NFL Picks: Vikings and Packers are set for a showdownPublished 10:06am Friday, December 28, 2012
Here are the picks:delivery
Tampa Bay at Atlanta
Atlanta really doesn’t have anything to play for, but with a bye week coming up, they’d be wise to leave in their starters for at least a half so they don’t lose momentum like the Packers did last season.
FALCONS 24, BUCS 17
N.Y. Jets at Buffalo
The Mark Sanchez Era must end with him throwing four picks against a helpless Bills team. I think it was written in the stars.
BILLS 13, JETS 6
Baltimore at Cincinnati
Each team is in the playoffs and neither can has much of a chance to move up. This could be the equivalent of a preseason game.
BENGALS 21, RAVENS 17
Chicago at Detroit
The Bears are facing elimination and the Lions are checked out. I really hope Chicago wins so Bears fans have to hope for a Packer win against the Vikings for their team can get into the playoffs.
I can’t imagine a more torturous scenario for Bears’ fans.
BEARS 27, LIONS 20
Jacksonville at Tennessee
The Titans showed absolutely no life in losing 55-7 to Green Bay last week. The Packers weren’t even running anything special, they just called simple plays and watched the Titans mess up.
I’m not sure I’ve seen an NFL defense play much worse in my life.
The Jags gave the Patriots a fight to the finish last week, so I have a little more faith in them.
JAGUARS 20, TITANS 13
Houston at Indianapolis
I don’t know how much either of these teams wants to show, since they could meet in the postseason.
TEXANS 27, COLTS 17
Carolina at New Orleans
The Saints continue the curse of no NFL team in history ever hosting a Super Bowl when it’s in their town. When you think about it, there’s was one of the more suspicious cases.
Three years ago they were champs, and they were in the second round last year. Then the ‘bounty’ scandal came along and without a lot of proof, the NFL was able to gut their coaching staff and try to suspend one of their players for the entire season.
I’d be a little upset if I was a Saints fan.
SAINTS 27, PANTHERS 17
Philadelphia at N.Y. Giants
The Giants are hoping for another miracle.
They’ll do their job, but I don’t think they’ll get the help they need to get in the playoffs.
GIANTS 27, EAGLES 17
Cleveland at Pittsburgh
Each team is done, but the Steelers have to have some pride against a team they usually dominate.
STEELERS 17, BROWNS 13
Kansas City at Denver
The Broncos can and will lock up homefield advantage, which is a big deal. That mile high air will be a huge advantage for them in the postseason.
Green Bay at Minnesota
As a Packer fan, I can’t picture a better scenario. Win and they get the No. 2 seed and knock the Vikings out of the playoffs. Lose and they still make the playoffs and could get the No. 2 seed if the 49ers lose to Arizona.
Obviously beating the Vikings is the better option, but neither of those choices are that bad, especially when you consider the Pack won the Super Bowl as a Wild Card two years ago.
The one thing Minnesota has in its favor is Adrian Peterson and the sheer will he has to break the all-time rushing record. He will be a force.
The Packers, however, have a few things in their favor. They have Aaron Rodgers, who plays better in domes than he does at home, they have an offense that’s getting healthy with Jordy Nelson returning to the lineup and Greg Jennings getting his legs back under him, and they have a defense that is much improved in the secondary and will have a healthy Clay Matthews – something it didn’t have in the teams’ last meeting.
There’s also the Christian Ponder factor and Viking fans can’t say they aren’t afraid of the prospect of him throwing 25 passes against ball hawking Packer secondary.
PACKERS 31, VIKINGS 27
Miami at New England
The Patriots should take care of business.
PATRIOTS 21, DOLPHINS 10
Oakland at San Diego
The Chargers have shown a little life.
CHARGERS 27, RAIDERS 13
Arizona at San Francisco
The 49ers didn’t look good on either side of the ball against the Seahawks. They may also take a weak Arizona team for granted at home.
CARDINALS 20, 49ERS 17
St. Louis at Seattle
The Seahawks are pretty much unbeatable at home at this point.
SEAHAWKS 31, RAMS 13
Dallas at Washington
I never trust Tony Romo in an important game in prime time.
REDSKINS 27, COWBOYS 14
Last week: 10-6; overall: 138-90