Ross Williams has been in excellent form throughout November – our NFL expert previews Monday night's action here.
2pts Brian Robinson (Commanders) to score a touchdown at 11/10 (Sky Bet, BetVictor)
2pts Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers Over 32.5 Total Match Points at 5/6 (General)
2pts San Francisco 49ers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers Over 42.5 Total Match Points at evens (General)
1pt Travis Kelce (Chiefs) & A.J. Brown (Eagles) both to score a touchdown at 3/1 (Sky Bet)
The Super Bowl rematch, with Kansas City coming off a bye week? You’re crazy if you don’t think Travis Kelce is about to see a lot of the ball on Monday night – and that’s without even considering the Chiefs’ temptation to lean into the narrative around the tight end’s absurdly-famous girlfriend.
One half of pop culture’s most talked-about power couple was crucial to the Chiefs’ success in Super Bowl LVII, picking up 81 yards and a touchdown from six receptions. It was trademark Kelce and against a defence that has struggled a little against the tight end position in recent weeks, #87 finding the endzone once again on Monday looks a decent bet.
After posting a TE shutout against Miami, both the Cowboys and Commanders found joy against the usually-sturdy Eagles defence via their tight ends. Over the two-week period, Philly shipped 152 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Not exactly ideal preparation for facing arguably the greatest pass-catching tight end of all time.
Kelce should find success on Monday, and he shouldn’t be alone.
Eagles receiver A.J. Brown also enjoyed a fruitful Super Bowl – posting 96 yards and a score – and he’s only improved from there.
Brown’s numbers are nothing short of silly this season, with Jalen Hurts finding his star man incredibly often. He enjoyed a six-game stretch earlier in the year where he posted at least 125 yards per game and in his last three outings, the receiver has scored four touchdowns.
The former Tennessee Titan finding the endzone looks likely in a game that looks set to be an offensive back-and-forth, so pairing him with Kelce is just about the most comfortable touchdown double you could wish for in a game of this magnitude. When in doubt, it usually pays to opt for the superstars.
The Washington Commanders look set to pick up a home-field victory this weekend, with a depleted and out-of-ideas New York Giants team – led by rookie stand-in quarterback Tommy DeVito – heading to town.
If the handicapper had been a little nicer to the Commanders this week, this section of the preview would probably be as short and sweet as that. However, the spread is set at nine points currently and, even for a team highly likely to pick up the victory, that’s a lot of points in the NFL. A two-score handicap always opens up the possibility of the favoured team placing the cue on the rack late on, and that veers me away from that particular selection.
Instead, there’s more value in the touchdown scorer market.
Although much of Washington’s offence has come via Sam Howell’s arm, the effectiveness of Brian Robinson is evident. The young running back has eight touchdowns through ten games this season and he’s coming off his best performance so far, which saw him rack up over 150 multi-purpose yards and a score.
In the Giants on Sunday, he faces a team that has conceded 16 rushing touchdowns already this season – the worst defensive record against the run in the entire NFL.
The door appears open for a second-straight big day for Robinson and any plus-money price for the Washington Commander to score looks to be excellent value.
The Steelers and Browns are far from free-scoring and both teams are most-famed for their defensive stoutness, but two 6-3 teams facing off with a total match points line of just 32.5 simply has to spark interest, regardless of circumstance.
It’s the lowest line of the week and it’s rare to ever see a number so low in the NFL, particularly between teams with winning records.
The injury to Deshaun Watson is a major factor, of course, but the former Houston Texan’s performances haven’t been up to the standard that was once expected of him, so the drop-off in Cleveland’s offensive effectiveness may not be as drastic as the market suggests.
The game will be an attritional grind, with little in the way of eye-catching aerial plays, but that doesn’t mean the two sides can’t move the ball up the field and into scoring position.
The Browns – despite the early-season loss of Nick Chubb – are still the #2 rushing offence in the league and the Steelers were incredibly productive on the ground in week ten, racking up 205 rushing yards in a hard-fought win over the Packers.
The Steelers and Browns combine for an average of more than 40 points per game this season, so hitting the 33-point mark is well within range. It won’t be easy, but it’s simply a line that can’t be ignored.
The San Francisco 49ers have scored at least 30 points in six of their nine games this season (coinciding with their six wins) and, following their bye week, the Niners seemed to have their mojo back when they faced and demolished the Jaguars.
Now back to something like full healthiness, a similarly impressive offensive showing from San Francisco can be expected and that brings the total match points line into play.
At 42.5, the line certainly isn’t excessive and if the 49ers can match their seasonal average of 28 points, the travelling Buccaneers will only need to put up 15 points to land the overs.
The Bucs are averaging 19.8 points per game and they’ve scored a combined 57 points over the last two games, with quarterback Baker Mayfield making a consistent habit of utilising Mike Evans and his ability to eat up the yards and find the endzone.
With so much high-powered offence on the field in this game, headlined by superstar Christian McCaffrey, points shouldn’t be too hard to come by at Levi’s Stadium and this feels like another line that falls just on the generous side.
Posted at 1710 GMT on 18/11/23
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