Something very strange happened last week: The New England Patriots lost a football game. The defending Super Bowl champions fell 27-20 to the Miami Dolphins as 11.5-point road favorites. With that result, the Patriots (10-3 SU, 8-5 ATS) are now the second-best team in the AFC. They’ll meet the No. 1 Pittsburgh Steelers (11-2 SU, 6-7 ATS) this Sunday at 4:25 PM ET on CBS, with the Steelers getting three points at home. Tight end Rob Gronkowski returns for New England after serving his one-game suspension in last week’s loss to Miami.

Just about every matchup on the Week 15 NFL odds board has some importance with the playoffs just around the corner. Here are four more games to watch out for, all times Eastern


Saturday: Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs (8:25 PM, NFLN)

Whoever wins this game will put a headlock on the AFC West. The Chiefs (7-6 SU and ATS) are technically in first right now, but they’re 1.5-point home dogs against the Chargers (7-6 SU, 7-5-1 ATS), who’ve won seven of their last nine games straight up and against the spread.


Sunday: Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks (4:05 PM, FOX)

The NFC West lead is up for grabs in this battle. It’s the Rams (9-4 SU, 8-5 ATS) with a one-game lead on the Seahawks (8-5 SU, 5-7-1 ATS), but despite all the injuries in the Seattle lineup, they’ve moved from a pick ‘em at the open to 3-point favorites on the NFL betting lines.


Sunday: Dallas Cowboys at Oakland Raiders (8:30 PM, NBC)

The Cowboys (7-6 SU and ATS) can’t afford a loss on Sunday Night Football if they want to stay in the NFC Wild Card hunt. The Raiders (6-7 SU, 4-8-1 ATS) are even more desperate after losing to Kansas City last week. Dallas is ahead on the NFL lines at –3.


Monday: Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (8:30 PM, ESPN)

It’s the Falcons (8-5 SU, 6-7 ATS) holding down the 6-seed in the NFC, and they can make life miserable for both Seattle and Dallas with a win over the Buccaneers (4-9 SU, 3-9-1 ATS), who have already been eliminated from playoff contention. Atlanta is holding firm as a 6-point road chalk.


*Odds as of December 15, 2017