Our NFL picks against the spread for Week 12 is live just in time for the tripleheader of Thanksgiving football. Will any of the three underdogs pull off upsets against legitimate Super Bowl contenders on Turkey Day?
As for the entire Week 12 NFL schedule, we’re intrigued to see how the Jacksonville Jaguars do on the road against a red-hot Houston Texans squad in a major AFC South battle. Houston finds itself as a one-point home favorite.
With Joe Burrow lost for the season, the Cincinnati Bengals attempt to get over that entire season-changing injury at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are home underdogs.
Moving forward, we now look at Week 12 and what that slate has to offer for NFL picks.
NFL picks against the spread, Week 12 edition
|Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans (+1.0)
|Nov. 26, 1:00 PM ET
|Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals (+1.0)
|Nov. 26, 1:00 PM ET
|Cleveland Browns (+1.5) at Denver Broncos
|Nov. 26, 4:05 PM ET
|Buffalo Bills (+3.5) at Philadelphia Eagles
|Nov. 26, 4:25 PM ET
Houston Texans keep it going against Jacksonville Jaguars (NFL picks lock)
Houston has won three in a row and six of eight since starting the season 0-2. Its most recent 21-16 win over the Arizona Cardinals might have been the most impressive yet given that stud rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud threw three interceptions. He had tossed two picks in his first nine starts in the NFL.
The defense stepped up big time while veteran running back Devin Singletary topped 100 yards on the ground for the second consecutive time.
Heading into NFL Week 12 as one-point home underdogs, we’re going to go with the Texans in this one against Jacksonville. It was back in Week 3 that the Texans earned their first win of the season against Jacksonville, coming out on top by the score of 37-17 in Duval. That game saw Stroud put up nearly 300 total yards with two touchdowns and zero turnovers. We’re expecting a similar result from the star quarterback in rebounding from last week’s mistake-prone performance.
Cincinnati Bengals overcome Joe Burrow injury
Could Pittsburgh receive a bump on offense after firing coordinator Matt Canada? It’s possible given that the Buffalo Bills saw the same thing in last week’s game with Joe Brady taking over for Ken Dorsey.
We’re still not sold on Kenny Pickett being able to lead a viable offense. He’s thrown all of six touchdowns in 10 starts this season, leading the NFL’s 28th-ranked scoring offense. Play-calling was an issue. Quarterback play remains an issue.
As for Cincinnati, having to go with Jake Browning over the injured Joe Burrow moving forward this season is not ideal. Even then, Joe Mixon should be able to take advantage of a Steelers run defense that is giving up nearly 128 yards per game and 4.4 yards per rush. That’ll be the difference in this one.
Cleveland Browns defense dominates Denver Broncos
Is Dorian Thompson-Robinson the answer for Cleveland with Deshaun Watson sidelined for the season? We’re pretty cold on that idea after the rookie mid-round pick from UCLA put up zero touchdowns with six giveaways in his first two NFL appearances.
In no way does this take away from what Cleveland’s defense that done this season. It dominated the aforementioned Kenny Pickett and Pittsburgh in a 13-10 win last week. The Browns are yielding an average of 18 points per game. Opposing quarterbacks are completing 55% of their passes with nine touchdowns and nine interceptions against this unit.
At 7-3, the expectation here is that the Browns’ defense will stand up and limit what Russell Wilson and Co. do on offense. While Denver has won four consecutive games, it is averaging a mere 22 points per game during that span. In short, Denver does not have a good matchup against Cleveland’s defense.
Buffalo Bills hand Philadelphia Eagles second loss
Buffalo could very well be riding high after ending its recent slump via a blowout 32-6 win over the New York Jets last week. In their first game with Joe Brady calling plays in lieu of the fired Ken Dorsey, Buffalo put up nearly 400 total yards of offense. Its defense also forced four turnovers.
While we understand full well that the league-best Philadelphia Eagles are no New York Jets, there is something to be said about momentum on the part of the Bills.
Sure, Philadelphia also has that after last week’s win over the Kansas City Chiefs. But this could end up being a trap game with a Week 13 outing coming against the San Francisco 49ers. We’d warn against picking Buffalo in this one.