Six teams on upset alert in NFL Week 11

By Jesse Reed
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Seven more weekends of regular-season action. That’s what’s left for teams heading into NFL Week 11, and there’s obviously a lot at stake down the stretch.

Last weekend, we correctly identified three huge upsets, and now we’re hunting for six more teams on upset alert heading into Sunday’s action. We’ll go ahead and start with the most highly anticipated matchup of NFL Week 11.

Houston Texans vs. Baltimore Ravens (-4)

Deshaun Watson and the Texans against Lamar Jackson and the Ravens. This is going to be must-see television as these two young MVP candidates go head to head.

It’s easy to understand why the Ravens are favored. They’re at home, and recently, the Jackson-led offense has been a juggernaut — Baltimore is averaging almost 39 points the past three games. Houston doesn’t exactly scare anyone defensively these days, Jacksonville game notwithstanding, so the Ravens could continue to feast.

The reason we’re putting the red-hot Baltimore squad on upset alert is that Watson and the Texans can score with anyone. If the third-year quarterback gets hot, watch out. This game should be full of fireworks and we can’t wait to see what happens.

Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts (-3)

The Colts are getting quarterback Jacoby Brissett back this Sunday, which is huge considering Brian Hoyer almost single-handedly blew last weekend’s game. Then again, not a lot went right for Indy against the lowly Miami Dolphins, and that’s a cause for concern going forward.

Meanwhile, the Jaguars are getting starting quarterback Nick Foles back for the first time since Week 1. Before his broken collarbone, the veteran was slinging it well against Kansas City. If he can do what Gardner Minshew did in his absence, then the Jacksonville offense should be tough to stop.

New York Jets vs. Washington Redskins (-2)

This is the game nobody really wants to watch in Week 11. These two organizations are the worst-run in the league, and the quality of play is terrible, too.

The big question you have to ask yourself (if you’re considering laying down a bet) is who you trust more not to throw the game away. Sam Darnold finally woke up from his mono-induced slumber last weekend to have a good day passing against the New York Giants. Meanwhile, rookie Dwayne Haskins has yet to throw a touchdown in three games so far this season.

Despite this being a road game for Darnold and Co., we’re not confident Haskins will finally break out and lead Washington to victory.

Arizona Cardinals vs. San Francisco 49ers (-10)

A few things to note here. George Kittle is doubtful to play Sunday, Emmanuel Sanders is questionable with the rib injury that knocked him out Monday night, and the 49ers were lucky to beat the Cardinals almost at full strength a few weeks back.

The 49ers have issues offensively without their stars on the field. Drops were a plague upon this unit during the Monday night overtime thriller. As his receivers failed to bring in his good passes, Jimmy Garoppolo started to wilt under pressure in overtime.

Kyler Murray has been outstanding as a rookie, and he is starting to really come into his own in the second half of the season. If San Francisco’s defense isn’t razor-sharp, then don’t be surprised if the 49ers drop their second straight game.

Chicago Bears vs. Los Angeles Rams (-6)

Sunday night’s showdown between Chicago and Los Angeles isn’t quite the game the schedule makers thought it would be. Both teams are limping into the second half of the season and appear to be playoff pretenders.

Funny enough, the reason we believe the Bears can pull off the upset against the Rams is that Mitchell Trubisky comes into NFL Week 11 as the hotter quarterback. Jared Goff has been abysmal and was unbelievably bad against the Pittsburgh Steelers in his last outing. If Trubisky can just avoid turning the ball over, the Bears’ vaunted defense could potentially win this game all by itself.

Kansas City Chiefs (-4) vs. Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers have been excellent defensively since Melvin Ingram came back to team up with Joey Bosa. Trying to slow down Patrick Mahomes is almost a fool’s errand, but at the least these two pass rushers should make him uncomfortable on Monday night. Still, we expect the Chiefs to score plenty.

However, we’re putting Kansas City on upset alert in Week 11 because of one main thing: The Chiefs aren’t stopping folks on the defensive side of the ball. Ryan Tannehill, for crying out loud, just beat them in a game that saw Derrick Henry romp for 188 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.

Look for Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler to have huge games for the Chargers. If Philip Rivers can hearken back to the days when he wasn’t making multiple poor throws per game, Los Angeles has a tremendous chance to win at home.