Columnist Josh Satler’s NFL Picks for Week 13

In Week 12, we went 5-2 picking against the spread and hit the money-line bet with the New York Jets (+200) over the Tennessee Titans.

This week, we’re already off to a 2-1 start after hitting on both the Titans and Eagles on Thanksgiving Day. As we look towards this weekend’s action, here’ the teams we likes.

Best Bets

1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-4) vs. New Orleans Saints. Don’t the let the 51 points the Saints just put up on the Packers cloud your decision making when it comes to this pick. New Orleans is notorious for playing extremely well at home and then laying an egg on the road.

The strongest part of the Bucs’ D is its pass defense and the Saints don’t really scare anybody on the ground. Look for at least a seven point victory this Sunday as the Bucs stay atop the NFC South.

Next in Line

2. New York Giants (-3.5) vs. Washington Redskins. This will be an emotional game as the Redskins will remember the life of Sean Taylor one year later, but in the end, look for the Giants to advance to 11-1 and severely put the ‘Skins’ postseason chances in doubt.

Washington is having trouble scoring these days and the Giants defense will keep that trend going, and on the other side of the ball, the G Men have put up 30+ points in four straight weeks. So no problem there.

3. Baltimore Ravens (-7) vs. Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens are fighting for an AFC North crown while the Bengals are playing out the season. And with the recent Chad Ocho Cinco fiasco, it appears that Cincinnati’s focus is everywhere but on the field. Look for Baltimore to run the ball and play stingy defense and bury the Bengals on its way to 8-4.

4. Atlanta Falcons (+4.5) vs. San Diego Chargers. See analysis in money line.

Others we like

1. New York Jets (-7) vs. Denver Broncos. The Broncos suffered what might be the worse loss of the season after getting annihilated by the Oakland Raiders, and still didn’t lose any ground in the porous AFC West. On the other side, the Jets come into this game on a roll, after just demolishing the previously undefeated Tennessee Titans.

Look for that trend to continue with a big victory by the Jets in the Meadowlands on Sunday.

2. Chicago Bears (+3) vs. Minnesota Vikings. Adrian Peterson is a known Bears’ killer, as you’ll find numerous highlight reels of him breaking 50+ yard runs vs. the Monsters of Midway, but that won’t be enough to overcome the horrendous play of QB Gus Frerotte. Look for Chicago to pull off the mini-upset this Sunday night.

3. Buffalo Bills (-6) vs. San Francisco 49ers. The Niners have played admirably for Mike Singletary of late but that won’t be enough to overcome the cross country trip and hostile environment of Orchard Park. This game has a chance to be close until halftime, but in the end, we like the Bills to pull away and win by at least 10.

Money Line

Atlanta Falcons (+180) vs. San Diego Chargers. This game is tricky because it is truly a game of desperation for the San Diego Chargers. But then again, so was last week and they blew it to the Indianapolis Colts. This game also has importance to the Falcons as they are very much in the thick of the AFC South race and trying to keep pace with the Bucs and Panthers. Look for a strong commitment to the running game and Michael Turner when the Falcons have the ball and for its defense to do just enough to keep Tomlinson and Rivers in check. We like QB Ryan and Co. to pull out the close victory on the road by a FG.

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