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Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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Casino City's Week 11 NFL Circa Million IV Pro Football Contest Picks

18 Nov 2022

By Dan Ippolito
It’s a historic weekend in the NFL already, and no the Casino City staff is not talking about Tennessee’s 27-17 Thursday Night Football win at Green Bay. We’re talking about how for the first time in eight years the National Football League is moving Sunday’s Cleveland at Buffalo game to Detroit due to an impending blizzard that is supposed to dump up to six feet of snow in Orchard Park. As a result, we took the Browns at +8 off our list of games, but we still have five more we like as we still search for our first perfect picks week.

Let’s take a look at our picks for Week 11:

1. Chicago +3 over Atlanta
On paper both the Bears and Falcons seem even, although that doesn’t say much as neither team is wowing anyone with their 3-7 and 4-6 records respectively.

So, what’s going to be the “it” factor that pushes one of these teams over the other. Enter Chicago signal caller Justin Fields. Even with his tired legs that caused the quarterback to scale it back in practice this week after running for 145 yards for consecutive weeks, he’s going to cause Atlanta problems as it will have to respect the prospect of him tucking the ball away and running down field. Add in Fields’ 1,489 yards and 12 touchdowns by air, emerging talent Cole Kmet at tight end and running back David Montgomery, and well you’ve got an offense that’s averaged over 28 points per game over the last three weeks.

This week the Bears will right the ship and get back into the win column as they make Atlanta’s Mercedes Benz Stadium their den.

2. Cincinnati -4 over Pittsburgh
It has become pretty evident that the Pittsburgh Steelers’ offense is far from intimidating. The team hasn’t scored more than 13 points in the last three weeks and only averages 15 points per game on the season. In order to keep this game close, Pittsburgh will be relying on its defense to contain Joe Burrow and company.

Ja’Marr Chase is still out with a hip injury, so that is still a big loss for the Bengals. It is impressive though how many weapons the Bengals still have without Chase. Both Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins are more than capable pass catchers who know how to create separation and get open for their young QB.

Joe Mixon out of the backfield is one of the more dangerous backs in the league. If you have him on your fantasy team, you must have been loving every moment of last week’s Cincinnati game when Mixon tallied five total touchdowns.

3. Dallas -1.5 over Minnesota
Not only do we see a huge match-up edge on the field for the Boys in this game, we also have to factor in that the Vikings are coming off a HUGE upset overtime win at Buffalo last week in what many are calling the "Game of the Year," so a letdown -- both physically and mentally -- is only natural. Heck, the Vikings didn't even hold a typical practice on Wednesday, due to the number of snaps they played against the Bills.

The win was a mind-boggling seventh-straight victory for the Vikings by one score or less. We hate to use the term "lucky" when discussing the NFL, but let's just say Minnesota has been very "fortunate" in compiling its flashy 8-1 record this season and that's the main reason why the Purple and Gold have been installed as a home dog in this game.

As for that aforementioned match-up edge for the Cowboys. Dallas has, by far, the best pass rush in the league and will be lining up on the fast track in Minnesota against a Vikings' offensive line that may be without LT Christian Darrisaw, who has graded out as the best offensive linemen in football this season. QB Kirk Cousins' kryptonite has always been when he is pressured in the pocket. In Minnesota's only loss this season to Philadelphia, Cousins was pressured on 33.3% of his dropbacks, and those plays resulted in him completing just six of 14 passes for 51 yards, one TD and two INTs.

Despite coughing up a 14-point lead entering the fourth quarter last week in Green Bay, Dallas is still 10-3 at the betting window in its last 13 road games. Lay the short number.

4. New York Giants -3 over Detroit
The home and away records in this matchup speak for themselves. The Giants sit at 4-1 while the visiting Lions are a disappointing 1-3 on the road and eyeing 1-4 come Sunday.

This game is going to be lost on the defensive side of the ball for Detroit. The Lions give up 427 total yards per game, including 160 on the ground. Why is the ground game so important? Well, the Giants have the NFL’s second-place rusher in Saquon Barkley with 931 yards.

Barkley needs 80 yards rushing Sunday in order to regain the league lead after Tennessee’s Derrick Henry took it from him when he played in last night’s Thursday Night Football win over Green Bay.
If the Detroit offense isn’t having success, this game could get very ugly and early.

5. Philadelphia -6.5 over Indianapolis
On Monday night, the Philadelphia Eagles accepted its first loss of the season at the hands of the Washington Commanders. The Eagles turned the ball over four times in the primetime matchup, which was more than the team had given the ball away all season.

This definitely has “bounce-back game” written all over it. The Colts brought in former player Jeff Saturday as the interim coach after firing Frank Reich. Saturday went back to Matt Ryan as the starter and the Colts won in Saturday’s coaching debut against Las Vegas Raiders, 25-20.

It is always impressive when a coach wins his first game, but a victory against the Raiders might not mean too much this year as it seems everyone is beating them.

The Eagles also made some additions to the defensive front this week by signing free agents Linval Joseph and Ndamukong Suh.

After an underwhelming performance last week, the Eagles should come to play, take care of the ball, and remind the NFL why they were 8-0 before the loss to the Commanders.

Week 10 Results: 2-3
Season Record: 26-22-2
 
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