The NFL rosters have been completely overhauled, give or take a few last-minute details that are being sorted as we speak, so we have a pretty darn good idea of what to expect in the coming season and its NFL odd. With that in mind, here are some NFL Week 11 free picks, as prepared by our expert handicapper.
In Depth Analysis On The 2016 NFL Week 11 Expert Picks
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers
NFL Week 11 Free Pick: New Orleans (+10)
With a horrible defense, and a banged-up group of receivers to throw the ball to, and virtually no running game to support him; veteran QB and Future Hall of Famer Drew Brees still had a decent 2015 season, leading the entire NFL in passing yards (4870) and helping the Saints to a 7-9 record. With an improved defense and a better set of offensive weapons from a busy offseason, things are certainly looking up for the New Orleans Saints and 2016 could be a huge bounce-back season for Brees and Co. That being said, along with the fact that Saints never lost to the Panthers by double digits last season (27-22 defeat in Carolina, 41-38 defeat in New Orleans) despite being ravished by weak personnel; I wouldn’t expect New Orleans to lose by 10-plus points in 2016, given that they will be a much better and more competitive unit than they were in 2015.
Chicago Bears at New York Giants (-4)
NFL Week 11 Free Pick: New York Giants (-4)
The Giants and the Bears are among the biggest winners in the offseason, with both teams particularly making solid investments to improve the defensive holes that have hindered their success. Even so, it is the Giants who look better-prepared for a bigger season, considering the fact that they have a dependable QB in Eli Manning. For all his talent, Chicago’s starting QB Jay Cutler has been wobbly over the recent years—a big reason he struggled to impress under veteran coach John Fox in 2015. Therefore, even with the tons of talent Cutler will have at his disposal in 2016, we are locking on Manning and the Giants to come out on top when these two teams clash in East Rutherford.
Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5)
NFL Week 11 Free Pick: Cincinnati (-5.5)
Including last season’s 13-point victory, the Bengals are 3-0 in their last three back-to-back meetings against the Bills and will be gunning for a fourth straight win when the two teams meet this season. On paper, both the teams are coming more-or-less similar offseasons with average investments, so the status quo should remain in this series, with the Bengals having the last laugh in a rather easy home win.
Arizona Cardinals at Minnesota Vikings (-1.5)
NFL Week 11 Free Pick: Arizona (+1.5)
In 2015, the Cardinals finally put their poor record vs. Minnesota behind them by claiming a 3-point win over the Vikings in December, a victory that brought an end to Minnesota’s previous three-game winning streak against Arizona. The newly-rebranded “All or Nothing” Cardinals will be hoping to carry the momentum of that victory into this pivotal Week 11 clash that will most likely come with dire playoff repercussions. Can the Cardinals make it 2-0 against Minnesota? It won’t be easy, no doubt, but if Carson Palmer and his top-10 rushing offense from 2015 can stay healthy, then it doesn’t matter how Minnesota will play because the victory will eventually go to Arizona. The Teddy Bridgewater-led offense will still cause problems and Minnesota’s defense will continue to manage the game, but the conservative nature of the Vikings game will be the team’s undoing here, considering the Cards have a deeply talented offense that is perfectly suited to win this type of games.