NFL

NFL Week 13 Betting Picks

Gabriel Santiago
Gabriel Santiago@gps_onthemic
NFL Week 13 Betting Picks

It seems like just the other day that we were all anxiously awaiting preseason to start.

In a flash, NFL Week 13 is here. As the playoff picture further emerges, this week offers no fewer than three games between teams that have an authentic shot at making a deep playoff run (not including Thursday's clash between the Seattle Seahawks and Dallas Cowboys).

Most notably, the San Francisco 49ers will head back east for another try at the Philadelphia Eagles. Transparently, these are the top two teams in the conference; FanDuel Sportsbook has the Birds and Niners priced as co-favorites to win the NFC (+190 odds) heading into the looming matchup.

Flipping over to the AFC, the Denver Broncos will hit the road to put the NFL's longest active winning streak on the line versus a young and talented Houston Texans team. Admittedly, this was probably not a game we had circled on the calendar prior to the season.

From there, keep an eye on the Detroit Lions traveling down to NOLA; the New Orleans Saints are still tied for the NFC South lead.

No time to waste -- let's dive into the odds and lines for this Sunday, keeping the emphasis on the most valuable of the traditional betting markets.

All NFL odds via FanDuel Sportsbook. Lines may change after this article is published.

NFL Betting Picks (12/3/23)

Sunday's Full Slate

Remaining NFL Week 13 Matchups
Kickoff Time (ET)
Favorite
Los Angeles Chargers at New England Patriots1 p.m.LAC
Arizona Cardinals at Pittsburgh Steelers1 p.m.PIT
Denver Broncos at Houston Texans1 p.m.HOU
Detroit Lions at New Orleans Saints1 p.m.DET
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans1 p.m.IND
Atlanta Falcons at New York Jets1 p.m.ATL
Miami Dolphins at Washington Commanders1 p.m.MIA
View Full Table

Denver Broncos at Houston Texans

  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV: CBS
  • Spread: HOU -3.5 (+100)
  • Moneyline: DEN +142/HOU -168
  • Total: 47.5

As two of the hottest teams in the AFC, I am actually looking forward to the upcoming contest in H-town. Denver has done well to pony up recently, snapping off five consecutive wins (longest current streak) entering Week 13. For the Texans, they have also surged as of late, earning victories in four of their past six bids.

The Broncos' 2023 revival has largely been attributed to two main things: an improved Russell Wilson and a defense keeping opponents to 22 points or fewer (over the winning streak). Wilson, after showing career lows in many categories last year, is currently playing as precisely as ever. His 20:4 touchdowns-to-interception ratio is among the NFL's tops while his 1.3% INT rate is a personal best.

Across the field, the host Texans are led by their own dynamic quarterback in C.J. Stroud. Notably, Stroud has become a runaway for this season's Offensive Rookie of the Year award, as his odds to win OROY are labeled at -9000. The rook from Ohio State is second in the league in passing yardage (3,266) and third in yards per attempt (8.4).

Best Bet: Broncos +3.5 (-122)

Naturally, this game will feature more than quarterback play, but that is where the tone will be set. Likely, whichever signal-caller plays better will grab the victory here. From a scoring standpoint, both offenses fall into the middle tier, producing 22.4 PPG (DEN) and 23.5 PPG (HOU), respectively. However, Denver has done well to step up on the defensive side as of late.

On D, the Broncos have improved their pass rush over the five-game heater, showing 14 sacks through that span. The increased pressure has helped keep points off the board, as Denver has surrendered only 16.0 PPG since mid-October. Stroud has undoubtedly shown incredible poise and mobility in his rookie campaign, but he is still being sacked (13th-most) more frequently than 60% of current starting quarterbacks.

Considering Denver's recent improvements, I have no issues taking them against the spread (ATS) this week on the road. At FanDuel Sportsbook, the Broncos are getting a field goal with a hook. Russ is cooking again, and wide receiver Courtland Sutton (career-high eight TD) has also dazzled as of late -- give me Broncos ATS.

Detroit Lions at New Orleans Saints

  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV: FOX
  • Spread: DET -4.5
  • Moneyline: DET -205/NO +172
  • Total: 46.5 (-115/-105)

The upcoming showdown in the Big Easy could serve as an NFC playoff preview, as both the Lions and Saints stand in solid position to win their respective divisions.

Entering the weekend, Detroit has been the much more impressive side in 2023, but as tradition would have it, they are coming off a Thanksgiving loss to the Green Bay Packers. In regards to New Orleans, they have the benefit of playing in (arguably) the NFL's worst grouping, the NFC South.

So, what should we expect this Sunday at the Superdome?

In terms of total yardage, the Lions rank top 10 on offense and defense. However, Detroit tends to score often (26.7 PPG) while also liberally allowing points to opponents (23.5 PPG). Both of those clips have inflated for Motor City over the past three weeks.

The Saints are struggling to develop a consistent recipe for success. At 5-6 straight up (SU), they are technically tied for their divisional lead, but New Orleans has yet to win more than two consecutive games since quarterback Derek Carr arrived.

Best Bet: Over 46.5 (-115)

Earlier in the year, I was a major proponent of unders for Saints games, but trends come and go in this industry. Pertaining to this Superdome matchup with the Lions, I actually like the over against a combined total of 46.5 points.

Head coach Dan Campbell's bunch has been thoroughly impressive, especially on offense. Wily veteran Jared Goff (67.9% completion clip) has played clean football this year, orchestrating the NFL's seventh-best scoring unit. Detroit skill players Amon-Ra St. Brown, David Montgomery, Jahmyr Gibbs and Sam LaPorta offer high-end tenacity and athleticism.

Despite New Orleans' periodic woes on offense, Carr has a talented skill group of his own: Alvin Kamara, Chris Olave and Taysom Hill. We have seen them explode for as many as 38 points in a single contest this season, and I think they will operate confidently this weekend at home.

At numberFire, the game projections yield an estimated score of 28.71-22.28 in favor of Detroit, which presents a sum of 50.99. Against the set total of 46.5, that provides greater than 3.5 points of cushion. With all these athletes on a fast surface, I am quite comfortable going over in NOLA.

Cleveland Browns at Los Angeles Rams

  • Time: 4:25 p.m. ET
  • TV: FOX
  • Spread: LAR -3.5
  • Moneyline: CLE +150/LAR -178
  • Total: 40.5

In the afternoon window, the Cleveland Browns will head out west to take on the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium. Both sides here have shown mixed results through 12 weeks of action, but Cleveland is notably dealing with a quarterback carousel.

Starter Deshaun Watson (shoulder) has already been ruled out for the season while backup Dorian Thompson-Robinson suffered a concussion in last week's loss in the Mile High -- so now what? The Browns will likely start P.J. Walker at signal-caller in Inglewood, but veteran Joe Flacco was signed as interim QB2.

Los Angeles' NFC franchise sits under .500 at 5-6, but they have done well to win each of their past two games, defeating divisional rivals in the process. Matthew Stafford is still slinging the pigskin in Year 15, but can he get his side past an explosive Cleveland defense?

Best Bet: Rams -3.5 (-110)

Given the Browns' inconsistencies in recent weeks at the game's most important position, I like the Rams ATS at home. I understand the Los Angeles' defense is a long ways away from where it was when they won Super Bowl LVI, but all-world defensive tackle Aaron Donald is still there. Simply, I expect him to turn Cleveland's shuffling offensive situation into a nightmare.

Since Watson's season-ending injury, the Browns have been unable to score more than one touchdown in a single game. Traveling across the nation, I can't say that I expect Cleveland's scoring production to dramatically increase.

For the Rams, receivers Puka Nacua -- who would assuredly be this year's OROY if not for Stroud -- and Tutu Atwell have done well to replace Cooper Kupp's missing production. At home, I look toward the former two to help Staffy power the offense on Sunday afternoon.

numberFire's NFL game projections have this game pegged closely in the ATS market, showing an estimated score of 25.78-22.06 in favor of LAR. That gives the Rams a winning margin of 3.72 points, which is on the right side for my selection here. Frankly, I don't see it being as close -- I am laying the points with Los Angeles at home.


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.