Bills Vikings Spread Line and Betting Predictions Week 13

Buffalo enter this game on the heels of one of the most heartbreaking games in recent memory, as they were able to come from behind to take Pittsburgh into overtime, only to have the game winning touchdown slip through the hands of Stevie Johnson. The Steelers subsequently marched down the field and hit the game winning field goal. This was the third overtime loss of the season for the Bills, who now sit at 2-9. I would not be the first NFL writer to say that this has got to be the most exciting, fun to watch 2-9 team in history. The Bills were able to keep pace with the Steelers, who are considered one of the top teams in the entire league. Fred Jackson was also able to rush with great success against Pittsburgh’s defense, which is largely considered to be impossible to run on. Whether Buffalo chooses to take their loss as a moral victory or allow the frustration at being so close and still losing to get the better of them should make for an interesting game against Minnesota this week. Ryan Fitzpatrick has been a revelation for the Bills since he has taken over for Trent Edwards. The Harvard educated quarterback has thrown at least 1 touchdown in every game this season, including 4 on 2 occasions. He has also thrown for at least 265 yards in 3 of his last 4 games. Considering that Buffalo doesn’t exactly boast a pro bowl calibre level of receivers, this is a pretty impressive feat. Between Fitzpatrick, Johnson and Jackson, the Bills have put up some decent offensive statistics recently, and have won 2 of their last 3.

Meanwhile, the Minnesota Vikings showed some signs of life last week under new coach Leslie Frazier, winning 17-13 against Washington, improving their record to 4-7. While this is certainly not the fairy tale ending to his career that Brett Favre anticipated, you can bet that Favre will be looking to string together a few wins here to go out on at least a semi-positive note. The Vikes seem to gel a lot better with Frazier in control of the team, and put forth a very solid effort last week. While the playoffs are probably out of reach, they do have a possible path to .500. The win against the Redskins wasn’t all positive, however. Pro bowl running back Adrian Peterson, who is 3rd in the league in rush yards with 1016, left the game last week with an ankle injury. His status for Sunday’s game is uncertain, and one has to think that even if he does play, his workload will be limited considerably. This opens the door for Toby Gerhart to get a lot of work against one of the league’s worst rushing defenses. Gerhart impressed last week, rushing for 76 yards on 22 carries, and finding the endzone once as well. As the Brett Favre farewell tour officially begins (he announced his plans to retire at the end of the season this week…but this time he means it), I would look for him to have a couple more big games, and this is one of the easier matchups for him to do so.

The most glaring weakness between the two teams is Buffalo’s inability to stop the run. They are ranked dead last in rushing yards per game, giving up 167.4 per game. The Bills are likely keeping their fingers crossed that Peterson is out on Sunday, as even though Gerhart has shown some decent skill, he is obviously not able to fully step into AP’s shoes. The Bills are pretty decent against the pass, allowing a respectable 209.9 yards per game. This means that Favre will need to count on whoever his running back is to do most of the heavy lifting. Meanwhile, Fred Jackson will have another tough assignment, as the Vikings allow under 93 rushing yards per game. Their pass defense is a little more forgiving, so look for Fitzpatrick to air it out fairly consistently. Let’s just hope Stevie Johnson and the big man upstairs have patched up their little dispute.

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Bills vs Vikings Spread, Line and Betting Odds:

Spread:

Buffalo Bills +5.5
@ Minnesota Vikings -5.5

Game Total:

Over (-110)
44.5
Under (-110)

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Bills vs Vikings Betting Predictions/Picks for Week 13

Spread Prediction: (TOP PLAY): The Bills are better than their record indicates, as the 3 overtime losses indicate. Meanwhile, Minnesota had the added boost of morale in playing for their new coach last week, and even still narrowly scraped by Washington, who have looked extremely vulnerable as of late. If the Vikings are without Peterson, or if he is severely limited, that is the key ingredient of the Minnesota attack missing. Buffalo are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 on the road, and 5-0-1 ATS in their last 6 overall. Meanwhile, the Vikings are 1-5 ATS in their last 6, and 2-7 following an ATS win. Despite the home field advantage, I think that Minnesota are a very vulnerable team, and Buffalo is playing like a team that has nothing to lose, which is always dangerous for an opponent. Brett Favre is a shell of his former self, and is way too inconsistent to trust. Throw in the fact that he has been battling a myriad of injuries, and there is no sure way of knowing how effective he will be. Fitzpatrick has proven to be a smart, able quarterback that won’t make a lot of mental mistakes. I like Buffalo to cover here, and could even sneak away with a last second win.

Spread Pick: Bills +5.5 (TOP PLAY)

Game Total Prediction: Minnesota is actually 3rd last in the league in points per game at 17.2, while Buffalo sits at 20.8. Admittedly, the Bills defense can be ravaged by aggressive teams, but they were able to hold Big Ben and the Steelers to only 19 points, including overtime. In fact, in 4 of their last 5, Buffalo have allowed 22 points or less. Their defense is clearly improving, and Minnesota’s offense will be sputtering, especially without AP leading the charge, or playing at less than 100%. The Under has won in 4 of Buffalo’s last 5, and is 8-3 following a Bills ATS win. It is also 8-3 in the Vikings’ last 11 games at home. This won’t be the prettiest of games, and could be a situation where it is Rian Lindell against Ryan Longwell as the teams trade field goals. I’m backing the under.

Pick: Under 44.5

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