Much better week for my predictions in Week 15 getting 12 out of 16 NFL results correct,
Ahead of the penultimate week in the regular season we are left with 12 teams fighting it our for the final six playoff places, this week could make or break a lot of teams seasons.
As always the teams I have picked to come out of week 15 victorious are in bold. Please comment with your own predictions as well as letting me know what you think of mine.
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San Diego Chargers @ Oakland Raiders
Neither of these teams can get a playoff spot but they can still play for their pride. The Chargers need to go back to the drawing board next season after they have failed in all aspects this season, despite having strength and depth in their squad they really haven't played well.
A strong performance against the Dolphins last time out should give them confidence going into the close season but with the Raiders up this week and the Broncos up next week I don't see them winning again this season.
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The Raiders have been unlucky, often playing far better than their results show, a bit of naivety from some players is the main reason for this, but I expect better things next season. They will sign off with a win at their final home game of the year.
Washington Redskins @ Philadelphia Eagles
This should be a close and exciting game, both teams are very evenly matched and both have realistic playoff hopes.
I have picked a Redskins win here as I feel they are far more cut-throat and efficient in the red zone than the Eagles, the Redskins rarely leave the oppositions red zone without points and this week will be no different.
The Eagles have a very well-balanced offense but they lack in all areas of the defense, they consistently fail to make tackles that could turn the tide of the game. Against the Cardinals they missed 17 tackles, this is not acceptable for an NFL side and, for this reason, I don't think they will have enough to disrupt Kirk Cousins.
Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons
The Panthers continue to brush aside all teams who come before them and the Falcons will be no different.
The Falcons are fortunate to still be in with a playoff shot after this season has seen them fall well below their usually high standards. They have failed to show any consistency and their passing games has been well below average, a win against the Jags has given them a boost but it wont be enough to get anything from the Panthers.
Dallas Cowboys @ Buffalo Bills
This has been a season to forget for the Cowboys, it all looked good for them with back to back wins against the Giants and then the Eagles in the first two weeks of the season but, since then, they have only won two games out of 12.
That is not good enough for a team of the Cowboys' stature, but I don't see them winning again before the season is up. It has been a better season for the Bills but they also won't be making a playoff appearance. They can take confidence from this season and push on from here. I expect them to get the win here, but it will be a close scoring affair.
San Francisco 49ers @ Detroit Lions
Not much to say about these two sides, neither have lit up their respective divisions and neither will progress to the playoffs. The 49ers have shown very little quality and the Lions have the far superior side so this should be a win for them but don't watch it expecting a thriller.
Cleveland Browns @ Kansas City Chiefs
No hope for the Browns in this one even after their valiant, if short, stand against the Seahawks last week. The Browns have been the most disappointing team in the whole of the NFL for me this season, they have shown a lack of direction and discipline which has been perfectly represented in Manziel's performances.
On the flip side, the Chiefs have beaten all before them and they don't show signs of stopping. I fully expect the Chiefs defense to limit the Browns to very few scoring opportunities whilst the offense cause the Browns back-line all sorts of trouble.
Indianapolis Colts @ Miami Dolphins
This is another close game but the fact the Colts have a lot more to play for over the Dolphins has made me side with them.
They also have a stronger and more effective team, man for man they should have the beating of the Dolphins players. Despite their extra quality, the Colts defense will have to be wary of the Dolphins rushing game.
Their rushing games has caused some teams trouble since they brought in Dan Campbell to replace Joe Philbin as head coach.
New York Giants @ Minnesota Vikings
On paper, the Giants have the better side but you can't argue with the Vikings' record and their performances. Despite suffering some fairly heavy defeats they have continued to bounce back and a win here could take them to
The Giants have been a mixed bag this year, Manning has shown his quality at moments this season but without Odell Beckham the Giants could quite easily be in the Cowboys' position. With Odell Beckham banned for this game, the Giants will suffer even more offensively and the Vikings will win at a canter.
Jacksonville Jaguars @ New Orleans Saints
The Jaguars should have won last week but some poor decision-making and execution by Bortles meant they missed two touchdown opportunities and threw a goal line interception, these poor decisions costs the Jags more than 10 points.
I expect him to be back to his best this week against a defense nowhere near as strong as the Falcons one he faced last weekend.
The Saints will need to come out of the traps firing this week and rely on Bortles having an off day, neither of which is likely.
New England Patriots @ New York Jets
This is probably the most difficult game the Patriots have played all season so far, the Jets may not be playing the best football but they have hit form at the right time and they continue to grind out results.
The Patriots defense is not as solid as it could be which gives the Jets a fantastic chance with Ryan Fitzpatrick orchestrating the Jets offense. The Patriots suffered two more injuries to their offense which leaves them increasingly thin on the ground plus Gronkowski still isn't fully fit. For these reasons, I have had to go with a Jets win.
Chicago Bears @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
I am going for a Buccaneers win in this week, this is their last home game of the year and the last game I can see them winning with a trip to Carolina in the final week.
The Buccaneers have impressed me this season, especially their rushing game which should be the undoing of the Bears defense this week. If they strengthen their passing game they could be a real playoff threat next season.
To get anything from this game the Bears will have to concentrate a lot more than they have in other games this year, they have allowed far too many teams a chance to get over the line when they should be seeing a game out. I see nothing but a Buccaneers win.
Houston Texans @ Tennessee Titans
The Texans are right in the mix for a playoff spot thanks to the mess that is the AFC South this season and a win against division rivals Tennessee this week will secure them that place.
I am amazed the Titans have managed three wins so far this season considering how unorganized and fragile they have looked, against the Patriots, however, they showed glimpses of quality that should give their fans a glimmer of hope for next season. This should be a routine win for the Texans.
Green Bay Packers @ Arizona Cardinals
This was probably the hardest game of the lot this week to pick a winner from. The Cardinals have stayed consistent all season long whilst the Packers have come back strong in the last few games after suffering a few poor results.
Both lead their respective divisions, but the Cardinals have been more impressive in my opinion, they have the stronger offense and their variation in plays takes them ahead of the Packers in this match up for me.
Of course, you can never write off the Packers with Aaron Rodgers at the helm but the Cardinals offense should pose him a lot of problems whilst Cardinals QB Carson Palmer should get enough protection to run the game.
St Louis Rams @ Seattle Seahawks
The Seahawks will have the beating of the Rams in every area this week. They have blown away various teams in the last few weeks with great efficiency and style, its hard to see the Rams causing them any real trouble this week.
The Rams' main threat will be their rushing game but with a defense as tight and strong as the Seahawks it's going result in very few scoring opportunities.
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens
A fantastic win for the Steelers against the Broncos has given them much-needed momentum for the playoffs.
They finally look like the team many thought would take the AFC North by storm, but they have been overshadowed by an ever impressive Bengals side. This will not be a repeat of the Ravens' victory over the Steelers in week four which needed overtime to find a winner, but I do expect to be a very good game - the Steelers need to make a statement to all the other playoff teams.
This time around, the division game should be a comfortable Steelers win with most of the Ravens who played that day now out injured.
Cincinnati Bengals @ Denver Broncos
Home field advantage, stronger defense and a better back up QB are the only things that split these sides in this match up for me.
Osweiler has illustrated fantastic maturity since coming in for the injured Manning which will be key in this heavyweight battle, he has stayed strong despite players faltering around him.
On the flip side, AJ McCarron played well last week but his inexperience will be clear to see against an astute and high pressure defense this week. The Bengals will need Dalton back for the playoff's to have a shot at going all way the way.
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