It was an embarrassing Sunday last week as far as picks go. Unfortunately one of the only games I got correct was the Vikings. Ugh.
But thanks to a marvelous Thanksgiving slate of games (5-1) I’m barely back over .500 for the season and ready to throw out some more winners this Sunday.
Let’s start with everyone’s favorite game of the week: The Giants at the Bengals. Big, Big game for both sides, with huge playoff implications for the Giants. Cincinnati lost Joe Burrow last week for the rest of the season. The back-up Ryan Finley was so bad in relief that the Bengals announced they’re starting Brandon Allen, fresh off the practice squad.
He has one career start. And his teammates are the Bengals. That’s good enough for me. I’ll take the Giants (-6) over the Bengals.
I said earlier, in my long drawn out hypothetical plan of the Bucs playing the Vikings in Week 14 with a playoff spot on the line, that Kansas City wouldn’t have a problem with the Tampa Bay. I’m still right there in my head. Give me the Chiefs (-3.5) over the Bucs.
How about the Bears this week? Am I crazy? Maybe…but Trubisky is starting. The Bears are coming off a bye. Green Bay hasn’t been playing great, going 2-2 the last four weeks while playing poorly in three of those games. And the Bears still have that defense, more than capable of putting Rodgers on his back and forcing turnovers. Not to mention the Bears have had to sit back and listen to the Chicago media tell them how bad they are for the past month. Maybe they’re getting tired of it…Enough to where they’ll only lose by ten points or less?…Maybe. Let’s take a chance on the Bears (+10) over Green Bay.
I love this Chargers team. They score a lot of points and don’t play much defense. The Bills have a high scoring offense. Weather is not gonna be a factor, it’ll be sunny and 50 degrees in Buffalo, New York tomorrow. I’ll take the Bills to win and cover 4.5, and the over of 53 points in the game. Thanks Chargers.
Raiders at Falcons. Over anyone??? Every game the Raiders have played this year has gone over, minus their game against the Browns they played in 55 mph winds. No change anticipated this week in Atlanta. Give me the Falcons-Raiders game to go over 53.5 points.
I think Cleveland can take care of Jacksonville in style tomorrow. It seems like Baker Mayfield will look at this matchup and salivate at the potential he has to build up his stats during this game. Meanwhile Kevin Stefanski will just keep running the ball down Jacksonville’s throat with the best 1-2 running back combination the league has to offer in Chubb and Hunt. Give me Cleveland -7.
And now to my bread and butter pick…The Minnesota Vikings. It came through last week, although I wish it hadn’t.
The Panthers have a solid team. I’m torn on deciding between Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer’s experience with coaching Teddy Bridgewater being a good thing or a bad thing. It wasn’t a factor last week when his old QB in Cincinnati, Andy Dalton, had no problem scoring points on that Vikings defense.
I’ve been riding this hypothetical Vikings post-season wave for 3 or 4 weeks now, but this might be where it all comes to an end…against Carolina. Sadly my Vikings preseason prediction might be a lot more accurate than my recent ‘Minnesota to the playoffs’ pipe dream when all is said and done.
The storyline for Teddy coming all the way back and beating his former team just seems too perfect to not happen this week. (I’d prefer reading the story ‘Harrison Smith picks off his former teammate 3 times in Vikings victory’ more myself.) And even though the Vikings offense has been great for about a month now, if the game gets close Kirk Cousins has shown zero ability to put together a last minute drive to win or force overtime. Having no Adam Thielen on the field could be an issue for Minnesota as well. Unfortunately for the Vikings, I anticipate this game being close. If I believe that I have to go with Carolina (+3).
Bonus Picks: Arizona (-2) over New England, Titans (+3) over Colts,
***SEASON RECORD***: 40-39-1 (4-7 last week) (5-1 this week on Thanksgiving) (4-7 on Vikings picks this season.)