The Three Thanksgiving picks were made earlier this week, but we’re bumping the entry to get fresh views. Incidentally, if we pay attention to the Thanksgiving games, things are a bit different right now. Dallas is actually ranked #1 due to shedding the Arizona beatloss. None of the picks below are contradicted, though.
TENNESSEE at Detroit: Tennessee has several beatpaths to Detroit – this is probably the most lopsided pick of the week. If Detroit wins, Tennessee would lose several beatpaths, but would still be held up pretty well by their beatwin over Indianapolis.
Seattle at DALLAS: Dallas has a beatpath to Seattle. If Seattle wins, it could be very damaging to Dallas since Tampa Bay is propping Dallas up a bit.
ARIZONA at Philadelphia: Neither has a beatpath to the other, but Arizona is favored. I don’t dare disagree given Philadelphia’s history of underperforming its potential. Arizona is playing for a beatwin, but if they lose, they lose their beatwin over Dallas, and would fall considerably in the rankings.
San Francisco at BUFFALO: Seems like Buffalo would be comfortably favored, but this is a tight matchup – Buffalo is favored, but only ranked one slot ahead of San Francisco. Both teams are playing for a beatwin.
BALTIMORE at Cincinnati: Baltimore has a beatpath to Cincinnati. If Cincinnati wins, there is no change because it’s a season split and Baltimore has an alternate beatpath.
CAROLINA at Green Bay: A pretty good game. Carolina has a beatpath to Green Bay and is favored. If Green Bay wins, they shed their beatloss to New Orleans.
NY GIANTS at Washington: An even better game – two top ten teams. The NY Giants are favored, and will get a beatwin over Washington if they win. (The loss to Cleveland would only wipe out one of the wins from the season sweep.)
New Orleans at TAMPA BAY: #9 at #7. Some good games this week! Tampa Bay is slightly favored. If New Orleans wins, they get a beatwin over Tampa Bay. If Tampa Bay wins, they avenge their earlier loss to New Orleans, bust three beatloops (putting New Orleans under the thumb of the rest of the NFC South), and shed their beatloss to Dallas – in one scenario, they’d then end up #1 in the rankings. A key NFC South game. I’ll personally pick Tampa Bay.
INDIANAPOLIS at Cleveland: Indianapolis has a beatpath to Cleveland and is favored. Indianapolis would lose their beatwin over Baltimore if they lose.
MIAMI at St. Louis: Miami has a beatpath to St. Louis and is favored. If St. Louis wins, it would flatten out the bottom of the graph even more by St. Louis shedding Buffalo – in fact, their worst beatloss would be to New England. St. Louis has an opportunit to rise in the rankings here.
ATLANTA at San Diego: Atlanta has a beatpath to San Diego and is favored. If San Diego wins, there are no major changes to the graph, because of redundant beatpaths. I’ll personally pick San Diego.
Kansas City at OAKLAND: Oakland has quietly been improving. The press talks about Denver losing to lowly Oakland last week, but I don’t believe it – I think Oakland has been getting tough. If Kansas City wins, it’s a season split, with no major changes in the graph.
PITTSBURGH at New England: Neither team has a beatpath over the other. If New England wins, Pittsburgh loses their beatwin over San Diego, which helps San Diego slightly. Pittsburgh gets a beatwin with a win. I’ll personally pick New England.
Denver at NY JETS: NY Jets have a beatpath to Denver and are favored. If Denver wins, they shed their beatloss to Miami – and could end up a team with no beatwins and no beatlosses, which I’ve never seen this late in the season. But the team does have a crazy identity. The team that beat Tampa Bay and Atlanta has no resemblance to the team that lost to Kansas City and Miami. I honestly think Denver is going to win this one, but I won’t personally pick them.
CHICAGO at Minnesota: If Chicago sweeps Minnesota, they’ll develop a beatwin over them. If Minnesota wins, they’ll actually redevelop their beatwin over Carolina, making the top of the graph extremely vertical. Chicago is favored.
Jacksonville at HOUSTON: Houston has a beatpath to Jacksonville (despite losing to them earlier this year) and is favored. If Jacksonville wins, they could help themselves a lot, as their next worse beatloss is to Tennessee. If Houston wins, they’ll bust two beatloops and get back beatwins over Cleveland and Cincinnati.