NFL Week 15 Predictions: Big Spread Season Edition

Week 15 started with Lamar Jackson practically wrapping up the NFL MVP award for this season after another game with five touchdown passes and breaking the single-season rushing record for a QB.

The Ravens also covered the 17-point spread with a 42-21 victory. It was Week 15’s biggest spread, but there are three other games that could close with a double-digit spread, bringing the season count to 36 such games through Week 15. Has it felt like we’ve had more of these games this season than in past years as the elites continue to crush the weak? I had to look since I’m pressed for time and not really interested in highlighting any of the Week 15 games here.

NFL games with a spread of 10+ thru Week 15 (Source: Pro Football Reference)

  • 2019 – 33 to 36 (pending)
  • 2018 – 29
  • 2017 – 26
  • 2016 – 14
  • 2015 – 13
  • 2014 – 18
  • 2013 – 22
  • 2012 – 23
  • 2011 – 36
  • 2010 – 17
  • 2009 – 53
  • 2008 – 27
  • 2007 – 36
  • 2006 – 32
  • 2005 – 22
  • 2004 – 20
  • 2003 – 16
  • 2002 – 17
  • 2001 – 24

So by the week’s end we could match the high total of 36 games in 2011 (also done in 2007), but what the hell was going on in 2009 when there were 53 such games? That certainly was a year of the have-nots with the 2-14 Lions (10), 5-11 Raiders (7), and 5-11 Browns (7) accounting for 24 of those games. Surprisingly, the 1-15 Rams had six such spreads and the 3-13 Buccaneers had five.

That was also the season Indianapolis and New Orleans both started 13-0 on their way to meeting in the Super Bowl.┬áThe Colts and Saints play each other on Monday night, a game in which Drew Brees should break the record for most career touchdown passes. I wrote about his stealthy case as the GOAT QB earlier this week, so check that out if you haven’t.

NFL Week 15 Predictions

I thought the Jets could cover the spread, but a couple of turnovers by Sam Darnold proved costly.


On Bills-Steelers, it sure is weird to see Buffalo in an important Sunday night game. The two teams are pretty similar in that they win on defense first and have been taking full advantage of the schedules they’ve been dealt this year. The winner of this game will be able to say their best win this season was…this game. I like the Steelers defense at home under the lights, and with Duck Hodges not playing with fear like Mason Rudolph. The Steelers have been smart in limiting the pass attempts in recent weeks, and Hodges is not afraid to throw a deep ball to give his receivers a chance to make plays. It’s the closest call of Week 15 and should be a pretty evenly matched game.