If you’re looking for value-packed favorites that look like they’re packing plenty of punch on the Week 12 schedule, then you should know that the New Orleans Saints, Baltimore Ravens, and New England Patriots are all looking good heading into their respective Week 12 matchups. If you want to know why all three teams look like value-packed picks this coming weekend, then let’s get down to business with my trio of week 12 picks right now.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Jacksonville Jaguars
What: Thursday Night Football, Thanksgiving Day Game: Atlanta Falcons (4-6) at New Orleans Saints (9-1)
When: Thursday, November 22, 2018, 8:20 PM ET
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, LA
Partly Cloudy: 14°C | 57°F
Wind: 8 MPH W
Stadium Type: Dome
Atlanta ended up on the wrong end of a narrow 22-19 home loss against Dallas on Sunday while failing to cover the spread as a 3.5-point home favorite. Matt Ryan passed for 291 yards with one touchdown and one interception and the Falcons nearly came back from a 10-point deficit to get the win before coming up just short and falling on Brett Maher’s game-winning 42-yard field goal as time expired.
New Orleans won its ninth straight game by obliterating the defending champion Eagles 48-7 on Sunday as Drew Brees passed for 363 yards and four touchdowns to lead the way to victory. Veteran running back Mark Ingram had his second straight impressive performance with 103 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries while veteran wide receiver Torrey Smith hauled in 10 passes for 157 yards and one score.
I don’t see a whole lot of sense in beating around the bush with my pick on this Week 12 NFC South divisional matchup simply because New Orleans is playing lights out and Atlanta looks lost and confused for the most part. The Saints are averaging 11.5 points per game more than Atlanta while also giving up 4.3 fewer points per game defensively.
I know just one of the last 10 matchups between these longtime division rivals has been decided by more than this game’s 13-point spread, but I’m banking on New Orleans to do just that in this contest.
The Falcons are an awful 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games. On the flip side of the coin, Drew Brees and company have gone a perfect 8-0 ATS in their last eight games, 6-0 ATS in their last six games against their NFC counterparts and an impressive 14-6 ATS in their last 20 games against their NFC South division rivals. I like New Orleans to lay an emphatic spanking on Atlanta in this one!
Predicted Score: New Orleans Saints 38 | Atlanta Falcons 21
Oakland Raiders at Baltimore Ravens
What: Oakland Raiders (2-8) at Baltimore Ravens (5-5)
When: Sunday, November 25, 2018, 1:00 PM ET
Where: M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, MD
TV: CBS, DTV: 705
Chance Light Rain: 10°C | 50°F
Wind: 6 MPH NE
Stadium Type: Open Air
Oakland managed to get past Arizona 23-21 on Sunday to get their second win of the season in a game that nobody outside the state of Arizona watched. Derek Carr passed for 192 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions and Oakland’s defense picked off Jared Goff twice to thwart three TD passes by Arizona’s prized rookie signal-caller.
Baltimore crept past Cincinnati 24-21 in their Week 11 AFC North divisional battle in rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson’s first career start in place of the injured Joe Flacco. Jackson rushed a whopping 27 times for 117 yards while running back Gus Edwards rushed 17 times for 115 yards and one score. Baltimore won the time of possession battle by keeping the ball for just over 38 total minutes, thanks to their 265 team rushing yards.
While I’m not real fond of the double-digit point spread surrounding this matchup, I am going to advise you to back the Baltimore Ravens to narrowly cover it, mostly because of their league-leading defense (18.1 ppg). The Raiders rank a pitiful 30th in scoring (17.0 ppg) and the 23 points they scored on Arizona represents their third highest point total of the season following consecutive performances of putting six points or less on the board.
Oakland has gone 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games against their AFC counterparts, 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall and 0-7 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up win. On the flip side of the coin, Baltimore has gone 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games after rushing for more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game while also going 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games in Week 12.
With the home team in this series going 6-2 ATS in their last 8 meetings and Oakland going 1-5 ATS in their last six road dates against Baltimore, I say the Ravens win and cover to help Oakland take another step toward getting the top pick in next year’s NFL Draft.
Predicted Score: Baltimore Ravens 28 | Oakland Raiders 10
New England Patriots at New York Jets
What: New England Patriots (7-3) at New York Jets (3-7)
When: Sunday, November 25, 2018, 1:00 PM ET
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
TV: CBS, DTV: 709
Chance Light Rain: 8°C | 47°F
Wind: 7 MPH NE
Stadium Type: Open Air
The New England Patriots have had a week off to regroup from their stunning 34-10 beatdown loss at Tennessee in Week 10. Tom Brady passed for 254 yards with no touchdowns or interceptions against the Titans and New England’s defense gave up two TD passes to Marcus Mariota and a pair of TD runs to running back Derrick Henry.
The Jets have lost four straight including their humbling 41-10 blowout loss against the incompetent Buffalo Bills. New York veteran Josh McCown was awful in passing for a modest 134 yards with two interceptions and no touchdowns while New York’s defense allowed Buffalo’s Matt Barkley to pass for 232 yards with two touchdowns and no picks in his first start of the season.
I’m just going to get right to the point by saying that I’m stunned that only 74 percent of public bettors are backing the Patriots in this contest. The Patriots have won four straight and eight of the last 10 meetings against the Jets and they’re going to be fully focused on getting back on track and picking up momentum. The Patriots average almost eight points per game more than New York while also giving up almost two fewer points per game defensively.
The Patriots are a perfect 4-0 ATS in their last four games against their AFC East counterparts, 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a bye week, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games in November and 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games against a team with a losing record. Conversely, the Jets have gone just 7-19 ATS in their last 26 games in the month of November, 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games against their AFC counterparts and 1-5 SU and ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up loss. There is absolutely no way that Tom Brady and the New England Patriots fail to win this game and win it huge!
Predicted Score: New England Patriots 35 | New York Jets 17