Howdy, folks. Hope you’re all enjoying the frigid weather before you scramble back to your (hopefully) much warmer homes for Thanksgiving. A great many of this week’s games appear one-sided upon first examination, but as we learned with the Rams and Broncos last week, every game is a trap game.
Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders:
First up, we’ve got a prime time divisional matchup which sounds excellent on paper, but involves the Raiders, who have yet to find a win, and the Chiefs, who dominated the Super Bowl champion Seahawks last week in a brutal battle of the trenches. As much as I love picking the underdog, Oakland’s defense is porous, Jamaal Charles is unstoppable, the Chiefs’ defense is solid, and Derek Carr throws interceptions. I really hope I’m wrong about this one, but 21-6 Chiefs.
New Jersey Jets at Buffalo Bills:
Why oh why do we Bills fans keep returning every year to this nonsense? Their hope for the wild card was dashed on the rocks by losses in must-win games against Kansas City and Miami, making it more likely the Bills will play the Patriots for the division in week 17 (as if). Ugh. Buffalo’s offense was wretched last week. The Jets are coming off a bye after barely beating the Steelers. UGH. If the Bills lose this one, the season is done, and man it feels like they will. Logically, though, I think the Bills are the better team, plus, they’re at home, and it just snowed. Perhaps this is a hopeful pick, but 20-14 Bills
Detroit Lions at New England Patriots:
This should be an exciting game between two competitive teams. However, the Patriots have looked unstoppable, having won six straight games, invincible at home. I like the Lions, and I really want them to win this, but their offense is nearly 26th in points scored this year, partially due to Lombardi not letting Stafford bomb it down the field. Maybe that will change with Calvin Johnson back in. Regardless, this is going to be a shootout, and I think the Gronk-Brady connection is currently a bit stronger than the Megatron-Stafford. 28-17 New England
Miami Dolphins at Denver Broncos:
The Dolphins are coming off a solid enough performance against the Bills, albeit one assisted by the referees (you all know that that wasn’t pass interference). The Broncos have looked mortal lately, especially with the litany of injuries to their offense. Indeed, if Julius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders don’t play, this will be a tough game for the Broncos’ otherwise invincible offense, as Demaryius Thomas will be shadowed by that devil Brent Grimes and CJ Anderson will be starting at runningback. Tannehill has had more time to work out his ankle and shoulder issues and, besides a fumble, looked fantastic against the Bills. Still, this is in Denver and the Bronco defense remains as scary as ever. Expect a close game, but I’m going to throw caution to the wind and go with the underdog. 27-24 Miami
Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants:
The ‘Boys are back after dismantling the Jaguars in London, and a much needed bye week to rest quarterback, Tony Romo. Meanwhile, the Giants just finished losing in pitiful fashion to the 49ers, with Eli Manning throwing five interceptions. Coming off from a week of rest, Dallas should look to roll into Metlife and trounce the struggling Giants, while Eli will try his best not to throw more than one redzone pick. 31-7 Cowboys
Baltimore Ravens at New Orleans Saints:
This should actually be a decent game – these teams are evenly matched despite what their records might tell you, although the Saints are coming off a two-game losing streak at home and the Ravens are coming off a comfortable bye week. The Superdome hasn’t made the Saints as invincible as it has been in the past and their team has been subpar all season, whereas the Ravens have been above expectations, though not to an absurd level. I’m thinking that Baltimore will take this one, although it feels like it’ll be close. 20-10 Baltimore
Callis is a member of the class of 2017.