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NFL Betting 2022: Week 12 spread picks to bet before lines move

East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams (30) celebrates his rushing touchdown with offensive tackle Taylor Decker (68) during the first half against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

• Back the Detroit Lions (+9.5): Detroit's offense has surprisingly outperformed Buffalo's recently by expected points added.

• Bet the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3): The Browns' defense is struggling to contain opponents, and the Buccaneers are well-rested after a bye.

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Estimated Reading Time: 5 mins

Editor's Note: Betting lines are accurate as of post-Sunday Night Football.

Detroit Lions (+9.5) vs. Buffalo Bills

Why to bet:

Detroit is actually doing better than Buffalo on offense by expected points added per play since Week 6, and the Bills were without edge defender Gregory Rousseau, cornerback Tre’Davious White and linebacker Tremaine Edmunds in Week 11 against the Cleveland Browns, allowing Jacoby Brissett to throw for 7.5 yards per attempt with Amari Cooper open all afternoon.

Detroit’s offensive line is a stout unit that can neutralize the Bills' pass rush to some degree, particularly on the interior, where they performed admirably in Week 11 against a New York Giants duo of Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams that has wreaked havoc on opponents this season. 

There is an emotional or narrative component to this bet, even though we, of course, want to prioritize logical rationales. Bills players had to deal with the real-world consequences of five to six feet of snow falling late this week and literally had to shovel their way to the Buffalo airport Saturday afternoon to fly to Detroit for their Week 11 game. They chose to return home to Buffalo for a few days before going back to Ford Field, and the mental wear and tear seems like a lot to overcome. Detroit has experience playing with the short turnaround to Thursday afternoon because they play on Thanksgiving every year, and while they could very well lose to a far superior opponent, covering 9.5 seems like a lot to ask of this Bills squad given everything they’re dealing with off the field. 

Why to be wary:

The Bills' offense could very well go nuclear on the Lions' defense, especially if cornerback Jeffrey Okudah has to miss the contest with a concussion. For what it’s worth, he tweeted “I’m good” after the game. Detroit allowed the Giants to gain 5.7 yards per play in Week 11, with quarterback Daniel Jones throwing for 341 yards and rushing for 50. 


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