Your weekly NFL picks brought to you by our staff retired gambler, LaCharles himself
Chiefsfocus @Chiefsfocus Charles Robinson @CRob5769
If you’re like me, the holidays are the best time of the year. Not only do you get to spend an inordinate amount of time with family, feeling the pressure of either hosting, or showing enough gratitude to those who are hosting and not feeling like a total leech if you eat one too many hors devours. Watching children shred gift wrap into oblivion and getting gifts that you’ve intentionally put off buying yourself for the last two months because it’s Christmas, or drinking too much on Christmas Eve making every whisper on Christmas morning sound like Tim Grunhard is banging the drum on the drum deck at Arrowhead, but inside of your head. Of course I’m kidding about all of this. I’m fortunate enough to have outstanding family of my own, as well as on my fiance’s side. I love Christmas and everything that comes with it. Except for Travis Kelce, Nick Bolton, and Lucas Niang still having COVID. We got Tyreek back, though, so I guess this is basically the equivalent of asking for Madden, NBA 2K, and Call of Duty for Christmas and just getting one of them. Still a net win, but could be better.
You may be wondering “Where were the picks for the Saturday games?” Well, a funny thing happened. I forgot to publish them. I will keep a way too long story short here and just let you all know that, in my holiday escapades, I forgot to pack the trusty macbook while going to my in-law’s house for Christmas Eve. Rookie move, but I am a rookie blogger so that’s to be expected. Not everyone is Creed Humphrey. I went AFC in both games, because homerism is running deep in my veins right now, the picks were Browns and Colts over Packers and Cardinals. Hit one, missed one. Moving on to today’s slate.
The 1-1 yesterday moves me to 1-2 on the week straight up. I did hit both covers, so we’re looking at 2-1 on the week ATS. Could be better could be worse. Let’s get to today’s matchups.
Bills (8-6) @ Patriots (9-5) : New England -2.5; O/U 43.5 Betway
If the Bills want to win the AFC East, they have to win today. This one to me is a toss up, and one you really have no frame of reference for. The game they played in Buffalo in early December means nothing, as the conditions they faced are nowhere near what they will see today. With that being said, the favor should land in Buffalo’s court with their passing game having the ability to open up a little bit more compared to what they were able to do last time against New England. But that might not be the best weapon against the Pats. Indy showed last week that to beat the Patriots you need to have a complete game in all three phases. Buffalo will need to do that, and establish a running attack somehow for the first time this season. I think after the loss on SNF and with the magnitude of this game, the mentally stronger team will come out on top here, and that’s not the Bills.
New England 27, Buffalo 23 (Patriots -2.5; Over 43.5) Betway
Rams (10-4) @ Vikings (7-7) : LAR -3; O/U 48.5 Betway
Matthew Stafford vs Kirk Cousins is the ultimate Sunday after Christmas noon game matchup. I know there is a lot of glitz and glam around the Rams this year, but Stafford is still atrocious in his career against teams that make the playoffs. The Vikings are knocking on the door now, and could really help their chances with a win today. The key in this one is going to be the Vikings secondary against Cooper Kupp. This guy is catching everything thrown his way and is trying to be the next Adam Thielen, who is trying to be the next Wes Welker, who was trying to be the next Ed McCaffery. I think you know where I’m going with this. I still think the Rams are frauds, even after a win against the Cardinals who are also frauds. Hot take – the NFC West has been touted as the toughest division in football all year – I guarantee no one from that division represents the NFC in the Super Bowl.
Vikings 33, Rams 24 (Vikings +3; Over 48.5) Betway
Buccaneers (10-4) @ Panthers (5-9) : Tampa Bay -10; O/U 43 Betway
Tom Brady just lost and got embarrassed in a primtime game. Pray for Carolina.
Bucs 35, Panthers 10 (Tampa Bay -10; Over 43) Betway
Ravens (8-6) @ Bengals (8-6) : Cincinnati -3; O/U 45 Betway
This is a scary game to pick not because of what each team is putting on the field, but because of the intangible aspects of it. Baltimore is 13-1 in their last 14 games as an underdog against the spread, 4-0 this year. The spread is 3. So, that would mean to cover Baltimore has to lose by 2 or less, or win. Those two outcomes continue to be what I’m coming to in my head. Cincinnati has a great chance to set themselves up to win this insane division, but I don’t know if I’ve convinced myself that they’re ready yet. Joe Burrow and J’Marr Chase are incredible, but John Harbaugh did a deal with the devil long ago and Baltimore seems to just have some voodoo magic working for them this season despite all of the injuries they have. In typing all of this, I’ve talked myself back into Cincinnati.
Bengals 22, Ravens 20 (Baltimore +3; Under 45) Betway
Giants (4-10) @ Eagles (7-7): Philadelphia -10; O/U 40.5 Betway
The Giants are just bad this year, and putting Daniel Jones on the shelf for the season essentially closed the door on them being competitive from here on out. Saquan is a beast, but he’s not enough to win games on his own, especially behind that offensive line. Philly should roll in this one.
Eagles 29, Giants 13 (Philadelphia -10; Over 40.5) Betway
Chargers (8-6) @ Texans (3-11) : LAC -10; O/U 46 Betway
Brandin Cooks went on the COVID list this week, and I’m pretty confident he’s probably happy about that. Houston is awful and the Chargers schedule again sets them up for a solid bounce back win after getting their soul extracted from their body two Thursdays ago against the Chiefs. If they don’t win this one easily I’d be blown away.
Chargers 31, Texans 12 (LAC -10; Under 46) Betway
Lions (2-11-1) @ Falcons (6-8) : Atlanta -5.5; O/U 43 Betway
I would love to predict the first Lions winning streak of the year, but with Jared Goff and Deandre Swift out today, I just don’t think Detroit has enough to get it done. Atlanta, who has played the role of NFL Mendoza Line quite well this season, gets another win against a depleted Detroit roster and stays on the “in the hunt” graphic until the bitter end.
Falcons 20, Lions 16 (Detroit +5.5; Under 43) Betway
Jags (2-12) @ Jets (3-11) : NYJ -2; O/U 41.5 Betway
This game does not matter. I really don’t have much to say on this one. I like Trevor Lawrence more than I like Zach Wilson, but both of these teams are garbage. New York probably wins because it’s cold outside.
Jets 9, Jags 6 (NYJ -2; Under 41.5) Betway
Bears (4-10) @ Seahawks (5-9) : Seattle -6.5; O/U 42.5 Betway
Another not very intriguing game, but I’ve got a bone to pick. I’ve been waiting all season, especially since Russ came back, for the Seahawks offense to look anything like a competent NFL unit. I drafted DK Metcalf in multiple fantasy leagues because I thought for sure he’d have an incredible season following last year’s meteoric rise. Is this guy good or did people figure him out? What is happening with Russell Wilson? Why are all of these bad games on today? I don’t know, but I do know a guy who is in scouting for the Seahawks (shoutout Flo) and he’s the man, so I’ll take Seattle here.
Seahawks 21, Bears 17 (Chicago +6.5; Under 42.5) Betway
Broncos (7-7 @ Raiders (7-7) : PK; O/U 41.5 Betway
Man, the oddsmakers must think Drew Lock is an absolute liability. The fact that this game is a pick’em with the way Denver has been playing and the way the Raiders have been playing is incredible. The Raiders almost let the Browns reserves beat them last week. Seriously, Nick Mullens almost outdueld Derek Carr. The Raiders are terrible, and if Drew Lock can manage to not absolute sabotage the Broncos, they should without question win this game. Now, Drew Lock certainly possesses the ability to sabotage the game for Denver. But he’s traditionally been good against Las Vegas in his career, so I’m going to follow that trend line. There will not be many points in this one, folks.
Broncos 17, Raiders 15 (Denver PK; Under 41.5) Betway
WFT (6-8) @ Cowboys (10-4) : Dallas -10.5; O/U 46.5 Betway
WFT got some pieces back off of the COVID list, but they just played Tuesday and can’t be at their peak right now. Going into a game where :
- The Cowboys clinch the NFC East with a win
- The Cowboys are back home where they average over 35 points per game
- Micah Parsons is playing like a rabid animal
Look for Dak and the ‘Boys to jump out early in this one and not look back. The Cowboys seem to be hitting a decent stride right now, and a big offensive showing to clinch the division could make them the week 16 NFC champs. Can’t wait until Skip and Shannon debate this tomorrow.
Cowboys 33, WFT 22 (Dallas -10.5; Over 46.5) Betway
Dolphins (7-7) @ Saints (7-7) : Miami -1.5; O/U 37.5 Betway
I feel like I write the same thing about the Saints every week – their defense is absolutely nasty (dirty, some would say), but their offense can’t keep up. Alvin Kamara has to be the most tortured soul in the NFL. The guy is arguably the second coming of Marshall Faulk, and he’s trotting out there with
Taysom Hill, Trevor Siemian, no…..Ian Book as his quarterback. The Saints were laughed at by their own savior Breesus Christ on the week of Christmas nonetheless when they called for help. And they’re going to need some divine intervention to win this game against a scorching hot Miami team on Monday night. Tua and the TuAnon are bringing the insurrection to the Superdome this week.
Dolphins 23, Saints 11 (Miami -1.5; Under 37.5) Betway
Chiefs Steelers game preview is coming your way in about 1 hour!