Sunday

DALLAS COWBOYS (-7.5) over Green Bay Packers; Over 50.5

In this case, perfect conditions figure to benefit the favorite. The Cowboys are 8-0 at home, winning by an average of 21.5 points per game. The Packers were 2-5 on the road after their loss at the Giants on Dec. 11 before adding victories at 2-15 Carolina and QB-less Minnesota.

The Packers are coming in kind of hot, on a three-game winning streak. They had scored at least 17 points in 10 straight games, and I believe Jordan Love will have some success against the Dallas defense, which is why I’m taking the Over.

But this should be a boat race for Dak Prescott, CeeDee Lamb and the Cowboys offense. 

Score prediction: Cowboys, 38-20. 


Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys warms up prior to an NFL football game against the Washington Commanders.
Dak Prescott warms up before the Cowboys’ 38-10 win over the Commanders. Getty Images

Los Angeles Rams (+3) over DETROIT LIONS; Under 51.5

Here we go with the Matthew Stafford-Jared Goff Bowl. Both went to the Super Bowl with the Rams, Stafford winning his. Both have been part of the Lions’ journey, which has been forever futile possibly until now.

The Rams come in insanely hot. They’ve won seven of their past eight games, with the loss coming in overtime at Baltimore, and averaged 31.3 ppg in Stafford’s past six games. LA’s injury situation has come together, and now RB Kyren Williams and WRs Cooper Kupp and Puka Nacua are all healthy.

The Lions have been on a good run as well, winning three of their past four with the loss coming at Dallas in disputed circumstances. The difference here could be the status of Lions TE Sam LaPorta, who injured his knee in the meaningless Week 18 game.

It’s a risk, but I’m taking the Under, hoping a few long drives will end in field goals or missed fourth downs. This is a huge number for this season.

Score prediction: Rams, 27-23. 

Monday

Pittsburgh Steelers (+10) over BUFFALO BILLS; Under 36

Again, Mother Nature will be the MVP of an NFL playoff game. The forecast for Orchard Park calls for between 1 and 2 feet of snow between Saturday morning and Monday overnight. Six to 10 inches are expected Sunday. Fortunately these are two cold-weather teams that will never complain about the weather.

Heavy snow doesn’t always equate to a low-scoring game, but high winds usually do. So I think this game for both sides will be about field position and trying to get the one touchdown that will be hard to overcome.

And though it’s never good for the Steelers to be missing T.J. Watt, this might be a week they can get by since Josh Allen won’t likely be throwing much from the pocket.

Score prediction: Bills, 17-10. 

Philadelphia Eagles (-3) over TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS; Under 43.5

Unlike some of the previous games where you could see yourself betting on either team, in this one I’m thinking I want to back neither team.

The Bucs come in having won five of six games and have a clean health sheet on their starting depth chart. Yet, two weeks ago they were terrible in a loss to the Saints and were able to beat the two-win Panthers only 9-0 to win the NFC South.


Betting on the NFL?


The Eagles have lost five of six and have “Qs” next to all of their top skill players from QB Jalen Hurts to RB D’Andre Swift to WRs A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith. It seems like a million years ago they went into Tampa and won, 25-11, in Week 3. Somehow, Nick Sirianni has gone from one flag away from winning the Super Bowl to a 10-1 start to the hot seat.

Maybe this is what the Eagles are now — a team that was losing 24-0 to the Giants before Hurts went out with a finger injury. I’m thinking (hoping) they rediscover what they used to be, if only for one day.

Score prediction: Eagles, 20-7
Last week: 12-4 overall, 3-0 Best Bets
Lock of the week: Browns (Locks 5-12-1 in 2023 regular season).

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