Week 15 in the NFL marks a shift into playoff intensity for many teams as the postseason draws ever closer.
The teams at the top are desperate to earn a first-round bye, while many are still fighting to get in. This is the best time of year for football fans, as there are plenty of meaningful games on the schedule.
Follow along as we take a look at what some of the leading experts have to say about this weekend's slate of games, and I'll throw my two cents into the mix, as well.
This one is easy.
The Cincinnati Bengals are still in the hunt for the No. 6 seed in the AFC, and they won't fall flat. Geno Atkins and the team's outside pass-rushers should have a field day against rookie quarterback Nick Foles, and the Philadelphia Eagles secondary will get torched by A.J. Green and company.
This game should be one of the more entertaining ones to watch this weekend.
The New York Giants are fighting for their playoff lives right now with the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins breathing down their neck. I expect them to beat the Atlanta Falcons by four points in a shootout.
Adrian Peterson has been on a major roll lately, breaking off seven 100-plus-yard games in a row. He won't be slowed down this week, but I expect the St. Louis Rams to force a couple of costly turnovers that will be the difference in the game.
Unanimous agreement by the experts here, and for good reason.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have shrunk back down to their pathetic normal after a couple of weeks where they almost looked like an NFL team.
The Dolphins, on the other hand, have been playing tough all year long.
The Chicago Bears have lost four of five games this past month, and the team's defense hasn't been performing up to the high standard we saw for the first half of the season.
Robert Griffin III has practiced the past couple of days, and I fully expect him to play. He may not be as mobile as we're used to seeing, but Alfred Morris is still just as dangerous as ever. The Cleveland Browns have won three games in a row, but the buck stops here.
Joe Flacco or Peyton Manning?
Yeah, I'm going with Manning this week.
Sure, the Houston Texans secondary is ripe for exploitation, but the Texans as a team are just better than the Indianapolis Colts. And after the New England Patriots annihilated the Texans last week in Boston, some home cooking against a lesser team is just what the doctor ordered for the AFC's No. 1 seed.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers don't rush the passer well, don't cover well and give up a ton of yards through the air.
The New Orleans Saints couldn't stop the run if their season depended on it.
Both teams have some glaring weaknesses, but I'm taking Drew Brees in this one to go bonkers against one of the NFL's worst secondaries.
You've seen the Arizona Cardinals play recently, right?
The Seattle Seahawks beat them last week by a score of 58-0, and though the Detroit Lions aren't as good as the Seahawks, you can expect another beat-down to occur in Week 15.
The San Diego Chargers should win this game, which is why I'm picking against them.
The Norv Turner era has been full of games like this one that the Chargers should have won, but his soft approach to coaching has doomed this team.
I expect Cam Newton to have another big game after torching the Atlanta Falcons a week ago, and the Panthers will win on the road for the third time in 2012.
The Seattle Seahawks simply have a better team.
Marshawn Lynch has been the second-most impressive running back in the NFC this season behind Adrian Peterson, and he'll have another big game against the porous run defense of the Buffalo Bills.
Furthermore, the Seahawks defense should lock down any semblance of a Bills passing game, and C.J. Spiller won't be able to carry the team all by himself.
Chris Mortensen is the only expert picking the Dallas Cowboys, and I have to go with the rest of them on this pick.
I don't expect the Pittsburgh Steelers defense to let another offense dictate the tempo after getting torched by the San Diego Chargers last week, and Ben Roethlisberger will have a big game to keep the Steelers' playoff hopes alive.
The Kansas City Chiefs are just terrible, but then again, so are the Oakland Raiders. Both teams give up a ton of points, and both teams give the ball away.
Flip a coin, folks. That's about how predictable this game will be. The only thing that has me picking the Raiders is that they're the home team.
The New England Patriots have been vulnerable against teams that equip two-tight-end sets, and the San Francisco 49ers have two excellent tight ends in Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker.
Furthermore, the 49ers feature the hottest pass-rusher in the NFL in Aldon Smith, and the team's defense is the most complete unit in the league.
I'm picking the 49ers to upset the Patriots on the road, and I predict Colin Kaepernick will surprise many folks around the country who haven't really seen how well he throws the ball.
Two things will finally die this weekend:
2. The New York Jets' playoff hopes.
Chris Johnson will rip a hole right through the Swiss-cheese defense of the Jets, and the Tennessee Titans will humiliate the Jets on national television.