Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:00 AM

Total Talk - Week 16

Week 15 Recap

Scoreboard operators weren’t that busy in Week 15 and that lack of production helped the ‘under’ go 9-6-1. The 16-game slate saw not one but two shutouts posted and both of the totals that closed in the thirties easily fell below their numbers. Through 15 weeks, the ‘under’ owns a 117-106-1 mark.

2018 Total Results - Game & Halves
O/U Game 1st Half 2nd Half
Week 15 6-9-1 6-10 6-9-1
O/U Game 1st Half 2nd Half
Year-to-Date 106-117-1 110-114 97-121-6

2018 Results - Other
O/U AFC-NFC Divisional Indoor Coast to Coast
Week 15 1-5 2-2 1-1 1-0-1
O/U AFC-NFC Divisional Indoor Coast to Coast
Year-to-Date 28-26 34-39 19-23 11-6-1

Line Moves and Public Leans

Listed below are the largest line moves for Week 16 as of Saturday morning per [...].

L.A. Rams at Arizona: 47 ½ to 44
Tampa Bay at Dallas: 46 to 48
Cincinnati at Cleveland: 46 to 44
Denver at Oakland: 45 to 43
Buffalo at New England: 45 ½ to 44

Listed below are the five largest leans for Week 16 per the betting trend percentages on the VI Matchup index as of Saturday morning.

L.A. Rams at Arizona: Under 93%
Cincinnati at Cleveland: Under 85%
Buffalo at New England: Over 80%
Chicago at San Francisco: Over 80%
Minnesota at Detroit: Under 77%

Bragging Rights

This will be the last week of non-conference action until the NFC and AFC square off in Super Bowl 53 next February. The ‘over’ has gone 28-26 on the season in these matchups but the ‘under’ went 5-1 last week. Tennessee and Washington will meet on Saturday afternoon before the final five games take place on Sunday.

N.Y. Giants at Indianapolis: The Colts enter this game on a 5-0 ‘under’ run and they’ve seen the ‘under’ go 3-0 versus their first three NFC East opponents this season. The Indianapolis defense is very underrated and that unit has only allowed 12.2 points per game during the current streak to the low side. Knowing that, I’m a little surprised the total (48) is this high and we just saw the Giants get shutout 17-0 at home last Sunday to the Titans. However, New York was averaging 31.4 PPG in its previous five games before the bagel.

Houston at Philadelphia: Playing the ‘under’ at Lincoln Financial Field has been golden again this season with the Eagles going 6-1 to the low side. Quarterback Nick Foles filled in nicely last week for the Birds at the Rams and you wonder if he can improve the offensive numbers (21.3 PPG) at home. If you’re leaning high in this matchup, then you need Houston to convert with sixes instead of threes. The Texans have 32 offensive touchdowns and 34 field goals this season.

Green Bay at N.Y. Jets: The Packers have seen the ‘under’ go 3-0 in their three games versus the AFC this season. New York enters this game on a 4-1 ‘over’ run and weak defensive numbers (29.2 PG) have contributed to that cause. QB Aaron Rodgers (groin) could be on a short leash due to injury and it’s tough to gauge what you’ll get from the Packers knowing they’ve been eliminated from the playoffs.

Pittsburgh at New Orleans: The Saints enter this game on a 5-0 ‘under’ run yet this total is still listed in the fifties (53). Pittsburgh hasn’t show much offensively (22.9 PPG) on the road but New Orleans is a juggernaut at home (38 PPG) and it hasn’t played at the Superdome since Thanksgiving. A lot of ‘cappers are buying Pittsburgh as an underdog and that’s understandable knowing that the Steelers have gone 4-0 in that role this season while averaging 24.5 PPG.

Kansas City at Seattle: (See Below)

Divisional Matchups

Buffalo at New England: The ‘under’ has cashed in four of the last six in this series, which includes New England’s 25-6 win at Buffalo in Week 8. The Bills have struggled scoring on the road (15.1 PPG) and that’s led to a 5-2 ‘under’ mark. New England has certainly been more potent offensively (33.5 PPG) at Foxboro but a strong defense (19.7 PPG) has produced a 4-2 ‘under’ mark at home. The Patriots enter this game on 6-1 ‘under’ run and after losing two straight games, most are expecting this to be a ‘get-right’ game on both sides of the ball.

Atlanta at Carolina: Tough total to handicap due to the injury to Carolina QB Cam Newton and nobody knows what to expect from rookie Taylor Heinicke. The Panthers enter this game on a six-game losing skid and they weren’t scoring with Cam, which helped the ‘under’ go 4-2. Will the kid turn them around? The ‘over’ (43 ½) cashed in the first meeting between the pair in Week 2 as Atlanta posted a 31-24 win at home. The Falcons are coming off a season-high 40-point effort last Sunday as they closed their home slate over the limited Cardinals. Unfortunately for Atlanta, the offense (20 PPG) hasn’t travelled well this season and the defense (27.2 PPG) remains shaky.

Minnesota at Detroit: This series has leaned heavily to the ‘under’ with eight of the last 10 going to the low side. Minnesota captured a 24-9 home win over Detroit in Week 9 and the total on that game was 47. For the rematch, we’re looking at 42 and you can argue it should be lower even though the Vikings exploded for 41 last Sunday at home versus Miami. The Lions offense has been decimated this season due to injuries and trades. The unit is averaging 15.8 PPG in their last eight games, which has led to a 7-1 ‘under’ mark. Minnesota hasn’t been as sharp defensively on the road (25 PPG) but seeing Detroit get in this neighborhood seems like a stretch.

Cincinnati at Cleveland: The script has flipped in this Ohio matchup with the Browns now listed as heavy favorites over the Bengals. Cleveland diced up Cincinnati 35-20 in Week 12 on the road and the ‘over’ (47) cashed. The total has dropped for the rematch to 44 and Cleveland enters this game on a 3-0 ‘under’ run while the Bengals are 2-0-1 to the low side in their last three.

L.A. Rams at Arizona: The pair met in Los Angeles in Week 2 with the Rams blanking the Cardinals 34-0 and the ‘under’ (43) was never in doubt. The books made a mistake with this week’s opener (47 ½) and the number was chewed down to 44 quickly. L.A. hasn’t been sharp lately and it enters this game off two consecutive losses. Arizona is ranked last in scoring (13.7 PPG) and expecting them to eclipse that number is a reach. I’d be very surprised to see the Rams (-14) lose this game to the Cardinals, who could easily be 0-14 right now. Expecting a similar outcome to the first meeting is very possible but the status of Rams running back Todd Gurley (knee) could keep the offensive output in check.

Denver at Oakland: (See Below)

Under the Lights

The ‘over’ went 2-1 last week in the primetime games and both of the tickets to the high side needed some late help, which was given in both the Chargers-Chiefs matchup on Thursday and the Eagles-Rams game on Sunday. Through 46 primetime games, the ‘over’ sits at 24-22 in games played under the lights this season.

Primetime Total Results (O/U): TNF (10-5), SNF (6-9), MNF (8-8)

Kansas City at Seattle: Along with the Saints-Steelers, this is the only other total listed in the fifties this week. While a couple tickets could’ve gone the other way, the Chiefs have seen the ‘over’ cash in their last four games. On the road, Kansas City has been a great ‘over’ bet (6-1). Seattle has gone 5-1 to the ‘over’ in the second-half of the season and the offense (29.1 PPG) has been clicking lately.

Denver at Oakland: This Christmas Eve matchup looks like a toss-up and some pundits believe it could be the final game for the Raiders in Oakland. The ‘under’ has cashed in the last four encounters between the pair and that includes a 20-19 win by Denver in Week 2 at home. If you’re leaning to the high side, then you’re expecting the Broncos to take advantage of Oakland’s worst scoring defense (29.9 PPG).

Fearless Predictions

After the early games concluded, I thought our teaser was looking golden but I guess I underestimated the issue with both the Patriots and Steelers. We caught a push and that alleviated the weekly loss ($110) but we lost another piece of our bankroll ($755). As always, Press, Pass or Fade but in the end – Good Luck and Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Best Over: Tampa Bay-Dallas 48
Best Under: L.A. Rams-Arizona 44
Best Team Total: Over Kansas City Chiefs 28

Three-Team Total Teaser (+7.5, +105)
Over Tampa Bay-Dallas 40 ½
Under Jacksonville-Miami 45 ½
Under Chicago-San Francisco 51

Chris David can be reached at [email protected]

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