Another week in the NFL kicks off on Friday afternoon as the Cowboys take on the Saints in a big NFC clash. As always, Tom Kelly has you covered with a preview for the marquee games in Week 13 as well as betting tips for the rest of the games below.
Week 12 saw us go 6-9, taking our record to 87-93 on the season. The middle part of the season has been a battle, but there’s no better time to turn it around and finish strong. It’s a 14 game slate this week with 4 teams enjoying the final byes of the season.
NFL Week 13 Betting Tips
Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints
Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Friday 12:20pm AEDT
The 7-4 Cowboys have lost 2 straight (and 3 of the last 4) after a thrilling thanksgiving loss to the Raiders last week. The schedule does open up a little now, and they still hold a two game lead in the NFC East. The team should get CeeDee Lamb back from his concussion, while Amari Cooper is a chance to return from COVID protocols, which is huge for a team that has struggled to move the ball in a couple of their recent losses. Ezekiel Elliot looks like he’ll be fine with his knee niggle, so the offense should be close to 100% other than a bit of match fitness. The defensive unit has probably dropped off as the season has worn on, but the Saints should be a much easier challenge than the last couple.
The Saints are 5-6, but they’ve now lost 4 in a row. The offensive struggles are easy enough to diagnose, as the absence of Jameis Winston, Alvin Kamara, Michael Thomas and now Adam Trautman and Mark Ingram has proved too difficult to cover. Ingram should be fine this week, and Kamara is a chance to overcome his knee problem. On the defensive side the inability to limit the opposition is uncharacteristic, but the task has been getting harder and harder given that the offense is not able to sustain drives and give them a chance to recover. If Kamara plays I don’t expect him to be at this best, so I feel good about siding with the Cowboys as the clearly superior team with enough to play for to ensure they stay clear in their division.
Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs
Arrowhead Stadium, Monday 12:20pm AEDT
The 6-5 Broncos have done well, and are surprisingly very much in with a chance to win the AFC West, just one game behind. Of course the Chiefs are the team leading the division, so an upset win in this one would square things up at the top. It’s been a mixed last month, with impressive wins over the Chargers and Cowboys, but a disappointing loss to the Eagles at home. The teams strength is a stifling defence, keeping the opposition under 20 points in 5 straight. Teddy Bridgewater provides steady QB play, and the two-headed RB beast of Melvin Gordon and Javonte Williams gets the job done most weeks. The upside for the team is in the play of Courtland Sutton, Jerry Jeudy and Noah Fant, who all have tremendous ability but have been slowed by injuries for the most part. Finding an extra gear in the passing game could make them a tough opponent.
The Chiefs are 7-4, and have now won 4 straight despite only looking at their best in one of them. With no easy-beat teams left on the schedule, they’ll need to come out of their bye ready to go, or risk getting swallowed up in such a competitive division. Of course the strength of the team is the star trio of Mahomes, Hill & Kelce. They’ve still been better than most this season, but there is a lot of room for improvement to reach the heights of the previous few campaigns. With a week off to freshen up any niggles, there is no reason they can’t get back to that level. The week off will also benefit Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who was solid in his one game back from a knee issue before the bye. Several linemen and defensive players have also had injury designations, so should benefit from the rest.
Despite being on the road, I feel that what we’ve seen from these two teams this season hasn’t been that far apart. The Chiefs are still flashy, but less effective than in the past, while the Broncos get the job done by wearing opponents down with a defensive style. With Mahomes & co not at their best, I like the chances of the Broncos being able to keep this one close.
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills
Bills Stadium, Tuesday 12:15pm AEDT
Preview coming later in the week...
Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints - See Above
Minnesota Vikings at Detroit Lions - Vikings -7 ($1.90 at Sportsbet)
Arizona Cardinals at Chicago Bears - Bears +7.5 ($1.95 at Sportsbet)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons - Falcons +11 ($1.94 at Sportsbet)
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans - Colts -9 ($1.87 at Sportsbet)
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Jets - Jets +6.5 ($1.94 at Sportsbet)
Los Angeles Chargers at Cincinnati Bengals - Chargers +3 ($1.96 at Sportsbet)
New York Giants at Miami Dolphins - Giants +5.5 ($1.90 at Sportsbet)
Washington Football Team at Las Vegas Raiders - Washington +2.5 ($1.96 at Sportsbet)
Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers - Ravens -4 ($1.86 at Sportsbet)
Jacksonville Jaguars at Los Angeles Rams - Jaguars +13 ($1.90 at Sportsbet)
San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks - 49ers -3.5 ($1.96 at Sportsbet)
Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs - See Above
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills - See Above