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RJ’s NFL Picks, 2012 Edition: Week Fourteen

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I went 10-6 last week straight up, and 5-10-1 against the spread. For the season, that puts me at 123-69 straight up and 90-94-8 against the spread. For a comparison, check out the “experts” over at ESPN.com.

What follows are my picks for the NFL’s Week 14:

*Thursday, December 6*

Denver (9-3) at Oakland (3-9) – 8:20 p.m. (Line: Denver by 10)

The Broncos have won seven straight games, but the last three have been fairly close. The Raiders have lost five in a row.

—RJ’s Pick: Denver by 5

*Sunday, December 9*

St. Louis (5-6-1) at Buffalo (5-7) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: BUFFALO BY 3)

The Rams are 0-3 against AFC East teams so far this year. The Bills are 3-2 at home.

—RJ’s Pick: Buffalo by 6

Dallas (6-6) at Cincinnati (7-5) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: CINCINNATI BY 3.5)

This is a huge game for both teams. The Cowboys haven’t held an opponent under 20 points since Week Nine (a loss). The Bengals have won four in a row.

—RJ’s Pick: Cincinnati by 7

Kansas City (2-10) at Cleveland (4-8) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: CLEVELAND BY 5.5)

Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles has rushed for at least 100 yards in three of his last four games. Browns rookie WR Josh Gordon has caught 15 passes for 229 yards over his last three games.

—RJ’s Pick: Cleveland by 2

Tennessee (4-8) at Indianapolis (8-4) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: INDIANAPOLIS BY 5)

The Titans are 0-4 against divisional opponents so far this season. The Colts are 5-1 at home.

—RJ’s Pick: Indianapolis by 8

Chicago (8-4) at Minnesota (6-6) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: Chicago by 3)

The Bears have lost three of their last four games. Their lone victory in that stretch came against Minnesota. The Vikings are 5-1 at home this year. Quarterback Christian Ponder has thrown for more than 200 yards just twice in his last six games, and for more than 150 yards just three times in his last six outings.

—RJ’s Pick: Minnesota by 3

Philadelphia (3-9) at Tampa Bay (6-6) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: TAMPA BAY BY 7)

The Eagles have lost eight straight. The Buccaneers have scored at least 23 points in every game since Week Four…when they scored 22.

—RJ’s Pick: Tampa Bay by 11

Baltimore (9-3) at Washington (6-6) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: WASHINGTON BY 2.5)

Ravens QB Joe Flacco has thrown just two touchdown passes in his last three games. His passer ratings in his last three games are 75.5, 86.6, and just 61.9 last week. The Redskins have won three straight.

—RJ’s Pick: Washington by 8

Atlanta (11-1) at Carolina (3-9) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: Atlanta by 3.5)

The Falcons have already clinched the NFC South. They can clinch home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with just two more victories. The Panthers at just 1-5 at home this season.

—RJ’s Pick: Atlanta by 7

New York Jets (5-7) at Jacksonville (2-10) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: New York Jets by 2.5)

As of this writing, no one knows who will be starting under center for the Jets this week. It could be Mark Sanchez, who was benched last week after throwing three interceptions and completing just 48 percent of his passes for a QB rating of 21.4. It could be Greg McElroy, who replaced Sanchez and led the Jets to their only score of the game. Or it could even be Tim Tebow, who was not active last week due to some broken ribs. The Jaguars have the NFL’s second worst point differential.

—RJ’s Pick: New York Jets by 9

San Diego (4-8) at Pittsburgh (7-5) – 1:00 p.m. (Line: No Line)

The Chargers have lost their last four games. The Steelers are 4-1 at home this season. There was no line for this matchup at the time of publication.

—RJ’s Pick: Pittsburgh by 14

Miami (5-7) at San Francisco (8-3-1) – 4:05 p.m. (Line: SAN FRANCISCO BY 10)

Dolphins left tackle Jake Long suffered a triceps injury last week, and could be out for the remainder of the season. Colin Kaepernick will remain the starting quarterback for the 49ers this week, despite making some questionable decisions in last week’s loss to St. Louis.

—RJ’s Pick: San Francisco by 6

Arizona (4-8) at Seattle (7-5) – 4:25 p.m. (Line: SEATTLE BY 10)

The Cardinals have lost eight games in a row. The Seahawks are undefeated at home this season, but are 0-3 against divisional opponents.

—RJ’s Pick: Seattle by 4

New Orleans (5-7) at New York Giants (7-5) – 4:25 p.m. (Line: NEW YORK GIANTS BY 5)

The Saints need to win their last four games to have any realistic chance of making the playoffs. They are just 2-4 on the road this season. The Giants have lost three of their last four and are at risk of falling out of first place in the NFC East.

—RJ’s Pick: New York Giants by 1

Detroit (4-8) at Green Bay (8-4) – 8:20 p.m. (Line: GREEN BAY BY 6.5)

The Lions have lost four in a row, including three straight home games in which they held a fourth quarter lead. The Packers are 5-1 at home this season. I strongly discourage readers from taking my advice on this pick.

—RJ’s Pick: Detroit by 3

*Monday, December 10*

Houston (11-1) at New England (9-3) – 8:30 p.m. (Line: NEW ENGLAND BY 3.5)

This is quite possibly a preview of the AFC Championship Game. The Texans have the league’s second best offense in terms of points scored per game; the Patriots have the best. The Texans are ranked fourth in total yards of offense; the Patriots are ranked first. The Texans, however, are allowing just 18.4 points per game, while the Patriots are allowing 21.7.

Key questions: How many of Tom Brady’s passes will J.J. Watt get a hand on? How many times will J.J. Watt get his hands on Tom Brady? Which Texans defense will show up? The one that gave up 42 points to Green Bay, 37 points to Jacksonville, and 31 points to Detroit? Or the one that held Chicago to 6 points, Buffalo to 9, Tennessee to 10, and Baltimore to 13?

—RJ’s Pick: New England by 10

[If you’re interested, you can check out the full list of Danny Sheridan’s Odds here.]

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About RJ

  • C2E

    Your answers to the questions posed in the Game of the Week analysis apparently are as follows:

    Not many
    None
    The Former

    Have to disagree:

    A couple
    At least once, but look out for Antonio!
    The former in the latter part of Q1, first part of Q2, latter part of Q3 and most of Q4; the former otherwise.

    Texans defense will decide the outcome. Shake Brady and they win. No sweat Brady, they lose.

    Texans by 4.

  • C2E

    Former/latter error.

    Defense plays well in latter part of Q1, first part of Q2, latter part of Q3 and most of Q4. Plays poorly and allows 20 or so points otherwise.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Final Score:

    Denver 26, Oakland 13 – RJ 1-0 (0-1 ATS)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    FINAL SCORES:

    RAMS 15, BILLS 12 – RJ 1-1 (0-2 ATS)

    DALLAS 20, BENGALS 19 – RJ 1-2 (0-3 ATS)

    BROWNS 30, KC 7 – RJ 2-2 (0-4 ATS)

    COLTS 27, TITANS 23 – RJ 3-2 (0-5 ATS)

    VIKINGS 21, BEARS 14 – RJ 4-2 (1-5 ATS)

    EAGLES 23, TB 21 – RJ 4-3 (1-6 ATS)

    REDSKINS 31, RAVENS 28 (IN OT) – RJ 5-3 (2-6 ATS)

    CAROLINA 30, ATLANTA 20 – RJ 5-4 (2-7 ATS)

    JETS 17, JACKSONVILLE 10 – RJ 6-4 (3-7 ATS)

    SD 34, STEELERS 24 – RJ 6-5 (3-8 ATS)

    SF 27, MIAMI 13 – RJ 7-5 (3-9 ATS)

    SEATTLE 58, ARIZONA 0 – RJ 8-5 (3-10 ATS)

    GIANTS 52, NO 27 – RJ 9-5 (3-11 ATS)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    FINAL SCORE:

    GB 27, LIONS 20 – RJ 9-6 (3-12 ATS)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Final Score:

    Patriots 42, Texans 14 – RJ 10-6 (4-12 ATS)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    C2E:

    Houston’s defense has looked pretty awful in three of their last four games now. It might be time for Texans fans to worry. Heck, they not only run the risk of falling out of the top seed in the AFC, but they could realistically fail to even win their division! (Two of their three remaining games are against the Colts, who are two games back in the AFC South.)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    RJ through 14 weeks:

    133-75 straight up

    94-106-8 against the spread

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    ESPN’s NFL “experts” in Week 14:

    Allen
    12-4
    Golic
    7-9
    Hoge
    9-7
    Jaworski
    9-7
    Mortensen
    10-6
    Schefter
    11-5
    Schlereth
    12-4
    Wickersham
    11-5
    Jackson
    10-6
    Johnson
    10-6
    Ditka
    11-5
    Carter
    11-5
    Accuscore
    10-6
    Pick ‘em
    9-7

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    ESPN’s NFL “experts” through 14 weeks:

    Allen
    124-84
    Golic
    128-80
    Hoge
    135-73
    Jaworski
    136-72
    Mortensen
    146-62
    Schefter
    131-77
    Schlereth
    133-75
    Wickersham
    146-62
    Jackson
    128-80
    Johnson
    125-83
    Ditka
    130-78
    Carter
    137-71
    Accuscore
    131-77
    Pick ‘em
    133-74

  • C2E

    Texans were just awful. Sort of a depressed mood in Houston today. Texans have injuries on defense, but they just don’t seem to match up with Green Bay or the Pats. They can’t air it out with the top QBs.

    It’s one thing to get beat…Pats were likely to do that. But to get outplayed on so many levels was embarrassing!