Week 15 NFL Underdog Betting Picks
It was a dream week for public bettors, and the leading online sportsbooks took a beating as favorites went 12-2 SU and 11-3 ATS in Week 14. Our ugly underdog picks on the Jets and Texans got run over at the point of attack in defeat. Houston had the cover for 3 1/2 quarters until succumbing to Seattle. That drops our 2021 record picking only underdogs to 21-10 ATS (67.7%) with 16 outright winners. The five year underdog log on these pages is 121-89 (57.6%) with 63 outright winners.
We have the first Saturday games of the season and record Covid issues for teams in Week 15 has created massive line movement in the betting market. More than 75 players are on the Covid list. That includes the Browns hosting the Raiders Saturday followed by Saturday's key match-up between playoff contenders when the Colts host the Patriots.
Cleveland was a 6.5-point favorite when online sportsbooks released Week 15 lines. The line moved to -3, then down further to pick, +1 and now the Browns are a 3-point underdog as Baker Mayfield is out and backup QB Case Keenum was just announced Thursday afternoon that he's joined Mayfield on the Covid list. That leaves Nick Mullins as the only quarterback on the Browns active roster. We're watching this one more closely into Saturday. Would like to back the Browns, but uncertainty offers little clarity and probably best to just pass.
So there is much to follow with Covid, line movement and the latest injury reports, which you can check out at various sites including Pro Football Focus,
NFL Week 15 Underdog Picks
LA Chargers (+3) vs Kansas City - Chargers moneyline +160 at Bookmaker
Detroit (+13.5) vs Arizona - Lions moneyline +550 at Bovada
Kansas City at Los Angeles
Huge game in the AFC West and this total has spiked from 50.5 to 54.5 on game day. Flying footballs and a likely shootout, and a win by the Chargers (8-5) moves them on top of the division with a season sweep over the Chiefs (9-4) giving them the tiebreaker. Positive Covid casualties include Chiefs defensive star Chris Jones. The Chargers are the more efficient offensive team, and let's call for Justin Herbert to lead the LA to victory and snap the Chiefs 6-game winning streak.
New England at Indianapolis
By the way, the Colts rushing attack is going to lead to a victory Saturday and snap the Patriots 7-game winning streak. Both teams are off their bye week, and I see some Colts -2 now showing at more online sportsbooks. If we get the bonus to consensus 2 or down to pick, I'll include the Colts as one of our underdog picks. Rushing projections, schedule analysis and further evaluation into Saturday has riding the Colts. Teams that outrushed their opponent by 30 yards or more last week went 8-0 SU/ATS and are now 113-17 SU /104-26 ATS (80%) this season. The Patriots are a popular public underdog this week, and more are adding New England to teasers. I offer caution as we ride the Colts and the NFL's rushing leader Jonathan Taylor to pay dirt.
Arizona at Detroit
This line opened Cardinals -14 and is now -13 at more leading online sportsbooks. Arizona is off a Monday night loss in a key contest to the Rams, who I bet as underdog but didn't update on these pages. Similar to this week with more Covid cases, there were players that were game time decisions. Now the Cardinals are on a shot week laying a monster number on the road. Lions tight end TJ Hockenson (thumb) is now out for the season. Of course we want RB D'Andre Swift (shoulder) to play, but he could be shut down for the season. Backup RB Jamaal Williams is on Covid protocol. Concerns, so check status but we're on the Lions on our official Fairway Forecasts.
Houston at Jacksonville
Terrible teams and line is up favoring Jacksonville (-3.5 to -5.5) without fired coach Urban Meyer. We'll monitor more and may step in on the Texans if the line reaches +6 at BetOnline and we feel better about the Covid outbreak that has hit Houston. We'll maybe not, as the Texans are scoring less than 10 points per game with Davis Mills as the starting quarterback. That's why the total is down to 39.5. For those that watch, in-game betting is probably a better option.
Much to monitor this week, so check back for any updates and additions. Playing more in-play live betting than pre-flop is a better way to bet this week.
FairwayJay is a proven sports handicapper and is recognized as one of the sports industry's most insightful analysts. He chips in additional sports betting coverage and reporting on industry news and events. Read more great insights from FairwayJay and follow him on Twitter: @FairwayJay
Week 15 NFL Underdog Betting Picks