NFL odds Week 15: Wacky wins and bad beats

What’s worse than giving up a tying touchdown with 32 seconds remaining?

Making a huge mental mistake that results in giving up a game-ending TD as time expired.

Such was the case for the New England Patriots, who squandered a 24-17 lead by giving up two touchdowns in a span of 32 seconds to hand the Las Vegas Raiders a 30-24 victory Sunday.

The Patriots-Raiders finish was the wildest in a weekend of thrilling games which resulted in bettors unexpectedly cashing in or ripping up tickets in exasperation.

Welcome to the world of wacky wins and bad beats in sports betting.

Each week, we’ll recap the betting plays that had some people cashing in and others tearing up their tickets in frustration. To paraphrase famed broadcaster Al Michaels, “those plays are significant to some.”

Let’s dive into this week’s craziness!

Raiders plunder a victory

Las Vegas defensive end Chandler Jones made a play that will go down as one of the strangest/wildest finishes in NFL history.

The Patriots and Raiders were tied at 24 on the final play of the fourth quarter.

The Patriots ran a draw play to Rhamondre Stevenson, who ran up the middle for 23 yards before lateraling to receiver Jakobi Meyers.

Meyers – who was recruited to North Carolina State as a quarterback – tried to throw a lateral to quarterback Mac Jones but underthrew him.

Waiting was Chandler Jones, who caught the ball – not bad for a defensive end! – stiff-armed Mac Jones and rumbled 48 yards for the game-winning score, stunning Patriots moneyline bettors (+110 at FOX Bet, bet $10 to win $21 total) and wagerers who took New England plus the 2.5 points.

“Stanford band is nowhere in sight,” an announcer said as Chandler Jones ran toward the end zone.

There were some ironies with the last play.

It was the second career interception for Jones in his 11th season. Jones further tormented New England backers as he was the franchise’s No. 21 pick in 2012 and spent four seasons with the Patriots.

Jones’ heroics, in part, came about because he missed an open-field tackle on Stevenson on the play.

Stevenson scored the tying TD with 3:43 to go on a 34-yard run, and Meyers went from hero to goat in a span of a few plays.

Meyers set up the score with a 39-yard catch and caught the tying two-point conversion.

The Raiders win was especially sweet for at least one bettor.

The miscue conjures memories of the Giants fumbling away a game against the Eagles in 1978. Instead of taking a knee, the Giants tried a running play and fumbled, which was returned by Herm “You play to win the game” Edwards for the winning touchdown.

Dak, Cowboys stunned

Jacksonville Jaguars bettors were celebrating Sunday, much to the chagrin of Dallas Cowboys backers.

The Jaguars (+160 moneyline at FOX Bet, bet $10 to win $26 total) shocked “America’s Team” 40-34 in overtime. 

Dallas took a 34-31 lead with three minutes to go and then recovered a fumble with 90 seconds to go.

And still lost. Irate callers to Cowboys radio shows are still on hold.

The Jaguars were 3.5-point underdogs but stunned the Cowboys behind Trevor Lawrence‘s four touchdown passes.

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott threw the game-winning pass … unfortunately, it was a pick six that Jacksonville safety Rayshawn Jenkins returned 51 yards to end the game in overtime.

Lawrence’s fourth TD pass gave the Jaguars a 31-27 lead with 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

Dallas responded with Prescott’s short TD pass to Noah Brown for a 34-31 lead with three minutes to go.

The Cowboys appeared on the verge of victory when Lawrence, after a nice scramble, lost a fumble with about 90 seconds to go.

All Dallas needed to do was pick up a first down and run out the clock for Cowboys moneyline bettors (-189 at FOX Bet, bet $10 to win $15.29 total).

The Cowboys ran two plays for no net gain, then inexplicably threw a deep incomplete pass, stopping the clock and saving the Jaguars a time out.

Jacksonville had the ball near midfield with 17 seconds to go when Dallas inexplicably – a word muttered often on said call-in shows – allowed Lawrence to complete a pass for 19 yards and the Jaguars called time out with five seconds left (see earlier mention of saving the Jaguars a time out).

Jaguars bettors celebrated when Riley Patterson kicked a 48-yard field goal to force overtime.

They celebrated again with the pick six.

You like that, Vikings moneyline bettors?

The Minnesota Vikings executed the biggest comeback in NFL history, rallying from a 33-0 halftime deficit to beat the Indianapolis Colts 39-36 in overtime on Saturday.

That was thrilling news for Vikings moneyline bettors, but it was an exhilarating comeback that fell just short for Colts moneyline bettors (+160 at FOX Bet, bet $10 to win $26 total) and Minnesota backers who laid the 3.5 points.

Things looked bleak for Minnesota bettors as the Vikings trailed 33-0 at the break. The Colts returned a blocked punt for a touchdown and returned an interception of Kirk Cousins for another score in the first half.

But the Vikings staged the largest comeback in NFL history to win 39-36 in overtime. The previous record was Buffalo‘s rally from 32 points down to beat the Houston Oilers 41-38 in overtime in the playoffs after the 1992 season.

Minnesota scored 29 consecutive points in the second half – 22 in the fourth quarter – to force overtime. 

Leading 36-28, the Colts hurt themselves by losing a fumble at their own 38, then, bypassing a 54-yard field goal attempt, turned the ball over on downs with 2 ½ minutes to go.

On the next play, Dalvin Cook took a short swing pass 64 yards for a touchdown.

Still, despite everything that had gone wrong in the second half, Colts moneyline bettors held out hope as the Vikings needed to convert a two-point conversion.

But Cousins converted with a short pass to tight end T.J. Hockenson.

The Colts still had enough time for another mistake to wipe out any hopes of winning in regulation. On fourth and 1 at their own 34 with 1:20 to go, Indianapolis lined up to go for it but jumped offside. Punt.

Each team punted in OT before the final possession. Out of time outs, Cousins completed a pass to Adam Thielen for 21 yards then a 13-yard pass to Justin Jefferson. The Colts made matters worse by getting called for defensive delay of game, giving the Vikings five more yards.

With three seconds left in OT, Greg Joseph kicked a 40-yard field goal, much to the dismay of Colts moneyline bettors and Vikings backers who gave 3.5 points, who lost by the slimmest of margins in the 1,00th game in Vikings history.

Bettors shouldn’t be surprised that Cousins pulled out the win. 

The last team to overcome a deficit of more than 24 points in a regular season game was Washington in 2015. They rallied for a 31-30 win over Tampa Bay on Oct. 15, 2015. 

That was when Cousins screamed his famous “You like that?” line while walking to the locker room.

Josh being Josh

The Dolphins (+4.5 first half) trailed the Bills 14-13 with seven seconds to go in the second quarter.

Then Josh Allen did … well, Josh Allen things.

Miami trailed 14-6 midway through the second quarter but responded with a 10-play, 75-yard drive capped by Salvon Ahmed‘s 11-yard TD run with 2:59 to go in the half to make it 14-13. Miami first-half backers who took the 4.5 were covering.

Quarterback Allen and the Bills took over at their 18. Buffalo, with completions of 13 and 19 yards by Allen and consecutive defensive penalties on Miami (holding, offside), marched down the field.

From the Miami 4, Allen started in the pocket, rolled right, and, as he was running out of real estate with Dolphins in hot pursuit, zinged the football to James Cook – Dalvin Cook’s younger brother – for a TD on the final play of the half.

Bills 21, Dolphins 13.

Miami first-half bettors who were at the game ripped up their tickets, making it snow. More on that in a bit.

Allen’s snow joke

Allen wasn’t done tormenting Dolphins moneyline backers (+240, bet $10 to win $34 total).

Miami kicked a field goal early in the fourth quarter to take a 29-21 lead.

Buffalo took over at its 25-yard line. Allen promptly fumbled on the first play, but the Bills recovered.

Allen scrambled for 44 yards to the Miami 13. Allen ran for five yards on the next play, and Miami was called for unnecessary roughness for shoving Allen out of bounds.

Two plays later, Allen hit tight end, Dawson Knox for a 5-yard TD, cutting the deficit to 29-27.

Guess who got the ball on the two-point attempt?

Allen leaped over the pile and reached out with the ball, then lost his grip on it. The conversion attempt was originally ruled a fumble but, upon further review, was ruled a successful conversion. Tie game.

Not for long.

Miami punted after picking up one first down, pinning the Bills at their 7 with just under six minutes to go.

Remember who was playing quarterback?

In a heavy snowfall, Allen and the Bills methodically marched down the field and, aided by a pass interference penalty with less than a minute to go, kicked the game-winning 25-yard field goal on the final play.

Missed kick pays for moneyline bettors

Kansas City‘s Harrison Butker is one of the best kickers in NFL history – he ranks second in career made field-goal percentage – but suffered an ankle injury that caused him to miss games this season.

Butker missed a field goal or extra point in his first five games back from the injury.

He missed an extra point against Houston at the end of the first half as the Texans took a 14-13 lead into the locker room.

Butker’s miss was music to the ears of Texans first-half moneyline bettors, who cashed in at +450.  

Chiefs moneyline bettors (-1000, bet $10 to win $11 total) ended up covering when Houston’s QB Davis Mills lost a fumble in OT, then running back Jerick McKinnon scored on a 26-yard run on the next play.

Texans moneyline bettors (+600, bet $10 to win $70 total) saw their chance to cash in disappear.

Lions pay off again

The Detroit Lions beat the New York Jets 20-17 for their sixth win in seven games.

The Lions have been money recently against the spread (ATS), as Detroit has covered for seven straight games.

Oh-fer dooms SMU

College bowl season is here, and bettors are paying attention.

The SMU Mustangs scored a touchdown with eight seconds to go against BYU in the New Mexico Bowl, cutting their deficit to 24-23 on Saturday.

The Mustangs elected to go for a two-point conversion and the win. SMU was 0-for-3 on two-point conversions this season.

Make that 0-for-4.

After multiple time outs, SMU’s Tanner Mordecai got tackled on a delayed quarterback draw over a yard short of the end zone.

Bad news for SMU moneyline bettors (-213, bet $10 to win $14.69 total) and spread bettors who laid the 3.5 points.

BYU won despite not completing a pass in the second half (0-for-2, one interception). The Cougars did not attempt a pass in the final 26 minutes of the game.

It was fitting the game came down to the final play. How close was the first half of the New Mexico Bowl?

The score was tied at 10 at halftime. The teams were also dead even in total yards (137), first downs (11) and total plays (33).

You know who loved that? Bettors who took BYU first half +2 and the first-half Under 32.5 combined points.

Stay tuned for more of the wackiness!

And if you want to join in on the fun (or madness), head over to FOX Bet for all your wagers.

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