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N.F.L. Week 12 Predictions: Our Picks Against the Spread

The Chargers’ last four games have been decided by one score and even if they are a better team, the potential absences of defensive tackle Linval Joseph, who is on the Covid-19 list, and cornerback Asante Samuel Jr., who is in the concussion protocol for the second time this season, could display Los Angeles’s propensity for unnecessary fourth-quarter drama. Fresh off their bye, Denver designated linebacker Bradley Chubb to return from injured reserve, and his presence would help stop Chargers running back Austin Ekeler, who scored four touchdowns last week. Denver can win outright, or keep it within the spread. Pick: Broncos +2.5

Seattle Seahawks at Washington Footballers, 8:15 p.m., ESPN

Line: Washington -1 | Total: 46.5

The Seahawks (3-7) have become irrelevant. The defense is still one of the worst in the league, allowing the third-most passing yards per game (279.6). The offense, even with Russell Wilson back from finger surgery, is inept, especially now that running back Chris Carson is officially out for the remainder of the year with a neck issue.

Taylor Heinicke has played well recently, leading Washington (4-6) to two straight wins, and he has not thrown an interception in that time frame. Each week gives Wilson and his agent more material to request a trade this off-season. A loss to Washington in prime time could be a final straw. Pick: Washington -1

Bears 16, Lions 14

We picked the Bears to cover -3.5, figuring that this battle of two bad offenses would turn on Detroit running back D’Andre Swift having a third straight 100-yard rushing game.

We picked wrong. Swift exited the game in the second quarter with a shoulder injury but the Lions (0-10-1) carried a lead late into the fourth before falling to the Bears (4-7), who connected on Cairo Santos’s 28-yard field goal attempt as time expired.

Chicago’s Andy Dalton had 317 yards on 24 of 39 passing, with one touchdown, in place of Justin Fields, who injured his knee in Week 11.

In Jared Goff’s return from an abdominal injury, the Lions managed to take a 14-13 lead in the third quarter on Goff’s 17-yard touchdown pass to T.J. Hockenson. Detroit could have extended its lead on a final fourth-quarter possession but was assessed penalties on three consecutive plays and had to punt. Dalton drove the Bears 41 yards before Santos’s field goal sailed through.

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