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Nick's Picks Week 11: Patriots and Panthers stay perfect

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Week 10 is all done and, to be honest, there quite a few upsets and shocking performances - with 11 wins for the apparent underdogs. 11 upsets! Who saw that coming? 

Green Bay sure didn't. Then again, neither did Detroit.

But that was Week 10 and this is Week 11; so here are the picks:


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Tennessee Titans @ Jacksonville Jaguars

Two terrible teams in the last few years trying to turn themselves around face-off in Thursday Night Football, and the Jags look set to take this one.

Mariota will have a strong game, but Bortles will take Jacksonville to the win and potentially the playoffs as the top team in the AFC South if the Texans and Colts lose. This is last year's NFC South...terrible.

Winner: Jags (Correct)

Bortles had one of his best performances of the season, helping the Jaguars to a 19-13 victory.

Oakland Raiders @ Detroit Lions

Is it another missed playoff opportunity for the Raiders? They've lost two in a row and have, for the time being, dropped back in the race for a wildcard spot.

They were beaten by Minnesota Vikings' Adrian Peterson last week, simple as that.

The Lions won a momentous, and completely unexpected, game at Green Bay last week for the first time in 21 years.

But they're still a bad team and one win won't change that.

Winner: Raiders - but don't be surprised if they come from behind

Indianapolis Colts @ Atlanta Falcons

Three losses in four games has taken the shine off the Falcons and their 5-0 start with talk saying this is the real Atlanta.

The Colts came off a big win against the Broncos before their bye-week with news that their star QB, Andrew Luck, is out for the season with a lacerated kidney so Matt Hasselbeck starts.

A stronger offence and a push for the play-offs with a healthy team from extra practice thanks to their own bye-week.

Winner: Falcons, but not by much

St Louis Rams @ Baltimore Ravens

This could be a close game as even though the Rams have explosive receivers and strong lines on both sides of the ball, Nick Foles has been benched in favour of Case Keenum.

It all depends on Keenum.

The Ravens has had all sorts of problems like penalties and luck - see last week.

Flacco and the Ravens should turn it around this week at home.

Winner: Ravens

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Philadelphia Eagles

Chip Kelly's Eagles are a hot and cold team, a Jekyll & Hyde team - one week good, one week terrible.

So, who the hell knows which one will turn up this week. Plus, quelle surprise, Sam Bradford is hurt and out. This means one thing; Mark Sanchez starts! 

This really is a toss-up of a game with the Bucs, led by Famous Jameis, steadily improving facing-off against Mark Sanchez. Mark Sanchez!

Winner: Home field advantage may count, but so might a Sanchez pick-six - Bucs

Denver Broncos @ Chicago Bears

The Broncos were crushed last week by the Chiefs in a blowout after Peyton Manning made history before falling apart with four interceptions.

Peyton was benched and now misses the game through injury leaving Brock Osweiler as the starter.

A great defence, maybe, but a first start for Osweiler against the Bears - and John Fox's return to Denver - is no easy game.

Chicago have a good team and Fox is out for revenge. 

Winner: Bears - would you call this an upset? maybe

New York Jets @ Houston Texans

A great 4-1 start has become 5-4 as the Jets, like their MetLife Stadium rivals, the Giants, cannot close out a game - last week versus the Bills is an example. This has lead to criticism of head coach, Todd Bowles, as their play-off hopes begin to fade.

The Texans, somehow joint top in the AFC South, got the upset over the Bengals last week but are without Arian Foster and starting QB, Brian Hoyer.

Winner: Jets

Washington @ Carolina Panthers

To be honest, who saw Kirk Cousins beating Drew Brees in a quaterback duel or Washington beating the Saints all together?

It was one the many upsets last week, but this week DC will return to the norm - they'll lose. And Kirk Cousins will not like that.

The Panthers are looking formidable at the moment with Cam Newton a frontrunner for MVP.

Carolina should take this game without too much trouble before starting a daunting stretch to close out the regular season that features just two home games.

Winner: Panthers

Dallas Cowboys @ Miami Dolphins

Dallas play their second game in Florida in a row following their loss to Tampa but this week will be different - Romo returns.

Without him, the Cowboys have been largely woeful with a seven-game losing streak but this is also down to the fact they no longer have DeMarco - but we'll gloss over that.

Romo will be rusty and the Dolphins should be able to slow him down.

Without Romo, "America's team" are nobody but his return won't solve everything.

Winner: Dolphins

Kansas City Chiefs @ San Diego Chargers 

This is a strange one, Kansas could take it reasonably straight forward or they could squeeze by. Likewise, the Charges could just edge it.

The Chiefs' defence has started firing after stopping the Broncos last week to record three-straight wins and into the race for a wildcard spot in the AFC.

The Chargers have dropped five games in a row and have injuries on both sides of the ball - not good.

Winner: Chiefs

Green Bay Packers @ Minnesota Vikings

The game of the week. A tasty, tasty match-up in the NFC North as the Vikings look to assert their lead in the division and open up a two-game gap to Green Bay who want to snap their losing streak and return to top spot.

This is the big step for the Vikings to extend their lead and have a coming-out party to show everyone what they can do and why they are primed for the play-offs and to knock Pack off their perch.

There's no reason why they can't - their defence is good and the Packers offence is poor but with a Hall of Fame QB.

Winner: I don't know why, but I fancy Packers to snap their streak and spoil the party 

San Francisco 49ers @ Seattle Seahawks

Three games back from the leading Cardinals, it's been a reality check for the Seahawks, their fans and the bandwagoners this year.

They are in real danger of missing out on the play-offs.

The 49ers have witnessed a massive fall from grace and are just a complete mess. Blaine Gabbert starts and will probably suck.

This could be a brutal beating.

Winner: Seahawks

Cincinnati Bengals @ Arizona Cardinals

A prime-time game, a night game (uh oh for Dalton), between two of the league's top teams who had very a different Week 10.

The Cardinals won their huge game against the Seahawks and have the momentum and, despite their records, are the best team in the NFC. If they played the Panthers today, Arizona would take it.

The Bengals spluttered against the Texans and the Red Rifle's aim was off, his muzzle was muffled and he lacked caliber in another loss under the lights.

Winner: Cardinals

Buffalo Bills @ New England Patriots

In another showdown with the Giants, Big Blue proved the Pats are beatable and only lost to poor clock management - again - in what has been called the game of the season.

The Pats are unlikely to face any trouble from another New York as Rex Ryan's Bills won't have enough to bother the New England defence.

The Pats blew away the Bills earlier this season with a passing masterclass but are now without Julian Edelman.

Rex Ryan is obsessively focused on the Pats and how to beat them, but it won't happen and the Bills will slip to 5-5.

Winner: Patriots

Carolina Panthers
Buffalo Bills
Green Bay Packers
Atlanta Falcons
San Diego Chargers
Indianapolis Colts
Seattle Seahawks
Washington Redskins
Houston Texans
Miami Dolphins
Philadelphia Eagles
Arizona Cardinals
Minnesota Vikings
Chicago Bears
Dallas Cowboys
Kansas City Chiefs
Oakland Raiders
Tennessee Titans
Baltimore Ravens
New England Patriots
New York Jets
Cincinnati Bengals
Detroit Lions
Jacksonville Jaguars
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Denver Broncos
San Francisco 49ers
Los Angeles Rams

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