Sports

Rams beat Packers; Cowboys, Patriots win


Los Angeles Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) during an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., Monday, Nov. 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)
Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford looks to pass against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara on Nov. 15. (Tony Avelar / Associated Press)

Week 12 of the 2021 NFL season begins on Thanksgiving with three games including the Chicago Bears taking on the Lions in Detroit. The Times’ NFL writer, Sam Farmer, examines this week’s matchups.

Farmer’s record last week: 7-8 (.467); season 100-64-1 (.610). Using point spreads with the scores Farmer predicted, the record against the spread last week would have been 8-7 (.533); season 80-83-2 (.491).

Teams on bye: Cardinals, Chiefs.

Times Pacific. Lines according to FanDuel (O/U = over/under):

Bears (3-7) at Lions (0-9-1)

Chicago Bears running back David Montgomery runs with the ball.
Chicago Bears running back David Montgomery runs with the ball during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday in Chicago. (Kamil Krzaczynski / Associated Press)

Thursday, 9:30 a.m.

TV: Channel 11.

Line: Bears by 3. O/U: 411/2.

With QB Justin Fields nursing a rib injury, Andy Dalton steps in and should do a decent job of running the Chicago offense. The Lions play hard most weeks, but they’re young and still winless.

Prediction: Bears 23, Lions 16

Raiders (5-5) at Cowboys (7-3)

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Ced Wilson gets set on the line for a play.

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Ced Wilson gets set on the line for a play against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday in Kansas City, Mo. (Peter Aiken / Associated Press)

Thursday, 1:30 p.m.

TV: Channel 2.

Line: Cowboys by 71/2. O/U: 511/2.

The Cowboys have to bounce back at home on Thanksgiving after scoring just nine points at Kansas City. The Raiders can bring a lot of pressure rushing four, but their offense isn’t scaring anyone.

Prediction: Cowboys 28, Raiders 20

Bills (6-4) at Saints (5-5)

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen passes the ball against the Indianapolis Colts.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen passes the ball against the Indianapolis Colts on Sunday in Orchard Park, NY. (Jeff Lewis / Associated Press)

Thursday, 5:15 p.m.

TV: Channel 4.

Line: Bills by 6. O/U: 45.

As Drew Brees analyzes the game for NBC, the Saints offense continues to struggle. Though clobbered by Indianapolis, Buffalo’s defense is performing at a higher level than its offense currently is.

Prediction: Bills 24, Saints 17

Steelers (5-4-1) at Bengals (6-4)

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow scrambles against the Las Vegas Raiders.

Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow scrambles against the Las Vegas Raiders on Sunday in Las Vegas. (Rick Scuteri / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 705.

Line: Bengals by 41/2. O/U: 45.

Steelers staged impressive rally but fell short against the Chargers and are still hurting on defense. In their pounding of the Raiders, the Bengals appeared to have figured out something.

Prediction: Bengals 27, Steelers 23

Jets (2-8) at Texans (2-8)

Houston Texans quarterback Tyrod Taylor plays against the Tennessee Titans.
Houston Texans quarterback Tyrod Taylor plays against the Tennessee Titans on Sunday in Nashville. (Wade Payne / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 706.

Line: Texans by 21/2. O/U: 441/2.

The Texans are coming off a shocking win over Tennessee, and Tyrod Taylor makes them better. Rookie Zach Wilson makes his return as starting quarterback for the Jets, but is that a good thing?

Prediction: Texans 23, Jets 13

Titans (8-3) at Patriots (7-4)

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones works against the Atlanta Falcons.

New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones works against the Atlanta Falcons on Nov. 18 in Atlanta. (Danny Karnik / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 707.

Line: Patriots by 61/2. O/U: 44.

We’re seeing how much Tennessee misses Derrick Henry, and the Titans need a banged-up A.J. Brown on the field. New England is playing as well as anybody in the league and it’s at home this week.

Prediction: Patriots 23, Titans 21

Falcons (4-6) at Jaguars (2-8)

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris celebrates after making a tackle.

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Roy Robertson-Harris celebrates after making a tackle against the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday in Jacksonville, Fla. (Phelan M. Ebenhack / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 708.

Line: Falcons by 21/2. O/U: 461/2.

The Jaguars beat Buffalo, they’ve been in a bunch of games, then got stomped by the 49ers last Sunday. Atlanta has been outscored the last two games, 68-3. Jacksonville holds on at home.

Prediction: Jaguars 21, Falcons 17

Buccaneers (7-3) at Colts (6-5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Ronald Jones stretches over the goal line for a six-yard rushing touchdown.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers running back Ronald Jones stretches over the goal line for a six-yard rushing touchdown past New York Giants cornerback Adoree’ Jackson (22) and free safety Xavier McKinney (29) during the first half on Monday in Tampa, Fla. (Phelan M. Ebenhack / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: Channel 11. DirecTV: 709.

Line: Buccaneers by 3. O/U: 521/2.

Could be the game of the week. The Colts’ Jonathan Taylor is coming off a five-touchdown game in which he ran the ball 32 times. Maybe he’s a little more tired versus a team getting Vita Vea back.

Prediction: Buccaneers 28, Colts 24

Panthers (5-6) at Dolphins (4-7)

Miami Dolphins defensive back Elijah Campbell reacts against the New York Jets.

Miami Dolphins defensive back Elijah Campbell reacts against the New York Jets on Sunday in East Rutherford, N.J. (Adam Hunger / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 710.

Line: Panthers by 2. O/U: 42.

Everybody is making a big deal about Cam Newton’s return but there’s a reason he was jobless for the first 10 weeks. He’s a liability as a passer. Carolina does have a talented defense, though.

Prediction: Dolphins 27, Panthers 23

Eagles (5-6) at Giants (3-7)

Philadelphia Eagles' Jalen Hurts plays during a game.

Philadelphia Eagles’ Jalen Hurts plays during a game on Sunday in Philadelphia. (Derik Hamilton / Associated Press)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 711.

Line: Eagles by 31/2. O/U: 46.

The Eagles ran for 242 yards against New Orleans, which had the No. 1 rush defense. That figures to present problems for the Giants, who haven’t faced a lot of dual-threat quarterbacks lately.

Prediction: Eagles 24, Giants 20

Chargers (6-4) at Broncos (5-5)

Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert is sacked by Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker Alex Highsmith.

Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert is sacked by Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker Alex Highsmith during second half action at SoFi Stadium on Sunday. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

Sunday, 1:05 p.m.

TV: Channel 2. DirecTV: 712.

Line: Chargers by 21/2. O/U: 471/2.

The Chargers did a good job stopping Najee Harris, but Pittsburgh’s offensive line isn’t very good. The Broncos are going to try to run, and they’re healthier after a week off. Tough divisional matchup.

Prediction: Broncos 28, Chargers 24

Rams (7-3) at Packers (8-3)

Green Bay Packers safety Adrian Amos greets inside linebacker De'Vondre Campbell.

Green Bay Packers safety Adrian Amos (31) greets inside linebacker De’Vondre Campbell (59) on the field prior to a game against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday in Minneapolis. (Stacy Bengs / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:25 p.m.

TV: Channel 11. DirecTV: 713.

Line: Rams by 1. O/U: 47.

Despite impressive records, there’s a hint of desperation in air for both. The Rams have had a week off to regroup. Hard to pick against Aaron Rodgers at home and Rams struggle against the run …

Prediction: Rams 31, Packers 27

Vikings (5-5) at 49ers (5-5)

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook carries the ball.

Minnesota Vikings running back Dalvin Cook carries the ball during the second half against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday in Minneapolis. (Stacy Bengs / Associated Press)

Sunday, 1:25 p.m.

TV: None. DirecTV: 714.

Line: 49ers by 3. O/U: 49.

Minnesota has rounded into one of the better teams in the NFC, as long as it can get in the habit of finishing strong. San Francisco’s secondary could have a problem with those Minnesota receivers.

Prediction: Vikings 27, 49ers 23

Browns (6-5) at Ravens (7-3)

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley looks to pass the ball.

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyler Huntley looks to pass the ball during the first half against the Chicago Bears on Sunday in Chicago. (Kamil Krzaczynski / Associated Press)

Sunday, 5:20 p.m.

TV: Channel 4.

Line: Ravens by 31/2. O/U: 451/2.

Cleveland is banged up and missing the mojo it had last year. Baltimore is significantly better. Of course, anything can happen in division games. This could be a big game for Lamar Jackson.

Prediction: Ravens 31, Browns 20

Seahawks (3-7) at Washington Football Team (4-6)

Washington Football Team quarterback Taylor Heinicke passes against the Carolina Panthers.

Washington Football Team quarterback Taylor Heinicke passes against the Carolina Panthers during the first half on Sunday in Charlotte, N.C. (Rusty Jones / Associated Press)

Monday, 5:15 p.m.

TV: ESPN.

Line: Seahawks by 1. O/U: 46.5.

Seattle is really struggling and can usually rely on Russell Wilson to make up for other roster deficiencies, but his injured finger has taken a toll on his play. Washington quietly getting it together.

Prediction: Washington 24, Seahawks 20

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.



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