Week 13 holds a healthy dose of quality matchups for our late-season viewing pleasure. We get 6 divisional games, and a few non-divisional matchups that will deserve our attention as well. This week there are 5 games featuring two teams with winning records, and 3 of those offer both teams with at least 7 wins.
You could say that the New England Patriots traveling to the Buffalo Bills is a quality AFC East matchup which could possibly hold some consequences for the loser in the meeting. But, the top divisional game cannot be anything other than the midday meeting between the Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints. Direct NFC South implications are involved while the loser could be the top spot in the Wild Card race by the end of the day.
The Kansas City Chiefs hoofing it to the New York Jets is a sneaky dark horse for a great game with the Chiefs stumbling and the Jets constantly battling tooth and nail to the end of each week’s game. The Los Angeles Rams and Arizona Cardinals holds some intrigue and despite losing some of its muster, Sunday Night Football still looks to be a potential great game as the Philadelphia Eagles are being hosted by the Seattle Seahawks.
Another intra-conference game to be certain to catch is the Atlanta Falcons hosting the Minnesota Vikings. Both teams have gotten hot a with a combined 9-1 record in their past 5 games. The Falcons desperately need a win to earn a tie for 2nd in their division while the Vikings are doing everything they can to maintain their 3-game NFC North lead.
As we come to the AFC South and the Indianapolis Colts, the hunger to avenge a Week-7 whoopin against the Jacksonville Jaguars has to be real, doesn’t it? The Jaguars’ defense is the real deal and the Colts offense has hardly proved itself worthy of our admiration thus far. Similarly, the Colts defense has been more than solid for the bulk of the past four weeks. And while the Jaguars offense is hampered by Blake Bortles through the air, they have an impressive ground game that could control the game for them.
The Tennessee Titans and Houston Texans are also facing off Sunday and just for the newly found hope for chaos in the division, should the Colts beat the Jags and the Texans are able to pull one out against the Titans the AFC South gets considerably more interesting with only 4 games left to determine the division’s winner.
This week the following contributors voted on each game: Brett Mock, Matt Danely, Stephen Reed, Chris Shepherd, Chris Blystone, Andrew Aziz, Jared Malott and Jake Arthur. Again, our group voted ‘winners’ which have been bolded, with the vote counts in parenthesis and unanimous predictions were noted by an asterisk (*). Also with an even amount of voters, ties go to the home squad.
Thus far the staff’s numbers are: Faraz Majid – 68/105 (64.8%) | Brett Mock – 107/165 (64.8%) | Chris Blystone – 97/165 (58.8%) | Matt Danely – 97/165 (58.8%) | Andrew Aziz – 103/165 (62.4%) | Jake Arthur – 89/137 (65%) | Jared Malott – 97/152 (63.8%) | Stephen Reed – 88/153 (57.5%) | Chris Shepherd – 89/152 (58.6%) | Josh Hudgens – 87/135 (64.4%)
Sunday @ 1:00 ET
Patriots* @ Bills
49ers (5) @ Bears – Contrarians: Andrew Aziz, Brett Mock, Jared Malott
Vikings @ Falcons (5) – Contrarians: Matt Danely, Chris Shepherd, Jake Arthur
Texans @ Titans (7) – Contrarian: Danely
Chiefs (7) @ Jets – Contrarian: Chris Blystone
Broncos @ Dolphins (4/4) – Contrarians: Stephen Reed, Blystone, Mock, Shepherd
Lions (6) @ Ravens – Contrarian: Blystone, Malott
Bucs @ Packers (6) – Contrarian: Danely, Malott
Colts @ Jaguars (7) – Contrarian: Malott
Sunday @ 4:05 ET
Browns @ Chargers*
Sunday @ 4:25 ET
Giants @ Raiders*
Rams* @ Cardinals
Panthers @ Saints*
Sunday @ 8:30 ET
Eagles (7) @ Seahawks – Contrarian: Shepherd
Monday @ 8:30 ET
Steelers* @ Bengals
Please share your picks with us in the comments!