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COVID absences impacting strains, totals

All through the 2021 season, a panel of Sportsnet’s NFL contributors will preview every week’s slate of video games from a playing perspective. Employees author/host Donnovan Bennett, employees writers Emily Sadler and Mike Johnston, plus fantasy writers Andy McNamara and Matt Marchese will choose one FAVOURITE, one UNDERDOG, one OVER, one UNDER, together with their private LOCK, as they try and beat the chances

Holy smokes, Week 15 isn’t messing round.

Rising COVID circumstances and an growing variety of gamers coming into well being and security protocols will undoubtedly influence this week’s outcomes. For instance, the Browns-Raiders line has been risky for days with Cleveland’s roster decimated by absences. Along with all of the participant information, a number of heavyweight matchups with playoff implications are additionally including to the chaos.

The week begins with a Thursday AFC West showdown between the Chiefs and Chargers that options the very best complete of the week. It’s a rematch of a Week 3 Chargers upset win. Kansas Metropolis started the 12 months simply 2-7 in opposition to the unfold however has rewarded bettors with 4 consecutive covers. Can that development proceed?

Different notable matchups embody: Patriots-Colts, Bengals-Broncos, Titans-Steelers, Packers-Ravens and this week’s Bathroom Bowl between the Texans and a Jaguars workforce lastly rid of City Meyer.

Under are the Week 15 picks.

Donnovan Bennett, employees author/host
2021 file: 33-23-0
Final week: 3-1-0
Locks: 8-6-0

🏈 Bengals at Broncos OVER 44
🏈 Patriots at Colts UNDER 45.5
🏈 Packers (-4.5) at Ravens
🔒 Lions (+13.5) vs. Cardinals

You possibly can crown them if you wish to, however the Arizona Cardinals aren’t who we thought they had been. The Cardinals are simply 2-2 of their final 4 video games after beginning the season 8-1. They’ve solely averaged 22.3 factors per recreation of their final 4 after averaging 30.8 factors per recreation of their first 9. Plus, DeAndre Hopkins is anticipated to overlook the common season as a result of a knee harm. They need to not be thought of double digit favourites over anyone.

Emily Sadler, employees author
2021 file: 30-25-1
Final week: 2-2-0
Locks: 7-7-0

🏈 Chiefs at Chargers OVER 52
🏈 Patriots at Colts UNDER 45.5
🏈 Falcons (+9) at 49ers
🔒 Jaguars (-3) at Texans

As we speak is the primary day of the remainder of Trevor Lawrence’s life, and I see no different solution to mark the event than to take a deep, cleaning breath after which glide onto the sector this Sunday and ship Jacksonville its first victory of the post-City Meyer period. Sports activities regulation dictates new coach = carry on the win! (Hey, I don’t make the principles!) And on this case, it doesn’t matter that their playoff hopes are long-ago spoiled, or that their opponent is much more misplaced than they’re, sitting proper beside them within the league’s basement… have fun this one prefer it’s the Tremendous Bowl.

Mike Johnston, employees author
2021 file: 26-30-0
Final week: 2-2-0
Locks: 7-7-0

🏈 Titans at Steelers OVER 41.5
🏈 Jets at Dolphins UNDER 42
🏈 Saints (+11) at Buccaneers
🔒 Colts (-2) vs. Patriots

Are the Pats the most popular workforce within the NFL? Sure. Has their defence been taking part in off the charts, thus making me nervous Carson Wentz will inevitably quit a number of brutal turnovers on Saturday? Completely. Am I oddly cussed about this Colts workforce being a darkish horse Tremendous Bowl contender? You wager I’m! That’s why I’m going with the Colts to select up a large residence win that turns the AFC on its head.

Andy McNamara, analyst/fantasy sports activities author
2021 file: 34-21-0
Final week: 3-1-0
Locks: 6-8-0

🏈 Titans at Steelers OVER 41.5
🏈 Patriots at Colts UNDER 45.5
🏈 Chargers (+3) vs. Chiefs
🔒 Cowboys (-10.5) at Giants

Dallas has damaged out of their mini rut and received their previous two video games. The Giants lose by a median of 13.2 factors and a kind of 9 defeats got here to the Cowboys 44-20 again in October. Oh, and New York quarterback Daniel Jones remains to be not cleared to play. That is as straightforward a LOCK of the week because it will get, individuals.

Matt Marchese, radio host/producer/fantasy soccer author
2021 file: 23-33-0
Final week: 2-2-0
Locks: 6-8-0

🏈 Titans at Steelers OVER 41.5
🏈 Washington at Eagles UNDER 44.5
🏈 Raiders (+3) at Browns
🔒 Rams (-4.5) vs. Seahawks

The Rams are coming off a large win over the Cardinals and that development will proceed in opposition to one other divisional rival within the Seahawks. Los Angeles is 7-2 of their final 9 residence conferences in opposition to the unfold versus the Seahawks who’re additionally 1-3 of their final 4 away video games ATS this season.

BONUS STAT: The Raiders are 3-0 of their final three in opposition to the unfold versus Cleveland, who in case you haven’t heard, may be very shorthanded this weekend.

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