When the schedule first came out, the team from Oakland that now calls Las Vegas home was favored by a field goal.
Now, after surpassing their expected win total before their bye, it’s the team from the Emerald City that’s favored ... by a little more than a field goal.
If you’re the type that believes home field is worth 3 points, Sunday’s matchup between the 6-4 Seattle Seahawks and the 3-7 Las Vegas Raiders would have you looking for a coin to flip if the game were on a neutral field.
Fortunately for the Seahawks, the game is at Lumen Field.
And, after having had almost a full month to rest their voices, the 12s who are in attendance at Sunday’s game ought to be loud enough to break the NFL’s decibel meter.
I’m not talking about during the game though.
I’m talking about before the game, when the 12s give the Raiders (+155) a raucous THANK YOU for having just handed Denver their 7th loss and (potentially) giving the Seahawks (-180) a top-5 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft in the process.
Let’s not look ahead too far though.
Offensively, the Raiders average 10 less yards a game than the Seahawks do (352.1 vs. 342.3) and 3 fewer points (25.7 vs. 22.5).
Defensively, it’s a virtual dead heat.
- Yards allowed per game: Seattle 370.0; Las Vegas 370.5
- Points allowed per game: Seattle 24.1; Las Vegas 24.2
Note: This is the part where I mention that the Over/Under is 47.5 points and that it’s one of the highest Over/Unders of Week 12 (only Bills-v-Lions and Bears-v-Jets are higher).
For those who are thinking that the Seahawks will be well-rested since they had their bye in Week 11 while the Raiders went to overtime against the Broncos ...
You’re right, the Seahawks will be well-rested.
The Seahawks have only won 7 of the 12 games after their bye weeks under Peter Carroll, including the 37-34 overtime loss to the Cardinals in 2020 and the shutout in Green Bay last season.
That said, the Raiders haven’t won in Seattle in nearly a quarter century with their last Emerald City W coming on November 1st, 1998.
Fun Fact: The winning quarterback that day was a guy named Donald Hollas who had 237 yards passing ... with only 12 completions.
Bottom Line: On paper, Seattle is arguably the better team. Record-wise, Seattle is clearly the better team. From a coaching standpoint, Seattle is unquestionably the better team.
Yet DraftKings Sportsbook has the opening line at a mere 3-1/2 points and I’m sort of wondering if Seattle will cover.