Something was seriously out of alignment in Week 10 of NFL play. The train wreck Cleveland Browns beat Buffalo and how about this one? The Miami Dolphins are actually 2-0 in November! Yeah, my thoughts exactly. Even the previously unbeaten San Francisco 49ers fell as they lost in overtime to Seattle on Monday night.
Week 11 has plenty more craziness in-store and it begins on Thursday night when Pittsburgh – which is now a surprising 5-4 – travels to its favorite destination (please note the sarcasm) to take on the Browns. Two teams fighting for their playoff lives – Chicago and the Los Angeles Rams – battle on Sunday night, and then the weekends with an AFC West showdown between the Chiefs and Chargers.
The Steelers hate the Browns and the feeling is mutual from those in Cleveland. The Browns had high hopes this season, but the hype all but wore off until somehow Cleveland upset Buffalo last week. The Steelers were reeling after the loss of QB Ben Roethlisberger but have managed to win four in a row and put themselves right back in playoff contention. Minkah Fitzpatrick and the defense are playing extremely well. Cleveland hasn’t beaten Pittsburgh since 2014 and only has three wins against the Steelers since 2003. All three of those victories have come at home. Not this time. Steelers 20, Browns 17.
Texans vs. Ravens (HOU +4, O/U: 50) Best Line: MyBookie
The Ravens appear to be staking claim to the NFL’s best. Baltimore has a win over New England and the 49ers just lost their first game in Week 10. The Ravens lead the NFL in rushing. Quarterback Lamar Jackson is an MVP candidate, but the Ravens have lost two games to teams that can score a lot of points. Enter the Houston Texans, who can light up the scoreboard. QB Deshaun Watson has 18 touchdown passes. The OVER has hit in five of Baltimore’s last seven games and six of the last seven against AFC opponents. OVER 50.
Patriots vs. Eagles (NE -3.5, O/U: 45.5) Best Line: America’s Bookie
Don’t even bring up the term “Super Bowl rematch.” This is nothing like that. The rosters are different and Philadelphia is consistently inconsistent. The Patriots lost for the first time before having Week 10 off. That was probably a good thing with all of the upsets that occurred. New England is 4-2 SU against Philadelphia in the last six meetings. The Patriots are 5-1 in their last six on the road and 4-1 ATS in their last five games. Oh, and they are 14-4 in games played after a bye week. Patriots 28, Eagles 22.
Jaguars vs. Colts (JAX +3, O/U: 44) Best Line: MyBookie
The Colts missed starting QB Jacoby Brissett last week. Brissett has a sprained MCL and is questionable for this week’s game with Jacksonville. Backup Brian Hoyer completed just 18-of-39 passes and the Colts managed a measly 12 points … against the Dolphins! The Jags are more competitive than Miami and Jacksonville is actually 5-2 SU in its last seven games with the Colts. Interestingly enough, the Jags are also 7-0-1 ATS in their last eight games against Indianapolis. That will make you go hmmmm. Without Brissett, the Jags can pull the victory. Either way, this one will be close. Colts 16, Jaguars 14.
Chiefs vs. Chargers (KC -4, O/U 53.5) Best Line: MyBookie
On Monday night, the national TV audience will have the opportunity to see which Chargers team shows up. The Chargers are like that beautiful ex-girlfriend. She was stunning, but she would light the bathroom on fire if you looked at her wrong. For example, Los Angeles beats Green Bay 26-11 then turns around and loses to Oakland. Now, they are up against the Chiefs, which have beaten the Chargers in nine of the last 10 meetings between the two teams. The Chiefs are also 6-0 ATS in their last six games against the Chargers on the road. Chiefs 33, Chargers 27.
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.