The business end of the regular season is here and the battle to reach the playoffs is well and truly on. We’ve seen a glut of injuries in the last week, which has impacted a number of teams and I think that makes it easier to pick some winners.
No team has a bye week remaining and for the first time in ages we have a full slate of teams to choose from. With that in mind I’ve crafted an acca that features four matches I think we can rely on to bring us home the bacon.
Rams @ Lions
Sunday, 2 December, 18:00
The Rams are fresh off a bye week. They’ve had time to regroup and rest before taking on a Lions side who got made to look like turkeys against the Bears on Thanksgiving.
Detroit have given up a whopping 26 points per game and won’t be able to live with the Rams’ offence.
Todd Gurley wasn’t at his brilliant best last time out, but he’s still managed 17 touchdowns this season. Combine that with QB Jared Goff, who is in with a shout at the MVP award, and you’re left with an incredibly dangerous attacking unit.
There is no doubt that the Rams will return to LA with the W, the only question is by how much. The Lions traded away receiver Golden Tate, saw fellow receiver Marvin Jones head to IR and have star running-back Kerryon Johnson questionable for this game. With all of that weighing heavily on the Lions, I fancy the Rams to win with the -8.5 handicap.
Ravens @ Falcons
Sunday, 2 December, 18:00
The Lamar Jackson era has truly begun in Baltimore. The quarterback is electric with his feet and since replacing the injured Joe Flacco he has led the Ravens to two victories. He’s great to watch but I’m not sure yet that he’s the finished article.
A quarterback who is the finished article? That would be Matt Ryan. The Falcons star hasn’t been heralded this season despite being hugely efficient in passing for over 334 yards per game and 24 passing TDs.
The rest of the Falcons haven’t been quite so impressive, especially Tevin Coleman, the running-back who has failed to capitalise on the injury to Devonta Freeman.
The Ravens have a better defence than the Falcons, but I think they’re due a loss and a trip to Atlanta will bring them back down to earth. I’m taking the Falcons with a -2.5 handicap to add a little more value, coming in at evens.
Chiefs @ Raiders
Sunday, 2 December, 21:05
Okay, I’ll save you the hassle of looking to the end of this section. I’m backing the Chiefs with a HUGE -14.0 handicap. I ordinarily wouldn’t recommend ever taking spreads that large in an NFL that is so unpredictable. Not only that but the Chiefs are on the road and will be playing in front of the Black Hole in Oakland.
However, this Raiders team are an absolute farce defensively. They’ve given up under 30 points per game after trading away Khalil Mack to the Bears. In their last three defeats they’ve lost by 17 points (Ravens), 14pts (Chargers) and 31pts (49ers). The Chiefs are vastly superior to those teams and have scored the second highest amount of points in the league behind the Saints.
So we know that the Chiefs will score a shedload. What about the Raiders? They’re the third lowest scorers in the entire NFL averaging just 17 points per game.
It’s a huge margin for the Chiefs to cover but when you look at the stats it’s simply a no-brainer. The Chiefs need to win and they’re facing a Raiders side hell-bent on finding new ways to embarrass themselves. I’m taking this at 5/6 all day long.
49ers @ Seahawks
Sunday, 2 December, 21:25
The Seahawks have been a bit of a surprise this season. When Richard Sherman left the Hawks, coincidentally for the 49ers, this offseason, it felt like an era was coming to an end. The ‘Legion of Boom’ that led Seattle to the Super Bowl on two occasions was falling apart.
Head coach Pete Carroll has done a great job to help Russell Wilson. He’s strengthened the offensive line and given greater protection to their star QB. Not only that, but the running-back group of Chris Carson, Mike Davis and Rashaad Penny has helped relieve the pressure around Wilson.
The 49ers defence give up the seventh most points per game in the league. Having watched them throughout the season it’s a surprise that they are only seventh on that list. They’re dreadful and with the release of linebacker Reuben Foster are now weaker on the field.
In the last three weeks the Seahawks have put up 30, 27 and 31 points against the Panthers, Packers and Rams respectively. None of those teams are known as defensive powerhouses, but they are all ranked higher than the 49ers.
Coming into Seattle and facing their exuberant crowd isn’t easy and although Sherman has a lot of experience at his former home, I can’t see the 49ers stopping the Hawks from putting up over 27.5 points to clinch this acca.
Recommended NFL ACCA
Back the Rams (-8.5) @ 4/5
Back the Falcons (-2.5) @ Evens
Back the Chiefs (-14.0) @ 5/6
Back the Seahawks Over 27.5 Points @ 4/5
ACCA Odds: 10.97/1
Let’s get it!
Sam Farley 2018/19 Tipping Record
Acca Legs: 16/44 (36%)
Accas: 0/11 (0%)
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