We’re all making an attempt to be like Jimmy Garoppolo. Look your finest, sustain a optimistic perspective and don’t make the actually huge mistake.

The 49ers quarterback has finished higher with the turnovers of late — a career-best three straight begins with out an interception — and is surrounded by the league’s finest set of playmakers, none extra harmful than the underused, underappreciated Deebo Samuel. Samuel had seven catches for 57 yards and three carries for 37 yards and a landing within the 38-10 win over the Cardinals in Mexico City on Monday evening. He ranks eighth within the NFL and first amongst large receivers with 8.7 yards after catch per reception.

The explosive Samuel may very well be one of many key gamers to observe down the stretch and one of many huge causes is as a result of defenses can’t key on him. They even have their palms full with Christian McCaffrey — 8.8 YAC/reception — and George Kittle (fifth amongst tight ends with 6.7 YAC/reception).

Our picks are additionally exhausting to key on. We had one other shedding week and whereas we stay assured, there actually is not any rational purpose to be. There are extra shut video games than ever this season, and we’ve persistently been on the improper aspect of them. Will our luck change? We had been 2-1-1 on finest bets and this week, we’re using with the 49ers over the Saints, the Ravens over the Jaguars and the Texans and Cardinals to hold tight towards the Dolphins and Chargers, respectively.

Last week: 5-7-2 towards the unfold.

Season document: 74-85-7 ATS (Plays of the week are 11-14-3)

All odds are from BetMGM and are locked when the choose was made. Click here for dwell odds.

GO DEEPER

NFL Week 12 expert roundtable: A busy Thanksgiving, Bengals-Titans and QBs in need of a win

We wish to trip the Lions with one other best-bet designation, however cornerback Jeff Okudah has a concussion and their two beginning guards haven’t practiced but this week both. They are embracing the national stage Thursday and the worth with the Lions the final three weeks has been their improved protection. The Lions rank 14th in defensive EPA per drive (0.08) and thirteenth in factors allowed per drive (1.9) since Week 9. They ranked final in each classes the primary eight weeks.

Aidan Hutchinson is tied for fourth amongst all rookie defenders and first amongst rookie defensive linemen in splash performs (19) and can be requested to chase down a hobbled Josh Allen. Over the primary eight weeks, Allen led the league in EPA/dropback when pressured (0.21) by a big margin. He is thirteenth in EPA/DB when pressured (-0.19) since Week 9. The Bills not named Allen are running the ball better, which additionally offers us pause.

The choose: Not a finest guess, however Lions +9.5

Player Props that Pop: We lastly have a full menu to work with, because of the Turkey Day video games. We’ve been on a roll recently with the few choices out there to us on Wednesdays (Aaron Rodgers was a straightforward below final week) and we begin off right here with Jared Goff over 245.5 yards.

The Cowboys are coming off a dominating efficiency in Minnesota whereas the Giants are really banged up. Plus, their run protection gained’t have a lot of a solution for Tony Pollard or Ezekiel Elliott, whereas their blitz-crazy methods feed proper into Dak Prescott’s mouth. He has accomplished 74 p.c of his passes with no turnovers when blitzed.

Since Prescott’s return in Week 7, the Cowboys rank first in factors per drive (3.05), fifth in EPA per drive (0.90), and sixth in play-to-play success charge (48.7%). Kellen Moore is hitting all the right buttons.

But … I’m going with the higher coach and with Saquon Barkley because the Giants search to avenge an earlier loss to the Cowboys. He’s had an MVP-type season earlier than final week and I feel he’ll shine within the highlight on Thursday towards a Cowboys protection that’s significantly better towards the move than the run.

The choose: Giants +10

PPP: Barkley dashing and receiving over 99.5 yards.

I do get personally vested on this stuff. It took me seven weeks (and 7 wins, lol) to recover from Kirk Cousins turtling up towards the Eagles and I backed the Vikings in a great spot as a house underdog to the Cowboys. They misplaced by 37 factors and Cowboys gamers had been saying that Cousins was visibly shook within the first quarter.

So, now what?

Since 1940, 284 groups have gained eight or extra of their first 10 video games. The Vikings (minus-3) are the one one with a destructive level differential via 10 video games (through Stathead).

The Patriots will be capable to get strain towards Cousins, and their run protection must also hold Dalvin Cook reasonably quiet. But I don’t have a lot confidence in Mac Jones or the Patriots offense and we’ll aspect with the house staff coming off an embarrassing loss. It can be a good measuring stick for coach Kevin O’Connell. While the Vikings have the NFL’s worst purple zone protection, (permitting TDs on 71.4 p.c of purple zone drives), the Patriots have the NFL’s second-worst purple zone offense (scoring TDs on 42.9 p.c) of purple zone drives.

The choose: Vikings -2.5

PPP: Mac Jones below 231.5 yards passing.

go-deeper

GO DEEPER

Why the pass rush will be key for the Patriots against the Vikings

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Can Kirk Cousins and the Vikings bounce again from final week’s blowout loss to the Cowboys? (Brace Hemmelgarn / USA Today)

You can’t put a lot inventory within the Bucs’ win over the Seahawks earlier than their bye week, because the Seahawks had been at an enormous drawback because of the begin time of the sport in Munich and outplayed the Bucs as soon as they wakened. But the Browns defense is a lot worse than it should be and the 3-7 staff is in a bizarre spot, with their season over however Deshaun Watson again from suspension subsequent week.

The Bucs have staggered all season, however the schedule is fairly simple from right here on out. They face three NFC South video games and a Christmas evening recreation at Arizona after this one, with the one actually robust video games being at San Francisco and residential towards the Bengals.

The choose: Buccaneers -3.5

The Bengals offensive line seemed good for as soon as in an enormous win over the Steelers final week and this can be one other formidable check for a unit that struggled the primary two months of the season. Even throughout their scorching streak, I haven’t been impressed with the Titans secondary and Joe Burrow must carry the water because the Titans are fairly good towards the run.

As we’ve famous, the Bengals run protection is significantly better with defensive sort out D.J. Reader again within the fold. In his first recreation again, the Bengals had an 84.4 p.c defensive success charge with him on the sector towards the Steelers, in comparison with 46.7 p.c with him off. A whopping 21.4 p.c of their runs with him on the sector didn’t advance previous the road of scrimmage.

We had the Titans over the Packers final week, and the inspiring Mike Vrabel is 9-5 general and ATS as a house underdog. But we’ll take the Bengals using some enhancements within the trenches … and wait, are they enjoying Ja’Marr Chase’s walk-on music?

The choose: Bengals -2.5

go-deeper

GO DEEPER

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys, 49ers enter conversation as serious Super Bowl contenders

This seems like a straightforward one on paper, and the purpose unfold has already been guess up by 4 factors in 4 days. The Dolphins had been blazing scorching, having gained 4 straight earlier than a bye week cooled their engines. After this recreation, they’ve three straight street video games towards the 49ers, Rams and Bills. So, there isn’t any means they aren’t trying previous the lowly Texans, who simply obtained pounded by the Commanders.

That loss price QB Davis Mills his beginning job, and it needed to be finished. The Texans rank thirty first in EPA/drive, thirtieth in factors per drive (1.45) and had been even unhealthy on the scripted stuff to start out the video games. Houston went three-and-out on 55 p.c of its first two possessions of video games — the best charge within the NFL.

We have total faith that new QB Kyle Allen and Dameon Pierce can lose by lower than 13 towards a hopefully flat Dolphins staff. The Texans protection has some potential younger playmakers they usually do play exhausting and have been extra aggressive (throw out final week) for Lovie Smith. Through 10 video games below David Culley final season, the Texans had some extent differential of minus-121 regardless of being plus-2 in turnover margin. This season via 10 video games, the Texans’ level differential is minus-71 regardless of being minus-2 in turnover margin.

The choose: Texans +13.5

Zach Wilson additionally obtained benched this week. He was not enjoying nicely and acted like a brat, which was the dealbreaker as a result of the Jets actually, actually weren’t too scorching on going with Mike White or Joe Flacco. They in all probability might have gained with Wilson this week because the Bears ought to sit QB Justin Fields and his separated shoulder. Fields performed via it final week however stopped working, which is like Liam Neeson stopping from making his three vigilante films a yr. Nothing is sensible anymore.

The Bears protection has been a lot worse since they traded away a bunch of fellows, and but this seems like a field-goal recreation. I feel Matt Eberflus is a fairly good coach and David Montgomery has an enormous day catching passes from Trevor Siemian (if Fields is out) so I’ll take the factors within the inflated unfold.

The choose: Bears +6

go-deeper

GO DEEPER

Rosenblatt: Jets’ Zach Wilson benching is a bold decision — and the right one

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The Jets’ transfer to Mike White at quarterback gained’t make a lot of a distinction this week towards the Bears. (Vincent Carchietta / USA Today)

Remember when Marcus Mariota was 6-0 ATS? Well, he and the Falcons are 0-4-1 since, together with final week’s push towards the Bears. That slide ought to proceed, as Washington’s protection will get a number of strain on quarterbacks and is fairly stout towards the run, which is Atlanta’s bread and butter.

For all of Mariota’s management strengths and athletic skill, unhealthy issues occur when he’s compelled to throw the ball quite a bit. He simply misplaced Kyle Pitts to injured reserve and hasn’t been in a position to make the most of the opposite playmakers that Atlanta has — 18.5 p.c of Drake London’s targets have been astray, the seventh-highest charge amongst gamers with 40-plus targets.

Washington is a playoff contender now — yeah, that’s right — and wins for the sixth time in seven weeks.

The choose: Commanders -4.5 

How unhealthy is the Broncos offense? The Panthers are rolling Sam Darnold back out there, and I’m not positive which staff has the quarterback edge.

Russell Wilson’s pocket consciousness and decision-making price them a win final week towards the Raiders, and the Panthers protection is quite a bit higher than the Raiders. Denver additionally reduce Melvin Gordon III for his fumbles, however Gordon was their finest wholesome working again by far.

It’s exhausting to roll with Darnold, however possibly he’s a brand new man with this offensive line. The Panthers have allowed strain at NFL’s second-lowest charge (25.8%) and the Broncos move rush is not what it was a month ago. Darnold solely must put up 17 factors — the Broncos are 1-5 when an opposing staff scores 17 factors. Everybody thinks Nathaniel Hackett is getting fired sooner or later, and this recreation will additional make the case that ready till after the season is pointless.

The choose: Panthers +2

The Ravens didn’t cowl for us final week however they simply might have. They did win their fourth recreation in a row (2-2 ATS) and their resurgent protection ought to be capable to strain Trevor Lawrence into some mistakes, whereas their run defense must also be capable to bottle up Travis Etienne Jr.

The Jaguars had misplaced six of seven video games going into their bye week, and their solely hope is the Ravens proceed to journey over their very own ft. They have the worst purple zone effectivity (52.6 p.c) of any Baltimore staff since 2018, down from 66 p.c the final three seasons.

The choose: Ravens -4

The Cardinals began off nicely Monday evening towards the 49ers, but it surely positive seemed like a few of the defensive gamers stop on the finish of that recreation. Red flag? Sure. But the 49ers are a bodily dominant staff. The Chargers? Not a lot. Their protection by no means obtained over Joey Bosa’s damage and moreover not getting a number of strain on the quarterback additionally they are a bit of delicate towards the run. James Conner ought to have an enormous day for the Cardinals no matter who’s enjoying quarterback. The Chargers rank 24th in Football Outsiders’ DVOA effectivity metric.

Mike Williams is damage once more and didn’t observe Wednesday, and it’s turn out to be clear that Justin Herbert wants each Williams and Keenan Allen wholesome to be elite:

• His numbers with each (30 dropbacks): 81.5 p.c completion charge, 8.85 YPA, 2 TD, 0 INT, 56.7 p.c success charge
• With both (324 dropbacks): 66.7 p.c completion charge, 6.91 YPA, 12 TD, 5 INT, 44.4 p.c success charge
• With neither (125 dropbacks): 66.4 p.c completion charge, 5.66 YPA, 4 TD, 2 INT, 45.6 p.c success charge

Yeah, I do assume Herbert is only a tad overrated, and he’s 7-12 ATS as a favourite of three factors or extra.

The choose: Cardinals +3

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Justin Herbert hasn’t been nearly as good when he doesn’t have each Mike Williams and Keenan Allen. (Robert Hanashiro / USA Today)

As I stated earlier, I’m throwing out the Munich consequence because the Seahawks had been enjoying at 6:30 a.m. native time they usually got here on sturdy late in that recreation. Geno Smith simply could be the real deal. The Seahawks have had an additional week to organize for a Raiders staff that’s not excellent defensively and wanted time beyond regulation to get previous an injury-riddled Broncos staff that has taken away their head coach’s play-calling and late-game time administration duties.

The Raiders are averaging -6.21 defensive EPA per recreation — the fourth-worst protection Derek Carr has performed with in his profession. They ought to be capable to decelerate Kenneth Walker III although, because the Raiders have allowed explosive runs on the seventh-lowest charge (7.2%)

It was a nice win for Carr, after an emotional week. He and Davante Adams and Josh Jacobs are definitely able to outscoring the Seahawks, however I’m not bought that the offense will take off now as a result of they made some performs late towards the Broncos. The Seahawks are the higher, rested and extra ready staff.

The choose: Seahawks -3.5

The Rams are waving the white flag. The protection made Andy Dalton seem like Tom Brady final week and Matthew Stafford is not playing this week. Bryce Perkins is the brand new Rams QB and he’s your man if you wish to gamble on a staff making an attempt to attain late to cowl an enormous level unfold. It opened at 10, is now at 15.5 and I gained’t be stunned if it hits 17.

I’ll take factors because the Chiefs don’t have anything to play for, having all however clinched the AFC West final week with the win over the Chargers. They feast on third-and-long, however they gained’t be in third-and-long this week. The Chiefs have beforehand been favored by 14 factors or extra 5 instances with Patrick Mahomes. They’re 5-0 however … 2-3 ATS.

The choose: Rams -15.5

We are grateful to the Rams for making the Saints look good this week and for this quantity not skyrocketing after the 49ers’ dominant efficiency in Mexico. Since buying McCaffrey, the 49ers are fifth in factors per drive (2.78) and fourth in EPA/drive (0.95). The Saints don’t strain the quarterback or cease the run notably nicely — and it won’t matter what hints Trent Williams drops.

Dalton actually struggled towards the Ravens’ and Steelers’ strain the earlier two weeks, and the 49ers protection makes these two look gradual. The 49ers are permitting 1.49 factors per drive, which stands because the lowest common by a San Francisco protection throughout the Shanahan period.

I don’t know if the 49ers have emerged because the NFC favorites but, however this isn’t even a velocity bump.

The choose: 49ers -9.5

The Packers are finished, and that win over the Cowboys was extra about Dallas taking a nap up 14 factors. Rodgers simply doesn’t have time to throw and when he does, his receivers stink. And, he hasn’t been as correct as he has up to now. Maybe a broken thumb has one thing to do with that.

Green Bay can also’t cease the run. The Packers have surrendered a league-worst 11 drives of 80-plus yards.

The Eagles, in the meantime, haven’t lined the unfold three weeks in a row, with shut wins over the Texans and Colts sandwiched round their solely loss, to the Commanders. Jalen Hurts gained’t be bothered by the Packers’ blitzes, as he has six touchdowns towards one interception towards additional rushers.

The Eagles have the protection — and the coordinator, according to Nick Sirianni — to frustrate Rodgers they usually have addressed their run-defense points by including Linval Joseph and Ndamukong Suh. The Eagles’ 67.9 p.c success charge vs. the run in Week 11 was their second-best mark of the season. On the 18 snaps that both Joseph or Suh had been on the sector, the Eagles allowed simply 2.83 yards per carry and 0.72 yards earlier than contact per carry — lower than half of the 1.65 yards earlier than contact the primary 10 weeks.

The choose: Eagles -6.5

We clearly all owe Jeff Saturday an apology. We stated he had no enterprise being a head coach, however he beat the Raiders and nearly beat the Eagles. Apparently, everybody has been mendacity once they say teaching within the NFL is hard.

He has relied closely on the run, because the Colts have an early-down move charge within the first 28 minutes of 41 p.c, making them the seventh-most run-heavy offense within the NFL the final two weeks. That will not be an incredible plan towards the Steelers, who rank fifth in success charge (64.3 p.c) and are stuffing 21.8 p.c of runs at or behind the road of scrimmage — the seventh-highest charge within the NFL.

Matt Ryan was below siege by the Eagles final week and I count on extra of the identical from T.J. Watt and firm. I’ve been constructing a case to guess the Steelers right here however there isn’t any worth in that time unfold. And the Steelers have too many questions to get no worth. Gus Bradley’s defense will make it exhausting for rookie Kenny Pickett, and I definitely don’t need Pickett and fewer than a subject aim on the street.

Saturday will get no respect!

The choose: Colts -2.5

— TruMedia analysis courtesy of NFL editor Aaron Reiss. 

(Graphic: Sean Reilly / The Athletic; picture of Deebo Samuel: Sean M. Haffey / Getty Images)



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