NFL Week 14 is Loaded with Big-Time Showdowns

THE NFL WEEK 14 REPORT - QUICK-HITTER GAME PREVIEWS FOR A BUNCH OF SUNDAY SHOWDOWNS

In case you're wondering, there are only three NFL Week 14 games that are putting together a pair of losing teams up against one another - and so that means there are a slew of important tilts on the menu with some sort of playoff implications and we'll chit-chat about them shortly but first this key reminder:

Jim Hurley's Network of Handicappers and Bloggers have plenty of NFL Week 14 Winners - that's both Sides & Totals -- plus remember that you can sign up for the College Football Bowl games right now as there's 41 Bowls in all including the National Championship Game to be played on the evening of Jan. 8, 2018 -- so check with us here online or 1-800-323-4453.

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NFL WEEK 14

On Sunday, it's ...

OAKLAND (6-6) at KANSAS CITY (6-6) - 1 p.m. ET, CBS
The KC Chiefs were, indeed, 5-and-oh SU (straight-up) to start this season but the defense has caved in (allowed 28-or-more points in three of its last six games) but can a Raiders' club with a banged-up pass-catching corps - probably no WR Amari Cooper -- pull off the season series sweep? Hey, doesn't Oakland QB Derek Carr look very ordinary these days with or without the aforementioned Cooper and WR Michael Crabtree?
Spread Note - The Chiefs have covered six of their last nine showdowns against the rival Raiders.


DALLAS (6-6) at NEW YORK GIANTS (2-10) - 1 p.m. ET, Fox
The Eli Manning Lovefest should be going strong for a quarter-or-so here at MetLife Stadium but the visiting Cowboys are the real news as Jason Garrett's club attempts to keep the 'Boys alive with some long-shot playoff hopes but remember Dallas has scored only 7, 9 and 6 points in three of its last four RB Ezekiel Elliott-less outings. Could be some wintry conditions in New Jersey (snow was coming down Saturday morning!) and let's see how Cowboys' QB Dak Prescott handles the chilly temps.
Spread Note - Dallas is 19-11 versus the vig away since the start of the 2015 season.

MINNESOTA (10-2) at CAROLINA (8-4) - 1 p.m. ET, CBS
Let's put things in perspective here: The Vikings have covered their last seven consecutive games overall - and they've won eight in a row in SU fashion - and here they're a 2.5-point betting favorite against a team that could wind up winning the best division in the league. Hey, the Panthers' defense must figure out a way to stifle QB Case Keenum (15 TDs / 5 INTs) who should be garnering MVP votes these days - remember when it was Carolina QB Cam Newton (16 TDs / 11 INTs) who won that award a couple of years back? These days Newton is terribly inconsistent and a little gun-shy when tucking and running it.
Spread Stat - Believe it or not, the Vikes are an electric 42-19 ATS (that's a .689 winning percentage) under fourth-year head coach Mike Zimmer.


PHILADELPHIA (10-2) at LOS ANGELES RAMS (9-3) - 4:25 p.m. ET. Fox
It's the marquee matchup on a pro football weekend with a few "marquee matchups" but this one will either cement the visiting and now 1-point underdog Eagles as the proverbial "team-to-beat" in the NFC or else have folks hopping off the Philly bandwagon. We know, we know that everyone's making a big fuss over the fact this game pits 2016 top draftee QB Jared Goff (3,184 yards passing with 20 TDs and 6 INTs) and number two '16 draftee QB Carson Wentz (3,005 yards passing with 29 TDs and 6 INTs) but odds are the winner of this gigantic showdown could well be the one that makes more field-switching plays from their defenses/special teams - will a PK Greg Zuerlein make-or-miss from 50-plus yards out be the final play of this game? The Pro Bowl-bound kicker has bagged an amazing 36-of-38 FG tries so far in this '17 season. Wow!
Spread Note - Philadelphia is 9-3 against the odds overall this season; the LA Rams are 8-4 ATS and that includes a nifty 6-3 spread mark when in the favorite's role.


SEATTLE (8-4) at JACKSONVILLE (8-4) - 4:25 p.m. ET, Fox
The "marquee matchups" roll on - and here's another one: The host Jaguars sport the league's stingiest defense - they allow only 14.8 points per game - but here the Jags must wrap up elusive QB Russell Wilson who has astoundingly accounted for 29 of his team's 30 offensive touchdowns. No doubt the Wilson-to-TE Jimmy Graham connection has heated up (five TDs in last four games) and so red-zone defense by DL Calais Campbell and mates could be the key to this interconference tilt. An X-factor? Perhaps it's Jacksonville QB Blake Bortles (309 passing yards and two TDs in 30-10 win against Indianapolis last week) and whether he can connect on a few deep balls against a tattered Seahawks' secondary.
Spread Stat - Seattle is a sluggish 14-18-1 ATS away the past three-plus seasons.

 
On Sunday Night, it's ...BALTIMORE (7-5) at PITTSBURGH (10-2) - 8:30 p.m. ET, NBC
No doubt the Steelers are still counting their bruises following Monday night's violent 23-20 come-from-behind non-cover win at Cincinnati - will the so-called "short week" be a true disadvantage to Mike Tomlin's team here? The visiting Ravens have their own injury woes - star CH Jimmy Smith (Achilles) is out for the year and so who's gonna slow down record-breaking Steelers' WR Antonio Brown (see 88 catches for 1,296 yards already this year)? Keep in mind that Pittsburgh copped a 26-9 win in Baltimore back in Week 4 play when RB Le'Veon Bell registered a pair of touchdowns.
Spread Stat - The Ravens are 5-4-3 spreadwise at Pittsburgh the past 10 years and that includes a pair of post-season games at Heinz Field.

NOTE: Catch our Monday Night Football game preview - that's New England at Miami - in our next edition of Jim Sez.

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