Finally. For perhaps the first weekend this season, weather factors into our teaser picks. We're not talking rainy weather, but watch-next-to-the-fireplace weather.
Word of warning: The pertinent games involve teams from cold climates. Plus, forecasts can change by the Sunday kickoffs.
We will assume that the weatherperson will not call an audible and issue two of our selections based on a c-c-c-cold calculation.
It's the usual menu: one teaser based on totals, one linked to point spreads and one strictly for the Sunday/Monday nighters.
Totals teaser: Giants-Bears Under 43, Raiders-Colts Under 50.5
Mid-teens is the expected temperature, as well as a likely points total for at least one of these offensively challenged squads. Forget field goals, with wind speeds also anticipated in the mid-teens. About two-thirds of the Giants listed on Thursday's injury-illness report play offense. In five of their last six games, New York has managed between six and 13 points. Chicago did put up 25 at Seattle but with an offense that averaged just 4.6 yards per play.
Raiders-Colts is indoors, but the controlled climate should not enhance scoring. Las Vegas has somehow won its last two straight-up while recording 33 points combined. That exceeded the 24 tallied in the previous pair of outings. An Under becomes more probable if Indy goes with QB Sam Ehlinger in lieu of Carson Wentz (COVID-19). Wentz will not practice this week and, given that the Colts are nearly locked into the AFC's top wild-card slot and meet the Jaguars in Week 18, Wentz could be held out even if available.
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