutes left to set the Bengals up for the win. (Chase will likely return for this game from a hip injury that has kept him out since Week 8.) If you recall, the Bengals actually went for it on 4th and 1 at the KC 1 with just under a minute left to score a touchdown and were actually stopped but got a reprieve due to the Chiefs getting an illegal use of hands penalty.
Now the Chiefs get their chance at double revenge as Patrick Mahomes leads them into Cincinnati in what has historically been a good spread spot. Mahomes is 17-5 ATS as an underdog or a favorite of three points or less. He has also won 26 straight games in November/December dating back to November 10, 2018. (The loss at Cincinnati last season was in January.)
Kansas City had second-half double-digit leads in both losses to the Bengals last season. It is a fairly easy guess to determine which word has been used most in Chiefs practice this week —- FINISH!
The Chiefs likely had some extra preparation time before last week’s game against the Rams to devote towards this week, whereas Cincinnati put everything into a hard-fought win at Tennessee last week.
Pick: Chiefs -125 ML
Sunday, 8:20 p.m. ET
Dave Tuley: This line has gotten way out of control (opening Cowboys -9.5 on Sunday afternoon prior to the Colts’ 24-17 Monday Night Football loss to the Steelers), but we’ll gladly take the Colts as a double-digit underdog. NFL double-digit dogs are 11-6 ATS (64.7%) so far this season—and that’s with the Texans +14 and Rams +15.5 both coming up short this past Sunday. The Colts haven’t been a double-digit dog until now, but the Cowboys just failed after closing as a 10-point favorite in their 28-20 win vs. the Giants on Thanksgiving.
The Colts are playing much better since Jeff Saturday replaced Frank Reich, beating the Raiders and covering as 6.5-point dogs in a 17-16 loss to the Eagles before the MNF loss. If the Giants could stay within single digits of the Cowboys, so can the Colts.
Pick: Colts +11