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Week 15 In Review – Bills Keep Coming, Ravens Under The Radar & Flacco For CPOY

Things are starting to become clear in the NFL after Week 15, but the South division in both conferences is still up for grabs while Brock Purdy may not be locked in as the $1.50 favourite to win Most Valuable Player.

Bills Keep Coming

The Dallas Cowboys entered Week 15 as one of the hottest teams in the NFL. Fresh off a big win over the Philadelphia Eagles and with Dak Prescott in the MVP conversation, talk started to build around their Super Bowl LVIII credentials.

They were embarrassed here, though. There are genuine concerns for the rush defence moving forward, too.

The Buffalo Bills thrashed the Cowboys 31-10 while Josh Allen completed only seven passes. The 94 passing yards on the day is Allen’s lowest number since his rookie season. James Cook, who hadn’t cracked 100 yards all season, found 179 yards on the ground and a touchdown.

Cook finished this one with a whopping 227 scrimmage yards. The game was over by the third quarter as Buffalo raced out to a 31-3 lead.

The AFC East title race isn’t over. While the Dolphins ($1.36) are two games ahead of the Bills ($3), they face the Cowboys and Ravens in the coming weeks while Buffalo plays out a far friendlier schedule against the Chargers and Patriots. It’s worth noting that the Bills are an NFL-best 16-2 in December games since 2020.

As it stands, the New York Times Playoff Projections has Buffalo at 71% to make the playoffs.

The Bills are on a tear and the Dolphins haven’t performed particularly well against the better teams in the NFL. If the Football God’s are switched on, the AFC East race all comes together when the Dolphins and Bills meet in Week 18.

Ravens Keep Flying Under The Radar

The Miami Dolphins’ offence, the lack of offence from the Kansas City Chiefs, and the roller coaster Buffalo Bills have taken some of the shine away from the Baltimore Ravens season.

It’s no secret that they are a good football team. Lamar Jackson is a premier quarterback and on the second line of betting to win the Most Valuable Player award at $5 (in from $8.50 last week). They can only fly so low under the radar. Still, they’re 11-3 and among the favourites for the No.1 seed in the AFC and don’t seem to be spoken about as a genuine Super Bowl LVIII contender.

All of the talk before the season started centred around the new-look offence. Baltimore wanted to change things up and use the ball in the air more than they had done in previous seasons. It’s been a work in progress and inconsistent at times but, for the most part, Jackson and the Ravens offense have succeeded in becoming more versatile.

But it’s the defensive end that is most appealing when it comes to their Super Bowl prospects. In beating the Jacksonville Jaguars 23-7 this week, the Ravens held their opponent to seven points or less for the ninth time this season. Only the San Francisco 49ers concede less than their 16.8 points per game. Baltimore allows only 284.4 yards per game and has given up an NFL-low 19 touchdowns this season.

They’re a beast without the ball and capable of anything with it. It’s about time we started to push them up there with the Super Bowl LVIII contenders at $6. We’re going to learn how serious the Ravens are with the 49ers and Miami Dolphins to come over the next fortnight.

Browns win again

The Joe Flacco story continues.

Sure, he threw three picks, but you always get those games with Flacco even at his best. But he found 374 yards around those interceptions and guided the Cleveland Browns to an improbable comeback win.

Down ten points in the 4th quarter with Flacco looking his age, the veteran quarterback caught fire. He connected with Amari Cooper and David Njoku to move the Browns up the field and to a 20-17 win.

Just like that, the Browns are 9-5 and on the cusp of the post-season.

A win next week as $2.15 and +2.5 underdogs over the Houston Texans and they will be all but locked into a playoff spot.

The Browns defence has impressed all season. They kept the team in games as quarterbacks moved in and out of the lineup. But with Flacco looked in for the rest of the year and still capable of putting up big numbers, they’re looking more and more like a team that can cause a post-season upset.

If they get that far, Flacco will need to be considered as a Comeback Player of the Year contender…

Bet Now Joe Flacco to win Comeback Player of the Year @ $10

Jostling In The South

The race to win the NFL’s worst division is suddenly red hot.

The Atlanta Falcons were in poll position before losing to a terrible Carolina Panthers team this week. Meanwhile, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have won three on the bounce following their 34-20 win over the Green Bay Packers. They are now on top of the division alongside the New Orleans Saints.

Somewhat surprisingly, it’s the consistent and relatively responsible play of Baker Mayfield that has got them there.

Mayfield went 22-for-28 for 381 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions in the road victory. In doing so, he became the first player to record a perfect passer rating at Lambeau Field (min. five passing attempts).

The Buccaneers are now $1.67 favourites to win the NFC South ahead of the Saints at $2.70 and Falcons at $6.50.

It’s all happening in the AFC South, too.

The Jaguars should take the chocolates at $1.55 but can’t be entirely trusted. They throw up too many stinkers without warning to lock them into winning the division. Meanwhile, the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans both picked up wins to be 8-6 and $3.60 to finish out on top in the AFC South.

Lions Roar Again

The Detroit Lions played out their most complete game of the NFL season to smash the Denver Broncos 42-17 in Week 15.

Indoor Jared Goff struck again for the Lions quarterback to throw for 278 yards and five touchdowns – tying his career high. Sam LaPorta recorded a career-high of his own to get on the end of three of those Goff touchdown passes.

Should the Lions beat the Minnesota Vikings as $1.57 and -3.5 favourites in Week 16, they will clinch their first division title since 1993.

We’ve struggled to get on board with the Lions as Super Bowl LVIII contenders ($19) because of their issues in defence, but those issues weren’t present in this one. Every Broncos possession before halftime ended in either a fumble or a punt. The Lions kept the Broncos to only 287 total yards and 17 points.

It needs to be seen again to be believed, but if the Lions defence can put it together again next week, perhaps we can start to hype them up as post-season spoilers at the very least.

TOP 6 SUPER BOWL LVIII ODDS

TEAMCURRENT PRICELAST WEEK’S PRICE
San Francisco 49ers$3.30$3.50
Baltimore Ravens$6$7
Philadelphia Eagles$6.50$7
Kansas City Chiefs$7.50$8
Miami Dolphins$9$8
Dallas Cowboys$11$8.50
Bet Now NFL Futures

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