Vikings-Seahawks Betting Preview & Pick: Too Risky to Bet against 12th Man?

Dec 10, 2018
Vikings-Seahawks Betting Preview & Pick: Too Risky to Bet against 12th Man?

Happy Monday to everyone!

It wound up being a perfect Sunday. After falling behind 7-0 to the walking corpse that is the Atlanta Falcons, the Packers rolled to an easy victory and cover as a 4.5-point favorite. My two underdog selections, the Colts (+4 at Texans) and Bears (+3 vs. Rams), also won outright to cap off a 3-0 Sunday for my picks. The 3-0 Sunday puts me at 45-26-3 against the spread this NFL season and was a needed bounce-back effort after going 1-4 with my previous five picks.

Let’s try to cap off Week 14 with another ATS winner tonight in what should be a close game between the Vikings and Seahawks.

133 Minnesota Vikings at 134 Seattle Seahawks

  • Spread: Seahawks -3
  • O/U 46
  • Time: 8:15 p.m. ET

Line Movement

The Seahawks opened as 3.5-point favorites but the line was bet down to a field goal at most books. The total, meanwhile, sits at 46 points after hitting the board at 45.

Public Betting

Sixty-seven percent of the betting tickets and 66 percent of the money is on the Seahawks to cover the spread. As of Monday afternoon, 67 percent of the betting tickets and 87 percent of the money is on the over.

Trends

The favorite is 4-1 against the spread in the last five meetings between these two teams and so is the home team. The Vikings, meanwhile, are 1-4 against the number in their last five trips to Seattle and the over is a perfect 5-0 in the last five meetings between these two teams when the Seahawks are the host.

Prediction:

Analytically, there’s more to like about the Vikings tonight than the Seahawks. Seattle beat San Francisco 43-16 last week but was actually out-gained 480-353. That has been a trend for the Seahawks of late, as they’ve won three straight but lost the yardage battle in four of their last five contests. Remember when they staged the come-from-behind win a few weeks ago in Charlotte? The Panthers finished with 476 total yards compared to the Seahawks’ 397, but much like San Francisco (1-of-4), Carolina struggled inside the 20 (3-of-7).

The Vikings, at least statistically, are also the better team. They’re 15th overall in total offense, gaining 360.9 yards per game. They’re sixth defensively, limiting opponents to just 327.8 yards per contest. The Seahawks are 19th in total yards offensively and despite having an underrated defense, they’re also just 19th in yards allowed (367.4).

If you feel a “but” coming on, you’re right. Here’s the but: The Vikings are traveling for the second time in as many weeks. They lost last Sunday in Foxborough and will play cross-country tonight in Seattle, which is one of the toughest environments in the NFL to win as an opposing team. Regular readers know I’m big on travel and the reason for that is simple: We’re talking about men, not machines.

On paper, taking the better statistical team getting points makes sense. That said, I don’t trust Kirk Cousins in this spot. He and the Vikings beat a banged-up Packers team two weeks ago at home but couldn’t move the ball last Sunday in New England. Cousins has also struggled in prime-time games, including posting a 1-6 record on the road over the past three seasons.

I don’t love not knowing if Doug Baldwin (game-time decision) will play but ultimately, I’m fading the Vikings and their situation, so he’s absence isn’t the end-all, be-all for me in terms of backing the Seahawks. Simply put, it’s tough to beat Wilson and Pete Carroll in Seattle in prime-time situations with a lot on the line.

Pick: Seahawks -3

ATS Season Records

  • Week 1: 5-0
  • Week 2: 3-2
  • Week 3: 4-1
  • Week 4: 3-1-1
  • Week 5: 3-2
  • Week 6: 4-1
  • Week 7: 2-3
  • Week 8: 3-2
  • Week 9: 4-1
  • Week 10: 3-2
  • Week 11: 2-2-2
  • Week 12: 5-3
  • Week 13: 1-3
  • Week 14: 3-1
  • Overall: 45-26-3

Photo by Otto Greule Jr./Getty Images.

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