NFL cheat sheet: Here’s who to watch and why in Week 14
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RAMS at BEARS
Time: 7:20 p.m., Ch. 5.
Line: Rams by 3. Total: 51½.
Records (overall/ATS): Rams 11-1/5-6; Bears 8-4/8-4.
Outlook: Bears figure to bounce back. Rams are traveling to the Midwest a second straight week and are outdoors. If not for the uncertainty about Trubisky’s rust, Bears would be a good pick here.
Pick: Rams 24, Bears 23.
GIANTS at REDSKINS
Line: Giants by 3½. Total: 41.
Records (overall/ATS): Giants 4-8/6-5-1; Redskins 6-6/7-5.
Outlook: Former Bears back-up Mark Sanchez should be better with a full week’s practice, but that didn’t work out so well for Chase Daniel and the Bears last week.
Pick: Giants 27, Redskins 22.
RAVENS AT CHIEFS
Line: Chiefs by 6½. Total: 53.
Records (overall/ATS): Ravens 7-5/6-6; Chiefs 10-2/8-3-1.
Outlook: Ravens rookie QB Lamar Jackson is 3-0 in his first three NFL starts. When Chad Hutchinson won his first three NFL starts with the Bears in 2004, he lost his fourth start 41-10.
Pick: Chiefs 37, Ravens 23.
PANTHERS AT BROWNS
Line: Panthers by 2. Total: 47.
Records (overall/ATS): Panthers 6-6/6-6; Browns 4-7-1/7-5.
Outlook: Panthers coach Ron Rivera feeling a little heat after four consecutive losses. He fired two position coaches and will take over play-calling duties.
Pick: Panthers 31, Browns 23.
COLTS at TEXANS
Line: Texans by 4½. Total: 49½.
Records (overall/ATS): Colts 6-6/5-6-1; Texans 9-3/6-6.
Outlook: Colts once impregnable QB protection a little vulnerable since losing C Ryan Kelly. Andrew Luck has been sacked four times in two games after not getting sacked in five straight games. J.J. Watt has 11½ sacks this season.
Pick: Texans 27, Colts 24.
PATRIOTS at DOLPHINS
Line: Patriots by 7½. Total: 47.
Records (overall/ATS): Patriots 9-3/8-4; Dolphins 6-6/7-5.
Outlook: Patriots QB Tom Brady is 7-9 SU/6-10 ATS at Miami in his otherwise stellar career.
Pick: Patriots 24, Dolphins 20.
JETS at BILLS
Line: Bills by 3½. Total: 38½.
2017 records (overall/ATS): Jets 3-9/4-8; Bills 4-8/5-7.
Outlook: Jets are determined to avenge a 41-10 loss to Matt Barkley and the Jets in Week 10.
Pick: Bills 41, Jets 10.
BENGALS at CHARGERS
Time: 3:05 p.m.
Line: Chargers by 14. Total: 47½.
Records (overall/ATS): Bengals 5-7/5-7; Chargers 9-3/7-5.
Outlook: Chargers and Philip Rivers might have to be taken seriously after impressive comeback vs. the Steelers.
Pick: Chargers 34, Bengals 27.
STEELERS at RAIDERS
Time: 3:25 p.m.
Line: Steelers by 10½. Total: 51½.
Records (overall/ATS): Steelers 7-4/6-5; Raiders 2-10/4-8.
Outlook: Steelers figure to bounce back after blowing a 23-7 lead in a loss to the Chargers at home, but won’t have RB James Conner.
Pick: Steelers 27, Raiders 20.
LIONS at CARDINALS
Time: 4:25 p.m.
Line: Lions by 3. Total: 40½.
Records (overall/ATS): Lions 4-8/6-6; Cardinals 3-9/6-5-1.
Outlook: Cardinals have to avoid a letdown after beating the Packers at Lambeau last week.
Pick: Lions 20, Cardinals 13.
VIKINGS at SEAHAWKS
Time: 7:15 p.m., Mon., ESPN.
Line: Seahawks by 3. Total: 45.
Records (overall/ATS): Vikings 6-5-1/6-5-1; Seahawks 7-5/7-3-2.
Outlook: Another long road trip for the Vikings against the wrong team at the wrong time.
Pick: Seahawks 24, Vikings 20.
FALCONS at PACKERS
Line: Packers by 5. Total: 50½.
Records (Overall/ATS): Falcons 4-8/3-9; Packers 4-7-1/4-7-1.
Outlook: It’s been a tough last five weeks for championship-winning coaches.
The Cleveland Cavaliers fired Tyronn Lue, who assisted LeBron James on the Cavs’ 2015-16 NBA championship team, on Oct. 29 after an 0-6 start this season.
The Blackhawks fired Joel Quenneville, winner of three Stanley Cups, on Nov. 6 after a 6-6-3 start.
And the Packers pulled a surprise by unceremoniously firing Mike McCarthy, who coached the Packers to a Super Bowl title after the 2010 season, following a 20-17 loss to Arizona on Sunday dropped the Packers to 4-7-1.
The firing of Lue and Quenneville have had one commonality: it hasn’t changed anything. The LeBron-less Cavs are 5-13 under Larry Drew. The Hawks are actually worse under Jeremy Colliton (3-9-2 heading into Thursday night’s game at Vegas).
Will the Packers fare any better? Aaron Rodgers always gives them a chance. But at 35, he might be on the decline as well. Despite 21 touchdown passes to one interception, Rodgers’ 99.7 passer rating is 11th in the NFL.
Then again, critics think McCarthy was holding Rodgers back — and a Sean McVay/Matt Nagy progressive type might rejuvenate him. For now, interim coach Joe Philbin will have to do. But after the Mike McCarthy era ran its course, even in the short-term, change might be good for Rodgers and the Packers.
Pick: Packers 31, Falcons 17.
SAINTS at BUCCANEERS
Line: Saints by 8. Total: 55.
Records (overall/ATS): Saints 10-2/9-3; Buccaneers 5-7/5-6-1.
Outlook: After averaging 37.2 points this season, the Saints’ offense was shut down in a 13-10 road loss to the Cowboys. On extra rest after playing Thursday night, against the 31st-ranked scoring defense in the league (29.6 ppg), Drew Brees & Co. are very likely to bounce back in a big way. Bucs have won two straight.
Pick: Saints 42, Buccaneers 21.
BRONCOS at 49ERS
Time: 3:05 p.m.
Line: Broncos by 4. Total: 45½.
Records (overall/ATS): Broncos 6-6/6-5-1; 49ers 2-10/3-9.
Outlook: Anticipated match-up of two productive undrafted free agent RBs this season — the Broncos’ Phillip Lindsay and the 49ers’ Matt Breida — will not materialize after Breida suffered an ankle injury last week. Broncos have playoff hopes after winning three straight. Case Keenum has not been spectacular but is keeping the Broncos in games by avoiding disaster.
Pick: Broncos 24, 49ers 14.
EAGLES at COWBOYS
Time: 3:25 p.m.
Line: Cowboys by 3½. Total: 43.
Records (overall/ATS): Eagles 6-6/4-8; Cowboys 7-5/7-5.
Outlook: Cowboys have won four straight to take the lead in the NFC East and are coming off an impressive victory over the Saints. But the Eagles – in a post SB funk — still have some life in them and almost always play well at Cowboys Stadium. This is their chance to save their season, and maybe their last one.
Pick: Eagles 23, Cowboys 20.