NFL Week 15 Picks: Early Look at Week's Biggest Locks

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 10: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots smiles from the sideline in the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans at Gillette Stadium on December 10, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images
Richard LangfordCorrespondent IDecember 12, 2012

There are some great matchups in Week 15. Finding locks this week is not an easy task. Still, a quick scan of the schedule and three stick out.

I'll give a look into these locks, but let's not over think these. That is always a quick ticket to prognostication doom. 

I like to make my decision early and stick with it. Here are three teams worth sticking with.



Week 15 Opponent: vs. Cardinals 

The Lions have lost five straight, and this team is earning its doctorate in how to blow games. It would be foolish to predict them as a lock in any matchup—unless that matchup is against the Arizona Cardinals. 

The Cardinals are complete joke right now. They put together one of the most pathetic performances the league has ever seen as they were blown out 58-0 against the Seattle Seahawks last week. 

The Cardinals have lost nine straight, and they appear to have given up on the season. 

Arizona will continue to get terrible quarterback play behind a woeful offensive line, and the Lions' passing attack will do more than enough damage to carry the team to a win. 

Prediction: Lions 32, Cardinals 13



Week 15 Opponent: at Colts

The Texans were just given a royal smack down on Monday night by the Patriots. It was their second loss of the season and it was a similar terrible performance as their other loss against the Packers.

Following that loss, the Texans came back strong and demolished the Ravens, 43-13. They will put together another strong, bounce-back performance against the surging Colts.

Indianapolis has put together a nice run, but its defense is still vulnerable. The Colts are 20th in passing defense and 19th in rush defense.

The Texans will get the run game going and Matt Schaub will be able to ease back from his awful showing against the Patriots by working off the play action.

Prediction: Texans 35, Colts 24



Week 15 Opponent: vs. 49ers

This is the week's marquee game, but the Patriots are still a lock.

This is a rough matchup for the Niners. The Patriots have struggled in pass defense, they are 29th in passing yards allowed, but they have been strong against the run.

They are eighth in rushing yards allowed and an even-better seventh in yards allowed per rush. This will force the 49ers to beat New England through the air, and that means youngster Colin Kaepernick is going to have to read and beat Bill Belichick's defense.

The 49ers will not be able to keep pace against Tom Brady and the Patriots' offense. While the 49ers' defense is outstanding against the run and the pass, they can be beat by a strong passing game when the opposing quarterback has time to throw. New England has the fourth-lowest sacked percentage in the league.

Prediction: Patriots 24, 49ers 17 


More Week 15 Picks

*Home team is listed second and predicted winner is denoted in bold

Bengals vs. Eagles

Giants vs. Falcons 

Jaguars vs. Dolphins

Packers vs. Bears

Redskins vs. Browns

Broncos vs. Ravens

Buccaneers vs. Saints

Panthers vs. Chargers

Seahawks vs. Bills

Steelers vs. Cowboys

Chiefs vs. Raiders

Jets vs. Titans

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