Fourth and Long – Week 13 Thanksgiving Day Free Picks

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By Mike Ivcic, UltimateCapper Contributing Writer

Turkey Day is here, so let’s make our first three downs the three Thanksgiving games, fourth down our playoff situation, and skip the long. Think of it as fasting before your gluttonous consumption of food on Thanksgiving!


First Down
Green Bay Packers @ Detroit Lions
Thu, 12:30pm, FOX
Line: Lions by 6
Last chance Lions – I’ve picked you for three straight weeks assuming you’ll finally get your act together and win a big game. If you don’t do it here, I’m out on you as a legitimate playoff contender, no matter what Chicago does this week. You have to come through against Matt Flynn… right?
Pick: Detroit 27, Green Bay 20

Second Down
Oakland Raiders @ Dallas Cowboys
Thu, 8:30pm, CBS
Line: Cowboys by 9
Assuming Leon Lett stays away from any blocked field goals, Dallas should be good here. Dinner time!
Pick: Dallas 31, Oakland 17

Third Down
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens
Thu, 8:30pm, NBC
Line: Ravens by 3
The Steelers are coming on hard and strong, making a late-season push to the playoffs by winning their last three games. Still, I can’t imagine that this once-epic rivalry doesn’t have one more primetime clash left in it, especially considering both teams are now tied for the last AFC Wild Card spot. I ultimately see the Ravens as a more complete team – Pittsburgh’s offensive line and defensive secondary just seem very weak – so I’ll take a game winning field goal for the Baltimore win and cover.
Pick: Baltimore 21, Pittsburgh 17


Fourth Down
If The Playoffs Started Today…

1. Denver Broncos (9-2)
2. New England Patriots (8-3)
3. Indianapolis Colts (7-4)
4. Cincinnati Bengals (7-4)
5. Kansas City Chiefs (9-1)
6. Tennessee Titans (5-6)
Notes: Denver wins the first seed over Kansas City because of head-to-head victory. Indianapolis wins the third seed over Cincinnati because of better conference record (Ind 5-2, Cin 5-3). Tennessee wins the sixth seed because… well, because I said so. Just trust me, really. They win the tiebreakers over Pittsburgh (who won the division tiebreaker over Baltimore because of head-to-head win), New York (who won the division tiebreaker over Miami because of better division record) and San Diego because they beat all three teams. For full disclosure, 7-11 are Pittsburgh, Baltimore, San Diego, New York, and Miami, in that order. And now I need a nap.

1. Seattle Seahawks (10-1)
2. New Orleans Saints (9-2)
3. Detroit Lions (6-5)
4. Dallas Cowboys (6-5)
5. Carolina Panthers (8-3)
6. San Francisco 49’ers (7-4)
Notes: Detroit wins the third seed over Chicago because of head-to-head victory (2-0) and over Dallas because of head-to-head victory. Dallas wins the fourth seed over Philadelphia because of head-to-head victory. San Francisco wins the sixth seed over Arizona because of head-to-head victory.

Happy Thanksgiving!



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