Texans, Pats & Tebow: This Weekend's Best Bets, NFL Edition

tebow122911.jpg
God, let these picks come through.
Witness the go-to move for a blog contributor who is technically on vacation but still likes to keep his commitment of five posts a week to his freelance employer because he loves them and loves money.

Not one, but TWO posts worth of football predictions!

Today, you get my NFL picks; yesterday I dropped six bowl picks on you. And before you call me lazy (or ugly or disrespectful, for that matter), bear witness to my 56-38-1 record so far this year.

All I'm doing is giving you MORE GIFTS, people! You're welcome!

Now onto the NFL picks for the ultra-meaningful Week 17:

TEXANS +3 over Titans
The Texans are locked into the number-three seed in the AFC, but for a team that mathematically has nothing to play for, the Texans have a bunch of issues they need to work out in the regular season's final week. The two biggest items on the list? First, getting rookie quarterback T.J. Yates some confidence heading into the postseason. Clearly, he's going to be the guy. Second, and hand in hand with Yates's aforementioned confidence, they need to get some reps for Andre Johnson and get him into game shape quickly for the playoffs. The one spell where the offense moved most smoothly with Yates was the half that he played with Johnson in the lineup against Atlanta.

PATRIOTS -12 1/2 over Bills
The Patriots can clinch homefield advantage throughout the playoffs which, given their gaping holes on defense, I think they will need to get back to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2007 season. One thing we know, the way Ryan Fitzpatrick has played since signing his big contract (13 INT's), if he hangs a number on the Patriots, then the issues in the Pats' secondary are more real than we could possibly imagine.

49ers -10 1/2 over RAMS
When Kellen Clemens was here with the Texans earlier this season (Remember the Kellen Clemens Era? It was like five hours long?), if I had known he would become such a huge boon to the Christmas wagering season, I'd have given him a hug and a fruit basket.

Ravens -2 1/2 over BENGALS
We need the Ravens to win this game for the "9-7 chaos to reign." Also, this is where the feel of the games starts to take on a postseason vibe. Both teams control their own destiny -- the Ravens take home the second seed in the AFC (and maybe the first seed) with a win, and the Bengals clinch the sixth seed with a win. Joe Flacco has played and won games with stakes on the road before, several times. The Bengals still feel like they are a year away from winning on this stage.

BRONCOS -3 over Chiefs
With Tebow as the starter, the Broncos' seven wins have been by an average of 4.8 points. Their three losses have been by an average of 26.3 points. This game feels more like one of those four-point games. I'll take the Tebow and lay the field goal.

GIANTS -3 over Cowboys
This play is based on three things: 1. Eli Manning has shown that of the two quarterbacks starting this game, he will probably screw up less and may even make a winning play, 2. The game is in MetLife Stadium, 3. It's the final game of the regular season, and if you can't wager on that, then dammit you're just not American.

Last week: 2-2-1
Season record: 56-38-1

Listen to Sean Pendergast on 1560 The Game from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. weekdays, and watch the simulcast on Comcast 129 from 6 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. Also, follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SeanCablinasian.


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