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NFL Pro Football 2013 Week 17 Picks

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Fearless Rick's NFL Week 17 Picks - Early Games

Welcome to the very best in winning NFL and College Football picks.
Rick Gagliano | December 29, 2013

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

Sunday, December 29

Editor's Note: We're going to dispense with most of the playoff and seeding potentialities because they're simply too complex and likely won't have a huge impact on most games. Teams need to win, period, and our predictions are based largely on that premise.

Carolina Panthers (-5 1/2, 45) at Atlanta Falcons, 1:00 pm - The Falcons have been exposed as a team with extreme sickness this season. The loss of just one player - Julio Jones - affected the entire team negatively and that shows a serious lack of depth.

Carolina has already clinched a playoff spot and a win only enhances their post-season possibilities. The Panthers already have a 34-10 win (November 3) over the Falcons in hand, and playing on the road will probably be a relief.

Expect the Falcons to completely fold up their tent in the second half.

Prediction: Panthers 30 Falcons 14


Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals (-6, 44 1/2), 1:00 pm - The Bengals have already clinched the AFC North and could probably care less about this game, though keeping the Ravens out of the playoffs could be on their minds.

However, Baltimore had its chance in New England last week and fell far short in a blistering, 41-7, defeat. The Ravens' season was short-circuited when they lost five of seven mid-season, including losses to the Bills, Steelers and Browns.

Baltimore, the reigning champions, have lost their mojo, which means, "you got to go, Joe." Bengals lost to them 20-17 in OT in Baltimore back in November; this will be sweet revenge in Cincy.

Prediction: Bengals 27 Ravens 17


Jacksonville Jaguars at Indianapolis Colts (-11 1/2, 45), 1:00 pm - The Colts already have the AFC South title in hand and have won their last two. Jacksonville is pretty bad, at 4-11, and they lost at home to the Colts, 37-3, back in late September.

Sure, Jacksonville is probably a little better than they were earlier in the year, but so are the Colts. There are better plays this week than having to put up a huge spread on the favorite here, so just for the heck of it, take the Jags.

Prediction: Colts 30 Jaguars 24


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New York Jets at Miami Dolphins (-5 1/2, 51), 1:00 pm - The Dolphins would already be in the playoffs if they had won in Buffalo last week. Instead, the Bills stuffed them with a 19-0 defeat, so Miami can only blame themselves for their current position.

The Jets just plain suck and they're 1-6 on the road. Miami's already dumped them, 23-3, on December 1, in NY, so expect a similar result. Jets' players will probably be spending their on-field time trying not to get hurt.

Prediction: Dolphins 28 Jets 10


Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings (-3, 51 1/2), 1:00 pm - Wow! The Vikings home favorites in what could be the worst game of the day!

Thanks to three straight losses, the 7-8 Lions now have no chance to make the playoffs, despite being only one game behind the Bears in the NFC North. That's because 7-7-1 Green Bay plays at 8-7 Chicago later in the day. Just for the fun of it, since there's nothing to gain, Matthew Stafford will probably set a few franchise passing records.

Why not? He threw for 357 yards in Detroit's 34-24 week 1 win over the Vikings, so a similar performance should be in the cards. How coudl the Lions possibly lose to the Giants last week? Well, back to the drawing board, guys. See you in 2014.

Prediction: Lions 40 Vikings 20


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Washington Redskins at New York Giants (-4, 45 1/2), 1:00 pm - Does anybody really care? A NY win will make the Giants 7-9 and extend the Washington losing streak to eight games. Both teams are a disgrace to the league and a tie would be the most suitable result.

Prediction: Redskins 20 Giants 20


Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-7, 44), 1:00 pm - It is nearly inconceivable that the 7-8 Steelers actually could make the playoffs with a win here, though that would involve Baltimore, Miami and San Diego all losing.

Pittsburgh already hammered the Browns, 27-11, back in week 12, and, the Browns haven't won in Pittsburgh since 1847 or something like that. As far as almost nobody wanting to see this Pittsburgh team in the playoffs - remember, they started out the season 0-4 - that wish will probably come true, though the Steelers will crush the hopeless Browns.

How much are the Browns paying GM Mike Holmgren for the 4-11 record? Whatever it is, it's waaaaaaaay too much!

Prediction: Steelers 31 Browns 18


Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans (-7, 43 1/2), 1:00 pm - If you're fortunate enough to be receiving this game in your local viewing area, maybe it's time to find another way to spend Sunday afternoons or maybe move somewhere else.

Neither team has had any chance at the playoffs since about mid-season, and this is a chance for the Texans to end their 13-game skid.

The last team the Texans beat was - ta-da! - the Titans, back in week two, 30-24 in OT. History doesn't always repeat, but it often rhymes. Texans win!

Prediction: Texans 24 Titans 20

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2013, 2014, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.

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