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BEST BETS

ATLANTA -13½ vs. Tampa Bay
Baltimore -2½ vs. CINCINNATI
N.Y. GIANTS -3 vs. Dallas
Buffalo vs. NEW ENGLAND (51) UNDER
Last week: 2-2 / Season: 37-24-3

PFW STAFF SELECTIONS

"PFW" refers to the staff consensus pick. HOME TEAM IN CAPS. Asterisk (*) denotes team will cover pointspread but lose game. (#) selections indicate best bets.

Early Las Vegas line Hub  Keith Mike H Dan A Eric Mike W Dan P Kevin Eli PFW
Sunday
PHILADELPHIA -8½ vs. Washington (46)
Phil. Phil.
(#)
Wash.*
(#)
Phil. Phil. Wash.*
(#)
Phil. Phil.
(#)
Phil.
(#)
Phil.
ATLANTA -13½ vs. Tampa Bay (46) Atl.
(#)
Atl. Atl.
(#)
Atl. Atl. Atl. Atl.
(#)
Atl. Atl. Atl.
(#)
San Francisco -10½ vs. ST. LOUIS (34) S.F. S.F. St.L.* St.L.* St.L.* St.L.* S.F.
(#)
S.F. S.F.
(#)
S.F.
MINNESOTA E vs. Chicago Minn. Minn. Chi. Chi. Minn. Minn. Chi. Chi. Chi. Chi.
Detroit -1 vs. GREEN BAY G.B. Det. Det. Det.
(#)
Det. Det. G.B. Det. Det. Det.
NEW ORLEANS -7½ vs. Carolina (52½) N.O. N.O. N.O. Car.* Car. N.O. Car.* N.O. Car.* N.O.
Tennessee -3 vs. HOUSTON (40) Hou.* Tenn. Hou. Tenn. Tenn. Hou. Hou. Tenn.
(#)
Hou. Hou.*
Baltimore -2½ vs. CINCINNATI (38) Balt.
(#)
Balt. Balt.
(#)
Cin. Cin. Cin. Balt. Balt. Balt.
(#)
Balt.
(#)
Pittsburgh -7 vs. CLEVELAND Pitt. Pitt.
(#)
Pitt. Cle.*
(#)
Cle.* Cle.* Pitt. Cle.* Pitt. Pitt.
JACKSONVILLE -4 vs. Indianapolis (36½) Jax. Jax. Ind.* Ind.* Ind.
(#)
Ind. Ind.* Ind.* Ind. Ind.*
MIAMI -1 vs. N.Y. Jets (41½) Mia. Mia. Mia. Mia. Mia. Mia.
(#)
NYJ NYJ NYJ Mia.
NEW ENGLAND -12 vs. Buffalo (51) N.E. N.E. Buff.* Buff.* N.E.
(#)
Buff.* N.E. N.E. N.E. N.E.
OAKLAND -3 vs. San Diego (49) Oak. S.D. Oak. Oak. Oak. Oak.
(#)
S.D. Oak. Oak. Oak.
DENVER -3 vs. Kansas City (36½) K.C. Den. K.C. K.C.
(#)
Den. K.C. Den. K.C. K.C. K.C.
ARIZONA -3 vs. Seattle (41) Ariz. Ariz. Ariz. Ariz. Ariz. Sea. Ariz. Sea.* Sea. Ariz.
N.Y. GIANTS -3 vs. Dallas (46) NYG
(#)
NYG
(#)
NYG NYG NYG
(#)
Dal. NYG
(#)
NYG
(#)
NYG NYG
(#)
Early Las Vegas line Hub  Keith Mike H Dan A Eric Mike W Dan P Kevin Eli PFW
Last week vs. spread 8-9 5-12 7-10 12-5 11-6 10-7 7-10 8-9 9-8 7-10
Season to date vs. spread 115-117-8 117-115-8 113-119-8 129-103-8 110-122-8 122-110-8 119-113-8 120-112-8 124-108-8 115-117-8
Last week best bets 1-2 3-0 1-2 3-0 1-2 2-1 2-1 2-1 0-4 2-2
Season to date best bets 28-16-4 28-18-2 23-23-2 31-16-1 22-23-3 21-22-5 25-20-3 26-20-2 20-28 37-24-3
Last week straight-up 12-5 9-8 10-7 10-7 10-7 13-4 10-7 11-6 10-7 9-8
Season to date straight-up 157-83 162-78 161-79 160-80 155-85 161-79 160-80 160-80 165-75 153-87

 

LOCK OF THE WEEK

Which of your picks do you feel strongest about and why?

Hub Arkush: I hate giving 13½ points in my lock, but it is clear the Bucs went home weeks ago, and whomever the Falcons rest, they are still getting ready for a playoff game.

Keith Schleiden: It may be a meaningless game, but the Eagles are riding a three-game win streak right now and want to roll into the offseason on a high note. The "Dream Team" covers easily.

Mike Holbrook: I've got to go against the Buccaneers once again. Not only can't they stop anyone, they will be facing an Atlanta team that is revving up its offense for the postseason.

Dan Arkush: It looks like the Lions might have the same mojo as the Pack had at this time last year. I don't see Green Bay going all out in this game. Healthy bodies are more of a concern.

Eric Edholm: Colts fans have had enough winning, but Jim Caldwell has not. The feckless Jaguars will not put up a fight as the Colts win ... and blow the No. 1 pick in the process.

Mike Wilkening: I have to wonder how much the Jets have left to offer. The Dolphins played them quite tough early in the first meeting between these teams and can turn the tables here.

Dan Parr: With the woeful Bucs showing few signs of life, the Falcons will avenge their Week Three loss to Tampa Bay. Expect another blowout loss for the Bucs.

Kevin Fishbain: The Texans are locked into their playoff spot while the Titans are playing for their postseason lives. The Titans' intangibles will lead them past Houston.

Eli Kaberon: The Eagles are flying high on a recent winning streak and they'll want to finish that way. Rex Grossman has a history of not preparing for games the week of New Year's.


OPPONENTS VS. SPREAD

CODE: H - home, A - away, N - neutral, followed by team's score; number in parentheses is number of points by which that team was favored to win; E - game was rated as even; W - beat the pointspread; * - team beat the pointspread in both regular-season meetings that year; T - neither beat the pointspread; P - playoff game; OT - overtime; # - at Toronto

Tampa Bay at Atlanta

2010: at Tampa Bay: Falcons (-3) 28W, Buccaneers 24

2010: at Atlanta: Falcons (-10) 27, Buccaneers 21W

2009: at Tampa Bay: Falcons (-3) 20W, Buccaneers 10

2009: at Atlanta: Falcons (-12) 20, Buccaneers 17W

Buffalo at New England

2010: at Buffalo: Patriots (-7.5) 34W, Bills 3

2010: at New England: Patriots (-14.5) 38, Bills 30W

2009: at Buffalo: Patriots (-6.5) 17W, Bills 10

2009: at New England: Patriots (-13) 25, Bills 24W

Seattle at Arizona

2010: at Arizona: Seahawks 36W*, Cardinals 18 (-4)

2010: at Seattle: Seahawks (-7) 22W, Cardinals 10

2009: at Arizona: Cardinals (-8.5) 31W*, Seahawks 20

2009: at Seattle: Cardinals 27W, Seahawks (-3) 3

Carolina at New Orleans

2010: at Carolina: Saints (-6.5) 34W, Panthers 3

2010: at New Orleans: Saints (-12.5) 16, Panthers 14W

2009: at Carolina: Panthers (-10) 23W*, Saints 10

2009: at New Orleans: Saints (-11.5) 30, Panthers 20W

Washington at Philadelphia

2010: at Washington: Eagles (-3) 59W, Redskins 28

2010: at Philadelphia: Redskins 17W, Eagles (-5) 12

2009: at Philadelphia: Eagles (-10) 27, Redskins 24W

2009: at Washington: Eagles (-8.5) 27W, Redskins 17

Chicago at Minnesota

2010: at Minnesota (at University of Minnesota): Bears (-7) 40W*, Vikings 14

2010: at Chicago: Bears 27W, Vikings (-1) 13

2009: at Chicago: Bears 36W, Vikings (-8.5) 30

2009: at Minnesota: Vikings (-11) 36W, Bears 10

N.Y. Jets at Miami

2010: at N.Y. Jets: Dolphins 10W, Jets (-5.5) 6

2010: at Miami: Jets 31W, Dolphins (-2.5) 23

2009: at N.Y. Jets: Dolphins 30W*, Jets (-3.5) 25

2009: at Miami: Dolphins 31W, Jets (-3) 27

Tennessee at Houston

2010: at Tennessee: Titans (-1.5) 31W, Texans 17
2010: at Houston: Texans (-5) 20W, Titans 0

2009: at Houston: Titans 20W, Texans (-4) 17

2009: at Tennessee: Texans 34W, Titans (-7) 31

Indianapolis at Jacksonville

2010: at Indianapolis: Colts (-4.5) 34W, Jaguars 24

2010: at Jacksonville: Jaguars 31W, Colts (-7) 28

2009: at Jacksonville: Colts (-3) 35W, Jaguars 31

2009: at Indianapolis: Colts (-6.5) 14, Jaguars 12W

San Diego at Oakland

2010: at San Diego: Raiders 28W*, Chargers (-13) 13

2010: at Oakland: Raiders 35W, Chargers (-7) 27

2009: at San Diego: Chargers (-16.5) 24, Raiders 16W*

2009: at Oakland: Chargers (-10.5) 24, Raiders 20W*

Kansas City at Denver

2010: at Kansas City: Chiefs (-8.5) 10, Broncos 6W*

2010: at Denver: Broncos 49W, Chiefs (-1) 29

2009: at Denver: Chiefs 44W, Broncos (-9) 24

2009: at Kansas City: Broncos (-6) 44W, Chiefs 13

Baltimore at Cincinnati

2010: at Baltimore: Ravens (-9.5) 13, Bengals 7W*

2010: at Cincinnati: Bengals 15W, Ravens (-3) 10

2009: at Cincinnati: Bengals 17W*, Ravens (-3) 7

2009: at Baltimore: Bengals 17W, Ravens (-9.5) 14

Detroit at Green Bay

2010: at Detroit: Lions 7W*, Packers (-7) 3

2010: at Green Bay: Packers (-14.5) 28, Lions 26W

2009: at Detroit: Packers (-11.5) 34W*, Lions 12

2009: at Green Bay: Packers (-14) 26W, Lions 0

San Francisco at St. Louis

2010: at St. Louis: Rams (-2.5) 25W*, 49ers 17

2010: at San Francisco: 49ers (-4.5) 23, Rams 20W

2009: at St. Louis: 49ers (-7.5) 28W*, Rams 6

2009: at San Francisco: 49ers (-9) 35W, Rams 0

Pittsburgh at Cleveland

2010: at Cleveland: Steelers (-6.5) 41W*, Browns 9

2010: at Pittsburgh: Steelers (-14) 28W, Browns 10

2009: at Cleveland: Browns 13W*, Steelers (-10) 6

2009: at Pittsburgh: Steelers (-14) 27, Browns 14W

Dallas at N.Y. Giants

2010: at N.Y. Giants: Cowboys 33W, Giants (-12.5) 20

2010: at Dallas: Giants 41W, Cowboys (-3.5) 35

2009: at N.Y. Giants: Giants 31W*, Cowboys (-1) 24

2009: at Dallas: Giants 33, Cowboys (-1) 31


SERIES RECORDS

Series leader is listed in CAPS with its record listed first, followed by series leader's record at this week's game site, followed by series leader's record vs. pointspread at this week's site. This year's games not included.

Tampa Bay at Atlanta ... (9-9)(Atl. 5-4)(T.B. 7-2)

Dallas at N.Y. GIANTS ... (11-9)(6-4)(6-4)

CAROLINA at New Orleans ... (11-9)(7-3)(9-1)

SAN FRANCISCO at St. Louis ... (11-9)(4-6)(5-4)

INDIANAPOLIS at Jacksonville ... (13-5)(6-3)(4-5)

TENNESSEE at Houston ... (13-5)(6-3)(5-4)

Detroit at GREEN BAY ... (17-3)(10-0)(6-4)

Washington at PHILADELPHIA ... (13-7)(5-5)(3-7)

Buffalo at NEW ENGLAND ... (19-1)(10-0)(6-4)

CHICAGO at Minnesota ... (12-8)(3-7)(4-6)

N.Y. JETS at Miami ... (12-8)(6-4)(8-2)

Baltimore at CINCINNATI ... (11-9)(7-3)(7-3)

PITTSBURGH at Cleveland ... (18-2)(9-1)(6-2-2)

Kansas City at DENVER ... (12-8)(9-1)(7-3)

SEATTLE at Arizona ... (10-8)(4-5)(4-5)

SAN DIEGO at Oakland ... (14-6)(7-3)(7-3)


CONFIDENCE POOL

This feature is designed to be helpful to readers who participate in office pools. Each week, the editors will make their selections, picking the teams they believe will win the games, without regard to the pointspread, and assigning a point value to each game. For example, in a week when there are 16 games scheduled, an editor will assign 16 points to the game in which he has the most confidence of the outcome (i.e., the most confidence that his pick will win the game), 15 points to the game in which he has the next-most confidence, all the way down to one point to the game in which he has the least confidence of the outcome.

Matchup Hub Keith Mike H Dan A Eric Mike W Dan P Kevin Eli
Sunday
Washington @ Philadelphia
 Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.  Phil.
   11  12  11  14  12  8  12  11  12
Tampa Bay @ Atlanta  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.  Atl.
   13  16  15  16  15  16  15  16  16
San Francisco @ St. Louis  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.  S.F.
   16  15  14  15  14  15  16  14  15
Chicago @ Minnesota  Minn.  Minn.  Chi.  Chi.  Minn.  Minn.  Chi.  Chi.  Chi.
   3  2  2  7  8  3  10  10  10
Detroit @ Green Bay  G.B.  Det.  Det.  Det.  Det.  Det.  G.B.  Det.  Det.
   9  3  8  8  9  6  7  5  11
Carolina @ New Orleans  N.O.  N.O.  N.O.  N.O.  Car.  N.O.  N.O.  N.O.  N.O.
   12  11  12  11  1  14  6  9  2
Tennessee @ Houston  Hou.  Tenn.  Hou.  Tenn.  Tenn.  Hou.  Hou.  Tenn.  Tenn.
   6  10  7  10  4  9  5  12  5
Baltimore @ Cincinnati  Balt.  Balt.  Balt.  Cin.  Cin.  Cin.  Balt.  Cin.  Cin.
   10  9  5  2  5  4  9  1  7
Pittsburgh @ Cleveland  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.  Pitt.
   15  14  13  12  13  11  14  13  14
Indianapolis @ Jacksonville  Jax.  Jax.  Jax.  Jax.  Ind.  Ind.  Ind.  Ind.  Ind.
   1  1  1  6  11  1  3  4  6
N.Y. Jets @ Miami  Mia.  Mia.  Mia.  Mia.  Mia.  Mia.  NYJ  NYJ  NYJ
   8  6  4  1  7  10  4  3  4
Buffalo @ New England  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.  N.E.
   14  13  16  13  16  13  13  15  13
San Diego @ Oakland  Oak.  S.D.  Oak.  Oak.  Oak.  Oak.  S.D.  Oak.  Oak.
   7  5  6  5  6  12  1  6  9
Kansas City @ Denver  K.C.  Den.  K.C.  K.C.  K.C.  K.C.  Den.  Den.  Den.
   5  4  9  3  3  2  2  2  1
Seattle @ Arizona  Ariz.  Ariz.  Ariz.  Ariz.  Ariz.  Sea.  Ariz.  Ariz.  Ariz.
   2  8  3  4  2  7  8  7  3
Dallas @ N.Y. Giants  NYG  NYG  NYG  NYG  NYG  Dall.  NYG  NYG  NYG
   4  7  10  9  10  5  11  8  8
Tiebreaker: SNF total points  55  43  52  51  58  41  51  47  58
                   
  Hub Keith Mike H Dan A Eric Mike W Dan P Kevin Eli
Points last week  104  96  91  95  96  109  97  109  96
Points season to date  1,397  1,411  1,409  1,416  1,379  1,429  1,431  1,389  1,401
Games won last week  11  9  9  9  10  13  10  12  10
Games won season to date  160  163  161  159  158  162  160  159  164

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