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Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2). (Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire)
January 5th, 2024
Playoff implications abound as Week 18 features a terrific slate of games, and we will back a trio of surging teams in this week’s teaser.
We’ve selected four games of interest Sunday for this week’s teaser play. Teasers adjust point spreads in the bettor’s favor, providing an opportunity to play multiple games in a single bet without being locked into the existing odds in a standard parlay.
We’ll play the six-point teaser option at +260 ($100 win returns $360 including investment).
Pittsburgh found its secret sauce when Mason Rudolph was inserted into the starting lineup, and the offense is finally carrying its weight. After throwing for 290 yards and a pair of TDs versus Cincinnati, Rudolph proved highly efficient completing 18 of 24 passes for 274 yards at Seattle last week, and George Pickens (326 receiving yards and two TDs in last two games) and Najee Harris (200 rushing yards and three TDs) are finally able to make a serious impact. The Steelers have turned things around since a three-game slide, and it’s a favorable scenario against Baltimore’s backups as the Ravens have locked up the No. 1 seed. We like Pittsburgh straight up and will grab points in a teaser!
Detroit still has a shot at the No. 2 seed and is expected to play its starters. The Lions endured a rough stretch in late November/early December, losing two of three and squeaking by New Orleans, but they’ve turned things around in recent weeks, winning and covering two straight before limiting Dallas to 20 points on the road last week. Minnesota won’t have success against Detroit’s fifth-ranked run defense (Lions have allowed only 53.7 rushing yards per game over the last three weeks) and we lack faith in Nick Mullens. Detroit will head into the playoffs on a good note!
Be sure to be in your seats for a special pregame 2023 NFC North Division Championship recognition at 12:40pm Sunday @FordField! pic.twitter.com/HcpSbs3etN— Detroit Lions (@Lions) January 5, 2024
Be sure to be in your seats for a special pregame 2023 NFC North Division Championship recognition at 12:40pm Sunday @FordField! pic.twitter.com/HcpSbs3etN
New Orleans still has an outside chance to make the playoffs, and we expect a strong showing in the home finale. The Saints hit a skid in late November/early December, losing three straight games at a crucial time of the season, but they’ve emerged from the funk and have played well in the last three home games, nearly upending Detroit before trouncing Carolina and the New York Giants. We liked how the defense stepped up last week at Tampa Bay, throttling running back Rachaad White (only 42 yards rushing) in a dominant performance, and Atlanta will have to rely on the ground game given its awful quarterback situation (starter Taylor Heinicke is banged up and questionable). We will ride with the Saints!
A high-scoring team at home, Arizona has averaged 24 points as all seven home games have gone Over this season, and Kyler Murray and James Conner are playing their best football presently, leading the Cardinals to a 35-31 win at Philadelphia last week. Seattle is not playing at a high level defensively, allowing Pittsburgh to rush for 202 yards in a home loss last week, but the Seahawks can still bring it offensively, especially in this situation. In their last six away games in indoor venues, Seattle has averaged 36.6 points per game, scoring at least 31 points in every outing, and the Seahawks still have faint playoff hopes with a victory. The Over is the play!
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