NFL picks, predictions for Week 16: Cowboys edge Eagles; Bengals beat Patriots; Lions, Jaguars on cusp of playoffs

Josh Allen

The NFL playoff picture remains complicated in Week 16, and five 7-7 teams are in the spotlight this Christmas week looking for help.

The Jets are ninth in the AFC standings ahead of Thursday’s prime-time matchup against the Jaguars. Will Zach Wilson or Mike White compete? This is a development worth watching.

Four 7-7 teams play in the 1 p.m. window on Saturday.

Detroit has turned into comeback history after winning five of its last six games under sophomore coach Dan Campbell. The Lions have a game they absolutely must win away against Carolina. Tennessee is in the middle of a losing streak and Ryan Tannehill is struggling with an ankle injury. There’s no room for error against the Texans.

New England are in Cincinnati after losing to Las Vegas through Jakobi Meyers’ unfortunate cross and face a Bengals side who will be looking to secure home-field advantage in the AFC. Seattle’s road to the playoffs has also gotten tougher, and it’s not getting any easier in Kansas City.

With that in mind, a look at our track record at week 16:

Recording: 138-84-2, .618

Here are our straight picks for week 16 (rows courtesy of BetMGM):

POWER RANKINGS: Lions, Giants, Chargers boost playoff prospects; Cowboys, patriots, jets fade away

NFL picks, predictions for week 16

  • Jacksonville Jaguars at New York Jets (-1)

Thursday 8:15 p.m. Prime Video

Given the improvement on both sides, this should be an entertaining game. The Jets won a 26-21 thriller last season, but the Jaguars have won four of their last six games. Trevor Lawrence has 14 TDs and one interception at this stretch. Stick with the hot quarterback.

Choose: Jaguars 27, Jets 24

Result: Jaguar 19, Jet 3

  • Atlanta Falcons at Baltimore Ravens (-7)

Saturday, 1 p.m., FOX

The Ravens desperately need Lamar Jackson back, and we’ll pick this game as if he’s returning in a must-win situation if Baltimore is looking to win the AFC North. The Ravens have averaged 110 passing yards in the past two weeks without Jackson. Baltimore hits back and the defense pressures Desmond Ridder on his second start.

Choose: Ravens 24, hawks 20

  • Detroit Lions (-3) vs Carolina Panthers

Saturday, 1 p.m., FOX

The Lions have become Cinderella history this season after winning five of their last six games. Last week’s win over the Jets was one Detroit would have spat out in the past. Carolina is 4-3 at home and still in the NFC South race despite a 5-9 record. Detroit is 5-0 if it concedes under 100 yards, and that’s been happening for the last three weeks.

Choose: Lions 27, Panthers 17

  • Buffalo Bills (-9) at the Chicago Bears

Saturday, 1 p.m., CBS

The Bills are strong favorites at home against the Bears. Chicago quarterback Justin Fields will make a few plays, but the trouble spot in defense — which hasn’t turned over in the Bears’ last four home losses. That won’t work against Josh Allen – who will keep Buffalo No. 1 in the AFC. The Bills are 1-4 ATS in their last five games when favored by more than seven points.

Choose: Bills 30, bears 20

  • New Orleans Saints at Cleveland Browns (-3)

Saturday, 1 p.m., CBS

The Saints haven’t fared well against AFC North teams this season — and former Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton will get another shot in Cleveland. The Browns are 2-1 since Deshaun Watson returned from suspension and the defense has only allowed 13.3 points per game during this period. Cleveland is one step closer to .500.

Choose: Brown’s 26, Saint’s 20

  • Seattle Seahawks at Kansas City Chiefs (-10)

Saturday, 1 p.m., FOX

The Seahawks have lost three out of four games since bye week, and the defense has allowed 28.5 points per game in that stretch. That’s not a recipe for success against Kansas City, which outran Houston with a win. Kansas City is happy to be back home after three away games — and keeping pace in the race for home field advantage in the AFC. The Chiefs are only 4-10 ATS with just one cover at home this year.

Choose: Chiefs 34, Seahawks 26

Kirk cousins

  • New York Giants at Minnesota Vikings (-3.5)

Saturday, 1 p.m., FOX

The Giants are still in the NFC wildcard mix, and they need a win on the road here to keep pace in this race. New York is on the road 3-2 S/U this season. However, Minnesota is 7-1 S/U at home. Kirk Cousins ​​has 15 TDs and only four interceptions in those games. The Vikings always win narrowly.

Choose: Vikings 28, Giants 24

  • Cincinnati Bengals (-3.5) with the New England Patriots

Saturday, 1 p.m., CBS

The Bengals are on top form with six straight wins and the defense has only allowed 88.3 rushing yards per game at this stretch. Can New England pull this off to back up Mac Jones against a powerful pass rush? How will the Patriots get to Joe Burrow — who has 14 TDs and just four interceptions on this winning streak? The Bengals keep rolling on the road.

Choose: Bengalis 28, Patriots 24

  • Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans (-7)

Saturday, 1 p.m., CBS

The Titans need this one at home and they need to get the offense going. Tennessee has averaged just 15.5 points per game over their past four losses, and they’ve had five turnovers over the past two weeks. Houston, who struggled against Kansas City, has forced seven turnovers in the past three weeks. Can Tennessee play a clean game?

Choose: Titans 24, Texans 19

Brock Purdy

  • Washington Commanders at San Francisco 49ers (-7)

Saturday 4:05 p.m. CBS

The 49ers had extra time off to prepare for Washington and the offense will continue to develop with Brock Purdy. The better story for San Francisco, which has not conceded more than 275 yards in a game in a seven-game winning streak. Washington better seize every opportunity to have a chance.

Choose: 49ers 28, commanders 20

  • Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys (-1.5)

Saturday, 4:25 p.m., FOX

The Cowboys have won their last four home games against the Eagles, and the last three have been outstanding. How Dallas is recovering from the loss to Jacksonville – a game in which the Jaguars had 503 yards total. Philadelphia faces Dak Prescott instead of Cooper Rush this time – and he’s 7-3 against the Eagles. With Jalen Hurts (shoulder) questionable, the Cowboys are the easier pick.

Choose: Cowboys 31, Eagles 28

  • Las Vegas Raiders at Pittsburgh Steelers (-2)

Saturday, 8:15 p.m., NFL Network

Pittsburgh is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Immaculate Reception – the legendary 13-7 win over the Raiders. This comes a week after Las Vegas won one of the most incredible game-ending plays in NFL history. The Steelers have won three of their last four games while giving up 17 points or fewer. The Steelers win another defensive fight.

Choose: Steelers 24, Raiders 21

Tua Tagovailoa

  • Green Bay Packers at Miami Dolphins (-4.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m., FOX

The Packers are clinging to playoff hopes in the NFC, but it won’t be easy on the road in Miami. Sure, the Dolphins are on a three-game losing streak, but all of those games have been down the road against potential Super Bowl contenders. Green Bay’s defense will give up too many big plays. Aaron Rodgers will lead a comeback in the fourth quarter that is narrowly missed.

Choose: Dolphins 32, Packers 26

  • Denver Broncos (-1) at the Los Angeles Rams

Sunday, 4:30 p.m., CBS/Nickelodeon

Brett Rypien vs. Baker Mayfield is a dream Christmas duel. It’s been the best season for both teams, but the Broncos have managed to force three turnovers each in the past two weeks. This will be a challenge for the Rams, who are out for a short week. However, Denver is 1-6 S/U on the way. Mayfield leads another win in a wild finish.

Choose: Rams 20, Broncos 18

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-4) vs. Arizona Cardinals

Sunday, 8:20 p.m., NBC

Tampa Bay has lost three of their last four games, and they’ve lost their last four away games. This isn’t a layup, even against a Cardinals team that has averaged 15.5 points in their last four losses. Tom Brady needs to play better – and he’s doing it against Arizona in a tight.

Choose: Buccaneers 22, Cardinals 19

  • Los Angeles Chargers (-3.5) at Indianapolis Colts

Monday, 8:15 p.m. ESPN

The Colts blew a 33-point lead last week and are back in the prime-time spotlight with interim coach Jeff Saturday. Indianapolis is 3-2 ATS down Saturday, but the two losses were at home. The Chargers are heating up with healthy receivers Keenan Allen and Mike Williams averaging 170.5 yards in the past two weeks.

Choose: Chargers 28, Colts 23

Dave Gallo

Dave Gallo is a pioneering sports analytics expert, renowned for his revolutionary work in AI-driven sports simulations, projections, and advanced statistical analysis. With a profound passion for sports and technology, he crafts cutting-edge computer models that accurately predict outcomes. Dave's game-changing insights have reshaped strategy, player evaluation, and decision-making across various sports. His dynamic presentations make complex analytics accessible and inspiring, ensuring his legacy as a visionary in sports analytics. Check out Dave's Pick Record.

Recent Posts