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Prisco's Picks: Week 17

 
 
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WEEK
17
PETE PRISCO
Senior NFL Columnist
Pete Prisco has covered the NFL for three decades, including working as a beat reporter in Jacksonville for the Jaguars. He hosted his own radio show for seven years, and can be seen throughout the week on CBS Sports' NFL shows. When he's not watching game tape you can find Pete on Twitter or dreaming of an Arizona State national title in football.
MATCHUP SCORE ANALYSIS
Sunday, Jan. 3, 2016
 
New Orleans
Saints
21
This could be the last Saints game for Sean Payton and Drew Brees. They will want to go out as winners if it is. The Falcons looked good last week in upsetting the Panthers, and that will carry over. Matt Ryan rips the Saints defense.
Result: Atlanta Falcons 17, New Orleans Saints 20
Atlanta
Falcons
28
 
 
New York
Jets
20
This is the Super Bowl for the Bills, who can knock the Jets out of the playoffs with a victory. The Jets are playing good football, but the looser team here will be the home team. Upset special. Rex Ryan gets one over on his former team.
Result: Buffalo Bills 22, NY Jets 17
Buffalo
Bills
21
 
 
Detroit
Lions
23
These two teams won't be in the playoffs, but they've done some good things this season. The Bears have lost a lot of close games, while the Lions have turned it around after a bad start. The Bears at home will slow down Matt Stafford and win the game.
Result: Chicago Bears 20, Detroit Lions 24
Chicago
Bears
30
 
 
Baltimore
Ravens
13
The Bengals have clinched a playoff spot but could still get a bye in the first round. So they will play hard here. The Ravens had their Super Bowl last week against the Steelers. So itís down for them. Bengals take it.
Result: Cincinnati Bengals 24, Baltimore Ravens 16
Cincinnati
Bengals
23
 
 
Pittsburgh
Steelers
33
The Steelers will rebound here after the upset loss to the Ravens. They will get the offense cranked up again against a bad Cleveland defense. Ben Roethlisberger lights them up.
Result: Pittsburgh Steelers 28, Cleveland Browns 12
Cleveland
Browns
17
 
 
Washington
Redskins
17
The Redskins have clinched the division, so they will rest guys. The Cowboys are still fighting, especially on defense. I think Dallas shows up and plays hard to beat a Washington team looking ahead to next week.
Result: Dallas Cowboys 23, Washington Redskins 34
Dallas
Cowboys
21
 
 
Jacksonville
Jaguars
21
The Texans still need to win here, so they will be focused. The Jaguars are playing consecutive road games and that's tough. Their offense is really good. The defense is awful. The Texans slow down Blake Bortles to take it.
Result: Houston Texans 30, Jacksonville Jaguars 6
Houston
Texans
30
 
 
Tennessee
Titans
16
This could be a battle of backup passers, which is never a good thing. But the game really means nothing to either team (OK, the Colts have a distant, distant chance). The Colts have been a flop, but they will fight for Chuck Pagano here.
Result: Indianapolis Colts 30, Tennessee Titans 24
Indianapolis
Colts
23
 
 
New England
Patriots
27
The Patriots need this game to lock up the top seed in the conference, so they will be focused. Miami appears to have packed it in for the season. New England is banged up on the offensive line, which has to be a concern. Even so, they will find a way.
Result: New England Patriots 10, Miami Dolphins 20
Miami
Dolphins
20
 
 
Philadelphia
Eagles
27
This could be the last game for Tom Coughlin as coach, and I expect his team to come out and play hard. The Eagles were awful losing to the Redskins last week, looking lifeless. The Giants still fight here and win it.
Result: NY Giants 30, Philadelphia Eagles 35
New York
Giants
33
 
 
Tampa Bay
Buccaneers
20
The Panthers need this game to lock up the top seed. So they will play their starters to win. That's not good news for the Bucs. After losing last week to the Falcons, the Panthers bounce back. Cam Newton has a big day.
Result: Carolina Panthers 38, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 10
Carolina
Panthers
33
 
 
Oakland
Raiders
24
The Chiefs have won nine straight games, but they've had some close ones at home. This one will be close, too. The Raiders will play hard against their rivals. Kansas City will win a tight game with a late score.
Result: Kansas City Chiefs 23, Oakland Raiders 17
Kansas City
Chiefs
28
 
 
Seattle
Seahawks
20
This game matters for the Cardinals, but not much for the Seahawks except for playoff position. Arizona can still get the top seed in the conference, so they will play hard here. You know they would love to sweep Seattle. Carson Palmer continues to roll, and they will.
Result: Arizona Cardinals 6, Seattle Seahawks 36
Arizona
Cardinals
30
 
 
San Diego
Chargers
21
The Broncos need this to clinch the division regardless of what happens with the Chiefs. San Diego is playing out the string, but with Philip Rivers as quarterback, they will be focused. Denver's on a short week and has all the pressure. The Chargers keep it tight.
Result: Denver Broncos 27, San Diego Chargers 20
Denver
Broncos
23
 
 
St. Louis
Rams
24
The Rams are playing consecutive road games after beating Seattle last week on the road. They looked dominant up front on defense in that game, and that carries over here. They get after Blaine Gabbert.
Result: St. Louis Rams 16, San Francisco 49ers 19
San Francisco
49ers
17
 
 
Minnesota
Vikings
17
This is for the division title. The Packers blew out the Vikings earlier this season in Minnesota. But the Packers haven't been playing well lately. The offense is really struggling. But I think at home Aaron Rodgers will find a way to get it cranked up. Packers take the division.
Result: Green Bay Packers 13, Minnesota Vikings 20
Green Bay
Packers
24
 
 
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