I don’t want to be writing this guide for you this week. Michigan just lost to Ohio State and looked competitive enough to give me hope. However, I owe you, the reader, my weekly picks as I look to rebound off a 2-5-1 week. That’s unacceptable and you deserve better. This week I’m only giving you locks and not messing around with unders or basic research. This is a gut week and week 12 is gut-check time.
Just the picks: Falcons -9 1/2, Browns +8 1/2, Titans -3 1/2, Saints +2 1/2, Seahawks -6 1/2, Jaguars -4 1/2, Steelers (-14)
Tampa Bay at Atlanta (-9 1/2) – 1 PM
Tampa Bay is garbage and the Falcons seem to be turning their season around after a slow start.
Cleveland (+8 1/2) at Cincinnati – 1 PM
I don’t buy the Cincinnati resurgence, plus the Browns have kept most of their losses close.
Tennessee (-3 1/2) at Indianapolis – 1 PM
It’s been a bad year for both of these teams, but each team has had double-digit days to prepare so I’ll take the team with more talent on paper.
New Orleans (+2 1/2) at Los Angeles Rams – 4:05 PM
The Saints and Rams are both much improved from last season, but I won’t bet against Drew Brees and still can’t convince myself Jared Goff is good.
Seattle (-6 1/2) at San Francisco – 4:05 PM
I know Seattle is banged up, but the NFC is bad enough that the Seahawks should still cruise to a wildcard berth. The 49ers meanwhile have already exceeded expectations by winning a game this season.
LOCK: Jacksonville (-4 1/2) @ Arizona – 4:25 PM
Jacksonville is good and unless Arizona’s secondary can take back two Blake Bortles interceptions for touchdowns, I can’t see Blaine Gabert keeping it close in an all-time sad revenge game storyline. People forget that Gabbert left a year early from Mizzou and the Jags drafted him in the first round.
DOUBLE LOCK: Green Bay @ Pittsburgh (-14) – 8:30 PM
Green Bay is so bad. They can’t score at all and Pittsburgh’s defense is back. This should get ugly in prime time.