Eagles (-4.5) over VIKINGS
Is there anything that can stop the Birds now? Yup, the cover of Sports Illustrated. It's actually a gorgeous shot of Nick Foles, maybe perfect. Foles has the ball in his hand, with the NFL logo showing (photoshop anyone?), as the snow flakes are falling all around him. But ahhhh . . . The Jinx! Will Foles and the Eagles fall into the evil clutches of the SI jinx? Nah! He is the highest-rated QB in the league at the moment (120.0 passer rating), and the Green Machine is playing as good as any team out there, winning five in a row (with a 4-0-1 spread record). And if they rocked the snow and the elements last week, just think about how many points the Birds can put up in the climate-controlled Mall of America Field. Minny could be without both RBs - the great Adrian Peterson, and workhorse Toby Gerhart. With a 4-0 spread run on the road, gotta try the Eagles, but not gonna go heavy.
PANTHERS (-11) over Jets
Carolina is a beast at home, while the New Yorkers kinda stink on the road. Not the only reasons for this selection, but certainly a good place to start. The Panthers have posted a 5-1 record in Charlotte this season, while covering seven of the last eight at the Bank of America Stadium. The Jets come in on an 0-3 run away from home, but it's the final margins in those games that has sent up a red flag. They have been outscored 105-26, or, an average of 26+ points per game. Ug-ly! And then there's Carolina's propensity to bounce back huge after a defeat. After a loss to the Bills back in Week2, the Panthers came back to bagel the Giants, 38-0, the following week. Then, after losing to Arizona in Week 4, these Southern Cats roared back with a 35-10 win against the Vikings the following Sunday. Grand tally after the last two losses. Carolina 73, opposing schmoes 10. That's enough to make this my Best Bet.
Saints (-6) over RAMS
We've all heard New Orleans is a monster at home, but can not win on the road. There are three reasons to debunk that theory. Drew Brees will wanna prove he has the chops to win on the road. The Saints are actually 3-3 away from the Superdome, so, they can win on the road. And finally, maybe most important, the venue in St. Louis in the Edward Jones Dome, with the key word being dome! Brees inside a dome with Sean Payton coaching is working on a 17-0 run . . . You read that right, 17-0!
JAGUARS (+2) over Bills
What has Buffalo done to deserve the status of a two-point favorite on the road? Still scratching my head to try and figure it out. It's certainly not the Bills' road record the last few years, winning only five of the last 32, or the fact that they have covered just one of the last nine outside of Buffalo. Or maybe people still do not believe in this Jacksonville squad that has won three in a row, and covered four of the last five. Vic believes!
COWBOYS (-6) over Packers
This line might jiggle around a bit, but we like Dallas at any number up to minus seven. No one likes to get embarrassed. No NFL team likes to get blasted for over 40 points. However, it's always the next effort that tells the story. In the last three games that the Cowboys have allowed over 40 points, they have bounced back to win every time the following week. Of course, if Aaron Rodgers should somehow get the start, ignore everything you just read.
Chiefs (-4) over RAIDERS
Kansas City enjoys beating up on the weak sisters of the league, and when it comes to Oakland and its 4-9 record, the Chiefs will not take their foot off the gas, just like the first meeting where KC posted an easy 24-7 W.
Ravens (+6) over LIONS
Baltimore is playing solid ball, winning four of the last five, and when the Ravens lose, it's by six points or less, unless they're playing the Broncos. And last time we looked, it's Detroit, not Denver, on the other side of the field.
FALCONS (-6.5) over Washington
Not sure if Atlanta can get one more win, but this would be the best opportunity.
49ers (-5) over BUCCANEERS
Tampa's little run of four wins in the last five games is about to come to a screeching halt.
TITANS (+3) over Cardinals
Carson Palmer's sore shoulder might come back to bite Arizona as the Cards get ready for Seattle next week.
GIANTS (+7) over Seahawks
Seattle looking ahead to its final two conference home games could let the New Yorkers sneak in for a back-door cover.
Bears (-1) over BROWNS
The line has moved from Cleveland a small favorite to Chicago now a small fav. Vic's gonna follow the money.
Texans (+6) over COLTS
Still "heart" Andrew Luck but his supporting cast is too banged up to lay six against the desperate Houston club.
DOLPHINS (+2) over Patriots
Without Gronk, Tommy Brady's weapons are not gonna be as scary, and note that the Fish come in on a 4-0 spread run.
STEELERS (+3) over Bengals
Cincy is clearly the class of the AFC North, but Pittsburgh as a home underdog is just too tasty to pass up.