NFL Week 13 picks: Titans-Eagles, Chiefs-Bengals highlight slate

NFL Week 13 picks: Titans-Eagles, Chiefs-Bengals and more originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Thanksgiving is now officially in the rearview mirror and for the NFL, that means the stretch run has just begun.

Just six weeks remain in the regular season and a couple teams face playoff-clinching scenarios as soon as this weekend. This week's slate will go a long way toward determining how that playoff picture shakes out with 30 teams in action.

After going 10-4 and 8-6, respectively, in Week 12, NBC Sports Washington's Ethan Cadeaux (108-69-1) and Matt Weyrich (109-68-1) are back with their picks for Week 13. All game times listed are EST.

Byes: Arizona Cardinals, Carolina Panthers

BILLS (8-3) at PATRIOTS (6-5)

Thursday, 8:15 p.m. on Prime Video

The Bills and Patriots face off in a unique Thursday Night Football matchup that has both teams on regular rest after they played in the Thanksgiving slate last week. New England is hanging around in the hunt for a playoff spot and a win over Buffalo would be massive for potential tiebreaker scenarios in a few weeks.

Ethan: Bills 27, Patriots 20 | Matt: Bills 24, Patriots 14

COMMANDERS (7-5) at GIANTS (7-4)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on FOX

Washington begins a quasi-home-and-home series with the Giants, playing them at MetLife Stadium on Sunday before hosting them in Landover on the other end of their bye in Week 15. New York plays the Eagles in between, so it's not a true series. But the Commanders' recent surge has the Giants in jeopardy of spoiling their strong start with a four-game NFC East swing.

Ethan: Commanders 20, Giants 17 | Matt: Giants 27, Commanders 21

STEELERS (4-7) at FALCONS (5-7)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on CBS

Mike Tomlin is in real danger of suffering his first losing season as an NFL head coach. This season was never expected to be a strong one for Pittsburgh, which drafted Kenny Pickett in hopes of developing its new franchise quarterback. But after Pickett orchestrated several impressive scoring drives in the Steelers' Week 12 win over the Colts, can he help them build a winning streak against a gritty Falcons squad still very much in the hunt for the NFC South title?

Ethan: Steelers 19, Falcons 17 | Matt: Falcons 21, Steelers 17

PACKERS (4-8) at BEARS (3-9)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on FOX

Justin Fields appears on track to play Sunday, which will put to test the long-standing tradition of the Aaron Rodgers-led Packers owning Chicago. The Bears have played inspired football with their young quarterback under center, even if it hasn't translated into many wins. With Rodgers nursing both thumb and oblique injuries, this is a very winnable game for the home team.

Ethan: Packers 20, Bears 10 | Matt: Bears 28, Packers 27

JETS (7-4) at VIKINGS (9-2)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on CBS

There are several early cases for matchup of the week and Jets-Vikings is one of them, especially after the way Mike White played last week. The Vikings rebounded from their ugly loss to the Cowboys with a win over the Patriots in a close primetime game on Thanksgiving. Should White be at the top of his game once again, this could be a fun one.

Ethan: Vikings 28, Jets 20 | Matt: Vikings 23, Jets 21

JAGUARS (4-7) at LIONS (4-7)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on FOX

Neither of these teams are going to be playing in late January, but this game could still be plenty exciting with the directions the Jaguars and Lions are trending. Trevor Lawrence looked the part of a franchise quarterback in last week's comeback win over the Ravens while Detroit had won three straight before narrowly losing to the Bills on a field goal as time expired.

Ethan: Jaguars 34, Lions 31 | Matt: Lions 33, Jaguars 28

BRONCOS (3-8) at RAVENS (7-4)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on CBS

The dumpster fire of a season continued for the Broncos last week as the team reached a lowpoint of the year losing to the rebuilding Panthers. It's gotten so bad that the NFL flexed their Week 14 game against the Chiefs out of primetime. It takes a lot to justify removing Mahomes from a marquee television spot, but that just goes to show how lifeless Denver's offense has been this season.

Ethan: Ravens 21, Broncos 13 | Matt: Ravens 24, Broncos 16

TITANS (7-4) at EAGLES (10-1)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on FOX

Philadelphia has faced just one team with a winning record since its Week 7 bye and lost that game to the Commanders for its lone defeat of the year. Now, the Eagles must take on a Titans squad which has also taken care of business against inferior opponents but couldn't nab wins over the Bengals or Chiefs in recent weeks. One of these two teams is picking up a quality win Sunday.

Ethan: Titans 20, Eagles 17 | Matt: Eagles 28, Titans 24

BROWNS (4-7) at TEXANS (1-9-1)

Sunday, 1:00 p.m. on CBS

Deshaun Watson makes his return to Houston and an NFL field in general Sunday, when he'll start his first game since Week 17 of the 2020 season. There will be plenty of rust for him to shake off, as even with only one win the Texans will be extra motivated to pick up the victory. How Watson will manage the rust — and the boos that are likely to follow him everywhere — will be worth watching.

Ethan: Browns 27, Texans 10 | Matt: Browns 20, Texans 17

SEAHAWKS (6-5) at RAMS (3-8)

Sunday, 4:05 p.m. on FOX

The Rams are expected to play Sunday without Aaron Donald, Matthew Stafford and Cooper Kupp, among several other key starters. It's been a disappointing title defense for Los Angeles, which is one loss away from securing its first losing season since Case Keenum was their starting signal caller. Seattle will be looking for a bounceback win after suffering a surprising loss to the Raiders last week.

Ethan: Seahawks 27, Rams 10 | Matt: Seahawks 31, Rams 14

DOLPHINS (8-3) at 49ERS (7-4)

Sunday, 4:05 p.m. on FOX

Looking for offensive fireworks? How does a game featuring Christian McCaffrey, Tyreek Hill, Deebo Samuel, Jaylen Waddle, George Kittle, Tua Tagovailoa and Brandon Aiyuk sound? Here's a hint: Boom.

Ethan: 49ers 29, Dolphins 27 | Matt: Dolphins 34, 49ers 30

CHIEFS (9-2) at BENGALS (7-4)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. on CBS

A rematch of last season's AFC Championship game has the Chiefs in the rare position of looking for revenge, which is never where an opponent of Patrick Mahomes wants to be. The Bengals have quietly been playing some impressive football over their last games and they should get star wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase back from Injured Reserve. This one could go either way.

Ethan: Chiefs 31, Bengals 28 | Matt: Bengals 33, Chiefs 31

CHARGERS (6-5) at RAIDERS (4-7)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. on CBS

The Chargers narrowly avoided a disappointing loss to the Cardinals with a scoring drive in the final minutes that was highlighted by head coach Brandon Staley's decision to go for two instead force overtime with an extra point. He'll need to stay on his toes for Sunday's game against the Raiders, a team that has proven to be difficult to beat when the offense shows up.

Ethan: Chargers 29, Raiders 26 | Matt: Chargers 26, Raiders 23

COLTS (4-7-1) at COWBOYS (8-3)

Sunday, 8:20 p.m. on NBC

Somehow, the Colts keep finding themselves in primetime games. They're 1-2 since Jeff Saturday took over as head coach following a very winnable game that slipped away from them Monday night against the Colts. Dallas has looked extremely dangerous since Dak Prescott returned from his fractured thumb and Indianapolis's stagnant offense is unlikely to put up much of a fight.

Ethan: Cowboys 23, Colts 16 | Matt: Cowboys 35, Colts 10

SAINTS (4-8) at BUCCANEERS (5-6)

Monday, 8:15 p.m. on ESPN

The Saints have played Tom Brady and the Buccaneers tough over the last few seasons and they enter Sunday's game with a chance at putting themselves in a position to make a run at the NFC South title if they can do it again. Nobody in the division has a record over .500 and while Tampa Bay has to be the favorite while Brady is still around, first place is there for the taking.

Ethan: Buccaneers 21, Saints 14 | Matt: Buccaneers 28, Saints 21