Fairway's Football Forecast And 2021 NFL Week 16 Underdog Picks And Insights

Off a huge outright underdog winner on the lowly Lions, FairwayJay chips in more underdog picks looking to improve on his sensational season of 22-11 ATS with 17 outright underdog winners.

Week 16 NFL Underdog Betting Picks 

One week after the leading online sportsbooks took beating when betting favorites went 12-2 SU and 11-3 ATS in Week 14, the 'Dogs barked and bounced back in Week 15 and the sportsbooks had a winning week over a majority of bettors. Not us however, as we had the largest 'Dog, um Lion, in his own den as last place Detroit crushed the first place Cardinals 30-12 as a 13-point underdog. For those of you that followed along and had the balls to bet the moneyline, you were rewarded like the Lion King with a +575 payoff.

That result moved our 2021 'Dog log and NFL underdog picks to 22-11 ATS with 17 outright underdog winners. The five year underdog picks on these pages is 122-90 (57.5%) with 64 outright winners. 

That Lions win was a good makeup call for our very unfortunate Thursday night loss on the LA Chargers (+3), who led Kansas City late, only to allow the game-tying TD and lose in overtime, 34-28. So many missed fourth downs and opportunities inside the Chiefs 10 yard line, and the loss was far more costly to the Chargers having first place stolen from them at home. Los Angeles also rushed for 192 yards on 39 carries to 86 on 20 rushing attempts for the Chiefs. 

NFL underdog bets Week 1 6 Why is that of significance? Because updating our rushing stats and point of attack play data shows teams that outrush their opponent by 30 yards or more in a game are 99-39-1 SU and 102-37 ATS (73.4%) this season - right at the historical average of my proprietary data base and box score analysis tracking nearly 20 years.

Now add in that teams that rush the ball at least 30 times in a game are 121-20 SU and 111-30 ATS (78.7%). Teams that run the ball less than 23 times per game are 26-112 SU and 29-109 (21%). These are very solid stats and something to handicap and use as part of your weekly match-ups analysis. No matter how much the media tells you, or some of the increased passing stats show, running the ball with success and controlling the ball, clock and chains while winning the battle at the point of attack will always produce more winners than losers - on the scoreboard and in your betting account. 

The more dominant those rushing stats, like the Chargers over the Chiefs, and the stronger the percentage to win. Teams that run the ball for at least 150 yards in an NFL game (when their opponent does not) are 59-20 ATS (74.7%) this season. The Chargers 0-for-3 on fourth down deep in Chiefs red zone proved to be killers for their AFC West title hopes and us bettors, who even took +3.5 early in the week.

COVID Impact on NFL Games

Last week was a big setback for the NFL with COVID-19 hitting players and teams at a record rate. Games moved from Saturday to Monday and Sunday to Tuesday is not optimal, and the league took a ratings hit on those three moved games as well. 

Covid NFL trackerCheck out this COVID list tracker for players, teams and NFL Policies. You want to also check your online sportsbook rules regarding postponed games. Not all policies are the same. Some will allow bets to stand if the game is played within the same week or specified timeline, or others like offshore industry leader BetOnline have policies like this, which means you also need to re-bet the game at the current line, odds or total. 

BetOnlineAll sporting events must be played on the date and site as scheduled unless otherwise specified. Any event postponed, rescheduled or moved to another site will automatically constitute "No Action".  

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 injury report for Week 16

NFL Week 16 Underdog Picks 

(+6) at Atlanta - Lions moneyline +210 at Sportsbetting.ag
Buffalo (+2.5) at New England - Bills moneyline +120 at GT Bets
WFT (+10.5) at Dallas - Football Team moneyline +385 at BookMaker

Detroit at Atlanta

Currently laying -115 juice on the Lions +9 at Sportsbetting.ag and BetOnline. And it looks like backup QB Tim Boyle will make his second NFL start with Jared Goff on the COVID-list. Boyle played poorly at Cleveland in his debut with two INT's and just 77 yards passing. But the Lions only lost 13-10 on the road, as Lions Falcons free picktheir resurgent running game went for 168 rushing yards. Even with star RB D'Andre Swift out, backup RB Craig Reynolds rushed for 112 yards as the workhorse in last week's win. The Lions are now 2-3-1 SU and 5-1 ATS since Nov. 14, and four games were decided by 2-points or less with last week's 30-12 win over Arizona their best game this season. So who are the Falcons to be laying a TD with a bottom quartile offense and defense with a running game that rushes for less than 90 yards per game? Atlanta is 1-5 at home, and we'll take the risk on an inexperienced quarterback with reports that Boyle is much more comfortable and progressed significantly since his first start when he was coming off an injury and less than one week of preparation for his NFL debut start. Rookie WR Amon-Ra St. Brown has really emerged the last three games and is the Lions leading receiver after catching 26 for nearly 250 yards against the stronger defenses of Arizona, Denver and Minnesota. The Lions will still establish their running game that averages 4.5 yards per rush against a sub-par Falcons defense that allows 4.3 yards per rush. The Falcons are also 0-9 In The Stats having been outgained in every game since their bye week in October. Good luck if you bet on the dirty birds laying a touchdown. One more shot on the Lions, who despite just 2 wins, are among the best in the NFL cashing in at 9-5 ATS this season.

Buffalo at New England

Bills patriots betting predictionRematch and AFC East first place showdown in Foxboro after the Patriots won 14-10 in Week 13 with rookie QB Mac Jones passing the ball just three times for 19 yards. New England dominated the ground game with 222 rushing yards, and you know how we feel about that point of attack power. But we'll call for Buffalo to turn the tables, and you can buy the half point to +3 and also add the Bills to your teaser bets. We'll grade this at +3 if it gets there, which seems unlikely but could change with ongoing COVID and other injuries and issues as we saw so many betting lines bounce around last week. The Bills defense has held three of its last four opponents to 235 yards per game, and this projects to be another lower-scoring game with field position, minimizing mistakes, penalties and turnovers key to victory.

Washington at Dallas

Washington Dallas prediction pick bettingI made a small bet on the Giants last week as a big home 'Dog despite playing shorthanded. A tough ATS loss as New York had the back door open inside the Cowboys 10 yard line late in a 21-6 defeat. Uncertain and poor quarterback play is always a risk, which is why I didn't include on these pages. Game selection management is always key if posting or publishing picks to be documented. The Cowboys capitalized on numerous missing Giants’ defensive players last week, but Dallas actually only gained 4.7 yards per play on offense against a bottom-tier Giants defense with New York's impotent offense also among the worst in the league. Now the Football Team is taking back double-digits with a number of players returning from the COVID list including QB Taylor Heinicke, who cleared Wednesday. Washington (+6)Dallas Cowboys NFL pick played poorly in a comeback 27-20 loss to Dallas two weeks ago, but are healthier an plenty motivated for this rivalry rematch. The Dallas defense has returned to solid form in recent weeks led by rookie sensation LB Micah Parsons and NFL interception leader Trevon Diggs. Yes we're aware the Cowboys are 8-1 SU and 9-0 ATS against NFC foes this season, and also 11-1 SU and 10-2 ATS in its last 12 division home games. But balls out effort expected for the Football Team as they cling to slight playoff hopes having shown what they're capable of when healthy and playing better having beaten Tampa Bay as a double-digit 'Dog and recently winning on the road against the Raiders, who came into this same stadium and beat the Cowboys on Thanksgiving taking back fewer points. Sunday Night Football division duel and we side with another big ugly underdog. 

Still evaluating more match-ups and underdogs with the ongoing COVID, injuries and situations surrounding so many teams and players. That includes the ugly game at MetLife between the Jets and Jaguars, and the meaningful game in Minneapolis between the Rams and Vikings. Minnesota star RB Dalvin Cook is out and on COVID protocol with the line moving up and even some +3.5 popping on the Vikings. Check back through the weekend and follow other updates on OSGA and any updates on Twitter.

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   

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