An interesting cross-conference game between the Minnesota Vikings and Buffalo Bills will take place Sunday afternoon in Highmark Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. and will be televised on Fox.
The Vikings sit atop the NFC North and are No. 2 in the NFC standings with a 7-1 record. They have won six games in a row, including a 20-17 victory over the Washington Commanders last weekend. It led to a notable celebration on the plane for quarterback Kirk Cousins after he bested his former squad.
As for the home team, the Bills are still pacing the AFC standings with a 6-2 record after dropping a game last week. They suffered a 20-17 defeat to the New York Jets, though their primary concern right now is the health of QB1.
Josh Allen is listed as day-to-day with an elbow injury, and his status for Sunday remains up in the air. Allen’s potential absence also takes some of the luster from a matchup that could have been a potential Super Bowl preview.
The health of Allen has caused the betting line to plummet from its opening spread of 9.5 points. Caesars Sportsbook currently lists the Bills as a 3.5-point home favorite with an over/under of 43.5.
Let’s take a closer look at the odds and trends:
Buffalo Bills vs. Minnesota Vikings
Time/TV: 1 p.m. Sunday, FOX
Point spread (from Caesars Sportsbook): Bills -3.5
Money line: Vikings +152/Bills -180
Analysis: In most cases, this would seem like a prime sell-high spot on the Vikings while also buying a bit low on the Bills. But it is certainly tough to have any conviction behind a bet or pick without knowing whether Allen will play.
That said, the spread dropping six full points over the course of the week would seem to indicate that Allen is unlikely to take a snap on Sunday. Case Keenum, who has been in the league since 2012, is slated to get the start if Allen is unable to go.
The Vikings are 3-4-1 against the spread so far this season, but they’ve only been an underdog once during an eventual 24-7 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles. The spread still being above a field goal feels like a gift at this point, especially since we won’t need the points in the end. The Vikings should secure their seventh win in a row on Sunday.
Prediction: Vikings 23, Bills 17