Week 13 Picks
Last Weeks Record: 10-6
Season Record: 20-10
Saints at Falcons – Saints, This game means much more for than Saints than it does for the Falcons. With New Orleans on the outside looking in for the crowded NFC playoff picture and Atlanta sitting pretty at the top, I believe that the Saints will come out with more intensity and beat the Falcons for the second time this year.
Seahawks at Bears – Bears, Chicago looks like a tricky team to figure out; they play terrible against San Francisco one week and then like a Super Bowl contender against Minnesota the next. The reason for this incredible transformation is Jay Cutler and Cutler alone. He may be a “hot-head” at times, but when he’s leading the Bears, the can be defined by how they played against the Vikings, a Super Bowl contender.
Texans at Titans – Texans, Tennessee just fired their offense coordinator Chris Palmer. Something had to change after that dreadful loss to the Jaguars. Maybe the firing will ignite a spark (pun intended) underneath the Titans, but I just don’t envision a way for them to win this game with the lack of talent on their roster.
Patriots at Dolphins – Patriots, Read this stat before you bet against the Patriots in the second half of the season. They are 19-0 in the back half of the year dating back to 2010. Their offense is firing on all cylinders, and their defense has forced timely turnovers, especially in the last three weeks. The Dolphins had a great win last week against the Seahawks (despite some field maintenance issues), but with the division title within reach with a win, the Patriots will soon be crowned AFC East champs once again.
Jaguars at Bills – Jaguars, With Chad Henne leading the way these past two weeks, Jacksonville has actually looked liked a competent NFL team with a win over the Titans and a narrow loss to Houston. Henne has also put up great numbers, and if he keeps this up, he could very well end up being the Jags quarterback in 2013. Not to mention that they just picked up Jason Babin off waivers, who should be able to come in and make an immediate impact on the defensive side of the ball.
Colts at Lions – Lions, Detroit has played well in each of their past two games despite both of them being losses. A 24-20 loss to the Packers and a crushing overtime defeat against the Texans all but crushed Detroit’s playoff aspirations. However, with a home game against a Colts team that has looked inconsistent recently, a win might just provide a glimmer of hope for the Lions. And also screw up the AFC wildcard picture even more.
Panthers at Chiefs – Panthers, Think about this: the Chiefs starting quarterback now (Brady Quinn) could not beat out the Jets backup quarterback (Tim Tebow) last year. Therefore, technically, the Chiefs starting quarterback would be the third string on the 4-7 Jets. Now, enough with the crazy facts, both of these teams are bad, but the Panthers are just less bad. Carolina will leave Kansas City with a win, and a worse draft pick.
Vikings at Packers – Packers, Both of these teams looked terrible last week, and neither of them are as bad as they played. This game will be interesting, but December is the time where contenders come to play, and pretenders fade away. Based on my pick here, I think you can figure out which team is which.
49ers at Rams – 49ers, Colin Kaepernick will keep on rolling against a suspect Rams defense, and the Niners defense should be able to shut down Sam Bradford and co. this week. Unlike last time, San Francisco will blow out St. Louis, and actually provide a decision in the game (unlike the tie a few weeks ago).
Cardinals at Jets – Cardinals, There are a lot of similarities between these two teams, they both stink. The Jets have the 28th ranked offense in the league and the Cardinals have the 31st. The main difference is that Arizona actually has a top 10 defense, while New York hangs out in the back half of the league in that category too. The Cardinals snap their 7 game losing streak while the rumblings Rex Ryan’s job begin to get louder.
Buccaneers at Broncos – Buccaneers, Tampa Bay almost pulled off the upset against the best team in the NFC last week, and I believe they can do it this week against one of the best from the other conference. The Broncos had a tough time beating the Chiefs last week (17-9), while Doug Martin and Josh Freeman continue to run wild all over the NFL. The Bucs may not be used to playing in Denver, but they will be used to the feeling when the leave, a hard-earned win.
Steelers at Ravens – Ravens, The Steelers have been absolutely atrocious this season without Ben Roethlisberger. In their past 2 games, they have punted 14 times and turned the ball over 11 more, while only scoring 12 points per contest. Now, none of these numbers surprise me when your quarterbacks are named Byron Leftwich and Charlie Batch, but with Big Ben looking less likely to play this weekend, expect more of the same from the Steelers offense.
Bengals at Chargers – Bengals, Cincinnati has looked fantastic throughout their three game winning streak, outscoring their opponents by the score of 93-29. With the Chargers having almost nothing to play for, and the Bengals vying for a playoff bid, I believe Andy Dalton leads Cincinnati to a much needed victory for their playoff push. Fun fact: Dalton just joined Peyton Manning and Dan Marino as the only quarterbacks to throw for at least 20 touchdowns in each of their first 2 seasons, not bad company.
Browns at Raiders – Browns, I’m not sure the best way to say this next thought: The Browns forced 8 turnovers against the Steelers last week. OR: The Steelers gave the ball to the Browns 8 times last week. Either way, the Browns won, and get to play a team that’s actually known for turning the ball over. Don’t expect the ratings to be too high for this one though.
Eagles at Cowboys – Cowboys, Crazy fact: the Philadelphia Phillies have won a game more recently than the Philadelphia Eagles… and their season ended 2 months ago! Since starting out 3-1, the Eagles have dropped 7 straight, and with Andy Reid (more accurately the whole team) losing interest and LeSean Mccoy still out with a concussion, expect that loss total to keep climbing. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Phillies win their next game before the Eagles do. Okay maybe I would be a little surprised, but still.
Giants at Redskins – Giants, No one has looked more spectacular than RGIII this year, and a part of me really wants to pick the Redskins because of that very reason. However, after a much needed bye week, the Giants team looked unstoppable against the Packers. Washington’s defense has been bad all year long, and with a reenergized Eli Manning, expect him to take full advantage of that. New York’s annual November swoon has ended, and their end of the year tear has already started.