The last round of the regular season and so much to play for. All three of our NFL best bets are in games with playoff implications attached to them.
Can the Saints win to give themselves a chance at top spot in the NFC? Who will get the three wildcard slots in the AFC?
Our NFL best bets help answer both of those questions so get stuck in below!
Miami Dolphins @ Buffalo Bills
The Miami Dolphins are playing for their postseason opportunity. A simple scenario of win and they are in, however they are travelling to Buffalo to take on the hottest team in football right now.
Buffalo have won five in a row and should seriously have won nine in a row if it wasn’t for a hail mary by Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals.
While he is a clear third favorite in the odds, Josh Allen has made MVP discussions very interesting in the back half of the season with his exceptional play and Buffalo’s success.
Over the last four weeks Allen is averaging three touchdowns and 323 yards per game with his arm and over 25 yards per game and two total touchdowns with his legs.
— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) December 30, 2020
Miami have won four of their last five, but struggled against the Raiders last Saturday afternoon. Tua Tagovailoa was benched for Ryan Fitzpatrick in the one point win, but Fitzpatrick has tested positive for COVID-19 and will miss this clash meaning it is all on the rookie’s shoulders now.
A clean three points is nice as we get the opportunity for a push, but Buffalo’s form lately indicates that this should be more than a three point ball game.
NFL Best Bet: Buffalo Bills -3.0 (-115)
New Orleans Saints @ Carolina Panthers
The New Orleans Saints are playing for the number one spot in the NFC when they travel to Carolina to take on the Panthers.
Last time these sides met, things were tied up heading into the fourth and the only points scored were a New Orleans field goal for the three point win.
Carolina had just had just 37 total rushing yards in that one but average over 100 for the season. Both Christian McCaffrey and Mike Davis are expected to miss this one which doesn’t bode well for Carolina against the Saints’ incredible defense.
They allow the third fewest total yards and fourth fewest rushing yards per game whilst also being in the top ten for passing yards and points allowed per game.
— NFL (@NFL) December 31, 2020
The Panthers are playing much better of late and over their last six quarters, Carolina has outscored Green Bay and Washington 33-16. Their form has been great of late and despite their injuries they always find a way to get the job done and at least be competitive.
New Orleans is coming off one of the biggest wins of the season where Alvin Kamara had 155 rushing yards and six touchdowns. The Saints beat the Vikings 52-33 but Drew Brees threw two picks and no touchdowns and Carolina has a much better defense than Minnesota.
While the Saints should win this, Carolina should keep the margin under a touchdown.
NFL Best Bet: Carolina Panthers +6.5 (-105)
Baltimore Ravens @ Cincinnati Bengals
This is a massive spread but Baltimore is playing that well at the moment. A 14 point victory over the Giants followed a 26 point victory over the Jaguars and now they travel to Cincinnati to take on a Bengals side that they beat 27-3 earlier in the year.
The Bengals are a completely different side now with Brandon Allen in as quarterback and doing a very fine job in the last two weeks. A massive upset win over the Steelers was followed up with a six point victory over the Texans in Houston. Allen passed for 371 yards, two touchdowns and no picks in the win while Samaje Perine ran for 95 yards and two touchdowns.
JK Dobbins lost a fumble, talked to Coach Harbaugh, then came back and scored.
This is coaching.
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) December 31, 2020
They now face a much tougher ask in the red hot Ravens. Baltimore has had two consecutive weeks of keeping opponents to 14 points or fewer and now ranks ninth for total yards allowed and fourth for points allowed per game.
The win over the Giants last Sunday saw three Ravens rush for over 75 yards with Gus Edwards (85 yards), Lamar Jackson (80 yards) and J. K. Dobbins (77 yards and one touchdown) all flexing their worth over New York.
Cincinnati’s defense allows the eighth most rushing yards per game in the league and just allowed David Johnson to go off for 128 yards and one touchdown last Sunday.
Expect the Ravens to have a monster game on the ground and win their way into fifth place in the AFC to potentially set up a rematch with the Tennessee Titans.
NFL Best Bet: Baltimore Ravens -13.0 (-105)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of PointsBet.