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Week Twelve Picks, Post Thanksgiving

November 26th, 2017

I’m thankful for the fact that I didn’t have a completely awful day on Thursday. Picks-wise, I mean. Outside of football, it was actually a pretty awesome day. So, yeah, no complaints here.

I went 3-0 straight up and 2-1 against the spread on Thanksgiving. That’s a decent start to a week. Let’s see how many ways I can find to squander the head start.

Here’s what not to expect on Sunday and Monday.

Cleveland (+8) at Cincinnati
The Browns can’t get through an entire season without recording a single win, right? Probably not. But, uh, show me where that win is coming? Doesn’t seem like it’s going to be this week. Bengals by 13.

Chicago (+13.5) at Philadelphia
I don’t know if you’ve heard this somewhere already but the Bears are not a very good football team. Not very good at all. Eagles by at least 20.

Miami (+16.5) at New England
Division games often turn out to be closer than one would guess just from looking at the relative strengths and weaknesses of the two teams. So let’s go with New England, but maybe by as little as three touchdowns.

Buffalo (+10) at Kansas City
It doesn’t really feel like either of these teams is going anywhere right now. But the Chiefs at least are probably still trying. Kansas City by six.

Tampa Bay (+9.5) at Atlanta
The Falcons still look to me like a team that finishes 9-7 at best, more likely 8-8. This and the rematch in Tampa three weeks from now are the winnable games for Atlanta. Falcons by a field goal.

Carolina (-4.5) at NY Jets
The Panthers’ success thus far this season has seemed kind of fake to me. But the Jets’ failure has been pretty real. Carolina by three.

Tennessee (-3) at Indianapolis
When the Titans, now 6-4, get to 10-4 after week 15, there will be talk about whether they can do some actual damage in the postseason. Could they really beat Kansas City on wild card weekend? Then they’ll lose three straight and everyone will act like they always knew it was too good to be true. Tennessee by four.

Seattle (-6.5) at San Francisco
Not a whole lot to watch for here. Seahawks by 10.

New Orleans (+2.5) at LA Rams
It’s been several weeks since the Saints faced a real test. But the Rams surely haven’t taken on an opponent as strong as the Saints all season. I’m going with the home team. Rams by one.

Jacksonville (-5.5) at Arizona
Even offenses that can move the ball through the air effectively have a tough time doing it against the Jaguars D. And since sometimes passing OK is about the extent of Arizona’s half-dimensional offensive attack, I’m not expecting this game to go well for the Cardinals. In fact, given that nothing here remotely favors Arizona, I’m looking for Jacksonville to chase the home fans out of the building early. Jaguars by 17.

Denver (+5) at Oakland
The slightly less bad team is at home, so let’s look for them to even up the season series. Raiders by four.

Green Bay (+14) at Pittsburgh
The Brett Hundley-led Packers offense has averaged 13 points per game. Thirteen. That kind of production doesn’t earn you wins anywhere, let alone against the Steelers on the road. Pittsburgh by 23.

Houston (+7) at Baltimore
The up-and-down Ravens are due for a loss. But the awful Texans are always due for a loss. Baltimore by nine.

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