Hello and welcome back to The Cowan Corner for another week of NFL picks and predictions.
The NFL season enters its homestretch this week as five weeks remain in the regular season and the last NFL teams have their bye week.
December is a month where games are played in colder temperatures around the league and it will be interesting to see which teams perform as the pressure to make the playoffs intensify.
Without further ado, let’s get into this week’s picks.
Cowboys over Vikings
The Cowboys franchise-record 10-game winning streak is on the line in this game and I see it continuing this week.
I just don’t see the Vikings scoring enough to beat out the well-oiled machine that is the Cowboys’ offensive unit.
Falcons over Chiefs
This has potential to be a high-paced explosive game between two playoff contenders. I think the Chiefs defense is overrated and Matt Ryan should be able to burn them for enough scores to get the win.
Lions over Saints
The Lions hold sole possession of first place in the NFC North, which is not something I thought I would be writing in December.
Regardless, this will likely be like almost every Lions win this season where they trail for the entire game before finding some way to pull it out.
Patriots over Rams
There is absolutely no chance the Rams will win against the Patriots on the road. If I were Jeff Fisher, I might start working on my resume with the way this season has gone for his team.
Broncos over Jaguars
The Broncos currently sit outside of the AFC playoff picture due to tiebreakers and need a win this week to get back on track.
Luckily for them, they play the Jaguars who are the NFL’s resident punching bag.
Packers over Texans
The Packers finally showed some life Monday night with a win over the Eagles, but are still not a playoff team.
They play the Texans who are only a potential playoff team because of the division they play in. I will take the Packers at home this week.
Eagles over Bengals
AJ Green is expected to return this season, but he will not be suiting up for the Bengals this week and their offense will be heavily affected by it.
This might end up being a close game, but I will go with the Eagles here.
Dolphins over Ravens
Since 1978, nine teams have made the playoffs after a 1-4 start. The Dolphins are in position to be the tenth after a six-game winning streak has them currently as the sixth-seed in the AFC.
They play on the road this week, but the Ravens have yet to impress me in any of their wins and so I will go with the Dolphins to continue their streak.
Bears over 49ers
This is what the whole season has been leading towards, folks. Two struggling franchises meet to determine who will make the second overall pick in the 2017 draft after Cleveland inevitably whiffs on the first overall pick.
I guess I will take the Bears since they play at home and have at least shown life as of late.
Raiders over Bills
I cannot figure out if the Bills are good or not, but I know for certain that the Raiders are good and that makes my pick in this game pretty easy.
Giants over Steelers
Everyone keeps saying the Cowboys are the best team in the NFC, but the Giants are quietly lurking just two games back in the division and already have a win over Dallas.
The Giants will need a win to keep pace in the division and I think they will do it here.
Redskins over Cardinals
The Cardinals do have homefield advantage, but they are in rough shape. On the other hand, the Redskins have looked good the last couple of weeks and are playing on a few extra days rest.
Chargers over Buccaneers
The Buccaneers surprised a lot of people the past couple weeks with their wins over the Chiefs and the Seahawks, but I think their run ends here.
The Chargers are not a playoff team, but they are still good and should do enough to pick up the win here.
Seahawks over Panthers
The Panthers season is basically over at this point, but they have a chance to make a final stand in Seattle.
The Panthers did win the last time the two teams met here, but I see the result going the other way this time around.
Jets over Colts
The only winner here is those who enjoy watching bad football. I will go with the Jets because they are the home team and will otherwise ignore this game entirely.
That does it for this week’s picks. Check back next week for more NFL picks and analysis of the week that was in football.
Week 12: 13-3