Week 13 in the NFL features a fantastic headliner on Monday Night Football along with several pivotal matchups for both the NFC and AFC playoff races. The first article in The Professor’s NFL Games of the Week series covered the Patriots at the Bills, the Ravens at the Steelers, the Chargers at the Bengals, and the 49ers at the Seahawks, while this article covers the Football Team at the Raiders, the Broncos at the Chiefs, the Eagles at the Jets, and the Vikings at the Lions. All spreads and totals are provided by DraftKings.
Washington Football Team at Las Vegas Raiders (LVR -2.5, Total 49.5)
Washington and Las Vegas appeared to be dead in the water a few weeks ago, but a three-game win streak for the Football Team and a Raiders upset win over the Cowboys have shifted the narrative. If the NFL playoffs started today, Washington would be the last Wild Card team in the NFC and the Raiders would be one of four AFC teams with six wins in a tie-breaker for the seventh AFC spot.
This is not a must-win for either team, as Washington finishes the season with five straight NFC East matchups and the Raiders finish with five games against teams in the thick of the AFC playoff race, but it remains a pivotal matchup for two teams trying to build consistency. A playoff berth is great, but fans of the Football Team and the Raiders want more, and these teams need to trend up to finish the season to have a chance to make noise in their respective playoff brackets.