NFL WEEK 12 PICKS

2022-11-22 · 6 min read · NFL/Football
Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals

Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports | AP Photo/Jeff Dean

We are down to the final seven weeks of the NFL season, and there are some pivotal games this week, beginning with a triple-header on American Thanksgiving this Thursday.
For the first time since early October, all 32 teams will be in action in what promises to be a week full of entertainment and drama.
Here is a breakdown of every game and my predictions.
New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings
The Patriots are on a roll, winning their last three games and have been virtually impossible to throw or run against, allowing just 103 total yards against the Jets, while they have 36 sacks, second-most in the NFL.
The Vikings easily had their worst outing of the season last week, as one of the top receivers, Justin Jefferson, was held to just three catches for 33 yards while they allowed seven sacks.
  • Prediction- New England Patriots 24-20 Minnesota Vikings
The 2022 Patriots will not go down as the most exciting we’ve ever seen, but they are as stingy as they come on the defensive line, and I expect they’ll hurry and sack Kirk Cousins plenty of times on Thursday.
Buffalo Bills at Detroit Lions
The Bills ended a two-game losing streak last Sunday with a solid ground game as Devin Singletary ran for 86 yards, while Josh Allen cleaned up the mistakes we saw him make over the past two weeks, as he threw zero INTs.
Out of nowhere, the Lions are on a three-game winning streak, winning the turnover battle last week, picking off Daniel Jones and the Giants twice and recovering one fumble.
  • Prediction- Buffalo Bills 27-24 Detroit Lions
The Lions have improved, but their defense still gave up 413 yards to the Giants in their victory last Sunday and if they allow those kinds of numbers to the likes of Allen and Stefon Diggs, they can expect to concede their share of major scores.
New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
The Giants are fresh off their worst performance of the season against one of the worst defenses in the league, as they struggled to convert third downs going 5/13 in that category on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Dallas is coming off their best outing of the season as they left no doubt in Minnesota, with seven sacks, while Dak Prescott was brilliant, going 22/25 for 276 yards and two touchdowns.
  • Prediction-New York Giants 17-24 Dallas Cowboys
There are too many quick and physical linebackers for the Giants’ O-line to contend with in this one, so expect Jones to see pressure early and often in Big D.
Denver Broncos at Carolina Panthers
Defense has been the backbone of the Broncos success all season, but it let them down on Sunday as they allowed 407 yards to the Las Vegas Raiders, including conceding the game-tying field goal and the game-winning touchdown in overtime after only three plays.
Not much has changed in Carolina despite having a new head coach; they’re still poor on both sides of the ball, putting up three points in a 13-3 loss to Baltimore, while Baker Mayfield tossed two picks.
  • Prediction- Denver Broncos 14-10 Carolina
The Broncos haven’t put up many points in their victories this season, but lucky for them the Panthers have a hard time scoring.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Cleveland Browns
Tampa’s offense is by no means blowing teams away, but Brady and his side are slowly climbing back into the playoff conversation, beating a solid Seahawks team in Germany two weeks ago.
Cleveland is stuck with Jacoby Brissett for another week, and he did his part throwing three touchdown passes in their last game, however, they couldn’t sustain long drives against the Bills because their running game was ineffective as Nick Chubb had just 19 yards on the ground, while Kareem Hunt had 32.
  • Prediction- Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-28 Cleveland Browns
Brady seems to have rediscovered some of his old magic, and that’s bad news for a Browns defense that gave up 357 yards against Buffalo.
Baltimore Ravens at Jacksonville Jaguars
Last Sunday was like a blast from the past as the Ravens’ defense cleaned up on the Panthers with three turnovers, limiting them to just three points in a 13-3 victory.
The Jags are fresh off a bye week, and they needed the rest after Patrick Mahomes, and the Chiefs put up 486 yards against them, as they allowed a 7.8-yard average per play.
  • Prediction- Baltimore Ravens 17-14 Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars’ run game has been outstanding this season, while they’ve also produced their fair share of takeaways, but they can’t seem to turn those momentum shifts in their favour and capitalize.
Houston Texans at Miami Dolphins
Most teams have handled the Texans pretty decisively this season, including in their last outing when Davis Mills threw a pair of picks and the Houston defense allowed 153 yards on the ground to the Washington Commanders.
Miami has lived up to their offensive hype this season, second in average passing yards per game (293.8) and third in total yards offensively (391.5), while Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill have been a nightmare for opposing teams to defend.
  • Prediction- Houston Texans 10-44 Miami Dolphins
It will probably be the most significant mismatch of the weekend as the Texans’ 29th-ranked defense have to try and contend with two of the most dangerous receivers in the league.
Houston’s offense is the worst in the NFL so it could be another long afternoon for Lovie Smith and company.
Chicago Bears at New York Jets
All eyes will be squarely on the condition of Bears quarterback Justin Fields who was carted off with a shoulder injury against the Falcons, and his status is unknown for this weekend.
The Jets couldn’t muster anything positive against the Patriots’ suffocating defense last Sunday as Zach Wilson threw for just 77 yards, while New York put up just 103 total yards in a 10-3 defeat.
  • Prediction- Chicago Bears 14-21 New York Jets
The Jets’ strength lies in their defense, and regardless of Fields’s health, we expect Robert Saleh’s team will provide blanket coverage, create some turnovers, and grind out a victory.
Cincinnati Bengals at Tennessee Titans
Incredibly Joe Burrow was sacked just two times last week, a rarity for him as he and his Bengals put up 408 yards against the Steelers, winning 37-30.
An accurate Ryan Tannehill and an effective Derrick Henry usually spells victory for the Titans, and that’s what Mike Vrabel’s crew produced last Thursday at Lambeau, winning 27-17 over the Packers.
Atlanta Falcons at Washington Commanders
The Falcons managed to overcome two fumbles lost while allowing 160 rushing yards, but they still got four quarterback sacks in a 27-24 win over the Chicago Bears.
Washington seems to be back in business, winning back-to-back contests as Taylor Heinicke had another solid outing versus the Texans, throwing for 191 yards, while their defense produced five sacks.
  • Prediction- Atlanta Falcons 19-28 Washington Commanders
Marcus Mariotta doesn’t make as many poor decisions as he used to, but he doesn’t produce many significant gains, while the Commanders have improved in virtually every statistical category since Heinicke took over the starting role.
Los Angeles Chargers at Arizona Cardinals
The Chargers put up another good fight against the Chiefs but allowing 485 yards to the opposition is not going to win many ball games, regardless of who you have as your quarterback.
Another game without Kyler Murray and the Cardinals offense looked ordinary once again as they could only score 10 points in the high altitude of Mexico City, falling 38-10 to the San Francisco 49ers on Monday Night Football.
  • Prediction- Los Angeles Chargers 30-27 Arizona Cardinals
Justin Herbert doesn’t have a lot of weapons at his disposal at the moment, but he still finds ways to keep his team competitive.
Las Vegas Raiders at Seattle Seahawks
A week after seeing a weepy Derek Carr at a loss for words at the podium, he and his offense stepped up when it mattered most as the Raiders pivot threw for 307 yards and two TDs, including the game-winner in overtime after just three plays in a victory over the Broncos.
Seattle had a week off after narrowly falling 21-16 to the Buccaneers in a game where Geno Smith was a little less accurate than we have become used to seeing, completing under 70% of his passes, though he has a completion percentage for the season at 72.8%.
  • Prediction- Las Vegas Raiders 24-30 Seattle Seahawks
The Raiders showed last week they can be an explosive offense, but they have not gotten much pressure on opposing quarterbacks, and when Geno Smith has time in the pocket, he’s shown he can make you pay.
Los Angeles Rams at Kansas City Chiefs
The Super Bowl champs keep sinking further and further down the proverbial quicksand, and without Cooper Kupp to throw to, they had a hard time making big plays against the Saints, throwing for under 200 yards in that loss.
Try as their opponents might, no one seems to be able to contain Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs’ offense right now as he tossed three TD passes in a 30-27 win over the Chargers.
All his TD throws went to Travis Kelce, who had 115 yards on six catches, all in a day’s work for these two superstars.
  • Prediction- Los Angeles Rams 10-27 Kansas City Chiefs
The Rams were already a disaster before Kupp got hurt; without him, the Chiefs should have a field day, though perhaps they’ll show a bit of mercy, given how bad Los Angeles is in the running and passing game.
New Orleans Saints at San Francisco 49ers
There’s nothing like playing a team as broken mentally and physically as the Rams are right now to restore one’s confidence and the Saints’ Andy Dalton looked sharp against them last week, tossing three touchdowns, while Chris Olave had five grabs for 102 yards and a major score.
As impressive as that was, the Niners outshined them on Monday Night Football as Jimmy Garoppolo had four touchdown throws, while George Kittle looked more like himself, making two TD catches.
  • Prediction- New Orleans Saints 14-24 San Francisco 49ers
The Niners are starting to find their rhythm offensively, and I didn’t even mention that they’re the top-rated defense in the league, allowing a league-low 283.9 yards per game.
Green Bay Packers at Philadelphia Eagles
The Packers’ momentum didn’t last long as they were shut down by the Tennessee Titans on Thursday Night Football, allowing 408 yards.
Philly has feasted off turnovers this season, leading the league with a +12 differential, but they showed last week they can win in other ways as Jalen Hurts found seven different receivers for at least one catch, and he ran for 86 yards in a 17-16 triumph over the Indianapolis Colts.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Indianapolis Colts
The growing pains continued in Steeltown last week as the Pittsburgh defense allowed 408 yards to the Bengals while they missed half of their third down conversions in a narrow 37-30 loss.
Indy has looked much more competitive since Jeff Saturday took over, as they were narrowly beaten by the Eagles 17-16, and Matt Ryan went another game without throwing an interception.
  • Prediction- Pittsburgh Steelers 10-17 Indianapolis Colts
The Colts look like a different team in the early stages under Saturday, and Matt Ryan looks a lot more like the intelligent and savvy veteran we remember, while the Steelers are still trying to figure out their steep learning curve with a new man behind centre.
Sports Tree Profile

By: Joel Lefevre

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