NFL picks, predictions for Week 15: Lions outlast Broncos; Ravens roll Jaguars; Eagles get back on track

Four teams have reached double digits in the win column heading into Week 15. 

None of those teams will get more attention than the Dallas Cowboys down the stretch. The Cowboys were 12-5 the last two seasons, but this year’s team has a chance to top that. 

That has been on the strength of a dominant home season in which they have outscored opponents 279-108 – an average margin of victory of 24.4 points per game. Dak Prescott has worked into the NFL MVP discussion, and this is Mike McCarthy’s best team. 

Now, can they take the show on the road? They will have to in the final month of the season starting this week at Buffalo. Another road trip to Miami follows before the home finale against Detroit. Will The Cowboys be in position to clinch home-field advantage in Week 18 at Washington? It’s on the table. 

This week’s matchup against Buffalo is the highlight of the Sunday schedule, which will follow a Saturday triple-header. 

Each week, Sporting News picks every NFL matchup by the spread. A look at our track record this season heading into Week 15: 

  • Straight up: 130-76 (8-5 in Week 14) 
  • ATS: 103-97-6 (7-6 in Week 14)

Here are our straight-up picks for Week 14 (odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook):

POWER RANKINGS: Cowboys overtake Eagles, Ravens; Steelers, Texans, Colts slip in crowded playoff picture

NFL picks, predictions for Week 15

  • Los Angeles Chargers  at Las Vegas Raiders (-3)

Thursday, 8:15 p.m., Prime Video 

Add Justin Herbert (index finger) to the list of quarterback injuries, and that means Easton Stick could get the start against the Raiders. Stick completed 13 of 24 passes for 179 yards against the Broncos. The teams have split the last four meetings, which have been decided by an average of 5.5 points per game. The over/under (33.5) tells you points will be hard to come by. 

Pick: Chargers 17, Raiders 16 

  • Minnesota Vikings at Cincinnati Bengals (-4) 

Saturday, 1 p.m., NFL Network 

Jake Browning has an 82% completion percentage in his last two starts, and the Bengals have enough talent to make a run to the AFC playoffs. Minnesota (92.9) ranks in the top five in rush defense, but the tandem of Joe Mixon and Chase Brown – a late-season fantasy game – will be enough against a Vikings’ team that is shuffling quarterbacks, too. Will Nick Mullens get the start? 

Pick: Bengals 24, Vikings 17 

  • Pittsburgh Steeelers at Indianapolis Colts (-2.5) 

Saturday, 4:30 p.m., NFL Network 

Yet another backup quarterback battle. This is a battle between a pair of 7-6 teams that are just inside the AFC playoff picture. Both teams are coming off miserable performances in Week 13, too. The Colts have managed just 45.5 rushing yards per game the last two weeks without Jonathan Taylor. The Steelers have averaged 148.3 passing yards per game the last three weeks with Mitchell Trubisky. The Steelers are 3-2 S/U on the road. 

Pick: Steelers 22, Colts 20 

Jared Goff, Lions throwback jerseys 11222023

(Getty Images)

  • Denver Broncos at Detroit Lions (-4) 

Saturday, 8:15 p.m., NFL Network 

Detroit has three or more turnovers in three of its last four games, and Denver is tied for the league lead in takeaways with 24. Sean Payton is a mentor for Dan Campbell, and their coaching styles are similar. Denver has covered in three of its last four games as an underdog, but Detroit plays clean at home in a fun back-and-forth game. 

Pick: Lions 29, Broncos 21 

  • Chicago Bears at Cleveland Browns (-3) 

Sunday, 1 p.m, Fox 

Are the Bears turning a corner? Chicago has won its last two games, and Justin Fields has a 65.7% completion percentage with no interceptions in that stretch. The Browns lead the NFL in total defense (263.0), and Joe Flacco leading a Cleveland playoff run is now on the bingo card. The Browns are 5-1 S/U and 5-1 ATS at home this season. 

Pick: Browns 21, Bears 17 

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Green Bay Packers (-3.5) 

Sunday, 1 p.m, CBS

Baker Mayfield led a season-saving touchdown drive against the Falcons. Now, he will try Lambeau Field for the third time in three seasons. He threw five interceptions in the last two trips there. Green Bay is coming off a short week – and they are 4-2 S/U at home this season, and the Buccaneers rank 30th in pass defense.  Jordan Love makes the throws in crunch time. 

Pick: Packers 23, Buccaneers 20 

Derrick Henry, Browns 09192023

(Getty Images)

  • Houston Texans at Tennessee Titans (-2) 

Sunday, 1 p.m, CBS

C.J. Stroud is in concussion protocol, which means Davis Mills would be under center at Tennessee. These teams play twice in the next three weeks. The Titans are 4-2 S/U at home with two one-score losses. If Stroud is out, then we will go with the home team. 

Pick: Titans 21, Texans 20 

  • New York Jets at Miami Dolphins (-12) 

Sunday, 1 p.m, CBS

Zach Wilson is coming off a 301-yard, two-TD performance, and it’s desperation time for the Jets in the AFC playoff race. Miami is 4-1 ATS at home, and they beat the Jets 34-13 on Nov. 24. Does Wilson make a difference in the rematch? Even on a short week, Miami stays on point with its league-leading offense. 

Pick: Dolphins 34, Jets 21 

  • Kansas City Chiefs (-9.5) at New England Patriots 

Sunday, 1 p.m, Fox

The Chiefs have slipped to the No. 3 spot in the AFC race after dropping three of their last four games. New England’s Bailey Zappe is coming off a three-TD performance against Pittsburgh. Kansas City is 4-2 S/U on the road, however, and Isiah Pacheco (shoulder) could return this week. Look for Patrick Mahomes II to take out his frustrations from last week out on New England. 

Pick: Chiefs 27, Patriots 17 

  • New York Giants at New Orleans Saints (-6) 

Sunday, 1 p.m, Fox

New Orleans broke a three-game losing streak and can get back to .500. The Saints are 3-3 S/U at home this season. Tommy DeVito has improved as the Giants’ short-term starter, but he’s taken 20 sacks in three starts. The Saints will be able to turn the pressure up at home, but the Giants will hang around. 

Pick: Saints 20, Giants 17

  • Atlanta Falcons (-3) at Carolina Panthers 

Sunday, 1 p.m, Fox

The Panthers are stuck in a six-game losing streak where they have not scored more than 18 points per game. Is there a play-up moment against a division rival here? Perhaps, but Atlanta can get the running game going here after being limited to less than 100 yards on the ground the last two weeks. Bijan Robinson and Tyler Allgeier both score TDs in this one. 

Pick: Falcons 27, Panthers 17

  • Washington Commanders at Los Angeles Rams (-6.5) 

Sunday, 4:05 p.m, CBS

Washington had a bye week and should have no wrinkles aimed at breaking a four-game losing streak. The Commanders are 1-3 ATS as an underdog of seven points or more, so keep an eye on whether that line moves up more. Los Angeles has blowout home wins against Arizona and Cleveland. There is potential for that here is the pass rush gets home against Sam Howell. 

Pick: Rams 28, Commanders 19 

Brock Purdy

Getty Images

  • San Francisco 49ers (-13.5) at Arizona Cardinals 

Sunday, 4:05 p.m, CBS

The 49ers have won five straight games by an average of 19.4 points per game, and Brock Purdy has 13 TDs and two interceptions in the stretch. Is he the favorite for NFL MVP? The Niners have won the last three meetings in this series by an average of 24 points per game. Get this before it jumps to more than 14 points. 

Pick: 49ers 33, Cardinals 15

  • Dallas Cowboys at Buffalo Bills (-1.5)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m, Fox

Dallas is going to be hyped all week, but they are 3-3 S/U on the road. Prescott has a 88.7 QB rating in road games, too. Buffalo needs this one to stay in the playoff race, where they are on the outside looking in. Will Josh Allen handle Dallas’ pass rush? Allen has 17 TDs and six interceptions at home this season. While Buffalo is favored, this feels like a chance for Dallas to flex. 

Pick: Cowboys 28, Bills 26

  • Baltimore Ravens (-3) at Jacksonville Jaguars 

Sunday, 8:20 p.m., NBC

The Jaguars’ tour of Ohio did not go well in losses to the Bengals and Browns, and now they have to face the team in the AFC North now. Lamar Jackson is 5-1 S/U with just two interceptions on the road this season, and the Ravens are finding multiple ways to win. Baltimore extends its winning streak to four games, and the Jaguars’ hold on the AFC South is tenuous. 

Pick: Ravens 30, Jaguars 24 

  • Philadelphia Eagles (-5.5) at Seattle Seahawks 

Monday, 8:15 p.m., ABC

Seattle is stuck in a four-game losing streak, but they are 4-2 S/U at home and in a desperation spot against the Eagles – who are coming off back-to-back losses through a brutal four-game stretch in the schedule. This isn’t necessarily a get-well game, but the Eagles get back on track 

Pick: Eagles 28, Seahawks 24

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