NFL fan Joshua Jones (@JoshuapsJones) oversees Saturday's action from Week 15.
Buffalo Bills @ Denver Broncos | Saturday 19th December 2020, 21:30 | Sky Sports
Buffalo Bills (10-3) head into Saturday’s early game against the Denver Broncos (5-8) on top of the world, having handily dispatched the AFC leading Pittsburgh Steelers in primetime last Sunday.
The Bills were imperious in the second half of that game, winning on all sides of the ball. They completely took over the third quarter, out-scoring the Steelers 14-0 and outgaining them by 144 yards to 31.
There is potential for a hangover, here, with Buffalo travelling to Mile High Stadium on a relatively short week. You could probably make a case for most teams struggling here, but the way this side are coached it’s hard to imagine they’ll be allowed to lose focus of their main goal.
On the other side is the Denver Broncos. I still can’t work out whether they’re a sneaky good side, or they’re a disappointingly bad side.
On the face of it, all the pieces are there. They’ve got all the young talent they could ask for at receiver, they’re competent on both sides of the line of scrimmage, and, they’ve got some truly scary players on the backend.
Their issue once again is at QB, where Drew Lock (and his supporting cast) continue to hold the franchise back. He threw four touchdowns against the Panthers last week, and it was only enough to move him level on TDs and INTs for the season at 13-13.
Like all other QBs Lock has guys that he trusts and, thankfully for us, one of them is playing in what is a soft spot for Buffalo.
TE Noah Fant is a problem player for the Bills. No side has allowed more receptions to the position (75) than them this season, and I fancy Fant to have over 3.5 receptions at 7/10 with unibet.
Ignoring the Kendall Hinton game, Fant averages 4.3 receptions per game – surpassing this line in seven of his 10 starts. The Bills have also allowed 28 receptions to opposing tight ends in their last five games, making this one a very enticing play.
Carolina Panthers @ Green Bay Packers | Sunday 20th December 2020, 01:15 | Sky Sports
Green Bay Packers (10-3) welcome the Carolina Panthers (4-9) to Lambeau Field in Saturday’s late game, looking to strengthen their grip on the NFC’s only play-off bye.
James Acaster recently aired his latest stand-up special, ‘Cold Lasagne Hate Myself Tour 1999’ and it got me thinking about what Aaron Rodgers would call this season.
The 2011 MVP has been in his best form since then in 2020, for what I am now calling the ‘Dairy Queen Blizzard Touchdown King Tour 2020’.
The Packers QB has been almost perfect as Green Bay have charged towards the #1 seed in the NFC, with his average QB rating of 119.7 over 7.0 points higher than any other quarterback. Through 13 games, he’s 312-448 for 3,685 yards, with 39 touchdowns and just four interceptions.
His 39 passing touchdowns lead the NFL, and that’s where we’ll be going for my first selection in this game. It’s proved fruitful for me for the last couple of gameweeks – and I’ll keep backing it until it stops being – so I’m on Aaron Rodgers 3+ Passing Touchdowns at 11/8 with SkyBet (RequestABet).
Ten of Rodgers’ 13 games have seen him hit this line; while Carolina have conceded at least three passing TDs to opposing quarterbacks in four of their last five games, including allowing Drew Lock to throw FOUR against them last weekend.
Another Green Bay player I’ll be keeping a close on is tight end Robert Tonyan.
Going into this season there were two players Rodgers trusted enough to throw the ball to regularly, potentially the best receiver in the league Davante Adams and the always reliable Allen Lazard. Now there are three.
Now in his third year, Tonyan has proven himself to be a reliable weapon for Matt LaFleur’s offense, catching 46 of his 53 targets for 533 yards and nine touchdowns. His 88.5% catch rate is the best in the NFL among tight-ends, and shows why A-Rod is so comfortable targeting him.
That’s why I’m on Tonyan to have 4+ receptions, 35+ rec. yards and to score a TD at 11/4 with SkyBet. He has 19 receptions, four TDs and an average of 46.5 yards per game over his last four starts and is up against a Panthers defense that, alongside Buffalo, has allowed more receptions to tight ends (75) than any other team in the league.
Carolina are giving up 59.3 yards per game to the position, and Tonyan could have himself another nice game against this soft Panthers underbelly.
Buffalo Bills @ Denver Broncos – Noah Fant to have Over 3.5 Receptions (7/10 Unibet)
Carolina Panthers @ Green Bay Packers – Aaron Rodgers 3+ Passing Touchdowns (11/8 SkyBet)
Carolina Panthers @ Green Bay Packers – Robert Tonyan to have 4+ Receptions, 35+ Receiving Yards and to score a TD (11/4 SkyBet)