NFL Picks and College Football Early Bowl Game Preview

Nov 22, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) throws the ball over Oakland Raiders defensive end Mario Jr. Edwards (97) during the second quarter at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Here are my picks for the NFL this week: Falcons -13, Packers -5.5, Bucs +7, Saints-Cardinals over 50.5, and Raiders-Chargers over 49. 

Get rich, kids. 

Now here is OddsShark’s NFL picks as well as today’s bowl gambling preview.

With only three weeks left in the NFL regular season, several teams are still scrambling for playoff spots while others are simply playing the role of spoilers down the final stretch – or fighting for draft positioning. Find out a few teams that will come through in Week 15 below.

Lions at Giants (-4) (Sun, 1 p.m. ET) – Matchup Report

Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford has been great this season, emerging as a legit NFL MVP candidate. However, Stafford is dealing with a hand injury, and New York’s defense will take advantage of that here in a key spot between two NFC playoff contenders. The Giants have won four of five after winning their previous game as underdogs, so look for them to flex their muscles defensively again with another win and cover.

Eagles at Ravens (-6) (Sun, 1 p.m. ET) – Matchup Report

Baltimore is coming off a disappointing road loss to the New England Patriots on Monday Night Football but will be playing its home finale here. The Ravens have won four in a row at M&T Bank Stadium both straight up and against the spread, and this is a must-win game with divisional road matchups versus the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals remaining. Look for Baltimore head coach John Harbaugh to have his players fired up for their fans.

49ers at Falcons (-14) (Sun, 4:05 p.m. ET) – Matchup Report

San Francisco quarterback Colin Kaepernick led his team to a 28-24 victory at Atlanta in the 2013 NFC Championship Game, which seems so long ago now. But the 49ers have won three in a row against the Falcons to go along with a 3-1 mark ATS in the past four meetings. In addition, Atlanta has been rotten as a favorite recently, failing to cover 12 of its last 15 in that role. San Francisco obviously laid an egg last week in blowing an early 14-0 lead in a 23-17 overtime loss at home to the New York Jets, so the betting public will likely fade this team again with nothing left to play for and a good shot at the No. 2 pick in next year’s NFL Draft. However, this is just too many points for the Falcons to cover and will be a closer game than expected.

Bowl season officially kicks off Saturday with five matchups that are viewed as relatively close according to sportsbooks monitored by Of the five games on the slate, only one has a team favored by as many as seven points, the New Mexico Lobos against the Texas-San Antonio Roadrunners in the New Mexico Bowl.

New Mexico obviously will have home-field advantage playing at University Stadium in Albuquerque but will be trying to win for just the second time in eight bowl games dating back all the way to the 1997 Bowl.

The Lobos have gone 1-6 straight up and 2-5 against the spread in their previous seven bowl appearances, but they have played well down the stretch overall. The team won six of seven SU and covered the spread five times to close out the campaign while UTSA split its last six under head coach Larry Coker, who led the Miami Hurricanes to their last national title in his first season there back in 2001.

Former Notre Dame head coach Bob Davie is taking New Mexico to its second straight bowl game after covering last year here in a 45-37 loss to the Arizona Wildcats as a nine-point underdog.

Other Saturday bowl game odds and betting trends . . .

Las Vegas Bowl – Houston (-3.5) vs. San Diego State

Houston is 7-0 SU in its last seven games after losing as a favorite.

San Diego State is 2-6 ATS in its last eight games in December.

Camellia Bowl – Appalachian State vs. Toledo (-1)

Appalachian State is 1-3 ATS in its last four games.

Toledo is 19-7 ATS in its last 26 games.

Cure Bowl – Central Florida (-5.5) vs. Arkansas State

Central Florida is 0-10 SU in its last 10 games against teams with winning records.

Arkansas State is 7-1 SU and 6-2 ATS in its last eight games.

New Orleans Bowl – Southern Miss (-4) vs. Louisiana-Lafayette

Southern Miss is 6-0 ATS in its last six games against Louisiana-Lafayette.

Louisiana-Lafayette is 7-2 SU and ATS in its last nine games in December.

Written by Clay Travis

OutKick founder, host and author. He's presently banned from appearing on both CNN and ESPN because he’s too honest for both.


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