NFL picks, Week 14: KC Chiefs look to bounce back against familiar foe

Week 14 of the NFL slate is officially here, and we're here every week of the season to bring you picks for the Chiefs along with the rest of the NFL!

Kansas City Chiefs v Green Bay Packers
Kansas City Chiefs v Green Bay Packers / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages

There's a gross feeling associated with staying up later than you typically would on a Sunday night to watch the Kansas City Chiefs blow a game like they did Sunday against the Packers. Everyone's familiar with the Sunday Scaries as is, but when something like that happens, the sense of anxiety associated with those negative emotions goes through the roof. I, for one, woke up in a terrible mood on Monday morning and threw my whole day into a tailspin mainly because I was sleep-deprived, but also because I kept coming back to the thought that the Chiefs are at least 2-3 games worse right now than they actually should be based on the talent on the roster.

Yeah, I said it. The roster in Kansas City is fantastic. Sure, the receiving corps leaves some things to be desired, and yeah, the offensive line tends to make boneheaded mistakes at the worst possible times, and yeah, the defense looked like it took a step backward against Green Bay's physical run game and play-action pass combination. But those things on offense are correctable, and the defensive woes were largely due to the absences of Nick Bolton and Drue Tranquill.

Where does the loss leave the team from a go-forward standpoint? Well, first of all, the Chiefs have lost control (to an extent) of their own destiny as far as playoff standings go. The Jaguars' loss to the Bengals on Monday helped, but Miami and Baltimore both have a leg up on K.C. in the standings at the moment. What is the difference between the Chiefs and those two? Baltimore and Miami have yet to play each other. Miami still has to take on the Cowboys and Bills, and Baltimore still has the Rams, Jaguars, 49ers, and Steelers to deal with—all team that are in playoff contention.

The Chiefs, on the other hand, have five games against teams that are at or under .500, and they will be favored in all five remaining games. Does this guarantee a 13-4 finish and the top seed in the AFC? No, but it does give them a better chance to end up at that destination than Miami and Baltimore. There's always a silver lining when you look closely, and you can find it even if you're still cursing Skyy Moore.

Last week included a couple of upsets, but overall, the record on the picks last week was still pretty solid. An 8-5 week put us at 125-69 for the year (64% win percentage), so we're still standing tall here at Arrowhead Addict picks for 2023. In a completely unpredictable year, including our Chiefs, we continue to be one of the better outlets on the internet for feeding you picks every week. The real question is: if you're not tailing the moneyline picks here, why not? I, of course, still encourage those of you who (legally) wager to do so responsibly.

Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs

Well, well, well. The Chiefs are reeling from a loss to the Packers just in time for a familiar foe—the Buffalo Bills—to come to Arrowhead. The Bills have been a crap shoot at best in 2023, coming in with a 6-6 record but are fresh off a bye. They've seen good Josh Allen and bad Josh Allen wrapped into one, gigantic, athletic version of Josh Allen so far this year, and the result of this contest will ultimately come down to which version of Allen Steve Spagnuolo can coax out on Sunday.

How the Chiefs handle Allen and the Bills' offense will ultimately boil down to the status of Drue Tranquill and Nick Bolton. At the moment, Tranquill is still in concussion protocol and Bolton is working his way back from a dislocated wrist. If either (or both) are able to go, the Chiefs' defense should regain the bite they had in Weeks 1-12 that was missing against Green Bay.

As much as the Chiefs need this game, the Bills need it more. With a 6-6 record, Buffalo is currently on the outside looking in as the 11 seed in the AFC. So to say that Kansas City will get a sense of urgency from Buffalo in this game would be an understatement.

If there's one thing about this Chiefs team, though, it's that they have shown up to play in big games. Even in the loss to the Eagles, the Chiefs were the more physical team. It will boil down to the Chiefs playing a clean game. Can that happen? We will see Sunday, but the feeling I'm getting from 1 Arrowhead Drive is that the team is more apt to show up pissed off this week than they are to get pissed on again. Chiefs 27, Bills 24

New England Patriots at Pittsburgh Steelers

If you want to watch a game where next to no points will be scored, tune in Thursday night. This game will be an absolute snoozefest, so much so that when Amazon aired the preview graphic for this game a couple of weeks ago it included Steelers star T.J. Watt and... Bill Belichick. There's not a single player on the Patriots that Amazon thought was worthy of even putting in a graphic. That should tell you enough about where New England has fallen, as their Monday night game with the Chiefs (a primetime darling) was flexed to Sunday at noon. Steelers 13, Patriots 10

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Atlanta Falcons

Part 1 of 2, NFC South pillow fight week. The Bucs travel to Atlanta to take on the NFC South-leading Falcons, and we're all fired up here for a Baker Mayfield vs. Desmond Ridder showdown. Yes, I had to check ESPN to see if Ridder was still starting for Atlanta. Someone has to win this division and someone has to win this game, so I'm going to go heads Bucs, tails Falcons. The coin says Tampa. Buccaneers 21, Falcons 20

Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears

Chicago has looked chippier in their last few games and played Detroit to within a score back on November 19. The Bears aren't really in the playoff hunt at this point, so their sole purpose may just be derailing the hopes and dreams of their division rivals at this point. Detroit looked good offensively against New Orleans last week but allowed the Saints 28 points. Are we seeing a defensive regression that Justin Fields can take advantage of on Sunday? I'm taking the Lions on odds alone here, but the Bears will make this interesting. Lions 28, Bears 25

Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals' win over the Jaguars, while potentially aided by Trevor Lawrence's exit, had to be a shock to everyone. Who imagined the Jake Browning-led Cincinnati team would contend with a Jacksonville squad that was 8-3 coming in? The Bengals, that's who. And that's ultimately all that matters. This Cincinnati squad is still as talented as anyone in the league, and a home game against the mercurial Colts should result in another W to keep Cincy in playoff contention. Bengals 24, Colts 21

Jacksonville Jaguars at Cleveland Browns

Classic showdown incoming between C.J. Beathard and Joe Flacco. Trevor Lawrence's status remains uncertain for Sunday's game, one that was circled on many calendars early as a showdown with playoff implications that has instead been bitten in the ass by the 2023 quarterback injury bug. If Lawrence can't go, Cleveland's defense should smother Jacksonville. Even if he can, he will be limited, but can Flacco spark enough juice for Cleveland to earn a W? This one is tough to pick, but I'll conditionally take the Browns at home assuming no T-Law. If he plays, I will be switching my pick in my weekly pick 'em league. Fair warning. Browns 13, Jaguars 10

Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints

Part 2 of 2, NFC South pillow fight week. The Panthers are just bad, and while Derek Carr got booed by the home crowd in New Orleans last week, even he has enough in the tank to take down this woeful Carolina team at home. It's too early to say if the Panthers "got it wrong" with Bryce Young because the cupboard is so bare around him, but C.J. Stroud has to be occupying a lot of mental real estate in Carolina's front office right now. Saints 23, Panthers 10

Houston Texans at New York Jets

So it would appear the Jets are going to come crawling back to Zach Wilson. In the college football world, many are saying that Florida State should boycott the Orange Bowl to prove a point to the CFP selection committee for putting the screws to them. Should Zach Wilson do the same to Robert Saleh and the Jets coaching staff for assuming Mike White gave them a better chance at winning? Who knows, maybe Aaron Rodgers will make an ayahuasca-fueled return that no one saw coming this Sunday. Unless that happens, the Texans should roll in this one. Texans 17, Jets 7

Los Angeles Rams at Baltimore Ravens

The Rams have become very, very interesting with Matt Stafford looking good for the first time since their 2021 Super Bowl run. Just in time to run into Baltimore's buzzsaw defense. I'm not saying the Rams don't have a chance—for the Chiefs' sake, I hope they win—but Baltimore is built much differently than Los Angeles, and they know what's at stake with their five remaining games. Ravens 33, Rams 24

Minnesota Vikings at Las Vegas Raiders

If someone asked me what I thought about this game via text, my response would be, "Oh, they're playing. Uh, idk." I'll just leave it at that. Minnesota is probably better, but I'm thinking the Josh Dobbs chariot has officially turned back into a pumpkin. Raiders 24, Vikings 20

Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers

The Seahawks were so close last week to grabbing a huge win against Dallas on Thursday Night Football, but the loss dropped them to 6-6 with San Francisco surging after a complete waxing of the Eagles in Philly. I don't see the 49ers' train getting derailed by Seattle at this point. 49ers 30, Seahawks 23

Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Chargers

Interesting matchup. The Chargers are on life support, and the Broncos are a win and a Chiefs loss away from being a game back in the division with a month to play. You could debate "who needs this more?" and both sides would be right. I like the Chargers to defend their so-called home turf in this one and keep their pulse for one more week. Chargers 23, Broncos 22

Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys

This is the one that most of America is waiting for this weekend. Dallas' high-flying offense and opportunistic defense meet Philadelphia's fierce pass rush and an offense that got stymied by San Francisco a week ago but can rack up points in a hurry. A win for Dallas would put both teams at 10-3 with 4 games to go in the season, and would go a long way in helping the Cowboys contend for the NFC's one seed.

This is the ultimate "Are they for real?" game for Dallas, but if you look at who they've been beating up on lately, I don't think Philadelphia is in that class. Dallas has won 6 of their last 7 since getting blown out by the 49ers, with wins against the Chargers (5-7), Rams (6-6, without Matthew Stafford at the time), Giants (4-8), Panthers (1-10), Commanders (4-9), and Seahawks (6-6). Their lone loss in that stretch? Philadelphia. I like the Eagles to take this one. Eagles 36, Cowboys 33

Tennessee Titans at Miami Dolphins

The Titans on primetime? I thought their games were being played on Nashville public access TV this year. Tennessee's defense is still stout and may give Miami problems in the run game, but no chance they slow the Dolphins down enough for their offense to keep pace. Dolphins 27, Titans 20

Green Bay Packers at New York Giants

This is certainly recency bias, but I think the Packers are actually...good? Maybe. The Giants are confirmed bad and not getting better any time soon, even if Tommy DeVito makes a mean gabagool. Packers 21, Giants 10

Bye weeks: Arizona Cardinals, Washington Commanders