Steelers coach Mike Tomlin hasn’t introduced whether or not he’ll be benching his starters this week, however apparently, oddsmakers expect him to relaxation a number of key performs in Week 17, as a result of that is the one method to clarify the purpose unfold in Pittsburgh’s recreation towards Cleveland.
Within the early odds for Week 17, the Browns have opened as a seven-point favourite, which is a big quantity for Cleveland on this rivalry. This recreation will mark the primary time since 1989 that the Browns have been a favourite of seven or extra factors towards Pittsburgh. Thirty-one years in the past, the Browns had been a 10-point favourite over the Steelers in a recreation they might lose 17-7.
In case you’re questioning why the Steelers may depart a number of key gamers on the bench this week, it is as a result of they can not earn a first-round bye. With no likelihood to get the bye, Tomlin will possible be far more involved with getting his crew rested up, particularly for the reason that Steelers by no means actually bought a bye this 12 months. The crew’s bye was initially purported to occur again in Week 8, however then it bought switched due the COVID state of affairs involving the Titans again in October.
The Steelers had been additionally purported to get the mini-bye that you simply get after taking part in in a Thursday recreation, however additionally they misplaced that after their Thanksgiving recreation towards the Ravens bought postponed to the next Wednesday. Mainly, the Steelers have not had any day without work for practically 18 straight weeks and it will not be shocking if Tomlin decides to relaxation a couple of key gamers towards Cleveland.
Apart from the Steelers. there might be a number of groups that find yourself resting gamers, which is why Week 17 is normally a wild one within the NFL. With that in thoughts, let’s get to the early odds.
NFL Week 17 early odds
(All strains from William Hill Sportsbook except famous)
Opening line: TBA
The Payments are in all probability going to be fairly assured going into this recreation and that is as a result of they’re 6-1 straight-up of their previous seven video games towards the Dolphins (4-3 ATS), a file that features a 31-28 win again in Week 2 the place the Dolphins lined as a 5.5-point underdog. The Dolphins are literally an NFL-best 11-4 ATS on the season and so they’ve additionally lined in 9 of their previous 11 video games. The Payments have not been unhealthy themselves, as they’ve lined in six straight video games, which is the longest energetic streak within the NFL, however that streak might finish on Monday towards New England. One factor to remember for this recreation is that the Dolphins will get within the playoffs with a win. There’s additionally an opportunity that the Payments might relaxation some starters since they now not have an opportunity of incomes a first-round bye.
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Opening line: Patriots -5
Betting towards the Jets was once a money-maker, however not just lately. Not solely have they gained two straight video games outright, however they’re additionally 3-1 ATS of their previous 4. That being stated, they all the time appear to wrestle towards the Patriots. Because the begin of the 2014 season, the Jets are 1-12 straight-up towards New England, though they did go 8-5 ATS in these video games, which features a 30-27 Jets loss earlier this season the place New York lined as a 9-point underdog.
Opening line: Packers -4
If there’s one crew the Packers have completely owned over the previous few years, it is the Bears. Previously 20 conferences between these two groups, the Packers have gone 17-3 straight-up and 14-6 ATS. Nevertheless, the Bears may not be a pushover on this recreation and that is as a result of they’re 6-2 each straight-up and ATS this season in video games began by Mitchell Trubisky. The Bears have loads to play for on Sunday and that is as a result of a win will assure them a playoff spot. After all, the Packers can even have one thing to play for and that is as a result of a win for them will lock up the highest seed within the NFC.
Opening line: Vikings -6.5
In case you’ve been betting on the Vikings over the previous few weeks, then you definitely’re in all probability nearly broke and that is as a result of Minnesota is 0-6 ATS in its previous six video games (2-4 straight-up). If the Vikings can finish that streak towards anybody, it is in all probability the Lions. Of their previous six video games towards Detroit, the Vikings are 6-0 each straight-up and ATS.
Ravens (10-5) at Bengals (4-10-1)
Opening line: Ravens -11
If there’s one time you need to guess on the Bengals, it is in the course of the ultimate two weeks of the NFL season. Over the previous 10 years, the Bengals are a wildly spectacular 16-4-1 ATS when taking part in in Week 16 or Week 17 and that features their Sunday win over Houston the place the Bengals gained straight-up as a seven-point underdog. (The Bengals are 13-8 straight-up in these 21 video games). Though the Ravens have gained 4 straight on this collection, the Bengals are 9-5 ATS of their previous 14 video games towards Baltimore. The final time the Bengals had been a double-digit underdog got here in Week 15, after they upset the Steelers in a recreation the place Pittsburgh was favored by 14.5. As for the Ravens, they’ve lined in 5 straight video games.
Steelers (12-3) at Browns (10-5)
Opening line: Browns -7
In case you’re on the lookout for a one-sided rivalry within the NFL, this one positively qualifies. Not solely are the Browns 3-7 ATS of their previous 10 video games this season, however they’re additionally 2-12-1 straight-up of their previous 15 video games towards the Steelers. Nevertheless, they’re 2-1 each straight-up and ATS up to now three video games the place they have been favored towards Pittsburgh. If the purpose unfold holds, it will mark simply the simply the sixth time below Mike Tomlin that the Steelers have been an underdog of a landing or extra. Within the earlier 5 video games, they went 1-4 straight-up and 2-2-1 ATS.
Opening line: Colts -13.5
With the Colts needing a win to maintain their pictures on the playoffs alive, this may seem to be an apparent spot to guess Indy, however which may not really be the case and that is as a result of the Jaguars have had their quantity. Previously 10 video games between these two groups, the Jaguars have gone 7-3 straight-up and 8-1-1 ATS, which features a recreation again in Week 1 the place the Jags beat the Colts for his or her solely win of the season (The Colts had been favored by seven in that recreation). The Jaguars have already clinched the highest choose within the draft, to allow them to really attempt to win this recreation.
Titans (10-5) at Texans (4-11)
Opening line: Titans -7.5
The Titans are 4-2 each straight-up and ATS of their previous six video games towards the Texans and that features a recreation earlier this season the place Tennessee lined as a four-point favourite in a 42-36 time beyond regulation win. The Titans might be in a spot on Sunday the place a win will clinch the AFC South. However, the Texans can have nothing to play for and after they don’t have anything to play for, they appear to wrestle. Not solely have the Texans misplaced 4 straight, however they’re 1-3 ATS in these video games.
Opening line: TBA
Betting on the Chiefs to cowl after they’re taking part in towards an AFC West crew has been one of many best methods to become profitable over the previous 5 years. Since November 2015, the Chiefs have gone 31-3 straight up towards divisional opponents and 22-11-1 ATS. That whole contains going 12-1 straight-up and 9-4-1 ATS towards the Chargers the previous 13 occasions these two groups have performed. After all, this could be the one time you do not need to guess on the Chiefs and that is as a result of there’s an opportunity they may find yourself resting their starters. The Chiefs have clinched a first-round bye, which suggests they don’t have anything to play for this week. Even when that they had one thing to play for, they won’t be a wise guess and that is as a result of the Chiefs are 0-6-1 ATS of their previous seven video games.
Opening line: Cowboys -1
There’s loads on the road on this recreation and that is as a result of the winner might find yourself because the NFC East champion, however provided that Washington loses to the Eagles. The Cowboys are in all probability fairly excited to be taking part in the Giants and that is as a result of Dallas has gained seven straight video games on this collection whereas going 6-1 ATS in these video games.The Cowboys have additionally gained three in a row total and are 5-2 ATS over their previous seven video games, which is a loopy quantity when you think about that they began the season 0-8 ATS. As for the Giants, not solely are they 0-3 each straight-up and ATS of their previous three video games, however they’ve averaged simply 8.7 factors in these video games.
Washington (6-9) at Eagles (4-10-1)
Opening line: Eagles -1
The Soccer Workforce may need misplaced in Week 16, however they nonetheless management their playoff destiny. If Washington wins in Week 17, it’ll take dwelling the NFC East title. Regardless of Sunday’s loss to Carolina, Washington continues to be 5-1 ATS in its previous six video games (4-2 straight-up). As for the Eagles, though they do not have something to play for, they’ve dominated Washington over the previous few years. The Eagles are 6-1 straight-up and 5-2 ATS of their previous seven video games towards Washington, however the Soccer Workforce’s one win throughout that stretch did come this 12 months.
Opening line: Buccaneers -4.5
The Falcons are usually a crew you need to keep away from betting towards in the course of the ultimate week of the season and that is primarily as a result of they’ve gained 4 straight video games in Week 17. The Falcons have additionally lined in two straight video games towards Tampa, together with a Week 15 recreation that the Buccaneers gained. Earlier than you concentrate on betting this recreation, you are going to need discover out whether or not Tampa Bay might be taking part in its starters. The Buccaneers have already clinched a wild-card spot and might’t win the division, which suggests it will not be shocking if Bruce Arians sits some gamers on Sunday.
Opening line: Saints -4
As a result of Packers’ win on Sunday, it is going to be a protracted shot for the Saints to earn a first-round bye, which suggests there’s positively an opportunity that Sean Payton might find yourself resting a couple of key gamers for this recreation. With that in thoughts, that might make Carolina the smarter guess right here. Not solely are the Panthers 4-1 ATS of their previous 5 video games towards the Saints, however they’re additionally 9-4 ATS of their previous 13 video games total, which incorporates profitable outright as an underdog to Washington in Week 16.
Opening line: Broncos -1
The previous 5 weeks of the season have been a complete catastrophe for the Raiders. Since Week 11, the Raiders have gone 1-4 each straight-up and ATS. If the Raiders need to finish their season on a excessive notice, it is in all probability a very good factor they’re taking part in the Broncos and that is as a result of the Raiders have lined in six straight video games towards Denver (4-2 straight-up).
Opening line: TBA
This recreation is straightforward for the Cardinals: In the event that they win, they’re within the playoffs. However, in the event that they lose they’re out. After all, profitable this recreation will not be simple for the Cardinals and that is as a result of they will be taking part in a Rams crew that has completely dominated them. Since Sean McVay was employed in 2017, the Rams have gone 7-0 straight-up and 6-0-1 ATS towards Arizona. One factor to keep watch over right here is the well being of Jared Goff, who reportedly broke his thumb on Sunday. If Goff cannot go, the Rams beginning quarterback would possible be John Wolford, who’s by no means thrown an NFL cross. The Rams will make the playoffs with a win and so they additionally might clinch a postseason berth with a loss, however provided that the Bears additionally lose to the Packers.
Opening line: Seahawks -3.5
The Seahawks nonetheless have an out of doors shot on the high seed within the NFC, however simply because they’ve one thing to play for doesn’t suggest you need to guess on them, particularly since this recreation is on the highway. The Seahawks are 0-5 ATS Of their previous 5 highway video games, which is the second longest energetic non-covering steak for highway groups within the NFL (Eagles have a six-game streak). That being stated, this is not essentially a real highway recreation because it’s being performed in Arizona. With that in thoughts, there’s lot to love concerning the Seahawks on this spot like the truth that they’re 11-2 straight-up of their previous 13 video games towards San Francisco and 13-4-1 ATS of their previous 18 video games towards the 49ers.