The deeper we get into the NFL season, the more obvious it's becoming that there is going to be some new blood in the playoffs all across the NFL, particularly in the NFC.
The Eagles are running away from the NFC East and have a shot to effectively clinch the division title up on Sunday Night Football in Week 11 if they can beat the Cowboys in Dallas. The difference between victory and defeat is a two-game lead and a four-game lead in the NFC East with just six games to play. It's not a friendly spot for the Cowboys to be in, and they're going to have to give this a go without Ezekiel Elliott for the second straight game.
Not only is this a big game for Dallas in the NFC East chase, but it's a game that has tremendous Wild Card implications as well. With the Seahawks and Falcons playing against each other on Monday Night Football, one of those teams is guaranteed to pick up a win. Then remember that Detroit, Green Bay and Carolina are all still right there as well at either 6-3 or 5-4, and it would be easy to wonder if either Dallas or Atlanta could rally from 5-5 to get into the playoffs should they lose in Week 11.
Surprisingly, the best game of the week is going to be the one between the Rams and the Vikings. These two teams are both 7-2 and will both be rooting for Dallas to topple Philadelphia on SNF. If that's how this does play out, the winner of this game will be tied with the Eagles (and likely the Saints) at the top of the NFC standings as we head for the homestretch. Case Keenum has definitely reinvigorated his career with the Vikings, and even if he isn't retained in Minnesota at the end of this season to get Teddy Bridgewater back on the field, there will be teams interested in making him a starting quarterback again.
The biggest game in the AFC in Week 11 will pit the Raiders against the Patriots. New England is spending the entire week in Mexico City to get acclimated with the altitude that Estadio Azteca will provide. Oakland came to Mexico City last season and beat Houston in a Monday Night Football game. This game will be played in the middle of the afternoon and could provide a much different atmosphere.
Week 11 kicks off with a duel between the Titans and Steelers that could be crucial in the AFC playoff chase. Both of these teams are sitting atop their respective divisions just beyond the halfway point of the season, and there's a chance that one of these two could be the No. 2 seed in the playoffs and the only thing stopping the Patriots from winning yet another AFC crown. The winner of this game will have a huge leg up over the other, including that always-important tiebreaker.
Tennessee Titans at Pittsburgh Steelers - 8:25 p.m. ET (NBC)
Opening Line: Steelers -7, O/U 43.5
Preview: The Pittsburgh Steelers haven't quite won the AFC North yet, but it's hard to see a way they can blow their division lead from here. Still, a 7-2 start to the season has guaranteed Pittsburgh nothing. A win over the Tennessee Titans on Thursday Night Football would set them up well heading into Thanksgiving. Continue...
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears - 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Opening Line: Lions -3, O/U 44
Preview: The NFC North has quickly turned into a runaway in favor of the Vikings. That's bad news for the Detroit Lions and the Chicago Bears, both of whom probably only have one path into the postseason at this point. They're both going to need Wild Cards to play in January, and that probably means winning this game to keep pace with the rest of the top dogs in the NFC. Continue...
Kansas City Chiefs at New York Giants - 1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Chiefs -12.5, O/U 44
Preview: The AFC West leading Kansas City Chiefs will return from their bye to face the New York Giants in Week 11. Ben McAdoo’s squad reached a new low last week when it allowed the winless San Francisco 49ers to log their first win of the season in a 31-21 triumph. His days of coaching this team look to be numbered. That estimation is further backed up by the fact that the GMEN are installed double-digit underdogs to win this game. Continue...
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Miami Dolphins - 1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Dolphins -3, O/U 40.5
Preview: One can only wonder what the respective seasons for both the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Miami Dolphins would’ve looked like had the in-state rivals actually squared off in Week 1 and been afforded a bye in Week 11. Unfortunately, that won’t be the case with each club struggling to live up to early season expectations. The Dolphins will be out to snap a three-game losing streak while the Bucs enter off just snapping their own personal five-game losing streak. Continue...
Baltimore Ravens at Green Bay Packers - 1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Ravens -2.5, O/U 38
Preview: It will have been four-plus years since the Baltimore Ravens and Green Bay Packers last squared off against one another on the gridiron leading up to Sunday’s Week 11 tilt to be played on the frozen tundra of historic Lambeau Field. John Harbaugh’s squad will enter this matchup fully rested after being on bye last week, while Mike McCarthy’s troops will return home reenergized after logging their first win since Aaron Rodgers went down with a season-ending injury. Continue...
Los Angeles Rams at Minnesota Vikings - 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Opening Line: Vikings -1.5, O/U 46
Preview: Division leaders are set to collide in Week 11 when the Minnesota Vikings return home to host one of this year’s biggest surprise teams in the Los Angeles Rams. Both clubs enter this crucial NFC tilt on fire with the Rams winners of four straight both straight up and against the spread, and the Vikings winners of five straight to go along with four pointspread covers. With potential playoff seeding on the line, this could end up being the game of the week! Continue...
Arizona Cardinals at Houston Texans - 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Opening Line: Cardinals +2.5
Preview: A pair of teams only left wondering what might have been had they not each lost their starting quarterbacks to season ending injuries will lock horns this Sunday. That’s the scenario both the Arizona Cardinals and Houston Texans each face heading into their Week 11 skirmish against one another. The Texans haven’t been very competitive since Deshaun Watson was lost for the season, while the Cardinals have been nothing short of a major disappointment each of the last two seasons fully intact. Continue...
Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns - 1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Jaguars -9, O/U 38
Preview: The Jacksonville Jaguars are the trendiest team in the NFL at the moment, and they're continuing to win games in fortunate and opportunistic fashion. Surely, the Cleveland Browns are going to have a war on their hands if they think this is going to be their first win of the season in Week 11. Continue...
Washington Redskins at New Orleans Saints - 1 p.m. ET (FOX)
Opening Line: Saints -8, O/U 49
Preview: The win streak was pushed to seven games for the “Who Dat’ Nation” last week after the New Orleans Saints went into Buffalo and skunked the Bills by 37 points. Not many predicted a win of that magnitude, but that’s been the story for Sean Payton’s squad since dropping its first two games of the season. They’ll be out to push the streak to eight straight in Week 11 back at home against a Washington Redskins squad that can’t get out of its own way. Continue...
Buffalo Bills at Los Angeles Chargers - 4:05 p.m. ET (FOX)
Opening Line: Chargers -3.5, O/U 44
Preview: On the wrong side of a pair of ugly losses the last couple weeks, the Buffalo Bills hit the road for Tinseltown badly in need of a good showing that results in a win. The Los Angeles Chargers gave yet another game away last week in Jacksonville where Anthony Lynn’s squad coughed up the lead late before ultimately going on to fall in overtime. It will be a long uphill climb the rest of the way to reach the playoffs for whichever of these teams goes down in defeat in Week 11. Continue...
Cincinnati Bengals at Denver Broncos - 4:25 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Broncos -2.5, O/U 40
Preview: A pair of three win teams are set to lock horns in Week 11 when the Cincinnati Bengals pack their bags for the Mile High City to match wits with the Denver Broncos for the fourth time in as many seasons. Both teams playoff hopes took a turn for the worse last week when Marvin Lewis’ squad went down in defeat for a second straight week, while Vance Joseph’s troops tasted the bitterness of defeat for the fifth straight time. Neither of these clubs look to be players in the hotly contested AFC moving forward. Continue...
New England Patriots vs. Oakland Raiders (Mexico City) - 4:25 p.m. ET (CBS)
Opening Line: Patriots -5.5
Preview: The New England Patriots are always known for their cutting-edge technology and the way they look for every leg up possible against their foes. They're going to be the first team to travel incredibly early for a game out of the country when they land in Mexico on Monday in preparation for their game against the Oakland Raiders at Estadio Azteca. Continue...
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys - 8:30 p.m. ET (NBC)
Opening Line: Eagles -3.5, O/U 47
Preview: The Philadelphia Eagles certainly don't have much standing between them and the NFC East title. If the Eagles can take care of business against the Dallas Cowboys in Arlington on Sunday, they'll have a four-game lead in the NFC East with just six left to play and will be on their way to the postseason for sure. Continue...
Atlanta Falcons at Seattle Seahawks - 8:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Opening Line: Seahawks -3, O/U 45
Preview: The Seattle Seahawks have been favored by at least six points in 15 straight games played here at CenturyLink Field. They'll be favored against the defending NFC champion Atlanta Falcons, but it surely won't be by six points in a crucial Monday Night Football tilt that could have massive playoff implications in the NFC. Continue...
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