Monday night’s game between the Steelers and Bengals reminded me of the infamous MNF ‘Body Bag’ game from 1990, when nine Redskins players left the game with injuries.
That’s not a good thing, either. A really brutal and physical game that left both sides with stars injured and players suspended due to unnecessary hits. With how much has come out about CTE this year, everyone needs to make a concerted effort to make a very physical and dangerous game to be as safe as possible.
Outside of Cincy, the Redskins were getting humiliated by a team that hadn’t managed double digit points in their last three games.
Minnesota tightened their grip on the NFC with a road victory against the surging Falcons (helped by an Eagles loss to the offensively impressive Seattle
Russell Wilsons Seahawks.)
The Titans continue to churn through lesser opponents to remain a paper tiger in the playoff race. If they manage to back their way into the playoffs, they’ll likely lose the first round (unless they get immensely lucky, a la 2016 Houston Texans facing a Raiders team starting a rookie QB.)
The Packers are managing to keep their very slim playoff hopes alive with a win and both Detroit and Atlanta losing. They’re going to need a looooooooot of help to even come close. They hold the tie break over Seattle (and if they win out, will have the break over Carolina) but they’re still at least one game behind both of them. None of it will matter if the Packers drop a very, very, very winnable game in Cleveland. Why does it feel like they could totally flub this up?
After almost three years away from the game, Josh Gordon returns! And… he actually is playing pretty well. If only he had a capable QB throwing to him and not overthrowing him.
The Geno Smith experience is over just as fast as it started in New York. McAdoo is out and Eli is back in. So glad we ruined that streak for literally nothing.
The Panthers continue to be hair pulling-ly frustrating to watch. They have the talent on offense to be great. And their defense is clearly great. But stupid penalties (and missed penalties against the Saints) completely flipped the game against them. They need to play better and smarter if they want to remain in the wildcard race and not give way to teams like the Packers and Falcons.
Who will win the NFC West? The Rams seem to be the favorite but one of their three losses is against the Seahawks in LA. They have the Eagles, Seahawks, Titans and 49ers to wrap up the season. Seahawks have Jaguars, Rams, Cowboys (who will have Zeke back), and Arizona. Schedule and current record favors the Rams, but it’s anyone’s guess who will be in those coveted bye week spots of the NFC playoffs.
First, my prediction record, I went 9-7 last week, adding to my 107-68 record so far, I’m now 116-75 on the year through Week 13.
Now, for statistical predictions:
- Antonio Brown did have another 100 yard game (101 yards in game)
- Jacksonville did have 3+ team sacks (team had 4)
- Kareem Hunt was held under 100 yards again (40 rushing, 23 receiving)
- Adam Thielen did have more receiving yards than Julio Jones (51 vs 24)
- Cousins did throw for more than double Dak Prescott did (251 vs 102)
…and that’s all! A pretty good statistical prediction week.
Now onto Week 14 predictions!
Thursday Night Football, Dec. 7:
New Orleans Saints (9-3) at Atlanta Falcons (7-5)
An NFC South matchup that could shape the 2017 NFC playoffs. The Saints have been rolling behind their two headed monster duo of running backs, potential All Pro Mark Ingram and penciled in Offensive Rookie of the Year Alvin Kamara. After struggling against Minnesota, I see Atlanta continuing to struggle against the Saints as well.
Statistical Prediction: Alvin Kamara has more receiving yards than Julio Jones.
Score Prediction: New Orleans wins, 30-24
Sunday Dec 10, 1 pm E slot:
Oakland Raiders (6-6) at Kansas City Chiefs (6-6)
The game that could decide the AFC West winner. Both of these teams have been wildly inconsistent as the season has gone on, but the hapless Raiders still have a shot at making the playoffs despite a rather slow and uneven start. Kansas City has completely fallen apart after their red hot start, losing six of their last seven games. Raiders have already won one matchup between these teams, so I’ll give Kansas City this chance to steer the ship right.
Statistical Prediction: Derek Carr and Alex Smith combine for 500+ passing yards and 5+ touchdowns
Score Prediction: Kansas City wins, 35-31
Minnesota Vikings (10-2) at Carolina Panthers (8-4)
As the season heats up, so do the matchups, so I’m doing two writeups for this 1 pm E slot. Two teams vying for playoff spots and going in very different directions. The Vikings look like one of the most consistent teams on both sides of the ball, while the Panthers are the most inconsistent team, maybe in the NFL. If Cam can put in a performance like he did against Miami, they can win this. Anything short, they’ll could be sitting on the outside of the playoffs at the end of Week 14.
Statistical Prediction: Cam Newton throws for 250+ yards and rushes for 75+ yards.
Score Prediction: Minnesota wins, 24-21
Indianapolis Colts (3-9) at Buffalo Bills (6-6)
Statistical Prediction: Joe Webb has more scrimmage yards than Nathan Peterman.
Score Prediction: Buffalo wins, 20-17
Dallas Cowboys (6-6) at New York Giants (2-10)
Statistical Prediction: Dak Prescott throws under 200 passing yards and over 50 rushing yards.
Score Prediction: Dallas wins, 23-14
Detroit Lions (6-6) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-8)
Statistical Prediction: Neither quarterback throws over 250+ yards
Score Prediction: Detroit wins, 21-17
San Francisco 49ers (2-10) at Houston Texans (4-8)
Statistical Prediction: Jimmy G throws for 300+ yards and 2+ touchdowns
Score Prediction: San Francisco wins, 24-20
Green Bay Packers (6-6) at Cleveland Browns (0-12)
Statistical Prediction: Hundley continues his road game dominance with 250+ passing yards and 2+ touchdowns.
Score Prediction: Green Bay wins, 23-16
Chicago Bears (3-9) at Cincinnati Bengals (5-7)
Statistical Prediction: Trubisky ruins the Bengals playoffs chances and maybe… Marvin Lewis’ job?
Score Prediction: Chicago wins, 20-17
Sunday Dec. 10, 4 pm E Slot:
Philadelphia Eagles (10-2) at Los Angeles Rams (9-3)
The first two picks of the 2016 draft, squaring off deep in the playoff race for both teams. Both Goff and Wentz have been amazing this year, and each of their respective coaches are to thank for much of that (Sean McVay for Coach of the Year…?) This will be a tight game and a game that I think will come down to who has the ball last. I see Philly taking this one, with the superior defense overall.
Statistical Prediction: Goff and Wentz combine for 500+ yards and 4+ touchdowns
Score Prediction: Philadelphia wins, 30-28
Seattle Seahawks (8-4) at Jacksonville Jaguars (8-4)
Two teams that are built very similarly in two very, very different directions. Russell Wilson is running all over the field, with an absence of offensive help and a decimated defense, whereas Blake Bortles has a lot of help by a good running game and even better defense. They’re home, I’m taking the Jags.
Statistical Prediction: Jacksonville has 4+ team sacks.
Score Prediction: Jacksonville wins, 24-21
Washington Redskins (5-7) at Los Angeles Chargers (6-6)
Statistical Prediction: Kirk Cousins cracks 300 passing yards and 2+ pass touchdowns
Score Prediction: Los Angeles wins, 31-27
New York Jets (5-7) at Denver Broncos (3-9)
Statistical Prediction: Josh McCown slices and dices the No Fly Zone for 400 passing yards. Yeah, I said it.
Score Prediction: New York wins, 30-10
Tennessee Titans (8-4) at Arizona Cardinals (5-7)
Statistical Prediction: Derrick Henry and Demarco Murray combine for 200+ rushing yards.
Score Prediction: Tennessee wins, 24-17
Sunday Night Football, Dec. 10:
Baltimore Ravens (7-5) at Pittsburgh Steelers (10-2)
Another primetime Steelers matchup. I see Ben and the gang easily taking on a vaunted Ravens defense that has difficulty stopping good quarterbacks for four quarters. *Cue Antonio Brown amazing catch in the fourth quarter to set up a Boswell game winning field goal*
Statistical Prediction: Ben goes for 300 pass yards/ Bell goes for 150 total yards/ Brown goes for 100 rec yards
Score Prediction: Pittsburgh win, 23-21
Monday Night Football, Dec. 11:
New England Patriots (10-2) at Miami Dolphins (5-7)
Woo boy. Can we get excited about this? Well, statistically, Brady has struggled in Miami over the years. But I don’t suspect that this Tom Brady, who appears to have been a football master cyborg sent from the future to replace Tom Brady and completely take over the NFL, and then the world.
Statistical Prediction: Dwayne Allen has a TD in replacement of a suspended Rob Gronkowski.
Score Prediction: New England wins, 30-13