The Weekly Blitz: 3 NFL Picks Against the Spread for Week 16

Kevin Hanson@EDSFootballAnalyst IIIDecember 24, 2011

SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 14:  Head coach Mike Singletary of the San Francisco 49ers shouts on the sidelines during their game against the St. Louis Rams at Candlestick Park on November 14, 2010 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

It's great to have a lot of meaningful football on Christmas Eve. And I'm here to deliver to you what former-49ers head coach Mike Singletary would have wanted for Christmas: "Winners."

Picking three games against the spread each week, it's difficult to have a .500 week, which is exactly what I had last week with a win (Saints), a loss (Texans) and a push (Bengals).

On the season, however, I am 29-12-4 (70.7 percent) against the spread (ATS).

Here are my three Week 16 picks:

Denver Broncos (-3) over Buffalo Bills

Going into this week's games, the Broncos control their destiny with a one-game lead in the AFC West even after last week's loss to the Patriots. The Broncos did not match up well with the Patriots, but they do against the Bills.

In their past three games, the Bills have allowed three 100-yard rushers including Miami' Reggie Bush, who rushed for a career-high 203 yards last week, according to The Daily Blitz. During that three-game span, the Bills have allowed running backs to rush 95 times for a total of 575 yards (6.05 yards per carry), and four touchdowns.

Only the Bucs (20) and Colts (19) have allowed more rushing touchdowns this season than the Bills (16).

With a healthy Willis McGahee, Lance Ball and Tim Tebow—not a "running back" despite what Brian Urlacher calls him—the Broncos should be able to run all over the Bills today.

Philadelphia Eagles (+1) over Dallas Cowboys

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has said he's "scared," according to Fox Sports Southwest.

Should he be?

With all of the preseason hype—some of it self-created with nicknames like the "Dream Team"—the Eagles have not lived up to expectations. But at 6-8, they are still alive in the NFC East playoff picture and they beat the Cowboys convincingly in their first matchup this season.

The Eagles have historically been a pass-first team and they have plenty of weapons to help them strike quick. But they are running the ball effectively behind LeSean McCoy, who ranks second in the NFL in rushing and has a total of 20 touchdowns in the first 14 games.

While the Eagles will be without Asante Samuel—a positive for the Cowboys in the passing game—the status of Cowboys running back Felix Jones (hamstring) is very questionable, which means they may or will have to rely on Sammy Morris.

Take the point as the Eagles continue to roll.

Miami Dolphins (+9.5) over the New England Patriots

Like last week, I thought about going with the Chargers this week. The status of receiver Vincent Jackson, according to Sign On San Diego, caused me to reconsider, although I would take the Chargers and the points if I had to pick that game.

Instead I'm taking the Dolphins. As noted earlier, the Dolphins got a 200-yard performance from Reggie Bush last week, but Bush has three straight 100-yard games. It may be more difficult for him to rush for 100-plus yards this week, but the Patriots secondary is vulnerable.

No team has allowed more passing yards than the Patriots this year, and Chad Henne threw for 416 yards in their first matchup. (Of course, Tom Brady threw for more than 500 yards in that game.) I like Miami's balance on offense, and they are playing well (5-2 in their past seven games.)

While I don't expect Miami to win this game, I expect them to keep it close.

For all of our Week 16 picks including our other two handicappers, click here. If you're looking for our fantasy football rankings for Week 16, you'll find them here.

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