Last Updated Dec 28, 2022, 4:48 PM

NFL Week 16 Parlay Picks and Predictions

Betting expert Michael Crosson provides his top parlay selections for Week 16 of the NFL season. Odds provided by DraftKings.

ATS Parlay Best Bet

  • Minnesota Vikings -3.5 (-110) vs. NYG
  • San Francisco 49ers -7 (-110) vs. WAS

Payout: +264

Minnesota Vikings -3.5 (-110) vs. NYG

The Vikings are having one of the most thrilling seasons in recent memory, and it seems like every time we start to think, “Wow, this run can’t get any crazier” they immediately one-up themselves with a wild turn of events. 

But none more so than last week, as the Vikings went to halftime of their previous affair trailing the Colts by a score of 33-0, and against all odds, Kirk Cousins and co. rallied from behind to force overtime and escape with a ridiculous 39-36 victory, marking the largest comeback in NFL history.

The Vikings boast an impressive record of 11-3 on the season. But they are still widely considered fraudulent due to their defensive shortcomings and lackluster point-differential.

However, nothing has ever been more fraudulent than the Giants’ stunning 7-2 start to this season. The Giants’ defense isn’t very good. They currently rank 26th in the league in total yardage and 28th in yards allowed per play.

But somehow, the G-Men escaped with wins in seven-of-nine contests out of the gate, despite averaging less than 21 PPG on the offensive side of the ball during that timeframe.

The cat is finally out of the bag now, though, as the Giants come tumbling down the homestretch on a 2-4-1 skid, highlighted by their defense surrendering 27+ points in over half of those contests (4).

The Vikings have caught a ton of flak throughout the season for their plethora of wins by slim one-score margins. However, several factors have gone into the equation over the course of Minnesota’s 11-3 run, and despite all the criticism, seven of their 11 wins have come by margins of 4+ points. So, I’ll back Minnesota to cover here.

San Francisco 49ers -7 (-110) vs. WAS

For those that believe the bottom half of the NFC East is still receiving a bit too much love at this point of the season, this parlay is the one for you. As for my second play, I propose a fade of the Washington Commanders in Week 16.

The NFC East drew matchups against the entire AFC South and NFC North divisions this season, which has been an absolute cakewalk for these squads outside of Minnesota and surprisingly, Detroit as of late.

The overall weakness of the NFC East’s schedule has been well-documented in conversations surrounding Philly and Dallas. However, it seems like the lower-level squads like Washinngton and New York have somewhat skated by with their minor overachievements without much thought.

Personally, though, the Commanders and Giants still seem a bit overrated to me, with both squads currently hovering above .500, and now, top shelf NFC squads like the Vikings and 49ers are laying less than one possession at home against them.

Washington has actually become a fun team to root for with Taylor Heinicke at the helm, as prior to Week 13, the former Old Dominion Monarch led the Commanders to wins in five of his first six games after taking over in Week 7. Which includes the only loss of the year handed to the Eagles thus far.

However, their latest two outings against the G-Men speak for themselves. So, I think it’s about time to put my overrated theory to the test with the Commanders going on the road to face Brock Purdy and the red-hot 49ers this weekend.

The Niners have the best defense in the league, and they appear to get better each week, highlighted by San Francisco entering Week 16 riding an eight-game win streak, coming on the heels of their defense surrendering 17 points or less in all eight of those matchups.

Which certainly doesn’t bode well for a Commanders’ offense that’s now scored 20 points or less in three straight contests, and five of their last seven. So, I’ll back the Niners to handle Washington with relative ease after racking up an average of 29.7 PPG in Purdy’s first three games under center.

ML Parlay Best Bet

  • Detroit Lions ML (-150) @ CAR
  • Cleveland Browns ML (-150) vs. NO

Payout: +178

Detroit Lions ML (-150) @ CAR

Most of the time, when your squad is 5-9 heading into Week 16, there’s not much left to play for except bragging rights. However, Carolina actually controls its own destiny at this point of the season, considering the Panthers trail Tampa Bay by just one game in the NFC South standings, and they currently own a leg-up on the Bucs in the H2H tiebreaker, with a matchup against Tom Brady and co. still left to play.

So, if Carolina runs the table in these next three matchups, the road to the Divisional Round will go through Bank of America Stadium for some unlucky squad, as the Panthers could potentially post a losing record and wind up hosting a playoff game on Wild Card Weekend. But for a variety of reasons, I doubt that will be the case, and it starts with Carolina hosting the red-hot Lions this weekend. 

Detroit owns a relatively pedestrian record of 7-7 on the season, however, this has been one of the best squads in football since Week 9. The Lions enter Week 16 following wins in six of their last seven games, primarily propelled by their offense averaging 27.9 PPG across those contests.

However, Detroit’s defense has also shown some signs of life in recent weeks, highlighted by the Lions  holding their opponent to 17 points or less in four of their last seven matchups. So, I’ll back Dan Campbell’s crew to keep plowing ahead against a Carolina squad that’s 2-4 since Week 8.

Cleveland Browns ML (-150) vs. NO

So, I think it’s safe to say that the Deshaun Watson experiment hasn’t quite worked out for the Browns thus far, considering Cleveland’s offense has now generated 13 points or less in two-of-three matchups since Watson’s debut. 

There’s no getting around it either. Cleveland’s offense has looked completely out of sync the last three weeks. But against all odds, the Browns still posted a solid record of 2-1 in those contests thanks to some phenomenal play by their defense and special teams.

While on the other hand, the Saints have just been flying by the seat of their pants all season. And to the surprise of nobody, they’ve been average, at best, on both sides of the ball, considering New Orleans currently ranks 22nd in scoring offense and 17th in defense on the year. 

But because they play in the decrepit NFC South, the Saints also sit just one game out of a playoff spot with three games left to play. So, essentially, all four teams in the division have a legitimate shot at clinching a postseason berth, despite the Buccaneers being the only team that can still finish above the .500 mark if they run the table.

In the waking days of the Watson Era in Cleveland, the Browns have resembled something similar to Russell Wilson’s time in Denver. However, this still strikes me as a very different situation. And personally, I believe the struggles of this Saints squad have been slightly overshadowed by the abysmal performance of their division rivals. So, I’ll back Cleveland to handle business at home here.

Six-Point Teaser

  • Buffalo Bills -2.5 (-8.5) @ CHI
  • Eagles-Cowboys Under 53 (OU 47)

Payout: -120

Buffalo Bills -2.5 (-8.5) @ CHI

The Bears have looked much better on the offensive side of the ball during that back half of the season, but surprisingly, it hasn’t translated into any wins, as the Bears enter Week 16 riding a seven-game losing streak, despite Justin Fields and co. averaging a modest 23.4  PPG during that timeframe.

However, it really isn’t all that surprising when you factor in how bad their defense has played during that stretch, considering the Bears surrendered 25+ points on the defensive side of the ball in all seven of those contests.

While on the other hand, Buffalo certainly has its flaws, especially in the turnover department. But all things considered, the Bills are still one of the best teams in football, hands down, and they’ve actually turned the ball over just three times in their last five contests. So, they’re moving in the right direction. And they’ll probably roll past this Chicago squad that hasn’t won a game since October.

Eagles-Cowboys Under 53 (OU 47)

In the first matchup between these teams, the Eagles ran away with a 26-17 home victory in a contest that Dak Prescott was sidelined in. And now, ahead of their second meeting, the tables have been turned with Jalen Hurts currently listed as questionable for their Christmas Eve affair in Dallas.

But regardless of who plays quarterback for the Birds this week, I doubt we’ll see Nick Sirriani show his entire hand in preparation of a playoff meeting against the Cowboys, because, despite their inconsistencies, Mike McCarthy’s squad truly is one of the few threats to Philly in the NFC. And there’s a good chance we see a rubber match between these teams for all the marbles in the near future.

So, I’ll take an adjusted under here, as I think we’ll see a bit of a chess match between Sirriani and McCarthy this Saturday, with both coaches wanting to save some of their best third down packages for a potential playoff matchup, which inevitably, should lead to a conservative game script and a low-scoring affair.

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