NFL unders continued to cash this weekend as nine of 14 games in Week 11 went under the total. Unders are 93-69 (57%) on the season and 19-9 over the past two weeks. Sportsbooks adjusted totals to their lowest mark on the season, and it wasn't enough as scoring continued to dip. Whether it's Seattle losing its QB, Tennessee losing its running back, or Las Vegas losing its head coach — these changes have drastically impacted these teams' ability to score.
There are also teams simply changing their identities, and defenses are catching up to what they saw earlier in the season. The NFL is a five-month chess match that makes it challenging for sports bettors to determine how much predictive value each week's results hold. We are 4-2 in the last six on our early unders while hitting last week on the Lions. There is no reason to stop a good thing, so I'm zeroing in on Detroit again as it faces one of the worst offenses in the NFL. Let's make it a sweep this holiday week.
The NFL sure knows how to line them up. Everyone loves a good turkey day nap, just not so early. These offenses will put tryptophan to shame as Thanksgiving day kicks off with a classic snoozer. The Lions' continued their streak of failing to reach 20 points for the ninth time on Sunday, and the Bears' Justin Fields left Sunday's loss to the Ravens due to injury. It's hard to figure out where the offense is going to come from with both these teams likely starting backup quarterbacks.
When the total has closed above 40, these teams are a combined 15-1 to the under since Week 2 while both are averaging under 17 points per game on the season. If the argument is that the offenses will find success against each other's subpar defenses, there isn't much evidence of that happening. Baltimore's defense came into Sunday ranked 31st in yards per play allowed (6.2) and held Chicago to 13 points. The Bears got 6.2 yards per play on the Ravens, but it didn't produce points due to their 15% third-down conversion rate. Bad offenses stop themselves.
In Week 4, these two teams combined for 38 points in a 24-14 Chicago win where most of Detroit's scoring occurred in garbage time after Chicago built a 21-point lead. It's the same story with these two teams as neither has shown great improvement since their first meeting. I don't see how this one plays out any differently. Take the under and prop up your pillow. You should wake up a little bit wealthier.
The Falcons' offensive failures are the NFL's best-kept secret. After getting shut out in front of a national audience, everyone chalks it up to having to play against Bill Belichick. The Falcons' five yards per play are worse than all but a handful of teams, and they have managed only three points the past two weeks. Getting over 48 with these two teams still seems like a big stretch, even if Atlanta's Calvin Ridley returns. In the last four weeks, both teams averaged less than 11 points per game.
The Jaguars want to run the ball and should have success against Atlanta. Urban Meyer has built a top-10 rushing attack, and the Falcons are bottom 10 defending it. If Jacksonville is having success on the ground, he will keep pounding the rock to shorten the game and limit Atlanta's possessions. The Jaguars have found a formula that gives them a chance to win. They are 2-3 in their last five and 5-0 to the under. The average total during that span is 46.7 and not one of their combined scores surpassed 40 in regulation. I'm willing to bet the market hasn't adjusted enough here creating an opportunity for us to cash in on a Jags under at least one more week.