While they might not have been able to forecast a rare tie, the dogs were remarkably right again. Picking the topsy-turvy NFC North has been difficult this season, but Cooper and Izzy each gobbled up a St. Louis Rams win and used it to their advantage in the standings. Two 7-5 weeks looked very solid for them as the season winds down.
A 6-6 week kept the author on top, however, by a margin seemingly slimmer than a whisker. It will be a fight to the finish the rest of the way. This week, the dogs are unanimously picking Arizona, San Francisco, Tampa Bay and San Diego. Who else to they like? Pooch's Picks is ready for a post-holiday projection.
Jacksonville at Cleveland: In a relatively boring game of late season also-rans, the battle will be to see who messes up their draft position worse. Cooper thinks it's Cleveland, while Izzy bets on Jacksonville. Somehow, the Browns will win thanks to home crowd. C: Cleveland, I: Jacksonville, M: Cleveland
Tennessee at Indianapolis: The Titans visit the Colts in another battle of teams from the AFC South. Cooper says the Titans win, while Izzy thinks the Colts rebound after a big loss. It's Indianapolis' week to get healthy. C: Tennessee, I: Indianapolis, M: Indianapolis
Minnesota at New York Jets: Had the Vikings just played average football much of the season, they would have hung around the NFC North race in earnest, Instead, they're heading backwards, and that continues in New York. Izzy is picking Minnesota to win, while Cooper thinks the Jets get the job done at home. C: New York Jets, I: Minnesota, M: New York Jets
Arizona at Philadelphia: The Cardinals are quietly playing good football at 7-4, leading both dogs to pick them on the road in Philadelphia. Though they're playing good defense, the Cardinals' offense has been playing well, too. That proves to be the difference. C: Arizona, I: Arizona, M: Arizona
Tampa Bay at Carolina: Break up the Buccaneers, who are rolling along after winning their last three games. Each dog things that continues on the road in what would be a shocking upset of the favored Panthers. Cam Newton is too good, though, and has other plans. Tampa Bay should have lost last week. C: Tampa Bay, I: Tampa Bay, M: Carolina
New England at Houston: The Texans' bad season gets worse with a visit from the Patriots, who win easily. Izzy is on board with Bill Belichick, but Cooper thinks the Texans forge an upset. C: Houston, I: New England, M: New England
Atlanta at Buffalo: Both teams are heading in wrong directions, so this is another case of a draft pick being thrown away. Cooper thinks the Bills get it done at home, while Izzy thinks the Falcons are the team to beat on the road. Buffalo will be tough in the cold for Matt Ryan and his dinged up team. C: Buffalo, I: Atlanta, M: Buffalo
St. Louis at San Francisco: The Rams have come on strong of late, and are trying to inch back into wild card contention minus Sam Bradford. That streak stops with the tough defense of the 49ers, and the dogs agree completely. C: San Francisco, I: San Francisco, M: San Francisco
Denver at Kansas City: In a rematch of a game contested a few weeks ago, the Broncos must visit the tough defense of the Chiefs. Cooper thinks Kansas City wins at home and gets revenge, while Izzy thinks the Broncos win again and bounce back from the stunner last Sunday night. Alex Smith and the defense have a big day, making the Broncos look vulnerable. C: Kansas City, I: Denver, M: Kansas City
Cincinnati at San Diego: After the Chargers shocked the Chiefs with a late win last week, plenty might be buying into Phillip Rivers again. Both dogs are on board this week with a win over the Bengals. That's a good pick, and the Chargers get the job done at home. C: San Diego, I: San Diego, M: San Diego
New York Giants at Washington: The loser probably takes a significant hit in their hopes to earn a wild card or win the NFC East. Cooper says the Giants win, while Izzy picks the Redskins to comeback with a victory. The Giants have too much defense, though, and win big as a result. C: New York Giants, I: Washington, M: New York Giants
New Orleans at Seattle (Monday Night): This game could be a shootout reminiscent of a 2010 wild card game. Izzy likes the Seahawks in front of the 12th man at home, while Cooper thinks the high-flying offense of the Saints pulls out a major win. Seattle is too tough in front of the home folks, and they get a needed win in the wake of some turmoil. C: New Orleans, I: Seattle, M: Seattle
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