NFL Week 18 predictions: Bears will give playoff-hopeful Packers fits
Home team in CAPS:
Bears (+3) over PACKERS
Chicago hasnt managed a straight-up win at Lambeau Field since 2015, but theres no time like the present. The Bears defense has evolved into quite the package, especially since midseason, and man for man, Justin Fields and the Bears havent matched up this favorably against the Pack in quite a while.
Eagles (-4.5) over GIANTS
Philly has safely secured a playoff berth, despite an upset loss to the Cardinals last week. Eagles could clinch the NFC East with a win and a Cowboys loss (or tie).
PATRIOTS (-1.5) over Jets
With both teams out of the playoff picture, these two squads are looking to finalize draft positioning, while mentally preparing for the offseason. Former Northwestern quarterback Trevor Siemian will go for Jets, with Zach Wilson sidelined in concussion protocol.
Bill Belichick likely will be coaching his final game with the Patriots on Sunday vs. the Jets. Getty Images## TITANS (+3.5) over Jaguars
With their seasoning advantage, look for the home-dog Titans to gain the point-spread advantage. QB Trevor Lawrence knows the way to carry the day for the Jags, if he can play through a shoulder ailment, but price seems right on Tennessee.
BENGALS (-7) over Browns
Cleveland is secure with AFC playoff positioning, so isnt required to risk Joe Flacco under fire in this affair. QB Jeff Driskel will start. Given the posted price, Cincy isnt cheap. Employ your best judgment.
LIONS (-3.5) over Vikings
Detroit is the superior option here, though if Minnesota manages a win and receives meaningful additional help, it could steal a wild-card spot. Lions could capture the No. 2 seed in the NFC should they win, and Dallas and Philadelphia both stumble.
Buccaneers (-4.5) over PANTHERS
The Buccaneers four-game victory run ended New Years Eve. That said, the NFC South title and a home playoff game can be assured, with a win at Carolina.
Buccaneers quarterback Baker Mayfield looks for an open receiver during the regular season game between the Saints. Icon Sportswire via Getty Images## Falcons (+3) over SAINTS
This is a tight fit, involving two seasoned NFC South competitors. Have long been fairly comfortable taking a fairly priced underdog in spots such as this, especially during the seasons final month. This gets very interesting, if the Panthers win.
Seahawks (-3) over CARDINALS
Kudos to the Cardinals for their sparkling upset win over the formidable Eagles. Alas, its a challenge for sides such as the Cards to stack up back-to-back shockers. Expect the Seahawks to find a way, even as road favorites.
Broncos (+2.5) over RAIDERS
Each of these sides figures to look forward to the upcoming draft with great eagerness, if an attractive top-drawer quarterback becomes available. Did somebody mention Washington QB Michael Penix Jr.? Broncs look to be underrated.
Chiefs (-3.5) over CHARGERS
Locked into the No. 3 seed in the AFC, Kansas City QB Patrick Mahomes reportedly will sit out this Week 18 clash, in favor of Blaine Gabbert. Should the Chargers makes the most of their chances in this spot, so be it.
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Cowboys (-13) over COMMANDERS
Dallas has been on a flat-out rampage and can snare the NFC East crown with another win on the road. The Commanders are expected to look to provoke grief with Sam Howell under center.
49ERS (-4) over Rams
Can only note that a number of name starters on both sides are expected to play first halves, rather than play the full route, so tread cautiously, unless youre narrowing your views to first halves, only. Caution urged.
DOLPHINS (+2.5) over Bills
Both sides boast postseason credentials, but as we type this, we remain unsure exactly who is going to reign as the AFC East champs. Dolphins were hammered when they went up against the Ravens, and possibly will be without WR Jaylen Waddle and RB Raheem Mostert.
Last week: 7-7 Season: 99-106-9
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