Week 11 of the NFL season features some matchups that are going to be incredibly close, which makes it tough to pick a winner. Fortunately, every game features some insight into how it will turn out.
All football fans should be able to appreciate the quality of football that will be on display on Sunday and Monday. We could legitimately be seeing a preview to the conference championships when the Kansas City Chiefs take on the Denver Broncos, while the New Orleans Saints host the San Francisco 49ers.
It is even possible that the Monday night battle between the Carolina Panthers and New England Patriots could be a sneak peek at the Super Bowl matchup.
Still, those trying to pick every game of the week will have just as much trouble with some of the other games on Sunday. Here are full predictions for Week 11, along with a look at the closest games according to the spreads on Vegas Insider.
|New York Jets||Buffalo Bills||Jets|
|Baltimore Ravens||Chicago Bears||Bears|
|Cleveland Browns||Cincinnati Bengals||Bengals|
|Washington Redskins||Philadelphia Eagles||Eagles|
|Detroit Lions||Pittsburgh Steelers||Lions|
|Atlanta Falcons||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||Buccaneers|
|Arizona Cardinals||Jacksonville Jaguars||Cardinals|
|Oakland Raiders||Houston Texans||Texans|
|San Diego Chargers||Miami Dolphins||Chargers|
|San Francisco 49ers||New Orleans Saints||Saints|
|Green Bay Packers||New York Giants||Giants|
|Minnesota Vikings||Seattle Seahawks||Seahawks|
|Kansas City Chiefs||Denver Broncos||Broncos|
|New England Patriots||Carolina Panthers||Panthers|
Atlanta Falcons (+1) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
This was the toughest game for experts to call, according to NFL Pickwatch. While 51 percent of analysts chose the Buccaneers, there is far from any confidence in this matchup. The teams combine for three wins on the year, and Atlanta has gotten blown out the last two weeks by a combined 47 points.
However, the Buccaneers have a few advantages the Falcons do not have.
First, they have the momentum of actually winning a game, earning their first win of the year against the Miami Dolphins.
Additionally, Tampa Bay has the ability to actually play defense. Although the unit has been inconsistent this year, the run defense remains solid, while the use of Darrelle Revis in man coverage greatly helps the pass defense.
On the other hand, Atlanta has not been able to stop anyone while allowing the fourth-most points per game in football. Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon has been playing well lately, and he should be able to score enough points to win his second game in the NFL.
Prediction: Buccaneers 24, Falcons 20
New York Jets (-1.5) vs. Buffalo Bills
There is certainly concern when it comes to the Jets playing on the road. The team is only 1-3 away from home this season, with the only win coming against the struggling Falcons.
However, the Bills simply do not match up well in this contest.
For Buffalo to be successful, it needs to establish the run with either Fred Jackson, C.J. Spiller or both. EJ Manuel struggled last week after returning to the lineup, and he cannot win the game by himself against a stingy Jets defense.
Unfortunately, he might have to considering the Jets have the No. 1 rush defense in the NFL, allowing only 73.8 yards per game. This will shut down the opposing offense, and Geno Smith will simply have to play relatively mistake-free football in order to help his team.
Although the pressure from the Bills' defensive line might get to the rookie quarterback, the Jets should escape with a low-scoring victory.
Prediction: Jets 17, Bills 9
San Diego Chargers (-1.5) vs. Miami Dolphins
Coming into the game, Ryan Tannehill has been the most-sacked quarterback in football. Unfortunately, things are only going to get worse.
According to ESPN, center Mike Pouncey will miss the upcoming game due to an illness. This leaves the Dolphins with only two of their starters on the offensive line against San Diego.
Miami will not be able to take advantage of the Chargers' weakness in the secondary because Tannehill will be unable to throw down the field.
San Diego will have no such problems, especially with Philip Rivers playing as efficiently as any point in his career. The offense has utilized a great deal of balance with Ryan Mathews and Danny Woodhead taking care of the rushing attack and Rivers completing passes all over the field.
This will help the Chargers earn a quality road win and get back into the playoff race in the AFC.
Prediction: Chargers 27, Dolphins 17
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