Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 12/30/11

Del has fallen flat on his face.  After what was likely the most embarrassing week in the history of Del’s selections, the only thing left to play for in Week 17 is the top-3 selections and a little dignity.  Del completely blew it in Week 16, posting a repulsive 3-12 record against the spread.  Simply put, you can’t pick em any worse than that.  The decent news (if there is any) is that the top-3 selections are guaranteed to finish the season above the 50-percent mark, and we’ll be looking to kill those in the final week of the season.  Week 17 is all about figuring out who still has something to play for, and Del has done his best to sort that out and try to end the year on a high note.  Without further admission of guilt, here are Del’s NFL Picks Week 17, with top-3 analysis after the chart. Remember to check back later in the week for Doc Brown’s final selections of the year.

(ATS = Against the Spread, SU = Straight Up)

The Saints qualify as one of those teams with something to play for, and it doesn’t hurt that they’re also one of the NFL’s hottest teams. New Orleans has been lighting up the scoreboard, and that should continue against a weak Panthers defense. Drew Brees and company are battling it out with San Francisco for a first-round bye, and while it’s unlikely the Niners will lose to the Rams anything can happen. The Saints are going to give it their all in case San Francisco falters, and New Orleans trying it’s best won’t be a good thing for Cam Newton and company on the road. I expect the Saints to win by at least 10 in this one.

The second team I chose with something to play for happens to be playing a team with even more to play for. I’m taking the Ravens -2 on the road against the Bengals. I’m going with the Ravens simply because I believe they are the better team. Both teams have to give it their all, and here’s why. This game is a late game with the Patriots and Bills being an early game. If the Pats win, they clinch the No. 1 seed. If they lose, Baltimore is next in line. However, even if New England wins the Steelers also have a late game, meaning Baltimore will have to give it their all no matter what because they will be at risk of losing the No. 2 seed and a bye altogether if they lose and Pitt wins. Even tho the Bengals are in a situation of needing a win to get in, I think Baltimore is a better team than Cinci if both teams show up to play.

Finally, I’m going with Denver -3.5 at home against the Chiefs. The thing that scares everyone here is that Kyle Orton may want to extract revenge against his former team, but it’s not that simple. The Broncos play well at home and can clinch the AFC West with a win over Kansas City. Do I really need to say anything else? Tebow won’t lose. Jesus won’t allow it.

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