• Jake Klausner

NFL Week 11 Analysis

The Playoff Push Begins


We are getting to that point in the season where wins become much more crucial. With the season now in its eleventh week, teams in the hunt know that their margin for error is high. With that said, let's look at our NFL Week 11 analysis.

New England Patriots (6-4) vs. Atlanta Falcons (4-5)

Thursday 8:20 p.m. ET

TV: FOX/NFL NET Line: NE -7.0



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • Other than the Titans, no one has been hotter than the New England Patriots. They are winners of five out of their last six while continuing to improve every week. Bill Bellichick is once again proving why he is considered one of the greatest coaches of all time. Overall, the Patriots are a damn good football team with playmakers on both sides. Rookie gunslinger Mac Jones has commanded the offense well, and edge rusher Matthew Judon and ballhawk JC Jackson continue to cause problems for opposing teams.


  • After getting stomped on the road in Dallas, the Falcons find themselves in tenth place in the NFC but still have an outside chance at making the playoffs. However, they can't afford to lose many more games, and the Patriots aren't exactly a walk in the park. It doesn't get any better for Atlanta, as RB Cordarrelle Patterson (ankle) will be a game-time decision for Thursday's game. If he is unable to go, the Falcons will be without their most versatile player on offense.


PREDICTION:


Even if Patterson can go, I don't think the Falcons are pulling it out this week. The fact that the game is in Atlanta does help the Falcons, but the Patriots are too good of a team, and I see the Pats getting it done on the road. Pick: NE -7.0

Indianapolis Colts (5-5) vs. Buffalo Bills (6-3)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: CBS Line: BUF -7.0


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • It didn't look pretty last week for the Colts, but at the end of the day, a win is still a win. Indy got the win last week against the Jags, thanks to another monster performance from Jonathan Taylor, who has a chance to become the new rushing leader this week. Along with Taylor, Carson Wentz has settled in at quarterback, as he has put together a couple of solid performances. If the Colts want to get past the Bills this week, the offense has to make plays and keep the Bills' offense off the field.


  • After an embarrassing loss to Jacksonville a couple of weeks ago, the Bills bounced back by thumping the Jets last week. Buffalo's defense was all over the place, forcing four interceptions. Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs developed a strong connection, as they connected on two touchdowns. Despite the win, the Bills are coming off an easy stretch, and they are finally getting themselves an actual test in the form of the Colts.

PREDICTION:

I see this being an extremely physical contest. The Colts are sitting in a position where wins are at a premium, and they can't afford to lose their momentum. The Bills are the more talented team in this matchup, but they haven't faced any good competition in a while. I see the Bills winning a tight contest at home, but I like the Colts to cover the spread.

Pick: BUF (IND +7.0)

Baltimore Ravens (6-3) vs. Chicago Bears (3-6)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: CBS Line: BAL -6.0



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • Baltimore is coming off a bad loss to the Dolphins last Thursday. The Ravens responded after the defeat by cutting veteran RB Le'Veon Bell, who had signed with the Ravens before the season started. The Ravens have struggled to get any productivity out of the backfield after losing their top two running backs (Gus Edwards and JK Dobbins) and went down with torn ACLs at the beginning of the season. Ravens' running backs have combined for 705 rushing yards this season, which ranks 23rd in the NFL. QB Lamar Jackson has been the only spark in the running game, so they will need DeVonte Freeman and Latavius Murray to step up.


  • The Bears find themselves in a position where they aren't out of it yet, but one more loss will hurt their playoff hopes. Justin Fields' play in the past couple of weeks has been an encouraging sign for Bears fans. While his passing numbers haven't been jawdropping, his ability to scramble and make plays with his feet has been exciting to watch. On the other side, the Bears are optimistic that OLB Khalil Mack (foot) and safety Eddie Jackson (hamstring) will play this week, vastly benefiting the Bears' defense.

PREDICTION:

I think this is going to be a battle between two great dual-threat quarterbacks. Fields shows a lot of promise, but I think Jackson's throwing ability will be the difference in this game. The Ravens have more playmakers on the outside, which is why I have the Ravens pulling away late. Pick: BAL-6.0

Detroit Lions (0-8-1) vs. Cleveland Browns (5-5)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: CLE -10.0


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • The Lions might not have won last week, but it sure did feel like one. Dan Campbell's squad managed to sneak out a tie against Pittsburgh in what can only be described as a "shitshow of a game." While the Lions do show a lot of heart, it's going to take more than heart to get the win in the Dog Pound this week.


  • There's not a quarterback this season that has taken more of a beating than Baker Mayfield. Mayfield is currently battling left foot soreness and a right knee contusion he suffered in the third quarter of last week's loss. He has also dealt with shoulder pain all season. Despite saying this is the most banged-up he's ever been in his career, the plan at the moment is for Mayfield to get the start at QB this week.

PREDICTION:

Much like last week's matchup for the Lions, I think they will stay in the game. However, if Baker Mayfield suits up for Cleveland, I see the Browns winning at home. I think the Browns will get the win at home, but I'm picking the Lions to cover the spread, once again.

Pick: CLE (DET +10.0)

Houston Texans (1-8) vs. Tennessee Titans (8-2)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: CBS Line: TEN -10.0

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • Tyrod Taylor's return to the team proved to be ineffective in their last game. Having come off a week's rest, you would think the Texans would be ready to go, but the Texans are a horrible football team, and they are playing against the hottest team in the league. All I can say is this: Good Luck!


  • Man, does this Tennessee Titans team know how to win, or what? After shockingly losing to the Jets in week five, the Titans have won their last six games. Five out of those six wins have been against potential playoff teams, and they have done most of this without Derrek Henry.


PREDICTION:


I expect the streak to continue this weak. The Titans should have no problem with Houston this week, and the Titans win this one, big.

Pick: TEN -10.0

Green Bay Packers (8-2) vs. Minnesota Vikings (4-5)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: GB -2.5


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • As of right now, the Green Bay Packers are the best team in the NFC. Despite a less than stellar performance last week against Seattle, they managed to get the win. The absence of Aaron Jones in the backfield hurts, but that won't stop Aaron Rodgers from spreading the ball down the field. Not to mention, A.J. Dillion is more than capable of filling in for Jones.


  • The Minnesota Vikings have the best chance to get into the playoffs out of the teams currently in the hunt. While the offense is more than capable of making a big run, the question is whether or not the Vikings can continue to finish when it matters most. Last week's win against the Chargers was a welcoming sign for Vikings fans moving forward.

PREDICTION:

Divisional games always make it harder for me to pick a winner because you never know what will happen. I see this game coming down to the wire, but ultimately, Aaron Rodgers will make more plays than Kirk Cousins down the stretch, and the Packers win a close one on the road.

Pick: GB -2.5

Miami Dolphins (3-7) vs. New York Jets (2-7)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: CBS Line: MIA -3.5


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • A win last week against the Ravens keeps the Dolphins' slim playoff hopes alive. However, one more loss will more than likely eliminate them from playoff contention. Expect Tua Tagovailoa to get the offense rolling this week.


  • It's Joe Flacco time in New York! The Jets announced that Flacco would start this week, making him the fourth different starting QB. Not much else to say about the Jets, but Flacco could add some excitement for the team.

PREDICTION:

I don't plan on watching this game, but I think it will be pretty close. Flacco will offer some life for the Jets, but Tua will be the difference-maker as I've got the Dolphins winning in this one.

Pick: MIA -3.5

New Orleans Saints (5-4) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (4-6)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: PHI -1.5



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • This matchup is crucial for both teams. They currently sit as the sixth-best team in the NFC and have the second wildcard spot starting with the Saints. Despite losing a close one in Nashville last week, the Saints feel confident that their top playmaker, Alvin Kamara, will suit up this week after missing last week's game because of a knee injury. Expect Mark Ingram to get most of the carries if he doesn't play.


  • I like what I've seen out of the Eagles in the past few weeks. Philly's running attack, Jordan Howard, Boston Scott, and Kenneth Gainwell, has been promising. Mix that in with QB Jalen Hurts' running ability, and you can see why they've won two out of their last three.

PREDICTION:


This is another matchup with huge playoff implications, which means this game will most likely be a dogfight. The Eagles have done an excellent job changing their identity on offense, and they've adapted nicely. The Saints aren't sure if Kamara will be fit enough to play. If he's unable to play, it will make it harder for the Saints to contend. I think Jalen Hurts and the Eagles get it done at home. Pick: PHI -1.5

Washington Football Team (3-6) vs. Carolina Panthers (5-5)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: CAR -3.5


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • The Football Team is coming off quite the win over the defending Super Bowl champs. Although they aren't the best team, any team coached by Ron Rivera possesses tons of heart and toughness. That heart and toughness will have to show up again this week, as they will have to play it without their best player on defense, Chase Young. The edge rusher suffered a torn ACL last week and will miss the remainder of the season.


  • The Carolina Panthers are an entirely different team now. After an impressive showing in last week's dominating win against the Cardinals, newly-acquired Cam Newton will make his much-anticipated return to Carolina. With Newton named as the starting quarterback, this is an entirely different offense. Not only that but having a healthy Christian McCaffrey in the backfield changes things completely for opposing defense. Speaking of defenses, the Panthers don't have a bad one either.

PREDICTION:

The Football Team is coming off a solid win, but I don't see this game being very close. I think the Panthers thump Washington.

Pick: CAR -3.5

San Francisco 49ers (4-5) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-7)

Sunday 1 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: SF -6.0


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • Last week's win against the Rams put the Niners back in a decent position to fight for a playoff spot. Deebo Samual is one of the best playmakers in the league, as you never know where he will line up on offense. Having TE George Kittle back in the lineup has also proven to be beneficial for QB Jimmy Garoppolo. Kittle lining up on the offensive line has also given the Niners a much-needed boost upfront. Overall, I expect the Niners to be right in the thick of things come playoff season.


  • At this point in the season, all Urban Meyer is focusing on is winning football games. The Jags aren't precisely the best football team, and Meyer hasn't shown many success signs as head coach. Despite the lack of talent, they do offer a lot of heart at times, and the fans in Duval County are incredibly loyal.

PREDICTION:

I think the Jags faithful will keep them in the game, but Deebo Samual and the Niner offense will be too much in the end. I see the Niners winning this game by ten. Pick: SF -6.0

Cincinnati Bengals (5-4) vs. Las Vegas Raiders (5-4)

Sunday 4:05 p.m. ET

TV: CBS Line: CIN -1.0



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • That bye week sure did come at the right time for the Cincinnati Bengals. Come off back-to-back horrible losses to the Jets and Browns; the Bengals need to turn it around fast. They can't afford to lose any more ground in the AFC North. Joe Burrow's quarterback play needs to improve against a solid Raiders' passing attack. I expect RB Joe Mixon to play a significant role in this one, as the Bengals will look to get him involved early.


  • It certainly has been a rollercoaster of a season for the Las Vegas Raiders. First, they lose their coach; then, their star player gets in trouble with the law. The Raiders can't afford to lose any more ground in their division like the Bengals, as the AFC West is jam-packed. Derek Carr has to bounce back for the Raiders to contend, but I expect the Raider defense to step up this week.


PREDICTION:


This game is vital for both teams, as a loss for either team on Sunday could result in either team's playoff hopes dwindling. In terms of talent, the Bengals are the better team. I expect the Raiders' defense to pressure Burrow, led by Max Crosby, but that offense is too good. Carr has also been struggling lately, and I see him having a tough time against the Bengals' defense. I see it being close, but the Bengals will edge it out. Pick: CIN -1.5

Dallas Cowboys (7-2) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (6-4)

Sunday 4:25 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: KC -2.5



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • What a matchup we have in store for Sunday! Two teams that are coming off impressive wins get to face off in what could potentially be this year's Super Bowl matchup.


  • Starting with the Cowboys, they are coming off an impressive win at home against the Falcons. After an abysmal showing the previous week, Dak, Zeke, CeeDee Lamb, and the Cowboys' offense showed just how special they could be. Having Michael Gallup back on the offense is another blessing for Jerry's team. However, this matchup with the Chiefs could be their toughest one yet.


  • Remember when we talked about how the Chiefs weren't playing well, and Patrick Mahomes kept making stupid plays with the football? Yeah, that seems like it's in the past. In last week's game against the Raiders, the Chiefs' offense finally woke up. Mahomes threw for five touchdowns as Kansas City ran Vegas out of their stadium. With the win, the Chiefs now sit in first place in the AFC West. Could this be a changing of the guard?

PREDICTION:


As much as I want to pick the Cowboys in this one, I can't ignore that this game is in Arrowhead. Like I said earlier, this is probably Dallas' toughest test this season. Not to mention, the Chiefs seem to have found something. That, alone, is why I must choose the Chiefs in this one.

Pick: KC -2.5

Arizona Cardinals (7-2) vs. Seattle Seahawks (3-6)

Sunday 4:25 p.m. ET

TV: FOX Line: ARI -2.5


WHAT TO WATCH FOR:


  • As of right now, Kyler Murray is hopeful that he will suit up for Sunday's game. The quarterback has missed the last two games due to an ankle injury. Like Murray, star wideout DeAndre Hopkins has also missed the previous two games because of a hamstring. Hopkins' status heading into Sunday's game is a bit more uncertain, but a lot can happen in the next few days.


  • The Seattle Seahawks are in must-win mode. After dropping another game last week, the Seahawks can't afford to lose anymore. Russell Wilson has to improve, and I expect him to against a Cardinals' defense that's still reeling from last week.

PREDICTION:

I expect Russell Wilson to bounce back after an ugly performance at Green Bay. The only problem is that he's going up against Kyler Murray. Even if Hopkins cannot play, I still think Murray will be too much for Seattle's poor defense. I expect the Cards to win a close game in Seattle.

Pick: ARI -2.5

Pittsburgh Steelers (5-3-1) vs. Los Angeles Chargers (5-4)

Sunday 8:20 p.m. ET

TV: NBC Line: LAC -5.5

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • The Pittsburgh Steelers are coming off an embarrassing football game. Even though they came away with the tie, it didn't look like they wanted to win that game. Heading into this week, they still might be without Ben Roethlisberger, as he is still on the COVID List. Mason Rudolph will get the start if he doesn't go. All I say is that they can't play the same football they played last week if they want to beat a playoff team like the Chargers.


  • The LA Chargers currently find themselves in a bit of a slump. They have lost three out of their four games and two out of their last three since coming back from the bye. Justin Herbert has struggled as of late, as has the entire offense. For the Chargers to get back to their winning ways, they have to get some solid play out of their quarterback with the incredible flow.

PREDICTION:

I think this is a must-win for both teams, but I feel like the Chargers have more to prove at the moment. The Steelers are coming off a tie to the worst team in the league. I like Justin Herbert and the Chargers to bounce back on Sunday and get the dub. Pick: LAC -5.5

New York Giants (3-6) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-3)

Monday 8:15 p.m. ET

TV: ESPN Line: TB -11.0



WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

  • The New York Giants have been an interesting team this season. They aren't exactly a good football team, but they've had a chance to win in almost every game. The one thing holding them back has been their inability to stay healthy. Saquon Barkley is likely to be done for the remainder of the season, and it seems like every receiver for the Giants has missed at least one game. Despite all that, Joe Judge's squad has remained poised to create lots of chaos.


  • The Bucs have struggled as of late, as they have lost their last two games. Tom Brady seems to be playing more like his age, and the defense has underperformed this season. Leading up to Monday's game, it will be essential to keep an eye out for Antonio Brown and Rob Gronkowski. Both playmakers have missed the last couple of games due to injuries. Even if one of these players can suit up, it would help Brady out a lot, giving him another target to throw to.


PREDICTION:


I'd typically pick the favorite in a game like this, but with the way the Bucs have looked, I don't trust them getting this many points. I'm also a fan of Daniel Jones and how he can give it everything he has every week. That is why I'm picking the Giants to cover this week. Pick: TB (NYG +11.0)


Check out last weeks results right here:

Jake Klausner covers all things sports for ThePyrrhic.com. Keep your eyes peeled for NFL Analysis, World Series Recaps, and more from Jake.


Follow him on Twitter @jake_klausner


Show your love for thepyrrhic.com with this sweet branded t-shirt

37 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All