NFL Market Report: Week 14

Week 14 kicks off with a Cowboys-Bears matchup in the Windy City that looked a lot more enticing before the season began. Instead it pits a 6-6 Dallas team that’s dropped three of its last four outright vs. a 6-6 Bears side that’s 1-7 ATS in its last eight games — including three straight-up losses as favorites. The line on this game opened Dallas -3 and the first move was to 2.5 on the strength of some Bears +3 interest. But the number was back to 3 by Wednesday morning, which is where it settled. The total, which opened 43, first ticked down to 42.5 before crossing back through 43 and ultimately hitting 43.5.

• The featured game of the early window Sunday doubles as the game of the weekend in New Orleans between the 49ers and Saints. Both teams have been kind to bettors this season, with San Francisco 7-4-1 ATS and New Orleans 8-4. The line opened Saints -3, but early sharp money on the Niners gave way to an adjustment to 2.5 — an indicator the market views San Francisco as the superior team on a neutral field. The total has seen minimal action, with an opener of 44 moving up to 44.5.

• The other prominent early game features the red-hot Ravens visiting the Bills. Baltimore saw its run of five straight covers come to an end last week against the 49ers, but nonetheless improved to 8-0 straight up since the end of September. The Bills, who opened as 5.5-point home dogs, are fresh off a dominant November in which they went 4-0-1 ATS and 4-1 straight up. Early money laid the points with the Ravens to push the line to 6, and it’s since bounced back and forth between 6 and 5.5.

• The late window is headlined by a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game as the Chiefs battle the Patriots in Foxboro. Both the market and schedule appear to have caught up to the Pats, as they failed to cover three of their four November games while dropping two outright. New England opened as 3.5-point favorites, but that number didn’t last long, almost immediately moving to 3. It briefly touched 2.5 on Monday afternoon, which marked a resistance point for Pats money. It’s since settled back at 3. The total has held steady at 48.5.

• Sunday Night Football pits the Seahawks and Rams in a rematch of one of the best games of the year, a 30-29 Seattle win in which Greg Zuerlein hooked a potential game-winning 44-yard field goal. The Seahawks are one of the hottest teams in the NFL, having won five straight games overall while covering the past four. Seattle opened as 2.5-point road favorites in LA, and professional money immediately hit the Rams as home dogs, giving way to an initial adjustment to 1 on Tuesday afternoon. By Thursday, the game was down to a pickem. The under has also generated interest, with an opener of 48.5 touching as low as 47.

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