The Steelers are off in Week 11, but there's a number of other pivotal, intriguing matchups around the league, including the Ravens and Bengals matchup in Baltimore. Let's take a look at the Week 11 lines and make some picks against the point spread.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are off in Week 11 after posting a 7-3 record during their grueling ten-game stretch to start the 2011 season. After this week, all 32 NFL teams will have played 10 games and had their bye week. Digging into the various playoff scenarios in both conferences will subsequently be much easier and worthwhile as we begin to get a better understanding of where things stand heading into the home stretch of what's already been a very exciting regular season.
Even though the Steelers are off, let's take a look at the lines for this week's slate of games, which begins tonight with the Denver Broncos and the New York Jets squaring off in Denver from Mile High.
Season to Date: 54-47-2 (no picks made in Week 6,7,9)
Lines courtesy of Bet Online as listed on SB Nation's NFL Odds page, powered by Odds Shark. You can see variability of lines between other sites (Bodog, 5Dimes) to find best value.
NFL Week 11 Lines and Picks:
New York Jets (-6) at Denver Broncos
- The New York Jets have actually allowed some teams to have success running the football, particularly earlier in the year. Tim Tebow will have to throw it more than eight times like he did last week, but a steady dose of the ground game is once again probably a solid course of attack for Denver this week. I think the Jets will probably, but the Broncos are playing inspired football right now, and I think they'll feed off their home crowd well enough to keep the game close. Pick: Denver.
Cincinnati Bengals (-115) at Baltimore Ravens (-7)
- Yes, Steeler Nation, including the players themselves, are cheering for the Bengals this weekend. But after what I saw from the Bengals last Sunday, I don't think they have the offensive firepower to beat Baltimore on the road, particularly not when they'll be angry as all hell following their Week 10 road meltdown against the Seahawks. Pick: Baltimore
Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns (pick 'em)
- Talk about an unwatchable football game. I'll go with the Browns for the simple reason Jacksonville is 1-4 on the road, with their lone win coming last week against a hapless Colts squad. Pick: Cleveland
Carolina Panthers at Detroit Lions (-7)
- I think we're going to see the Lions continue to come crashing down to Earth down the stretch. They might get a win against a Panthers team that's shown its true colors in recent weeks, but I still think they'll make enough mistakes again this week to keep Carolina in the game until the fourth quarter. Pick: Carolina
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Green Bay Packers (-14)
- No matter how high you make these lines, the Packers continue to cover easily. Let's continue riding that horse until we get bucked off. Picked: Green Bay
Buffalo Bills (+100) at Miami Dolphins (-1)
- Like Detroit, I expect Buffalo to continue sliding back down to the middle of the pack. One might think they'd be favored against a two-win Dolphins squad, but Miami is actually healthy, playing well and poised to make a run back towards respectability in the season's second half. Pick: Miami
Oakland Raiders (-1) at Minnesota Vikings
- Despite being impressed by the Raiders Week 10 win over the Chargers, I still don't think I trust Carson Palmer in a loud, hostile, domed environment like Minnesota. I think Jared Allen & Co. get after him, force several mistakes, and then let Adrian Peterson grind away at an only average Raiders rush defense. Pick: Minnesota
Dallas Cowboys (-9) at Washington Redskins (-135)
- Great value with the Cowboys here. I don't think you can make the line high enough against Washington right now, even if they are playing at home. DeMarco Murray has stolen the show for Dallas the past four weeks, setting a franchise record for most rushing yards (601) over a four-game span. Look for Tony Romo to have a big game with the 'Skins keyed in on Dallas' ground game. Pick: Dallas
Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers (-9.5)
- At 8-1, it's impossible to be anything but impressed by the 49ers in Jim Harbaugh's first year as head coach. Still, Arizona has won two in a row and will be heading to the Bay Area with loads of confidence coming off last Sunday's win over the Eagles. I expect them to keep this one close. Pick: Arizona
Seattle Seahawks (+100) at St. Louis Rams (-1)
- Seattle continues to prove they're a dangerous home team, having just knocked off the mighty Ravens last Sunday afternoon. Can they pull off a win on the road though? I think so, this week at least against a Rams squad that should have been stuck with just their one win last week if not for a botched snap on what would have been a game-winning FG by the Browns. Pick: Seattle
Tennessee Titans (-115) at Atlanta Falcons (-6)
- Tennessee continues to take care of business against mediocre teams (four of their five wins have come against Denver, Cleveland, Indy, and most recently, Carolina). They've not fared so well against better competition though, and I think that continues for another week. Pick: Atlanta
San Diego Chargers at Chicago Bears (-3.5)
- It's do-or-die for the Chargers this weekend. Wait, no it isn't. They're in the AFC West where 9 wins will definitely take the division. Still, losers of four straight, San Diego will be playing like their season is on the line. The extra few days of rest thanks to playing on Thursday night in Week 10 should help too. Pick: San Diego.
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants (-4.5)
- Who knows what to make of the Eagles at this point. When you think they're done for good, they play a great game; when you think they're ready to get on a roll, they lay another egg. Maybe Michael Vick being out with a ribs injury will be a good thing? Win or lose, I think New York wins by a field goal if they do win. Pick: Philadelphia
Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots (-14.5)
Tom Brady vs. Tyler Palko. Do I need to say anything more? No, no I don't. Pick: New England.