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The Week 14 NFL schedule for the 2021 season is stacked with great matchups, and we’ve got you covered with what you need to know heading into the weekend. Our NFL Nation reporters bring us the biggest keys to every game, a bold prediction for each matchup and, of course, final score picks.
Additionally, ESPN Stats & Information provides a big stat to know and a betting nugget for each contest, and our Football Power Index (FPI) goes inside the numbers with a matchup rating (on a scale of 1 to 100) and a game projection. ESPN researcher Kyle Soppe hands out helpful fantasy football intel, as well. Everything you want to know is here in one spot to help you get ready for a loaded weekend of NFL football.
Let’s get into the full Week 14 slate, including Tom Brady and Josh Allen in a high-octane offensive showdown, the Chiefs and Raiders in an AFC West battle and an important 49ers-Bengals game for each conference’s wild-card race. It all culminates with a massive NFC West Monday Night Football matchup between the Rams and the Cardinals on ESPN. (Game times are Sunday unless otherwise noted.)
1 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 58.6 | Spread: CLE -2.5 (43)
What to watch for: Will the Browns’ offense — specifically the passing game — make a turnaround coming out of the bye week? Coach Kevin Stefanski and his staff devoted last week to self-scouting, searching for a way to jump-start an offense that has scored more than 17 points only once since Oct. 10. To have any hope of defeating the Ravens this time, Cleveland will have to score a lot more than the 10 points it put up in their Nov. 28 meeting in Baltimore. — Jake Trotter
Bold prediction: The Browns will run for more than 150 yards against the NFL’s top-ranked run defense. Two weeks ago, Baltimore held Cleveland to its season low in rushing yards (40). But the Browns know their winning formula is committing to the run (5-1 when rushing over 30 times), and Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt are the healthiest part of Cleveland’s offense. — Jamison Hensley
Stat to know: Cleveland edge rusher Myles Garrett is second in the NFL with 14.0 sacks this season (T.J. Watt, 16). That means he is tied with Reggie Camp (14.0 in 1984) for the most sacks in a season in franchise history (since 1982).
What to know for fantasy: Worried about the dud performance from Baltimore QB Lamar Jackson against these Browns in Week 12? It was concerning, but in his past two trips to the home of the Dawg Pound, he has racked up over 100 yards rushing on his way to 32.4 fantasy points per game. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Cleveland is 1-6 against the spread (ATS) in its past seven games — and 0-3 ATS in its past three games. Read more.
Hensley’s pick: Browns 30, Ravens 24
Trotter’s pick: Browns 22, Ravens 20
FPI prediction: CLE, 53.5% (by an average of 1.2 points)
1 p.m. ET | Fox
Matchup rating: 58.4 | Spread: DAL -4 (48)
What to watch for: Can Washington’s run game create against the Dallas front? Washington has converted 50% of its third downs during the win streak because it constantly faces third-and-4 or less. That has been the case on 27 out of its past 58 third downs. You can credit the run game for that success. And that’s important because if Washington gets into third-and-long vs. this pass rush, it’ll be a big day for Dallas’ Micah Parsons. It’s probably the difference between a close Washington win and a Dallas double-digit victory. — John Keim
Bold prediction: Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott will have a rushing touchdown. He has just one on the year after having at least three — and a max of six — in each of his first five seasons. The Cowboys have not had him run as much as he has in the past, likely because of the ankle injury he suffered last season, but he has four rushing touchdowns in his career against Washington. By the way, he is 7-1 as a starter vs. Washington with 13 touchdown passes and just one interception. — Todd Archer
Stat to know: Washington running back Antonio Gibson has had 109 touches during the team’s four-game win streak, the second most since Week 10 behind Jonathan Taylor (114). And he had four touchdowns and averaged 132.0 scrimmage yards in two games against the Cowboys last season.
Stephen A. Smith and Michael Irvin feel differently about whether the Cowboys should be worried about the Washington Football Team.
What to know for fantasy: Does Dallas win this game? The answer to that question and the question of whether to start Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott in fantasy is the same. For his career, he averages 23.3 fantasy points per game in wins over Washington but just 5.1 in the losses. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Dallas is 7-0 ATS in conference games this season. Read more.
Archer’s pick: Cowboys 30, Washington 22
Keim’s pick: Washington 24, Cowboys 23
FPI prediction: DAL, 62.9% (by an average of 4.4 points)
Matchup must-reads: Cowboys should be nearing full strength just in time for the playoff push … Washington, like QB Heinicke, keeps proving doubters wrong … McCarthy says Cowboys ‘going to win’ Sunday against Washington
1 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 56.2 | Spread: KC -9.5 (48)
What to watch for: The Chiefs have looked like the Chiefs just once in the past six weeks, and that came in Week 10 against the Raiders. Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes passed for 406 yards and five touchdowns in a 41-14 win. Was it a fluke or do the Chiefs have the Raiders figured out? The Chiefs have a good chance of posting big offensive numbers again if they protect Mahomes as well as they did last time these two teams met. They held edge rushers Yannick Ngakoue and Maxx Crosby without a sack. — Adam Teicher
Bold prediction: Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce will have a fourth straight game against the Raiders with at least 100 receiving yards. He said he got his “swag” back after catching eight passes for a season-high 119 yards in the November meeting, and Raiders safety Johnathan Abram has given up 14 catches on 15 targets for 198 yards and three TDs in three career games against the Chiefs. Kelce has had eight total catches his past two games but will feast on Sunday. — Paul Gutierrez
Stat to know: Raiders receiver Hunter Renfrow has put together back-to-back 100-yard receiving games for the second time in his career, but he has never had three straight such games. In fact, the only Raiders player in the past 20 seasons with three straight 100-yard receiving games is tight end Darren Waller (four straight from 2020 to 2021).
What to know for fantasy: Las Vegas quarterback Derek Carr has completed over 70% of his passes while throwing multiple touchdowns and scoring over 18 fantasy points in each of his past three games against the Chiefs. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Kansas City has covered three straight games after starting the season 2-7 ATS. Read more.
Gutierrez’s pick: Chiefs 31, Raiders 20
Teicher’s pick: Chiefs 26, Raiders 20
FPI prediction: KC, 71.9% (by an average of 7.7 points)
Matchup must-reads: Raiders’ slow-starting, Jekyll-and-Hyde offense has season on the brink … Victory laps and one-liners: Chiefs-Raiders still runs red hot … Raiders agree to extensions with Carlson, Cole … Mathieu surprises critical response nurse with Super Bowl tickets … Chiefs safety Sorensen symbolizes team’s defensive turnaround
1 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 39.9 | Spread: TEN -8.5 (43.5)
What to watch for: The Titans are longing to get back into the positive column of the turnover ratio. Tennessee turned the ball over nine times in its past two games and failed to get any takeaways. Jacksonville’s minus-1.3 turnover margin is tied for the worst in the league, so this week should be a good opportunity for the Titans to get some takeaways. — Turron Davenport
Bold prediction: Jaguars running back James Robinson will get 25-plus touches. There has been an outcry in Jacksonville after Robinson was benched for 16 and 20 plays the past two weeks after fumbling (backup RB Carlos Hyde fumbled but went back onto the field for the next drive). QB Trevor Lawrence even spoke to the coaching staff about Robinson being on the field. Expect an overcorrection this week, but don’t expect the same kind of performance he had in the first meeting (149 yards). The Titans are giving up only 98 yards per game on the ground, so we aren’t looking for Robinson to rush for more than 100. — Mike DiRocco
Field Yates breaks down the pros and cons of having Carlos Hyde on your fantasy roster this week.
Stat to know: Tennessee quarterback Ryan Tannehill has thrown 13 interceptions this season, tied for the second most in the NFL and as many as he had in his previous two seasons with Titans combined. But the Jaguars’ defense has just five picks this season, tied for the league’s second fewest.
What to know for fantasy: The Titans’ Dontrell Hilliard was a top-15 running back in both Week 11 and Week 12, scoring the eighth-most points at the position over those two weeks as a whole. (Tennessee had a Week 13 bye.) See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: The under is 10-2 in Jacksonville games this season, with seven straight unders. Read more.
DiRocco’s pick: Titans 20, Jaguars 10
Davenport’s pick: Titans 35, Jaguars 10
FPI prediction: TEN, 81.1% (by an average of 11.7 points)
Matchup must-reads: The curious season of Jaguars RB Robinson and his unpredictable usage … Inside the Nashville wellness center that helps Titans players stay healthy … Titans coach Vrabel’s success lies within his weekly messages
1 p.m. ET | Fox
Matchup rating: 31.6 | Spread: CAR -2.5 (42)
What to watch for: Carolina’s new offensive playcaller, Jeff Nixon, is run-oriented. So look for him to come at the Falcons the way former offensive coordinator Joe Brady did the first time these teams met. He might not call 47 rushes as Brady did in that 19-13 win, but you can bet he’ll call more than the 18-21 runs that Brady did in his last two games. Look for a lot more read-option now that Cam Newton is the quarterback. — David Newton
Bold prediction: Carolina ran for 203 yards the last time these two teams played, and don’t be surprised if the strategy looks similar again on Sunday for the Panthers. And with similar results: mostly field goals and not many touchdowns. The difference this time for the Falcons is they have a more consistent game plan, and quarterback Matt Ryan will find a way to throw two touchdown passes, enough to help push Atlanta to a win. — Michael Rothstein
Stat to know: With Christian McCaffrey inactive, Chuba Hubbard will likely start at running back for the Panthers. He was second in the NFL in rush attempts (89) and ninth in rush yards (379) in Weeks 4-8 while McCaffrey was out.
Betting nugget: Atlanta is 4-1 ATS in its past five road games. Read more.
Rothstein’s pick: Falcons 20, Panthers 17
Newton’s pick: Panthers 24, Falcons 20
FPI prediction: CAR, 67.5% (by an average of 6.1 points)
1 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 20.4 | Spread: NO -5.5 (42.5)
What to watch for: Saints quarterback Taysom Hill has an injured middle finger on his throwing hand and might have to play with a splint, but four fingers should be enough to beat the worst defense in the NFL. The Jets are allowing 30.6 points per game, the NFL’s seventh-worst mark since 2000, according to ESPN Stats & Information research. The best-case scenario for the Jets is that rookie quarterback Zach Wilson — like Hill, a BYU product — can build off last week’s encouraging performance. — Rich Cimini
Bold prediction: New Orleans running back Alvin Kamara will have more than double the amount of yards from scrimmage as the entire Jets backfield. Kamara will be an even bigger part of New Orleans’ offense than usual with Mark Ingram II likely sidelined on the reserve/COVID-19 list and Hill dealing with a finger injury. Meanwhile, the Jets won’t be able to generate much on the ground against New Orleans’ dominant run defense, and their RBs haven’t been a big part of the passing game with Wilson at quarterback. — Mike Triplett
Stat to know: Jets receiver Elijah Moore has five receiving touchdowns this season (all in his past five games). That’s tied for the most in the NFL since Week 9, and his 392 receiving yards rank seventh.
Field Yates and Matthew Berry discuss the fantasy value of Taysom Hill with his ability to run the ball.
Betting nugget: New York is a league-worst 3-9 ATS this season. Read more.
Triplett’s pick: Saints 22, Jets 19
Cimini’s pick: Saints 31, Jets 17
FPI prediction: NO, 70.8% (by an average of 7.3 points)
Matchup must-reads: Saints WR Harris suspended three games; DE Jordan put on COVID-19 list … Mosley tired of opponents laughing at Jets … ‘God wasn’t done with me’: How Saints’ Davis began to play his best ball in his 30s
1 p.m. ET | Fox
Matchup rating: 17.6 | Spread: SEA -8.5 (41)
What to watch for: The Texans are scoring a league-worst 13.5 points per game this season and have been shut out twice. Meanwhile, the Seahawks’ defense ranks sixth in the NFL, allowing an average of 20.8 points per game. Houston’s team total is set at 16.5, but the Texans have hit that number only twice since Week 2. — Sarah Barshop
Bold prediction: The Seahawks will get at least three sacks of whomever Houston starts at quarterback (Tyrod Taylor or Davis Mills). And yeah, that’s bold considering their pass rush has been among the worst in the league and easily their biggest disappointment. They’re facing the right team on Sunday, with Houston ranking 30th in ESPN’s pass block win rate while allowing the sixth-most sacks per dropback of any team. — Brady Henderson
Stat to know: Both teams rank in the bottom three in time of possession this season. And the Seahawks are on pace to become the second team in the past 45 seasons to average fewer than 25 minutes of possession per game (1999 Browns).
What to know for fantasy: Seattle receiver Tyler Lockett has finished each of the past three weeks inside the top 30 fantasy finishers at the position, while DK Metcalf has zero such performances over that stretch. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Houston’s past four games have gone under the total. Read more.
Henderson’s pick: Seahawks 26, Texans 14
Barshop’s pick: Seahawks 20, Texans 7
FPI prediction: SEA, 72.9% (by an average of 8.1 points)
Matchup must-reads: Seahawks’ Dunlap tries to make most of diminished role … Why the Texans might look to future and go with rookie QB Mills to finish season … Seahawks’ Adams needs season-ending shoulder surgery … Texans cut LB Cunningham after Week 13 benching
4:05 p.m. ET | Fox
Matchup rating: 45.5 | Spread: LAC -10 (43)
What to watch for: Who will be at QB for the Giants? It’s likely going to be Jake Fromm or Mike Glennon, but the Chargers don’t care. They are worried about Saquon Barkley, whom coach Brandon Staley called “a real running back.” The Chargers are dealing with COVID-19 issues, with receivers Mike Williams and Keenan Allen on the COVID/reserve list, along with cornerback Chris Harris Jr. That could be a big factor in the outcome of the game. — Shelley Smith
Bold prediction: Los Angeles running back Austin Ekeler will have 200 total yards. We all know Ekeler is a dual threat. He can do damage as a rusher (663 yards) and receiver (518 yards). That could be problematic for the Giants, who have allowed the eighth-most receiving yards to running backs. And with Los Angeles facing questions about the availability of its top receivers, the offense will likely funnel through Ekeler more than usual. Expect a monster game. — Jordan Raanan
Stat to know: Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert has 58 career passing touchdowns, and he needs two on Sunday to join Dan Marino (68) as the only QBs in NFL history with 60 over their first two seasons.
Field Yates and Matthew Berry reflect on Saquon Barkley’s disappointing fantasy season.
What to know for fantasy: If you remove Barkley’s longest carry from his three games since returning from injury, he has just 53 yards on 27 carries. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Giants coach Joe Judge is 9-4 ATS as a road underdog but only 1-3 ATS in his past four games in that spot. Read more.
Raanan’s pick: Chargers 28, Giants 16
Smith’s pick: Chargers 34, Giants 17
FPI prediction: LAC, 76.4% (by an average of 9.6 points)
4:05 p.m. ET | Fox
Matchup rating: 34.8 | Spread: DEN -10 (42)
What to watch for: The Broncos are trying to stay on the fringes of the AFC’s playoff race, and it might rest squarely on their ability to simply admit what they do best on offense — running the ball paired with an opportunistic play-action passing game that can push the ball down the field — and stick to it. Detroit’s defense is playing well enough to cause a significant problem for the Broncos’ often-clunky offense, but the teams that have committed to running the ball against the Lions have had success doing it. Six opponents have rushed for at least 130 yards in wins over Detroit. If the Broncos want to avoid an enormous hit to their postseason hopes, they will need to be another one of those teams. — Jeff Legwold
Bold prediction: Remember the name: Amon-Ra St. Brown. Riding off the success of last week’s game-winning touchdown, the rookie Lions receiver will have his second career receiving touchdown in Denver, as quarterback Jared Goff will look to target him more this week. — Eric Woodyard
Stat to know: Teddy Bridgewater is on pace to become the first Broncos quarterback since Peyton Manning (2014) to throw 20 passing touchdowns in a single season.
What to know for fantasy: Broncos running back Javonte Williams, in his first experience as “the guy” in the Denver backfield last week, became the first back in the NFL this season with 100 rushing yards and 75 receiving yards in a game. He finished the week as fantasy’s top running back and has an arrow pointing straight up. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: The under is 6-0 when Denver covers games this season. Read more.
Woodyard’s pick: Broncos 24, Lions 21
Legwold’s pick: Broncos 23, Lions 16
FPI prediction: DEN, 76.1% (by an average of 9.4 points)
Matchup must-reads: Lions dedicate first win to Oxford community … Broncos must treat every game moving forward like it’s the playoffs … How the Lions’ win affected their chance at No. 1 pick … Why can’t the Broncos get the ball to Sutton?
4:25 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 93.9 | Spread: TB -3.5 (53.5)
What to watch for: Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady facing the Bills’ vaunted pass defense might be the storyline going into this game, but this one could very well be won and lost on the ground. The Bills surrendered 222 rushing yards to the Patriots on Monday night and have given up 12 rushing touchdowns this season, while Tampa Bay running back Leonard Fournette has had five touchdowns in his past two games. On the other side of the ball, the Bills have struggled to get the ground game going outside of quarterback Josh Allen, and that might happen again against a run defense that’s giving up just 84.3 yards per game, the second fewest in the league. — Jenna Laine
Bold prediction: The Bills’ league-leading pass defense will give Brady some troubles, limiting him to two or fewer passing touchdowns and forcing at least two interceptions. With Buffalo’s recent run defense woes, going through the air is not the best way to beat this team, even though Brady has had historic success against Buffalo and leads the NFL’s top passing offense. The Bills have allowed eight passing touchdowns this season and a 57.7% completion percentage to opposing passers, the lowest in the league. This unit has also forced 16 interceptions (third most). Cornerback Dane Jackson, filling in for the injured Tre’Davious White, will have his first big test in Tampa Bay, and being able to limit the Buccaneers’ passing offense could be the deciding factor in this game. — Alaina Getzenberg
Stat to know: Bills receiver Stefon Diggs needs 102 receiving yards to reach 1,000 on the season, which would make him the second player in Bills history with 1,000 in consecutive seasons (Stevie Johnson, three straight from 2010 to 2012).
What to know for fantasy: We’ve now had not one, not two, but three straight weeks in which the Bills failed to put their WR2 inside the top 30 at the position in fantasy. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Brady is 21-12-1 ATS in his career against Buffalo. Read more.
Getzenberg’s pick: Bills 31, Buccaneers 30
Laine’s pick: Buccaneers 21, Bills 17
FPI prediction: TB, 57.5% (by an average of 2.6 points)
Matchup must-reads: Missed opportunities and differing philosophies? Bills’ offense has work to do … Buccaneers’ Brady, Gronkowski move into 2nd all-time in regular-season TD connections … Patriots-Buccaneers rematch in the Super Bowl? Why the NFL’s best defense vs. best offense is now most likely
4:25 p.m. ET | CBS
Matchup rating: 59.3 | Spread: SF -1 (49)
What to watch for: The 49ers ran all over the Bengals in their 2019 matchup. Since that game, the Bengals rebuilt their defense, which is aimed to stop the run. San Francisco is second in the league in percentage of designed run plays, per ESPN Stats & Information research, and eighth in the league in total rushing yards. Cincinnati, meanwhile, is sixth in the NFL in rush defense success rate. How the Bengals’ run defense performs will be a big factor on Sunday. — Ben Baby
Bold prediction: Niners tight end George Kittle will score twice. He has five receiving touchdowns since Week 9, tied for most in the NFL, while the Bengals have yielded four receiving touchdowns to tight ends in that same span. Even just one more score would give Kittle a career high for a season. — Nick Wagoner
Stat to know: Bengals running back Joe Mixon has scored a touchdown in nine straight games, one shy of matching the longest streak in Bengals history (Carl Pickens, 10 straight from 1994 to 1995).
Field Yates discusses whether Deebo Samuel could see time at the running back position this week.
Wagoner’s pick: Bengals 27, 49ers 24
Baby’s pick: Bengals 23, 49ers 19
FPI prediction: SF, 51.5% (by an average of 0.6 points)
8:20 p.m. ET | NBC
Matchup rating: 50.5 | Spread: GB -12.5 (43)
What to watch for: Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers had the bye week to let his fractured toe heal but said he won’t know how much improvement it made until he gets into the game. He was limping at times during the Packers’ last game, on Nov. 28 against the Rams, but it didn’t seem to impact his performance. This game, however, could indicate how much trouble it will cause him the rest of the way. — Rob Demovsky
Bold prediction: Bears quarterback Justin Fields will top the 60% accuracy mark (surpassing his season average of 58.1%) in his return following a two-game absence from a rib injury — but he will throw at least one interception against a Packers defense that is tied for ninth in the NFL with 12 of them. — Demovsky
Stat to know: Packers receiver Davante Adams is two receiving touchdowns shy of tying Jordy Nelson (69) for the second most in franchise history.
What to know for fantasy: Chicago running back David Montgomery has scored over 25 fantasy points in consecutive games against the Packers, catching 14 of 15 targets over that stretch and averaging 5.2 yards per carry. See Week 14 rankings.
Betting nugget: Green Bay is 10-2 ATS this season, the best mark in the league, including 5-0 ATS at home. Read more.
Demovsky’s pick: Packers 31, Bears 20
FPI prediction: GB, 80.5% (by an average of 11.4 points)
What to watch for: Arizona quarterback Kyler Murray is back from a high left ankle sprain and wants to throw more downfield this week — but he’ll have to keep an eye on the Rams’ talented defensive front, which includes defensive tackle Aaron Donald and edge rusher Von Miller. This could come down to a game of cat and mouse between those two pass-rushers and Murray, who, as everyone knows, is one of the best in the NFL at making plays with his feet. — Josh Weinfuss
Bold prediction: This matchup will turn into a quarterback duel between Matthew Stafford and Murray, who rank third and fourth, respectively, in total QBR this season. Both will pass for at least 300 yards, with Cardinals receiver DeAndre Hopkins and Rams receiver Cooper Kupp both tallying 100-yard receiving games. — Lindsey Thiry
Stat to know: Rams receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has scored a touchdown in each of his past two games. That’s his first time with a TD in consecutive games since 2019, and he has not had receiving TDs in three straight games since 2015, when he was still with the Giants.
What to know for fantasy: Murray scored 22.6 fantasy points in the Week 4 meeting with the Rams, the best game of his career against the divisional rival. See Week 14 rankings.
Mike Clay breaks down the key matchups for DeAndre Hopkins and the Cardinals wide receivers vs. the Rams.
Betting nugget: Los Angeles is 8-1 ATS against Arizona under coach Sean McVay. But Arizona’s only cover came in Week 4. Read more.
Thiry’s pick: Cardinals 32, Rams 30
Weinfuss’ pick: Cardinals 37, Rams 30
FPI prediction: ARI, 59.3% (by an average of 3.2 points)
Matchup must-reads: This is 40: Rams’ Whitworth doing something no other left tackle has done … Is Murray the best high school QB from Texas? … Ramsey makes special connection with Rams’ mariachi band