After 12 weeks of entertaining football and plenty of upsets, we find ourselves now in December and teams looking to make a late dash for a playoff spot. Thanksgiving is but a distant memory as we look forward to some great fixtures that will have a bearing on the postseason for a number of teams under pressure. Below you will find our expert predictions on the top NFL game week 13 matches. We look at the key fixtures on the American Football calendar and give you insight into our score predictions as well as tips and picks on featured games. Be sure to check here every week for our latest information on NFL odds and betting. December kicks off with a bang and we see some important divisional matchups that will surely have a bearing on the playoff picture come the end of the season. With teams looking to bounce back from shock defeats and the Broncos and Bengals meeting in a winner takes all matchup, week 13 promises to produce some great games this Sunday. Read on to see our moneyline predictions together with some tips on the spread and total points for all of the NFL games this week.
Arguably the biggest game of week 13 sees a massive matchup in the AFC playoff picture between the Chargers and the Steelers who are fresh off a defeat which ended their 6 game win streak. To be fair, the signs were there in the shocking fist half performance against the Jaguars the previous week and the Broncos are no push over at home. The Chargers of course have also recently lost to the Broncos, but bounced back impressively against the hapless Cardinals where they put up an impressive 45 points. That game however was marred by the injury to star running back Melvin Gordon who will miss the next few weeks and will be a big absentee for the Chargers at Heinz field. He has over 800 yards and 9 touchdowns so far this season and LA will have to devise an offensive plan without him in the backfield. For the Steelers Big Ben will be looking to atone for his game losing interception last week which was his 12th of the year. JuJu Smith-Schuster is turning into a dangerous weapon and benefiting from space and one on one matchups whilst teams double team Antonio Brown. We go for the Steelers in this game for these 2 reasons; 1) they are playing at home and 2) the win it is more important to them. Should the Steelers lose 2 in a row they will drop to 7-4-1 and mean a whole host of AFC teams (including division rivals the Ravens) will potentially move a game closer in the race for a wild card spot. The matchup will also provide 2 top quarterbacks who have played at the highest level for a number of years – so we expect to see a high scoring game just edged out by the Steelers. James Conner has only 2 touchdown in his last 4 games and he could bounce back with a big performance against the Chargers run defence which allows over 100 yards a game.
Two teams with identical 5-6 records but going in very different directions square off in this AFC matchup at Paul Brown stadium. The Bengals are on a dire run of form with their third loss in a row coming last week against a Browns team infront of their home fans. The total points differential in those 3 games is an embarrassing -55 and they now find themselves with their QB1 Andy Dalton injured for the remainder of the season. While it does seem all doom and gloom, the Bengals are somehow still in the playoff hunt – but only if they turn it around and snap the losing streak this week. The good news continues for the Bengals as it appears star receiver AJ Green will take to the field this week and will look to connect with backup QB Jeff Driskel and put some points on the board. On the other side of the touchline the Broncos have won their last 2 games against tough opponents and their remaining schedule looks pretty easy. With winnable games against the 49ers and Raiders coming up shortly and a week 17 game against a Chargers organisation who may be resting players by then. Undrafted steal of the season Phillip Lindsay can expect a monster game as the Cincy defence is allowing almost 150 yards rushing against per game. With their season nose diving big time the Bengals need a big game, but cannot get the defence off the field on important third downs. While Case Keenum is not an elite QB he has the better skill set to his opposite number and with the Broncos flying high we expect them to win their third straight and walk out of Cincinnati with a 6-6 record.
The AFC East has a familiar look and feel to it yet again this year. While the Patriots are perhaps not even in the Superbowl discussion, they sit atop the East and leave the remaining 3 teams to fight between the scraps of a possible wild card spot. The Bills have won their last 2 games, albeit recently against a shocking Jets team and last week versus a Jags team which looks like a team already planning their January holidays. Had Fournette not lost his cool and got ejected (whilst on the 1 yard line) then perhaps the score would have been different. Playing in the heat of South Florida is tough for any team and the Bills will have to deal with the elements as well as a rushing attach of the wiley veteran Frank Gore, together with the explosive Kenyan Drake. The latter scored a touchdown last week and will look to build on that this week. Ryan Tannehill looked average on his return from injury last week – which ironically is how most Fins fans have seen him since he joined the organisation 8 years ago. With his job reportedly on the line, the quarterback will look to show the front office in the remaining games of the season that he deserves a new contract and leading them to the playoffs will do a lot to silence his many doubters. The Miami rush defence is giving up almost 140 yards a play so LeSean McCoy can expect plenty of touches and take the burden off rookie QB Josh Allen. Knowing that a loss will end their playoff hopes and season, we like the look of Miami to win at home and move onto 6-6. Looking at the remaining 4 games of the schedule, they face both the Pats and the Vikings and will know that a win against the Bills is an absolute must.
The Pats are 8-3, but not playing anywhere near their best, which is a worrying sign for the rest of the league. The Brady Bellichick dynasty has been called into question before, and the answer has normally been an emphatic superbowl winning season. Tom Brady has a 65% passer completion rating as things stand, but it is his ability to come good when the business end of the season approaches that makes him the GOAT. With most of his offensive weapons back on the field we can expect the Pats to have a strong finish to the regular season starting with a win at home against the Vikings. With Gronkowski seemingly fit, Edelman back from suspension, Gordon learning the offence and Michel out of the back field the Pats have the firepower to out score the Vikings who were fancied pre season as contenders for a superbowl run. In Thielen and Diggs Minnesota has two prolific and genuine star receivers, however Diggs is questionable for the game. In a defence that only allows an average 315 yards a game the Pats will be made to work hard for their points. Xavier Rhodes will be a huge miss for the Vikings defence if he does not play – currently noted as doubtful on the injury report. Veteran Brady will look interestingly over to that corner and testing Rhodes fitness or his replacement in what could be a mismatch. Pats to win a tight contest and march on to another post season under the guidance of Mr Do Your Job Bellichick.
Not a good game on paper if you are an Arizona fan. Coming off a drubbing by the Chargers last week, the Cardinals now visit Lambeau Field and will be coming up against a clearly angry Aaron Rodgers. Green Bays season may already be over in terms of post season action, but the nail will be in the coffin if they do not get the win at home against an Arizona team which has only 2 wins all season. Neither team can keep their quarterback protected in the pocket so we will expect to see Rodgers setting off and extending plays as he so often does. Green Bay wins, Rodgers gives a slightly less angry press conference and Arizona looks to the draft prospects and that potential number 1 overall pick.
Should be an easy game to call right? An 8-3 team against a 3-8 team would normally be indicative of an easy game for the Bears, but we have seen a resilient Giants team in recent weeks. New York had won 2 in a row, before losing to a last second field goal by the Eagles last week and in Saquon Barkley they have a super human running back. Chicago have won 5 straight and that defensive front is probably the meanest in football averaging 3 sacks a game. Eli Manning will be looking over his shoulder (or handing the ball off to Barkley) most of the game in which Chicago will look to kill the Giants revitalised offence. We see a close game but one that eventually the Bears will win to lock up the NFC North and dash the Giants hopes of running the table.