By Eric Amzallag
MINNESOTA (RushPRNews)12/12/08 – This NFL weekend will be full of coincidence matchups. The matchups will be between two overachieving teams, two teams who have failed to live up to expectations and two teams slumping squaring off against each other.
Below are Ericâ€™s canâ€™t miss NFL picks for week 15.
1) San Francisco 49ers @ Miami Dolphins
Pick: San Francisco +6.5
This will be an entertaining matchup between two overachieving teams. The Dolphins have bounced back this season at 8-5 when compared to their dismal 1-15 record last season and are in a 3 way tie for first place of the AFC East. The 49ers have no hope in making the playoffs but their 5-8 record is not so bad considering they have become a much better team when Mike Singletary took over as head coach after 6 weeks into the season.
The stats are highly in San Francisco’s favour. They are 4-1 against the spread in their last 5 games while the Dolphins are 1-4. The Dolphins are 5-21 against the spread in their last 26 games as a home favourite. The main reason Miami is favoured by 6.5 is because West Coast teams have had great difficulties when playing on the East Coast this season. Their record is 1-14 straight up. However, San Francisco happens to be the only West Coast team that managed to win in the East Coast and Miami failed to cover at home against 2 out of 3 West Coast opponents this season. Take the Niners with the points.
2) Green Bay Packers @ Jacksonville Jaguars
Pick: Green Bay -1.5
Both teams will not be headed to the playoffs and have not lived up to expectations. Before the season, many NFL commentators considered the Jaguars as Super Bowl ’08 contenders. At 4-9 this season they will be looking for some closure to their disastrous season. The Packers fans have got to be disappointed with their team who is 5-8 but at the same time should be comforted knowing that Aaron Rodgers is more than able to fill in the QB void that Brett Favre left behind.
Both teams havenâ€™t been playing too well as of late. However, the Packers still look like a competitive team and the Jags look like theyâ€™ve completely given up on this season. Jacksonville has lost 4 in a row and is averaging only 13.25 points per game during that stretch. The spread for this game is too low and should be easily met by the Packers. This season, the Packers are 7-2 against the spread in their last 9 playing against teams with a losing record. Jacksonville is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 versus a team with a losing record and 0-6 ATS in its last 6 home games and 0-4 ATS in its last 4 overall. Expect this to be a one sided affair. The Jags are missing their top receiver and their top shutdown corner. Green Bay will win this one convincingly.
3) Buffalo Bills @ New York Jets
Pick: Under 41
The Jets and Bills have been in a rut the past two weeks. The Bills troubles can be attributed to the loss of QB Trent Edwards to injury 2 weeks ago. Their replacement QB, J.P. Losman played poorly last week getting sacked 4 times and completing 13/27 passes for only 123 yards. With Losman at QB, it is unlikely the Bills will take advantage of the Jets pass defense who is ranked 31st in the league.
The Jets have been slumping since they handed Tennessee its first loss of the season 3 weeks ago. Future hall of fame quarterback, Brett Favre, is partially responsible for the Jets current difficulties since they are averaging 15.5 points in the last 3 games. The Jets will also have difficulty putting numbers up on the board because they will be facing off against the 11th ranked defense in the NFL. The cold weather come into play as well which will force both teams to run the ball more and will lead to a low scoring game.
Sports Zealots, bettors and fans alike get accurate NFL picks with Ericâ€™s Weekly 3â€™s every Thursday or Friday morning.
Photo:-Staff photo by Allen Eyestone