As the 2019 NFL regular season nears its end, the playoff picture is getting clearer. Week 14 will make that picture even more distinct as several games have huge postseason implications. After a not so good Week 13, Coach Rick is back to deliver this week’s NFL betting previews.
Thursday night’s Cowboys-Bears clash is a big one for Dallas. At 6-6, the Cowboys need to stake their claim to the NFC East title. The Eagles can do the same on Monday night when they host the Giants.
Baltimore plays another potential playoff opponent when the Ravens travel to Buffalo. An AFC championship game rematch takes place in New England where the Patriots are coming off a rare loss. It’s a huge week in the NFL. For all the action and to review the top bookmakers, follow along.
The Cowboys just can’t seem to pull away from Philadelphia in the NFC East. At 6-6, Dallas can’t afford a loss in a game they should win. The Bears’ season got away from them, but head coach Matt Nagy and company have won three of their last four. The Cowboys are 4-2 ATS in their last six. Chicago has lost its last two (2014 & 2016) against Dallas. This is a Cowboys’ must-win. Dallas 33, Chicago 27
Carolina vs. Atlanta (ATL -2, O/U: 48) Best Line: MyBookie
The Panthers season fell apart as a result of their current four-game losing skid. Carolina has lost four straight to Atlanta and seven of the last eight. Sunday’s game is in Atlanta where the Panthers have not won since 2014. Carolina is 1-5 ATS in their five road games in Atlanta. Falcons 28, Panthers 20
Baltimore vs. Buffalo (BAL -5.5, O/U: 43.5) Best Line: BetOnline
The Ravens-Bills matchup on Sunday could be a potential postseason matchup. Buffalo has one of the league’s better defenses, but can it stop Lamar Jackson and a Baltimore offense that scores over 33 points a game? Probably not, but the Total has gone Under in nine of Buffalo’s 12 games this season. UNDER 43.5
Cincinnati vs. Cleveland (CIN +8.5, O/U: 42.5) Best Line: MyBookie
Head coach Zac Taylor finally got his first NFL win as the Bengals beat the Jets last week. This week, it’s back to reality. But, it is the Browns so anything is possible. With Andy Dalton back at quarterback, the Bengals keep this one close. Cleveland 27, Cincinnati 23
San Francisco v. New Orleans (NO -3, O/U: 45) Best Line: MyBookie
Despite a loss last week, the 49ers still have a hold on the NFC’s top seed in the postseason. All that could change Sunday as the Niners travel to the 10-2 Saints. The two teams haven’t played since 2016. The 49ers have a powerful running game and a ferocious defense. The Saints have Drew Brees and WR Michael Thomas as well as dynamic RB Alvin Kamara. The offenses prevail in this one. OVER 45
LA Chargers vs. Jacksonville (LAC -2.5, O/U: 43) Best Line: America’s Bookie
The Chargers and Jaguars have disappointed in 2019. Gardner Minshew will start the remainder of the season for the Jags. The Chargers have lost their last three in a row, but they have won seven of their last 10 games against Jacksonville. They are also 7-0 ATS in their last seven against the Jags. LA Chargers
Tennessee vs. Oakland (TEN -2.5, O/U: 46.5) Best Line: BetOnline
The Titans have won three straight and five of their last six to put them in position for a playoff berth. The Raiders’ hype is all but dead. Oakland (6-6) hasn’t beaten a team with a winning record all season. Tennessee is peaking at the right time. Tennessee 36, Oakland 21
Kansas City vs. New England (NE -2.5, O/U: 48) Best Line: BetOnline
It’s an AFC championship rematch from a year ago. The Patriots and Chiefs actually played twice last season and New England won both games, one at home and one on the road. The Patriots lost last week to Houston and rarely does Bill Belichick lose two in a row. New England 33, Kansas City 30
Seattle vs. Los Angeles Rams (LAR +2.5, O/U: 46.5) Best Line: BetOnline
This is a must-win for the Rams. With Seattle, San Francisco, Green Bay, and Minnesota all in the hunt at 9-3 or better; one more Rams loss clearly eliminates them from the postseason. The Seahawks are on a roll and are tough to beat. With their backs against the wall and playing at home, the Rams pull the upset. LA Rams 25, Seattle 22
NY Giants vs. Philadelphia (PHI -8.5, O/U: 47) Best Line: My Bookie
At some point, someone is going to take control of the NFC East. The Eagles blew the chance to pick up a game last week when they lost to Miami. Philly closes the season with four games all against division opponents. This is a game they should win and must in order to have a shot at a division title. The Eagles have won the last five in a row and nine of the last ten against the Giants. They roll at home. Philadelphia 33, NY Giants 20
A native of Western Pennsylvania, Rick, a Generation X-er, who now lives just north of the Motor City, Detroit, Michigan. A former high school, college, and professional football player, Rick now spends his time as a high school coach and as a personal quarterback trainer. An all-state high school quarterback, he went on to become an Academic All-American at Division II Indiana University of PA. He later coached at his alma mater helping lead the program to the 1990 NCAA Division II national championship game. Rick has also served as a high school head coach and as an assistant in Pennsylvania, New York, and Michigan.
His passion for sports writing started when he was the sports editor for his high school newspaper and continued when he worked as a sportswriter for the Jamestown (New York) Post-Journal in the early 1990s. A true sports fanatic, Rick enjoys all things Pittsburgh: Steelers, Pirates, and Penguins. The Immaculate Reception, the 1979 We Are Family Pirates, and the ’91-’92 Penguins are among his favorites. After working as an educator and athletic director for several years, he again took up sports writing and has contributed to several websites and publications, including Coach & Player magazine, X & O Labs, American Football Monthly, and many others.
When not consumed with coaching, watching, thinking about, or writing about football and other seasonal sports, he finds himself working out like he was still in college and reading everything from military history to Brad Thor novels. Rick has also been chasing rock god stardom as a drummer who has played with bands that have opened for the likes of Fuel, Days of the New, and Alien Ant Farm. He continues to play with his church worship group. Most importantly, Rick is married to the love of his life, Lisa, and has two beautiful daughters.