NFL Opening Line Analysis: Week 13

These lines stood out from the pack for various reasons

Keith Allison, Flickr

Eagles (5-6) at Dolphins (2-9)

PHI -7.5, O/U 46, Sunday December 1st, 1:00pm EST

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The Eagles find themselves on the outside looking in of the NFC playoff picture at the moment and are fully in must-win mode if they hope to keep their postseason aspirations alive. Fortunately, they’re in a dream Week 13 matchup against the Dolphins and opened as 7.5-point road favorites. After two shocking victories, Miami’s defense reverted back to their early-season mode and they’ve allowed 37 points to the Bills and then 41 to the Browns in back-to-back weeks. Assuming that Carson Wentz and company regain their composure and take things one week at a time, it’s hard to imagine the Eagles not pulling off the victory while putting up a boatload of points in the process.

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Redskins (2-9) at Panthers (5-6)

CAR -10, O/U 40.5, Sunday December 1st, 1:00pm EST 

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The Panthers opened as one of two double-digit favorites on the Week 13 slate despite the fact that they’ve dropped four of their last five games (straight-up) and have looked completely outmatched in those losses. It doesn’t help that Dwayne Haskins picked up the first win of his career in a 19-16 Redskins victory over the Lions in Week 12. Although Carolina’s offense, particularly Christian McCaffrey, poses a threat every week, Washington’s defense has stepped up against elite teams so far this season (allowing just nine points to the 49ers on October 20th and then just 19 to the Vikings on October 24th). Based on how Carolina has performed lately and the potential momentum created by Washington’s victory, it seems logical to assume that this line will tighten up significantly before kickoff on Sunday.

Raiders (6-5) at Chiefs (7-4)

KC -10, O/U 54.5, Sunday December 1st, 4:25pm EST

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The last time these two teams played was back in Week 2. The Chiefs won that game 28-10 and did all their scoring in the second quarter while Patrick Mahomes went 30-for-44 for 443 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. Kansas City’s defense also shut out the Raiders in the final three quarters of that game. Although things have changed since (most notably Mahomes’ injury and some general success for the Raiders), it’s clear that these teams are headed in different directions, as Derek Carr was benched late in Oakland’s 34-3 Week 12 loss to the Jets. 

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Patriots (10-1) at Texans (7-4)

NE -3, O/U 44.5, Sunday December 1st, 8:20pm EST

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It’s important to know that each of the last four Texans games have finished under the total, while four of the last five Patriots games have. That makes this 44.5-point total seem a bit generous, especially since both offenses have uncharacteristically struggled to live up to their potential over the last two weeks. Houston sputtered just seven points in Week 11, followed by a 20-point showing in Week 12. Meanwhile, New England’s offense managed just 17 and 13 points in those two weeks, respectively. Something to think about before betting on the Texans (ATS and SU) would be who, other than DeAndre Hopkins (who Bill Belichick will likely shadow with Stephon Gilmore and give extra attention to) can or will step up in Houston’s passing game. If you’re skeptical about that answer, you probably shouldn’t be enamored with the three-point home underdog. 

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