The NFL’s Week 18 schedule features a big Saturday matchup in Chiefs-Raiders and some key Sunday matchups between the Browns-Steelers, Cowboys-Commanders, and Lions-Packers.
Cleveland Browns vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Sunday, January 8, 2023 – 01:00 PM EST at Acrisure Stadium
Najee Harris (Pittsburgh Steelers)
- Over 73.5 Rushing Yards
The difference in running back Najee Harris’ effectiveness from his first season to his second has not been as obvious or dynamic as the improvement Le’Veon Bell once showed for the Steelers in 2014. But Harris has done something impressive in the way he has made strides in the second half of the season after a disappointing start to 2022.
- First eight games: 45.1 rushing yards per game, 3.34 yards per carry, 4.67 yards per catch
- Last eight games: 74.1 rushing yards per game, 4.21 yards per carry, 6.69 yards per catch
The Steelers have been behind less often since the bye week thanks to keeping the turnovers down and playing lesser teams, which helps get Harris more carries. But he is making more out of his opportunities and has shown better vision.
Steady Second Half of Season
Harris has rushed for over 85 yards in 5-of-8 games since the bye week. It is amusing to see his line at 73.5 yards as his average is 74.1 since the bye, but he just had his first 100-yard rushing game this season against the Ravens.
Cleveland was Harris’ best opponent in his rookie season, rushing for 91 yards on the rod and a career-high 188 yards in his only home game against the Browns. The Browns held him to 56 yards in Week 3, but he looks better now, and the team is playing with confidence as it looks to finish with a winning record again.
Trust Harris to finish this season on a high note for your NFL picks and hit his rushing over against the No. 25 run defense.
NFL Prop Pick: Najee Harris Over 73.5 Rushing Yards (-115) at Bovada
Los Angeles Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks
Sunday, January 8, 2023 - 04:25 PM EST at Lumen Field
Cam Akers (Los Angeles Rams)
- Over 72.5 Rushing Yards
The Rams have had a very disappointing season, but someone finishing in style is running back Cam Akers. He has been up and down in his career with the Rams, but he has rushed for 123 and 118 yards in the last two games.
He had 60 rushing yards and two touchdowns against the Seahawks in Week 13, but he has been even better the last two weeks to help this offense finish the year with Baker Mayfield, who was not the quarterback in Week 13.
Seattle has been pretty good against the run the last two weeks, but on the season, this defense is one of the worst: 30th in yards and 26th in yards per carry. The Seahawks have allowed over 160 rushing yards a game about half the time this year.
Trust the Rams to run the ball well in this game too and for Akers to hit his over to give the team something to think about when it comes to the lead back position in 2023.
Fans from the Golden State who wish to make a wager on this game should be sure to check out our top rated California betting sites.
NFL Prop Pick: Cam Akers Over 72.5 Rushing Yards (-115) at Bovada
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Las Vegas Raiders
Saturday, January 7, 2023 - 04:30 PM EST at Allegiant Stadium
Patrick Mahomes (Kansas City Chiefs)
- Over 2.5 Passing Touchdowns
The Chiefs can wrap up a 14-3 season, a No. 1 seed in the AFC, and a second MVP award for Patrick Mahomes with a good showing in Las Vegas. Mahomes threw five touchdown passes in his last trip to Vegas in a 41-14 win last season.
In Week 5 this season, Mahomes threw four touchdowns to Travis Kelce despite the tight end only finishing the game with 25 receiving yards. It was a masterclass in the red zone with Kelce beating the Raiders on the same route over and over.
The duo has not connected on a touchdown in the last five games, and a sixth-straight game without a touchdown for Kelce from Mahomes would be the longest drought of their career together. Look for that streak to end.
Mahomes Spreads the Ball Around
Mahomes also has thrown a touchdown to running back Jerick McKinnon in five straight games, the first time a running back has done that since 1947. This offense is just taking what the defense gives them this year.
Mahomes already leads the league with 40 touchdown passes, his second season doing that already. He has eight games with at least three touchdown passes in 2022, so he has done it half the time.
Look for him to do it again as the stakes are still high for these Chiefs as they close out the regular season.
NFL Prop Pick: Patrick Mahomes Over 2.5 Passing Touchdowns (-114) at Bovada
Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Commanders
Sunday, January 8, 2023 - 04:25 PM EST at FedExField
Ezekiel Elliott (Dallas Cowboys)
- Anytime Touchdown Scorer
Ezekiel Elliott has scored a touchdown in nine straight games. His consistency matches the historical consistency of this scoring offense. The Cowboys have scored at least 24 points in every game since Dak Prescott returned in Week 7.
Even better, the Cowboys have scored at least 27 points in nine straight games, the longest streak in franchise history, and tied for the seventh-longest streak in NFL history (including playoffs).
The Dak and Zeke Show Continues
Elliott has scored a touchdown in 7-of-12 games against Washington in his career, but three of the times he was shut out he did not have Prescott as his quarterback, including back in Week 4.
The Cowboys may not have a ton to play for if the Eagles take it to the Giants quickly like they did last time. But these teams are playing in the same time slot this Sunday, and if the Giants should happen to upset Philly, then the Cowboys win the NFC East with a win in Washington.
It does not appear that Mike McCarthy is ready to rest his starters and blow this game off. Look for the Cowboys to keep up their scoring ways, and Elliott is the safest bet of anyone in this offense to find the end zone again.
NFL Prop Pick: Ezekiel Elliott Anytime Touchdown Scorer (+110) at Bovada
Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers
Sunday, January 8, 2023 - 08:20 PM EST at Lambeau Field
Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers)
- Under 0.5 Passes Intercepted
The main reason the Packers lost in Detroit in Week 9 was one of the most uncharacteristic games of Aaron Rodgers’ career. He threw three interceptions deep in scoring territory in the 15-9 loss. It was an odd game all around as the Lions scoring 15 points at home is very unusual this year too.
Rodgers has thrown 11 interceptions this year, and nine of them have come on the road. He’ll be at home this Sunday night where he rarely throws picks.
A-Rod Cooks at Home
In 12 career home games against the Lions, Rodgers has been intercepted in three of them, and two of those games were way back in 2009 and 2010. The Lions have intercepted Rodgers once in their last nine visits to Lambeau Field.
Since this is essentially a playoff game for the Packers, you can also look at how 11 of his 13 playoff interceptions have been thrown on the road. He has just two interceptions in nine home playoff starts.
Detroit’s defense has 11 interceptions this year, a below-average number even with Rodgers helping them out with a trio in Week 9. He knows he cannot do that again, so look for him to protect the ball well at home like he has his whole career.
NFL Prop Pick: Aaron Rodgers Under 0.5 Passes Intercepted (-170) at Bovada
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