As the results from Week 15 entered the books, half of the teams that will make an appearance in the playoffs were decided. The Seahawks, Packers, Cardinals and the yet-undefeated Carolina Panthers have secured their berths in the NFC. In the AFC, the Bengals and the Patriots are headed to the postseason, although both teams have been hobbled by major injuries to key players.
Week 16 is now upon us, and by it’s end we should have a much clearer picture of the 2015/16 NFL playoffs.
Thursday Night Football
Point Spread: Oakland -5.5
The Raiders may be out of the playoff picture after a tough loss to the Packers last Sunday, but a win against the Chargers could help build momentum for a young Oakland team trying to find consistency.
Pick against the spread: Raiders -5.5
Boxing Day Football
Point Spread: Philadelphia -3
A team from the NFC East is going to make the playoffs whether we like it or not. The Eagles will be firmly in the driver’s seat with a win against Washington this week.
Pick against the spread: Eagles -3
NFL Football Sunday
Point Spread: Tampa Bay -3
With Jameis Winston in the running for offensive rookie of the year honors, he’ll look to gift the Bears a reserved spot at the bottom of the NFC North for the holidays.
Pick against the spread: Bucs -3
Point Spread: Kansas City -12.5
Kansas City has a firm hold on the first AFC Wild Card spot. A win against Cleveland this week puts them in prime position to make just their third playoff appearance in the last 10 years. They’ve had a hot streak at the right time which should enable them to cover the spread.
Pick against the spread: Chiefs -12.5
Point Spread: Buffalo -6
Buffalo won’t be making a post-season appearance in Rex Ryan’s first year as head coach, but they should have no problem taking care of the Dallas Cowboys. You know things in Dallas aren’t good when Kellen Moore is named the fourth starting quarterback of the season.
Pick against the spread: Bills -6
Point Spread: New England -3
Earlier in the season, the Jets gave the Patriots quite the scare, but New England managed to come away with the win. They’ll still win in their second match up of the season, but New York won’t go down without a fight.
Pick against the spread: Jets +3
Point Spread: Pittsburgh -10.5
I don’t know what’s worse, the yellow pants the Ravens wore last week, or how badly the Steelers are going to beat them this week.
Pick against the spread: Steelers -10.5
Point Spread: Arizona -4.5
Don’t count on Green Bay’s offense to come to life against the Cardinals, despite safety Tyrann Mathieu‘s torn ACL. Carson Palmer is going to carve this Packer defense up.
Pick against the spread: Cardinals -4.5
Point Spread: Seattle -13
Super Bowl hangover? The Seahawks are getting hot at just the right time. St. Louis finds themselves playing Seattle when they look unstoppable, but the Rams always play the Seahawks tough, making the spread a bit much for a divisional rival.
Pick against the spread: Rams +13
Monday Night Football
Point Spread: Denver -3.5
Two back up quarterbacks trying to fill big shoes, but one has a better mentor. Brock Osweiler should turn in another solid performance and squeek by with a tough prime time win against the Bengals.
Pick against the spread: Bengals +3.5