NFL Picks

Pop’s Picks Week 17: New Year’s Day Picks!

Panthers win again, Packers stay alive, and Lions recover from face-kicking and win.

Pop’s Notepad: An expected firing and scapegoat benching. I expected the Broncos to fire Nathaniel Hackett, as it isn’t the first time an assistant coach doesn’t work out as a head coach. As far as the Raiders benching David Carr, it’s the least of their problems. Mark Davis should address the more significant issues after the season ends.

After this week, the playoff picture should become more apparent, as many teams are still in the hunt. After a horrible start, a team like the Panthers controls their destiny have an excellent chance to be in the postseason. All they have to do is to win the next two games, and they win the division. 

Pop’s record last week: 

Week: Straight up 12-4-0 Spread 10-5-1
Season: Straight up 138-86-2 Spread 118-101-6

Cowboys (11-4) at Titans (7-8)
Line: Cowboys are favoured by 12

Thursday 8:15 AMZN

The Cowboys got back in the win column last week with a confidence-building victory against the Eagles. Titans continue this strange season where losing games is becoming too commonplace. Meaningless game for the Titans, as they are thinking of their game against the Jaguars next week for the division title. 

Cowboys win but don’t cover.
Cowboys lead 8-7-0.

Cardinals (4-11) at Falcons (5-10)
Line: Falcons are favoured by 3.5.

Sunday at 1:00 PM FOX

The Cardinals gave the Buccaneers all they could handle last week but lost in overtime. Falcons haven’t won a game in more than a month, but Desmond Ridder is improving and will notch his first NFL victory.

Falcons win and cover.
Cardinals lead the Series 17-15-0.

Dolphins (8-7) at Patriots (7-8)
Line: Patriots are favoured by 3

Sunday at 1:00 CBS

The Dolphins are imploding and losing themselves out of a playoff spot. Tua is on concussion protocol and probably won’t play. The Patriots competed hard against the Bengals but came up short. The Dolphins continue their losing streak.

Patriots win and cover.
Dolphins lead the Series 60-54-0.

Saints (6-9) at Eagles (13-2)
Line: Eagles are favoured by 6

Sunday at 1 PM FOX

The Eagles win and clinch the top seed in the NFC. They will get it done. The Saints are playing better but are no match for the Eagles.

Eagles win and cover.
Eagles lead the Series 19-15-0.

Colts (4-9-1) at Giants (8-6-1)
Line: Giants are favoured by 6.

Sunday at 1 PM CBS

The Giants played the Vikings tough and almost left with a victory but were denied by a 61-yard field goal. This week Giants win and are in; the Colts are out, and maybe Saturday is in for next year.

Giants win and cover.
Colts lead the Series 12-7-0.

Panthers (6-9) at Buccaneers (7-8)
Line: Bucs are favoured by 3.

Sunday at 1:00 PM FOX

The Bucs are going the wrong way at season end. The Panthers may catapult over the Bucs and land in first place after a dismal start of the season. I’m taking the points and the Panthers.

Panthers win. 
Panthers led the series 25-19-0.

Broncos (4-11) at Chiefs (12-3)
Saturday at 1:00 PM CBS

Line: Chiefs are favoured by 12.5.

Expectedly the ownership group of the Broncos, in a very business-like fashion, fired their Coach Hackett and can start to look for his replacement early. The Chiefs will use this game as a playoff tune-up and win.

Chiefs win but don’t cover.
Chiefs lead the series 70-55-0.

Bears (3-12) at Lions (7-8)
Line: Lions are favoured by 6

Sunday at 1:00 PM FOX

After getting kicked in the face by the Panthers, the Lions are still in the playoff hunt; Bears are playing for the future. These two teams are long-standing rivals that will fight hard on Sunday. 

Lions win and cover.
Bears lead the series 104-76-5.

Browns (6-9) at Commanders (7-7-1)
Line: Commanders are favoured by 2

Sunday at 1:00 PM FOX

The Browns aren’t making the playoffs, and that’s bad; what will be worse is if the DeShaun Watson move is a dud. The Browns need the close the year on a positive note so that it doesn’t become an off-season discussion. Knocking off a team like the Commanders would begin to put that story to an end. Commanders have selected Carson Wentz to face the Browns. I’m taking the Browns and the points.

Browns win.
Browns lead the Series 34-12-1.

Jaguars (7-8-0) at Texans (2-13-1)
Line: Jaguars are favoured by 4.5

Had the Texans beat the Cowboys two weeks ago, I could say that they were red hot right now. Although the outcome of this game is meaningless for the Jaguars, they will still win as they would like to advance to the playoffs with a winning record.

Jaguars win and cover.
Texans lead the Series 28-13-0.

49ers (11-4) at Raiders (6-9)
Line: 49ers are favoured by 10.

Sunday at 4:05 PM FOX

The Raiders have been building leads and then giving them up and losing. Benching Carr is not going to help them win this game. The team is a mess, and more questions will arise after they lose to the Niners. 

49ers win and cover.
Series tied 7-7-0.

Jets (7-8) at Seahawks (7-8)
Line: Seahawks are favoured by 1.5.

Sunday at 4:05 PM FOX

Both the Jets and the Seahawks are still alive in the playoff hunt, with slim chances. The Jets will not have to deal with disappointing draft-bust QB Zach Miller as he will be a healthy scratch. Competent unrated Bob White will start. The Seahawks are getting healthier at running back. I’m taking the points and the Jets. 

Jets win and cover.
Seahawks lead the Series 12-8-0.

Vikings (12-3) at Packers (7-8)
Line: Packers are favoured by 3.5

Sunday at 4:25 PM CBS

Rubber match between these two teams. Although it’s late in the season, the Packers are now winning and won’t disappoint their fans at Lambeau. Vikings kicked a walk-off field goal against the Giants and continued to win close games. It won’t be close.

Packers win and cover.
Packers lead the Series 64-57-3.

Rams (5-10) at Chargers (8-6)
Line: Chargers are favoured by 6.5

Sunday at 4:25 PM CBS

Rams looked like Super Bowl champs last week, hammering the Broncos. Chargers need this game to remain in playoff contention. Rams will be spoilers. I’m taking the points and the Rams.

Rams win.
Rams lead the Series 7-5-0.

Steelers (7-8) at Ravens (10-5) 
Line: Ravens are favoured by 2.5

Sunday at 8:20 NBC

The Steelers are finishing the season strong and have some slim playoff aspirations. The Ravens struggle without Lamar Jackson, and he’ll sit as the Ravens have already clinched a playoff spot.

Steelers win.
Steelers lead the Series 32-25-0.

Bills (12-3) at Bengals (11-4)
Line: Bengals are favoured by 1.

Monday at 8:15 PM ESPN

Bills are happy to be away from all the snow in Buffalo. Two excellent teams that may meet in the playoffs get to test each other. I’m taking the points and the Bills.

Bills win and cover.
Bills lead the Series 17-15-0.

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