NFL Week 12 picks, odds: Cowboys outscore Giants on Thanksgiving; backup Mike White helps Jets win

Dajani Dimes continues to put together winning weeks. Vegas knows it all, but it was great to capitalize on that with that Washington Commanders -3 line against the Houston Texans. We got bitten by the Kansas City Chiefs against the Los Angeles Chargers. Patrick Mahomes is 4-1 right away against Justin Herbert, but he’s only 1-4 against the spread!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. If you’re looking to act on games while your in-laws discuss politics, check out my complete guide, here.

Here’s a look at what I’m thinking this week. As always, thanks to the research team at CBS Sports for making me look smart.

All odds are provided by Caesar’s Sportsbook.

Top Five Picks ATS Record: 29-25-1
Overall ATS record: 88-70-6
Direct record: 106-57-1

Thursday, 4:30 p.m. ET (Fox, FuboTV)

Whatever faith I lost in the Cowboys after their loss to the Green Bay Packers, I regained after their 40-3 win over the Minnesota Vikings. Here’s how a legitimate contender responds after a loss. As for the Giants, they were shut out at home by the Detroit Lions on Sunday and suffered several notable injuries that will affect them in this short week.

This is a big spread, but I want to score points with the Cowboys. The Giants have lost two of their last three games after starting the season 6-1, and have strangely struggled on first downs, on both offense and defense. Daniel Jones’ unit averages 4.4 yards per game on first downs (second fewest in the NFL), while the defense allows an average of 6.9 yards per game on first downs (most in the NFL ). We saw what the Cowboys did to the Vikings last week. Tony Pollard recorded 189 yards from scrimmage and two touchdowns, while the defense didn’t allow a single touchdown.

These are two teams going in opposite directions. If Cooper Rush can beat the Giants by seven points on the road, what will Dak Prescott do at home?

The choice: Cowboy-10
expected score: Cowboys 31-17

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET (Fox, FuboTV)

Featured game | New York Jets vs. Chicago Bears

My two cents on Zach Wilson’s bench:

  • Zach Wilson was benched primarily due to comments he made following the loss to the New England Patriots.
  • Zach Wilson probably deserves to be benched just for his play.
  • Mike White will give this offense some juice.

The Jets were a 4.5-point favorite over the Bears prior to the news of Wilson’s bench. They are now six point favourites.

I said on Twitter before I even knew who the starting quarterback would be that the Jets are your best bet this week. They have a great team! All they need is a quarterback who can complete base passes, and I think White can. As for the Bears, Justin Fields has been on tears of late, but he hasn’t been able to lead Chicago to victory by himself. Now that he’s broken, I don’t expect that to change. Give me the Jets to cover at home.

The choice: Jet-6
expected score: Jets 24-16

Atlanta Falcons to Washington Commanders (-4.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET (Fox, FuboTV)

Featured game | Washington Commanders vs Atlanta Falcons

I don’t like to put five points as it’s an odd number, but why not ride the hot hand? If you follow my profitable column, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been all over the Commanders, picking them to upset the Packers and Indianapolis Colts straight to more money as best bets. That WAS -3 line from last week was too easy too.

Ron Rivera’s frown has been turned on its head since Taylor Heinicke took over at quarterback. The Commanders head coach used to drop F-bombs at press conferences and walk out of postgame media sessions. He now he shines on Zoom calls and talks about wearing Heinicke shirts. Washington should get another boost of momentum this week with the return of star pass rusher Chase Young, who we all know will be carrying the energy. Heinicke is 10-2-1 ATS in his last 13 starts. Give me the Commanders at home.

The choice: Commander-4.5
expected score: Commanders 28-21

Sunday, 1:00 PM ET (CBS, Paramount+)

Featured game | Miami Dolphins vs. Houston, Texas

I’m no beginner when it comes to double-digit spreads. I mean, how many people have taken the lowly Carolina Panthers to cover 13 points against a rested Baltimore Ravens team at home as a better bet like I did? Miami defeated the Cleveland Browns by 22 points in its last outing. What will the Dolphins do to Kyle Allen and the Texans coming home from a bye?

The Dolphins recorded three straight 30-point games, which is just shy of matching the longest streak in franchise history. The Texans, on the other hand, average just 15.9 points per game. Expect a blowout as the Texans try to secure the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.

The choice: Dolphin -13.5
expected score: Dolphins 35-14

Sunday, 4:05 pm ET (CBS, Paramount+)

Featured game | Arizona Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Chargers

The Cardinals’ vacation in Mexico City couldn’t have gone worse. One of their assistant coaches was fired for groping a woman, and then the team was destroyed by the San Francisco 49ers, 38-10. The Chargers are also coming off a loss, as they gave Mahomes and the Chiefs all they could handle before the leading MVP added another game-winning push to his résumé.

Did you know that Chargers are cover machines? Not only are they 7-3 ATS on the year, but they’re 9-4 ATS on the road as of 2021 (fourth-best in the NFL), which includes spread coverage in each of their last five road games. The Cardinals, meanwhile, are 4-10 ATS at home as of 2021, which is the worst in the NFL during that time. I think the Chargers have a great offense with Keenan Allen and Mike Williams, plus that Josh Palmer guy isn’t bad. In three points, I’ll take the Chargers.

The choice: Charger-3
expected score: Charger 28-24

More week 12 picks

Bills (-9.5) 30-20 on Lions
Patriots (+2.5) 23-21 over the Vikings
Raven 28-27 on Jaguar (+4)
Buccaneers (-3.5) 26-21 on Browns
Titans (+3) 27-24 on Bengals
Panthers (+2) 17-14 on the Broncos
Chiefs (-15.5) 30-13 on Rams
Seahawks 24-22 on Raiders (+3.5)
49ers 28-21 on Saints (+9.5)
Eagles (-6.5) 29-21 on Packers
Steelers (+2.5) 25-20 on Colts

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