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Kibbles and Picks 2022 – Week 16

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Holy s—t, you guys – I might actually have a shot at winning this thing.

Stella and I both had stellar weeks in Week 15, but mine was just a touch better – 11-5 to 10-6 – which means that my lead has doubled to a whopping two games. It’s not a huge margin, but we’ve only got three weeks left. I’m in a better position than I’ve been in in years.

Stella is, of course, utterly unconcerned. She fully anticipates a couple of big weeks in a row (starting with this one) where she leaves me in the dust. She may be right, but for now? I’M WINNING!

We’re at odds on seven of the week’s matchups, so there’s plenty of opportunity for the standings to shift. By how much remains to be seen, but I have no doubt that movement is coming.

Kicking things off is the Thursday night game, where I have the Jets winning at home against the visiting Jaguars. I know that the Jets are in a bit of disarray offensively, but I think they can put it together against the Jags. They won’t need a ton, because I think Jacksonville QB Trevor Lawrence struggles a bit against this secondary. Stella has liked what she’s seen from this feisty Jaguars squad – she anticipates another big day for receivers Christian Kirk and Zay Jones (though she doubts that Jones will score three times again this week). She won’t be surprised if the Jags turn the ball over a couple of times – this Jets D is pretty good – but she expects they’ll protect the ball well enough to win.

In one of our patented “no one gives a crap” games, we’re looking at New Orleans/Cleveland. I picked the Saints, Stella picked the Browns. Neither one of us cares. Nor should you. Go spend time with your family. Or at least watch a better game.

Next up, I’m rolling the dice a little. I’m picking the Giants to beat the Vikings in Minnesota. It feels weird and I’m not at all confident, but I have a hunch that the Vikings are due for a bit of a letdown game. In a vacuum, I think Minnesota is the better team, but for whatever reason, I like the Giants here. Stella thinks I’m an idiot who’s trying to get too cute; by her measure, the Vikings are better at just about every offensive skill position than the Giants. She expects Minnesota to win in a walk, with Justin Jefferson scoring at least once and Dalvin Cook getting it done on the ground.

From there, we go to another game where Stella questions the wisdom of my pick. I’m going with the Patriots to win at home against the Bengals. Yes, the ending of that Las Vegas game was an embarrassing disaster. Yes, the Pats would probably benefit from simply losing the rest of their games. Yes, this is an unevenly talented roster. All true. Still picking the Pats. I’m a homer and I won’t apologize. Stella sadly shakes her head at me for this, knowing as she does that the Bengals are across-the-board superior to New England. She thinks Joe Burrow is going to have a field day and that at least one Bengal is going to be wide open on almost every play. She thinks the Pats will struggle to score or even move the ball efficiently against the Cincy defense. Sometimes, she picks against New England to troll me. This is not one of those times.

After that, another boldish choice from yours truly. I’m picking the Eagles to win against the Cowboys in Dallas. Sure, QB Jalen Hurts – Philly’s most important offensive player – is out for the game, ceding the snaps to backup Gardner Minshew. But I think that they’ve got the weapons to weather that loss. A.J. Brown and Devonta Smith aren’t going to stop catching the ball and tight end Dallas Goedert is back. Miles Sanders will get more carries. The Eagles will be fine. Stella agrees, but also believes that the Eagles might play with a touch less urgency considering their excellent positioning w/r/t the postseason. Not that they won’t try, but the truth is that the Cowboys need this game more. And with the way the Dallas running game has looked, they could really control the tempo of the game. Add in a few Prescott-Lamb hookups and things are looking very good for the Cowboys.

I’ve got Pittsburgh winning at home against the Raiders. Honestly, I think that the win last week over New England was more or less the Super Bowl for this Las Vegas team; they’re not going to get up for the Steelers. Stella concedes my point, but also thinks that Josh Jacobs and Davante Adams are too good to be shut down by this inconsistent defense. We do agree, however, that this is another game that you might not want to bother watching.

Lastly, in our sole disagreement among the three Christmas Day matchups, I have the visiting Broncos knocking off the Rams in Los Angeles. Why? I don’t know. Had to pick someone. Stella seconds that sentiment. The Broncos are bad and the Rams are bad and this game is bad – the lump of coal in the NFL’s stocking.

There we have it. Seven games. It’s going to be interesting to see how it plays out, so be sure to follow along and experience it for yourself. Happy Holidays!

(winners in caps)

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ALLEN’S PICKS

Thursday, December 22

Jacksonville at NY JETS

Saturday, December 24

BUFFALO at Chicago

NEW ORLEANS at Cleveland

Houston at TENNESSEE

Seattle at KANSAS CITY

NY GIANTS at Minnesota

Cincinnati at NEW ENGLAND

DETROIT at Carolina

Atlanta at BALTIMORE

Washington at SAN FRANCISCO

PHILADELPHIA at Dallas

Las Vegas at PITTSBURGH

Sunday, December 25

Green Bay at MIAMI

DENVER at LA RAMS

TAMPA BAY at Arizona

Monday, December 26

LA CHARGERS at Indianapolis

Week 15 record: 11-5

Season record: 135-85-2

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STELLA’S PICKS

Thursday, December 22

JACKSONVILLE at NY Jets

Saturday, December 24

BUFFALO at Chicago

New Orleans at CLEVELAND

Houston at TENNESSEE

Seattle at KANSAS CITY

NY Giants at MINNESOTA

CINCINNATI at New England

DETROIT at Carolina

Atlanta at BALTIMORE

Washington at SAN FRANCISCO

Philadelphia at DALLAS

LAS VEGAS at Pittsburgh

Sunday, December 25

Green Bay at MIAMI

Denver at LA RAMS

TAMPA BAY at Arizona

Monday, December 26

LA CHARGERS at Indianapolis

Week 15 record: 10-6

Season record: 133-87-2

Last modified on Thursday, 22 December 2022 10:10

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