Last Week: 9-7
Season Overall: 22-10
In the NFL, the more things change, it seems like the more things remain the same. Like death and taxes, some things are just a sure, fact of life. Belichick could beat the Dolphins at home with Matt Saracen (my Friday Night Lights watchers will get it).
The Broncos defense is dominant. The Redskins stink, and the Browns are the Browns. While these facts remain, a lot has changed. The Packers offense has looked quite mediocre, starting with Aaron Rodgers, who isn’t playing up to the high bar, he set for himself. The Packers offense hasn’t been crisp or dominant since arguably October of last season. One or two bad outings is just a slump, but it’s becoming a trend.
LET ME SAY THIS
What’s happening in Buffalo is a mess. Help me understand this: The defense, coached by Rob Ryan, and led by the genius Rex Ryan, surrenders 37 points, more than 300 yards through the air to Ryan Fitzpatrick, and that leads the Head Coach to fire the offensive coordinator? The offense scored 31 points, and that means an offensive change needs to be made? Let’s be honest, what’s the likelihood that Rex Ryan fires his brother Rob Ryan? Nepotism is a sure fire way to ruin any organization. I’m sure the players took notice of what happened this week in Orchard Park. I would be surprised if Rex made it through this season. Im sorry, the days of Rex Ryan as a Head Coach in the NFL needs to over.
Also, this week, Cam Newton articulated that speaking out on injustice and systemic racism against blacks presents a “lose-lose” situation for him. Cam’s right. He won’t be the nationally beloved, celebrated, big jock that whites adore if he stands (or kneels) with Kaep. Maybe, he’d be disliked. Maybe he won’t be as popular.Maybe Mr. Newton should consider that “losing” is winning, when you’re on the right side. Toughen up, Cameron.
Now that all that’s off my chest….Let’s Pick Games!
Texans at Patriots
Honestly, I’m always wrong picking against New England. Everything in me thinks the Texans should win this game. But, I have to go with the hoodie.
Patriots 24 Texans 17
Ravens at Jaguars
The Ravens weak run on the schedule continues this week with a road trip to sunny Jacksonville. The Jags defense has not been as good as many believed it would be this year. I like Flacco to build off last week, and get the Ravens to 3-0.
Ravens 27 Jaguars 20
Redskins at Giants
As an Eagles fan, I am rooting for the Redskins to win, to go 1-2, and drop the Giants to 2-1. That way, no matter the outcome of the Steelers game, we’d still be in first place. I don’t see it happening. This Redskins defense isn’t very good against the run, (or the pass) which doesn’t bode well for them, considering that they will have to deal with the Giants trio of Beckham, Shepherd and Cruz. I see this game being a shoot out, and in that case, I’ll take Eli.
Giants 31 Redskins 23
Lions at Packers
Whenever a good team hits rock bottom, look for a home game against a hatred divisional rival to wake them up. I think the Packers get right this week, against the Lions. Look for Rodgers and McCarthy to get creative with play calling, and put up a big number against the Lions.
Packers 37 Lions 17
Browns at Dolphins
…Does it really matter?
Dolphins 15 Browns 12
Vikings at Panthers
This is a big game. Without Adrian Peterson in the backfield, this game is squarely on the shoulders of Sam Bradford. Pray for him. Minnesota’s pass protection is pedestrian, and that won’t cut it against this ferocious pass-rush of the Panthers. I think Cam and Kelvin make enough big plays to get the Panthers the win.
Panthers 22 Vikings 13
Broncos at Bengals
This is a tough game to pick. Trevor Simien will have his first road test, against a tough Bengals defense. I love the Broncos defense more. Look for Aqib Talib and Chris Harris to get a couple more interceptions, and Denver to pull out another defensive win.
Broncos 21 Bengals 13
Cardinals at Bills
You’re in a bad relationship. You’ve both cheated, and have been arguing non stop. After one really bad fight, you stop speaking for about a week. You see your boo again, and you miss them. Y’all go to dinner, and that night, earth-shattering, passionate, “making up” ensues. It’s easy to wake up the next morning thinking “maybe we can work this out”, or “maybe they’ve changed”. Two days later, you realize, that was just one moment. Ain’t nothing about that person change, and that was just the last hoorah before you two go your separate ways.
That’s Buffalo this week. They’ll party on Sunday, but it’ll be back to reality really soon.
Bills 32 Cardinals 24
Raiders at Titans
This is the week the Oakland defense shows up. Finally.
Raiders 34 Titans 14
Rams at Buccaneers
If only the Rams could play Seattle every week…
Bucs 28 Rams 19
49ers at Seahawks
Russell Wilson hasn’t played well. But Seattle’s at home, where they don’t lose. I don’t know what to make of San Francisco. They were great defensively against the Rams, and terrible against Carolina. The offense scored points in Carolina, but Gabbert is just not good.
Seahawks 30 Niners 14
Steelers at Eagles
I think this game will be a lot closer than many think. There are no moral victories in the NFL, but I believe the Eagles will leave this game feeling pretty good about themselves. The Eagles don’t have anyone who can cover Antonio Brown. The Eagles can MAYBE neutralize Brown, by getting to Roethlisberger with their talented front 7. I think Pittsburgh will send many zone blitzes for Carson Wentz to deal with, which could spell trouble for the talented rookie. In a tough game, I like the Steelers by a late field goal.
Steelers 20 Eagles 17
Jets at Chiefs
This is a tough game to pick. These teams are both really good, and full of talent. I like the Jets. I don’t like Fitzpatrick, but he has two really good receivers to throw to, and the ageless true 3 down back, Matt Forte.
Jets 27 Chiefs 24
Chargers at Colts
If you love Madden games that go 76-75, then you’ll love this matchup. The Chargers and Colts both have bad defenses, but I think the Chargers will pull this one out, against a desperate home team. The seat just got hotter for Pagano.
Chargers 38 Colts 34
Bears at Cowboys
Da Monsters of the Midway?
Cutler knows how you feel, Bears fans.
Who would schedule the Bears to be on national tv two weeks in a row? Dallas wins this uninspired matchup against Brian Hoyer. Lord, this game will be boring.
Cowboys 27 Bears 14
Falcons at Saints
Ten years ago. This play.
Who are the Falcons? I have no idea. They go and look like a juggernaut against Oakland, while losing at home to Tampa. They start last season 5-0, then become terrible after that. One thing has remained, and that’s the terrible play of their defense. In that dome, on this night, against this offense, I can’t see the Falcons beating Drew Brees and this Saints team.
Saints 37 Falcons 24
While many things in the world continue to change, one thing remains, and that’s NFL football. Although so much hurt, anger and frustration is rampant in this country, try to stop, and enjoy the silly game called football this weekend. Whether you watch for 3 hours, or 10 hours, cherish the escape, because Tuesday morning will be here before you know it.
By: Corey Johnson