NFL Week 16 picks: Rams defeat Seahawks; Packers edge Titans

Rams quarterback Jared Goff pumps his fist after throwing a touchdown pass to the Jets last week. (Kyusung Gong / Associated Press)
The Times NFL writer Sam Farmer is investigating this week's matchups. Lines to Pregame.com (O / U = over / under). Last week's record 11-5 (.688); Season 151-72-1 (.677).
Using point spreads with the farmer's predicted scores, the record against the spread would have been 8-8 (.500); Season 115-104-5 (.525). The times are Pacific.

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Buccaneers (9-5) with Lions (5-9)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady will face the Atlanta Falcons on December 20. (Danny Karnik / Associated Press)
Saturday at 10 a.m.
TV: NFL network.
Line: privateers to 10. O / U: 54.
Good teams can step on the gas if necessary, and the buccaneers have demonstrated that ability at critical times this season. Her win from behind last week was a confidence builder.
Prediction: Buccaneers 31, Lions 16

49ers (5-9) at Cardinals (8-6)
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray warms up before a game against the Philadelphia Eagles on December 20. (Jennifer Stewart / Associated Press)
Saturday, 1:30 p.m.
TV: Amazon Prime.
Line: Cardinals from 5. O / U: 481/2.
The Cardinals punched the 49ers in the mouth in the opener, and that was before San Francisco was ravaged with injuries. Now, spurred on by the playoff implications, Arizona is making a sweep.
Prediction: Cardinals 27, 49ers 23

Dolphins (9-5) at Raiders (7-7)
Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Marcus Mariota runs the ball against the chargers on December 17th. (David Becker / Associated Press)
Saturday, 5:15 p.m.
TV: NFL network.
Line: Dolphins from 3. O / U: 471/2.
Defense is a game changer for the dolphins, and in this case it plays an important role. Marcus Mariota makes things interesting for the Raiders, but Tua Tagovailoa is also gaining some confidence for Miami.
Prediction: Dolphins 28, Raiders 21

Bears (7-7) with jaguars (1-13)
Chicago Bears running back David Montgomery carries the ball against the Minnesota Vikings. (Bruce Kluckhorn / Associated Press)
Sunday at 10 a.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 705.
Line: bears from 71/2. O / U: 47.
Great game for bears. They finally give David Montgomery a ton of the ball and let Mitch Trubisky be more of a game manager. The jaguars can stay there with teams, but not for long.
Forecast: bears 28, jaguars 17

Stallions (10-4) at Steelers (11-3)
Indianapolis Colts quarterback Philip Rivers warms up before taking on Houston Texas on December 20. (AJ Mast / Associated Press)
Sunday at 10 a.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 706
Line: Colts from 11/2. O / U: 441/2.
Steeler's receivers may outperform man coverage, but the Colts don't play man much. You play a lot of two deep coverage and stop the run. That and Philip Rivers is the formula for success.
Prediction: Colts 24, Steelers 18

Panthers (4-10) in Washington (6-8)
Carolina Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater warms up before taking on the Green Bay Packers on December 19. (Matt Ludtke / Associated Press)
Sunday, 1:05 p.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 707.
Row: Select it. O / U: 421/2.
Could be a close game, ugly and bad, especially with Washington's quarterback problems. But can Carolina's offense do enough against a defense in Washington that can be cruel?
Forecast: Washington 17, Panthers 14

Browns (10-4) at Jets (1-13)
Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield throws a touchdown pass against the New York Giants on December 20. (Adam Hunger / Associated Press)
Sunday at 10 a.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 708.
Line: Browns of 91/2. O / U: 471/2.
Throw out last week and the jets piss off the rams. The Browns have this boast and an offense to back them up. With his ability to run, Cleveland could do some damage in the postseason.
Prediction: Browns 35, Jets 24

Giants (5-9) with ravens (9-5)
Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson warms up before a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars on December 20. (Nick Wass / Associated Press)
Sunday at 10 a.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 709.
Line: Ravens from 101/2. O / U: 44.
The giants are done. Baltimore is playing desperately and Lamar Jackson looks like him again. The ravens can run and will run against a giant defense that sometimes plays well.
Prediction: Ravens 28, Giants 17

Bengals (3-10-1) at Texans (4-10)
Sunday at 10 a.m.
TV: None. DirecTV: 710.
Line: Texans from 71/2. O / U: 46.
Cincinnati's defense played great against Pittsburgh on Monday, but the Texans offensive has too much firepower. QB Deshaun Watson has been better since the coaching change and took what was given.
The story goes on

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