Las Vegas market report

This is normally the spot reserved for our weekly college football betting primer, but unless you guys are looking for a breakdown of Friday night’s highly anticipated Tennessee-Chattanooga at New Hampshire matchup, the college card is a bit thin this week to warrant a full-on breakdown. So from now through the Super Bowl, we’ll dedicate Wednesdays to our NFL Las Vegas market report, with the college football primer returning just before the start of bowl season.

2014 SNAPSHOT

Home teams: 104-100-4 (.509)
Favorites: 100-104-4 (.490)
Home favorites: 70-70-2 (.500)
Home dogs: 34-30-2 (.531)
Overs: 104-103 (.502)

New York Jets (2-11, 0-6 road) at Tennessee Titans (2-11, 1-5 home)

When: Sunday, 4:05pm ET
Open: Tennessee -2
Current: New York -1.5

New York in 2014: 3-9-1 ATS
Tennessee in 2014: 3-9-1 ATS

Geno SmithGeno Smith and the Jets are laying points on the road?

Analysis: What does it say about the Tennessee Titans when a lousy, two-win New York Jets team that is 1-4-1 ATS in away games this season travels to Nashville as a 1.5-point road favorite? Embarrassing, to say the least, but the key to this 3.5-point line move has to do with the potentially season-ending shoulder injury sustained by Tennessee quarterback Zach Mettenberger, as well as the fact that the Titans have dropped seven straight contests, the last three of which have come by an average of 24.0 points per matchup. While the Jets are bad in virtually every phase of the game, the Titans are just 4-15-1 ATS over their last 20 games overall and an astounding 1-10-1 ATS over their last 12 home contests. The Jets may stink, but this is still a mildly competitive club that has dropped its last two outings by a combined nine points.

Notable trends: The Jets are 3-8-1 ATS over their last 12 games against teams with a losing record while the Titans are 7-18-1 over their last 26 games played in the month of December.

Pittsburgh Steelers (8-5, 4-3 road) at Atlanta Falcons (5-8, 3-3 home)

When: Sunday, 1:00pm ET
Open: PK
Current: Pittsburgh -2.5

Pittsburgh in 2014: 6-7 ATS
Atlanta in 2014: 6-7 ATS

Analysis: The Falcons are operating on a short week here having played on Monday night at Green Bay, but the real concern is the availability of superstar wide receiver Julio Jones (hip) who was injured late in Week 14 after torching the Green Bay secondary for a career-high 259 receiving yards and one touchdown on 11 receptions. Atlanta has virtually no running game to speak of (23rd in NFL), so the absence of Jones would deal a serious blow to Matt Ryan and a Falcons offense that is backed up by the worst defense in the National Football League (410.8 yds/gm). However, it’s imperative bettors note that this is a non-conference game for the Steelers that is taking place one week before a two-game home stand that will feature matchups with playoff contenders Kansas City and Cincinnati. It’s won’t be easy to lay points on an inconsistent Pittsburgh club that is just 2-5 ATS over its last seven games following a win.

Notable trends: The Steelers are 5-12 ATS over their last 17 games following a win of more than 14 points while the Falcons are 5-1 ATS over their last six games played in the month of December.

San Francisco 49ers (7-6, 4-3 road) at Seattle Seahawks (9-4, 5-1 home)

When: Sunday, 4:25pm ET
Open: Seattle -7.5
Current: Seattle -9.5

San Francisco in 2014: 6-7 ATS
Seattle in 2014: 7-6 ATS

Russell WilsonWilson and the Seahawks have owned the 49ers as of late.

Analysis: What was just recently considered to be the best rivalry in football has the potential to turn into a bloodbath Sunday afternoon as two teams heading in completely opposite directions square off at CenturyLink Field. With quarterback Colin Kaepernick in the midst of a horrific regression and head coach Jim Harbaugh likely headed to another team at the conclusion of the regular season, the 49ers are spiraling out of control at an alarming rate after getting blown out at home by this same Seahawks team on Thanksgiving before laying an egg against the 2-11 Raiders in Oakland last Sunday. Meanwhile, the Seahawks are peaking at just the right time, with six wins over their last seven contests, the last three of which have come by an average of 14.0 points per game. This Seattle front four should have its way with a San Francisco offensive line that is in shambles at the moment. Also note that the 49ers are 0-6 ATS over their last six meetings with the Seahawks and 1-5 ATS in their last six trips to Seattle.

Notable trends: The 49ers are 1-4 ATS over their last five games against teams with a winning record while the Seahawks are 20-7 ATS over their last 27 games against teams with a winning record.

Arizona Cardinals (10-3, 3-3 road) at St. Louis Rams (6-7, 3-3 home)

When: Thursday, 8:25pm ET
Open: St. Louis -3
Current: St. Louis -4.5

Arizona in 2014: 9-4 ATS
St. Louis in 2014: 7-6 ATS

Analysis: This is one of the most significant moves of the week as a 10-win Arizona team is traveling to St. Louis to play a six-win Rams team that is laying more than the customary three points for home field advantage. In fact, this game opened on the key number of three, but was hit early in the Rams’ favor, which should be sounding off the alarms to all who are in the vicinity. As to the reason for the move? For starters, the Cardinals have dropped two of their last three outings, barely got by Kansas City at home last Sunday and are averaging an anemic 12.6 points per game during that stretch. That’s largely due to the fact that quarterback Drew Stanton is completing only 54.5 percent of his passes on the season with just two touchdowns and three interceptions over his last three outings. Additionally, go back to the last time these two teams got together on November 9 and look at the box score. Despite a final of 31-14 in Arizona’s favor, St. Louis was trailing only 17-14 with just under eight minutes to play before a late meltdown paved the way for a Cardinals cover. As for St. Louis, note that the Rams have won four of their last six matchups, have pitched two consecutive shutouts (Oakland, at Washington) and have covered the number in four straight games.

Notable trends: The Cardinals are 0-4 ATS over their last four Thursday games while St. Louis is 1-4 ATS over their last five Thursday games.

Minnesota Vikings (6-7, 2-4 road) at Detroit Lions (9-4, 6-1 home)

When: Sunday, 1:25pm ET
Open: Detroit -7
Current: Detroit -8

Minnesota in 2014: 8-5 ATS
Detroit in 2014: 7-6 ATS

Calvin J
ohnsonCalvin Johnson and the Lions have smoked the competition over the last two weeks.

Analysis: Outside of Green Bay at Buffalo, this game has a really good chance of being the most heavily teased matchup of the week (Detroit from -8 to -2). The early money has come in on the Lions and pushed this line off the key number of 7 to -8, despite the fact that Minnesota has won four of its last six games while covering the number in six of its last seven contests overall. Why? For starters, take a good look at the Vikings’ record and you’ll notice that even though the team has been surging as of late, Minnesota is 0-5 this season against teams with a winning record while being outscored 130-57 (losing by an average of 14.6 pts/gm). That tells us Mike Zimmer and company can handle the league’s inferior competition (like a home overtime win over the Jets last Sunday), but struggle when stepping up in class. On the other side of the field stands the Lions, who have emerged victorious in six of their last eight outings which features back-to-back ass-kickings of the Bears (34-17) and Buccaneers (34-17). In addition, take note the Detroit is 5-1 ATS over its last six encounters with NFC North opposition.

Notable trends: The Vikings are 9-1 ATS over their last ten games played in the month of December while the Lions are 5-2 ATS over their last seven home games.

Houston Texans (7-6, 4-3 road) at Indianapolis Colts (9-4, 5-2 home)

When: Sunday, 1:00pm ET
Open: Indianapolis -7
Current: Indianapolis -6.5

Houston in 2014: 8-5 ATS
Indianapolis in 2014: 9-4 ATS

Analysis: While it’s only a half-point adjustment, this game features a line move off the key number of seven in the Texans’ favor, so it’s absolutely worth noting. These two teams got together in Houston back on October 9 with Andrew Luck and the Colts rolling up 456 yards of offense, yet barely hanging on to claim a 33-28 victory. Perhaps the thinking here is that it will be tough for Indy to knock off a feisty Texans team twice in the same season, or maybe it has to do with Houston trotting out one of the league’s best running back/defense combos, which is a style conducive to tight football games. Either way, it won’t be easy to fade a Colts squad that is 15-2 ATS over their last 17 games following an against the spread loss and 20-6 ATS over their last 26 home dates. Note that Indy will likely be a very popular six-point teaser play in Week 15 (from -6.5 to -.5).

Notable trends: The favorite is 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings between these two teams, while the home team is 7-2 ATS in the last nine meetings between these two teams.

THE REST OF THE RUNDOWN

Green Bay Packers at Buffalo Bills: From GB -6 to GB -5
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers: From CAR -5.5 to CAR -4.5 (Newton)
Jacksonville Jaguars at Baltimore Ravens: From BAL -12.5 to BAL -13.5
Oakland Raiders at Kansas City Chiefs: From KC -9.5 to KC -10
Denver Broncos at San Diego Chargers: From DEN -3.5 to DEN -4
Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns: From PK to PK
Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots: From NE -7.5 to NE -7.5
Washington Redskins at New York Giants: From NYG -6.5 to NYG -6.5
Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles: From PHI -3.5 to PHI -3.5
New Orleans Saints at Chicago Bears: From NO -3 to NO -3

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