NFL Week 11 picks, odds: Bills blast Colts, Saints roll Eagles, Texans scare Titans and Packers edge Vikings

There are many terrible things about a 17-game season, mostly trying to remember what teams’ final records will be (9-8, you disgust me). One nice thing? We have an actual halfway point! Well, not really but you can at least divide 18 weeks in half and everyone has played nine games or more at this point. 

Please don’t check my math. Instead, focus on the fact we’re halfway through a full, fairly normal NFL season and you can’t definitely say if there’s a single good team in the league. The Bills might be great, but they lost 9-6 to the Jaguars. The Titans are rolling, but they lost to the frigging Jets. Tampa Bay is the defending champ, and it just lost to WFT’s league-worst defense. 

Find a good team and I’ll find you a flaw. This is about to be an epic run to close out the season with a bunch of weird stuff happening and the promise of some fireworks in the playoffs. Let’s get hot with the picks. 

All NFL odds are via Caesars Sportsbook

NFL Week 11 Picks

Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ETTV: Fox/NFL Network | Stream: fuboTV (click here)

Latest Odds:

Atlanta Falcons

The Patriots are a suspiciously large road favorite here given what we’ve seen out of “Thursday Night Football” the last few weeks. The home team has covered four of the last five weeks on “TNF,” the lone exception being the Colts lobbing a 40-burger on the hapless Jets. Prime-time games have been friendly to home teams lately as well. I just can’t ignore the obvious mismatches here. The Patriots pass defense is rounding into shape and has been locking teams down while Christian Barmore wrecks havoc up front and Matt Judon piles up sacks. The Pats are running the ball really well and Damien Harris cleared concussion protocol. Maybe Dean Pees dials up pressure to slow down the run or stacks the box? It wouldn’t surprise me and it probably wouldn’t surprise Josh McDaniels either. We might see an aggressive Mac Jones early before the Pats lean into the run game, similar to what they did against the Browns. I have zero interest in betting against the Pats over the next few weeks.

The Pick: Patriots 28, Falcons 3

Props, Best Bets: Hunter Henry anytime TD +210, Pats -7

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Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: CBS | Stream: Paramount+ (click here)

Latest Odds:

Chicago Bears

My initial lean on this game was the Ravens, but sometimes you see two big favorites on the road in the first two games and you get a little nervous. Our excellent CBS Sports research team — shouts to Ben Bradley, Jon Fisher, Sean Ahearn, Ryan Satsky and the whole crew, because they crush it behind the scenes — sold me on staying with the Ravens. With an assist to the folks at Tru Media: the Ravens and Bears are both bad at third-down conversions on offense (29th and 28th, respectively). But the Ravens are much better on defense at stopping the same conversions, second in the NFL (32%) versus the Bears at 14th (40%). Additionally, Baltimore is an elite red-zone team on offense (70% of the time it scores a touchdown) and defense (44% allowing one), while Chicago is below average in red-zone conversions (54%). Unless the Bears decide to change their defensive tendencies — they rank second-lowest in the NFL in terms of blitzing — Lamar should cook here. He has three TDs and three picks against the blitz, an 11-to-5 ratio when defenses don’t send pressure, and his yards per attempt spikes 2.6 when he has time. 

The Pick: Ravens 27, Bears 17

Props, Best Bets: Mark Andrews anytime TD

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: CBS | Stream: Paramount+ (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Tennessee Titans

We were told the offense wouldn’t change without Derrick Henry, but you would need to be born the day Todd Downing said it for that to be the first lie of your life. Before Henry went down, 32% of Ryan Tannehill’s throws were going 10+ yards down the field. That number is now at 24%. The Titans have also seen a 12% spike of throws at or behind the line of scrimmage since the Big Dog suffered his foot injury. D’onta Foreman is the best of their committee, but it’s reasonable to wonder if the Titans will commit to him, even with Jeremy McNichols likely down this week. I really dislike betting on the Texans, but the Titans had their lowest-scoring game since Week 1 last week with 23 points and only produced 194 yards in their Week 9 upset of the Rams. Factor in a trip to New England the following week and this reeks of a weird Texans cover in a sleepwalk/coffin-kick game.

The Pick: Titans 17, Texans 14

Props, Best Bets: Texans +10.5, Brandin Cooks over receiving yards if it’s less than 65

Colts at Bills

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: CBS | Stream: Paramount+ (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Buffalo Bills

Fun rematch of last year’s playoff game. Carson Wentz is playing better than I expected and is on the NFL’s version of the Jordan Spieth comeback. If that pathway actually happens, somehow Kyle Porter and I will end up doing a four-part mini-series podcast. Jonathan Taylor is a monster. The first three Colts “picks” of 2020 were DeForest Buckner, Taylor and Michael Pittman. GM Chris Ballard is very good at his job. Unfortunately for the Colts, Buffalo is quite simply the best defense in football this year. It’s not being talked about because Josh Allen didn’t take an equally exponential leap in 2021 (an impossible feat), and the Bills have some weird results on their resume. 



I think we just chalk it up to football being weird with this team. The Bills flexed back on the Jets last week and this is a bad matchup for the Colts. Buffalo has given up just two 100-yard *team* rushing games this year: one was Derrick Henry, the other was the Chiefs, which was a “dare you to run” situation. They won’t dare Indy to run because Sean McDermott wants Wentz throwing as much as possible against his defense. 

The Pick: Bills 35, Colts 14

Props, Best Bets: Bills -7, Stefon Diggs over yards 75 or lower

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Cleveland Browns

I live in the South and know less than nothing about Cleveland weather. But this Sunday is setting up as a miserable affair, with a bunch of chilly water falling from the sky and 15 mph winds. It’s supposed to be a high of 46 degrees, but if for some reason Mother Nature gets weird, there could be sub-freezing temps and snow, which are coming Monday. Dan Campbell is tough as nails, but Jared Goff is not a cold-weather guy. The Lions stink at stopping the run, and Nick Chubb is back and healthy. Plus, Case Keenum can operate this offense just fine if the “beat up” Baker Mayfield can’t play. The Lions will be put into pass-heavy mode in bad weather with Myles Garrett staring down a DPOY trophy. Random but Garrett is 3-1 to win the DPOY trophy at Caesars. Bet that if you haven’t. 

The Pick: Browns 27, Lions 14

Props, Best Bets: Nope

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: CBS | Stream: Paramount+ (click here)  

Latest Odds:

New York Jets

We betting on Joe Flacco or against him? What are the Jets doing???? This is a long-suffering fanbase, and if you give them a sniff of competency, they immediately start Joe Flacco in 2021. I’m not sure there’s a real-life relationship equivalent. Maybe asking your spouse to vacuum the living room before your parents come and instead said spouse sets the living room on fire? The weird thing is the Jets are only three-point dogs at home. If you look at the numbers here it’s impossible to argue for the Jets. Miami is pressuring a league-high 35% of the time and the Jets are bottom five in pressure rate allowed. The Jets are bottom 10 in every major passing category defensively. Tua Tagovailoa was limited Wednesday, but in reading his and the coaching staff quotes he should be good to go. The only argument here for the Jets is “weird stuff happens” or “it was cold for the Florida team.” How do you bet on that versus “bet against 36-year-old Joe Flacco”?

The Pick: Dolphins 17, Jets 10

Props, Best Bets: Nope

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Minnesota Vikings

Are we going to pretend Aaron Rodgers isn’t on a vengeance tour right now? The irony of the Jordan Love pick is it gave Green Bay at least two years of peak FU-MVP Rodgers. And now we’ve got the Immunized Reunion Tour, except there’s an interesting plot twist. Because Davante Adams and Rodgers each missed games, the Green Bay defense was forced to step up. And it’s stepped up big, allowing 11.3 points per game over the last three while playing Kyler Murray, Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson (the last one admittedly gimpy in the hand). Aaron Jones being hurt is a problem, but I think it just condenses the Green Bay offense around Adams and A.J. Dillon. This is a statement slate for Rodgers — at Vikings, vs. Rams, vs. Bears, at Ravens — and he’s fully aware. Rodgers is 15-9-1 against Minnesota in his career, and now he’s very angry. 

The Pick: Packers 24, Vikings 21

Props, Best Bets: Packers -2.5

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles coaching staff finally started doing the right stuff over the last few weeks with the rushing attack. It’s a little bewildering to see Jordan Howard and Boston Scott average over 200 rush yards per game. Either the Eagles are completely locked in from a rushing perspective or they just faced three of the 10 worst rush defenses in football by DVOA. You can’t really run on the Saints, and if the Eagles put everything on Jalen Hurts, it will end the same as the early season games, with Hurts scoring in garbage time. Great fantasy play every single week, but the Saints might roll here.

The Pick: Saints 27, Eagles 21

Props, Best Bets: Saints +2

49ers at Jaguars

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here) 

Latest Odds:

Jacksonville Jaguars

Very rare event here, but I’m sacrificing myself for the betterment of football. You want/and/or/need Kyle Shanahan’s cooking schemes in the playoffs. The 49ers have to take care of business here if they want to make the postseason. The Jags — a.k.a. the 250s — are actually solid against the run, allowing only 3.9 yards per rush on the year. I almost picked the Jags to win and cover as a reverse jinx for my 49ers futures, but I legit believe the 49ers are about to start cooking. They’ve been sloppy all season and something was wrong in the locker room early on this year. A fully healthy George Kittle makes a massive difference.

The Pick: 49ers 27, Jaguars 17

Props, Best Bets: George Kittle anytime TD

Washington Football Team at Panthers

Sunday, 1 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Carolina Panthers

May not feel like it outside of the South but this is a pretty big game. Cam Newton is back (!!) and his first game as starter is against Ron Rivera. This matchup is #RevengeGame jet fuel. Washington’s offense put a damn licking on Tampa Bay last week with that closing drive. (Nineteen plays, 80 yards of offense and 10 minutes, 26 seconds off the clock is a soul-crushing drive.) I think Carolina’s defense as a whole is better than Washington’s. Carolina is second best in terms of defensive yards per play. A cynic could chalk up Cam’s performance against Arizona as a fluke. But roll that cynic into Bank of America Stadium after 12:30 p.m. ET. That place is gonna be rocking. You can’t pay me to bet against the Panthers here.  

The Pick: Panthers 24, WFT 14

Props, Best Bets: Panthers -3 (I bet -2.5 earlier in the week but 3 is fine), anytime Cam TD

Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ETTV: CBS | Stream: Paramount+ (click here)

Latest Odds:

Las Vegas Raiders

Look, the reality of the Raiders season is they can’t continue to operate solely on adrenaline and motivation at an NFL level. It worked for the first two weeks after Jon Gruden resigned and Henry Ruggs was arrested. At a certain point, it’s not even adversity that takes a toll — it’s attrition. When you lose your head coach and No. 1 receiver in a span of two weeks, regardless of circumstances, it’s going to catch up to you. The Raiders soared into their Week 8 bye with wins over Denver and Philadelphia but averaged 15 points per game the last two weeks while seeing Derek Carr’s yards per attempt plummet from 8.5 to 6.9. Las Vegas went 0-2 in those games, and it wasn’t going up against stout defenses. The Bengals have cratered back to earth on defense, so there’s a chance Carr and Co. rebound here, but when you play the Raiders you can just bracket Darren Waller and force their passing game to go through Bryan Edwards and Hunter Renfrow. It neutralizes what Las Vegas wants to do. And the Raiders shouldn’t be able to find an answer for the Bengals receiving corps either.  

The Pick: Bengals 31, Raiders 24

Props, Best Bets: Bengals 

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Seattle Seahawks

First things first — if you hear/see/get an alert about Kyler Murray being out (the Cards are keeping it pretty tight but have let it be known the last two weeks; I think he plays but could be wrong) bet the Seahawks. I don’t love backing a Russell Wilson who can’t feel his fingers, but Seattle as a dog is ridiculous given how bad the Cardinals offense is without Murray and DeAndre Hopkins (3.2 yards per play and 4.9 yards per pass attempt bad). The win over San Francisco with Colt McCoy was massive, but it isn’t reality. We know Russ is playing as a home dog and the Cards *should* sit Kyler with the bye coming next week.

The Pick: Seahawks 21, Cardinals 17

Props, Best Bets: Seahawks +2.5

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ETTV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Kansas City Chiefs

Hot take: this game doesn’t meet our expectations. How can it? If we don’t get 2018 Chiefs-Rams, it’s probably a disappointment given how the Cowboys are operating and how we know the Chiefs can work. Dak Prescott (five) and Patrick Mahomes (three) are first and second in 400-yard games since the start of 2020. But the Dallas ground game has been its hallmark this year, with the Cowboys averaging 139.6 yards per game rushing, good for fourth in the NFL. And that ground game gives me pause when it comes to KC, but the Chiefs defense has been immensely better over the last five games. The competition has been worse, no doubt, but moving Chris Jones inside changed things for Kansas City. (Since Week 9, Jones has seven total pressures, which is third in the NFL behind only Jeffery Simmons and DeForest Bucker for interior DL.) Tyron Smith is supposed to play; if he doesn’t I love the Chiefs here. 

The Pick: Chiefs 31, Cowboys 27

Props, Best Bets: TBD

Sunday, 8:20 p.m. ETTV: NBC | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Los Angeles Chargers

How are the Steelers this big of a dog in this spot? The Chargers are taking on water right now and drew a terrible matchup — do you remember what it looked like in their little soccer stadium when Steelers fans showed up for the last matchup? They played “Renegade”!! More importantly, the Chargers are the league’s worst rush defense and the Steelers would love nothing more than to give Najee Harris 42 carries in this game. If Harris hits 100 rushing yards here, he’ll join the legendary Franco Harris as the only Steelers rookies with three or more 100-yard rushing games in a single season. The Chargers have allowed 100 yards rushing or more in eight games this season. And offensively, Justin Herbert has regressed. It’s probably coaching, but I’m not interested in backing him against a good defense as long as Joe Lombardi is keeping the reins on.

The Pick: Steelers 21, Chargers 14

Props, Best Bets: Under 47, over Najee Harris carries

Monday, 8:15 p.m. ETTV: ESPN | Stream: fuboTV (click here)  

Latest Odds:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

These are not Eli Manning’s Giants, so we can’t count on them to simply take out Tom Brady in front of the entire world. Oddly enough, these NFC teams have met each of the last five years and the Giants have won four of them. Not quite as odd: the win by the Bucs came with a team captained by Tom Brady. Tampa is 10-3 at home with Brady, but it hasn’t played there since smoking the Bears, 38-3, on Oct. 24. That’s a long time to be away from home, and primetime Brady coming off back-to-back losses is more than a little scary. It’s just a massive window for the Giants to backdoor (think Philly on “TNF” in Week 6) and the Buccaneers simply aren’t healthy. Can’t make this any kind of bet without knowing about Chris Godwin or Antonio Brown. A fully weaponized Brady might change my mind, but for now give me the G Men.

The Pick: Buccaneers 28, Giants 21

Props, Best Bets: TBD

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