Week 16 in the NFL concludes with Broncos vs. Raiders on Monday Night Football. For this game and every other primetime contest, we’ll break down the sports betting lines and recommend where to place your bets at DraftKings Sportsbook, BetStars, and FanDuel Sportsbook.
Keep an eye on injury news right up until kick off since things can change quickly in the NFL. Any player listed as questionable may see limited action or not suit up at all if he doesn’t respond well in warm-ups.
Week 16 Monday Night Football Betting Odds
Denver Broncos at Oakland Raiders
After stunning the Steelers at home in Week 14, the Raiders resumed their status as the doormat of the AFC with a double-digit loss to injury-depleted Cincinnati last Sunday.
With a fan base that is becoming increasingly disenfranchised as the Raiders prepare to leave Oakland, there will be little to derive from “home field advantage” as the Broncos bring their elite pass rush to Oakland Coliseum for a Monday night matchup.
Compounding the problem, Derek Carr has routinely struggled to throw under pressure. Denver is seventh in the NFL in sack rate (7.8%), and the Raiders have yielded the third-most sacks (48) this season. While OLB Shane Ray (illness) is questionable, the Broncos expect to get OLB Shaq Barrett (hip) back from a four-week absence to bolster that pass rush.
Carr has only been marginally better at home with a 98.5 passer rating and 12:5 TD:INT ratio. Plus, the Broncos defense has traveled well lately. Denver is holding QBs to an 87.3 passer rating with 21 sacks over seven road games.
Then, Denver is limiting RBs to 4.4 YPC with three rushing TDs allowed on the road. Moreover, they have not yielded a rushing TD at all since Week 6. Oakland may struggle to generate any running lanes with LG Kelechi Osemele (toe) questionable and RG Gabe Jackson (elbow) out. That diminishes a unit that ranks 31st in power run blocking.
Doug Martin is leading the Raiders backfield and averaging a modest 4.0 YPC and 36.9 rushing YPG. Jalen Richard is mixing in on passing downs but has lost two fumbles over Oakland’s last three games. Also, Denver has allowed the seventh-fewest receptions (68) to RBs this season.
With Martavis Bryant (knee) done for the season and Amari Cooper traded to the Cowboys, Jordy Nelson is playing out the string as the Raiders’ top WR. He’s drawn a team-high 26 targets over the last three weeks and faces a Broncos secondary that will be without elite slot CB Chris Harris (leg) and LCB Isaac Yiadom (shoulder).
Perimeter CBs Bradley Roby and Tramaine Brock have struggled this season, but the Broncos still rank third in DVOA pass defense thanks mostly to the constant pressure generated from their front seven.
Ultimately, the best way to attack Denver is over the middle and down the seams. This sets Raiders TE Jared Cook up for a nice game. Cook caught seven passes for over 100 yards in consecutive games before posting a dud in Cincy. But it’s worth noting he played on 88 percent of offensive snaps and is running 38 pass routes per game over his last three appearances. He’s the best bet for production from the Raiders’ roster in DFS contests on DraftKings and FanDuel.
The Raiders’ passing attack rounds out with Seth Roberts and Marcell Ateman. Both could see work out of the slot. Yet Denver is still playing well in that area of the field despite the season-ending injury to Harris.
The star of the Broncos’ offense is UDFA Phillip Lindsay, a Pro Bowl selection with some of the best advanced metrics of any RB in the league this year. Lindsay shredded the Raiders’ slow defense for 107 rushing yards on just 14 carries (7.6 YPC) earlier this year and is averaging 5.4 YPC on the season.
Oakland has given up the second-most rushing yards (1,683) to opposing RBs this season and ranks 27th in DVOA rush defense. The coaching staff stuck with Lindsay despite the offensive line struggling the last two weeks. The Colorado product saw 18 touches while second-round pick Royce Freeman mixed in for five touches last Sunday. Overall, Denver’s offensive line leads the NFL in rush yards created and is seventh in adjusted line yards.
The Broncos’ passing attack has faded dramatically since Emmanuel Sanders (Achilles) was lost for the season. Courtland Sutton has struggled in a No. 1 role and is questionable Monday night with a quad injury.
Sutton has been outplayed at times by Utah product Tim Patrick, another big target for Case Keenum at 6-foot-4, 212 pounds. Patrick has drawn 18 targets the last two weeks while new slot WR DaeSean Hamilton leads the team with 21 targets and is soaking up opportunities with Sanders out.
Both WRs could thrive since the Raiders may be without starting RCB Gareon Conley (concussion) and are mixing ineffective options at slot CB while ranking 29th against the position this season.
Since the Raiders are 31st in DVOA pass defense and 32nd against opposing TEs, Matt LaCosse (foot) could have a role as long as he’s active. The 6-foot-6 TE is a red zone specialist, and Oakland has coughed up a league-high nine receiving TDs to his position.
The Raiders are 2-5 at home this year and have shown some backbone at the Coliseum despite losing the loyalty of their fans at times. The Broncos are 3-2 over their last five road games and were competitive in KC. They’re now 4-3 against the spread away from Denver.
Neither team is generating consistent offense. Both are bottom 10 in drive success rate (DSR), and Oakland ranks 26th in points per red zone trip.
Defensively, Denver is ninth in DSR and allows the ninth-fewest TDs per drive. Oakland, however, allows the second-most TDs per drive.
We’re taking the Broncos (-2.5 on FanDuel Sportsbook) to cover by a FG where applicable. On sportsbooks where this is at a full 3, it might be wise to buy a half point to ensure that you cash in a close game.
As far as the point total goes, it’s worth noting that only three of 14 games involving Denver this season have gone over the total. The Broncos play at the second-slowest pace in the league when leading by 7-plus points, and the Raiders allow the third-slowest pace of play in the second half; that’s when they’re often trailing.
Expect a run-heavy approach from Denver to keep the total Under (43) and allow Lindsay to hit his aforementioned prop bet while leading the Broncos to a low-scoring victory.