Our experts make a sharp turn around
Last week's match-ups left fans stunned and a bit confused. The Cowboys won their second game, beating a strong New York Giants defense that was expected to steamroll over the 'Boys. After a stupid mistake by quarterback Shaun Hill, Detroit lost to…the Bills—how utterly distressing. And then there was that Redskins' v. Eagles game where Philadelphia demolished Washington 59-28, leaving fans around the DMV shaking their heads in disappointment.
Our experts didn't fare too well this week, as many teams lost last minute games that they were initially favored to win. Blake did the best of all the experts this week, going 6-7. She's now right under Eli in the standings and with another week of smart picks, could overtake him by Week 13.
Sunday, Nov. 21
Buffalo Bills (1-8) at Cincinnati Bengals (2-7)
The Bills got their first win of the season last week—which I predicted—and they will win again in Cincinnati this week. I'm going with the underdog again since the Bengals playoff chances have diminished and the Bills seem to want it more.
The Bills got their first win of the season against Detroit last week. But the Bengals
played well in a 23-17 loss to the Colts in which Carson Palmer threw for 292 yards
and two touchdowns. I'll take Cincy at home.
Buffalo got their first win last week against the Lions, 14-12. Good for them, because it'll probably be their only win of the season. Even though Cincy has lost six straight, I don't see them losing to the Bills but they never cease to amaze me so who knows?
Detroit Lions (2-7) at Dallas Cowboys (2-7)
The Cowboys are looking for their second win in a row after an upset win against the Giants in week 10. Under new coach Jason Garrett, I look to see Dallas going on a long winning streak to end the season.
Dallas looked like a completely new team when they when into New York and beat
the 6-3 Giants in week ten. Jon Kitna threw for 327 yards and three touchdowns,
while rookie sensation Dez Bryant hauled in 104 yards and a score. The Lions, on
the other hand, gave Buffalo their first win last week. I'll go with Dallas at Cowboys
Oh look, it's our Thanksgiving Day teams playing each other the Sunday before Thanksgiving… Anyways, Dallas shocked everyone last week, beating a New York Giants' team that had one of the best defenses in the league going into to last Sunday. Right now, the battle is at quarterback. If Lions' quarterback Shaun Hill doesn't make another dumb decision like he did against the Bills last week, I think Detroit can beat Dallas.
Washington Redskins (4-5) at Tennessee Titans (5-4)
After playing their worst game of the year last week, I just can't make myself pick the Redskins against a strong Titans team. Tennessee desperately needs a win here to keep playoffs hopes alive.
The ‘Skins didn't play well last week – I'll leave it at that. I don't think Washington
will be able to stop Chris Johnson in week 11 as the Titans move to 6-4.
The Redskins looked miserable in a 59-28 loss to the Eagles. Even though the Redskins have talent, it looks like they still have some work to do. The Titans' running back Chris Johnson has been running over every team he's come in contact with (with the exception of Pittsburgh) and will do the same against a struggling Washington defense. Tennessee has been in a slump, considering their quarterback position is up in the air, but they seem to be in a better position to win than the Redskins are. Sorry 'Skins, another loss is headed your way.
Arizona Cardinals (3-6) at Kansas City Chiefs (5-4)
Being 4-0 at home, Kansas City is one of the toughest teams to beat in the NFC. Although they've lost two in a row, I have a feeling they're going to bounce back.
Both the Chiefs and Cards lost big last week. Denver blew out KC 49-29 while Seattle
handled Arizona 36-18. There was a bright spot for Kansas City, though – Matt
Cassel threw for 469 yards and four touchdowns in the loss. Look for Cassel to
dominate again but come out victorious this time.
Kansas City has fallen into a downward slump as of late. Even with strong performances from quarterback Matt Cassel, the Chiefs can't win. Their running game keeps getting shut down and they have no defense to speak of. But at home, the Chiefs are unstoppable. Plus, Cassel is way better than whoever Arizona is starting at quarterback. It's actually a tossup but I'll take Kansas City.
Green Bay Packers (6-3) at Minnesota Vikings (3-6)
This is definitely the game of the week with a bitter rivalry in the NFC North. I'm looking for Green Bay to win on the road here and become leaders in the NFC North.
The Packers have the better record at 6-3, but the Vikings are 3-1 at home. Favre
struggled in a loss to Chicago last week, but he'll come to play against his former
team on Sunday. Sidney Rice will play, and if he's truly healthy he'll be a big boost
to the Viking offense. Rice's presence will also open things up for Peterson and
receiver Percy Harvin.
Do I even have to say it? Packers > Vikings = Rodgers > Favre. Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers has more than proved himself this season, while Vikes quarterback Brett Favre is probably thinking about his retirement plans (for the final time) as I write this. Packers win.
Houston Texans (4-5) at New York Jets (7-2)
Although the Jets have been playing poorly lately, they've found a way to win and have an impressive record. I'm predicting they're going to stay on a roll and beat the Texans at home in a close game.
Houston is struggling big-time. They've dropped three straight close games and are
now 4-5. The Jets are 7-2 and have looked solid week-to-week. I'll take New York at
home in week eleven.
The Jets are sitting at 7-2 tied with division rival New England Patriots. On the other side, Houston has been playing like they forgot how to win. They lose all the close ones and can't seem to finish a full game. Jets should be able to pull out the win after their big victories in the past two weeks.
Oakland Raiders (5-4) at Pittsburgh Steelers (6-3)
The Raiders seem to be the strongest team in the AFC—too bad that doesn't really mean much. It's also extremely difficult to beat the Steelers when they're playing on their home field. If Oakland could pull of the upset it could really make a statement, but I'm going to have to go with the Steelers on this one.
Big Ben has played well in his return and Pittsburgh is 6-3. I'll take the Steelers over
the 5-4 Raiders.
As surprisingly good as the Raiders have looked this year, the Steelers are looking for blood after losing an intense game to the Patriots last Sunday. Pats quarterback Tom Brady threw three touchdowns and steamrolled over Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh's defense stifles the Raiders and Jason Campbell—Steelers win on Sunday.
Baltimore Ravens (6-3) at Carolina Panthers (1-8)
Look for the Ravens to stomp all over the Panthers. Enough said.
This one's easy. Baltimore is 6-3 and playing well although they fell to Atlanta last
week. The Panthers are 1-8 and playing brutal football. I could probably step in at
quarterback for Carolina and do a better job than Jimmy Clausen or Matt Moore.
Baltimore should easily beat a 1-8 Carolina team. Carolina can't get their offense going and the Ravens defense will keep them in check for another week.
Cleveland Browns (3-6) at Jacksonville Jaguars (5-4)
Both teams have been playing well of late. But I'm going with the upset here and picking Cleveland on the road in a well-fought close game.
Both of these teams are playing well as of late, but the Jags have more wins to show
for it. Jacksonville just beat the Texans and will take care of the Browns who are 1-3
on the road.
Neither team really has the edge here. Both the Jaguars and the Browns have offensive weapons. Cleveland rookie quarterback Colt McCoy showed that he's got skill and talent and their running back Peyton Hillis has been running all over his opponents. But Jags quarterback David Garrard has experience, which McCoy is lacking. Both teams played wild games last week, with Cleveland losing in OT and the Jags barely winning at the last moment. It's a hard one, but I'll take Cleveland to come out on top.
Atlanta Falcons (7-2) at St. Louis Rams (4-5)
At 7-2, the Falcons have the best record in the NFC and although the Rams are a much improved team. I feel that Atlanta will stay on a roll and take the win.
Atlanta is the best team in the NFC, sitting at 7-2 and coming off big wins over
Baltimore and Tampa Bay. They're playing the 4-5 Rams in week eleven. I'll take
Matt Ryan and the Falcons against St. Louis.
The Rams have shown this year that they have the potential to be a great team. But they won't beat the Falcons. With quarterback Matt Ryan and wide receiver Roddy White leading Atlanta down field, the Rams don't stand a chance.
Seattle Seahawks (5-4) at New Orleans Saints (6-3)
The Seahawks struggled on the road all year and I feel that defending Superbowl Champions will come up big against Seattle. This one could be a blow out.
New Orleans is coming off their bye week but showed no mercy in a 34-3 thrashing
of Carolina in week nine. The Seahawks are playing well at 5-4 but they're no match
for the defending champs. Saints roll at home.
New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees has thrown for over 2,500 yards and 18 touchdowns this season. Seahawks quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has thrown for only seven touchdowns, less than half of Brees' touchdowns. Add in there Hasselbeck's broken wrist and you have a recipe for disaster. The Saints win big.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (6-3) at San Francisco 49ers (3-6)
Although San Francisco is only 3-6, they've won two in a row and I feel that they will win at home this week against a much improved Tampa Bay squad.
The Bucs are 6-3 and are playing great football. They just beat the Panthers 31-16
thanks to Freeman's 241 yards and two touchdowns. LaGarrette Blount ran for 91
yards and a score and is establishing himself as a #1 back. Tampa Bay beats the 3-6
49ers on Sunday.
The 49ers are one of those teams that have all the potential and the talent in the world, but can't seem to get it done. Tampa Bay, on the other hand, is a dark horse in the NFC. Led by quarterback Josh Freeman, the Bucs will be able to beat the 49ers on Sunday.
Indianapolis Colts (6-3) at New England Patriots (7-2)
This should be another great NFL contest featuring arguably the two best quarterbacks in the league. I feel that Indianapolis needs this one more than New England and will beat them on the road this week in what could be an AFC championship match-up.
Rivalry renewed? The Colts and the Pats are atop the league once again and this
should be a great match-up. Can't go wrong with Peyton Manning, so I'll take Indy on the road.
New England is the best team in the league, no doubt about it. Brady might be injured but it seems like him sitting out of practice has actually been helping the team, which was showcased in his demolishing of the Steelers last week. The Patriots have some other injuries—but so do the Colts. If they can work past the injuries, Pats should be able to continue their winning ways.
New York Giants (6-3) at Philadelphia Eagles (6-3)
Eagles are coming off of their biggest game of the year while the Giants had their worst performance last week. This one is a toss-up for me but I'll take Philadelphia at home with another stellar performance from Michael Vick.
Michael Vick is a cheat code.
The Giants' offensive line is looking a little worn down, with many of their offensive tackles missing practice due to injuries this week. After seeing Eagles quarterback Michael Vick take on the Redskins last week, I'm confident in saying that he's looking a lot better than Giants' quarterback Eli Manning. After all, the G-Men have depended on their defense to win them games. Philly wins a close one.
Monday, Oct. 11
Denver Broncos (3-6) at San Diego Chargers (4-5)
Two high powered offenses square off in this AFC West battle. Look for a really high scoring with the Chargers prevailing in a close one.
San Diego is coming off a week ten bye and a 29-23 victory over Houston in week
nine. The Broncos put up 49 last week, but I don't think they'll find that kind of
success this week. Phillip Rivers is performing at an MVP level as of late. San Diego
The Chargers are pretty good at home and that's exactly where this game is being played. San Diego is also coming off of a bye week, in which they've gotten in practice and some rest. Adding to this, the Broncos' defense sucks and the Chargers definitely have enough offensive weapons to beat Denver. Chargers win at home.
Melissa Haniff. Melissa loves music, One Tree Hill, traveling and experiencing new cultures. She is also a diehard Patriots, Red Wings, Pistons and University of Michigan fan...Go Blue! More »
Eli Schwadron. Eli (@eschwad) is a chill guy who likes to play basketball, watch TV and eat. More »
Blake Morgan-Gamber. Blake Morgan-Gamber is a rare specimen with two last names; she woos women and men alike with her fanciful features writing and sumptuous sports editing. But do not be lulled by this siren, though BMG is a creature of beauty, there's many amazing talents inside ... More »