New York Giants, Washington Football Team Go from Underdogs to Favorites in NFC East

Posted on: December 12, 2020, 11:48h.

Last updated on: December 12, 2020, 11:48h.

The NFC East might as well be renamed the NFC Least. With four games to go in the 2020 NFL season, all four teams are below .500. Moreover, the two teams who appeared to be the least likely to win the division at the start of the season are the favorites entering the stretch run.

New York Giants Wayne Gallman
New York Giants Wayne Gallman
New York Giants running back Wayne Gallman celebrates after scoring against the Cincinnati Bengals on Nov. 29. Gallman has helped offset the season-ending injury suffered by star running back Saquon Barkley and propelled the Giants to first place in the NFC East. (Image: Joseph Maiorana/USA TODAY Sports)

When the season kicked off on Sept. 8, the Dallas Cowboys were -127 to win the division, followed by the Philadelphia Eagles are +146, New York Giants are +1,150 and the Washington Football Team at +1,650.

Even in mid-October after Dallas lost quarterback Dak Prescott to a season-ending injury, the Cowboys and Eagles remained the favorites and the Giants had soared to a whopping +4,000.

Now, entering Sunday’s games, the Giants (5-7) are a commanding -143 at DraftKings, followed by Washington (5-7) at +140, Philadelphia (3-8-1) at +1,400 and Dallas (3-9) at +4,000.

“I can’t believe that the Giants and the Washington Football Team, who we considered having no chance to win – forget the Super Bowl but no chance to win the NFC East – and now they’re the top teams contending. What a turnaround,” said Johnny Avello, the director of race and sportsbook operations at DraftKings, said to Casino.org.

NFC East Underdogs

All four NFC East teams are underdogs this week. That includes Philadelphia, which benched budget-busting quarterback Carson Wentz in favor of rookie Jalen Hurts for its game against the visiting New Orleans Saints (10-2).

In a battle of backup quarterbacks, the Taysom Hill-led Saints have gone from 6.5-point favorites to 8-point favorites and are getting 86 percent of the money at FanDuel.

In one of the big games of the week, the Kansas City Chiefs (11-1) visit the surprising Miami Dolphins (8-4). Behind MVP front-runner Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs are 7-point favorites and getting about three-fourths of the money.

Avello noted the Chiefs are 6-6 against the spread and the Dolphins are 9-3 “and it doesn’t matter. We’re still taking quite a bit of Chiefs money. The Chiefs are just a popular team to bet. They just grab money every week.”

In the Sunday night game, the Pittsburgh Steelers (11-1) are at the Buffalo Bills (9-3). Pittsburgh is coming off a shocking loss last week to Washington.

“That loss by the Steelers last week kind of soured the players a little bit,” Avello said. “They’ve gone from 1.5-point favorites to 2-point underdogs, and that’s with getting James Conner back and having the No. 1 defense in points allowed.”

Week 14 Schedule

Of the remaining 15 games, the road team is the favorite in nine of them. One home team that is favored is Seattle, with the Seahawks being 15.5-point favorites over the winless New York Jets – by far the biggest spread this week.

Here’s the full schedule. All times are Eastern.

Sunday’s Games

  • Denver at Carolina (-3.5), 1 p.m.
  • Houston at Chicago (+2), 1 p.m.
  • Dallas at Cincinnati (+3), 1 p.m.
  • Tennessee at Jacksonville (+7), 1 p.m.
  • Kansas City at Miami (+7), 1 p.m.
  • Arizona at New York Giants (+3), 1 p.m.
  • Minnesota at Tampa Bay (-7), 1 p.m.
  • Indianapolis at Las Vegas (+3), 4:05 p.m.
  • New York Jets at Seattle (-15.5), 4:05 p.m.
  • Green Bay at Detroit (+9), 4:25 p.m.
  • Atlanta at Los Angeles Chargers (-1), 4:25 p.m.
  • New Orleans at Philadelphia (+8), 4:25 p.m.
  • Washington at San Francisco (-2.5), 4:25 p.m.
  • Pittsburgh at Buffalo (-2), 8:20 p.m.

Monday’s Game

  • Baltimore at Cleveland (+3), 8:15 p.m.

Of note considering this week’s betting trends, road favorites are 34-37-1 this season against the spread, according to ESPN.com.

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