Its week 13 of one of the strangest NFL seasons in recent memory, and I’m going to take a look at this week’s slate of games, and give my completely unprofessional, slightly skewed, but usually close to something resembling coherent predictions for the ten games I’m most looking forward to. The 2010 NFL season has defiantly been an up and down one, with the exception of a few teams, the Falcons and Saints in the NFC, and the Patriots, Jets, and Steelers in the AFC there haven’t really been any standout dominate teams this year, which has made predicting week to week winners very difficult. Even the 5 teams I consider the current crop of top Super Bowl contenders have laid a few eggs, so in short, there is no clear best team in the NFL this year, and therefore predicting winners is very hard, but I’ll try my level best , so with that said, onward to the picks:
Thursday, December 2
Houston Texans @ Philadelphia Eagles:
This one should be a good game; the Eagles are coming off of a tough road loss to a Bears team that is all of the sudden very good, and the Texans are riding the emotion of their first shutout win since 2004 and the fight, if you can call one man whuppin another man’s butt a fight, between Andre Johnson and Cortland Finnegan. I think the Texans can keep it close for most of the game, but in the end Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy will prove too much for a weak Houston Defense.
Projection: Eagles 38 – Texans 27
Sunday, December 5
New Orleans Saints @ Cincinnati Bengals:
The Saints have gotten on a roll recently and are playing very good football, getting Reggie Bush back is only going to make them a better team for the playoff push, and Chris Ivory has been the truth the last few weeks. The Bengals are back to being the Bungles and playing like they are gunning for the number one spot, the number one draft spot that is.
Projection: Saints 34 – Bengals 17
Denver Broncos @ Kansas City Chiefs:
Kyle Orton is one of the most underrated Quarterbacks in the NFL, and Brandon Lloyd has finally started living up to all of his talent, but the Chiefs running game powered by Jamaal Charles will prove to be too much at home for a Broncos team that is reeling.
Projection: Chiefs 31 – Broncos 17
Chicago Bears @ Detroit Lions:
The Lions need to learn to finish a game, once they do, look out, they will be a very good team. Unfortunately, they won’t learn that lesson this week, and the Bears, who all of the sudden realized to win they need to run the ball, will win a close game on the road.
Projection: Bears 28 – Lions 24
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Tennessee Titans:
Vince Young is immature, and Jeff Fisher is hard headed. I’m not a Titans fan, but if I were, I would be rooting for both of them to go, as it stands, Bud Adams will try to make them work together, they won’t, and Jeff Fisher will get leave the team in the off season, and Jon Gruden will take over next year. Just a thought. As far as the game goes, I love Chris Johnson, but with no threat of a real passing game, the Jags will be able to stack the box and shut down the one good thing the Titans have going for them.
Projection: Jaguars 31 – Titans 17
Washington Redskins @ New York Giants:
This is my official upset special of the week. The Skins should have won last week, but the Vikings were playing hard for their new coach. The Giants are a good team, but I think the Skins get the best of them this week with McNabb leading a late fourth quarter drive for a Graham Gano game winning field goal in the New Meadowlands Stadium.
Projection: Redskins 24 – Giants 21
Oakland Raiders @ San Diego Chargers:
The Chargers and Raiders are always a good game, and the Chargers are beginning their typical late season playoff push, something Norv Turner’s Chargers have become known for. The Raiders started the season as a dark horse candidate for most improved team, but have fizzled lately. The Raiders will play the Chargers hard with McFadden leading the way, but the Chargers will find a way to win a tightly contested game at home.
Projection: Chargers 23 – Raiders 21
Atlanta Falcons @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
The Falcons are going to the Super Bowl. They have a quarterback that never believes he is out of a game, and a running back that is punishing people, with a wide receiver that is a dark horse MVP candidate. Oh yeah, there’s also their hall of fame tight end. And the defense is playing great football, all around, in my opinion, the best team in football. The Bucs are also playing great. The NFC south is playing some great football this year, other than the Panthers that is. This game will be another tightly fought contest between two teams that have played some great football games over the last few years, but I see Matty Ice leading the Falcons on a late scoring drive to win the game.
Projection: Falcons 31 – Buccaneers 28
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Baltimore Ravens:
This is one of those games that you know is going to be good. These two teams seem to genuinely dislike each other. They try to knock each other’s heads off every time they play. If this game were in the Steel City, then I would see the Steelers pulling it off, but since its in Baltimore, the Ravens win on a Field Goal late.
Projection: Ravens 17 – Steelers 14
Monday, December 6
New York Jets @ New England Patriots:
This is the battle for the AFC East. I like Sanchez, but can we please give up on the MVP talk for now? He’s a good quarterback, and will probably be a great one someday soon, but he is not an MVP candidate, yet. The Jets Defense will give the Pats fits, but the new Joe Cool, Tom Brady, will dink and dunk em to death. A late touchdown to Rob Gronkowski seals the victory, and sole possession of the AFC east lead for the Patriots.
Projection: Patriots 24 – Jets 17