Week 13 NFL Predictions
By Michelle Jinks @TheSportsJinks
Last Weekâ€™s Record:Â 9-7
Season Total: 99-67
Green Bay (7-4) at Detroit (4-7)
Series Record: Packers lead 98-68-7
Last Meeting: Nov 15 2015 â€“ Detroit won 18-16 at Green Bay
Detroit is on a three game win streak, a win streak that ironically began with their win over Green Bay at Lambeau Field in November. They are certainly playing the better ball of the two at this point in the season. The Packers continued to struggle on offense last week, as Aaron Rodgers threw two more picks at home.Â They canâ€™t afford a sweep by the Lions if there are any hopes to remain in the playoff hunt. But Rodgers and his receivers must connect to make this happen.
My Pick: GREEN BAY
NY Jets (6-5) at NY Giants (5-6)
Series Record: Giants lead 8-4-0
Last Meeting: Nov 24 2011 â€“ Giants won 29-14
The Giants failed to keep hold of the NFC East with their loss to Washington last week. Instead, they find themselves needing a win to stay with the Redskins. However, in the NFC East each week presents another scenario. The Jets are mathematically still in position to get a wildcard spot in the playoffs. Theyâ€™ll be without Darrelle Revis for this game which leaves Eli Manning and Odell Beckham Jr open for target practice against his replacement. The Giants have won the last five meetings.
My Pick: NY GIANTS
Arizona (9-2) at St. Louis (4-7)
Series Record: Tied 36-36-2
Last Meeting: Oct 4 2015 â€“ St. Louis won 24-22 at Arizona
If we looked at the records and the way St. Louis has played this season one might think this should be an easy victory for the Arizona Cardinals. But the funny thing about Jeff Fisherâ€™s team is that they play their best ball within the division. Fisher is hoping Todd Gurley and Nick Foles can have the same type of performance as they had in their first meeting with Arizona. The Rams have dropped four straight games, while Arizona is riding a five game win streak.
My Pick: ST. LOUIS
Atlanta (6-5) at Tampa Bay (5-6)
Series Record: Tied 22-22-0
Last Meeting: Nov 1 2015 â€“ Tampa won 23-20 OT in Atlanta
In the first meeting, the Bucs went up 20-3 before Matt Ryan got hot in the second half. He threw for nearly 400 yards and two touchdowns, while Jameis Winston threw for under 200 yards with one passing touchdown and one rushing score. The loss to the Bucs started Atlanta on a downward spiral with four straight losses. Itâ€™s been just the opposite for Tampa. The Bucs have won three of their last five games. The last time the Bucs swept the series was 2007.
My Pick: TAMPA BAY
Carolina (11-0) at New Orleans (4-7)
Series Record: Panthers lead 22-19-0
Last Meeting: Nov 27 2015 â€“ Carolina won 27-22 at home
Carolina took all their frustrations about being underdogs to a 3 win team out on the Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving. In fact, the disrespect from media and football fans has fueled this Panthers team all season. With every win there is doubt about how good this team really is. Itâ€™s safe to say after an 11-0 start that these men are for real. New Orleans is looking much like the team from last season. Theyâ€™re having serious issues on both sides of the ball as Drew Brees continues to struggle and the offense is out of sync. Newton is 5-4 vs. New Orleans and 2-2 at the Superdome.
My Pick: CAROLINA
Seattle (6-5) at Minnesota (8-3)
Series Record: Seahawks lead 8-5-0
Last Meeting: Nov 17 2013 â€“ Seattle won 41-20 at home
This couldâ€™ve been a matchup between â€œbeast-mode (Marshawn Lynch)â€ and â€œall-day (Adrian Peterson)â€ instead we can talk about Russell Wilson and Teddy Bridgewater. The Steelers game plan last week to keep Wilson in the pocket did not work, as he lit the Steelers defense up for 345 yards and five touchdowns.Â Heâ€™ll be without Jimmy Graham, who was lost for the season.Â Bridgewater has Peterson and pretty much thatâ€™s a great start. The machine known as A.P. gets stronger as the game goes. Yardage will be tougher to come by this week against a stingy Seahawks defense. Playoff position is a stake for Seattle.
My Pick: MINNESOTA
Houston (6-5) at Buffalo (5-6)
Series Record: Texans lead 4-3-0
Last Meeting: Sept 28 2014 â€“ Houston won 23-17 at home
The Texans are finally playing like a team with a dominant defense, which has led them to five straight wins and a share of the lead in the NFC North.Â It can also be said that Houston didnâ€™t begin playing well until Bill Oâ€™Brien settled on a starter at quarterback. Nothing has gone as expected in Buffalo. The defense is declining each week and there has been inconsistent play at quarterback. Buffaloâ€™s defense should be aided by the return of Mario Williams.
My Pick: BUFFALO
Baltimore (4-7) at Miami (4-7)
Series Record: Ravens lead 7-5-0
Last Meeting: Dec 7 2014 â€“ Baltimore won 28-13 at Miami
Baltimore has won three of their last four games and two straight. Matt Schaub is 1-0 in Baltimore after playing for the injured Joe Flacco in a last second win over Cleveland last week. Different coach, same problems! Miami is 1-4 over the last five games. They release the offensive coordinator after another poor showing by the offense in a loss to the NY Jets. Now Ryan Tannehill will have the opportunity to put his stamp on the offense. At this point you have to try everything.
My Pick: BALTIMORE
Cincinnati (9-2) at Cleveland (2-9)
Series Record: Bengals lead 45-39-0
Last Meeting: Nov 5 2014 â€“ Cincinnati won 31-10 at home
Cleveland was a field goal away from picking up their third win of the season but ended up losing to Baltimore after the kick was blocked in the final seconds. The Browns will start the third different quarterback for the season.Â Austin Davis gets his first start of the season. For Cincinnati, this game is simple. They are two wins away from clinching the division but that quest begins in Cleveland.
My Pick: CINCINNATI
Jacksonville (4-7) at Tennessee (2-9)
Series Record: Titans lead 23-19-0
Last Meeting: Nov 19 2015 â€“ Jacksonville won 19-13 at home
Jacksonville has played well the last few weeks. These games donâ€™t always result in wins. Blake Bortles has to limit turnovers for the Jaguars to have a chance.Â Marcus Mariota has had an up and down season, as expected for the rookie.Â Give Jacksonville an edge on defense but Tennessee should have the edge offensively.Â Besides, Bortles will be without his top receiver.
My Pick: TENNESSEE
San Francisco (3-8) at Chicago (5-6)
Series Record: 49ers lead 32-30-1
Last Meeting: Sept 14 2014 â€“ Chicago won 28-20 at San Francisco
The Bears have come back to life over the last three weeks. The defense is playing better and Jay Cutler and crew are moving the ball downfield. Blaine Gabbert won his season debut but hasnâ€™t been able to keep the magic going in San Francisco. Still, you can see the improvements in the 49er offense with Gabbert under center.Â Sometimes a small thing can inspire an entire team.
My Pick: CHICAGO
Denver (9-2) at San Diego (2-9)
Series Record: Broncos lead 61-49-0
Last Meeting: Dec 14 2014 â€“ Denver won 22-10 at San Diego
This is the perfect game for San Diego to steal a victory.Â Denver is coming off an upset win over the depleted New England Patriots without Peyton Manning. A letdown is possible after such a big win. But the Chargers will need to move the ball consistently on a tough Broncos defense. Philip Rivers has the capability to come up with huge performances from time to time. Now would be the perfect time.
My Pick: SAN DIEGO
Kansas City (6-5) at Oakland (5-6)
Series Record: Chiefs lead 58-52-2
Last Meeting: Dec 14 2014 â€“ Kansas City won 31-13 at home
Andy Reid has his Kansas City Chiefs playing great. Theyâ€™ve won five straight games led by a defense that has forced 14 turnovers.Â Alex Smith is finding his wide receivers and when he canâ€™t he’s using his legs to keep drives going.Â The Raiders got back on the winning track last week as Derek Carr and Amari Cooper were back to having the stellar games theyâ€™ve had all season. Theyâ€™ll need plenty of that duo against the Chiefs defense.Â The Chiefs will be without Justin Houston for this game. Should be a back and forth contest.
My Pick: OAKLAND
Philadelphia (4-7) at New England (10-1)
Series Record: Tied 6-6-0
Last Meeting: Nov 27 2011 â€“ New England won 38-20 at Philadelphia
New England lost for the first time all season, but they lost even more than they couldâ€™ve imagine when Rob Gronkowski went down with a new injury. Tom Brady was already playing with Julian Edelmam, Armendola and a few others on offense.Â Philadelphia doesnâ€™t have that problem. Sam Bradford should be back in the lineup for the Eagles. Theyâ€™ll have a tough time defeating an upset Brady in New England.
My Pick: NEW ENGLAND
Indianapolis (6-5) at Pittsburgh (6-5)
Series Record:Â Steelers lead 21-6-0
Last Meeting: Oct 26 2014 â€“ Pittsburgh won 51-34 at Indianapolis
Ben Rothlisberger suffered a concussion in the Steelers loss to Seattle last week. Or did he? Heâ€™ll be back on the field to try and keep Pittsburgh in the conversation for a wildcard berth. Matt Hasselbeck is still undefeated in Indianapolis.Â Heâ€™ll face a tough Steelers defense on the road this week.Â Not to mention the Colts defense will need to contend with the speedy Pittsburgh receivers and the revitalized DeAngelo Williams.
My Pick: PITTSBURGH
Dallas (3-8) at Washington (5-6)
Series Record: Cowboys lead 65-43-2
Last Meeting: Dec 28 2014 â€“ Dallas won 44-17 at Washington
Matt Cassel will once again run the show for the Cowboys after Tony Romo reinjured his clavicle and is out for the season.Â Cassel went 0-4 in his first stint, but played well enough on occasion to put the team in position for wins. Washington has waited for this game all season. With their win over the New York Giants last week, the Redskins can move one game in front of the Giants for first place in the division. Not to mention they can defeat their most hated rival along the way.
My Pick: WASHINGTON