Jets @ Bills – Bills
Bills are a complete football team and at home. This is their chance to prove themselves against a rival opponent. The Jets have issues on defense, their best side of the ball, and their offense is inconsistent. Rex Ryan has more fight than his players do.
Seahawks @ Cowboys – Cowboys
The Cowboys need to bounce back, and I expect them to at home. They are a talented team and should wake up from their Dream Team nightmare. The Seahawks are a mediocre team with question marks at quarterback, although they do have a good run defense. I just like Dallas and their passing game in this matchup, and don’t think Seattle will score much on Rob Ryan and company.
Falcons @ Colts – Falcons
The Falcons have rediscovered themselves, and Julio Jones is back in the mix. They face a beaten down Colts team that has nothing going for them. Yes, they are hosting this game, but the Falcons are coming off a bye and love playing in domes. I jsut hope the Colts have some fight left.
Dolphins @ Chiefs – Chiefs
The Dolphins are playing better than their record would say. They have a mediocre offense with a decent defense, but Arrowhead Stadium is a tough place to play and win (ask the Chargers). The Chiefs have won 4 in a row and are hitting their stride offensively, especially with rookie Jonathan Baldwin adding to their offense. Their defense is a tough one, led by Derrick Johnson and Brandon Flowers.
Buccaneers @ Saints – Saints
Tampa Bay won the first meeting a couple weeks ago at home. They are coming off a bye, but LeGarrette Blount is their only option at running back and he’s coming off a sprained knee injury. They tend to fall behind and rely on the inconsistent Josh Freeman. The Saints have hit a valley since then, but they are returning to the Superdome where they rarely lose, especially after an embarrassing loss to the Rams.
49ers @ Redskins – 49ers
The Redskins are injury riddled. They are a tough bunch, but have lost any momentum they had previously built. They got shut out last week and appear to be average at best on both sides of the ball. San Francisco is the surprise team in the NFL, and Harbaugh off a bye and a big win over the Lions should be motivation enough to get them another victory in D.C. Whether you trust Alex Smith or not, their run game is powerful and their defense is rolling on all cylinders with that monster linebacking core.
Browns @ Texans – Texans
The Browns are rebuilding, although they pulled off a few wins early on. They just don’t seem to be at the point of competing with the better teams in the league, and they don’t put enough points on the board. The Texans are the team I trust the most right now in the AFC. They keep winning football games without their stud Andre Johnson. Wade Phillips shows why he is an elite defensive coordinator. The running game is dynamic between Arian Foster and Ben Tate, and they use both tight ends well.
Bengals @ Titans – Bengals
2 of the better defenses in football, but the Titans have been struggling in multiple ways. You would think Chris Johnson will get on track sometime soon, but the Bengals have the #1 defense in all of football. I like their recipe on offense and they can score points to win week in and week out.
Broncos @ Raiders – Raiders
I think the Broncos will alter their offense to the strengths of Tim Tebow, and he might be successful this weekend. On the other hand, the Raiders are a different football team and tied for the AFC West lead. I like their opportunistic defense and their strong #2 ranked running game. They will be without Darren McFadden, but Michael Bush is more than viable and Taiwan Jones is a playmaker in the making. All Carson Palmer has to do is be a game manager, anything more is cherry on top against a suspect defense in the Black Hole.
Giants @ Patriots – Patriots
I wouldn’t want to play this team after they lose, and Tom Brady should have a field day against an overrated pass defense. But he needs his defense to slow down Eli Manning’s roll. The Giants are playing well on offense right now, but will be without Hakeem Nicks and Ahmad Bradshaw. I believe the Giants have one of the elite defensive lines in the league, but the 2 tight ends (Hernandez and Gronkowski) will slow them down and move the chains.
Rams @ Cardinals – Rams
Let’s see, the Cardinals had an impressive first half last week against the Ravens, but it was a tale of 2 halves.Coach Wisenhunt came from Pittsburgh and wanted that game, and his team fought hard for him. But it is what it is, the Cardinals are a struggling football team that won’t have their starting quarterback for this game. The Rams are coming off their first victory of the season and a good one at that. They beat the Saints with a group defensive effort, and with the legs of Stephen Jackson. I expect that to continue this week.
Packers @ Chargers – Packers
Green Bay is undefeated and their defense is better than they have been playing, although they are still an opportunistic defense. They get the job done when they need too, and they are coming off of a bye as the class of the NFL. The Chargers have the talent to compete and win this game, but they are too inconsistent for my liking to even think about picking them here.
Ravens @ Steelers – Steelers
The Ravens got their vengeance from last year in week 1, but I’ve always though the Steelers were better and I expect them to win this one at home. Usually the games in Baltimore are lower scoring/defensive battles, but when it comes to Pittsburgh the games are in the 20s. I like the roll Big Ben is on and he has the wideouts to exploit the Raven’s pass defense. The Steelers will be missing a few linebackers, but the scheme is arguably what makes their players. If Flacco can keep them honest, they have a shot at sweeping their arch-rivals. My money’s on Big Ben and Mike Tomlin.
Bears @ Eagles – Eagles
The Bears are a tough football team. They aren’t pretty but they know how to compete and can pull off some wins they probably shouldn’t. The Eagles had a rough start but they look like the team they were “hyped up” to be. The offense is #1 in the NFL and they put points on the scoreboard whether they have turnovers or not. I like their chances better if they minimize the turnovers, and that defense is coming together. The Bears are a one-man show with the underpaid back named Matt Forte, but that won’t be enough to rely on for victories from here on out.