NFL Week 17 Key Numbers: Ravens Settling At -3.5 Vs. Dolphins

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Written By Mo Nuwwarah | Last Updated
NFL Key numbers week 17

NFL Week 17 odds have a usual selection of games on key numbers, highlighted by the game of the year in the AFC. Top two seeds, Baltimore and Miami, clash in the Charm City. Mid-week markets have the Ravens laying the hook after they opened -3 last week. Here, we’ll primarily focus on games hovering at or near these NFL key numbers with brief discussions of why or if they might move.

When betting on football, bettors must always keep in mind key numbers. NFL key betting numbers are precisely what they sound like. They are numbers in the spread that often hold the key to winning and losing. They frequently determine wins and losses in spread betting because they represent the most common margins of victory.

Football fans should naturally be aware that three and seven dominate (secondary key numbers include six, four, and 10). Things have changed a bit in recent years thanks to the longer extra point. But, historically, around 24% of games end with margins of three or seven.

NFL Week 17 Spreads Near Key Number of 3

Falcons At Bears

Some sports betting sites had -2.5s hanging in the look-ahead lines, but the market has settled at -3 across the board on Bears odds as of Wednesday afternoon. These were two of the market’s favorite teams in recent weeks, with the Bears seemingly getting sharp backing every week while Falcons odds took a ton of steam against Indianapolis.

This line seems sensible, but keep an eye out for possible Falcons money at the key number here. Bears backers should wait and see if there’s more appetite for Atlanta.

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Raiders At Colts

Wednesday morning steam on Colts odds moved the market to -3.5 after they had been -3 through the early week.

Will sharps pounce on the other side with the hook? The Raiders have been on an incredible run, ranking among the best defenses in EPA/play allowed since Josh McDaniels was shown the door. The only times they’ve allowed more than 20 points were to the Chiefs and then the Chargers in a dead game. A buyback on Raiders odds could occur with the hook, but keep in mind they won in Kansas City almost entirely on the back of defensive scores.

Dolphins At Ravens

Look-ahead lines agreed on this one: Ravens odds -3 across the board. However, after the Ravens won a high-profile game in San Francisco, the market got excited and moved them as high as -4 before they settled back at -3.5. There was even enough Miami action to bring some sites down to -3 again, albeit with additional juice on the Ravens’ end.

Where does that leave bettors who want action on the game of the week? In a good spot, probably. No matter which side you like, you can currently get a decent number — either laying just -3 with the Ravens or getting the hook at +3.5 on Dolphins odds. As long as bettors line shop, it will be tough to go wrong here, but the market does appear to be coming back pretty strongly on the Dolphins. We may have seen the last of the +4s.

Saints At Buccaneers

Look-ahead lines had Buccaneers odds south of the key number around -2 here. However, yet another strong performance has the market buying in despite the rest disadvantages. The Bucs have outperformed market expectations by 19 and 17.5 the past two weeks and won as underdogs the week prior.

However, keep in mind that while the Saints seem to be falling apart, they do have the greater motivational spot. The Bucs can drop this game, and it will only cost them a week of rest as long as they beat Carolina in Week 18. Don’t be surprised if Saints odds get some love at the key number as game day draws closer. It’s certainly hard to picture the Bucs laying -3.5.

Steelers At Seahawks

It sounds like the Steelers will once again start Mason Rudolph after he hit some big passing plays to secure a home win over the Bengals. This game hasn’t moved much at all from the lookaheads, so it seems pretty settled on +3.5 for Steelers odds. Seattle has gotten healthy at the QB position and will look to secure its place in odds to make the NFL playoffs.

Chargers At Broncos

This game did not originally fit near a key number, but Wednesday afternoon news has steamed Chargers odds. Reporters announced that Denver has opted to bench Russell Wilson, likely to ensure his contract doesn’t become fully guaranteed due to injury. That will push Jarrett Stidham into the starting lineup.

The longtime backup played fairly well in a similar cameo last year, relieving Jimmy Garoppolo. Yet, the market doesn’t appear to have much faith, hammering the Chargers from +5.5 to +3. Bettors can buy low on Broncos odds now or wait to see if -2.5 pops.

Week 17 Spreads Near Key Number of 7

Jets At Browns

With Zach Wilson having limited time to clear concussion protocol prior to Thursday Night Football, it sounds like Trevor Siemian will receive another start. The market has moved Browns odds from -5.5 on the look-ahead to -7 early in the week to -7.5 across the board now, giving the hook.

It’s hard to see how the Jets can move the ball here against an elite defense that has been especially potent at home. Naturally, some number exists that will spark interest in Jets odds. But, the way the line movement has gone, it might be closer to +10 than the key number here.

Panthers At Jaguars

Early markets favored the Jaguars more heavily, closer to -10, but another poor performance and yet another injury to Trevor Lawrence has this number dipping. The receiving corps looks broken without multiple outside threats, and Lawrence has injured his shoulder to add to his ankle woes. It sounds like he’s hoping to go, but what level of play he can provide is anyone’s guess.

Panthers odds have mostly settled south of the key number, although one rogue +7 (at just -112, DraftKings Sportsbook) hung around all of Wednesday morning. Given that Carolina has looked somewhat spry in recent weeks with back-to-back covers, more Panthers money will come in unless and until Lawrence confirms he’s playing.

Bengals At Chiefs

Despite a horrific offensive showcase on Monday, Chiefs odds are still holding at the key number here. The Bengals can’t stop anyone and should provide the antidote for whatever poison the skill players, coaching staff and tackles are ingesting in K.C.

Still, the Bengals have had a weird season themselves. Jake Browning has looked like a serviceable NFL quarterback at times. At others, he’s looked overmatched. The Chiefs have a better defense than the Steelers, so he would figure to be in a tough spot, but the Bengals coaching staff has consistently schemed up productive plans on both sides of the ball against the Chiefs in recent years.

With the market seemingly hammering Bengals odds every week, we may still see this number dip and settle at Chiefs -6.

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