I'm not sure if you guys have noticed, but every time you think the 2022 NFL season can't get any crazier, it somehow gets crazier. I've watched the Vikings-Bills game at least 13 times since Sunday and I still haven't been able to comprehend all the craziness that happened.
To be honest, I could probably spend 41 paragraphs talking about everything that happened in that game, but if I did that, then we'd never get to my Week 11 picks and if we never get to my Week 11 picks, then you guys won't be able to make fun of me for all the bad picks I make this week and we don't want that, so let's get to the picks.
Actually, before we get to the Week 11 picks, here's a quick reminder that you can check out the weekly picks from every CBSSports.com NFL expert by clicking here. In completely unrelated news, I'm in charge of the NFL newsletter here at CBSSports.com, which I'm only telling you about because it's the perfect gift for the holidays. If you want to buy someone a gift, but you don't actually want to spend money on them, just subscribe them to the newsletter. It's the gift that keeps on giving. All you have to do is click here and enter their email address.
Since I'm now running the newsletter, you might be thinking that I'll be way too busy to podcast, but nope. If there are two things I'm never too busy for, it's podcasting and listening to Taylor Swift songs.
Will Brinson and Ryan Wilson won't listen to Taylor Swift with me, but they do join me three days per week (Monday, Tuesday and Friday) on the Pick Six podcast, which is our daily NFL podcast here at CBSSports.com. Brinson and I actually made some early best bets for Week 11 and you can listen to those below.
That being said, if you don't want to listen to the podcast because you'd prefer to listen to Taylor Swift, I completely understand. And if you want to me stop babbling about both Taylor Swift and podcasts so we can get to the picks, I also understand that.
Alright, let's get to the picks.
NFL Week 11 picks
Tennessee (6-3) at Green Bay (4-6)
8:15 p.m. ET, Thursday (Amazon Prime)
The Packers are currently favored to beat the Titans and I'm guessing that has everything to do with the fact that this game is being played in arctic weather. If you want to stay warm on Thursday night, just spike some hot chocolate and take a drink every time someone mentions the "frozen tundra" of Lambeau Field, which will almost certainly happen multiple times, considering the kickoff temperature is projected to be roughly 25 degrees.
Normal people can't function when it's 25 degrees, but as we all know, Aaron Rodgers is not normal. The Packers QB seems to be at his best when it's cold out and if you need proof, just consider this: Rodgers is 10-1 in his last 11 starts where it's been under 35 degrees and that includes the Packers' Week 10 win over the Cowboys.
Also, I should probably mention that the Packers have outscored their opponents by an average of more than two touchdowns per game in those 10 wins (29 to 14.8). No one wants to be playing in cold weather, except for the Packers, who seem to thrive in it.
The one big problem for the Packers is that they only have three days to prepare for this game and the only way to properly prepare for Derrick Henry in that amount of time is to spend all of practice trying to tackle snowmobiles that are moving toward you at full speed, which I don't think the Packers are even actually allowed to do at practice. Henry is currently second in the NFL in rushing, which isn't good news for a Packers team that is just one of seven teams in the league that's surrendering more than 140 yards per game on the ground this year.
I hate picking against Green Bay on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field, but I think I have to do it here. The Packers are coming off an emotional win over Mike McCarthy, they have the Eagles next week and I feel like there could be a small letdown here. Also, everyone is sleeping on the Titans right now, but not me, because I don't sleep.
The pick: Titans 20-17 over Packers
N.Y. Jets (6-3) at New England (5-4)
1 p.m. ET (CBS)
My picks were so bad last week that someone told me I should start flipping a coin to make my predictions from now on and I'm beginning to think that might not be a bad idea. Someone is already using that strategy this season and they're on a roll. Back in August, someone on Twitter decided to simulate the Jets' entire season by picking every game with a coin flip and so far, the coin has gone 9-0 WITH ITS PREDICTIONS.
The coin is undefeated.
On the other hand, the Jets have literally been my worst team this season when it comes to picks. The coin is perfect on the year picking their games while I'm 3-6.
To be honest though, I don't trust the coin. The coin had no business picking the Jets to beat the Dolphins in Week 5, but it did and it ended up being right. The coin was out of its mind to take the Jets over the Bills in Week 9, but it went with New York and it nailed the pick.
This week, the coin is rolling with the Patriots and considering the coin is much better at picking Jets games than I am, I have no choice but to defer to the coin. That being said, I was going to pick the Patriots anyway.
New England has won THIRTEEN STRAIGHT in this series, including a game back in Week 8 where Zach Wilson threw three interceptions in a 22-17 Jets loss. Wilson might double that total this week and that's because young quarterbacks almost always get eaten alive when they play against Bill Belichick's defense in New England.
Since the start of the 2001 season, Belichick is 53-5 in home games where the other team is starting a first or second-year QB. In this case, that QB is Wilson, who is 0-3 all-time against the Patriots with seven interceptions and a QB rating of 50.5.
The coin is clearly aware of all this information, which is definitely why it's taking the Patriots to win and so am I.
The pick: Patriots 23-20 over Jets
Las Vegas (2-7) at Denver (3-6)
4:05 p.m. ET (Fox)
If you like drama, and who doesn't, then this should be your favorite game of Week 11. This game has so many subplots, it's basically the football version of Pulp Fiction, which is actually very fitting, because the only thing more depressing than that movie is the season that both these teams are having.
The Raiders and Broncos actually have a lot in common: They both made a huge trade over the offseason (Russell Wilson and Davante Adams), they both hired a new coach, they both had high expectations for 2022 and they're now both choking away the entire season.
I'm not sure who's having the worst year, but I'll go ahead and say it's the Raiders after what happened to them against Indianapolis: The Colts fired their coach six days before playing the Raiders, they didn't know who was going to call plays until five days before the game and they didn't know who was going to start at QB until 24 hours before the game. Based on that, the Colts probably should have lost by three touchdowns, but instead, they beat the Raiders and Josh McDaniels got out-coached by a guy who was coaching high school football two weeks ago.
You know you've reached a low point when your starting quarterback is holding back tears after the game.
Of course, I can't really judge Carr there because I make those same faces while trying to hold back tears any time I watch Love Actually.
As for the Broncos, their season has been just as big of a disaster. As a matter of fact, at this point, I don't even know who's been worse out of Josh McDaniels and Nathaniel Hackett. I want to say McDaniels, but he beat Hackett back in Week 4, so I feel like that has to count for something.
The Broncos are the greatest paradox in the history of the NFL: They have arguably the best defense in the league, but they also have the worst offense. They're the Schrodinger's cat of NFL teams. I can't tell if they're alive or dead. The Broncos have given up the fewest points in the NFL this year, but they've also scored the fewest points, which makes them the first team since 1946 to hold that distinction through 10 weeks.
The Raiders offense has hit rock bottom over the past few weeks, so I have a tough time seeing them scoring points against Denver, but I also have a tough time seeing the Broncos score points because they can't score against anyone. I mean, if the Broncos offense was just somewhat competent, this team would be leading the AFC West.
If the Broncos had scored exactly 18 points in regulation of every game, they would be 8-1.— RK (@RyanKoenigsberg) November 14, 2022
As for my pick, this definitely feels like a game where I should flip a coin, but we already did that with the Jets-Patriots game, so I'm just going to have to trust my gut here.
The pick: Broncos 19-16 over Raiders
Dallas (6-3) at Minnesota (8-1)
4:25 p.m. ET (CBS)
I've watched enough Vikings games this year to know exactly how this game is going to play out, and that's because nearly every game goes the exact same way for Minnesota: They jump out to an early lead only to blow the lead, but then they get the lead back before blowing it again before finally winning.
Every game is a roller coaster ride of anxiety for Vikings fans. Last year, that roller coaster ride usually ended in a crash -- the Vikings lost eight one-score games in 2021 -- but this year, it's been completely different. Not only are the Vikings currently on a seven-game winning streak, but they've won all seven of those games by one score, which is tied for the most consecutive one-score wins in NFL history.
One reason the Vikings are winning is because of Justin Jefferson. If the Cowboys have watched any film on Jefferson this year, then they already know that you can't stop him, so you shouldn't even bother trying. Jefferson currently leads the NFL in receiving yards per game this year and he's doing it because he regularly makes insane catches like the one below.
Even Neil DeGrasse Tyson would probably agree the catch above breaks every known law of physics. It shouldn't be possible.
Jefferson is so good that the Cowboys are going to have to do whatever they can to make sure he doesn't beat them, WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT THE VIKINGS WANT. If the Cowboys are focused on Jefferson, that will open the door for Dalvin Cook to have a huge game and a huge game could definitely happen since he'll be going up against a Cowboys defense that has struggled to stop the run this year.
Although the Cowboys have surrendered the fourth-fewest passing yards in the NFL this season, the tradeoff is that they've given up the fourth-most rushing yards at 143.1 yards per game. If the Vikings are smart, Cook will be carrying the ball a lot on Sunday, and if for some reason that doesn't work, Kirk Cousins can always just throw it up to Jefferson because that never seems to fail.
The pick: Vikings 27-24 over Cowboys
Curse of the Panthers picks
The curse of the Panthers will be coming after both the Bengals and Falcons this week. If you're not familiar with the curse of the Panthers, it's pretty simple: Every team Carolina has played this season has gone on to lose its next game after playing the Panthers. It doesn't matter what happens when a team plays the Panthers, this only impacts the game after it.
Let's take a quick look at the streak:
- Panthers Week 1 opponent: Browns (Cleveland loses 31-30 to the Jets in Week 2)
- Panthers Week 2 opponent: Giants (New York loses 23-16 to the Cowboys in Week 3)
- Panthers Week 3 opponent: Saints (New Orleans loses 28-25 to the Vikings in Week 4)
- Panthers Week 4 opponent: Cardinals (Arizona loses 20-17 to the Eagles in Week 5)
- Panthers Week 5 opponent: 49ers (San Francisco loses 28-14 to the Falcons in Week 6)
- Panthers Week 6 opponent: Rams (L.A. got a bye in Week 7 and then lost to the 49ers in Week 8)
- Panthers Week 7 opponent: Buccaneers (Tampa Bay loses 27-22 to the Ravens in Week 8)
- Panthers Week 8 opponent: Falcons (Atlanta loses 20-17 to the Chargers in Week 9)
- Panthers Week 9 opponent: Bengals (Bye in Week 10, TBA in Week 11)
- Panthers Week 10 opponent: Falcons (TBA in Week 11)
That's eight teams, and they've gone 0-8 after facing the Panthers. Now, it will be up to the Bengals or Falcons to end the curse.
Chicago (3-7) at Atlanta (4-6)
1 p.m. ET (Fox)
The Falcons have the unenviable task this week of trying to stop the hottest quarterback in the NFL. Over the past two weeks, Justin Fields has put together two of the top-eight single-game QB rushing totals in NFL history with 178 yard in Week 9 and 147 in Week 10. In Week 9, he came the first player in NFL history to have two or more rushing touchdowns, two or more passing touchdowns and 100 or more rushing yards in the same game. If the Falcons were good at playing defense, I would feel comfortable picking them here, but they're not. Atlanta has surrendered 399.5 yards per game this season, which is the second-worst total in the NFL (Only the Lions are worse and we saw what Fields did to the Lions).
This game is at 1 p.m. ET and when it ends around 4 p.m., I'm going go ahead and predict that the curse will gets its ninth victim.
The pick: Bears 34-27 over Falcons
Cincinnati (5-4) at Pittsburgh (3-6)
4:25 p.m ET (CBS)
If the curse takes down the Falcons, there's no reason to think that it can't also take down the Bengals and that's because the Steelers are absolutely capable of pulling off the upset here. For one, the Steelers defense is 10 times better when T.J. Watt is on the field and he'll be on the field against the Bengals. Watt has only played in two games this year and the Steelers are 2-0 in those games. Watt was on the field in Week 1 in Cincinnati and he was a big reason why the Steelers were able to upset the Bengals 23-20. Also, let's not forget, the Bengals still won't have Ja'Marr Chase and then there's the small fact that the Bengals almost never win in Pittsburgh (The Steelers have won five of their past six home games against them).
I'm taking the Bengals here, but I don't feel good about it, because for all I know, the curse might come after me if I get this pick wrong and let me just say, the last thing I need in life right now is to be dealing with a curse. I live with a toddler so I'm already dealing with enough.
The pick: Bengals 27-20 over Steelers
NFL Week 11 picks: All the rest
Best pick: Last week, I predicted the Steelers would upset the Saints in Pittsburgh and guess what happened? The Steelers upset the Saints in Pittsburgh. Now, did I know that Andy Dalton was going to have a total meltdown in this game? Of course I did. If there's one time you can count on Andy Dalton to have a meltdown, it's when he's facing the Steelers. Over the course of his career, he's faced the Steelers 17 times and not only has he gone 3-14 in those games, but he's thrown a total of 16 interceptions.
If Andy Dalton is playing the Steelers, then you should automatically be picking the Steelers to win. Don't even think twice about it.
Death taxes and Andy dalton sucking against the Steelers— deport matt canada (@aliciadawnnnnn) November 13, 2022
That about sums it up.
Worst pick: I don't even know where to start here because Week 10 turned into a total disaster for me. I missed so many picks that I'm not even sure which one was my worst. Oh wait, yes I do, it was the one where I picked the team with the worst offense in the NFL (Denver) to win. The Broncos are a bad football team and for some reason, I keep picking them to win. This is like the time I had broccoli for dinner every day for an entire week even though I hate broccoli. Like, I'm allowed to have other things for dinner, why didn't I just eat something else? It makes no sense, just like the fact that I continue to pick the Broncos to win.
Finally, if you guys have ever wondered which teams I'm actually good at picking, here's a quick look at my best and worst teams when it comes to picks this year.
Teams I'm 8-1 picking this year (Straight up): Chiefs.
Longest winning streak: Chiefs (Six straight games picked correctly)
Teams I've been the worst at picking this year (Straight up): Jets (3-6), Raiders (3-6).
Longest losing streak: Raiders (Three straight games picked incorrectly)
Every other team is somewhere in the middle.
Straight up in Week 9: 5-9 (Ouch)
SU overall: 87-62-1
Against the spread in Week 9: 5-9 (Yikes)
ATS overall: 68-76-6