NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 15, 2015



NFL Picks (Preseason 2015): 7-10-1 (-$1,420)
NFL Picks (Week 1, 2015): 10-6 (+$940)
NFL Picks (Week 2, 2015): 9-7 (-$895)
NFL Picks (Week 3, 2015): 7-9 (-$870)
NFL Picks (Week 4, 2015): 6-8-1 (-$360)
NFL Picks (Week 5, 2015): 6-6-2 (+$55)
NFL Picks (Week 6, 2015): 5-8-1 (-$690)
NFL Picks (Week 7, 2015): 4-9-1 (-$860)
NFL Picks (Week 8, 2015): 5-8-1 (+$520)
NFL Picks (Week 9, 2015): 8-5 (+$280)
NFL Picks (Week 10, 2015): 6-8 (-$610)
NFL Picks (Week 11, 2015): 5-6-3 (-$2,010)
NFL Picks (Week 12, 2015): 6-10 (-$1,050)
NFL Picks (Week 13, 2015): 8-7-1 (+$195)
NFL Picks (Week 14, 2015): 11-5 (+$1,550)

NFL Picks (2015): 103-112-7 (-$5,225)
NFL Picks (2014): 143-133-7 (-$1,885)
NFL Picks (2013): 144-131-8 (+$5,580)
NFL Picks (2012): 130-145-8 (-$5,760)
NFL Picks (2011): 137-133-12 (-$1,925)
NFL Picks (2010): 144-131-8 (+$6,080)
NFL Picks (2009): 151-124-9 (+$3,370)
NFL Picks (2008): 136-125-6 (+$4,330)
If you don't quite understand the line, total or anything else, go to my Sports Betting FAQ.

Vegas betting action updated Dec. 21, 5:35 p.m. ET. Follow @walterfootball for updates.


Go to Week 15 NFL Picks - Early Games







Cleveland Browns (3-10) at Seattle Seahawks (8-5)
Line: Seahawks by 15. Total: 45.

Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Seahawks -13.5.
Walt's Calculated Line: Seahawks -13.
Sunday, Dec 20, 4:05 ET
Comment on this game

The Game. Edge: Seahawks.

THE ADVENTURES OF TOM BRADY'S HAIRCUTS

I've been citing that Tom Brady has lost his "clutch" ability over the past few years, but I guess I can't do that any longer because he just won his fourth Super Bowl. Or, can I...? Brady, after all, reached the "Big Game" with the help of his deflated footballs.

Brady was stuck on three Super Bowls for a long time before he resorted to cheating. So, what happened? The obvious answer is his wife. But more specifically, it's the haircuts that his wife forces him into getting. It's unknown to the media, but Brady's haircuts are much more than just silly fashion statements; each haircut gives Brady a new persona. Including this one...



To see the story behind this one, check out the new Adventures of Tom Brady's Haircuts!

SEATTLE OFFENSE: I can't remember who said it, but someone on ESPN asked whether anyone could have success running the ball for the Seahawks. Typical ESPN nonsense. Oh, sure, we never heard of Thomas Rawls two months ago, so anyone can thrive in Seattle's backfield!

Rawls was very important to the team. He was actually an upgrade over Marshawn Lynch, who was hobbled when he was on the field. DuJuan Harris struggled as a replacement last week, and the newly signed Bryce Brown won't fare any better for the most part. This contest might be an exception, given how poor the Browns are versus the run, but overall, I don't see the Seahawks moving the chains on the ground successfully until Lynch returns.

Of course, the Seahawks will still score points because Russell Wilson is on fire. Wilson has been the hottest quarterback in the NFL recently, thanks to the adjustments made on the offensive line. There's a chance the Browns could slow him down a bit because their pass rush just accumulated nine sacks in a single game, but with Joe Haden out, the Browns don't have anyone overly imposing in their secondary, outside of Tashaun Gipson, who hasn't even been that great this year.

CLEVELAND OFFENSE: Johnny Manziel showed up to the game sober last week, which was a plus, though he seemed intoxicated when he threw a dumb interception while rolling left and heaving the ball way late over the middle of the field. Manziel also took a sack for a safety that was negated by a penalty, but he had a mostly positive outing otherwise.

However, this was against the 49ers. Battling the Seahawks will be a completely different story, even if Kam Chancellor is out. Manziel won't have the help of a great rushing attack again. Isaiah Crowell gashed the 49ers, but he won't have the same luck versus a dominant Seattle ground defense. Thus, Manziel will be asked to make more plays, which could be disastrous.

The one hope the Browns have is Manziel connecting with Gary Barnidge a bunch of times. You'd think the Seahawks were great at defending tight ends, but they're actually not, so Barnidge could be poised for a big game.

RECAP: This is another spread that is way too high. The Seahawks don't have much success covering these monstrous numbers against bad teams. They're just 3-3 ATS the Wilson era as double-digit home favorites in non-divisional games, so it's not like they're a lock to cover.

In fact, I like the Browns for a unit here, as I think they'll hang around. The Seahawks are coming off two massive blowouts on the road, so I don't see them being focused, and I actually think their offense will slow down a bit because of the Rawls injury. The Browns won't win or anything, but they'll stay within two touchdowns.

WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: This is a big favorite I won't be backing. The Seahawks signed Bryce Brown and Christine Michael, but that won't matter. Neither is even close to Rawls' talent level.

FINAL THOUGHTS: I can't see the Seahawks being up for this game, and I anticipate them sleepwalking through much of it. Seattle's a bit overvalued right now, given the running back situation, plus Kam Chancellor's status is unclear. This number is way too high, and wagering on favorites of 15 or more is generally not a good idea (38-50 ATS since 1989). Still, I can't bet more than one unit on Johnny Manziel against a good team.

SUNDAY NOTES: The public is pounding the Seahawks, but the sharps don't want anything to do with this game.


The Psychology. Edge: None.
No edge found.


The Vegas. Edge: Browns.
I'm surprised there's not more action on the Seahawks.
  • Percentage of money on Seattle: 80% (34,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Seahawks.
  • Seahawks are 35-15 ATS as home favorites since 2007.
  • Opening Line: Seahawks -14.
  • Opening Total: 43.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Seahawks 23, Browns 13
    Browns +15 (1 Unit) -- Incorrect; -$110
    Under 45 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Seahawks 30, Browns 13






    Green Bay Packers (9-4) at Oakland Raiders (5-8)
    Line: Packers by 4. Total: 47.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Packers -3.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Packers -1.
    Sunday, Dec 20, 4:05 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Packers.

    As you may have noticed, I'm posting these picks on Tuesday. My new schedule will be as follows:

    Tuesday Afternoon:
    NFL Picks
    Fantasy Football Weekly Rankings

    Tuesday Evening:
    Fantasy Football: Start Em, Sit Em

    Wednesday Afternoon:
    Live 2016 NFL Mock Draft

    Wednesday Evening:
    FanDuel Picks
    College Football Picks

    Everything else will remain the same. As always, check back during the week or follow me @walterfootball.

    GREEN BAY OFFENSE: Not to harp on this, but I thought it was ridiculous of Joe Buck and Troy Aikman to proclaim that the Packers were "back" throughout the Dallas game. Guys, I'm sorry you got stuck covering a sub-par contest in one of the most miserable 4 p.m. slots ever, but you didn't have to overreact to such an extreme level. It was a 14-7 game in the fourth quarter!

    It was irresponsible to say that the entire Green Bay squad was "back," but citing that Eddie Lacy had returned would've been appropriate. Referred to as "Eddie Lazy" before the game, Lacy trampled the Cowboys' defense, but he may not have nearly as much success in this affair. The Raiders have been exceptional against the run lately, limiting their previous four opponents to 2.66 yards per carry in as many weeks, which is actually the best figure in the NFL over that span.

    Meanwhile, I'm still not convinced that Aaron Rodgers isn't injured. He made some great throws against the Cowboys' poor secondary, but the offensive output was still inconsistent. His offensive line is still highly questionable, which is not good news, considering that Khalil Mack will be on the other side of the line of scrimmage this Sunday. Mack looked like Lawrence Taylor against the Broncos, and he should have similar success against the Packers.

    OAKLAND OFFENSE: The Raiders were pathetically limited to minus-12 yards of offense in the first half of the Denver game. They got things going in the second half, however, and they could parlay that into a strong performance here against a defense that isn't as good as the Broncos'.

    The Packers surrendered 5.3 yards per play to the Cowboys. That ordinarily wouldn't be a terrible figure, but Dallas had Matt Cassel throwing to an injured Dez Bryant, all while inept coordinator Scott Linehan foolishly kept the ball out of Darren McFadden's hands. Carr to a healthy Amari Cooper is obviously a better combination, and it helps that one of the starting cornerbacks, Sam Shields, is considered doubtful with a concussion.

    Latavius Murray should be able to run on the Packers as well. Darren McFadden and Robert Turbin combined for 165 rushing yards on just 17 carries - see what I mean about Linehan? - so giving Murray a steady workload should pay off.

    RECAP: Call me skeptical, but I don't think the Packers are back. They couldn't put the horrible Cowboys away until Rolando McClain got hurt, and they haven't averaged more than 5.6 yards per play in any game since before their Week 7 bye. As I wrote last week, a little birdie told me that Rodgers has a slight tear in his shoulder, though that didn't matter against the Cowboys because Lacy and James Starks ran wild. They won't be able to do that against Oakland's improved run defense.

    I like the Raiders here for a couple of units. They're a stronger team with Rodney Hudson back in the lineup, and they easily could have a better record if some things went their way. For instance, they were about to go up either nine or 13 against the Chiefs two weeks ago before an untimely pick-six deep in Kansas City territory. Plus, we're going against tons of public action, which is never a bad thing.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: There's a Raiders +3 -115 available on Bovada, which I'll consider. I'm going to wait, however.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: I thought about putting another unit on the Raiders now that the line is +3.5. The Packers are pretty overrated, but Oakland lost its talented right tackle, Austin Howard.

    SUNDAY NOTES: Public money has caused this spread to soar from -3 to -4. The books have been begging for sharp money on this game, but it hasn't come in. I don't really understand why.


    The Psychology. Edge: Raiders.
    A Breather Alert for the Packers, who have to take on the Cardinals and Vikings after this "easy" game.


    The Vegas. Edge: Raiders.
    Everyone is pounding the Packers like it's the easiest bet in the world.
  • Percentage of money on Green Bay: 87% (40,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Packers.
  • Aaron Rodgers is 66-40 ATS since 2009 (9-6 ATS as a favorite of 12+).
  • Aaron Rodgers is 27-21 ATS on the road as long as he's not favored by 6.5 or more points.
  • Opening Line: Packers -3.
  • Opening Total: 46.5.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Packers 21, Raiders 20
    Raiders +4 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220
    Under 47 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Packers 30, Raiders 20






    Miami Dolphins (5-8) at San Diego Chargers (3-10)
    Line: Chargers by 2.5. Total: 46.5.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Chargers -1.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Dolphins -2.
    Sunday, Dec 20, 4:25 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Dolphins.

    I don't know if you noticed, but I made a slight change to the home page to separate all of the categories of the site...

    You may have seen a section called Open Rant, where you can create your own blogs. If they are good enough, I'll post them on the home page or tweet them out.

    Our 2016 NFL Mock Draft Builder is live! Create your own mock, which could be placed in the mock database. I'll also tweet some of them out.

    We also have a NFL Power Rankings Builder. Don't like my power rankings? Create your own!

    MIAMI OFFENSE: I don't know which was worse Monday night: Ryan Tannehill's passing or Zac Taylor's play-calling. Both were horrific. Let's begin with Tannehill, who missed several open receivers, including Jarvis Landry for a potential game-tying touchdown. Tannehill cost his team a victory with his inconsistency. He did some things well, but needs to make big improvements.

    Taylor, meanwhile, asked Tannehill to throw 41 times, all while opting to give Lamar Miller just 12 carries. Miller had a big gain nearly every time he touched the ball, so that didn't make any sense. Perhaps seeing the error of his ways, Taylor could establish Miller early and often in this contest, which will pay off. The Chargers have the NFL's second-worst run defense (Saints), so Miller figures to have a huge performance.

    Miller's running will make things easier for Tannehill, who won't feel much pressure from a San Diego defense that has accumulated only 24 sacks all year, which ranks 25th in the NFL.

    SAN DIEGO OFFENSE: The Dolphins' scoring attack was so bad Monday night that it covered up for the defense, which refused to cover Odell Beckham Jr. on some instances. That was ridiculous. Fortunately for Miami, it won't have to deal with a prolific receiver in this matchup, as most of Philip Rivers' top weapons are hurt.

    The Chargers also have documented offensive line issues, which got worse last week when King Dunlap re-injured himself. They were limited to three points as a result, with Rivers having to make desperation heaves to move the chains. The Chiefs put great pressure on him, and I expect the Dolphins to do the same with Ndamukong Suh and Olivier Vernon. It won't be as hot and humid for Suh this week, so he won't have to waste another timeout to catch his breath.

    Miami also won't have to worry about the run. Melvin Richardson, erm, Gordon stinks, and it seems like the coaching staff wants to ride it out with him to give him confidence for next year. Unfortunately, it's a wasted down every time he touches the ball.

    RECAP: You know what's funny? There are probably going to be more Dolphin fans at this game than there were on Monday night. I'm sure there are plenty of '72 Dolphins/Dan Marino supporters who were stationed in San Diego, so they'll show up to see their team play. Meanwhile, Charger fans no longer exist, so this is effectively a home game for Miami.

    The Chargers are an abomination as hosts, so the fact that they're laying points makes no sense to me. They actually have a homefield disadvantage, so the superior Dolphins are the play here. I'm making it two units; it'd be three if I wasn't slightly concerned that Miami had to travel across the country on a short week. However, the Dolphins are better when traveling (see numbers below), so I don't think that's a huge deal.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: Nothing new here. The Chargers are going to fold at home again because they have no fans. I hope their players are already buying homes in Los Angeles.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: There appears to be sharp money on the Dolphins, but we'll know for sure Sunday morning. I don't know why they'd take the Chargers, who have a homefield disadvantage. I'm thinking about putting a third unit on this game.

    SUNDAY NOTES: In a shocking turn of events, the sharps have bet the Chargers. I'm at a loss for words. It dawned on me that some San Diego fans may actually show up to this game because it's the final home game ever there. With that in mind, I'm going to drop this to one unit.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: None.
    Equal action.
  • Percentage of money on San Diego: 57% (12,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Dolphins.
  • Underdog is 64-36 ATS in the Dolphins' last 100 games.
  • Dolphins are 20-6 ATS as a road underdog of less than 5 since 2008.
  • Philip Rivers is 31-22 ATS as a starter after Nov. 30 (14-9 ATS as an underdog).
  • Opening Line: Pick.
  • Opening Total: 45.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Dolphins 20, Chargers 13
    Dolphins +2.5 (1 Unit) -- Incorrect; -$110
    Under 46.5 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Chargers 30, Dolphins 14






    Denver Broncos (10-3) at Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5)
    Line: Steelers by 7. Total: 46.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Steelers -4.5.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Steelers -3.
    Sunday, Dec 20, 4:25 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: None.

    Emmitt on the Brink is back for Season 8! Episode 14 is posted. Kim Jong-un makes the ultimate threat against America, so Emmitt and his companions have to find the real North Korean Nuclear Facility as soon as possible.

    DENVER OFFENSE: The media's incompetence never ceases to amaze me. Numerous talking heads went on a rant about how the Broncos would have to turn back to Peyton Manning in the wake of Denver's latest loss. Uhh... why? Is it Brock Osweiler's fault that his receivers dropped countless passes, including some potential touchdowns? Did he have anything to do with his line's inability to block Khalil Mack? What would Manning have done differently, outside of heave helpless ducks? I'm actually hoping that Manning starts in the near future so I can bet against him in one final playoff choke job, but if the Broncos want to win the Super Bowl, they need to stick with Osweiler.

    Osweiler will have a chance to lead his team to victory here, as the Steelers have some problems in the secondary that can be exploited. Whether they'll actually be exploited depends on Demaryius Thomas and Vernon Davis. Will they actually catch passes, or will they continue to drop balls? One thing to watch for in this regard is Thomas' shoulder. That clearly affected his play last week, and it's unclear if that'll still be a factor. Even if Thomas struggles, Emmanuel Sanders will be there to pick up the slack.

    However, the offensive line will continue to be a concern for the Broncos, who will have trouble pass protecting against a Pittsburgh defense that thrives at getting after the quarterback. Opening up running lanes will also be an issue, as the Steelers clamp down on the rush pretty well.

    PITTSBURGH OFFENSE: The Steelers will be battling a defense that limited an opposing scoring unit that possesses a couple of explosive play-makers to minus-12 net yards in a half last week, so they have their work cut out for them. Even considering all the talent the Steelers have on this side of the ball, they could have trouble scoring.

    The Broncos have a terrific stop unit that ranks first in some categories. They're No. 1 against the run, so DeAngelo Williams won't get very much on the ground. They're also tops in sacks, meaning Ben Roethlisberger will constantly be under pressure. Alejandro Villanueva, replacing Kelvin Beachum, doesn't stand a chance against one of Denver's elite edge rushers.

    Denver also happens to be prolific while defending the pass, Aqib Talib deleted Amari Cooper last week, while Michael Crabtree was also silenced. The Broncos have three exceptional cornerbacks - a convenient figure to help cover Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant and Markus Wheaton. It's extremely difficult to smother Brown, thanks to his precise route-running, but he'll still be limited somewhat.

    RECAP: All anyone wants to talk about is how bad the Broncos have become suddenly. That's ridiculous. They would've beaten the Raiders had they not dropped all of those passes - and this is coming from someone who bet four units on Oakland!

    I love the Broncos this week. They're criminally underpriced, as they should be +3, +3.5 at the most. The Steelers are overvalued here. They've won by double digits in their past two games, but those victories came against the overmatched Colts and Andy Dalton- and Tyler Eifert-less Bengals. In fact, Cincinnati averaged way more yards per play in that contest, 6.9-5.1.

    This is a four-unit selection for me. We're getting tremendous value with the Broncos, and as an added bonus, we're going against the public, which is crucial in any Pittsburgh game because of the ownership's sportsbooking history.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: This is one of those magic -6.5 lines that seldom cover. This appears to be a trap, with the books coaxing the public into betting the Steelers. Pittsburgh is still getting more than 70 percent of the action.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: This spread makes no sense, but I'm concerned about the line movement. If the sharps like the Broncos, they're hiding it very well. We'll know for sure come Sunday.

    SUNDAY NOTES: A bit of sharp money has moved this from +7 -120 to +6.5, but not that much. Perhaps that'll change right before kickoff.

    SUNDAY AFTERNOON: I was monitoring this, and surely enough, the line jumped to -7. I don't understand why, but I'm happy to be getting a better number.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: None.
    Equal action.
  • Percentage of money on Pittsburgh: 53% (35,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Steelers.
  • Steelers are 32-14 ATS in December home games since 2000.
  • Opening Line: Steelers -5.5.
  • Opening Total: 45.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Steelers 20, Broncos 17
    Broncos +7 (4 Units) -- Push; $0
    Under 46 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Steelers 34, Broncos 27






    Cincinnati Bengals (10-3) at San Francisco 49ers (4-9)
    Line: Bengals by 6.5. Total: 41.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Bengals -7.
    Walt's Calculated Line: .
    Sunday, Dec 20, 4:25 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Bengals.

    A reminder that Jerks of the Week for this week is up, so just click the link. This week's jerks entry is Mad Mex.

    CINCINNATI OFFENSE: It appears as though Andy Dalton won't be out for the rest of the season with his thumb injury. That's the good news. The bad news is that he's considered "week to week" and won't be able to suit up for this contest. Instead, it'll be A.J. McCarron, who styles himself as the next Tom Brady.

    McCarron must have meant to say Brady Quinn in the press conference, but he could post stats similar to those Tom Brady compiles this week, given the matchup. The 49ers were truly pathetic this past Sunday, struggling to contain Johnny Manziel. The only times they stopped Cleveland's offense was when Manziel was doing stupid things. McCarron isn't talented at all, but he's at least a smarter player than Manziel.

    Actually, McCarron may post meager numbers in the event that the Bengals simply hand off to Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard on every play. Isaiah Crowell ripped right through the 49ers' pathetic ground defense last week, so Hill, a better runner, should be able to post huge numbers.

    SAN FRANCISCO OFFENSE: Blaine Gabbert had been playing decent football until last week's game. He was horrible, as he was in mega-Alex Smith mode, checking the ball down at every opportunity, especially on third downs. He wasn't completely to blame, though, as his offensive line surrendered nine sacks, which was just ridiculous.

    If the 49ers couldn't block the Browns, how are they going to deal with the Bengals' pass rush? Cleveland was 30th in sacks entering Week 14, while Cincinnati was ninth. The Bengals will dominate the trenches, forcing Gabbert into more short passes and sacks.

    So, will San Francisco be able to move the chains at all? It's unlikely. Their best chance is via Shaun Draughn, but that may not be an option if the Bengals are well ahead early. Also, the Bengals, who struggled versus the rush earlier in the year, have improved in that regard recently, surrendering less than four YPC in the past month.

    RECAP: I'm not overly thrilled to be siding with the public here, but that's what I'll be doing. I'd normally consider this a look-ahead situation for the Bengals, who battle the Broncos next week, but after losing by double digits and hearing that their season is over because of Dalton's injury, I have to think that they'll be out to prove that they can still win. The 49ers, meanwhile, look completely dead to me. They fought so hard to get a victory, and when they finally did in Chicago, it seemed like they thought their season was over. Any team that surrenders nine sacks is completely dysfunctional, so I'd be surprised if the 49ers were competitive.

    Having said that, I'm not in the mood to lay units with such a heavily backed road favorite that happens to be giving more than a field goal.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: Another 80-20 line. I'm not touching the Bengals with money, but don't want anything to do with the stinky 49ers. That said, I'll switch to San Francisco for no units if this is still 80-20 come Sunday.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: I'm sticking with the Bengals. The line movement makes me feel better about them.

    SUNDAY NOTES: The pros usually don't like road favorites, but that's what's happening here. They bet the Bengals up from -4 to -6.5. Unfortunately, all value is gone.


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    The Bengals have to take on the Broncos and a divisional rival after this game. Then again, they could be looking to prove that they can win with A.J. McCarron. Their motivation seems unclear.


    The Vegas. Edge: 49ers.
    Why would anyone bet on San Francisco?
  • Percentage of money on Cincinnati: 72% (24,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: 49ers.
  • Bengals are 6-12 ATS after playing the Steelers.
  • Opening Line: Bengals -4.
  • Opening Total: 42.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Bengals 20, 49ers 9
    Bengals -6.5 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Under 41 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Bengals 24, 49ers 14




    Arizona Cardinals (11-2) at Philadelphia Eagles (6-7)
    Line: Cardinals by 4. Total: 51.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Cardinals -3.5.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Cardinals -3.
    Sunday, Dec 20, 8:30 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: Cardinals.

    The Real John Moss is back! Well, sort of. The Real John Moss, the most illiterate human being on the planet, sent me what he thought was a very important e-mail.

    Check out the Real John Moss page with that e-mail and all the strange conversations I've had with him this year.

    ARIZONA OFFENSE: The Cardinals have owned one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL this season. They've been downright unstoppable at times. However, there's been some concern lately in terms of their offensive line. Some of the opponents Arizona has battled recently have rattled Carson Palmer, and Philadelphia is more than capable of doing that. The Eagles' defensive front dominated the trenches in last week's victory against the Bills, with Vinny Curry putting together a terrific performance.

    The Eagles will absolutely have to generate lots of pressure on Palmer to aid their putrid secondary. Byron Maxwell is an abomination, and Philadelphia has struggled to cover No. 1 receivers as a result. The Cardinals have three strong wideouts, so even if the Eagles harass Palmer often, Arizona will still score a decent amount. However, the Eagles can limit their offense from going off if they can put heat on Palmer.

    Another positive matchup in the Eagles' favor will be their ability to handle David Johnson. The rookie runner has been an upgrade over the worn-down Chris Johnson, but will have a tough battle versus Philadelphia's defensive line, which has stopped the run well for the most part this year, save for a stretch in which they seemed to quit when Mark Sanchez was on the field. And who wouldn't want to quit when Sanchez is on the field? I had an urge to quit this Web site when Sanchez was on the field.

    PHILADELPHIA OFFENSE: The Cardinals have some terrific personnel on this side of the ball, but they have one major weakness: They can't rush the passer without sending multiple blitzers. They couldn't even put heat on Teddy Bridgewater last Thursday night without pressuring with extra men, and the Vikings have a poor offensive line. The Eagles don't have the best blocking, but the Cardinals will continue to blitz, and if their victory over Minnesota is any indication, they won't deviate from their strategy.

    Sam Bradford should be able to pick apart the blitz, and it actually benefits him that he doesn't latch on to one target because between Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu, the Cardinals would be able to erase that player. What they also can do is delete tight ends; they're one of the top teams in the league in terms of covering players at that position, so don't expect much from Zach Ertz and Brent Celek.

    The Eagles will struggle to get anything going from their ground attack. Adrian Peterson ran with great energy last Thursday, yet managed only 69 yards on 23 carries. What's DeMarco Murray going to do besides complain more to ownership?

    RECAP: It seems like the Cardinals have been sleepwalking ever since notching victories against the Seahawks and Bengals in back-to-back prime-time affairs. They barely beat the 49ers, then looked lethargic versus the Rams (albeit eventually winning in a blowout victory because Nick Foles was so bad), and then followed that up by nearly losing to the Vikings. They've had extra time off to fix some things, but they could be looking ahead to Green Bay and Seattle. If their lethargy is prevalent again, it could hurt them against Philadelphia.

    The Eagles, meanwhile, are still undervalued because the public remembers what happened on Thanksgiving. Philadelphia was awful in two losses with Sanchez, but has predictably improved since Bradford's return. The team is still undervalued, as evidenced by this spread and betting action. The amount of money on Arizona is obscene!

    I'm taking the Eagles for two units. Facebook friend Mark P. advocated betting them as my Pick of the Month, and he made some great points, but I don't want to wager too heavily against one of the NFL's top coaches with extra rest. Having said that, the Cardinals shouldn't be laying the hook on the road, so the Eagles appear to be the right side.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: If you want to get an Eagles bet in early, consider +3.5 -105 at Bovada. This is another 80-20 game.

    SATURDAY THOUGHTS: There's so much money on the Cardinals. The Eagles can be had at +4 on Bovada. I still like them for two units.

    SUNDAY NOTES: I'd lock in +4 right now, though it's a bit of a concern that the sharps haven't bet the Eagles. That could change prior to kickoff.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: Vegas got absolutely slaughtered this Sunday. Every single highly bet team - Texans, Chiefs, Patriots, Seahawks, Packers, Bengals - covered the spread. This might be one of the worst days ever for the house. They need the Eagles to cover, or people might be buried in the desert. The sharp side appears to be Philadelphia; Pinnacle, the sharpest book out there, has -3.5. Bovada, the squarest book, has -4.5 listed. It's -4 elsewhere. Philadelphia should cover, but I'd have more confidence in that if I didn't just see all of the ridiculous things that happened today.


    The Psychology. Edge: Eagles.
    This game means nothing to the Cardinals, who battle the Packers and Seahawks the next two weeks.


    The Vegas. Edge: Eagles.
    There's almost no money on Philadelphia.
  • Percentage of money on Arizona: 77% (37,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Cardinals.
  • Bruce Arians is 29-16 ATS as head coach of the Cardinals.
  • Eagles are 17-31 ATS at home since 2010.
  • Opening Line: Cardinals -3.5.
  • Opening Total: 50.5.
  • Weather: .


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Cardinals 24, Eagles 23
    Eagles +4 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220
    Under 51 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Cardinals 40, Eagles 17




    Detroit Lions (4-9) at New Orleans Saints (5-8)
    Line: Saints by 3. Total: 51.5.

    Las Vegas Hilton Advance Point Spread: Saints -1.5.
    Walt's Calculated Line: Saints -2.5.
    Monday, Dec 21, 8:30 ET
    Comment on this game

    The Game. Edge: None.

    This week on ESPN, we're going to have Mike Tirico and Jon Gruden calling the shots instead the great preseason homers like Kevin Reilly, Ron Wolfley and Don Tollefson, inept ESPN guys Emmitt, Herman Edwards and Matt Millen, and mindless automatons like Dan Fouts. Here's what it would sound like if these seven clowns (and some special guests) were calling this game:

    Reilly: Welcome to the city of New Orleans, home of the Saints. Tonight, the Detroit Tigers play the New Orleans Saints. Guys, this is another boring game for us so I barely did any research going into this game. In fact, I was out all last night at this bar called the Boot. I wanted to try alcohol because mother didn't accompany me on a road trip for the first time. She had a Bingo championship to go to. So, I wanted to try alcohol, but didn't want to go to the French Quarter because all French people are homosexuals, so the Boot seemed like a natual place to go.

    Millen: Kevin, you aren't even close to being accurate. I heard the same rumors you did, that all French people love to insert kielbasas into their backside. That's why I took a trip to Paris a few years ago. I packed all of these rare and exotic kielbasas that I planned to use on French rear ends, but to my surprise, the French did not consider this to be a fun activity. Not even some rogue Frenchman was interested in having his kielbasas inserted into his backside. Instead, the French wanted to insert salmon into each other's backside, which I found very offensive. I know different cultures have their differences, but guys, I don't even care if France is wiped off the face of the planet at this point.

    Emmitt: Mike, or... uhh... Bobo, I do not understand what you say. You say that French can be wipe off the face of the planet. But I look at a map of this planet and do not see a face. Unless, of course, you meant Mount Rushing which have the face of the four president of United States, President Washington, President Lincoln, President Franklin and President Nixon.

    Herm: LOTS OF MISTAKES THERE! YOU MADE LOTS OF MISTAKES! ACTUALLY, ONLY TWO MISTAKES! TWO ISN'T A LOT, TECHNICALLY! I WOULDN'T SAY TWO IS A LOT! BUT DEPENDS WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT! TWO COULD BE A LOT! TWO COULD BE A FEW! THAT ALL DEPENDS! THAT'S ALL RELATIVE! SOMETIMES 10 ISN'T A LOT! SOMETIMES 100 ISN'T A LOT! SOMETIMES 1,000 ISN'T A LOT! LIKE I SAID, ALL RELATIVE! ALL HAS TO BE TAKEN INTO CONTEXT! ALL ABOUT THE CONTEXT! IT HAS EVERYTHING TO DO WITH CONTEXT! CONTEXT CLUES! THE CLUES ARE IN THE CONTEXT! BUT YOU SAID PRESIDENT FRANKLIN IS ON MOUNT RUSHMORE! YOU SAID PRESIDENT NIXON IS ON MOUNT RUSHMORE! THEY'RE NOT THERE! FACES NOT THERE! DIFFERENT FACES! DIFFERENT PLACES! AND FRANKLIN'S NOT A PRESIDENT! WAS NEVER A PRESIDENT! COULD'VE BEEN A PRESIDENT! BUT DIDN'T BECOME A PRESIDENT! HE WAS AN INVENTOR! INVENTED LIGHTNING! HE USED A KITE TO INVENT LIGHTNING! IF ONLY HERM COULD USE A KITE TO INVENT SOMETHING! HERM'S GOTTA THINK ABOUT A GOOD INVENTION! HERM'S GOTTA THINK TO MAKE A FORTUNE! HERM'S GOTTA COME UP WITH SOMETHING! OTHERWISE, GONNA BE STUCK WITH YOU GUYS FOREVER! GONNA BE STUCK HERE FOR AN ETERNITY! GONNA BE STUCK AND CAN'T GO ANYWHERE! CAN'T GO NOWHERE! CAN'T GO AT ALL! CAN'T GO... UHH... WHERE'S HERM TRYING TO GO!? HERM FORGOT! HERM FORGOT WHERE HE'S GOING? HERM... uhh... umm...

    Reilly: Wait, wait, wait, you think you're stuck here with me!? I'm stuck with you, a**hole! I've been trying to get rid of you for years!

    Tollefson: Kevin, if you're trying to get rid of someone, I can help you. Just give me $5,000 in unmarked bills, and I'll get rid of anyone, even if it's President Obama. And don't worry, it won't be traced back to you. Some of the naked women who usually cook and clean for me are capable of erasing all evidence. It's pretty remarkable. I used to think that women were useless unless it came to cooking and cleaning naked, but they can also get rid of evidence pretty impressively.

    Fouts: And here's what he means by getting rid of evidence. You have evidence. It can be a piece of paper or a videotape or a computer file. The evidence might be good or bad. And here's what I mean by good or bad. It can either be good, which means positive, or not bad, or it could be bad, which means negative, or not good. Good is not bad, and bad is not good. Those are the true definitions of good and bad. Now, you need to get rid of this evidence. That means you have to make it disappear. There are many ways to do this. You could hire a magician, who can make things vanish. If he can make a rabbit vanish, he can make evidence vanish. You can put it in a treasure chest and throw it to the bottom of the sea. Only pirates will be able to find it, and pirates won't know what to do with evidence. That's because pirates are not intelligent people.

    Wolfley: I HAVE TO DISAGREE WITH YOU, DAN. PIRATES ARE VERY INTELLIGENT. PIRATES HAVE PARROTS AS PETS, AND PARROTS TELL THEM EVERYTHING BECAUSE PARROTS ARE THE SMARTEST ANIMALS IN THE UNIVERSE. I HAD A PARROT ONCE AND HE TOLD ME TO BUY GOOGLE STOCK SO I BOUGHT ALTAVISTA STOCK INSTEAD BECAUSE I THOUGHT HE WAS STUPID BUT IT TURNS OUT HE WAS RIGHT.

    Reilly: I remember Altavista.com. That was the search engine both mother and I used when we... oh guys, I miss mother! Why did she have to have bingo championships during a road trip!?

    Charles Davis: I'll make you feel better, Kevin. Let's discuss some search engines, Kevin. How about we go easy and start with the one everyone uses, Kevin? That would be Google, Kevin. What about another famous one to ease into it, Kevin? It's Yahoo!, Kevin. And Yahoo! has an exclamation point, Kevin. Not a question mark, Kevin. How about some more obscure ones, Kevin? Let's take a gander at Bing, Kevin. That's owned by Microsoft, Kevin. Let's go with a faster pace, Kevin. How about Ask Jeeves, Kevin? Let's talk about Dogpile, Kevin. What about DuckDuckGo, Kevin? How about I let you guess, Kevin? I'll name three possible search engines and you guess which is really a search engine, Kevin. First option, Doritos.com, Kevin. Second option, Baidu.com, Kevin. Third option, KevinReilly.com, Kevin. Oh, you think it's Doritos.com, Kevin? One more guess, Kevin. Oh, you think it's KevinReilly.com, Kevin? Nope, Kevin! It's the one you didn't guess, Kevin! It's Baidu.com, Kevin!

    Reilly: THAT'S IT! I DON'T CARE WHAT MOTHER SAYS ANYMORE! I'M GOING TO KILL YOU AND FEED THE PIECES TO WOLFLEY'S PET PARROT! HA! We'll be back right after this!

    DETROIT OFFENSE: Many thought the Lions would both win and cover in St. Louis. That didn't happen, as Detroit's scoring unit was shut down. Two things transpired. First, Trumaine Johnson completely blanketed Calvin Johnson. The former Johnson is one of the top cornerbacks in the NFL, so his ability to smother the latter Johnson was not surprising in the slightest. Second, the Rams' pass rush put too much heat on the Lions, who were seldom able to get out of second-and-long situations.

    The Lions won't have to worry about either element in this contest. Trumaine Johnson obviously won't be around, but the Saints don't have anyone of his caliber in their secondary. In fact, New Orleans can't defend the pass whatsoever. Matthew Stafford should have a huge performance as a consequence, and it's not like he'll face much pressure from New Orleans' lacking pass rush.

    The Saints also struggle when it comes to defending the rush, ranking dead last against it in terms of YPC. The Lions don't run the ball extremely well, but they'll have some success on the ground in this contest to make things even easier Stafford.

    NEW ORLEANS OFFENSE: The Saints don't do anything well on the defensive side of the ball, but the Lions do. A couple of things: First, despite what Todd Gurley did to them, they're somewhat decent against the run. Tim Hightower came out of nowhere to perform well in his 2015 debut against the Buccaneers, but I don't expect history to repeat itself in that regard. There's a reason Hightower was a street free agent for so long.

    Second, the Lions generate a decent amount of pressure on the quarterback, as they're tied for ninth in sacks. The Saints don't have the greatest protection, especially on the interior, but they'll also have to worry about Ziggy Ansah, who ranks in the top five of sacks this season.

    Having said that, the Saints still have Drew Brees the last time I checked. Brees has begun heating up recently, battling the Panthers well and then upsetting the Buccaneers on the road. The Lions have a top-caliber cornerback in Darius Slay, but their safety play is suspect. I'd expect Brees to take advantage of this liability.

    RECAP: We know this spread was -3 a week ago, but what about two weeks ago? The Lions were off a 45-14 drilling of the Eagles, while the Saints lost to the Texans, 24-6. This might have been a pick-em game, or Detroit might have even been favored.

    Thanks to recency bias, the Saints are now -3, so let's go against that. The Lions had a major letdown against the Rams, which was predictable, given how they got screwed at the end of the Green Bay game. I'm a bit worried that they'll be completely checked out, but if they go back to trying hard, they should be able to cover or at least push this number. They have the better defense, and they'll score on the Saints, who will be a bit too high coming off a rare win.

    Unfortunately, this is a non-bet for me. As mentioned, Detroit's motivation is a complete unknown. If I knew I was getting them at 100 percent, this would probably be a two-unit wager.

    WEDNESDAY THOUGHTS: It's looking like this line may rise, moving off -3. The sharps haven't shown any interest in the Lions yet.

    SATURDAY THOUGHTS: I was wrong about the line movement. The number is dropping, so if you like the Lions, get them at +3 now.

    FINAL THOUGHTS: I don't know what to think about this game because Detroit's motivation is unclear. They mailed it in last week because of the Green Bay Hail Mary. Will that continue? If so, this will be a New Orleans blowout. If not, I like Detroit's chances, and the sharps do too. They've bet the Lions off +3. The public, meanwhile, is pounding the Saints. The books can't continue to lose, can they?


    The Psychology. Edge: None.
    No edge found.


    The Vegas. Edge: Lions.
    Everyone is officially off the Detroit bandwagon.
  • Percentage of money on New Orleans: 73% (42,000 bets)


    The Trends. Edge: Saints.
  • Lions are 17-31 ATS against losing teams the previous 47 instances.
  • Saints are 36-21 ATS as a home favorite since 2007.
  • Saints are 15-4 ATS in night home games in the Drew Brees era.
  • Opening Line: Saints -3.
  • Opening Total: 50.5.
  • Weather: Dome.


    Week 15 NFL Pick: Lions 26, Saints 23
    Lions +3 (0 Units) -- Correct; $0
    Under 51.5 (0 Units) -- Incorrect; $0
    Lions 35, Saints 27



    Week 15 NFL Picks - Early Games
    Tampa Bay at St. Louis, New York Jets at Dallas, Chicago at Minnesota, Atlanta at Jacksonville, Houston at Indianapolis, Carolina at New York Giants, Tennessee at New England, Buffalo at Washington, Kansas City at Baltimore


    Prop/Teaser/Parlay Picks
    A list of some of my favorite team/player prop picks this week
    (Offense & defensive ROY picks to be counted whenever winners are announced.) Picks carried over on a week-to-week basis will be in black.


  • Teaser: Redskins +8.5, Dolphins +7.5 (1 Unit) -- Incorrect; -$110

    We're getting both of these teams through two key numbers, three and seven.


    LOADING COMMENTS...



    NFL Picks - Jan. 16


    2021 NFL Mock Draft - Jan. 13


    Fantasy Football Rankings - Jan. 11


    2022 NFL Mock Draft - Nov. 15


    NFL Power Rankings - Nov. 14


    2020 College Football Recruiting Rankings - April 14


    2020 NBA Mock Draft - Sept. 27




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    My Team-by-Team ATS Record
    This section shows how well I do when picking each team this year. The purpose is to see how well I read each team. Pushes are not displayed. Winning/losing streak in parentheses.

    Cowboys: 11-5 (2014-19: 47-50)
    Bears: 6-11 (2014-19: 45-48)
    Bucs: 7-9 (2014-19: 44-45)
    49ers: 8-8 (2014-19: 53-44)
    Eagles: 8-8 (2014-19: 55-46)
    Lions: 9-6 (2014-19: 53-42)
    Falcons: 9-7 (2014-19: 55-45)
    Cardinals: 10-6 (2014-19: 45-50)
    Giants: 3-13 (2014-19: 52-41)
    Packers: 12-4 (2014-19: 54-46)
    Panthers: 13-3 (2014-19: 47-52)
    Rams: 5-12 (2014-19: 53-41)
    Redskins: 7-8 (2014-19: 47-48)
    Vikings: 9-7 (2014-19: 51-45)
    Saints: 7-10 (2014-19: 49-50)
    Seahawks: 8-9 (2014-19: 43-56)
    Bills: 10-7 (2014-19: 52-42)
    Bengals: 9-5 (2014-19: 42-52)
    Colts: 8-7 (2014-19: 50-45)
    Broncos: 9-7 (2014-19: 45-48)
    Dolphins: 12-4 (2014-19: 47-46)
    Browns: 7-9 (2014-19: 46-44)
    Jaguars: 4-11 (2014-19: 41-55)
    Chargers: 8-6 (2014-19: 46-49)
    Jets: 8-8 (2014-19: 50-40)
    Ravens: 5-11 (2014-19: 48-47)
    Texans: 10-5 (2014-19: 48-47)
    Chiefs: 12-4 (2014-19: 56-50)
    Patriots: 6-10 (2014-19: 55-53)
    Steelers: 7-10 (2014-19: 56-43)
    Titans: 10-7 (2014-19: 49-47)
    Raiders: 7-9 (2014-19: 43-52)
    Divisional: 43-47 (2011-19: 405-394)
    2x Game Edge: 63-60 (2011-19: 213-210)
    2x Motivation Edge: 45-30 (2011-19: 347-288)
    2x Spread Edge: 42-33 (2011-19: 61-55)
    2x Vegas Edge: 25-22 (2011-19: 320-335)
    2x Trend Edge: 18-13 (2011-19: 250-228)
    Double Edge: 27-21 (2011-19: 122-107)
    Triple Edge: 5-4 (2011-19: 21-18)

    2003 Preseason: 3 | 4 | 5
    2003 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 20 | XXXVIII
    2004 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
    2004 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XXXIX
    2005 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
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    2006 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
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    2011 Preseason: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 |
    2011 Season: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | XLVI |
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