NFL Duo of Action: Steelers Vs Raiders & Lions Vs Cardinals
Pittsburgh will look to get back on track by dominating the lowly Oakland Raiders when they meet in a mismatch of longtime AFC residents. Josh Rosen and the rebuilding Arizona Cardinals will look to handle Matthew Stafford and the underachieving Detroit Lions in what amounts to a matchup for position in the 2019 NFL Draft.
If you’re looking for some expert betting value, then let’s get to my pair of picks on both Week 14 contests with our NFL Duo of Action.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Oakland Raiders
Pittsburgh has lost two straight and they let what looked like a sure win get away from them in their heartbreaking 33-30 home loss against the Chargers on Sunday night. Ben Roethlisberger passed for 281 yards with two touchdowns and one interception, but the Steelers couldn’t stop Philip Rivers and company when it mattered most. Now, the Steelers are just a half-game up on second place Baltimore in the AFC North.
“Don’t need to panic,” Roethlisberger said. “Don’t need to worry.”
The Steelers average 28.8 points per game (4th) while giving up 23.5 points per contest defensively (16th).
“There’s a quarter left of football,” Brown said. “We’ve got to continue to figure out a way to win and get ourselves to the dance.”
Oakland has lost two straight and seven of eight, but they didn’t exactly roll over, but they still managed to come up short in their 40-33 home loss against Kansas City this past weekend. The Raiders got 285 passing yards and three TD tosses from Derek Carr in the win but Oakland also gave up four TD passes to Chiefs blossoming superstar Patrick Mahomes. The Raiders average just 18.3 points per game (29th) while giving up a whopping 30.6 points per contest defensively (31st).
“It’s disappointing,” said veteran running back Doug Martin, who lost one of three fumbles for Oakland. “I don’t think it should have been that close. We should have been on top. The turnovers really, really hurt us.”
• Steelers are 4-10-1 ATS in their last 15 vs. AFC.
• Steelers are 4-10-1 ATS in their last 15 games on grass.
• Raiders are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games on grass.
• Raiders are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
• Raiders are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 vs. AFC.
• Raiders are 4-17 ATS in their last 21 games in Week 14.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are the easy pick to win this one in blowout fashion to cover the chalk against the lowly Raiders. Pittsburgh has gone 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 road games while Oakland has gone 4-9-2 ATS in their last 15 games against a team with a winning record. Last but not least, the Steelers are 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall while Oakland has gone a polar-opposite 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 home games. Pittsburgh is desperate and they’re loaded. The Steelers win and cover the chalk with room to spare!
Predicted Score: Pittsburgh Steelers 38 | Oakland Raiders 23
Detroit Lions at Arizona Cardinals
The Lions have lost two straight and five of their last six games coming into this contest including a humbling 30-16 smackdown loss against the Rams this past weekend as a 10.5-point home underdog no less. Quarterback Matthew Stafford passed for 245 yards with one touchdown and one interception, but the Lions could never come back from a 13-3 halftime deficit against the explosive Rams while getting outscored 14-3 in the game’s final quarter. Detroit averages 21.2 points per game (23rd) while giving up 26.3 points per contest defensively (26th).
“I’m extremely tired of losing,” center Graham Glasgow said.
Arizona picked up a fantastic 20-17 win over Green Bay that actually got Packers head coach Mike McCarthy fired to start the week. Zane Gonzalez kicked a 44-yard field goal with 1:41 remaining in regulation to lift the rebuilding Cards to the stunning win while Green Bay kicker Mason Crosby missed a potential game-tying attempt as time expired.
Rookie running back Chase Edmonds rushed for 53 yards and two touchdowns on just five carries to lead Arizona’s offense. The Cardinals improved to 2-3 over their last five while easily covering the spread as a 13.5-point road underdog despite my pick otherwise last week. Arizona averages just 14.6 points per game to rank dead last in scoring while allowing 25.8 points per contest defensively (23rd).
• Lions are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games on grass.
• Lions are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games following a double-digit loss at home.
• Lions are 8-19 ATS in their last 27 games in December.
• Cardinals are 4-1-1 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS win.
• Cardinals are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in December.
• Cardinals are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a losing road record.
• Cardinals are 4-12-2 ATS in their last 18 games following a straight up win.
I know Arizona is rebuilding, but I’m a bit surprised that Detroit is favored in this matchup seeing as how they have just one more win on the season than Arizona and have largely underachieved in head coach Matt Patricia’s first season.
The Lions are an awful 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games in Week 14 while the Cardinals have gone 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 games against their NFC counterparts and 5-2-1 ATS in their L/8 games against a team with a losing record.
With the home team in this rivalry going a near-perfect 12-1 ATS in their last 13 meetings and the Lions going 0-7 ATS in their last 7 meetings in Arizona, I say back the underdog Cards to hold it down at home in Week 14!
Predicted Score: Arizona Cardinals 24 | Detroit Lions 21
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