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December 27, 2019

NFL Week 17 betting advice: Take the Giants and the points against the Eagles

Plus, a preview of Saturday night's CFP semifinal, the Fiesta Bowl, between Ohio State and Clemson...

Each Friday for PhillyVoice, Steve Maltepes, known as “The Philly Godfather,” will impart his gambling wisdom on the Eagles and where the smart money is going on various pro football games this weekend. Maltepes is one of the nation’s hottest sports betting experts who appears weekly on national radio and has his own website,

Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants, 4:25 p.m. Sunday

Games 115 & 116 the sports betting screen

The Line: Eagles -4.5 | Total: 45

What is the line telling you: The Eagles opened up as 4.5-point road favorites over the Giants. The line shot up to 5.5, due to the overreaction off that big win against Dallas, and that's when the sharp money jumped all over the New York Giants. The last time the Eagles played the Giants at home, they took the Birds to overtime with Eli Manning. The Giants had chances to beat Philly outright as 10-point underdogs. Now, they have Daniel Jones back, who’s the better QB.

Books are begging for Eagles money.

If you read between the lines, the Eagles should never have been 10-point favorites in Philly to start. Now, oddsmakers are telling us they're basically a bigger favorite than the first time they played, yet the Giants get an upgrade at the QB position.

As of right now, almost 65% of all tickets punched are on the Eagles. This ticket count will more than likely get more lopsided by kickoff.

Bottom line: Take the home dog Giants here small at the current number of plus-4.5.

Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings, 1:00 p.m. Sunday

Games 105 & 106 on the sports betting screen

The Line: Vikings -2.5 | Total: 36.5

What is the line telling you: After the Monday night loss to the Packers, the oddsmakers reopened this line with the Vikings being a small 2.5-point favorite over the Bears in Minnesota with the combined total set at 39 points. Since then, we've seen some money hit the screen on both the side and total, which forced the books to readjust their price again. The current Vegas spread has the Vikings laying 1 at home, with a real short total of 36.5 and or 37 depending on where you shop. Taking a peek at the bet splits, it looks like an overwhelming majority of the public is all over Mike Zimmer’s 10-5 squad. It's really top heavy at an 80-20 split. There are no stats to look at, no gambling angles, no travel, no home field advantage. This game comes down to incentive by player or coach and who's on the field with a desire to prove something, or which team wants to end on a good note. It has to be the Bears here. 

The Vikings are locked and loaded as the sixth seed and they would be playing Russian roulette heading into the playoffs if they were to play their starters.

Bottom line: Bears coach Matt Nagy said, “Being able to go win the game is important to us.” That definitely carries some weight here. The current line has now ballooned to Bears minus-3. Bet the Bears money line. 

MORE: Jimmy Kempski's Week 17 picks

San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks, 8:20 p.m. Sunday

Games 129 & 130 on the sports betting screen

The Line: 49ers -3 | Total: 50

What is the line telling you: The Vegas line originally opened as a pick’em, but with the injuries that came in bunches for the Seahawks, the market moved at an accelerated pace. By Sunday night, we saw this number blast up to that key number of 3, before knocking down the door and settling in at 3.5 at the sharper offshore betting houses. There's still a bunch of 3s in the market that are slightly juiced.

The 49ers are the right side.

This is a huge revenge game for the 49ers. The last time they faced Seattle, tight end George Kittle was missing and Emmanuel Sanders got knocked out of the game early, which really slowed down Kyle Shanahan’s offense. This time, they're both playing.

Bottom line: Take San Francisco on the money line or buy the game down to 2.5 and lay the points.

Clemson Tigers vs. Ohio State Buckeyes, 8:00 p.m. Saturday

Games 243 & 244 the sports betting screen

The Line: Clemson -2 | Total: 63.5

What is the line telling you: The sharper offshore betting houses originally opened this line a pick’em between these two college football juggernauts and we immediately saw the market react as we witnessed an influx of large wagers start to shape this line and push this spread to as high as Clemson minus-3, before it was met with resistance from one of the sharpest betting syndicates in the country that sent out purchase orders on the dog Ohio State plus-3. 

Even though both teams’ stats rank in the top five in every metric that counts on both sides of the ball, Ohio State has beaten five teams this year in the top 25, while Clemson snuck by Texas A&M, 24-10, and blew out Virginia.

When we look at their strength-of-schedule, the Buckeyes have had the toughest schedule in college football this year, while Clemson ranks 34 spots below them.

Bottom line: The wrong team is favored here. Bet the Buckeyes at plus-3 and on the money line. You can still take plus-115 on the dog and plus-2 on Ohio State.

(Betting lines are subject to change.)

The Philly Godfather can be followed on twitter @Phillygodfather & his website is

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