NFL Week 12 Picks

June 19th NFL news ... NFL Week 12 Picks at


One of Auburn or No. 6 LSU will be dealt its first loss of the season Saturday night as the two Tigers of the SEC come to battle in Baton Rouge.

After going a dreadful 0-8 SU and 2-6 ATS in the SEC last year, Auburn is looking to reverse its fortunes with new head coach Gus Malzahn, who has led them to a 3-0 SU start, though they have yet to hit the road or be an underdog yet. The blue and orange-clad Tigers are 1-2 ATS in those three games and are coming off an ATS loss to Mississippi State in which they failed to cover a 6.5-point spread in a 24-20 victory. The purple and gold Tigers are 3-0 SU to start the year as well but 2-1 ATS, failing to cover only in their last game, a 32-point win against Kent State in which the spread was 35.5 points. When these two teams met last year in Auburn, LSU won 12-10, but didnt come close to covering the lofty 18-point spread. And Auburn should feel good about going in and covering against a Les Miles-led team as the veteran head coach is just 9-22 ATS at home against SEC opponents since taking over the reins at LSU. Auburn meanwhile is actually a respectable 18-15 ATS over the past four years against SEC opponents, especially remarkable given last years 2-6 figure.

Auburns offense has looked strong to start the year, putting up 459 yards against Mississippi State last week. QB Nick Marshall has looked better each game throughout the season and is now 43-for-70 for 585 yards and 4 TD and 2 INT through two games. He also has 102 rushing yards. Marshall has also proven he can score from anywhere on the field, hitting WR Sammie Coats (seven receptions for 167 yards) with a 68-yard touchdown and WR Quan Bray (six receptions for 108 yards) with a 76-yard touchdown already this year. On the ground, RB Corey Grant leads the team with 230 yards to go along with two touchdowns, though the two other backs have both received more carries than him. RB Tre Mason has also broken the 200-yard plateau with 39 carries for 206 yards and two touchdowns while Cameron Artis-Payne (35 carries for 166 yards, 1 TD) has also had his moments. This three-headed duo will be critical in helping Auburn manage the clock against a dynamic LSU offense that has scored at least 37 points in each of its three games this season.

LSUs offensive juggernaut is led in the air by 6-foot-5 senior QB Zach Mettenberger, who has completed 45-of-69 passes for 797 yards and nine touchdowns already this season. More impressively perhaps, he has yet to throw an interception and has been sacked only twice. All nine of his touchdown passes have been to two people: WR Odell Beckham (15 receptions for 330 yards and 4 TD) and WR Jarvis Landry (17 receptions for 246 yards and 5 TD). This is not a one-dimensional offense, however. RB Terrence Magee is averaging 8.1 yards per carry with three touchdowns and 210 yards early on this season, having already ripped off a 52-yard run. RB Jeremy Hill has pulled off his own 58-yard touchdown run while he has picked up 17 carries for 167 yards and three scores. And that makes no mention of RB Alfred Blue, who leads the team in carries with 32, and has 153 yards, which at 4.8 yards per carry is still nothing to sneeze at.

Omaha Beef indoor team offers Tebow a deal

The Nebraska team called the NFL Lines office of Tebow's agent Jimmy Sexton to offer a standard player contract, which includes a salary of $75 a day. Beef assistant GM Andrew Mather told TV station WOWT Omaha Tuesday that he doesn't expect to hear back, but wanted to ask.

Current Beef's quarterback, James McNear, has thrown for 21 touchdowns while leading his team to a 5-1 start, and would welcome Tebow's arrival.

"I think Tim can learn a lot from me."

While Tebow is unlikely to suit up for the beef, he's won't be wearing a Jacksonville Jaguars uniform either, as that team quickly moved to dispel any rumors about their interest in man who won the Heisman Trophy while at the University of Florida.

"The Jacksonville Jaguars' plans do not include Tim Tebow," Jim Woodcock, spokesman for team owner Shad Khan, wrote in an email to the Times-Union Monday.

The statement is consistent with the team's position all along regarding Tebow, amid all the speculation that he would be cut by the Jets.

A year earlier, the Jaguars nearly landed Tebow from Denver, which had recently signed Peyton Manning. The team offered a fourth-round pick and a willingness to pay part of Tebow's salary advance, but he was sent to the Jets instead, who offered Denver a similar deal.

Afterward, Khan told the paper that Tebow didn't want to play for the Jaguars.

"He didn't want to come, obviously. ... Any one of the 53 players we have, have to be committed to Jacksonville, making us be the best team we are," Khan said.

Jacksonville currently has four quarterbacks on the roster: veterans Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne and undrafted rookies Matt Scott (Arizona) and Jordan Rodgers (Vanderbilt).

The Canadian Football League also seems unlikely as a landing spot. The Montreal Alouettes own Tebow's exclusive CFL negotiating rights, but general manager Jim Popp told the Montreal Gazette that his team has plenty of signal callers.

"We have quarterbacks under contract," Jim Popp told the Gazette. "We're going to camp in a month. We've got a starting quarterback. I'm not out there enticing or trying to convince [Tebow] to come to Montreal because he's [not] going to be a starting quarterback. He would be coming to Montreal to be a backup player ... to learn the game and, maybe, in the future, he'll be able to compete for a starting job."