NFL Regular Season, Week 16 Picks
Several big time upsets happened last week with the Chargers beating the Broncos, the Rams beating the Saints, and the Dolphins showing true skill as they defeated the Patriots. The Seahawks continue to impress me, with their great offensive plays, as well as that defense that managed to shut down Eli Manning and the Giants offense. They are truly a different team than previous seasons. This week there will be challenges for more than one team, as the Broncos and Chiefs, as well as the Saints and Panthers fight for the number one spot in their division. With just two weeks left, there is still time for one or two teams to make it into the Wild Card spots, but it will be pretty tough with several teams in the running for it.
Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills
I’m a fan of the Dolphins and the way they have been playing these past few weeks have made me a happy fan, but this week they will be playing against the Bills, who have a team that could knock the Dolphins down a peg. The Dolphins have a good offense, but the Bills defense will have the advantage when facing QB Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins receivers. The one saving point the Dolphins would have is the ability to also run the ball, but they are not as effective at scoring using the run plays. With the Bills strong rush offense, they will be able to run the ball, maintain possession, and have many more opportunities to score.
We pick: Buffalo Bills (+3) to win
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers
These two teams just recently met a few weeks ago, where the Saints managed to take the win 31 to 13 against the Panthers. However, since then the Panthers have continued to improve their offense and defense, while the Saints seem to be lacking the will to win. Here is when the Panther’s running backs will have their time to shine against the weaker inside defense of the Saints. That, coupled with the fact that the Panther defense has been able to stop quite effectively their opponents offense, on both passing and running. With the Saints having to focus more on passing, and especially passing to one player, the Panthers will be able to use that against the Saints.
We pick: Carolina Panthers (-3) to win
Indianapolis Colts at Kansas City Chiefs
The first team to beat the Chiefs this season was the Colts while playing at home, now the Colts are going to try and beat them again while on the road. The Chiefs have been able to keep a good winning record, only losing 3 times so far this season, but I believe this next match will spell disaster for their team. The Colts, although look like a pretty average team on paper and in their stats, they certainly have been proving themselves to be playoff material. Both teams do an excellent job of keeping possession, with the Chiefs always having more time with the ball. The great aspect of this game is that both teams have such a wide variety of receivers and running backs that there are so many options for the QB to pick from. However, when it comes down to it, the Chiefs have won due to their overpowering offense, which won’t give the Colts too much trouble. The Colts will win out with their greater variety of players.
We pick: Indianapolis Colts (+7) to win
New England Patriots at Baltimore Ravens
The one thing the Ravens have on their side is their awesome defense. And time and time again, the Ravens defense has been able to stop powerful offensive teams like the Patriots. They may not get very high scores during their games, but neither do their opponents. This will be crucial when playing the Patriots for a second time this season. Their defense will need to stop Tom Brady and the rest of the offense, while their own offense has to perform much better. This is possible, with the Ravens Ray Rice and Torrey Smith.
We pick: Baltimore Ravens (-2½) to win
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at St. Louis Rams
In a surprising turnout, the Rams beat the Saints last week, with the Buccaneers falling short yet again. Both teams have not been performing as well throughout the season, but lately the Rams have been stepping up their game. The Buccaneers do have a slightly better defense than the Rams, but despite that fact, the Rams will still be able to score while stopping the Buccaneers. The bad thing is that the Buccaneers seem to depend to greatly on Vincent Jackson, making him a good target for the Rams defense to cover, while the rest of their defense covers the run. It will be a difficult match, but the Rams will come out on top, as they have done in several occasions where they were against stronger teams.
We pick: St. Louis Rams (-6) to win