You win some, you lose some.
And last week, I lost one more than I won.
After a couple of strong weeks, I put forth another losing effort, tallying a 7-8 record in what was a loaded Week 13. That brings my total for the season to 91-80-9, with Week 14 providing me an opportunity to get back on track.
Let's get to it.
All lines made available via Bovada.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+5.5) vs. Tennessee Titans
Pick: Jaguars +5.5
Home favorites have dominated Thursday Night Football this season, but I think this will be the exception to the rule. After beating the Colts last week, the Jaguars now have an outside shot of getting back in the mix. I don't know if they'll win outright, but I do expect an effort strong enough to cover a 5.5-point spread.
Atlanta Falcons (+5) vs. Green Bay Packers
Pick: Packers -5
In the NBA, there's a line of thinking that after a team fires its head coach, it puts forth its best effort in the following game. I don't know that logic applies to the NFL, but against a team as inconsistent as the Falcons, it's worth a shot picking the Packers here.
New England (-8) vs. Miami Dolphins
Pick: Patriots -8
Given the Patriots' history of playing December games in Miami, this feels like a risky pick. But thanks to that storyline alone, I expect the public be backing the Dolphins with a line that's artificially decreased due to games from previous seasons that won't actually have any effect on what happens Sunday.
New York Giants (-4) vs Washington Redskins
Pick: Giants -4
Mark Sanchez was sitting at home two weeks ago. Now he's starting at quarterback for the Washington Redskins. The Giants aren't anything special, but they should possess enough talent to take advantage of this depleted Washington roster.
Indianapolis Colts (+5) vs. Houston Texans
Pick: Colts +5
The Texans are riding a 9-game winning streak while the Colts are coming off a loss to the lowly Jaguars. I'm going to give Indianapolis the benefit of the doubt and forecast a bounce-back game, as Houston's winning streak simply doesn't seem sustainable.
Baltimore Ravens (+7) vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Pick: Chiefs -7
After allowing the Raiders to hang around much longer than anyone expected, I think the Chiefs are due for a blowout. As inconsistent as Kansas City's defense has been, it's hard for me to imagine Lamar Jackson keeping pace with one of the league's best offenses.
New Orleans (-9) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Pick: Saints -9
In the opening week of the NFL season, the Bucs beat the Saints 48-40. Can you say "revenge game?" I expect New Orleans to pour the points on early and often, with Jameis Winston unlikely to keep pace.
Carolina Panthers (-2) vs. Cleveland Browns
Pick: Browns +2
This line feels like an overreaction to the sound beating the Texans put on the Browns a week ago. Prior to that, Cleveland had earned two consecutive double-digit victories of its own. I don't think the Browns will pick up another blowout here, but I do think the talent on these two respective teams is closer than a 2-point spread indicates.
New York Jets (+3.5) vs. Buffalo Bills
Pick: Jets +3.5
I don't feel great about going with the Jets, who are currently riding a 6-game losing streak. But given the inconsistencies of Josh Allen and the talent all over New York's roster, this line feels like it's at least a half-point too high.
Denver Broncos (-4.5) vs. San Francisco 49ers
Pick: 49ers +4.5
This line seems low -- suspiciously low. I'm going to back the 49ers +4.5 here and hope that the oddsmakers have something up their sleeves.
Cincinnati Bengals (+14) vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Pick: Charger -14
Simply put, the Bengals are a completely different team without A.J. Green. I got burned by the Chief's big line against the Raiders last week, but I'm not going to stop me from laying the two touchdowns here.
Philadelphia Eagles (+3.5) vs. Dallas Cowboys
Pick: Eagles +3.5
The Cowboys have all the momentum in the world and are coming off a long week of rest, while the Eagles, meanwhile, are coming off a short week. Everything in the world says to go with Dallas, but I'm going to make a contrarian pick and bank on Philadelphia to cover the 3.5 points -- if not win the game outright.
Pittsburgh Steelers (-10.5) vs. Oakland Raiders
Pick: Steelers -10.5
Traveling East to West is no easy feat and the Raiders showed last week that at the very least, they have enough talent to cover a big spread. But with the Steelers coming off a loss to the Chargers, they should be looking to make a statement and the 2-10 Raiders should provide an ideal opponent to help them do just that.
Detroit Lions (-3) vs. Arizona Cardinals
Pick: Cardinals +3
Are we sure the right team is favored in this game? Sure, Green Bay has been a disaster, but the Cardinals still had to win that game on the road. Winning two in a row could prove difficult for this Arizona team, but it's not like the Lions are one of the better -- or even more average -- teams in the NFL.
Los Angeles Rams (-3) vs. Chicago Bears
Pick: Rams -3
Anytime I can get the Rams laying less than a touchdown, I feel obligated to take it. And even with Mitchell Trubisky possibly returning for the Bears, this feels like no exception.
Minnesota Vikings (+3.5) vs. Seattle Seahawks
Pick: Vikings +3.5
Seattle has been solid this season, but I still think Minnesota is the more talented team. Give me the Vikings to not only cover, but win this game outright.