NFL Picks - Week 17

As the season winds to a close I thought it might be fun and humiliating to look back at the record I predicted for each team at the start of the year. And if you don't think it's going to be fun then you're definitely much cooler than I am, meaning you should be out skateboarding or high fiving, not reading this. So now who's lame? I feel like we got sidetracked, let's get started.

Sunday Morning

Carolina @ Atlanta

Carolina: 7-9
Looks like I underestimated the Panthers. I don't blame myself (a phrase I'll only use once), it was hard to imagine Ron Rivera leading a team to a division championship and a first round bye. Yet here we are in a world where that is a possibility, and it scares the hell out of me.

Atlanta: 11-5
I was way off on this one too. I don't blame myself.

Panthers 24-16

Baltimore @ Cincinnati

Baltimore: 8-8
With a Ravens loss I'll be right on the nose. If it happens I'll certainly be putting it on my resume. I'm not being facetious, "Correctly predicted the Baltimore Ravens 2013 record" will go right below my three Summers at Staples.

Cincinnati: 11-5
Looks like a Bengals win makes me two for two here. You probably think that means that I'll pick Cincy, don't you? Well you're pretty smart (and attractive).

Bengals 27-17

Houston @ Tennessee

Houston: 10-6
How was I supposed to know that Matt Schaub would decline so sharply? What do I look like, a guy who watches a bunch of football and should see these things coming?

Tennessee: 6-10
Pretty close. I can spot lousiness like nobody's biz!

Titans 22-19

Jacksonville @ Indianapolis

Jacksonville: 3-13
They've already reached 4 wins, making their season a success. Expectations will be higher next season for Gus Bradley & co. Better put up at least 6 wins or the Jaguars fan(s) will start to grumble.

Indianapolis: 8-8
I can't blame myself here. Their erratic play from last season has only continued in 2013, but somehow they find ways to win more often than not. Usually it involves outscoring the opponent in the time allotted for a regulation football game.

Colts 31-17

New York Jets @ Miami

New York: 3-13
Boy I really thought these guys would stink, and I'm not so sure they don't. I know they say they're 7-8 right now, but has anybody delved a little deeper to see if it's true? I certainly can't remember watching them win seven games. I'm going to pull the loose thread on this one and see how far it unravels. Stay tuned gang.

Miami: 8-8
Close, but I think the Dolphins will get the win this Sunday to go 9-7 and grab the #6 seed in the AFC. Which is impressive, because you wouldn't think that Dolphins would be able to grab anything.

Dolphins 19-13

Detroit @ Minnesota

Detroit: 7-9
Bingo! The late season collapse of the Lions has me within striking distance. I have only Turbo Redface (Jim Schwartz) to thank. You're the real hero.

Minnesota: 5-11
Regardless of whether or not the Vikings win this Sunday I'll miss by a half game. If that isn't the best argument for abolishing ties in the NFL than I don't know what is.

Vikings 30-27

Washington @ New York Giants

Washington: 8-8
Not gonna blame myself on this one. While I did think that RG3 would struggle to stay healthy I had no idea that he would miss the final three games of the season due to ... well, I'm still not sure. Maybe because he's a Republican.

New York: 10-6
I had the Giants winning the division, and knowing this group, I wouldn't count them out just yet. Take your "mathematics" and shove it. These guys never say die!

Giants 38-31

Cleveland @ Pittsburgh

Cleveland: 9-7
Can't blame myself. Who in their right mind would have predicted that the Browns, the Cleveland Browns, with Brandon Weeden at quarterback, would have a losing record? Boggles the mind.

Pittsburgh: 10-6
They still have an outside chance of making my playoffs prediction correct, but they'll need a lot of help. That's so typical of our society today, everybody's looking for handouts. Show me a team that pulls itself up by its bootstraps and I'll show you a winner.

Steelers 23-13

Sunday Afternoon

St. Louis @ Seattle

St. Louis: 8-8
Well they're 7-8 right now. I've never wanted to be wrong about anything more in my life. Ok, maybe that time I thought I had the plague. But even with that it's a toss-up.

Seattle: 16-0
Still not sure how I didn't nail this one.

Seahawks 21-7

Green Bay @ Chicago

Green Bay: 11-5
I blame the discrepancy here on Aaron Rodgers' left cllllavicle. If he hadn't suffered that injury I would have been exactly right. Let's just take that comment at face value and not examine that any further.

Chicago: 8-8
A loss on Sunday and that will be their record. Unfortunately for the Bears, and really the rest of the NFC, I think that's exactly what will happen. Time to hibernate gents, sleep well.

Packers 31-24

Denver @ Oakland

Denver: 12-4
Close, but no cigar. Well guess what hot shots, I don't smoke cigars. So now who's laughing? Hmm, actually it doesn't seem like anybody is. I mean, I know I'm not, and I doubt you are. Hey, how about this. There, now we're all laughing.

Oakland: 2-14
I went too low on this squad, and I apologize. Congrats Raiders, you got 4 wins and you proved me wrong. Mission accomplished!

Broncos 38-20

Buffalo @ New England

Buffalo: 5-11
The Bills got their sixth win last week, so it looks like I'll be one shy. SHIT!

New England: 11-5
They'll likely win this week and get to 12-4, which should really just be my default prediction for them as long as Bill Belichick is alive. No, not as long as he's coach, as long as he's alive.

Patriots 35-17

Tampa Bay @ New Orleans

Tampa Bay: 7-9
I think you and I both know that if they had started this sicko in Week 1 they'd have at least 7 wins.

New Orleans: 10-6
They'd have to lose to Tampa to make this record a reality. At home, with a playoff spot on the line, I just don't see it happening. And if it starts to happen I'll close my eyes so that I don't have to see it happening.

Saints 27-14

San Francisco @ Arizona

San Francisco: 10-6
I stand by this prediction. I think they lose this week and the NFL eventually strips them of a previous victory. It could be years down the road, so my accuracy on this one may be TBD for quite some time.

Arizona: 6-10
I've made a terrible mistake.

Cardinals 20-17

Kansas City @ San Diego

Kansas City: 7-9
I thought they'd improve, but I didn't see this coming. But if somebody had predicted 11 or 12 wins for the Chiefs prior to the season we would have called them an asshole. Or at least I would have, you probably would have wimped out and been like, "Yeah I could see that."

San Diego: 6-10
Lesson learned: underestimate Philip Rivers and live to regret it. How has it taken me this long to realize that?

Chargers 34-24

Sunday Night

Philadelphia @ Dallas

Philadelphia: 6-10
Can you blame me? I know I can't.

Dallas: 7-9
Missed it by that much. I knew the Cowboys would be pretty mediocre, for some reason I didn't predict them to be exactly mediocre.

Eagles 29-21


NFL Picks - Week 16

Sunday Morning

Miami @ Buffalo

You have to admire that the Dolphins haven't allowed their season to be derailed by a big, fat scumbag. Of course I'm referring to Santa, who publicly announced that he would not be visiting Miami this year. As of right now they're still on the outside of the AFC playoffs due to being on the wrong end of a tie-breaker, but if they win their final two they have a good shot at making it over the Ravens who have a tougher schedule. But traveling to Buffalo to play a football game is never easy. In fact, this time of year traveling anywhere to do anything isn't easy. It's like are you kidding me with these delays? And I don't care what TSA recommends, I ain't showing up three hours before my flight.

Bills 24-21

Minnesota @ Cincinnati

It's MIN vs. CIN and I'm not mincin' words when I proclaim that this will not be the game of the day. Is that statement controversial? Maybe. But guess what, I'm bold as I wanna be; deal with it. The Bengals could actually miss the playoffs if they stumble in their final two games, but with both of them being at home they should be safe. As safe as anyone can be in this barbaric bloodsport.

Bengals 30-22

Indianapolis @ Kansas City

It's a triple P y'all: Possible Playoff Preview. And you know that nothing gets me more jazzed. The Chiefs have exploded offensively over the past four weeks to the tune of 40.5 points per game. What does that tune sound like? Probably similar to this. The Colts have proven more than capable of giving up large amounts of points and I expect nothing less here.

Chiefs 35-27

Tampa Bay @ St. Louis

With their win over the Saints last week the Rams proved that there's still fight in them. Of course, that doesn't do them much good now that they're 6-8, but at least they can hold their head high. Granted, not as high as many of the other teams in the NFL, but they haven't given up. True, it would actually help their draft position if they did give up, but that just isn't the Jeff Fisher way. The Jeff Fisher way seems to be all about getting as close to .500 as possible. Here's one more step in the right direction.

Rams 23-16

Cleveland @ New York Jets

A lot of folks would tell you that this game means nothing.

Jets 20-17

Dallas @ Washington

With the chill of another December comes the inevitable weekly collapse of Tony Romo. Honestly though, isn't it time that we all stop blaming him for these game ruining interceptions? If it weren't for the defense allowing the other team back into the game Romo wouldn't even have to blow it at the end. A lost at Washington could doom Dallas's season and cause many a TV analyst's head to cave in. Fortunately for their brains, I think the Cowboys will manage to get a win.

Cowboys 31-26

New Orleans @ Carolina

Do you like playoff implications? If you don't then why don't you just get the hell out of here right now. I don't have room for lame-o's. If New Orleans wins they will clinch the NFC South title and a first round bye. If the Panthers beat the Saints they only need to win in Atlanta in Week 17 to clinch those aforementioned accolades. The loser of this game will most likely start the playoffs on the road as a wild card. So we're dealing with a lot of shit. We all know that the Saints struggle on the road, and this game happens to be scheduled to be played in Carolina (Charlotte, North Carolina specifically).

Panthers 23-20

Tennessee @ Jacksonville

Ohhhhhh baby. Hold onto your butts! Pump up the volume and raise da roof! This is gonna be a wild ride! Everybody dance now! It's getting hot in here! Footballllll!

Jaguars 27-23

Denver @ Houston

Whatever happened to the Broncos offense last week? Not to mention the milkman, the paper boy, or evening TV. They had to scratch and claw just to get to 20 points and on their final drive Peyton Manning was checking down at a Jason Campbellian pace. Now they have to visit Houston who somehow boasts the second best passing defense in the league. Of course, they also boast a 12 game losing streak. Though, I'm not sure that a 12 game losing streak is something that can be boasted. The Texans won't have to worry about that for long though, because after Sunday it will be 13.

Broncos 35-17

Sunday Afternoon

Arizona @ Seattle

One more win and the Hawks will clinch home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs. I'm not sure about the team, but I don't see any reason to wait until next week to get that win. And just to prove I mean business I've decided to board a plane and personally stand in the Hawks' Nest to make sure the job gets done.

Seahawks 27-10

New York Giants @ Detroit

The Lions lost control of their destiny last week with a home loss to the Ravens. Now they are subject to the same chaotic happenstance as the rest of us. Their fate is at the mercy of the random machinations of the universe. Good luck guys, if there even is such a thing.

Lions 34-20

Pittsburgh @ Green Bay

Don't look now ... Don't look ... Don't look ... Ok, look look look! The Packers have a winning record again and they only need to win their final two games to become NFC North champs. There's also a chance that Aaron Rodgers will return from his broken clllllavicle injury for one or both of those games. Either way I think Green Bay gets the win this week.

Packers 24-20

Oakland @ San Diego

Even though the Chargers got a big win last Thursday over the Broncos they'll still need a lot of help to make the playoffs. But nobody's going to help you unless you help yourself, and once you do that, you've truly won. That being said, it would really help if the Ravens and Dolphins both lost their last two games.

Chargers 38-24

New England @ Baltimore

The end of the Ravens' 2013 regular season is following the exact opposite trajectory of their 2012 regular season. After starting 9-2 in '12 they stumbled to a 10-6 finish. This season they started 4-6 and have now won four in a row to sit at 8-6 with a legitimate shot at returning to the playoffs to defend their title. They'll most likely get the win this week over a Patriots team that is 3-4 on the road this season.

Ravens 26-23

Sunday Night

Chicago @ Philadelphia

CHI vs. PHI? It's all Greek to me. Thank you everybody, goodnight!

Eagles 30-27

Monday Night

Atlanta @ San Francisco

Whoops, forgot there was one more game. Can ya blame me? I hope this game moves swiftly, I hope it goes quick so we can finally say goodbye to that dump called Candlestick.

49ers 35-10


NFL Picks - Week 15

Sunday Morning

Seattle @ New York Giants

Seahawks 31-14

Washington @ Atlanta

This battle of NFC foes is going to come down to who wants it more. And by it, I mean the #1 pick in the draft. The winner of this game will take themselves out of the running. Oh wait, that's right, the Redskins have already taken themselves out of the running by trading away their 2014 1st round pick to the Rams. That gives Washington no incentive to lose, yet to their credit they just keep on doing it, and in more embarrassing fashion each week. Last week I picked the Falcons and predicted that I'd live to regret it; this proved to be prophetic as they lost late to the Packers. Fool me once, shame on me. I hate being shamed, so I'll stubbornly stick with Atlanta this week.

Falcons 27-20

Chicago @ Cleveland

It looks like Jay Cutler will be healthy enough to start Sunday, but at this point Josh McCown might give Chicago the best chance to win. Aaaaand, there it is, the statement that was foretold eons ago to cause the ground to open and the Earth to be swallowed whole. We had a good run folks, but now we're all screwed thanks to Josh McCown and his relative success. The Browns will most likely be demoralized after blowing their game against New England last week, I expect a flat effort.

Bears 24-19

Houston @ Indianapolis

It's impressive that the Texans have managed to lose so many in a row without getting blown out. They've dropped their last seven by seven points or less. Meanwhile, the Colts have somehow becomes the first team in the league to clinch their division despite an 8-5 record. I really hope that they were presented with AFC South Champions hats and shirts in the locker room after their loss in Cincinnati last week; furthermore, it would be even better if they really embraced it and started celebrating with champagne. Luck's probably a teetotaler though, so that most likely didn't happen. Indy should get back on track (at least temporarily) against this Houston team already looking towards next season. In other words, look for Luck to lick the lacking Texans looking to lock down the #1 pick.

Colts 26-20

New England @ Miami

The Dolphins avoided a near catastrophe last week in Pittsburgh when Antonio Brown barely stepped out of bounds on the last play of the game after a series of "laterals." The play was kind of a metaphor for their season in that halfway through Richie Incognito showed up and called someone the N word. The Patriots' chances for the remainder of the season took a big hit when Rob Gronkowski's knee blew up last Sunday. Without him, New England is considerably weaker, however, their average IQ is considerably higher.

Dolphins 24-21

Philadelphia @ Minnesota

Adrian Peterson almost broke his ankle last week, which means he probably would have been ready to play a Thursday game. However, with his team out of the playoff race and his future to worry about, er some bull shit, it might be wise to shut him down. Then again, "wise" isn't in the Vikings vocabulary. That's because they speak Scandinavian languages, so really no English is in their vocabulary.

Eagles 28-17

San Francisco @ Tampa Bay

Can Mike Glennon do this? I've learned to stop saying "no" in response to that question. Of course, if the this in question were a back flip I'd probably say no. I mean, c'mon, there's no way this guy's doing a back flip. Can he beat the Niners though? Why the hell not? Don't answer that.

Buccaneers 21-20

Buffalo @ Jacksonville

You're going to call me crazy, which is pretty insensitive considering my history of mental illness, but the Jags could win out and finish 7-9. After this they have a home game against Tennessee, then a Week 17 trip to Indianapolis, who could have nothing to play for at that point. It would be a stunning turn around for a team that looked to be historically bad earlier in the season. So kudos to you Jacksonville, you're now merely mediocre. And that is a testament to what determination and heart can accomplish in today's National Football League.

Jaguars 22-17

Sunday Afternoon

Kansas City @ Oakland

The Chiefs got back on the right track last week with a throttling of the Redskins that sounds more like a hate crime than I'd realized. Meanwhile, Matt McGloin couldn't quite get the job done for the Raiders. Of course, no one has quite got the job done for the Raiders for over 10 years now, so we should probably cut him some slack. And if you're not into cutting slacks then why'd you become a tailor? (Note: the last sentence only applies to those readers who are tailors, or Taylors if you're hearing this being read aloud I suppose, though it wouldn't be nearly as funny)

Chiefs 33-21

New York Jets @ Carolina

Last week I declared that I wouldn't pick the Jets as long as Geno Smith was their starting QB. They proceeded to put up 37 points in a win over Oakland and Geno played pretty well. Of course, that was a much easier match-up than he'll have this week when they travel to Carolina. Specifically North Carolina. If they just get in the plane and say, "Carolina please!" the pilot will probably be more than a little confused and they risk being late to the game. I don't give New York much of a chance even if they do arrive on time.

Panthers 23-9

Green Bay @ Dallas

It looks like Aaron Rodgers will miss yet another game with his broken clllllavicle. That's the bad news for the Packers; the good news is that they're going against a Cowboys' defense that was just embarrassed by Josh McCown (Flames bursting forth from beneath the ground! Run!). Despite that, Jerry Jones stood by his D coordinator Monte Kiffin saying that he is "the right man for the job." Though I suppose he could have been talking about an entirely different job, like creamed corn eater or scariest grandpa. All things considered though, I just don't think Matt Flynn has it in him to get this win on the road against a quality? team.

Cowboys 31-24 

Arizona @ Tennessee

The Cardinals are only 2-4 on the road this season, but the Titans are only 2-4 at home. So in this situation it would make sense to just take the better team. But when have you known me to make sense? The answer is always, I am nothing if not logical. Anyway, I predict that on a pivotal play Ryan Fitzpatrick will slip on a banana peel and fall (kerplunk!) into a puddle making him all wet and ruining his new pants.

Cardinals 27-17

New Orleans @ St. Louis

As if trying to exemplify that they're much better at home, the Saints dominated the Panthers in the Superdome six days after being throttled in Seattle. This game is being played outside of New Orleans, so it figures to at least be competitive. And if there's one team that you can count on to at least be competitive (and nothing more) then it's the Rams (as long as you ignore their recent double digit losses ... damn it Rams).

Saints 24-17

Sunday Night

Cincinnati @ Pittsburgh

The Steelers haven't officially been eliminated from the playoffs, but I think we can all agree that they should just go away now. Go on! No one wants you here! Can't you see that!? Of course, they'll probably ruin their poetic exit and win this game, just to be dicks.

Steelers 20-17

Monday Night

Baltimore @ Detroit

What a storied rivalry. I can remember my great grandpeppy settin' me down on his knee and telling me about the first ever match-up between these two squads way back in '98. Just to be clear, that was 1998, and one of only three times they've played each other. Not sure why great grandpeppy enjoyed those games so much, or if he could even see the screen clearly, but I'll be damned if I won't think of him when I'm watching this game. Probably because I'll once again be viewing it from atop his knee. We have an uncomfortably odd relationship. Did I mention we're not actually related?

Lions 30-23


NFL Picks - Week 15 Thursday

San Diego @ Denver

The Broncos' passing game cannot be stopped, and I think that's due in large part to Peyton Manning, though I'm not going to rule out the possibility that things would be going just as well with Brock Osweiler behind center. I learned long ago to never doubt the Bross-man. Expect to see yards a plenty through the air, or don't and see if I care. Spoiler alert: I do; why are being this way?

Broncos 41-28


NFL Picks - Week 14

Sunday Morning

Indianapolis @ Cincinnati

Both teams come into this game at 8-4 and the winner will have the inside track for the coveted #3 seed in the AFC. Coveted only due to the fact that they get to play whichever team wafts to the top of the stinky heap that is the battlefield upon which the AFC's second wild card battle is presently being fought. The Colts have been stumbling as of late but have managed to keep moving somewhat forward, like a drunk man headed to the bathroom. Meanwhile, the Bengals seem to have overcome their struggles on the road, like a drunk man driving home. Cincinnati should win what promises to be a sobering contest.

Bengals 24-21 

Atlanta @ Green Bay

This is a tough one to pick, mainly because neither option is very appealing. It's like choosing between a two and a half men marathon, or watching multiple episodes of the show with the same name. The Falcons have yet to win a true road game, with their lone win coming in Toronto against the Bills. The Packers haven't won a game since Aaron Rodgers got injured, going 0-4-1 and hitting their nadir last week in a blowout loss to Detroit. Both defenses have been awful, but without their QB1 Green Bay's offense has been poor as well. I'm ever so reluctantly taking Atlanta. I'll live to regret this.

Falcons 30-27

Cleveland @ New England

This week the Browns signed Caleb Hanie. On purpose. That should tell you all you need to know about how the 2013 season is going for Cleveland. The Patriots nearly faltered at Houston but they escaped with a win and Tom Brady got two security guards fired in the process, so all's well that ends well.

Patriots 31-10

Oakland @ New York Jets

I've really enjoyed watching Matt McGloin play for the Raiders, if only for the opportunity to tag all of his negative plays by grunt shouting "McGloin!" a la George C. Scott when he got hit in the groin by that football. I've also enjoyed Geno Smith's recent performance because it's a reminder that not all rookie quarterbacks can come into the league and dominate. His QB ratings over the last three weeks (all losses) have been 10.1, 22.3, and 8.3, respectively. If he remains the Jets starter I have no choice but to pick against him.

Raiders 16-14

Detroit @ Philadelphia

This one could be a barn burner, and Pennsylvania's Amish country has plenty of barns. It would be lame and disrespectful of these teams to go burn down Amish folks' barns though, so hopefully they stick to the football field in this one. Obviously Nick Foles has been exceptional as of late, but the Eagles' defense is what has really been carrying them. Philly hasn't given up more than 21 points in their last eight games, going 6-2 in the process. The Lions' offense is certainly capable of topping that mark, but I think they will be contained just enough.

Eagles 27-24

Miami @ Pittsburgh

The Steelers lost on Thanksgiving despite Mike Tomlin's best efforts. You have to admire a coach that's willing to do anything to win. Whether that be countless hours in the film room devising the perfect scheme or standing on the field as an opposing player is streaking for a touchdown. It's about dedication, and this guy's got it. Kudos to you coach Tomlin; hopefully you continue to not allow common sense, integrity, or the rules hold you back in the future.

Steelers 23-16

Buffalo @ Tampa Bay

I've got bad news for ya Bills, you don't just walk into Raymond James Stadium and beat Mike Glennon. He's 2-3 at home, that's almost .500, so good luck. Tampa took a step back last week in a blowout loss, but for every step backward that Mike Glennon takes, he takes two giant, gangly strides forward. 

Buccaneers 28-21

Kansas City @ Washington

After they've dropped three straight, I have serious reservations about picking the Chiefs over the Redskins. Then again, Washington has lost four in a row and have perhaps the most toxic locker room in the league. Not literally, of course, entering Tampa's requires a haz-mat suit. Kansas City's once vaunted defense has given up 103 points over the last three weeks after only surrendering 109 in the first nine. I think they'll be strong enough to get the win here though. Also, shame on anybody who buys entry into this game from someone who's re-selling tickets at a marked-up price. Really insensitive.

Chiefs 26-20

Minnesota @ Baltimore

These Vikings just love playing football. Over the past two weeks they've been on the field for an extra 28 minutes of game time, managing a win and a tie in those prolonged tilts. It's not going to get them to the playoffs, and it isn't helping their draft position, but don't tell this team that they should just roll over and die. Seriously, don't say that to them, you'd probably face legal action if you called up the Vikings' headquarters and told them to "roll over and die." Unfortunately for Minnesota, this game is being played on the road, a scenario in which they haven't won this season. So they'll lose, and they probably won't be too happy about it happening in regulation.

Ravens 27-13

Sunday Afternoon

Tennessee @ Denver

If you can only watch one game this Sunday, don't make this one it. This mediocre mismatch is definitely one to be missed. However, if you are forced to watch just this one game I would recommend asking your captor why he (or she) is inflicting such an odd form of punishment upon you. It's just flat out weird. They kidnap you and this is what they choose to do? And it's like, really, they have Sunday Ticket too? Who is this person? Anyway, the Broncos will struggle to put up their normal gaudy point total due to the weather, but it would take a cold day in Hell, not Denver to get the Titans the win.

Broncos 27-17

St. Louis @ Arizona

The Cardinals fell just short last week at Philadelphia but now return home where they have played very well, going 5-1 overall so far, including 3-1 against likely playoff teams. The Rams are not a likely playoff team, in fact, this will be the ninth straight time they've failed to reach the postseason and the tenth consecutive season that they haven't topped .500 (most likely). I bring this up because it means that Arizona is going to win, and it's fun to laugh at the Rams.

Cardinals 26-18

New York Giants @ San Diego

Eli Manning says he "can't remember" why he refused to play for the Chargers prior to the '04 draft. Really? That's all you've got? You can't remember? I mean at the time it sort of seemed like the move was meticulously calculated by him, his father, and a number of other people in his camp. But hey, the guy just can't recall what the real reasoning was behind the most pivotal decision of his life. We should cut him some slack. Or he's just full of shit. That's more likely, and for that you lose.

Chargers 28-24

Seattle @ San Francisco

The Seahawks have dominated the 49ers in their last two meetings, but it can't be said that they're dominating the rivalry until they go into San Francisco and beat them in their building. On Sunday at Candlestick: commence dominance.

Seahawks 24-6

Sunday Night

Carolina @ New Orleans

These are two of the best teams in the NFC when they're allowed to score more than 7 points; or so I hear. The Panthers have a dominant D that will most likely have some success against the Saints dynamic (home) offense. On the flip side, I would expect New Orleans' supposedly improved defense to perform better than last week, because it'd be hard not to. Carolina's eight game win streak has been very impressive, and handing New Orleans their first home loss of the year would qualify as the biggest feather in their cap to date. However, I think they'll fall just short against what should be a Saints team looking to regain some dignity.

Saints 23-21 

Monday Night

Dallas @ Chicago

It's a risky proposition to pick the Cowboys to win on the road since they only have two wins away from home this year. If you'd like some added perspective to that number, consider that that's less than the Jags (they have three). But with McCown still under center for the Bears, and the team looking downright crummy lately I may not have a choice. One thing working in Chicago's favor is a kickoff temperature that is expected to be in the single digits. Romo may find it hard to get the passing game going in those conditions, but with the Bears' rushing D as porous as it's been, moving the ball probably won't be too much of an issue.

Cowboys 24-20 


NFL Picks - Week 14 Thursday

Houston @ Jacksonville

Do I have to? That was my response when tasked with picking this game, and also the response of every Texans player when they found out they had to play it. I'm quite certain that if presented with the offer to take losses in the four remaining games without having to play them right now and just call it a season Houston would jump at the opportunity. But the league hasn't allowed that since '76 when the expansion Bucs decided that they weren't quite ready for football yet and opted for 0-14. So all indications are that this game will be played. Look for the Jags to get their fourth win in five games because they seem to care more.

Jaguars 20-16