NFL Week 12 Picks: Road Teams Certain to Dominate

Jesse Reed@@JesseReed78Correspondent INovember 20, 2013

Feb 3, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) roars after his fourth quarter touchdown in Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Jack Gruber-USA TODAY Sports
Jack Gruber-USA TODAY Sports

There are a few lopsided matchups featuring road teams that will easily win in Week 12, which gives you a few gimmes when you're filling out your NFL picks sheet. 

With just six games left on the 2013 schedule for most teams, the gap between good squads and poor ones grows wider with every passing week. 

Here's a look at the entire schedule for Week 12 with predictions for every game, followed by a deeper examination of three contests where the road team will win handily. 

Week 12 NFL Picks
DateRoad TeamHome TeamPick
Nov. 21SaintsFalconsNO
Nov. 24BuccaneersLionsDET
Nov. 24VikingsPackersMIN
Nov. 24JaguarsTexansHOU
Nov. 24ChargersChiefsKC
Nov. 24PanthersDolphinsCAR
Nov. 24SteelersBrownsPIT
Nov. 24BearsRamsCHI
Nov. 24JetsRavensBAL
Nov. 24TitansRaidersTEN
Nov. 24ColtsCardinalsARI
Nov. 24CowboysGiantsNYG
Nov. 24BroncosPatriotsDEN
Nov. 2549ersRedskinsSF
NFL Week 12

New Orleans Saints at Atlanta Falcons

NEW ORLEANS, LA - NOVEMBER 10:  Quarterback Drew Brees #9 of the New Orleans Saints celebrates against the Dallas Cowboys during a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on November 10, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

This game shouldn't be close. 

If things work out on the field like they do on paper, New Orleans should be up by at least a couple of touchdowns before halftime. 

Atlanta gives up the fourth-most points per game in the NFL (29.2) and New Orleans enters this contest with the league's second-highest scoring offense (28.8). 

Nov 17, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith and quarterback Matt Ryan (2) talk during the second half against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Atlanta Falcons 41-28. Mandatory Cre
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

On the flip side, the Falcons are in the bottom half of the league in terms of scoring offense (No. 22, averaging 21.4 per game) while the Saints feature the league's No. 5-ranked scoring defense, allowing just 18.3 points per contest.

The first time these teams met came back in Week 1, before Atlanta's roster was decimated by injuries. The Saints came away victorious, winning 23-17.

Rest assured, this game won't be nearly as close. 

Drew Brees will shred Atlanta's mediocre secondary and the Saints will shut down the depleted offense of the Falcons. 

Projected Score: Saints win 41-21.

Carolina Panthers at Miami Dolphins

Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk reports that Panthers defensive end Charles Johnson is week-to-week with a sprained MCL. He's the heart and soul of Carolina's defensive front and has 8.5 sacks this year to lead his team, but it's highly likely that he'll miss this game. 

Even without him, the Panthers will get to second-year Miami Dolphins quarterback Ryan Tannehill early and often. Miami has allowed more sacks than any team in the league (41) this year and Carolina's defense has been swarming quarterbacks, racking up 31 sacks on the season.

FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 27: Logan Ryan #26 of the New England Patriots sacks Ryan Tannehill #17 of the Miami Dolphins in the second half at Gillette Stadium on October 27, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The Dolphins have been playing well on defense over the past few weeks, but the Panthers have been taking down top opponents recently with precise offense.

Since throwing three interceptions against the Arizona Cardinals in a losing cause back in Week 5, Cam Newton has been on a tear, throwing 10 touchdowns and just three interceptions during the team's six-game winning streak. 

Carolina's balanced offense will give the Dolphins fits and the Panthers will easily win their seventh game in a row. 

Projected Score: Panthers win 27-13.

San Francisco 49ers at Washington Redskins

From an outsider's perspective, Washington's locker room appears to be fracturedor close to it.

In an interview with LaVar Arrington and Chad Dukes of 106.7 The Fan in D.C. (h/t Chris Lingebach of CBS DC), veteran receiver Santana Moss recently took exception to second-year quarterback Robert Griffin III's comments after the team lost to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 11 to move to 3-7 on the season:

As a leader, you understand that if you’re involved in the situation, whether you’re the receiver, the quarterback, the guys making the tackle, whoever.  Regardless of the outcome, good or bad, you have to at some point, stand up and say me or I.

It's easy to see why Washington's players are frustrated. After winning the NFC East with a record of 10-6 last season, this team can't stop anyone and is struggling on offense.

Washington has lost three of four games entering this upcoming contest and it won't get any easier on Monday night when this team hosts the San Francisco 49ers.

The 49ers have lost two agonizingly close games in a row to a couple of the NFL's top teams. San Francisco's defense has played spectacularly wellespecially against the passbut its offense has totaled fewer than 200 yards in each of the past two contests.

Nov 10, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore (21) escapes Carolina Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy (76) on the carry during the second quarter at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Washington's abysmal defense is the cure Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers offense need to get back on track. 

The Redskins allow 31.1 points per game, which is the third-worst mark in the NFL. 

Frank Gore should have a monster game in Washington and Kaepernick will emerge from his recent slump with renewed vigor for the final stretch of games after having a field day against Washington's pitiful secondary. 

Projected Score: 49ers win 35-17.

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