Here are my Week 11 picks with confidence level selections. The picks with a confidence level of 1-5 will be available for all NFL Pickwatch readers.
The picks with a 6+ confidence level, a group of selections that have netted a 120-45-1 record over the past two seasons (including a 37-17-1 mark this year), will be available exclusively to Pickwatch Pro subscribers.
Pickwatch Pro is a great service that allows subscribers to download the best expert data in the industry, see team-by-team winners for every expert, and provides access to Upset Watch, which has been the ultimate cheatcode to beat the sportsbooks over the last five years. Combine those elements with the top level of my weekly picks and it makes for a must-subscribe service for anyone serious about betting.
Indianapolis Colts at Buffalo Bills
KC’s pick: Buffalo | Confidence level: 1
These are two of the hottest teams in the NFL, as the Bills have won six of their last eight and the Colts have tallied wins in five of their last seven. Both clubs are doing it via powerful offenses and opportunistic defenses, as Indianapolis has scored 25+ points in six of its last seven and posted 2+ takeaways in all but three games this year, while Buffalo has scored 31+ points on six occasions and has racked up 3+ takeaways in five contests. This may be the closest game on the Week 11 board and could be turned by a single big play on either side, so the home field tiebreaker will be put this pick into the Buffalo column.
Washington Football Team at Carolina Panthers
KC’s pick: Carolina | Confidence level: 4
Washington is coming off one of the biggest upsets of the 2021 season, as they held Tampa Bay to only 19 points and 273 yards of offense. Carolina nearly matched that feat with a huge road upset win over a banged-up Arizona squad. Of these two performances, the Panthers defensive dominance is easier to buy into, as Carolina has racked up 3+ sacks on five occasions and held six foes to under 20 points, including their last three. By contrast, the Football Team is just now getting its defensive house in order and has had a lot of coverage issues this season. The Panthers also get the emotional boost that comes from Cam Newton returning home to face his old coach, so Carolina is the preferred option here.
Baltimore Ravens at Chicago Bears
KC’s pick: Baltimore | Confidence level: 3
It’s hard to believe how poorly the Ravens defense has played of late. Since Week 5, Baltimore has allowed 513 yards to the Colts, gave up 520 yards and 41 points to the Bengals, let the Vikings rack up 31 points, and just allowed the mediocre Dolphins offense to post 350 yards. That could be an issue against a Chicago club that found its groove against the Steelers in Week 9, posting a season high 414 offensive yards and 27 points. The Bears ground game has been in gear for a while, with 136+ rushing yards in six straight contests, but unfortunately their rush defense has been as bad as the offense has been good, as they have allowed 145+ yards on the ground in three of the past four. The Ravens will want to get their rushing attack back in gear after leaning on the pass too much in the loss to the Dolphins, so they get this pick, but by a smaller than expected margin.
Detroit Lions at Cleveland Browns
KC’s pick: Cleveland | Confidence level: 1
Dan Campbell has wanted his team to play a physical, kneecap-biting brand of football all year and that mindset showed up big time when Campbell involved himself in the offensive play calling against Pittsburgh. Detroit ran for a season high 229 yards and wore the Steelers defense out with a persistent smashmouth approach. That could go quite far against a Cleveland club that just allowed 184 rushing yards to New England in last week’s blowout loss to the Patriots. The Browns are also in a bad way on offense, as they have scored 17 or fewer points in five of the past seven games. This also has the makings of a trap game for Cleveland, as the Browns face Baltimore in Week 12 and then have a bye in Week 13. It will not be the least bit shocking if Detroit pulls off the upset in this contest, but the talent advantage is still very far in Cleveland’s favor, so the Browns are the selection.
Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings
KC’s pick: Green Bay | Confidence level: 4
Aaron Rodgers understandably draws most of the attention for the Packers, but don’t overlook just how dominant the Green Bay defense has been this year. They just gave Russell Wilson the first shutout of his NFL career and have allowed 14 or fewer points in four of the past five games. Minnesota’s defense did step up its game last week against the Chargers, but the Vikings allowed 919 offensive yards and 59 first downs in the two weeks prior to that. The most concerning part of that was the 247 rushing yards Minnesota allowed against Baltimore, a factor that Green Bay will test with their road grading rusher A.J. Dillon. That factors should be enough to land this pick in the Packers column.
Miami Dolphins at New York Jets
KC’s pick: Miami | Confidence level: 4
The Jets defense has been beyond abysmal this season. New York has allowed 175 points over the past four games, but the numbers actually get even worse than that upon closer examination. The Jets have allowed 430+ offensive yards in five of the past six games, 26+ first downs in five of the past six, and 399 rushing yards over the past two weeks. Take away the two meaningless turnovers their defense generated last week after New York was down 38-3 and the Jets have taken the ball away only five times all year. The Jets are also putting Joe Flacco under center. Miami is a flawed club in many ways, but their issues are nowhere near as myriad as New York’s, so the Dolphins are the option here.
Cincinnati Bengals at Las Vegas Raiders
KC’s pick: Cincinnati | Confidence level: 3
Marty Schottenheimer said years ago that the key to beating the Silver and Black was to keep playing for four quarters, as the Raiders wouldn’t keep the effort level going for 60 minutes. That certainly seemed to be the case last week against the Chiefs, as the Raiders defense started to look disinterested in the game after Kansas City got out to a lead. That’s not a good sign at any time, but it could be a big issue against a talented Bengals offense. Las Vegas could also be looking ahead to its Thanksgiving Day clash at Dallas, so the Bengals are the pick in this one.
Dallas Cowboys at Kansas City Chiefs
KC’s pick: Kansas City | Confidence level: 1
This has all the hallmarks of a shootout contest. Dallas is coming off a 43-3 destruction of Atlanta that was probably the Cowboys best game of the year. Kansas City could say the same about its 41-14 road win over divisional rival Las Vegas, as the Chiefs offense looked to be back to its big play ways. Both teams have defenses that make and give up big plays, so that element cancels itself out. The Cowboys may have a bit more weaponry in their passing game, but the Chiefs defense is playing at its best level of the season of late, so those also nullify each other. Add it up and this is a coin toss game, so the Chiefs get this one via home field tiebreaker.
Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks
KC’s pick: Arizona | Confidence level: 4
This pick assumes that Kyler Murray will be back under center for the Cardinals, but also assumes that DeAndre Hopkins may end up missing this contest. Murray is certainly important to Arizona’s offense, but the Kliff Kingsbury system is actually a lot more run-heavy than generally though, as the Cardinals have tallied 144+ rushing yards in four of the past seven games. Seattle’s offensive woes weren’t just a one-game anomaly due to Russell Wilson being rusty, as that platoon had dating back to before Wilson was hurt. The Seahawks defense is playing much better of late after struggling mightily early on this season, but it won’t be enough to vault this club ahead of Arizona, so take the Cardinals in this contest.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Los Angeles Chargers
KC’s pick: Los Angeles | Confidence level: 3
Going to a tie with a feisty Lions team that has taken multiple teams to the limit this year wasn’t the worst part of last week’s game for Pittsburgh. The real issue is that the Steelers just aren’t playing their brand of football. Ben Roethlisberger’s lack of vertical passing has made the Black and Gold operate a dink and dunk offense and the defense was doing far too much grabbing and not enough tackling against the Lions. Both teams are dealing with COVID-19 issues right now, but the Steelers are in a much worse way injury-wise and must travel to the west coast for this one, so the Chargers are the selection.
KC’s 6+ confidence level picks, a group of selections that have gone 120-45-1 over the past two seasons (including a 37-17-1 mark this year), are available exclusively to Pickwatch Pro subscribers.