What an absolutely crazy Sunday of NFL action we saw in Week 10. Detroit winning a road game against Green Bay for the first time since 1991? Yeah, didn't see that coming. Chicago going to St. Louis and pounding the Rams? Huh. Kansas City dominating the Broncos in Denver -- with Peyton Manning getting pulled from the same game where he set the NFL career passing yardage record? Shocker. Even unbeaten New England was very fortunate to escape the New York Giants' upset bid. I'm writing this before the Monday night game between Houston and Cincinnati and now wouldn't be at all surprised if the Texans pull the upset with all we saw Sunday (and don't even get me started with the big upset in the Ronda Rousey MMA fight).
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As for those Patriots, they clinched a 15th straight season with a winning record, only the fifth franchise to do that. The record is 20 in a row by the Dallas Cowboys from 1966-85. The Patriots managed to score in all four quarters against the Giants and have now amazingly scored points in 35 straight quarters, an NFL record. The previous mark was 31 straight by Manning's Colts in 2005 and the Kurt Warner 1999-2000 Rams.
We also saw history in Oakland as Adrian Peterson probably all but clinched the NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award with 203 yards rushing in a win over the Raiders. That was Peterson's sixth career 200-yard rushing game, tying O.J. Simpson for the most 200-yard rushing games in NFL history.
Here are some Week 11 games and opening lines that caught my eye. As usual, I won't touch on the Thursday night game, my Sunday featured game (most likely Packers-Vikings) or the Monday nighter.
Bucs at Eagles (-7, 45.5): I really thought Philadelphia would beat Miami in Week 10, but the Eagles were among those teams upset at home, 20-19. And to make matters worse, starting quarterback Sam Bradford suffered both a separated shoulder and concussion in the loss. Some reports have him missing the next two games because after this one against Tampa, the Eagles have a quick turnaround for a Thanksgiving matchup. Did you really think the injury-prone Bradford would play all 16 regular-season games? Mark Sanchez, who replaced Bradford on Sunday and threw a devastating red-zone interception, will start. Tampa Bay won for the third time in five games Sunday in beating Dallas 10-6. Jameis Winston scored on a 1-yard keeper in the final minute after a defensive holding call wiped out his fumble at the goal line. The Bucs won for the first time since 2005 when scoring 10 points or fewer. Key trend: Philly is 4-6 ATS in past 10 as home favorite of at least 7 points. The pick: Eagles and "under."
Broncos at Bears (+2, 43): This is a pick'em at 5Dimes, and I think you might even see the Bears favored by kickoff because Chicago is playing much better of late and Denver won't have Manning. He was benched in Sunday's loss to the Chiefs after throwing four interceptions (just 5-for-20 for 35 yards as well) and now it has been revealed that Manning is dealing with an issue to the plantar fascia in his foot. He won't practice this week and will be inactive against Chicago. Manning, 39, had never missed a game in the middle of a season because of injury. Your starter here will be Brock Osweiler, who will be backed up by rookie Trevor Siemian. If anyone has a good idea on how to gameplan for Osweiler it would be Bears head coach John Fox and offensive coordinator Adam Gase. Of course, those two came from Denver this offseason. Gase has worked wonders with Jay Cutler, who is having his best season as a Bear. So some team is going to hire Gase as a head coach this offseason. Osweiler closed out the Kansas City loss for Manning and was 14-for-24 for 146 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Osweiler has never taken a first-quarter snap in any game of his NFL career. Key trend: Chicago is 2-8 ATS in past 10 as home dog. The pick: Bears and under.
Colts at Falcons (-6, 47.5): Indianapolis, off its bye week, begins life without Andrew Luck as he's expected to miss a month with a lacerated kidney and another abdominal injury. Veteran Matt Hasselbeck will make his third start this season. He beat the Jaguars and Texans in early October and didn't turn the ball over in either. Hasselbeck is now backed up by Charlie Whitehurst. Atlanta's offense has gone into a major funk as the Falcons haven't topped 20 points in their past three games and have dropped two straight. Turnovers an ineffectiveness in the red zone have been the culprits. Running back Devonta Freeman has come back to earth and failed to record a rushing TD the past three games. Atlanta is also off its bye week. Key trend: Atlanta 4-6 ATS in past 10 as home favorite of at least 6 points. The pick: Falcons and over.
49res at Seahawks (-12, 41): San Francisco is off its bye week; the Niners beat the Falcons 17-16 in Week 9 behind a decent performance from recently-promoted QB Blaine Gabbert. He completed 15-for-25 for 185 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Gabbert didn't have his top running back and wide receiver, Carlos Hyde and Anquan Boldin, respectively, due to injuries. Coach Jim Tomsula has said Gabbert would start this week again over Colin Kaepernick but wouldn't commit to anything longer term than that. Probably wise to go with Gabbert here as Kaepernick has really struggled vs. Seattle. He is 1-6 in seven career starts against the Seahawks with three TD passes, nine picks and 24 sacks. The Niners lost to the Seahawks 20-3 in Week 7. Kaepernick had only 124 yards passing and was sacked six times. The Niners had 142 total yards, their worst total since 133 yards against the Vikings on Nov. 5, 2006. It's about panic time for Seattle, which lost 39-32 at home to Arizona on Sunday to fall to 4-5 and all but hand the NFC West to the Cardinals. The 39 points were the most allowed by Seattle since giving up 40 to San Francisco in Week 14 of the 2010 season. Key trend: Seattle 5-5 ATS in past 10 as favorite in series (any location). The pick: Seahawks and under.
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