Friday, October 7, 2011

NFL Week 5 Predictions

I woke up this morning to the drum-pounding feeling of about 11 Miller High Life's. Classy, I know. But that was my way of coping with the Yankees last night. Don't really feel like talking about it. Let's get to the picks this weekend after the jump...

Sunday, October 9th (1:00 ET Kickoffs)
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Indianapolis Colts (-2)
Peyton Manning is talking about playing this year. I don't see why he would come back to an undefeated team. Something tells me he won't. I'll take the Colts in this game which will likely feature a heavy dose of field goal kickers, punters, and long snappers. 

Arizona Cardinals vs. Minnesota Vikings (-3)
The battle of the former Philly QBs! The Vikings have to turn this around sooner than later - continue pounding AP (pause) on the ground, and play some defense. I didn't watch any of the game against the Chiefs last week because I actually wanted to stay awake and I don't intend to watch a single snap from this game either - but I'd side with the Vikings in this one. 

Philadelphia Eagles (-3) vs. Buffalo Bills
Dream Team talks are over. So too will the season for the Eagles if they can't get a win in Buffalo. This game comes down to a much more talented Eagles team going into Buffalo and doing what they've been expected to do all season - win games against lesser opponents. I will be rooting like crazy for the Eagles to choke again and hope that Andy Reid mis-manages the clock coming down the stretch, but truth be told I don't think it will come down to that. The Bills defense isn't very good and they won't have enough help at Linebacker to keep Michael Vick in check. If gambling were legal - I'd take the Eagles in this one. 

Oakland Raiders vs. Houston Texans (-6)
The Raiders are one of the few teams that I've come around on this year. Darren McFadden has solidified himself as a top 5 Running Back in the league - and this Raiders defense isn't all that bad. They'll have a much easier time not having to worry about WR Andre Johnson. The Texans are 5-8 in games without Johnson in the lineup - and while I think they'll win this game, I don't think they'll be able to separate themselves from the Raiders by too much. I'll take the points and the Raiders in this one.

New Orleans Saints (-6.5) vs. Carolina Panthers
The Panthers have a 1-3 record but they have been one of the most surprising teams in the league. Cam Newton can keep the team in games by himself. I just don't think it will happen this weekend. The Saints are too strong, put up loads of points, and can close out games with a strong 3 RB attack. I'll side with the Saints in this one. 

Cincinnati Bengals vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (-2.5)
I'll take the Bengals. Dalton over Gabbert. That's all I got. 

Tennessee Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (-3)
No James Harrison, Big Ben is all banged up, and Rashard Mendenhall might not play. All signs point to the Titans in this one - but this feels like the type of game that the Steelers rally - play that Steel Curtain defense - and get a much needed win at home. I think the Steelers are still too well coached and have too much talent to miss the playoffs. If they lose this game and drop to 2-3 in a division in which all the teams are .500 their season could likely be over. I'm not ready to write them off just yet. I'll take the Steelers at home minus the points.

Seattle Seahawks vs. New York Giants (-9.5)
I took the Giants this week in the survivor pick - I still feel good about that pick and I like the Giants against the spread in this one as well. 

Sunday, October 9th (4:00 ET Kickoffs)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. San Francisco 49ers (-3)
Hmm this is an interesting matchup between two NFC powerhouses - wait, what? Are the 49ers for real 3-1? I can't knock their hustle - they have a good defense anchored by LB Patrick Willis. They understand that Alex Smith isn't going to win many games which makes their offense much more conservative in nature so they tend to depend on their defense to keep them around. I could see this game coming down to the last drive - I'll side with the 49ers to make it 4-1 on the season. 

New York Jets vs. New England Patriots (-9)
The Jets offense is a joke. That performance against the Ravens was downright embarrassing to the sport of Football. Now, my highest level of Football competition is comprised of about 13 years of Madden and playing QB for a flag football team in college. Maybe I'm not the right person to ask but three key things the Jets should go over in preparation for the Patriots - If there's a defender in front of your receiver you don't throw the ball - If you feel a pocket collapsing - throw the ball away - Lastly, figure out how to successfully snap the ball from Center to QB. The Jets get C Nick Mangold back this week so I expect them to at least improve on one facet - I doubt they win this game but I expect them to keep this game close. I'll take the Jets plus the points. 

San Diego Chargers (-4) vs. Denver Broncos
Division matchup in Mile High. I'm sure there's an easy joke here about illegal drugs- but i'll keep it PG. I still don't fully trust the Chargers. This just feels like the type of game that Denver wins at home and then is never heard from for the rest of the season. I'll toke the Broncos plus the points at home.

Sunday, October 9th (8:30 ET Kickoff)
Green Bay Packers (-6) vs. Atlanta Falcons 
Rematch of last years playoff game in which the Packers absolutely torched the Falcons. The Falcons sole objective since that game was to improve and win these shootouts. They went out and traded about 49 picks to draft WR Julio Jones. They've already beaten the Eagles and Seahawks in these games and I expect them to keep pace at home against the Packers. I'll take the Falcons in this one - hopefully it's not as bad as the Jets/Ravens.

Monday, October 10th (8:40 ET Kickoff)
Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions (-5.5)
The city of Detroit will have to come down to earth eventually - I just don't think it will happen on Monday Night. Ever since this commercial aired things have been going well for Detroit. The Tigers are headed to the ALCS, The Lions are 4-0, and their WNBA team relocated to Tulsa. The Lions have been too good of a story led by my early season MVP Calvin Johnson. This will be the perfect exposure for a franchise that has suffered greatly the past decade. I look for the Lions to continue their unblemished season and improve to 5-0 at home. Take the Lions and lay the points. 

Happy Engagement Weekend Daz and Sonia! Such a beautiful couple :)

Last Week: 5-11
Season Record: 34-28-2

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