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Oct. 10, 2010

NFL Week Five Predictions

by Blake Morgan-Gamber, Online Features and Sports Editor, Eli Schwadron, Online Sports Editor and Melissa Haniff, Online Managing Editor
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel is looking to keep his team undefeated when they play the Colts this Sunday. Courtesy of Zimbio.com
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel is looking to keep his team undefeated when they play the Colts this Sunday.
Last week offered up several intense and interesting games for the fans. Baltimore was able to break Pittsburgh’s undefeated streak and the Redskins dominated the Eagles, making ‘Skins fans and most of the DMV ecstatic. The Browns somehow beat the Cincinnati Bengals and left T.O., Ochocinco and the rest of the Bengals confused.

The experts all stayed at .500 or over this week, with Eli continuing his dominance over Blake and Melissa. But Blake’s not far behind at all and, if she’s able to cash in on a few games this week, could possibly overtake Eli. Melissa, well, it doesn’t really look like she’s going to be able to catch up with Eli and Blake. If only the Lions hadn’t been robbed of a win against Chicago...

But it’s only week five, so we’ll see what happens next.

Standings:
Eli: 42-20
Blake: 38-24
Melissa: 29-32

Sunday, Oct. 10

Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2) at Buffalo Bills (0-4)
Blake- Jaguars
Eli- Jaguars
Melissa- Jaguars
Blake says:
The jaguars are coming off a clutch, down to the wire win against the Colts last Sunday and should be able to keep their momentum alive. Facing the winless Bills, veteran quarterback David Garrard should use his experience to dish the ball to his receivers and but up big numbers for Jacksonville.
Eli says:
The Jags got a big win over Indianapolis last week thanks to a 59-yard game-winning kick from Josh Scobee. They'll ride their momentum and beat a Buffalo team that was obliterated by the Jets.
Melissa says:
The Jags proved last week that they can put points on the board, even against a high powered team like the Colts. Besides, they’re playing the Bills... it can’t get any easier than that.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1) at Cincinnati Bengals (2-2)
Blake- Bengals
Eli- Buccaneers
Melissa- Bengals
Blake says:
Despite a hard loss to Cleveland last week, the Bengals showed no mercy. Wide receiver Terrell Owens had 222 of the Bengals total 413 yards; if he can have an equally stellar performance and quarterback Carson Palmer can get T.O. the ball, the Bengals should be able to pull this one out.
Eli says:
The Bengals are coming off a brutal loss to the lowly Browns. The Bucs are just coming off a bye week and will be well-rested when they face off against Cincy. Tampa pulls it out in a slop-fest.
Melissa says:
The Bengals somehow lost to the Browns last week which, in my opinion, is pretty sad. This week, they’re playing a 2-1 Tampa Bay team that’s coming off a bye week. Cincy needs this win and I’m thinking they’ll get it.


Atlanta Falcons (3-1) at Cleveland Browns (1-3)
Blake- Falcons
Eli- Falcons
Melissa- Falcons
Blake says:
Atlanta is well balanced—they’ve got a solid defense and an offensive line that’s ranked sixth in league for most yards gained per game with 389.3 yards. Their defense is known for interceptions, (they’ve averaged about eight per game), and have forced, on average, three turnovers per game, which will be too much for the Browns to handle.
Eli says:
The Falcons didn't play well against the Niners last week, but still managed a 16-14 win. They'll continue their winning streak vs. the 1-3 Browns.
Melissa says:
Falcons should win this one easily. Yes, the Browns beat the Bengals last week but that was a fluke. Let’s be honest, there’s no way the Browns are better than the Bengals, and they’re definitely not better than the Falcons. Atlanta wins big.


St. Louis Rams (2-2) at Detroit Lions (0-4)
Blake- Lions
Eli- Lions
Melissa- Lions
Blake says:
It’s time for the Lions to turn things around. And as they still remain without a win going into week five, the Rams have definitely lucky. This may be a risky choice but I’m looking for Detroit to find some momentum and edge past St. Louis.
Eli says:
Yes, it's true—the St. Louis Rams have won two games in a row. No, the world is not coming to an end. However, they will fall to the Lions this week. Detroit has to win at some point, so why not this week against a rookie quarterback in Bradford, and a team that relies solely on Steven Jackson? Congrats, Melissa! Your beloved Lions finally get the “W”.
Melissa says:
Let’s be honest, I have nothing to lose by picking the Lions. Since I’m already last in the standings and it doesn’t look like that’s going to change, I’ll take my chances and pick Detroit to beat the Rams. The Rams have been playing well, but Detroit’s putting points on the board every game—they just can’t seem to pull it together and win. If Lions quarterback Shaun Hill can hook up with Calvin “Megatron” Johnson and score some touchdowns, I’m crossing my fingers that Detroit can actually beat the Rams.


Kansas City Chiefs (3-0) at Indianapolis Colts (2-2)
Blake- Colts
Eli- Colts
Melissa- Colts
Blake says:
After being one of the top teams for the last five seasons, the Colts know how to win and are used to it, plain and simple. For the Chiefs, having such a successful season has been somewhat surprising and they’ll get their first loss this week.
Eli says:
Oh my god, the Chiefs are undefeated! And the Colts are just 2-2! I should pick the Chiefs…but I won’t. Regardless of record, the Colts are still the Colts, and the Chiefs are still a team whose best player the casual NFL fan probably couldn't name. Indy rolls.
Melissa says:
The Kansas City Chiefs are the only undefeated team in the NFL at the moment. Indianapolis is coming off a loss to the Jaguars and looking to prove that they are still a force to be reckoned with in the league. Although it’s definitely possible that Kansas City could pull out a win against the Colts, I’ll take Indianapolis, because they really need this win to show that they are still an elite team.


Green Bay Packers (3-1) at Washington Redskins (2-2)
Blake- Packers
Eli- Redskins
Melissa- Packers
Blake says:
The Packers have got defensive end Clay Matthews, who’s big, experienced and with seven of the team’s 16 sacks, he’s ruthless. As much as I hate to say it, I’m not sure even Donovan McNabb can handle such a defensive powerhouse that the Packers possess.
Eli says:
I should probably go with the Pack, but after seeing the Skins beat Philly last week, I have faith in them. Ryan Torain looked good in week four and should be able to carry the load with Portis out four to six weeks. Washington should squeak another one out against a Green Bay team that hasn't looked amazing despite a solid 3-1 record.
Melissa says:
After a win over the Eagles, the ‘Skins are flying high and are looking to get another win in week five—but I just don’t see that happening. Yet strangely, every time I pick against the Redskins they somehow pull off a win. Anyways, that’s beside the point; the Packers will win on Sunday.


Chicago Bears (3-1) at Carolina Panthers (0-4)
Blake- Bears
Eli- Bears
Melissa- Bears
Blake says:
Despite their first loss of the season to the Giants last Sunday, the Bears shouldn’t have a problem with the Panthers, who are yet to win a game. I would say this is an interesting match up since the Bears now have defensive end Julius Peppers; however, despite his dislike for his former Panthers, Peppers only has two sacks for the entire season thus far. Although this game might get close, the Panthers won’t get their first win in week five.
Eli says:
It's not so much that the Bears are a great football team – it's that the Panthers are just awful. Expect Chicago to go into Carolina and hand them their fifth defeat of the season.
Melissa says:
Easy. Panthers rookie quarterback Jimmy Clausen still hasn’t found his niche yet, and the Bears are looking for blood after losing to the Giants last Sunday. Bears win.


Denver Broncos (2-2) at Baltimore Ravens (3-1)
Blake- Ravens
Eli- Ravens
Melissa- Broncos
Blake says:
With a stellar defense and the leadership of quarterback Joe Flacco on the offensive end, how can the Ravens go wrong? This season, the Ravens’ defense has allowed the fewest yards gained per game this season with just 247.5, as well as only let four touchdowns be scored on them. The Broncos don’t have the offensive man power to break the Ravens’ run.
Eli says:
This one's tough— Orton's been playing well, as completed 35 of 50 passes last week for 341 yards and two touchdowns. The Ravens came back to beat the Steelers last week and have looked great on the defensive end. If Baltimore can improve on the offensive side of the ball then they'll beat Denver on Sunday.
Melissa says:
This is probably the best match-up of the week. Both teams are coming in off solid wins over Tennessee and Pittsburgh, respectively. Baltimore beat the Steelers late in the fourth quarter last Sunday and barely etched out a win. But Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton has been playing exceptionally well and has been able to lead his team to victory while putting points on the board. I’ll take Denver to beat Baltimore in what looks to be an intense game.


New York Giants (2-2) at Houston Texans (3-1)
Blake- Texans
Eli- Texans
Melissa- Texans
Blake says:
The Texans have been off to a promising start and look to keep it up after week five. With last season’s defensive rookie of the year, Brian Cushing, returning, at this point, Houston is the team to beat. The Giant’s offense isn’t nearly strong enough to handle a team with a rushing defense that’s ranked second overall in the NFL.
Eli says:
Arian Foster is a monster, and if the G-Men find a way to shut him down then they'll have their hands full with the Houston passing game. Even though they beat Chicago last week, Manning is just too inconsistent for me to pick the Giants in this one. The Texans look like the favorites to win their division right now so expect them to beat a struggling New York squad.
Melissa says:
Houston has only lost one game and their high octane offense has been making plays. The Matt Schaub-Andre Johnson duo never fails to disappoint. But the Giants are coming in after a convincing victory over the Bears in which the Giants’ defense forced ten sacks. If Houston’s offensive line can stop the Giants’ defense from getting to Schaub, Houston will be able to pull out the win.


New Orleans Saints (3-1) at Arizona Cardinals (2-2)
Blake- Saints
Eli- Saints
Melissa- Saints
Blake says:
Quarterback Drew Brees should have no problem leading New Orleans to a victory over the Cardinals, who are struggling as we enter week five. Brees has 1,131 passing yards, the fourth most in the league, should be able to distribute the ball well, even with the absence of running back Pierre Thomas, who is out with a sprained ankle.
Eli says:
New Orleans should roll as long as Brees looks like the Brees he was last season. Otherwise, the Saints will only win by one touchdown, not three. Either way, the Cards are doomed.
Melissa says:
The Cards were crushed by the Chargers last week, losing by 31 points. The Saints haven’t been playing their best football, but they should be able to earn a win against a struggling Arizona team.


Tennessee Titans (2-2) at Dallas Cowboys (1-2)
Blake- Cowboys
Eli- Cowboys
Melissa- Titans
Blake says:
With a bye last week, the Cowboys are rearing to go and ready to take on the Titans. This game is easily a toss up though—while Dallas has won their last five games that have come after having a week off, the Titans haven’t loss to the Cowboys at all in the past ten times they have played each other.
Eli says:
As I've said before, I hate picking the Cowboys. But they looked good in week three and they're rested after a week four bye week. The Titans struggled last week in a 26-20 loss to the Broncos, so Dallas should be able to put them away.
Melissa says:
The Titans lost last week to the Broncos, who rallied in the fourth quarter to score and ensure a win. Chris Johnson was shut down offensively, running for only 53 yards. Dallas is coming in off a bye week. Two weeks ago, they beat the Texans 27-13, and most Cowboys fans are hoping that Dallas will come into week five prepared to beat the Titans, but I doubt that will happen. Tennessee’s biggest problem is that they rely so much on Chris Johnson—Vince Young is good, but not great. If Johnson is able to get past Dallas’ defense, the Titans will win this game.


San Diego Chargers (2-2) at Oakland Raiders (1-3)
Blake- Chargers
Eli- Chargers
Melissa- Chargers
Blake says:
San Diego hasn’t lost to the Raiders in seven years, and it doesn’t look like that pattern is going to change anytime soon. After their loss to Seattle in week three, the Chargers are looking to turn things around and win their first game on the road this season.
Eli says:
The Chargers dominated Arizona last week in a huge 41-10 win. Tight end Antonio Gates caught seven balls for 144 yards and two touchdowns. Expect Philip Rivers to get him the rock some more this week as San Diego crushes their fellow AFC West opponent, Oakland.
Melissa says:
Chargers should be able to defeat Oakland easily…I mean, they haven’t lost to Oakland in seven years, it’ll be hard to break that record.


Philadelphia Eagles (2-2) at San Francisco 49ers (0-4)
Blake- 49ers
Eli- 49ers
Melissa- Eagles
Blake says:
I’m predicting a first season win for the 49ers come Sunday. The Eagles are too inconsistent with their quarterbacks and its hurting team chemistry.
Eli says:
The Eagles struggled mightily against the Skins after Vick came out with a painful rib injury. Kevin Kolb takes the reins once again as Philly plays San Francisco on Sunday night. The 0-4 Niners are desperate for a win after a crushing, 16-14 loss to the Falcons last week. They'll beat the Eagles this week thanks to a big game from Frank Gore.
Melissa says:
Eagles are up in the air right now, and with quarterback Michael Vick out with a rib injury, Kevin Kolb will be taking over. The 49ers are, surprisingly enough, winless, and even though they almost beat Atlanta last week, they couldn’t hold on to their lead. I’ll take the Eagles to win, but this game could easily go either way.


Monday, Oct. 11

Minnesota Vikings (1-2) at New York Jets (3-1)
Blake- Jets
Eli- Vikings
Melissa- Jets
Blake says:
The Vikings can’t catch a break and, unfortunately for them, they won’t get that second win of the season that their looking for this week. The Jets are second in the league for rushing yards with 167.8 overall, and have both out rushed and out tackled all of their opponents thus far.
Eli says:
Randy Moss, anyone?
Melissa says:
Randy Moss was traded to Minnesota this week from New England. Why, might you ask? I honestly don’t know. The Vikings’ problem isn’t that they need another receiver—they already have Sidney Rice and Percy Harvin, along with tight end Visanthe Shiancoe. Their problem is that they brought back quarterback Brett Favre, who should have just stayed retired in the first place. Jets’ quarterback Mark Sanchez has been playing well and New York’s defense should be able to continue to shut Brett Favre down. Jets win in Monday Night Football.



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  • YOU KNOW on October 10, 2010 at 11:03 PM
    These predictions are biased
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