As we enter the holiday season, I want to wish everyone a Happy
Thanksgiving and a Happy Hanukkah this weekend. Itís that magical
time of year and thanks to modern medicine, we can all gather
as families this year.
With that in mind, letís enjoy the games from early Thanksgiving
through Monday night.
#3: Indianapolis over Tampa Bay
(9-2: buf, TB, AZ, GB, MN, PIT, LAR, KC, no, DAL, LAC)
The Buccaneers easily dismantled the Giants on Monday night and
helped Tom Brady
avoid a third straight loss Ė something he hasnít done in over
265 games. But last weekís game doesnít guarantee that the GOAT
will win back-to-back games when they visit Lucas Oil Stadium
No one saw the five-touchdown game coming from Jonathan
Taylor as the Colts rolled over the Bills last week. Indianapolis
found a weakness and kept going after it again and again.
This week, it wonít be the JT show. Look for Carson
Wentz to pick apart the decimated Buccaneers secondary. Itís
their Achilles heel, and something that Jason Garrett was unable
to exploit which ultimately led to his firing. Michael
Pittman Jr. and T.Y.
Hilton will stretch the field and open up the run later in
the game. But, it will be the passing game that the Colts use
to win at home.
The Bucs are going to pressure the Colts defense that has allowed
only 18 points or less in four of the last six games. The Redskins,
Saints and even the Patriots (who lost 19-17) found the formula
to beat Tampa. Control the ball and attack their corners on offense,
and blitz on defense. Itís the Colts motto. As such, take the
colts as your UPSET pick this week if you are bold.
#2: Dallas over Las Vegas
(8-3: TB, GB, DEN, no, NE, LAR, bal, cin, MIA, BUF, CLE)
Itís always fun to sit back and enjoy Thanksgiving Day watching
football with the family and arguing about Fantasy Football. Itís
even better when you are still in your Survival Pool and have
avoided the last few weeks of upsets.
This week, if you havenít used them yet, the Cowboys seem to have
the easiest game. Traditionally a strong play for the 4:30pm game
on Thursday, these Cowboys need to pad their record before the
division games in December. This Raiders team seems to have totally
lost focus and is exactly what the Cowboys need for a turkey feast.
Yes, Dak Prescott
Elliott havenít lit the world on fire lately Ė as highlighted
by the losses to Kansas City and Denver two of the last three
weeks. Combine that with Amari
Cooper (Covid) being out and possibly CeeDee
Lamb (concussion) and it probably wonít be the cakewalk that
the lines makers think. Donít bet against the Boys on Turkey Day
however. The only thing missing is John Madden and his multi-legged
#1: Baltimore over Cleveland
(9-2: SF, CLE, CAR, BUF, TB, KC, AZ, LAR, dal, IND, ten)
Sunday will end with a bang when these two division rivals, built
to beat the other, meet in ďPrime TimeĒ. Lamar
Jackson should be back under center along with Marquise
Brown (thigh) back on the field after a last-minute scratch
in week 11. This game has major playoff implications for both
teams and the winner, the inside track for the AFC North Championship.
The Ravens are 4-1 at home. Their only home loss is to division
rival Cincinnati, and they want to avoid a repeat, especially
to Baker Mayfield,
and a Browns defense that is top five in total yards allowed.
But they donít base wins on yards earned or given up, rather points
scored versus points given up. In this important category, the
Ravens have a slights edge (24.7 to 22.2 pts scored) versus what
each team allows (23 pts to 22.8), and the math seems to lean
towards the home team. Combine the fact that the Ravens defense
is 2nd in the NFL in stopping the run, and all signs point to
a Ravens home victory.
This is crunch time in the NFL. Playoffs are made and lost in
the next few weeks, and Survival Pools are won and lost with bold
picks. This week, if you haven’t used Dallas, take this
game that notoriously is a Survival Pool killer (division rivals).
It will set you apart, and help you avoid those “pick em”
games that are your alternatives.