Week 17 NFL Betting Preview

Winners Never Quit

I think Week 17 has some interesting plays. NFL betting Week 17 has always limited the number of trend action you can get your hands on. There are a number of teams that have nothing to play for. The Kansas City Chiefs have wrapped up the #1 seed in the AFC and will be resting Mahomes, Hill, and Kelce. The Pittsburgh Steelers have wrapped up the AFC North and will be resting players including Big Ben. Of course the afternoon games will have us on tilt and that is where I like the NFL betting action this week.

Stay Away From Games With Starters Out

I choose to stay away from the games where starters are benched. I just don’t know at what point the team says what the hell and pulls everyone or if they go down 10 points how much they really care. They aren’t just tricky games to predict they are sucker games for me. I only like NFL betting action where I know I’m getting the best from both squads. So play starter rest games at your own risk, that’s all I will say.

So buckleup buttercup, week 17 is not for the weak of heart.

The Thirsty Three

Week 16 – 0-3

Season total 25-20-3

Last week was my first 0-3 Thirsty Three.  I intend for it to be my last.

Green Bay Packers vs. the Chicago Bears (Spread Packers -5.5)

Play the number, not the teams. That’s the old adage right. This number is low to me considering the Green Bay Packers are rolling. They destroyed the Chicago Bears just 6 weeks ago. The Pack are playing for the #1 seed. This is essentially a playoff game for both teams and the Packers are just much better. They both desperately need to win. If the Packers win, they get the #1 overall seed in the NFC. If they lose, they need both Seattle and New Orleans to lose to get the #1 seed.  The #1 seed is the only seed getting a bye this year so this is a huge game.

Good thing the Packers are playing the Bears. This is when Aaron Rodgers goes to work. He loves playing the Bears. Rodgers is 19-5 including the 2010 NFC Conference Championship vs the Bears. He loves to destroy the souls of Bears fans and I don’t see that any different in this game. The Bears also have everything on the line this week. If they win, they are in the playoffs. If they lose, they need the Rams to beat the Cardinals to secure the 7th seed.

Chicago lost 41-25. The last time these two teams met and the score was closer than the game. The game was 41-10 entering the 4th quarter. I foresee this game being closer, but in the end just too much MVP A-Rod in this one. This Packers’ team is a bad matchup for the Bears. The Bears defense is wilting. Aaron is playing maybe the best football of his career. When the Packers go up two scores, that’s when their defense gets paid. The Bears will fight, but Mitch Trubisky and a fading defense will be too little for the NFC Conference favorites.

I like the Packers by two touchdowns.

Final Score: Packers 34 – Bears 20 (Packers cover the spread)

Arizona Cardinals vs. LA Rams (Spread Rams +1)

I know many NFL betters are staying off this one, especially early. Jared Goff has already been ruled out. Kyler Murray is about 50/50 from last reports to play. I don’t think it matters if Kyler plays or not. I like the Rams in this game.

Both teams have everything to play for and could see scenarios where if they lose they are out of the playoffs. If the Rams win then the they are the 6th seed and the Bears are the 7th seed, no matter the outcome of the Packers vs. Bears game. If the Cardinals win, they need the Bears to lose to be the 7th seed, but they have to win to get in the playoffs. With Kliff Kingsbury and Kyler Murray’s reputation on the line, they will throw everything they can at their division rivals.

I, for one, would love to see the Chris Strevelar and John Woolford game. Both of these backup QB’s intrigue me and could make for a very interesting final game of the regular season. No matter what happens with the Cardinals, I like the Rams in this game. The Cardinals are coming off a 20-12 let down loss to the nothing to play for 49ers. They were outcoached, outplayed, and man handled by a beat up 49ers team with their 3rd string QB.

I think the Rams have enough to overcome the Cards and claim the 6th seed in the playoffs. The Rams are a better team top to bottom. Jalen Ramsay on DeAndre Hopkins is a wash and Aaron Donald kills the Cardinals. Arizona is 7-8 ATS and the Rams are 8-7 ATS. Both middling teams meaning they usually play right around their number.

The last time these teams met the Rams and Cam Akers ran all over the Cards. Akers may not play in this one and the Rams are beat up. The average bettor would look at the injuries and the trends and think Kyler Murray playing would be the x-factor. However, he had a lower leg injury and will not be 100%. If Murray is forced to play pocket passer, I like the Rams defense to smother any playoff hopes for the Cardinals. You can close out the week with money in your NFL betting bank.

Final Score: Cardinals 17 – Rams 24 (Rams win outright and cover with 1 point)

New Orleans Saints vs. the Carolina Panthers (Spread Saints -5.5)

The last time these two teams met was way back in October. During Covid-19, this seems like 3 years ago.  These are different teams now, but they have similar tendencies. The Saints ran all over the Panthers in that game accumulating 138 rushing yards to 38 total rushing yards for the Panthers. These two teams know each other well, but coming off his historic performance I fully expect Alvin Kamara and Latavious Murray to continue to torment the dormant cats.

The Saints are playing for the #1 seed. Now with their game flexed to the afternoon, they will not have the chance to watch the scoreboard to see what happens in the Seattle and Green Bay games. They will all be going at the same time. I like the Saints to take care of business running the ball and stopping Mike Davis in the run game. I feel a lower scoring game than usually takes place between these two squads. The Saints end up taking care of business without much drama this week.

Final Score: Panthers 17 – Saints 34 (Saints cover the -5.5)

I hope you had a very Merry Christmas! Here’s to a fresh start in 2021! Stay here as I take the NFL betting thirsty three through the NFL playoffs all the way to the Super Bowl. Let’s keep cashing out those accounts good people!  Happy New Year!

Written by Keith James

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