NFL picks Week 12: Predicting the Chiefs-Chargers and all other games

After falling for the first time all season, we collectively get back on the beam as winter approaches.

After losing to the Denver Broncos, it is time to regroup for both the team and the fans.

Incredibly, we are already to Week 12 of the NFL season and the Kansas City Chiefs are sitting at 9-1, looking to reach double-digit wins for only the fourth time this century. Sure would be nice, especially before Thanksgiving.

So, does our panel believe this Sunday will bring the Chiefs a 10th win?

San Diego Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs (-4.5)

Matt Verderame: Kansas City 23, San Diego 13

First of all, let me start off by saying this line is absurd. No disrespect to the Chargers (4-6), but the Chiefs (9-1) are five games better than them, at home, and San Diego has lost three straight including two to Washington and Miami. This line suggests Kansas City would be a 1.5-point favorite at a neutral site and a 1.5-point underdog at San Diego?

The Chargers are certainly a dangerous team but have perhaps the worst defense in the NFL. The question is, can the Chiefs' offense do anything? The talent is there is some spots, but at times it is literally unbearable to watch. All in all, the defense should be energized by the home crowd, and the offense has to be better than last week...right?

Clay Wendler: Chiefs 20, Chargers 17

The Chargers defense is bad enough that we will explode on offense.

Joel Thorman: Chiefs 24, Chargers 23

San Diego is a good team with a good offense so this will be a close game. Chiefs win the fourth quarter again.

Chris Thorman: Chiefs 24, Chargers 13

The Chiefs defense rebounds after the loss in Denver to hold a decent Chargers team to a single touchdown.

MNChiefsFan: Chiefs 31, Chargers 13

If the Chiefs are who I think they are (well, who I want them to be), San Diego is going to pay the price for all the chances the Chiefs left on the field last week.  The pass rush is going to be amped up and ready to redeem themselves (although as Dirk pointed out, they were getting to Manning, just too late), and the offense has to be the main point of Reid's focus now.  Alex Smith continues to take shots down the field and they finally start to pay off.

NJChiefsFan: Chiefs 24, Chargers 17

KC's defense does what it does against QBs not named Peyton and the Chargers don't get past 17 points.

Matt Conner: Chiefs 30, Chargers 10

Mr. Conner did not provide an explanation. He says his score serves as more than enough commentary.

Back to Matt Verderame for the rest of the picks, with the lines presented by Oddsshark.com:

New Orleans Saints (-10) at Atlanta Falcons

Before the season began, this game looked like a terrific primetime affair. Now, it will be like watching a steroid-using 27-year-old beat up an 8-year-old quadriplegic. New Orleans (8-2) is fighting for home-field advantage through the NFC playoffs while Atlanta (2-8) just wants to go home.

Pick: New Orleans 31, Atlanta 17

Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns (-1)

Suddenly, Pittsburgh (4-6) is back in the race for a playoff spot. The Steelers' resurgence makes this a major game, with the Browns (4-6) trying desperately to make the postseason for the first time since the Tim Couch/Kelly Holcomb era. Any Cleveland who read that sentence is now doing this.

Pick: Pittsburgh 20, Cleveland 17

New York Jets at Baltimore Ravens (-4)

New York (5-5) has been alternating wins and losses all season, but that trend stops here. Geno Smith is in the process of making Todd Marinovich look like a Hall of Famer, and that doesn't bode well against the defending champs. Baltimore (4-6) is pathetic offensively, but it will get some short fields.

Pick: Baltimore 22, New York 17

Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers (-4.5)

How does it feel Packers fans? All those years of Brett Favre and Aaron Rodgers and now you get to watch Scott Tolzien. Welcome to the life of a Chiefs fan! Seriously though, Minnesota (2-8) is a gas-fueled fire which Green Bay (5-5) could beat with Brodie Croyle quarterbacking.

Pick: Green Bay 23, Minnesota 16

Chicago Bears at St. Louis Rams (EVEN)

Another game that reminds us of classic quarterback duels featuring Joe Namath and Johnny Unitas. Whenever Kellen Clemens and Josh McCown get together, you need to abandon everything and grab a seat. Or grab the nearest fork and aim hard for the eyes. When in doubt though, take Chicago (6-4) and McCown over St. Louis (4-6), Clemens and Brian Schottenheimer.

Pick: Chicago 24, St. Louis 20

Carolina Panthers (-4.5) at Miami Dolphins

Carolina (7-3) is the NFC version of the Chiefs. The Panthers' offense is better, Kansas City's defense is a little better, but it's pretty much a dead heat. Miami (5-5) on the other hand saved its season by bullying the Chargers last Sunday. Who would of thought that without Richie Incognito or Jonathan Martin at the stadium?

Pick: Carolina 27, Miami 14

Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans (-11.5)

How in the world is Houston (2-8) favored by 11.5 points over anybody, even Jacksonville (1-9), with this in charge? What do you think is being said there? "Hey Wade, can you believe I haven't been fired yet?...Shutup Gary, I'm trying to figure out what that thing is up there with all the numbers, right above our furious fans."

Pick: Houston 20, Jacksonville 17 (It's still Jacksonville)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Detroit Lions (-10)

Detroit (6-4) is a volatile team, always capable of winning a game against everybody or losing to the University of Chattanooga. Tampa Bay (2-8) is barely better than Chattanooga, but actually pretty talented. Any game involving Greg Schiano and Jim Schwartz is bound to include 19 ridiculous coaching decisions. Should be thrilling.

Pick: Detroit 27, Tampa Bay 23

Indianapolis Colts at Arizona Cardinals (-1)

This might be the toughest game to pick of the bunch. Arizona is sneaky-good but Carson Palmer is openly terrible. Andrew Luck is openly very good but the Colts are sneaky-terrible. It's a long trip for Indianapolis (7-3) and Arizona (6-4) has a tough defense. Could be a fun one.

Pick: Arizona 24, Indianapolis 21 *PICK OF THE WEEK*

Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants (EVEN)

This has to be the worst nightmare of any Dallas (5-5) fan. New York (4-6) is dead as can be and then comes back to life as your defense falls apart quicker than a house of cards downwind of Wynonna Judd. I'm not sure how we will get there, but this game undoubtedly ends with this obligatory shot.

Pick: New York 30, Dallas 28

Tennessee Titans at Oakland Raiders (-1)

Oakland (4-6) is trying to figure out whether to start Matt McGloin or Terrelle Pryor for the remainder of this season. Good luck fellas. Tennessee (4-6) on the other hand has Mike Munchak and Ryan Fitzpatrick running the show. In sad news, the Titans fans did this to their stadium upon Tennessee leaving town for a weekend.

Pick: Oakland 20, Tennessee 16

Denver Broncos (-1) at New England Patriots

This is a terrific game. New England (7-3) almost never loses consecutive games and is virtually unbeatable at Gillette Stadium. On Denver's (9-1) sideline, you have Peyton Manning and Jack Del Rio's vacant stare. Incredibly, it feels like an even match. My rule? Go with the home team.

Pick: New England 34, Denver 31

San Francisco 49ers (-5.5) at Washington Redskins

Colin Kaepernick has been a disaster this season for San Francisco (6-4), but he looks like Joe Montana compared to Robert Griffin. Griffin is throwing the ball like he doesn't have knees over in Washington (3-7), which likely spells the end of Mike Shanahan's type in the capital.

Pick: San Francisco 27, Washington 17

Last Week: 9-6 (8-6-1 ATS)

Season: 99-63

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