Week 12 crashed us back to even, with the Lazy Line going 0-2 and betting units going 0-3. For the past 3 years, the playoffs and Super Bowl have been the profit zone for the Lazy Line, and it might end up that way again.

More bad news. I’ll be closing down the website indefinitely after this week.

The good news: I’m going out with a bang, abandoning my usual “best bet” approach for the NFL and firing a load of quality buckshot. Recent research pointed me to the great success high-powered offenses experienced in the past 2 years in terms of covering the spread.

Last week that trend continued: teams that were clearly better on offense than their opponents went 8-4-1 ATS.

My season total for win/losses vs. the spread is 10-9-2.

In terms of betting units, my record stands at 13-12-2, or +1 units. Assuming $100 units, I’m down $20 for the season.

I’ll list 8 games to bet and offer a synopsis of the two games I like best. I suggest 2-unit wager for my top two selections. Here are the six single-unit selections for Week 13:

  • Jags +3.5 at Broncos. Backup QB Paxton starts for the Broncos. He’s very tall but not very good. Only one offense is capable of scoring points in Denver this week, and it ain’t the Broncos.
  • Falcons -5.5 hosting KC. The Chiefs don’t score on offense, and I doubt their defense can match Matt Ryan’s output.
  • Packers -6 hosting Texans. Reports of Aaron Rodgers’ demise proved to be premature. Reports of Osweiler’s “demise” were right on target.
  • Pats -13.5 hosting Rams. Painful line, but the Brady Revenge Tour rolls on despite injuries.
  • Giants +6.5 at Steelers. One offense here has overperformed all year, and one has underperformed. Take the overperforming Giants and the generous points.
  • Colts -1.5 at the Jets. Andrew Luck vs. blindfolded QB. Somehow a point and a half doesn’t seem like a wide-enough spread. I think the Colts might outscore their hosts.

NFL Week 13 Lazy Line Prime Bets
Panthers at Seahawks –7.0
Lazy Line: Seahawks –10

I underestimated the difficulty of the scenario in Tampa Bay last week. The Seahawks hit the road starting their backup center and missing two key defenders: DL Michael Bennett and S Earl Thomas. They were also making their 2nd East Coast road trip in two weeks and coming off an emotional thriller of a revenge win vs. the Patriots. Flat? Undermanned? Probably.

This week the Seahawks return home and get Bennett back. And they’ll be fired up after the loss to the Bucs.

The Panthers travel cross-country after suffering a playoff-eliminating loss. And like the Seahawks they arrive on the other side of the slab emotionally drained and without key defenders in the starting lineup.

Bet the Seahawks giving 7 for 2 units.

Washington at Arizona –2.5
Lazy Line: Washington “pick ’em”

The Cardinals will use nothing more than a blocking sled to protect QB Carson Palmer this week. It saves coach Arians the time and trouble of coordinating the 5 offensive linemen they signed from Overeaters Anonymous.

With that extra time, Arians might be able to teach WR John Brown how to play NFL football again. He’ll need Brown to catch a football or two with Washington CB Josh Norman shutting out Larry Fitzgerald on about 50% of the passing downs.

What a mess!

Meanwhile coach Gruden’s team continues to be sneaky good and his QB, Kirk Cousins, continues to fly under the radar despite posting top 5 stats for the past two years. Consider also that the Washington pass rush, one of the league’s best, gets to tee off on an immobile, unprotected, aging QB with only one decent receiver to throw to.

Bet the Redskins for 2 units to stay within 2.5 points of a punchless home team.

Roger LeBlanc