NFL 2022 Week 17 Prequel

NFL 2022 Week 17 Prequel

Thursday, December 29, 2022, 8pm

Dallas Cowboys (-10) at Tennessee Titans — The 7-8 Titans have lost five straight, including last week at home to previously one—win Houston. They are tied atop the woeful AFC South bu do not hold the tie-breaker. The 11-4 Cowboys are coming off an emotional win over Philadelphia. The chance for a hangover is great and the spread is high given that Tennessee has a defense. Cowboys win but fail to cover

Sunday, January 1, 2023, 1pm

Arizona Cardinals at Atlanta Falcons (-3 1/2) — Both teams are done for the year and down to a backup and third string quarterbacks. Cordarelle Patterson is still a game-breaker. Go with the home field. Falcons win but fail to cover.

Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions (-5 1/2) — The 7-8 Lions still have faint playoff hopes. The Bears are long done. Inside the dome at home, go with the fast-paced Detroit offense. Lions cover

Jacksonville Jaguars (-4) at Houston Texans — The 7-8 Jaguars are tied atop the horrible AFC South and hold the tie-breaker. The Texans have only won twice, including last week at Tennessee. The Texans lose close games. Trevor Lawrence is on a mission and Doug Pederson has them ahead of schedule. Jaguars win but fail to cover

Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs (-13 1/2) — Forget the high spread. The 12-3 Chiefs are tied for the conference lead but do not hold the tie-breaker. The Broncos were obliterated last week by 37 points, getting Nathaniel Hackett and a pair of assistants fired. The Broncos defense normally fights hard, but the Chiefs are on a mission and Patrick Mahomes is playing lights out. Chiefs cover

Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots (-2 1/2) — The Dolphins have lost four straight to fall to 8-7. They still make the playoffs if they win out. The Patriots have lost consecutive games to drop to 7-8 and the brink of playoff elimination. The home team usually wins this game. The Patriots win with defense and running the ball. Go with the home field and the cold weather. Patriots cover

Indianapolis Colts at New York Giants (-5) — The 8-6-1 Giants are in the playoff picture. The Colts are not. The Giants never win easily. Saquon Barkley runs well but Daniel Jones does not engineer blowouts. The Colts lose close games. Giants win but fail to cover

New Orleans Saints at Philadelphia Eagles (-7) — The Saints at 6-9 are only one game back in the lowly NFC South. The 13-2 Eagles have the best record in football but have not locked up their division. They lead the conference by one game and are closing non home field advantage. The Eagles will be angry after losing at archival Dallas last week. Gardner Minshew is not Jalen Hurts, but he is good enough. With Hurts or Minshew, this is a mismatch. Eagles cover

Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3) — The 6-9 Panthers trail the 7-8 Buccaneers in the bad NFC South. Tom Brady has never had a losing season. The Panthers have a decent defense. The Buccaneers barely survived lowly Arizona. Rooting against Brady could be a fool’s errand, but with weather not being a factor, go with the Carolina defense. Upset special, Panthers win outright

Cleveland Browns at Washington Commanders (-2 1/2) — The Browns are done. The Commanders at 7-7-1 are desperate. Last week Taylor Heinecke was benched in favor of Carson Wentz. With nothing to play for but pride, the Browns will not pose a threat. The Commanders have everything to play for and will. Commanders cover


San Francisco 49ers (-5 1/2) at Las Vegas Raiders — The 49ers have a suffocating defense and Brock Purdy is the best Mr. Irrelevant in NFL history. Josh McDaniels needed two years to destroy Denver, but he has taken a wrecking ball to the Raiders in one season. Now McDaniels is announcing the official destruction of the team by benching Derek Carr. Jarrett Stidham will get the nod despite never starting an NFL game. The Carr benching will upset Davante Adams. Josh Jacobs already wants out. Al Davis is rolling over in his grave. McDaniels is as McDaniels does. 49ers cover

New York Jets (-2 1/2) at Seattle Seahawks — Both teams are on life support. Zach Wilson has been benched, most likely for good. Mike White returns rom injury. The Jets have the better defense. Geno Smith would love to beat the team that gave up on him. Pete Carroll would love to get revenge on the team that fired him. Go with the vengeance motive and the 12th man home crowd. Seahawks cover

Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers (-3) — The 12-3 Vikings are one game back in the conference race for home field advantage. The Packers have won three straight and at 7-8 have slim playoff hopes. The Vikings are the better team with explosive offensive weapons, but Aaron Rodgers is on a mission. The Packers are desperate and at home. Packers cover

Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Chargers (-6 1/2) — The Rams get a de facto extra home game. The Rams obliterated Denver by 37 points last week in an otherwise forgettable season. The 9-6 Chargers clinched a playoff birth. Justin Herbert has too many weapons and the Rams are injury-riddled. Yet the spread is too high for a team that wins ugly. There might be more Rams fans in the stands. Chargers win but fail to cover


Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (-3) — The 7-8 Steelers survived their Immaculate Reception rematch and now face a 10-5 Ravens team that has struggled in recent weeks without Lamar Jackson. With these teams, throw out the records. Home field does not matter. The Raiders are in the playoffs but hurting. The Steelers have won four of five as Mike Tomlin seeks to avoid his first losing season. Go with the healthier team unafraid of a hostile environment. The Steelers are built for running the football in cold weather. Upset special, Steelers win outright

January 2, 2023, 8pm

Buffalo Bills (-1) at Cincinnati Bengals — This is the biggest match between these teams since 1988. The 12-3 Bills are tied atop the AFC and own the tie-breaker in the race for home field advantage. The 11-4 Bengals are one game back. This is a heavyweight prize fight. Josh Allen and Joe Burrow are both for real. Both teams have a good defense. In cold weather, expect a hard-nosed fight. These teams are dead even, so go with the home field. Upset special, Bengals win outright



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