As we head into week 14 in the NFL we have several teams in contention for the playoffs. Some just trying to get in while others are jockeying for better position. It’s always one of the best times of the year between the bowl games and the coming NFL playoffs.
Vikings at Lions – The Lions have been a hot side this week. Lot’s of sharp action on the Lions all week. Many feel that the Vikings are a Paper Tiger. But don’t forget Minnesota went into Buffalo and knocked off the Bills. No easy task. Unlike the Lions, the Bills actually have a good defense to go along with their good offense. We don’t think this is the mortal lock others seem to think it is. Tread carefully. If +3 becomes within reach, say laying no more than -120 we’d take a shot at the Vikings.
Jets at Bills – Our model has the Bills winning but not by enough. We expect a fight from the Jets who are fighting for their playoff lives. There are several ways to get a number on an NFL game. All of them come up less than 10 (yards per play line is -6 with home field). Jets +10
Ravens vs. Steelers – The Steelers have a 4% chance of making the playoffs. They’d need to run the table to do so. But obviously, running the table would have to start with winning this one. They couldn’t ask for more, getting to face the Ravens with no Lamar Jackson. Using data from the last 7 games only, our model has the Steelers on top by 3 and that’s WITH Jackson in the lineup. We’ll take our chances here. Steelers -2
Eagles at Giants – Huge NFC East clash. According to an article in the Theathletic, The Giants have a 96% chance to make the playoffs if they can beat Philly once (they play them again week 17) and also beat the Colts and Commanders. The Eagles haven’t been dominant on the road this year. Last time out was 17-16 over the Colts. We give the Giants a shot here. Giants +7 -115.
Browns at Bengals -Safe to say the Bengals have had this one circled since Halloween. That’s when the Browns handed them their worst loss of the season. The Bengals have a 92% chances of making the playoffs while the Browns have a 3% chance. Watson still shaking the rust off. We expect the Bengals to play like a playoff team this week and get a little revenge for that embarrassing loss. Seems like a bargain at less than a TD. Bengals -5.5
Jaguars at Titans – This game circled as of this Thursday writing due to the questionable status of Trevor Lawrence. The Titans will be playoff bound as the winners of the AFC South. But they are 1-5 against teams over .500 this year. Fortunately for them, the Jags are 4-8 and have lost 22 of their last 23 road games. Look for the Titans to get the bad taste out of their mouths from the Eagles beatdown last week with a convincing win here. Titans -4
Texans at Cowboys – As bad as the Texans are we want no part of laying 18 points on an NFL game. We’ll lean towards the Texans just for that reason but in the real world this game is a total pass. Texans +18.5
Dolphins at Chargers – (note this game flexed to prime time) – The Chargers are still alive for the playoffs with roughly a 30% chance. Dolphins looking to bounce back from their ass kicking to the 49ers. Things get dicey for the Dolphins looking ahead as they play next Saturday in Buffalo. Short week after flying home from California. That makes getting the win in this one even more crucial. We think they do just that, comfortably, banged up offensive line and all. Dolphins -3.5
Panthers at Seahawks – Seahawks chasing the 49ers with no room for error. Panthers playing out the season. After this one Seattle has the 49ers, Chiefs and Jets in three consecutive weeks that will surely decide their fate, but they first need to get this one. Seahawks -3.5.
Bucs at 49ers – This game became slightly more interesting when it became clear that it would be Purdy and not Garoppolo at QB for the Niners. But it shouldn’t matter. This Brady led offense is terrible. They have had trouble scoring all year. How to you suppose they’ll fare against the best “D” in the league? Right. Not well. Though the Bucs defense isn’t too shabby either and they get a rookie QB to tee off on. 49ers -3.5
Chiefs at Broncos – Chiefs likely win this one. Afterall, Mahomes is 13-0 vs. the Broncos. We’d lean their way to get the cover as well as the Broncos just can’t score. But the better play might be the under as the Broncos “D’ is legit. UNDER 44
Patriots at Cardinals – The Patriots are still alive for the playoffs. They are currently on the outside looking in but there’s still plenty of football left to be played. But like all teams in the hunt, there’s no room for error. Potential playoff like games against the Bengals and Dolphins loom on the horizon but for those to be meaningful they’ll have to win a couple of games against teams they should beat. Namely, the Cardinals and Raiders. Patriots -1.5