The calendar has turned to December, which means the NFL regular season is nearing its end. That means every game means more as teams fight for postseason berths. There are also teams that might not be in the playoff chase but are fighting for their jobs a season from now.
In the AFC, it’s a tight race in most divisions. With more playoff spots available, more teams have a shot at the postseason. Once again, this week should be exciting, with plenty of online betting opportunities throughout the schedule.
Let’s take a look at three of the AFC underdogs you should consider.
Indianapolis Colts vs Houston Texans (+3)
The Texans are likely out of the race in the AFC South, and possibly the postseason, but they’ve been playing much better since Bill O’Brien was fired. Houston was 0-4 when it decided to part ways with O’Brien, but it is 4-3 since including two straight victories.
The Texans did take a hit this week with NFL news of the suspension of leading receiver Will Fuller V for the rest of the season for a PED violation. That means more of the offensive burden will be on quarterback Deshaun Watson against a tough Indianapolis defense. The Texans’ defense also took a hit as DB Bradley Roby was also suspended for the rest of the season by the NFL.
But, Watson is one of the best at making things happen for himself and his teammates, and he should be able to keep the Texans in this one. Watson averaged 303 yards passing in two games against the Colts a season ago when the two teams split their annual matchups, with the Texans winning at home.
Indianapolis has lost two of its last four and only won by three in overtime in one of those victories. While the Texans may not be able to pull this one out, they’ll make it close.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+9.5) vs Minnesota Vikings
The Jaguars have lost 10 straight games, so it’s not surprising they’re almost a 10-point underdog on the road. But, a closer look at Jacksonville’s results shows that it might be losing, but it’s competitive.
Just last weekend, Jacksonville had a shot to knock off Cleveland, falling by two points. Three games ago, the Jaguars went to Green Bay and gave the Packers all they could handle before falling by four points. So taking on the Vikings with 9.5 points in their pocket is a pretty good situation for Jaguars bettors when they’re making their NFL picks.
Minnesota lost at home to Dallas two games ago, then had to rally to beat Carolina at home last week. The Vikings don’t exactly blow out the competition, even at home. Minnesota will win this game, but Jacksonville won’t make it easy.
Cleveland Browns (+6) vs Tennessee Titans
Speaking of the Browns, they’ve won three straight and four of their last five to put themselves squarely in the postseason chase. Cleveland has a ground attack that will make it hard for any team to shut it down.
As long as Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt can pick up yards running the ball, the Browns won’t have to put the game in Baker Mayfield’s hands. Mayfield has struggled to be productive which is why Cleveland relies on its ground attack. Tennessee has its own ground attack in the form of Derrick Henry, who leads the NFL with 1,257 yards. Cleveland gets a key player back in defensive end Myles Garrett, who could help against Henry as well as put pressure on Ryan Tannehill when Tennessee goes to the air. This is another game that should be closer than the NFL odds are making it out to be.