NFL Week 12: Potential Upsets
It was only a matter of time before the favorites got the best of the books and in Week 11 they were 8-4-3, improving their season-long mark to 82-74-6. But the four underdogs that did cover last week all won outright, as the season tally for outright-pup improved to 51 on the year.
With 14 games on the slate, there are two division rivals that look awfully tempting as underdogs, and could win outright given their specific situations.
On Sunday, the Chargers are catching +5 at Bovada from the Chiefs in a crucial AFC West battle for both teams. San Diego arrives in Kansas City on a three-game losing streak, after it opened the season winning four of its first seven games. Now at 4-6, it would appear winning out is a must if the Bolts want a shot at a wild card. This is their fourth road game in five contests, but the last one until their final road game of the season, Dec. 12 in Denver.
Three of their four final home games are winnable with the season finale coming against these Chiefs. A win Sunday would provide a wealth of confidence with the Bengals and Giants coming to town the next two weeks. With the Chiefs, this is your classic sandwich game, as they played in Denver last week and suffered their first loss of the season. Guess who's on deck next week - Denver. It's hard to imagine the Chiefs with 100 percent concentration on the Bolts. San Diego is worth a look.
The other divisional rivalry is out of the AFC North, with the Pittsburgh Steelers catching a point in Cleveland. Dare we say it, but at 4-6, we wouldn't necessarily count Mike Tomlin's boys out of the division race. Granted, there are two tough games on the horizon - this one and next week at Baltimore - but win them both and at 6-6, you're looking good with the Dolphins, Bengals, Packers, and Browns left to play.
And this isn't a matter of Cleveland being favored cause it's better, the Browns are favored cause the Steelers are having a down year. The Steelers' defense has the potential to be tough. Of their 10 games, they've only allowed more than 27 points in three of those games. Toss that trio out and the stop unit is allowing an average of 16.5 points per game. Don't be surprised if Pittsburgh steals this one.