Fearless Rick's NFL Football Picks - Week 16 late games

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WEEK 16 NFL Picks- late games

All times Eastern

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Indianapolis at Oakland (-4, 53), 4:05 pm (CBS) - Possibly the most meaningful game of the weekend pits the Raiders, who have clinched a playoff spot but nothing beyond that, against the 7-7 Colts, who are still breathing after ripping up the Vikings, 34-6, last week.

Another must-win for Indy means that there may be more than a share of fourth down opportunities on both sides of the ball, but the Raiders have more moxie than anybody is willing to admit. This will be yet another stepping stone for the incomparable Derek Carr and the upstart Raiders and they are unlikely to disappoint the home crowd. Thus, the Colts will be officially eliminated from post-season play.

Coin Flip: Indianapolis

Rick's Pick: Raiders 31 Colts 17

San Francisco at Los Angeles (-3, 40 1/2), 4:25 pm (FOX) - This is the unofficial garbage bowl for the NFC West, a game to be ignored and avoided. The Ram offense has struggled badly all season, having scored just 27 points in its last three games, making a 49er win a distinct possiblity, despte their 1-13 mark.

Coin Flip: Los Angeles

Rick's Pick: 49ers 20 Rams 17

Arizona at Seattle (-9, 43 1/2), 4:25 pm (FOX) - With the Seahawks having already clinched the division, this is nothing more than a grudge match for the Cardinals, a team which has flopped badly this season. at 5-8-1, the tie being their week seven, 6-6 overtime fiasco the last time they met up with Seattle. Those nine points the Seahawks are handing the Cardinals may come into play and it's not unreasonable to envision Arizona pulling out all stops in a face-saving effort.

Coin Flip: Seattle

Rick's Pick: Seahawks 21 Cardinals 16

Cincinnati at Houston (-2 1/2, 41), 8:25 pm (NFLN) - At 5-8-1, the season is officially ended for the Bengals, a team that has won just twice in the past six weeks, beating the Eagles and Browns, two of the worst teams in the NFL. While the Texans aren't exactly world-beaters, they may be able to take advantage of a Bengal squad that may be paying more attention to holiday and vacation plans than X's and O's.

Coin Flip: Cincinnati

Rick's Pick: Texans 28 Bengals 9

Sunday, December 25

Baltimore at Pittsburgh (-4 1/2, 44), 4:30 pm (NFLN) - One of just two Sunday games happens to be a pivotal divisional clash between two longtime rivals in the AFC North. The Steelers can wrap up the division with a win, but the Ravens aren't exactly the team they'd like to be hosting at this juncture, as over the years, Baltimore has been a thorn in the side of Pittsburgh.

In week nine, Baltimore got the nod over the Steelers at home with a 21-14 victory, and they've lost only to Dallas and New England since then, so they're in the cat-bird seat for certain. Knowing the Steelers better than any other team in the league, the Ravens are unlikely to go down easily and could tie Pittsburgh for the division lead with a victory, making the week's final season all-important for both teams.

Coin Flip: Baltimore

Rick's Pick: Ravens 20 Steelers 17

Denver at Kansas City (-4, 38), 8:30 pm (NBC) - The Broncos have collapsed since their bye in week 11, going 1-3, and scoring just 13 points over the past eight quarters in losses to Tennessee and New England, the last one at home. KC suffered a rare home loss, 19-17, to the Titans last week, but that can be forgiven with a win against their division rivals, an outcome that seems highly probable, having won in overtime at Denver just three weeks ago, 30-27.

Coin Flip: Denver

Rick's Pick: Chiefs 23 Broncos 13

Monday, December 26

Detroit at Dallas (-7, 42 1/2), 8:30 pm (ESPN) - Finally, ESPN gets a good Monday night game, with something on the line for both teams, ensuring a quality experience. Proving again that their rookie stars can handle the bright lights, Dallas took down the Buccaneers Sunday night, 26-20, in the process securing a playoff berth. A Cowboy win would deliver the division title, regardless of what the Giants do Thursday night against the Eagles.

Detroit finally fell flat in the fourth quarter against the Giants, but they remain in the lead in the NFC North. If the Packers prevail over Minnesota Saturday, that will put more pressure on the Lions. who host Green Bay next Sunday. The Lions should be on top of their game, despite the road venue. A cover at least and maybe another last minute victory.

Coin Flip: Dallas

Rick's Pick: Cowboys 23 Lions 21

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