Minnesota Vikings (2-12 SU 5-7-2 ATS) vs. Washington Redskins (5-9 SU 7-7 ATS) Week 16 NFL FedEx Field, Landover, MD, 1 PM ET Saturday December 24, 2011 on FOX
by Jason Green, Sports Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: MIN +6.5/WASH -6.5
The Washington Redskins snapped their 2-game losing streak with a great road win last week over the New York Giants and there is a good chance they will win their 2nd straight facing a reeling Minnesota Vikings team that has lost 6 in a row. The Minnesota defense has really struggled on the season and in their last 3 games they have given up at least 34 points per game.
Another thing the Redskins have going for them in this game is that Vikings' RB Adrian Peterson is coming off a hurt ankle and he has failed to rush for over 100 yards in his last 4 games.
Last Sunday the Redskins beat the New York Giants and the Vikings lost badly 42-20 to the New Orleans Saints.
Rex Grossman did not have the best game against the Giants, but was 15/24 for 185 yards with 1 TD even though he did throw 2 INT. The Vikings and their decimated pass defense rank 30th in the league and while Grossman will not have a huge game he will play well and limit his mistakes. Grossman has been plagued by the INT this season, but luckily in this game that will not be a problem with a Minnesota secondary that ranks dead last in the league with only 6 picks on the season.
Jared Allen is the main guy the Redskins' offensive line has to worry about, as he ranks 2nd in the league in sacks. I don't think he will be shut out in the sack department, but the Washington offensive line will keep him in check and give Grossman time in the pocket.
The Redskins have really struggled to run the ball this season and I think that trend will continue in this game facing the Vikings and their 10th ranked run defense. Rookie RB Roy Helu Jr. had his streak of 3 games rushing for at least 100 yards snapped last week and he will not break the 100-yard barrier in this game. He's also banged up, so that should slow him down as well.
The way Christian Ponder has played under center for the last 2 games the Vikes may want to use a high draft pick on another QB when the draft rolls around. In his last 2 games he has failed to pass for over 120 yards and in those 2 games he does have 4 TD, but also has 4 INT.
The Redskins' pass defense ranks 14th in the league and gave up 257 passing yards last week to the Giants, but they came up with 3 picks. Look for Ponder to have more than 120 passing yards, but he will not have a big game.
The Redskins and their 15th ranked run defense hope that Peterson is still not 100% and there is a good chance of that. The Vikes' RB has not looked like himself in the past few games, but I think he will have a big game. If he does not the Vikes are in trouble, as it has been shown that Ponder cannot carry the team with his arm.
The Vikings only have 1 road win on the season, but out of the Redskins 5 wins only 2 have come at FedEx Field.
This season the Redskins have an Over/Under record of 6-8 and the Vikings have an Over/Under record of 9-5.
The Vikings are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall, 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 games as an underdog of 3.5-10 points, and they have an Over record of 5-1 in their last 6 games.
The Redskins are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall, 0-7 ATS in their last 7 games as a home favorite, and they have an Over record of 4-1 in their last 5 games.
Jason's Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I see this being a very close game throughout with the Skins getting the win, but the Vikings getting the cover. Bet the Vikes plus the points.
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