Denver Broncos (12-3) at Oakland Raiders (4-11)
I really don’t have a good feel for this game. We’re not getting any real line value either way, as this line is exactly where it should be. The Broncos are moving the chains at a ridiculous 80.75% rate, as opposed to 71.94% for their opponents, a differential of 8.81%, first in the NFL. The Raiders, meanwhile, are all the way down at 31st, moving the chains at a 67.05% rate, as opposed to 73.77% for their opponents, a differential of -6.72%. That suggests this line should be around 12.5 in favor of Denver, which is exactly where it is.
I’m taking the Raiders for one reason and one reason only and I’m definitely not confident. However, big home underdogs have been covering at a noticeably high rate in recent years. It’s not a trend that dates back historically or anything, but, for whatever reason, home underdogs of 7.5 or more are 18-8 ATS since 2011, including 7-3 ATS in a divisional matchup. Gun to my head, I like the Raiders to keep it within 12.5.
Denver Broncos 27 Oakland Raiders 16
Pick against spread: Oakland +12.5