It's week six of the NFL. Lets run through the games and pick out who is going to win and who is going to lose.
Colts @ Texans - COLTS WIN
In Thursday Night Football with the shortened week of preparation it's hard to go against the home team however, in this instantly I feel the shortened week will hurt the Texans even more than the Colts.
As was broken down in the TNF Preview the Texans rely heavily on Arian Foster and the rushing attacking in order to put together any sort of offense. Foster is already on record trashing TNF and I worry that the Texans running back's body won't be ready for the rigours of an NFL game.
It will be close but the Colts and Andrew Luck should edge it
Patriots @ Bills - BILLS WIN
Tom Brady and the Patriots silenced the doubters with a comfortable win against the Bengals on Monday but I'm not confident enough in the New England roster to back them to win on the road against the Bills.
Buffalo's run defense will shut the Patriots rushing attack down whilst Kyle Orton will get the ball into the hands of playmaking rookie wide receiver enough to move the chains frequently and often. Couple this with the buoyant atmosphere that will likely exist thanks to the Bills ownership being sorted out and I predicting that the Patriots will come back down to earth with a whimper.
Steelers @ Browns - BROWNS WIN
The Steelers are probably the most wildly inconsistent team in the NFL today. Not just from game to game but from quarter to quarter. Nothing exhibits this better than the week 1 match against between the Steelers and the Browns. The Steelers raced ahead to a massive lead only to completely stall and end up winning with a last minute field goal.
The Browns meanwhile are one of the most exciting teams in the NFL i.e. every match they play is exceedingly close. Since we have no idea what to expect from the Steelers and the Browns are at home Cleveland should have enough to narrowly win.
Broncos @ Jets - BRONCOS WIN
Peyton Manning is just five touchdowns short of equaling Favre's all time high total of 508 passing touchdowns. Were this game tacking place at Mile High Stadium it would not be out of the realms of possibility for Peyton to match or better this total in a single game. At home in front of their own fans though you'd think the Jets will keep things to within a couple of scores. This one is still going to be a blowout though.
Packers @ Dolphins - PACKERS WIN
The Dolphins may be coming off a bye week but Green Bay have also had an extra few days preparation. Couple this with the fact that Green Bay are in form and have better players then I've got to back the Packers for the win
Ravens @ Buccaneers - BUCCANEERS WIN
Since the disastrous blowout against the Falcons a couple of weeks back Tampa Bay have rallied to show they are a competitive NFL outfit beating the Steelers late on and taking the Saints into overtime on the road. The Ravens meanwhile are coming off their second road game in as many week. I'm hoping that the Bucs can continue their return to NFL relevance by winning at home for the first time this season.
Panthers @ Bengals - BENGALS WIN
After getting destroyed by the Patriots last week the Bengals have a point to prove. The Cincinnati roster is too talented to get beaten 17-43 by the Patriots. At home I'm expecting to see a reaction from the Bengals against a Panthers team that lacks quality in key places.
Lions @ Vikings - VIKINGS WIN
This is probably the hardest game to call this week. I'm on record predicting big things for the Lions this season but injuries are taking their toll on the Detroit outfit. The big loss of course is Calvin Johnson who is unlikely to be playing and if he does play he isn't going to be fully fit.
On top of this the Vikings have had extra time to prepare for this game and should have Teddy Bridgewater fit again. Given this and the fact that they are playing at home the Vikings should just edge it.
Jaguars @ Titans - JAGUARS WIN
Not every match can be a classic sadly and so we turn to the runts of the AFC South the Jaguars and the Titans. Blake Bortles is improving game to game and the Jaguars defense has shown glimpses of being something decent. Given that it looks like Jake Locker is going to be out I'm going to tip the Jaguars to break their duck here against the Titans. It's not a confident shout though.
Chargers @ Raiders - CHARGERS WIN
I've gone on record predicting that the Raiders won't win a single game this year and I'm sticking to my prediction by giving the Chargers the win here. The Raiders may have a new coach and be coming off a bye week but Vince Lombardi couldn't motive the crew of rookies and overpaid veterans on the Oakland roster.
Rivers' form this season has put him in early contention for a MVP shout and you can expect to see the veteran QB enhance those claims by dissecting the Raiders secondary. The most interesting thing to come out of this game will be to see if running back Branden Oliver can repeat his performance against the Jets.
Cowboys @ Seahawks - SEAHAWKS WIN
At least Tony Romo got lots of practice using a silent count at home to the Texans last weekend because Century Link Field is going to be loud. The Cowboys should be competitive here but they aren't going to win it. The Seahawks defense and running game should prove much too much for the
Perhaps the most interesting thing to watch in this game will be to see if the Cowboys can have any success with deep passes. Washington got a couple of big plays off against the Seahawks last weekend as the Legion of Boom struggled to deal with Desean Jackson's pace. If Romo and Dallas can do something similar this week then we might just have found a chink in the armor of the World Champions
Bears @ Falcons - FALCONS WIN
At home the Falcons are a completely different proposition to the side that was beaten on the road in Minnesota. Matt Ryan should get the ball into the hands of Julio Jones early and often. This will be enough to overcome a Bears side that lacks the ruthlessness to win games like this.
Washington @ Cardinals - WASHINGTON WIN
Injuries are catching up with Bruce Arians and the Cardinals. Right now it seems like they are going to have play fourth round rookie Logan Thomas at QB. Given a season or two the strong armed Logan Thomas could be the just the sort of QB that Head Coach Bruce Arians likes right now though he is a liability.
The Washington defense then should be able to get after Thomas and make him struggle. If they manage to do this then Kirk Cousins should have enough about him to move the chains on offense.
Giants @ Eagles - GIANTS WIN
The Eagles have been getting wins by picking up touchdowns on special teams and defense. These strengths have compensated for an offense that has been severely weakened by injuries to the offensive line but this can't continue indefinitely.
Against the Giants this run should come to an end. After a tough few weeks the Giants have begun to pick up the new offensive system and as a result are looking dangerous. They have even got first round draft pick Odell Beckham Jnr back. The Giants should win this one to blow the NFC East wide open.
49ers @ Rams - 49ERS WIN
Despite the persistent rumors that Head Coach Jim Harbough isn't going to be around in the long term the 49ers have steadied the ship in recent weeks win wins over the Chiefs and the Eagles. On the road against the Rams in St Louis we can expect San Fransisco to do the same again. It is going to be closer than most people think however, as the Rams front seven should make Frank Gore work hard to move the chains.
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