NFL Week 13 Betting Lines
Week 13 begins with a high-profile marquee matchup of the New Orleans Saints hosting the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday night. Both teams are expected to be pressing for playoff spots by this time of the 2021 NFL season. But will they? Dallas has the advantage of playing in the putrid NFC East. If Dak Prescott stays healthy, and the defense is merely average, the Cowboys are nearly certain to win the division. But those are no guarantees. Meanwhile, the Saints are a perennial playoff team under head coach Sean Payton. But that was with quarterback Drew Brees, who is now retired. New Orleans playoff hopes now ride on the arm of Jameis Winston. Is a gambler really going to step out on that? Regardless, there should be plenty of pressure for this one.
BYE WEEK: Carolina, Cleveland, Green Bay, Tennessee
Sunday afternoon will have the Atlanta Falcons hosting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Some bargain hunters see Atlanta as a sleeper team. By the time this game is played, we'll know if that's the case. There is little doubt that the Falcons will bring plenty of offense to the gridiron. But can new head coach Arthur Smith oversee the necessary defensive improvement?
Kyler Murray of the Arizona Cardinals is one of the most exciting young quarterbacks in the game. Murray has been a key reason for the Cardinals' resurgence as an NFC West contender. In like manner, the Chicago Bears are gambling that Justin Fields will fill that same role for them. The big question for this one is whether or not Fields will be under center or if it will instead be Mitchell Trubisky.
The Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs will meet in Arrowhead. These old AFL teams have shared the same division since 1960. Will the stout Broncos defense be able to slow down Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs? And even if they can, will the popgun Denver offense be able to capitalize?
One of the great rivalries in the modern era of pro football will be renewed when the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Baltimore Ravens. First place in the AFC North may well be on the line, and there will certainly be playoff implications. Najee Harris may be the best pick of the entire 2021 NFL Draft. Harris gives the Steelers instant credibility in the backfield and will keep enemy defenses honest.
NBC Sunday Night Football offers a traditionally heated rivalry from the NFC West with the San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks. Russell Wilson returns under center for the Seahawks after rumblings that he may have wanted out. Wilson is the one man Seattle can't afford to lose. But will Pete Carroll have an improved supporting cast? And will the Seahawks defense continue its improvement from 2020? The big question for the 49ers is if they will be healthy at this point of the campaign? If so, San Francisco is a Super Bowl team.
Monday Night Football brings an old school AFL showdown between the Buffalo Bills and visiting New England Patriots. These two teams have shared the same division since the founding of the American Football League in 1960. Last year the Patriots' ownership of the AFC East was ripped away by the Bills, who are favored to repeat in 2021. By this time, we'll know who Bill Belichick's quarterback is and if it is working out.
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