Week 17 NFL picks against the spread



  • Week 17 NFL picks against the spread


    Week 17 NFL picks against the spread

    Week 17 NFL picks against the spread

    A few more teams' playoff fates, for better or for worse, were decided in the NFL's Week 16 results. But there's still plenty to figure out in the final week of the 2017 regular season — and a ton of pride and jobs on the line for the teams out of contention. It does help that the league works out the schedule to make the games as competitive as possible.

    Here are this week's predictions and prognostications, both against the spread and straight up. Thanks again to Bovada for the Week 17 betting lines.

    MORE: Week 17 NFL picks straight up



  • 1
    Game of the Week: Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons (-3 1/2), Sunday 4:25 p.m., Fox


    Given the Panthers are in the playoffs and the Falcons are on the brink of the playoffs, these two teams have been difficult to trust all season because of the offenses. This will be another close, ugly NFC South affair featuring hated rivals in which one big pass play late makes the difference. This time, Matt Ryan and Julio Jones will connect to avoid a total Super Bowl hangover.

    PICK: Falcons win 20-17 but fail to cover the spread.



  • 2
    Upset of the Week: Miami Dolphins over Buffalo Bills (-3), Sunday 4:25 p.m., CBS


    The Bills on several occasions this season have looked good enough to return to the playoffs for the first time since 1999. Their inconsistency, however, with a limited passing offense and a horrible run defense sets them up to limp to elimination at .500. The Dolphins have been a better home team this season and will run Kenyan Drake often to steal a field-goal fest.

    PICK: Dolphins win 23-20.



  • 3
    Lock of the Week: Baltimore Ravens (-10) over Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, 4:25 p.m., CBS


    The Ravens know regardless of what else happens, a win over the Bengals will get them back into the playoffs, a familiar feeling in the Joe Flacco-John Harbaugh era. They will rebound from the off-but-victorious home game against the Colts and build on their 20-0 win in Cincinnati back in Week 1. Baltimore marches on as a very dangerous wild card because of its defense.

    PICK: Ravens win 27-6 and cover the spread.



  • 4
    Chicago Bears at Minnesota Vikings (-12), Sunday, 1 p.m., Fox


    The Vikings still need to win to wrap up the No. 2 seed, punching their ticket to a home game in the divisional playoffs. They won’t hold back in routing another division foe, as the Bears have a shaky offense that doesn't match up well against the hosts’ defense. This is a hard end-of-rookie-season assignment for Mitchell Trubisky.

    PICK: Vikings win 23-10 and cover the spread.



  • 5
    Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-14), Sunday, 1 p.m., CBS


    The Steelers won’t be sympathetic about helping the Browns get their first win, as the No. 1 AFC seed is still within reach. Pittsburgh won by only a field goal in Cleveland back in Week 1, but the AFC North rivals have gone in completely different directions before this finale. Expect a bunch of Le’Veon Bell, too much for the Browns.

    PICK: Steelers win 24-6 and cover the spread.



  • 6
    Dallas Cowboys (-2 1/2) at Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday, 1 p.m., Fox


    In Week 17 last season, it was the Cowboys resting up as the No. 1 seed in the NFC playoffs. Now it’s the Eagles’ turn, and they won’t care if it means splitting with their East rivals. The Eagles need to worry about rebooting for the divisional playoff after two tough games.

    PICK: Cowboys win 20-17 and cover the spread.



  • 7
    Green Bay Packers at Detroit Lions (-7 1/2), Sunday 1 p.m., Fox


    The Packers shut down Aaron Rodgers and were promptly shut out. Brett Hundley will allow them to score something in Detroit, but the defense will get ripped for a second time by Matthew Stafford. The Lions take out their NFC North elimination frustrations better at home.

    PICK:  Lions win 27-14 and cover the spread.



  • 8
    Houston Texans at Indianapolis Colts (-4), Sunday 1 p.m., CBS


    The Texans’ quarterback mess has looked acceptable at times only because of DeAndre Hopkins. Passing game and pass defense limitations have hurt Houston for much of the season. Indianapolis has shown plenty of fight near the end, and it should hold serve here with Jacoby Brissett and T.Y. Hilton staying hot.

    PICK: Colts win 23-20 but fail to cover the spread.



  • 9
    New York Jets at New England Patriots (-16), Sunday 1 p.m. CBS


    Another week, another massive spread in the Patriots’ favor at home. The Jets were competitive for a while against the Saints and Chargers before totally falling apart with Bryce Petty and a defense with holes everywhere. New England keeps it simple by running often to help put Tom Brady in control from the get-go, earning the AFC's No. 1 seed again in the process.

    PICK: Patriots win 33-13 and cover the spread.



  • 10
    Washington Redskins (-3 1/2) at New York Giants, Sunday 1 p.m., Fox


    This is the last chance for Kirk Cousins and Eli Manning to show what value they might have to their current or new teams next season. Cousins is the better QB at the moment, and Washington is the better, more-inspired NFC East also-ran.

    PICK: Redskins win 20-17 but fail to cover the spread.



  • 11
    Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks (-8), Sunday 4:25 p.m., Fox


    The Seahawks had a disastrous game in Arizona on a Thursday night with the Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor injuries, which turned their season from domination to desperation. They’ll do their part to sneak back into the playoffs, putting pressure on the Falcons to come through, too. Russell Wilson will run around and pick apart the Cardinals’ secondary for his best game in a few weeks.

    PICK: Seahawks win 24-13 and cover the spread.



  • 12
    Jacksonville Jaguars at Tennessee Titans (-6), Sunday 4:25 p.m., CBS


    The Jaguars, locked into the AFC's No. 3 seed, have nothing to play for except trying to avenge a horrible home loss to the Titans. They have a lot of hurting and tired players on both sides of the ball, some they need at full strength for the wild-card round of the playoffs at home. Given Tennessee could be the opponent again next week, Jacksonville has no good reason to show any cards this week.

    PICK: Titans win 23-14 and cover the spread.



  • 13
    Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-3), Sunday 4:25 p.m., CBS


    The Chiefs, locked into the AFC's No. 4 seed, will definitely be resting key players, led by rookie workhorse back Kareem Hunt, to keep them the freshest and healthiest for when it counts at home in their wild-card playoff game. The Broncos will still do their best to lose against second-stringers, but then they’ll remember they're fighting for jobs in 2018.

    PICK: Broncos win 23-17 and cover the spread.



  • 14
    New Orleans Saints (-7 1/2) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday 4:25 p.m., Fox


    The Bucs lost in overtime in Green Bay in Week 13, and things have been unlucky since, with three straight three-point losses, including two back-to-back in the division. No wonder Jameis Winston was so frustrated. That sets up a Saints snowball here. All New Orleans wants for the new year is to stay at home for the wild-card round against the weakest NFC wild card.

    PICK: Saints win 33-20 and cover the spread.



  • 15
    Oakland Raiders at Los Angeles Chargers (-8), Sunday 4:25 p.m., CBS


    The Raiders and Chargers can both think about what could have been in the AFC West. Their respective ends and beginnings to the season cost them in the losing race to the Chiefs, who both started and finished well. The city of LA can still get two NFL playoff teams, and the AFC version will do its part. Philip Rivers will rip Oakland’s defense, while Oakland’s offense will be rattled by Joey Bosa.

    PICK: Chargers win 20-17 but fail to cover the spread.



  • 16
    San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams (-4), Sunday 4:25 p.m., Fox


    Jimmy Garoppolo and Jared Goff don’t just share initials — they are the promising, young quarterbacks who will return the glory to this NFC West rivalry. Keep in mind the first meeting, a shootout between Goff and Brian Hoyer, was close and entertaining. This will be close, too, with the Rams stepping off the gas late thinking about a more important home game in the playoffs next week.

    PICK: Rams win 28-27 but fail to cover the spread.



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