It’s a quick turnaround after beating Carolina last Sunday, but the Lions have won on Sunday and then on Thanksgiving Day in each of the past two seasons. This time, it’s the division leading Bears. Hmmm. Detroit beat the Vikings last year on Turkey Day. They can do it again… Detroit 23, Chicago 20.
It’s a Cowboys-Redskins Thanksgiving Day feast. The winner will take control of the NFC East. The Redskins lost QB Alex Smith for the season. The Cowboys have won two straight, but have lost three of their last four Thanksgiving Day games. Their last win on Turkey Day? In 2016…over the Redskins. The Cowboys will make it happen again… Dallas 22, Washington 18.
The Saints (9-1) are hot. The 4-6 Falcons, who have lost two straight, are not. New Orleans beat Atlanta earlier this season in overtime on the road. This time will be much easier. Plus, it’s at home. Drew Brees and the Saints offense averages 36.7 points per game and have scored at least 45 in their last three… New Orleans 38, Atlanta 31.
The Bills lost four in a row scoring a total of 33 points in the process then they put up 41 in a win over the Jets last week. The Jags have lost six in a row including last week’s 20-16 defeat to Pittsburgh in the final minute. The Bills will have the advantage of playing in cold weather… Buffalo 15, Jacksonville 14.
The Bengals have beaten their AFC North foe Browns seven straight times. The last time Cleveland beat the Bengals was in Cincinnati in November of 2014. Could it happen again? The Bengals have lost two straight and the Browns had an extra week off to prepare. Even at 5-5, Cincy still has a shot at a wild card. That’s enough for a home win… Cincinnati 28, Cleveland 20.
The Patriots and Jets play after both teams had a bye last week. New England lost miserably to the Titans before the bye while the Jets haven’t won since mid-October. This is the first of two meetings this season. The Patriots have won the last four straight and 12 of the last 14. Make it five in a row… New England 38, NY Jets 17.
The Eagles’ season is just about over. Last week’s embarrassing 48-7 loss to New Orleans proves just how far the Super Bowl champs have fallen. Still, a win over the 3-7 Giants keeps Philadelphia alive in the playoff race. The Eagles beat the Giants in the first meeting (34-13) this season and will do so again… Philadelphia 38, NY Giants 31.
Tampa Bay is 3-7 and has now lost four straight. They have the league’s worst defense, one that allows 32.3 points per game. They face a 49ers team that is just 2-8, but San Francisco does have one of the NFL’s better running games. It’s the perfect recipe for a Niners’ win… San Francisco 23, Tampa Bay 17.
Seattle kept its postseason hopes alive with a 27-24 win over Seattle last Thursday. Now, they face a Carolina team that has somehow lost two straight. The Panthers are one of the teams that could keep the Seahawks out of the playoffs. A win would do wonders. Too bad the game is in Charlotte… Carolina 19, Seattle 17.
Lamar Jackson totaled 267 yards in his first NFL start carrying the ball 27 times for 117 and throwing for 150 more. The Raiders are 26th in total defense and 30th in scoring defense (29.3 points per game). If Jackson starts again, Oakland will have a tough time stopping him. Well, the Raiders have a hard time stopping anyone… Baltimore 24, Oakland 17.
The Chargers committed 14 penalties and missed an extra point in last week’s upset loss to Denver. It was the Chargers’s first loss after six straight wins. The Cardinals have just two wins the entire season and both are against the 49ers (who are also 2-8). Arizona doesn’t do much on offense and the defense isn’t very good either. Chargers (7-3) get back on the winning track… LA Chargers 33, Arizona 14.
The Steelers, now 7-2-1, just keep grinding. QB Ben Roethlisberger found a way to beat Jacksonville last week on the road. The Broncos found a way to upset the Chargers last week. Don’t believe that they can pull that off two weeks in a row… Pittsburgh 32, Denver 22.
Don’t look now, but the Colts have won four straight. They held the Titans to 10 points last week in a 38-10 victory. The offense is averaging 36.5 points per game during the streak and now face a Dolphins team that has given up 34 per game in its five losses. Oh, and the Colts play at home where they have won three of their last four… Indianapolis 35, Miami 17.
Sunday night’s NFC North matchup in Minnesota is an almost must-win for both the Packers and Vikings. The loser faces the challenge of needing help to make the postseason. The winner will be right in the thick of the playoff race. The Vikings have lost two of their past three. Green Bay has yet to win a road game this season. Could the Vikings lost two division games in a row? Yes… Green Bay 28, Minnesota 27.
The Texans have won seven in a row. One of their losses this season was to Tennessee. QB Marcus Mariota might not play, but he didn’t play in the first game this season either. Houston is hot. J.J. Watt has 10 sacks and WR DeAndre Hopkins is having an All-Pro caliber season. At home, the Texans win No. 8 in a row… Houston 34, Tennessee 24.
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2018 NFL Football Season
Green Bay @ Detroit
The Lions are hot. Three wins in a row, including a Thanksgiving Day stomping of Philadelphia have Detroit talking about a possible playoff run. The remaining schedule features just one major hurdle – the Packers this Thursday night. Detroit beat Green Bay at Lambeau Field earlier in the season. Don’t believe that the Aaron Rodgers and the Packers will let that happen again… Green Bay 29, Detroit 23.
NY Jets @ NY Giants
The Giants will officially be the home team at MetLife Stadium, the home field for both the Giants and the Jets. Both teams are clinging to visions of the playoffs. The Giants (5-6) didn’t help themselves last week with a loss to Washington who is now in control of the NFC East. The Jets are 6-5 and in contention for a wild card berth. A win over the Giants would give them momentum heading into late season showdowns with AFC East foes New England and Buffalo. It’s a tossup… Giants 32, Jets 31.
Arizona @ St. Louis
The Rams are one of two teams to beat the Cardinals, but an ugly 31-7 loss to the Bengals last week has St. Louis reeling. Head coach Jeff Fisher’s team was 4-3 five weeks ago and has now lost four in a row. The offense hasn’t scored more than 13 points in its last three games. Don’t expect anything different… Arizona 33, St. Louis 13.
Atlanta @ Tampa Bay
A month ago, the Falcons appeared to a legitimate playoff contender. Four straight losses later and they look like what they are – a team struggling to find itself. Wide receiver Julio Jones was held to just 56 yards receiving last week by a very good Minnesota defense. Look for Jones and Atlanta to redeem itself for its earlier loss to the Bucs… Atlanta 24, Tampa Bay 17.
Seattle @ Minnesota
The Vikings are for real. At 8-3, they lead the AFC North. The offense has the league’s leading rusher, Adrian Peterson, and head coach Mike Zimmer’s defense ranks in the top ten in every major statistical category. The Seahawks got a big win over a pretty good Pittsburgh team last week and are making their playoff run. Can they win in Minnesota? Probably not… Minnesota 23, Seattle 17.
Carolina @ New Orleans
The league’s only remaining unbeaten team takes on division rival New Orleans, a team it beat 27-22 earlier in the season. The Saints have the league’s worst defense. They give up 31 points per game and seem to be getting worse every week. Cam Newton and the Panthers are not losing this week… Carolina 28, New Orleans 13.
Philadelphia @ New England
After losing three in a row, the Eagles are still alive in the very poor NFC East. The problem is they have to face the 10-1 Patriots coming off their first loss and do so in Foxborough. With TE Rob Gronkowski possibly out this week, the rest of the Patriots offense is going to have to step up. And they will. The Eagles drop their fourth in a row… New England 30, Philadelphia 24.
Indianapolis @ Pittsburgh
The Steelers let one get away last week in Seattle. QB Ben Rothliesberger reportedly had a concussion late in the game and threw a costly interception. If he plays against the Colts, expect the Pittsburgh offense to play well at home. The Colts have won three straight but are still suspect. Running back Frank Gore has yet to crack 100 yards in a game this season. Don’t expect that to happen against a stout Pittsburgh defense playing in front of its home crowd… Pittsburgh 34, Indianapolis 31.
Kansas City @ Oakland
The Chiefs have turned their season around with five straight wins. QB Alex Smith and WR Jeremy Maclin are playing well and the running game, featuring Charcandrick West, is somehow the sixth best in the NFL. West has stepped in for Jamaal Charles who is out for the season with a knee injury. The Raiders won last week after losing three straight. They are still very much alive for a wild card berth in the AFC. Can they win this rivalry game at home? Kansas City 27, Oakland 24.
Dallas @ Washington
It’s one of the NFL’s greatest rivalries. Now, the 5-6 Redskins, currently in first place in the NFC East, will take on the 3-8 Cowboys, who have not won a game that QB Tony Romo did not finish. Romo reinjured his broken collarbone last week in the Cowboys Thanksgiving Day loss to Carolina. He will miss the rest of the season. Washington somehow beat the Giants in the division that nobody seems to want to win. Without Romo, the Cowboys are just awful… Washington 23, Dallas 17.