Predicting Sunday’s Games

packers vs vikings 2018
Photo courtesy: Jeff Hanisch/USA Today Sports

Early games

49ers vs Buccaneers

Not too much seems appealing about this game but it will be interesting to see if Jameis Winston can pull it together at all now that he’ll get a chance to start again. Tampa Bay should win this with it being a home game and with them have a significantly better offense.

Pick: Buccaneers

Patriots vs Jets

The Jets are at home in this one, but the Patriots are the much better team. The Jets will be without Sam Darnold in this one, but with the way he’s turned the ball over this season, who’s playing quarterback for the Jets probably won’t matter too much.

Pick: Patriots

Giants vs Eagles

Since Odell Beckham said the Giants would win out they’ve been 2-0, but let’s keep those wins in perspective. One was against the 49ers and the other came against the Buccaneers and they were both narrow wins. The Eagles on the other hand are coming off of the worst loss a defending Super Bowl champion has ever suffered. If the Eagles can’t get it together this week then it’ll likely just not happen this season. I think after being embarrassed last week and with them knowing their season could be on the line, they’ll show up and play to their potential.

Pick: Eagles

Raiders vs Ravens

Lamar Jackson will be getting another start for Baltimore and last week in his first career start he was able to run the ball pretty well. For him to be sustainable in this league he will need to show he can pass the ball more consistently, but with the way the Raiders season has gone, Baltimore should be able to get a win with a limited passing game, especially with this being a big game for them to get with their record sitting at 5-5 right now.

Pick: Ravens

Jaguars vs Bills

This is not a game that I would recommend watching, but just in case you feel inclined I’ll talk about it. Josh Allen will be back for Buffalo, which is a good thing even though he’s not very good, but it’s a good thing because their offense has been at its best this season when he’s in the game. Last week the Jaguars had a real chance to gain some momentum, but they let their lead against the Steelers slip through their fingers. It’s hard to imagine that Jacksonville will go on the road and put it together.

Pick: Bills

Seahawks vs Panthers

This is the most important game in the early slate of games when it comes to the playoff race. Both teams are right in the thick of the NFC Wild Card race and a win here would go a long way in trying to make the playoffs. K.J. Wright is still out for Seattle and that will have a huge impact against one of the better rushing teams in the league. I could see this game going either way, but with the injury to Wright and with it being a home game for Carolina, I’m going to side with them.

Pick: Panthers

Browns vs Bengals

The Bengals haven’t been playing that well going into the Hue Jackson Bowl. It’ll be important for Cincinnati to get that offense going early with A.J. Green still listed as doubtful, because when they’ve got behind without him it’s been hard for them to pass their way back into games. They will need to establish Joe Mixon early in this game to try and get more of a running game going than they’ve had most of this season. Them being at home helps a lot in this game because it’s a game they really need to get.

Pick: Bengals

Late games

Cardinals vs Chargers

Arizona is coming off of a brutal loss to the Raiders and now having to go on the road with the struggles of Josh Rosen up to this point will be a real challenge, especially since the Chargers are coming off of a bad loss against the Broncos and they’ll want to bounce back to help their playoff positioning. I think the Chargers will get the job done here by a sizable margin.

Pick: Chargers

Dolphins vs Colts

Quietly the Colts have been playing really well and the key to that has been their offensive line protecting Andrew Luck. Ryan Tannehill will be back for Miami, which will be a very welcome sight for the Miami offense, but with the way the Colts are playing right now I can’t see them losing at home to an average Dolphins team.

Pick: Colts

Steelers vs Broncos

Pittsburgh was lucky to come back and win last week against Jacksonville, but it’s the NFL and you’ll take any win you can get. They have a great chance to get their 7th straight win with their trip to Denver. The Broncos can still get after the quarterback, which could definitely keep them in the game, but Denver struggles to defend the run, which is something Pittsburgh can take advantage of. Pittsburgh should simply have too much offense for Denver.

Pick: Steelers

Sunday Night Football

Packers vs Vikings

It’s now or never for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. They’ve lost three out of their last five and if they don’t get on some kind of hot streak it’ll be nearly impossible for them to make the playoffs and going to Minnesota is not the most ideal situation, but when you have Aaron Rodgers you have a chance. The Vikings have also been underwhelming this season and that’s perhaps even more surprising because they have a better roster than the Packers. The key to this game will be quarterback play because the Packers will likely need Rodgers to be elite for them to win, but Kirk Cousins has also been underwhelming this season at times and he’s coming off of a very shaky game against the Bears last Sunday Night. If he plays up to his capabilities the Vikings should be able to win because they’re at home and the Vikings have a much better roster.

Pick: Vikings

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