Thursday, November 21, 2013
NFL Week 12 Picks: Arizona Cardinals To Continue Winning Ways Against Indianapolis Colts
New Orleans (8-2) at Atlanta (2-8)
With two wins this season and four consecutive losses by at least 13 points, there's no reason to continue picking the Falcons to win football games. Unless they play Jacksonville, which they don't.
New Orleans wins.
Tampa Bay (2-8) at Detroit (6-4)
The Bucs have won two in a row after losing their first eight games of the season. Those two wins were at home though, and now they'll have to go on the road to face a Lions team that is better than either Miami or Atlanta.
The Lions blew a late lead against the Steelers last week but they have yet to lost two games in a row this season and are 3-1 at home.
This could be a fun game to watch as both offenses should be able to pass the ball fairly well, but at home and with more weapons the Lions should take care of business.
Minnesota (2-8) at Green Bay (5-5)
The Packers have lost three straight and in two games in relief this year, quarterback Scott Tolzien has thrown five interceptions, compared to just one touchdown.
Tolzein's accurate though (when hitting his own receivers) , completing 65.8 percent of his passes. That would be good enough for sixth in the league.
The Vikings defense is 29th in the league in passing yards allowed per game. They are tied for 20th in the league in interceptions, tied for 24th in sacks, and have given up the most touchdown passes.
Expect a healthy dose of Eddie Lacey for the Packers, but Tolzein should also fare better against the Vikings.
Green Bay wins.
Jacksonville (1-9) at Houston (2-8)
The Texans haven't won since Week 2, but they continue to fight. In the last four games they have only lost by a single score and an average of 3.0 points per game.
The Jaguars went back to losing last week and should continue to do so on the road in Week 12.
San Diego (4-6) at Kansas City (9-1)
The Chiefs may have been knocked out of the unbeaten ranks, but this should be a good bounce back week for them.
At home, they are 5-0 this season. Against teams under .500, they are 7-0.
The Chargers are under .500 after losing to the struggling Dolphins last week. They are also 2-4 on the road.
Kansas City wins.
Carolina (7-3) at Miami (5-5)
Even though the Dolphins are 3-2 at home, the Panthers may be too much to handle.
Carolina has won six games in a row, three of which were on the road. Miami's play calling on offense has been rather conservative and the Panthers defense, which is fifth in passing yards allowed per game and third in rushing yards per game, should smother them.
Pittsburgh (4-6) at Cleveland (4-6)
The Steelers started off slow but are picking up steam as the season goes on. They have won two consecutive games and four out of their past six.
Meanwhile, the Browns have lost four out of their past five games.
Cleveland is 3-2 at home this season, but momentum seems to be in Pittsburgh's favor. The turnover battle should come into play in this game. Last week the Steelers caused three turnovers against the Lions, while Cleveland turned the ball over four times, including three interceptions.
Chicago (6-4) at St. Louis (4-6)
Josh McCown has fared well for the Bears this year. He's got 754 yards passing in four games, to go with five touchdowns and zero interceptions. The team is also 2-0 when he starts, and he'll be starting this weekend.
The Rams got a big win two weeks ago against the Colts and are coming off a bye week, but they are actually under .500 (2-3) at home.
New York Jets (5-5) at Baltimore (4-6)
The Jets have alternated wins and losses, but they have been dismal on the road this year (1-4).
The Jets are a game ahead of the Ravens in the standings, but Baltimore is 3-1 at home this year.
Geno Smith is second in the league in interceptions (16), while Joe Flacco is fifth (13). In away games, Smith has thrown 10 picks, while Flacco has only thrown two picks at home.
Tennessee (4-6) at Oakland (4-6)
The Titans are awfully weak at defending the run. They are 20th in the league in rushing yards allowed per game and are tied for allowing the most rushing touchdowns (15) in the league.
The Raiders are fourth in the league in rushing yards per game and last week Rashad Jennings had 150 yards rushing and a touchdown. He's rushed for at least 100 yards and a touchdown in two of his past three games.
Indianapolis (7-3) at Arizona (6-4)
Since beating Denver and coming out of the bye, the Colts have not looked very sharp. They are 2-1 since beating the Broncos, but they needed comebacks to beat Houston and Tennessee by three points each and were demoralized by the Rams at home.
The Cardinals have won three straight and are 4-1 at home. Carson Palmer threw for 419 yards and two touchdowns in last week's win and it was the first game this season he hasn't thrown a pick.
The Colts are 21st in total yards allowed, while the Cardinals are eighth.
Dallas (5-5) at New York Giants (4-6)
The Cowboys looked like the strongest team in the NFC East a few weeks ago, but they've lost two of their past three games. Both losses came on the road and they are 1-4 on the road this season.
The Giants are hot, winning four in a row, three of which were at home. The Giants will have their work cut out for them later in the season with three road games in their final five, but right now they have all the momentum and home field advantage.
New York Giants win.
Denver (9-1) at New England (7-3)
The Broncos just knocked off the only undefeated team remaining in the league. They're first in passing yards for and first in points per game. I can see wide receiver Wes Welker having a big game against his former team.
The Patriots are and have been banged up defensively. They are 20th in the league in yards allowed per game.
The Pats are undefeated at home, but do they have the horses to keep up with the Broncos?
San Francisco (6-4) at Washington (3-7)
For all the talk about the final (non)call in the New England-Carolina game last week, 49ers fans had plenty to gripe about as well with roughing the passer calls.
What's done is done, however, and the 49ers have now lost two consecutive games coming out of the bye week. Those were against teams with winning records. They won't have that same problem against the Redskins.
Washington has lost two in a row and there seems to be a slight rift in the team, mainly between quarterback RG3 and head coach Mike Shanahan.
The 49ers passing offense has struggled mightily this season, but facing the Redskins defense, ranked 26th in passing yards allowed per game, should help.
San Francisco wins.
Bye week: Buffalo, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Seattle
Last week: 11-4
Larry Fitzgerald and Carson Palmer: AP Photo/Matt York