Week 17 of the NFL season is finally here, and there are a number of key games on the schedule. Only a handful of playoff spots have been secured, meaning there will be some win-or-go-home games set to take place.
There are also some games that will be virtually meaningless, at least for one team in the game. That could cause some of these lines to look a bit strange and could lead to some interesting results.
NFC North rivals will meet up in Chicago in a game that has significance for each team. The 12-3 Green Bay Packers are looking for the top seed in the NFC, while the Chicago Bears are hoping for a Wild Card spot.
Green Bay has now rattled off five wins in a row, including a 40-14 win over the Tennessee Titans in Week 16. The Packers lead the NFL in scoring, and Aaron Rodgers might be the MVP of the NFL this season.
Chicago has now won three games in a row to get back into playoff contention in the NFC. The offense has started to come alive for Chicago, and the defense has remained a dominant unit.
Playing this game in Chicago will give the Bears a slight edge, but it won't be enough to affect the outcome. Take the Green Bay Packers -4.0 as they earn the top overall seed in the NFC.
The 12-3 Buffalo Bills will host the 10-5 Miami Dolphins on Sunday in what could be a potential playoff preview. Buffalo has already won the AFC East, while the Dolphins can clinch a playoff berth with a win.
Miami has an issue at the quarterback position as neither Ryan Fitzpatrick or Tua Tagovailoa have been able to take control of the job. The Dolphins do have a dominant defense that is allowing just 18.8 points per game.
Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills are scoring points like crazy, including 38 points in Week 16. The Bills are scoring close to 30 points per game, and this team continues to build momentum heading into the postseason.
The Dolphins have had a great year, but they don't have the offense to win this game. Take the Buffalo Bills -2.5 over the Miami Dolphins in the season finale.
The Cincinnati Bengals are set to host the Baltimore Ravens in an AFC North rivalry game in Week 17. Baltimore is looking to punch its ticket to the playoffs, while Cincinnati is looking to play the role of spoiler.
This has been a strange season for the Ravens, but they are back in the playoff hunt. Baltimore is one of the best rushing teams in the NFL, and quarterback Lamar Jackson has turned it on of late.
Cincinnati has found some offense recently, despite being without quarterback Joe Burrow. The Bengals have struggled on defense this season, and that might be an issue in this one.
The Ravens need this win, and they will take control early. Bet the Baltimore Ravens -11.5 over the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 17.
The Pittsburgh Steelers and Cleveland Browns will meet up in an AFC rivalry game on Sunday. Pittsburgh has already won the AFC North while the Cleveland Browns are looking to secure a playoff bid.
Pittsburgh has struggled to run the ball all season, and that will be a focus in this game. The defense has remained dominant all season, allowing less than 19 points per game.
Cleveland was without a number of key receivers in Week 16 due to COVID-19, but they are expected to be back. The offense was a mess against the New York Jets, but the Browns have the weapons to win this game.
This game matters for the Browns, and they will find a way to get it done. Bet on the Cleveland Browns -7.0 over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday in Week 17.
The 5-10 Detroit Lions will host the 6-9 Minnesota Vikings on Sunday in a battle of NFC North rivals. Both teams have had disappointing 2020 seasons, and there isn't anything to play for on Sunday besides pride.
Minnesota running back Dalvin Cook has run for 1,557 yards this season, and he is one of the best players in the league. The Vikings have struggled on defense in 2020, but that shouldn't be a huge problem in this matchup.
The Lions are playing with an injured Matthew Stafford at quarterback, and that really hurts their chances. Detroit needs to throw the ball a ton to win games, and the injury to Stafford will put too much pressure on the defense.
It's been a rough year for the Vikings, but they will win this game by double-digits.
The 1-14 Jacksonville Jaguars head to Indianapolis to take on the 10-5 Colts in an AFC South matchup. Jacksonville will be looking to play the role of spoiler, while Indianapolis is looking to qualify for the AFC Playoffs.
Jacksonville has already earned the No. 1 overall draft pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, and it's unclear how the Jaguars will respond in this game. The Jaguars are dealing with a number of injuries, and the offense has been a real mess of late.
Running back Jonathan Taylor is having a big season for the Colts, but quarterback Philip Rivers continues to make some costly mistakes. Indianapolis has one of the best defenses in the league, and that unit will need to take control on Sunday.
Jacksonville has given up on the season, and it won't be competitive in this one. Bet the Indianapolis Colts -13.5 over the Jacksonville Jaguars in this matchup.
If you are looking for one of the strangest betting lines of the weekend, look no further than this game. The 14-1 Kansas City Chiefs are slight underdogs at home against the 6-9 Los Angeles Chargers.
Chargers rookie quarterback Justin Herbert has thrown for over 4,000 yards this season, and he is the future face of this franchise. Los Angeles does have some questions on defense, but this offense can put up points in a hurry.
The Chiefs are expected to rest a number of starters in this game now that they have the top seed in the AFC already locked up. Kansas City has been an explosive offensive team all season long, but that defense continues to be underrated.
Resting starters will obviously be a huge blow to the Chiefs, but this team is also extremely deep. Take the 3.5 points and bet on the Chiefs to at least keep this game close at home.
Longtime AFC East rivals will meet up on Sunday as the 6-9 New England Patriots host the 2-13 New York Jets. New York will be looking to win their third straight game while the Patriots try to end a rough season on a high note.
The Jets will be without running back Frank Gore on Sunday, and that's a huge blow to the offense. Quarterback Sam Darnold has played better of late, but he has struggled against the Patriots in his career.
The Patriots just continue to struggle to throw the ball, but quarterback Cam Newton continues to run the ball well. The defense was torched by Josh Allen and the Bills in Week 16, and that unit needs to bounce back on Sunday.
New York has plenty of momentum heading into this matchup, but the Patriots have owned them of late. Take the New England Patriots -5.5 over the New York Jets.
The NFC East is still wide open, and the eventual champion could come from the winner of this game. Both the Cowboys and Giants can win the division with a Week 17 win and a loss by the Washington Football Team.
Dallas has now won three straight games, and the Cowboys are finding plenty of offense. Running back Ezekiel Elliott leads the way with 937 rushing yards, and quarterback Andy Dalton has found his rhythm of late.
New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones is trying to play through an injury, but he just can't move around back there. The Giants are just 2-5 at home so far this season, and that defense will need to carry the load for New York.
The Cowboys are suddenly red-hot, and they will carry that momentum into this game. Take the Cowboys -2.5 to win this game and keep their playoff hopes alive.
NFC South rivals will meet up in Tampa Bay on Sunday as the Buccaneers host the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons are just 4-11 on the season, while the Buccaneers are 10-5.
Quarterback Matt Ryan continues to put up huge numbers for the Falcons, and Calvin Ridley has emerged as his new favorite target. The problem for Atlanta continues to be the defense, although that unit did shut down the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 16.
Tom Brady and the Buccaneers have struggled to find a rhythm this season, but the offense is loaded with weapons. The defense continues to be overlooked in Tampa Bay, but that unit can take over a game at any time.
The Buccaneers want some momentum heading into the playoffs, and they will be focused in this game. Bet the Tampa Bay Buccaneers -6.0 over the Atlanta Falcons.
The NFC South has produced a number of blowout games already this season, and that could continue in the season finale. The 11-4 New Orleans Saints will take on the 5-10 Carolina Panthers, and there will be plenty of storylines surrounding this game.
New Orleans is looking to improve its playoff seeding, but there isn't a ton of other motivation for the Saints. Running back Alvin Kamara rushed for six touchdowns in a Week 16 win over the Vikings, and he will have the ball a ton in this game.
Carolina quarterback Teddy Bridgewater will be taking on a Saints team that he used to play for. The Panthers have an explosive passing attack, but this team has also been giving up points in bunches this season.
The Panthers just don't get enough stops on defense, and the Saints can really score. Bet on the New Orleans Saints -4.5 over the Carolina Panthers.
The 4-11 Houston Texans are set to host the 10-5 Tennessee Titans on Sunday in a game with playoff implications. Tennessee can win the AFC South with a victory, but Houston will be looking to play the role of spoiler.
Titans running back Derrick Henry leads the NFL with 1,777 yards, and he has also scored 15 touchdowns. Tennessee will need quarterback Ryan Tannehill to play much better than he did in the Week 16 blowout loss to the Green Bay Packers.
The Texans continue to get great play from quarterback Deshaun Watson, but he hasn't gotten a ton of help. Houston has also struggled on the defensive side of the ball, and that will be an issue in this game.
The Titans need to win this game, and they will not mess around. Bet the Tennessee Titans -7.0 over the Houston Texans in this AFC South showdown.
The 5-10 Denver Broncos will host the 7-8 Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday, and the home team will be looking for revenge. The Raiders beat the Broncos by a score of 37-12 earlier this season, but things have fallen apart for Las Vegas since that game.
Head coach Jon Gruden cost his team a chance to win in Week 16 as he made a number of questionable coaching decisions. Running back Josh Jacobs has rushed for 10 touchdowns this season, and he should see plenty of carries for the Raiders.
Denver just can't seem to find a solution at the quarterback position, but Drew Lock has played better football of late. The Broncos are scoring just 19.5 points per game, and they will need to find some offense in this game.
The Raiders have been trending in the wrong direction, and they won't be motivated in this one. Take the Denver Broncos -1.5 over the Las Vegas Raiders.
NFC West rivals collide in Los Angeles in what is a must-win game for each team. Both the Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals need a win to secure a playoff berth in the NFC.
Arizona blew a huge chance to take control of its own destiny in a Week 16 loss to San Francisco. The Cardinals have an explosive offense, but quarterback Kyler Murray is banged up, and his status for this game is unclear.
Los Angeles will be without quarterback Jared Goff after he suffered a broken thumb in Week 16. Aaron Donald and the defense will have to play well, and that unit is capable of taking control.
This game will likely be a low-scoring affair, and it should be tight throughout. Bet on the Los Angeles Rams -1.5 to come away with this win over the Arizona Cardinals.
The 6-9 San Francisco 49ers will host the 11-4 Seattle Seahawks on Sunday in another key NFC West battle. The Seahawks are playing for the top seed in the NFC, while the 49ers are looking to play the role of spoiler.
Seattle is led by quarterback Russell Wilson and his 38 touchdowns this season. The Seahawks have struggled on defense at times, but that unit has really turned it on of late.
San Francisco upset the Arizona Cardinals in Week 16, and there is simply no quit with this team. The Niners are giving up just 21.0 points per game, and that defense will need to show up on Sunday.
San Francisco will make things difficult on Seattle, but the Seahawks simply have too much offense. Look for Wilson and company to take control late as the Seahawks cover the 4.5-point spread.
The 2020 NFL regular season will conclude with an NFC East matchup on Sunday Night Football. The 6-9 Washington Football Team will take on the 4-10-1 Philadelphia Eagles, and the NFC East title is on the line.
Washington can win the NFC East with a win, but the Washington Football Team will have to do it with a backup quarterback. Dwayne Haskins was released from the team on Monday, and Washington will be hoping that its dominant defensive line can win this game.
Philadelphia will have Jalen Hurts back under center for the season finale. Hurts provided a spark to the offense when he took over the job, but the Eagles still have many flaws on this roster.
The quarterback controversy is a big problem for Washington, but that defense is too good to ignore. Bet the Washington Football Team to beat the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night and win the NFC East.
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