It’s odd that there is no Thursday night NFL game to kick off Week 13 of the 2020 season. That means bettors have a few extra days to prepare for the Sunday slate.
The week will conclude with a twist. There are two Monday games and a game on Tuesday night that help to accommodate Pittsburgh and Baltimore, both of which just played on Wednesday of last week.
Here’s a look at Week 13’s best bets.
Browns @ Titans (-6)
Cleveland has won four of its last five games and the return of RB Nick Chubb has helped them control the football – 32:35 average time of possession over the last month. Controlling the football can help deter a high-flying offense, something that the Titans have.
Tennessee, like Cleveland, likes to run the ball first. RB Derrick Henry leads the NFL in rushing with 1,257 yards and he has 12 touchdowns. Tennessee is fifth in the league in scoring (29.5 ppg) and put up 45 points last week on a pretty good Indianapolis Colts defense.
The Titans have put up 75 points in their last two games against the Colts and the equally stout Baltimore Ravens. Yes, Cleveland returns DE Myles Garrett who will try to get after Ryan Tannehill, but he’ll be negated by the running of Henry.
The Browns are 8-3 but they have exactly one win against a team with a winning record – Indianapolis. They struggle against good teams – Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Las Vegas – and will struggle against Tennessee on Sunday.
Jaguars @ Vikings OVER 52
The Vikings opened as a 9.5-point favorite over 1-10 Jacksonville, but the spread has crept up to -10 and even -10.5 at some sportsbooks. While the Vikings are playing well having won four of their last five games, covering a 10-point-plus spread will be a challenge. Even if the opponent is Jacksonville.
The Jags have arguably the worst defense in the NFL. They give up 29.5 points per game which ranks 30th in the league. The Jags have an issue at quarterback where veteran Mike Glennon will get his second start of the season. Glennon actually played okay in last week’s 27-25 loss to Cleveland.
Ironically, the Vikings also give up a ton of points, which is uncharacteristic of Mike Zimmer-coached teams. Minnesota allows 27.7 points a game. The Jags offense has scored at least 20 points in four of its last five games thanks to RB James Robinson who is third in the league in rushing.
With two porous defenses and two offenses that can put up points, look for the Jags-Vikings game to go Over the total.
Patriots @ Chargers (+1)
Underdogs have excelled this season against the spread notching a 96-76-2 record. The Chargers opened this Sunday’s game with the Patriots as a home favorite. That has changed as most books now have the Bolts as a one-point dog.
New England head coach Bill Belichick has a 19-5 record straight up against rookie quarterbacks. But, Justin Herbert isn’t just any rookie quarterback. He has excelled at home where the Chargers play Sunday.
Herbert has completed 69 percent of his passes at home, has a quarterback rating of 103.6, and has thrown 10 touchdowns compared to just two picks at SoFi Stadium. He also has RB Austin Ekeler back from injury which will be enough to keep the Chargers in this one.