Week 13 NFL Picks Against the Spread (Hanson)
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Here are my Week 13 NFL picks against the spread:
Chicago Bears -1 (over Minnesota Vikings)
My biggest concern about picking the Bears this week is their inability to stop the run and the fact that they are facing Adrian Peterson, last year's Most Valuable Player. Since Week 6, the Bears have allowed a 100-yard rusher every week except for Week 9 (Alfred Morris, 95 yards).
That said, the Bears have a much more balanced offense than do the Vikings. Only three running backs have more yards from scrimmage than Matt Forte (1,265) this season and the Bears have two receivers on pace for at least 1,250 yards: Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery.
[Related: Jeffery is a bargain in Week 13 FanDuel leagues; see more bargains here.]
And as bad as the Bears defense has been recently, the Vikings rank last in the NFL in scoring defense (31.5 points per game allowed) and 30th in total defense (401.0 yards per game allowed).
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +7 (over Carolina Panthers)
The Panthers are one of the hottest teams in the NFL as they have put together a seven-game winning streak including a Week 8 beatdown of the Bucs.
Since that beatdown by the Panthers, however, the Bucs have been a different team. They went on the road, and although they lost in overtime by a field goal, they nearly pulled off an upset over the Seahawks, who have never lost a home game in Russell Wilson's career. After that game, the Bucs have put together their own winning streak, which currently stands at three games.
Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has played extremely well with 15 touchdowns (11 passing and four rushing) and only four interceptions during the team's winning streak, but Bucs rookie quarterback Mike Glennon has been playing well in his own right. Glennon has a 12:2 TD-to-INT ratio since the team's bye.
While I expect the Panthers to extend their winning streak to eight, I expect the Bucs to keep this game competitive and to cover the spread.
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Cincinnati Bengals +1 (over San Diego Chargers)
One of four teams coming off their bye, the Bengals head to the west coast to face the Chargers this week.
In his six games before the team's bye, Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton threw multiple touchdown passes in five of those games for a total of 16 touchdown passes. On the flip side, he has been turnover prone recently with eight interceptions in his past three games.
Therefore, it's good news for Dalton that only four teams have allowed more passing yards per game and only two teams have fewer interceptions than the Bolts this season.
Before getting shut down by cornerback Joe Haden, A.J. Green had five consecutive 100-yard games and I expect him to get back on track with a dominant performance in Week 13. And provided he limits the turnovers, Dalton and the Bengals should win this game rather easily.
Five of our contributors make three weekly picks ATS every week and they will be posted here.