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November 23, 2017

Larry’s Losers Week 12

by Larry Leek

Larry's Losers

First WOYSM would like to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving Holiday. Just when you think you’ve got it figured out, you DON’T. What was this Sports Mind thinking? Last weeks 9-5 record could have been worse but it’s a definite step down from the results of the 3-weeks prior. It brings the overall season total to 99-60. Lets just hope last weeks record is no indication of a another downward trend

As teams begin to move closer to wrapping up playoff spots you SHOULD see the divide begin to grow wider between those teams and the also ran’s. Whats uncertain however, are those teams on the bubble. Teams who’s season are in question, like the Buffalo Bills, Baltimore Ravens, Tennessee Titans, Dallas Cowboys, Atlanta Falcons and Detroit Lions. ALL have to begin to step up or they will find themselves on the outside looking in.

Lets get to this weeks (HOPEFULLY) Losers….

Thursday, November 23rd

4:30 PM ET CBS

Chargers

(4-6, 2-3 Away)

Cowboys

(5-5, 2-3 Home)

AT&T Stadium
Arlington, TX
The LA Chargers have split their last 4-games but they managed to BLOW out the Bills last week 54-24. Chargers QB, Phillip Rivers showed no ill effects from last weeks hit to the head. Other than the Bills however, the Chargers other 3-wins have been against teams with losing records. The way MY Cowboys have been playing without RB, Ezekiel Elliott, LT, Tyron Smith and MLB, Sean Lee you can’t help but wonder WHY they pay all this $$ to backups who simply CANNOT do their JOBS when asked to perform. Back when I was younger, Smith & Lee would have played with injuries that have caused them to STAND around on the sidelines. Dallas has lost their last 2-games without the services of Elliott & Smith and they only had Lee for the 1st half against the Falcons, they lost last week to the Eagles 37-9 and the way they are playing they may as well forget the playoffs and enter the draft derby, Does that mean the Cowboys will lose this one TOO?
Larry’s loser: Los Angeles.
12:30 PM ET FOX

Vikings

(8-2, 3-1 Away)

Lions

(6-4, 2-3 Home)

Ford Field
Detroit, MI
This SHOULD turn out to be the BEST game of the Turkey day, it is certainly the best one on paper. Minnesota comes into this game with a 6-game winning streak, they have also won 7 of their last 8, including last weeks domination over the upstart Rams 24-7, perhaps their best win of the season since 5 of their 8 wins were against teams with losing records.  They are still however, the odds on favorite to win the division, but they don’t want to have a stutter step against a good Detroit team who is riding a 3-game win streak. The Vikings are 3-1 on the road, but Detroit hasn’t fared so well at home at 2-3. Another thing to consider, much like the Vikings, all of the Lions three latest wins have been against teams with losing records.
Larry’s Loser: Detroit.
8:30 PM ET NBC

Giants

(2-8, 1-4 Away)

Redskins

(4-6, 2-3 Home)

FedEx Field
Landover, MD
46° F
Just when you thought the NY Giants were dead they up and surprise everyone by winning one. They especially shocked last weeks opponent, the Chiefs who were handed their 2nd straight loss, 12-9. Over the last 4-weeks the Giants have averaged a dismal 13.5 ppg. on offense and even though they managed to beat a struggling Chiefs team it don’t mean they’ll beat a struggling Washington team that has lost their last 2-games including 4 of their last 5. They laid yet another egg last week, losing to the Saints 34-31. Even though they played the Saints tough a loss is still a loss and 4-6 the Redskins can ill afford to lose any at all. Indications are, well to be honest there are NO indications, so you just have to go with your gut feeling on this one.
Larry’s Loser: New York.

Sunday, November 26th

1:00 PM ET FOX

Buccaneers

(4-6, 1-4 Away)

Falcons

(5-4, 2-2 Home)

Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Atlanta, GA
4-6 Tampa Bay has been on FIRE winning their last 2-games right? Well NOT exactly, they were against the Jets and the Dolphins last week, which they won 30-20, prior to that they had lost 5-straight and 6 of 7. Another team who finally got back on winning track, the Falcons who beat the Cowboys 27-7, prior to last weeks bye. The Falcons had lost 4 of 5 games before getting the win. Tampa Bay is 1-4 on the road while the Falcons are 2-2 at home. This game could be very pivotal for both teams as far as if Atlanta will stay in the playoff race and IF the Buccaneers can get back in the draft derby. It should work out well for BOTH teams.
Larry’s Loser: Tampa bay.
1:00 PM ET CBS

Browns

(0-10, 0-4 Away)

Bengals

(4-6, 2-2 Home)

Paul Brown Stadium
Cincinnati, OH
You want to talk about an UGLY game, this is certainly one you can talk about. The only bright spot for 0-10 Cleveland is the fact that they lead the pack in the draft derby race (YET AGAIN). We all know how many they have lost in a row but what we don’t know is IF they will ever get a win this season, they lost again last week to the Jaguars 19-7. They have averaged 13.4 ppg. over their last seven so it’s no wonder they can’t win one. Cincinnati hasn’t exactly impressed anyone this year and every Bengal fan has to be asking the question, “Is this the year head coach, Marvin Lewis FINALLY gets the ax?” The Bengals have lost 2 of their last 3 games but they managed to get the win last week over a vulnerable Broncos team 20-17.  This game should however, be a boost of confidence for Lewis keeping his job (Not).
Larry’s Loser: Cleveland.
1:00 PM ET FOX

Titans

(6-4, 2-3 Away)

Colts

(3-7, 2-3 Home)

Lucas Oil Stadium
Indianapolis, IN
One thing these two teams have in common, neither can beat the Steelers other than that, Tennessee is still in the running for a playoff spot but they need to get back on the winning track after dropping last weeks game to the Steelers 40-17. The Titans had won four straight prior to the loss. Indianapolis has lost 4 of their last 5 games prior to last weeks bye, they lost their last game however, against the, you guessed it, Steelers 20-17. The Titans are 2-3 on the road while the Colts are 2-3 at home, but you got to think that Tennessee wants it more since they have more to play for.
Larry’s Loser: Indianapolis. 
1:00 PM ET CBS

Bills

(5-5, 1-4 Away)

Chiefs

(6-4, 3-1 Home)

Arrowhead Stadium
Kansas City, MO
 Buffalo is beginning to look like their old (recent) selves. After starting the season 5-2, they have lost their last 3-games, including last weeks debacle to the Chargers 54-24. The Bills defense looked great early on but over the last 3-games they have yielded 135 pts. with an average of 45 ppg. Just when it couldn’t get any worse they may have finally got a break. They play a Kansas City team this week that is VERY similar to the Bills only the exact opposite in one way. The Chiefs started the season 5-0 but have since lost 4 of their last 5 games, they lost their last game to the hapless Giants 12-9. Their offense has managed only 69 pts. in those 4-losses for an average of  a measly 17.3 ppg. So playing each other may just be what both teams need, the question is which team needs it the MOST?
Larry’s Loser: Buffalo
1:00 PM ET CBS

Dolphins

(4-6, 2-3 Away)

Patriots

(8-2, 3-2 Home)

Gillette Stadium
Foxboro, MA
Miami can now officially say they are playing for draft picks, next year OR whatever, at 4-6 and having lost their last 4-games, especially when you are about to play one of the hottest teams in the NFL, things just don’t look good. The Dolphins lost their game last week to the Buccaneers 30-20 and that don’t make it look any better. New England appears to be running on ALL cylinders as they always do this time of year. The Patriots have won 6-straight games and 8 of their last 9, they stomped the Raiders last week 33-8. If you look at New England’s remaining schedule its a good possibility they could win out with the Steelers looking to be their toughest opponent. It does however, ALWAYS make it much easier when 6 of your games are against AFC east opponents every year ha ha.
Larry’s Loser: Miami.
1:00 PM ET FOX

Panthers

(7-3, 4-1 Away)

Jets

(4-6, 3-2 Home)

MetLife Stadium
East Rutherford, NJ
 7-3 Carolina has been looking lately like the team that made the SB, the Panthers have won their last 3-games including their last game against the Dolphins 45-21, they had their bye week last week and perhaps the week off will make them even better.  unpredictable New York can up and surprise everyone by winning a game every now and then even though they have lost 3 of their last 4. They did actually have a three game winning streak earlier in the season. The Jets had their bye week last week and they lost to the Buccaneers 15-10 in their last game. The Panthers are 4-1 on the road while the Jets are 3-2 at home. Regardless you just have to believe the better QB wins this game.
Larry’s Loser: New York.
1:00 PM ET FOX

Bears

(3-7, 1-3 Away)

Eagles

(9-1, 5-0 Home)

Lincoln Financial Field
Philadelphia, PA
 This game certainly has all the makings of a mismatch. Chicago comes into this game having lost their last 3-games, including last weeks game against the Lions 27-24. Even though Bears QB, Mitchell Trubisky has looked impressive this season, the team still needs more weapons for Trubisky and also even though they have only won 3-games this season, they were some nice wins over the Steelers, Ravens and Panthers. Philadelphia has now won their last 8-games and they have also wrapped up the NFC East with NO challengers in sight, They manhandled a hobbled Cowboys team last week 37-9 and are also 5-0 at home while the Bears are 1-3 on the road. Expect more of the same from both teams.
Larry’s Loser: Chicago.
4:05 PM ET FOX

Seahawks

(6-3, 3-2 Away)

49ers

(1-9, 1-4 Home)

Levi’s Stadium
Santa Clara, CA
Seattle had won four straight games before losing 2 of their last 3, including last weeks game to the Falcons 34-31. They lost starting CB, Shaquill Griffin last week to a concussion and Byron Maxwell filled in and is expected to fill in again this week. San Francisco found themselves dropping to 2nd place in the draft derby after they finally won their first game of the season 2-weeks ago, beating the Giants 31-21, they had their bye last week. Perhaps the 49ers have more confidence now that they finally have a win under their belt BUT The Seahawks SHOULD get back on the winning track this week.
Larry’s Loser: San Francisco.
4:25 PM ET CBS

Broncos

(3-7, 0-4 Away)

Raiders

(4-6, 2-3 Home)

Oakland Coliseum
Oakland, CA
Two teams that have played themselves right out of the playoff race are the Broncos and Raiders. Denver has now lost their last 6-games and GM, John Elway  who recently called the Broncos soft, has decided that the Broncos need to give rookie QB, Paxton Lynch his first start. You can pretty much consider this a desperation move by Elway as many feel the rookie QB is not ready. Denver lost their game last week to the Bengals 20-17. 4-6 Oakland is pretty much in the same losing boat as the Broncos, they have lost 3 of their last 5 games and were beaten soundly by the Patriots last week 33-8. Even though the Broncos are still searching for their franchise QB the Raiders have theirs in 4th year QB, Derek Carr. Carr hasn’t had a bad year, he has thrown for 2,191 Yds. with 14 TD’s and 9 Ints. for a 88.2 rating (53.4 qbr.) so he could stand some improvement. The Broncos are 0-4 on the road while Oakland is 2-3 at home which could be the key factor in deciding the winner of this game.
Larry’s Loser: Denver.
4:25 PM ET CBS

Saints

(8-2, 4-1 Away)

Rams

(7-3, 3-2 Home)

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Los Angeles, CA
This game should be a dandy between two teams vying for playoff positioning. After starting the season 0-2, RED HOT New Orleans has now won 8-straight including last weeks win over the Redskins 34-31 and they show NO signs of slowing down, During their 8-game win streak the Saints have averaged 32.8 ppg. while their defense has surrendered an average of only 16.3 ppg. which is definitely the formula for success. Los Angeles is having a similar season to the Saints, they had won four games in a row and 6 of their last 7 before losing to the Vikings last week 24-7. Even though many experts were down on 2nd year QB, Jared Goff during his rookie campaign it’s quite clear after what we’ve seen this season that the Rams have their franchise QB in Goff. So far this season Goff has 2,610 passing yds, with 16 TD’s and only 4-Ints. his qbr. is 54.4 with a 98.9 rating. New Orleans is 4-1 on the road while the Rams are 3-2 at home but it’s hard to ignore how special this season has been for the Saints OR Rams but someone HAS to lose.
Larry’s Loser: Los Angeles.
4:25 PM ET CBS

Jaguars

(7-3, 4-1 Away)

Cardinals

(4-6, 2-2 Home)

U of Phoenix Stadium
Glendale, AZ
Another team thats planning on making the post season is JacksonvilleThe 7-3 Jaguars impressive defense has looked good at times this season and have helped keep them in playoff contention. In their seven wins the defense has only given up an average of 7.7 ppg. which is excellent but in their losses they have given up 29.0 ppg. so QUITE a difference. The Jags. have won 4-straight games and 5 of their last 6. they beat the winless Browns last week 19-7. Arizona on the other hand looks to be completely OUT of the playoff picture but if things continue the way they are going they should get a pretty nice draft slot. They have lost 3 of their last 4, including last weeks game to the hobbled Texans 31-21. The thing is the Cardinals definitely have the talent but have underachieved this season. Jacksonville is 4-1 on the road while Arizona is 2-2 at home. If the Cardinals defense had been performing up to their potential this would have the makings of a GREAT game, Oh well.
Larry’s Loser: Arizona.
8:30 PM ET NBC

Packers

(5-5, 2-2 Away)

Steelers

(8-2, 3-1 Home)

Heinz Field
Pittsburgh, PA
You want to talk about the makings of a GREAT game, before Green Bay QB, Aaron Rodgers season ending injury this one would have had ALL the hype. Now however, the Packers are just trying to survive the season and not doing too well at it. The Packers have lost 4 of 5 games since Rodgers departure including last weeks shutout loss to the Ravens 23-0 and it appears that their playoff hopes are a thing of the past at least for this season. Pittsburgh began the season playing inconsistently and had QB, Ben Roethlisberger questioning his future, now Roethlisberger seems to be suffering from short term memory. The 8-2 Steelers have now won their last 5-games and appear to be in a head on collision with the Patriots for the AFC crown. The Packers are 2-2 on the road and 1-1 since Rodgers injury. The Steelers are 3-1 at home and they should be able to stretch that by another game this week with NO problem.
Larry’s Loser: Green Bay.

Monday, November 27th

8:30 PM ET ESPN

Texans

(4-6, 1-3 Away)

Ravens

(5-5, 2-2 Home)

M&T Bank Stadium
Baltimore, MD
Well this game don’t look very good on paper and is what this Sports Mind would call a toss up. Houston has saw their season fall by the wayside due to some of their key players on both sides of the ball falling to injury. The Texans have lost 3 of their last 4 games, but they did manage to beat the Cardinals last week 31-21. They should get a stiffer test this week however, when they play the Ravens on the road. 5-5 Baltimore has the opportunity to get above .500 if they can get the win. They have won 2 of their last 3 games, beating the Packers last week 23-0. Houston is 1-3 on the road while the Ravens are 2-2 at home but If you look at the Ravens remaining schedule they have an excellent chance of winning at least 4 of their last 6 games, which would give them a winning record and possibly a shot at a wildcard spot.
Larry’s Loser: Houston.

 

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