In honor of Pro Picks' skill at picking Best Bets — 2-12 against the spread, no winners since Week 6 — we offer a Worst Bet to go along with it this week.
First, though, a look at the juiciest game on the schedule, the Bradys vs. the Tebows, uh, the Patriots against the Broncos in Denver.
For those still in wonderment over the Broncos' six-game winning streak built on a solid defense and the magic of quarterback Tim Tebow late in games, Patriots coach Bill Belichick offers this:
"We brought Tim in and spent a whole day with him here, in addition to our other interactions with him. He's an impressive young man. He had great success in college. I think all his attributes are pretty well documented. He's a strong guy, smart, works hard, a great leader, great football character."
Sounds like Belichick is a believer, too. But his Patriots can clinch the AFC East with a win. New England's defense has been torn up by two weak offenses, Indianapolis and Washington, the last two weeks, yet the Patriots still have won five in a row. Win this and Belichick can tool with the D as the playoffs approach.
Las Vegas doesn't adhere to Tebowmania, apparently, making New England a 6-point favorite. We sort of believe — by a point.
As for the Best Bet — and Worst Bet:
Cleveland (plus 7) at Arizona
Browns come off long layoff, which won't help against streaking Cardinals.
BEST BET: CARDINALS, 27-14
New York Jets (plus 2 1-2) at Philadelphia
Jets are 0-8 against Eagles. Make it 0-9.
But it's so dangerous to trust Philly.
WORST BET: EAGLES, 21-17
Detroit (minus 1) at Oakland
Raiders must send Lions into Black Hole or forget about postseason.
UPSET SPECIAL: RAIDERS, 24-23
Jacksonville (plus 11) at Atlanta, Thursday night
Falcons can put vice grip on wild-card berth.
Dallas (minus 7) at Tampa Bay, Saturday night
So close to being comfortable, Dallas now is desperate.
Washington (plus 7) at New York Giants
If Giants win out, they are in playoffs. Nice place to start.
Green Bay (minus 13 1-2) at Kansas City
At least Todd Haley won't have to watch this from the sideline.
New Orleans (minus 7) at Minnesota
Saints won't need missed call by officials on last play to win.
Baltimore (minus 2 1-2) at San Diego
Ravens are league's most-balanced team, but struggle on road.
Seattle (plus 4) at Chicago
Both teams trying to stay in wild-card chase. Bears barely will.
Carolina (plus 6 1-2) at Houston
With first playoff berth secured, Texans seek AFC's top seed.
Tennessee (minus 6 1-2) at Indianapolis
Two years ago, Colts were unbeaten at this point. They remain winless ...
Cincinnati (minus 6 1-2) at St. Louis
If things break right, Bengals can take control of final wild-card again.
Pittsburgh (OFF) at San Francisco, Monday night
Wonder what the spread would have been if Ben Roethlisberger was healthy.
Miami (OFF) at Buffalo
Lovely way to spend a December afternoon for Floridians.
Against spread: 6-7 (overall 101-89-4); straight up 12-4 (overall 135-73).
Best Bet: 2-12 against spread, 9-5 straight up.
Upset Special: 9-5 against spread, 7-7 straight up.