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NFL Week 17 Point Spread Picks

Credit: NFL.com

Welcome to my NFL week 17 point spread picks column. It was another tough week for me as I went 7-9 again in my column last week. I am now 132-108 on the year and currently ranked 183 out of 8588 for the season. I am ranked 2 out of 3036 over the past 7 seasons. You can view those rankings here. The picks have definitely been a bit more challenging the past few weeks with the rising number of Covid-19 cases affecting NFL locker rooms. I am looking forward to the challenge of picking the games this week.  Let’s take a look at my picks for this week!

Sunday, January 2nd

Atlanta Falcons (7-8) @ Buffalo Bills (9-6) Line: Bills by 14 1/2

The Bills are 9-6 against the spread this season, while Atlanta is 6-9 on the year against the spread. Buffalo has won two games in a row to take the lead in the AFC East with two games to play. With cold temperatures and wintry conditions expected in Buffalo at game time I am going to go with the Bills. Pick: Bills

New York Giants (4-11) @ Chicago Bears (5-10) Line: Bears by 5 1/2

The Bears had a late 4th quarter comeback to win 25-24 at Seattle in week 16, meanwhile the Giants lost to the Eagles 34-10 last week. QB Jake Fromm looked awful for the Giants in his first significant NFL action. The head coaches of both teams appear to be fighting to stay employed in this one. I am going with the favored Bears to cover in this one. Pick: Bears

Kansas City Chiefs (11-4) @ Cincinnati Bengals (9-6) Line: Chiefs by 4 1/2

The Chiefs have now won 8 games in a row. Last season the Chiefs were one of the worst teams against the spread, however, that isn’t the case this year as they are now at 8-7. The Chiefs have been on a roll and I expect that to continue this week in a shootout. Pick: Chiefs

Miami Dolphins (8-7) @ Tennessee Titans (10-5) Line: Titans by 3 1/2

The Dolphins won their seventh in a row in week 16 by handing the Saints a 20-3 defeat. Tua Tagavailoa has continued to look impressive during this streak and now leads all quarterbacks in completion percentage. The Titans win last week has put them in the lead in the AFC South and to the #2 seed if the playoffs were to begin today. I expect the Dolphins to lose a close game but to still cover the spread. Pick: Dolphins

Las Vegas Raiders (8-7) @ Indianapolis Colts (9-6) Line: Colts by 6 1/2

The Colts have won three straight games while the Raiders have won two in a row. Indianapolis is tied for the third best record in the league against the spread at 10-5, meanwhile the Raiders are at 6-9 on the season. The Colts recent victories have been against above .500 opponents (Cardinals, Patriots) and the Raiders have been against sub .500 teams (Browns, Broncos). Pick: Colts

Jacksonville Jaguars (2-13) @ New England Patriots (9-6) Line: Patriots by 15 1/2

The Jaguars are well on their way to securing the first overall pick in this year’s draft once again. They have looked inept on both sides of the ball this season but especially so on offense. Jacksonville needs to find a way to get more out of first overall pick QB Trevor Lawrence if they expect to compete in the future. Jacksonville is the worst team in the league against the spread at 4-11 but I still think that the 15 1/2 points is a lot for an NFL game. Pick: Jaguars

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11-4) @ New York Jets (4-11) Line: Buccaneers by 13 1/2

The Buccaneers were 32-6 winners over the Panthers last week and the Jets defeated the Jaguars 26-21. The Buccaneers have now clinched the NFC South, while the Jets are playing for pride at this point in their season. This is another point spread that feels a little too large. Pick: Jets

Philadelphia Eagles (8-7) @ Washington Football Team (6-9) Line: Eagles by 3 1/2

This one is a tale of two teams headed in opposite directions. The Eagles have won three games in a row to once again put itself in playoff contention, however, the Football Team have lost three in a row, including a 56-14 drubbing at the hands of the Cowboys. With the recent fortunes of these two times I am surprised that this point spread isn’t higher. Pick: Eagles

Los Angeles Rams (11-4) @ Baltimore Ravens (8-7) Line: Rams by 3 1/2

Here is another game with two teams that have had differing recent fates. The Rams have won four games in a row to secure a playoff berth, meanwhile, the Ravens have lost four consecutive contests. Lamar Jackson has not practiced this week and is officially questionable for Sunday. Even if he does play I don’t think that will be as effective as he normally would be. Pick: Rams

Denver Broncos (7-8) @ Los Angeles Chargers (8-7) Line: Chargers by 5 1/2

Both teams have lost two in a row as they vie for a playoff spot but are on the outside looking in currently. This will be a battle of the Chargers fourth ranked offense versus the Broncos sixth ranked defense. Drew Lock is expected to start at QB in place of Teddy Bridgewater for the Broncos this week. I don’t believe that Denver will be able to keep up with the Los Angeles offense. Pick: Chargers

Houston Texans (4-11) @ San Francisco 49ers (8-7) Line: 49ers by 12 1/2

Houston looked great in their 41-29 defeat of the Chargers last week. In his past three games Texans rookie QB has quietly amassed 794 yards passing with a five touchdown passes against only one interception. I don’t believe that Houston will win this game but they will keep it close enough to scare the 49ers. Pick: Texans

Arizona Cardinals (10-5) @ Dallas Cowboys (11-4) Line: Cowboys by 5 1/2

Arizona clinched a playoff spot last week despite losing their third game in a row. The Cowboys have looked like they will be a serious contender in the NFC playoffs as they won their fourth contest in a row and clinched the NFC East in the process. Dallas is also the best team in the league against the spread this year at 12-3. Pick: Cowboys

Carolina Panthers (5-10) @ New Orleans Saints (7-8) Line: Saints by 7 1/2

The Panthers have benched QB Cam Newton and will be going back to Sam Darnold this week. The Saints quarterback situation appears to be up in the air as well as head coach Sean Payton has refused to name a starter. It appears that he will have his choice of Taysom Hill, Trevor Siemian and Ian Book at his disposal this week. The Panthers have lost five in a row. I expect them to lose this one as well but to keep it within a touchdown. Pick: Panthers

Detroit Lions (2-12-1) @ Seattle Seahawks (5-10) Line: Seahawks by 6 1/2

Despite their lowly record, the Lions are one of the best teams in the league at covering the spread at 10-5. Seattle continued their lost season last week with a 25-24 loss to the Bears. I predict that the Lions will do what they have done so well this season and lose another close contest while covering the spread. Pick: Lions

Minnesota Vikings (7-8) @ Green Bay Packers (12-3) Line: Packers by 6 1/2

I really thought that the line for this game would go up even more with Minnesota QB Kirk Cousins testing positive for Covid-19. This has the feel of a game that could get out of hand as the Packers look to avenge their 34-31 loss to Minnesota on November 21st. It will be a tall task for Minnesota QB Sean Mannion to keep this game close as he has not appeared in an NFL game since 2019. Pick: Packers (Pick of the Week)

Monday, January 3rd

Cleveland Browns (7-8) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7-1) Line: Browns by 2 1/2

Could this be the last home game for Steelers great QB Ben Roethlisberger? In all probability it will be unless Big Ben leads Pittsburgh on a deep playoff run which seems highly unlikely at this point. I do believe that there will be a bit of sentimentality attached to this matchup for all of the Steelers involved and that is why I am going with the Steelers. Pick: Steelers

Written by Jeremy Thomas

Sports and fantasy sports fan, WWE and alternative rock music are some of my interests. Check out my weekly NFL point spread picks.

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