It is the final week of NFL football for everyone. It is the last time you can bet on your choice of a long list of games. The playoffs are around the corner.
Week 16 was very average for me -- I finished 8-8 against the spread.
If you are looking to wager a bit this week, here is what I would do (even though I make no guarantees at all about the quality of my picks).
Panthers (-6.5) at Falcons: Atlanta lost a heart breaker on the road on Monday and the Panthers are rolling. However, even with a bad team in the final week of the season, when they are playing at home, they are playing for their fans. They are also playing for Tony Gonzalez. I don't expect a win, but I do like the points in this game.
Ravens at Bengals (-6.5): Baltimore fights for their playoff lives and Cincinnati already has their postseason ticket punched. This is where I like Baltimore. They are hoping to grab a wild card spot and, as such, have more to play for. Again, I like the points.
Jaguars at Colts (-11.5): Again, Jacksonville ends on the road against a team that could possible earn a first round bye. This also has the look of a blowout. The spread is big, but doesn't scare me in Week 17. Colts by two touchdowns.
Jets at Dolphins (-6): This is a game I would never bet. Neither team you can trust. Ryan Tannehill has been sacked just under a gazillion times. The Jets are bonkers, but the Fish were clobbered by Buffalo. I'll take the points.
Lions at Vikings (-3): The Lions are on the road with nothing to play for now that they cannot win the division. Sense a trend? I'm going with the home team here. Three points is nothing to give up here.
Packers (-3) at Bears: Aaron Rodgers is back. That's all you need to know. Plus, Chicago can't stop the run and Eddie Lacy is playing well. Sorry, Bears, Green Bay is winning the division. I don't mind giving up the three.
Bills at Patriots (-9.5): The trend continues. A team going nowhere is on the road against a team with something to play for -- a playoff bye. I thought Tom Brady wouldn't be able to cover against the Ravens. Boy was I wrong. Don't bet against Brady. I should have known. Bet Brady now.
Bucs at Saints (-12.5): The Bucs are dead. The Saints need a win to clinch a playoff spot for sure. The last time these two teams played in New Orleans, the Saints shut them out 41-0. As much as Cardinals fans want the Bucs to beat them, the Saints with a big win at home is my betting lock.
49ers at Cardinals (pick'em): I'm going with the home team in part because I'm part homer, but also because Arizona absolutely must win to even have a chance of making the playoffs. They haven't lost against the spread in over two months and are 6-1 at home. With no spread, this is easy.
Rams at Seahawks (-10.5): If you have followed this at all, you will see where I would bet. The Rams are done. Seattle is angry after a home loss and need a win to clinch home field. The Rams are bad on the road. Seahawks in a rout.
Eagles (-6.5) at Cowboys: This is easy money. The Cowboys don't win Week 17 deciding games. They will be starting Kyle Orton at quarterback. Sean Lee is still hurt. They can't stop anyone. Eagles are easy money -- another lock.