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This is one of those games that I almost don’t want to make any pick at all. The Steelers have been less than stellar all year, and the Falcons just can’t seem to take advantage of their division being weak. I am a huge fan of Kenny Pickett and the growth he’s showing. He has a beautiful connection with George Pickens that can develop into one of the best for years to come. On the other side, I just can’t understand why Atlanta hasn’t allowed Desmond Ridder to get valuable reps in a season where we’ve seen Marcus Mariota do strange things.
I am going with the home team here. The Falcons keep applying pressure on the Buccaneers for first place in a horrible division.
What in the world has happened to Russell Wilson? In every sense of the word, he’s been disappointing this year. There are reports that he has lost most of, if not the entire locker room with his play and lack of connection to the team. The Ravens suffered a heartbreaking loss to Jacksonville last week, and want to get things back on track. Lamar Jackson wants to put his Twitter beef behind him and get back to winning.
Baltimore covers the spread and wins big at home. The Broncos are on fire, with no one to put it out.
Aaron Rodgers has made it clear that he feels like he owns the Bears. His 23-5 record would prove that to be closer to true than not. But this season has been the worst of Rodgers’ career since he came into the league. Some would blame it on a thumb injury, some would blame it on a lack of chemistry with his receivers early on; either way, it’s been bad. Justin Fields hopes to see the field again this weekend after missing last week’s game. When he’s been active, he has been impressive lately, using his legs and his arm to help put his team in position to win late in games.
I am going with the home team to beat the spread and steal the upset.
The Lions are a tough team. Bills Mafia learned a hard lesson Thanksgiving afternoon when they beat the spread and forced the game to be won on a last-minute Tyler Bass field goal. They have a strong running game and a solid defense that allows them to always be in games. Jacksonville is tough, too. Trevor Lawrence is showing growth, and last week beat Lamar Jackson in a very competitive matchup. But the Lions just have something about them.
The home team wins this game and beats the spread, sending Jacksonville back to Duval county.
Well, this is the moment a lot of people have been waiting for: the return of Deshaun Watson to meaningful football. And to bring it full circle, he’s starting his return in the place it all started for him in the first place. He spent a year inactive on the Texans roster, then there were his legal troubles, and now starts the first chapter of his new life in Cleveland. From strictly a football perspective, Watson is very talented, and should provide a boost to a Browns offense that’s loaded with talent. The Texans are struggling right now to find anything that works outside of running back Dameon Pierce.
Watson’s return to Houston will be good for his football life. The Browns will win convincingly and cover the spread.
Is Mike White the answer for the Jets? He certainly looked the part last week against the Bears. After benching Zach Wilson due to a disappointing 10-3 loss, the Jets offense looked explosive and fun to watch (I can’t believe I just typed that). But the Vikings are proving to be one of the elite teams in the league. Justin Jefferson should be mentioned in the MVP conversation, regardless of what quarterbacks dominate the conversation.
Vikings win and cover the spread.
I said it last week, and I’ll say it again: Brian Daboll’s luck is running out at this point in the season. He started off the right way. The team came out motivated and played solid defense on their way to a fast start. But now that the dust has settled, his team has dropped two games in a row, and in their division, he really can’t afford to lose too many more. The Commanders have found life with one of my favorite stories around the league, Taylor Heinicke. The organization disappointed me in their lackluster memorial of Sean Taylor, but on the field, they’ve been playing very hard.
Washington and New York switch places this week in the divisional standings. Commanders win in New Jersey.
If any team has benefited from their schedule, it’s the Eagles. They’ve shown us that they’re not the team their record has shown when they lost to the Commanders and barely escaped the Colts. This week, they have to stop the freight train that is Derrick Henry. The Titans are the best team remaining on their schedule for the regular season, and I think they prove that the Eagles won’t survive in the playoffs against real competition.
The Titans upset the Eagles and turn their dreams into nightmares.
Cooper Kupp, Aaron Donald, Matthew Stafford. When you lose these players, you might as well pack it up for the season. It looks like the Lions will get a Top 5 pick at the Rams’ expense. Meanwhile, Geno Smith is still making his case for Comeback Player of the Year. I’d be shocked if the Rams find a way to win this game.
Seahawks will cover the spread easily.
This is the first of two games that Bills fans will really want to keep an eye on. Going into this game, the Dolphins are second in the AFC East, but will jump back to first place with a win over the 49ers due to holding the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Bills. The 49ers have a very good roster, and one of the most dangerous offenses in the league when they are firing on all cylinders. Miami will probably be without their starting offensive tackles at the worst possible time. Look for a huge game from Nick Bosa and the 49ers defense.
Miami’s defense will be tested and will fail miserably. The 49ers will win and cover the spread.
This is the second game that will have the attention of Bills fans. While it’s known that I’m not a believer in the Bengals, I would love for them to do the Bills a favor and beat the Chiefs to put Buffalo back in the No. 1 seed for the conference. How likely will that be? This game is probably the most evenly-matched game of the weekend, and can truly go either way. Ja’Marr Chase is back in the lineup to help Joe Burrow, but Patrick Mahomes still has Travis Kelce.
I’m picking the Chiefs to win this game and cover the spread, but I’d love to be wrong on this one.
Josh Jacobs has made himself a household name this season, while setting himself up for a nice payday this upcoming offseason. He leads the league in rushing after ripping the hearts out of the Seahawks last week in an overtime win. But the Chargers are getting healthy and gaining momentum at the right time. Keenan Allen and Justin Herbert looked the part last Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals, but the Raiders are better than the Cardinals, and won’t find a way to lose this game. Derek Carr needs these wins if he wants to keep his job next season.
Las Vegas takes the upset. Expect big numbers from Davante Adams.
Prime time just doesn’t have the same excitement as it used to. The Colts get the Sunday night slot just one week after they played on Monday Night Football and lost to the Steelers. The Cowboys are playing well, and are holding on to the first wild card spot in the NFC. This game should not be difficult for them to win. Although Jonathan Taylor is playing better since Jeff Saturday took over, there isn’t much else to be excited about when it comes to the team. The Cowboys are better in every sense.
I don’t expect the Cowboys to cover this double digit spread, but they win and stay on the Eagles’ heels.