Week 7 pickems and breakdowns

Week 6 saw a lot of action, drama, and a continuation of some fun and interesting storylines. The Ravens found themselves at the top of the AFC even with a lengthy IR list, the Bengals are 4-2, the Jags snagged their first win, and more. After last week, I’m currently 66-28 in picking games so far this season. This week has a good amount of fun games with interesting storylines. Will the Lions follow the Jags path and secure their first win? Will the Cards take their first L of the season? Will the Bengals pull off the upset and take the reigns of the AFC North? Now, I’m no Nostradamus, hell I’m not even a dollar store version of a football psychic. That won’t stop me from trying to foretell how things will play out though. According to my record, I even have a 70% chance of getting them right, so take that Nostradamus. Ok without further making a fool of myself, let’s just jump right in.

BRONCOS @ BROWNS

The Browns are favored in this game and I have to assume that it’s solely because they’re playing at home. Not only have they drastically underperformed up to this point in the season, but they’re also facing a long list of injuries. Baker is still 50/50 on whether or not he’s going to play, but even if he does, he’s not nearly 100% and the team is pretty thinned out as it is. The Browns have put up solid numbers on both sides of the ball, but they’re missing a lot of key players on both sides of the ball so everything we’ve known about this team up to this point in the season gets tossed out the window in this one. The only thing I can surely pinpoint for this team is missing a lot of important guys, including your RB tandem and WR duo, and having a battered QB, it looks very bleak for this team no matter who they’re facing. It does play into their favor a little that they’re facing a Broncos team that has been completely mediocre since starting 3-0. They’re defense still sits at 8th in the league and the cards are in their favor since Cleveland is missing most of the important names on their offense. The offense has been pretty rough, but that may not matter since Cleveland is missing a lot of key players on that side also. Cleveland is a deep team and they aren’t going to get blown out, maybe. However, they can’t expect to keep it close or win with more than half their team out or battered with injury.

DEN 23 CLE 13

CHIEFS @ TITANS

Our first interesting and fun game of the week. The Chiefs have been very rough in terms of turnovers and making mistakes. Mahommes already has thrown 2 more INTs this season than he did all of last season. They’ve looked shabby and have turned those risks that turned into rewards the passed few years, into mistakes and wasted opportunities. They’re lucky to have the record they do with how lousy they’ve played. Prior to the season, everyone predicted they’d blow out the rest of the AFC West pretty handedly. Now 6 weeks in, they’re lucky to be fighting Las Vegas for 2nd in the division. The real question will be how Los Angeles responds to their blowout loss to the Ravens. regardless of the struggles, the Chiefs still boast the league’s 2nd best offense. This week, they’re facing off against a team that was struggling to find a rhythm of it’s own. The Titans just played a great game against the Bills. They faced off against the most well-rounded and dangerous team in the league and Henry made their defense into his play things. Their offense sits at 11th overall and they’re the 8th best scoring offense in the league. The Chiefs may have one of the worst rushing defenses in the league, but the Titans don’t generate a lot of pressure and they also don’t force many turnovers. This will be a fun game, but I think Mahommes will out gun Henry and the Titans

KC 31 TEN 27

JETS @ PATRIOTS

This game may actually surprise some people. A lot of people have the Pats winning this one in a blowout. Mac Jones has been playing pretty well, but he’s not a big play QB yet, and Belichick is playing too conservatively with the young QB. They did test a very good Cowboys team last week, but the Cowboys are also at the bottom of the league when it comes to overall defense, even ranking 30th in pass defense. They won’t have that sort of luck this week as the Jets’ weaknesses are not on defense. The team ranks 7th in both total defense and passing defense. They also rank 6th in generating pressure on the opposing QB. The other side of the ball is a totally different story. They are the worst offense in the league and score the least amount of point per game than any other team by far. Wilson started off the season very rough, but has made baby steps of progress every week. It stands to reason that maybe this week, he performs just well enough to secure a win. The Pats may not generate a lot of pressure on opposing QBs, but they are a decent defense that does force turnovers and they’re the 11th best scoring defense in the league. I don’t think the Pats blow out the Jets, but they will pull out a win.

NE 20 NYJ 17

BENGALS @ RAVENS

This is going to be a very interesting game to watch. The Bengals have surprised so many and find themselves sitting at a respectable 4-2 and 2nd in the AFC North behind their opponent this week, the Ravens. Jamar Chase has helped Burrow inject life into this offense. They’ve been pretty strong in both the pass and the rush. They’re middle of the pack in both rushing and passing, but they’re 11th in scoring offense and they manage the clock very well. They do struggle a bit with turnovers and they allow a lot of pressure to get to Burrow. Burrow has matured and handles the pressure a little better, but he makes his fair share of mistakes when pressured and takes more than enough sacks. The Ravens have been exceptional as they defy the odds week in and week out. They have 16 total players on IR and are missing a number of key players. Last week, we saw them step up in the rushing attack though and Bateman made some key plays in his debut to keep the chains moving. They also will have TE Boyle return this week, and may see Watkins return from injury also. The Ravens are slowly returning key pieces each week. I think they have to treat this game very seriously, as the Bengals are certainly a threat and have a more put together defense that last season. However, Lamar seems well aware of that and has been watching plenty of tape and preparing accordingly. I like Baltimore to continue their hot streak, but the Bengals will make it a close one.

BAL 30 CIN 26

FOOTBALL TEAM @ PACKERS

So far this season the Washington defense has performed rather disappointingly this season after finishing 2nd in total defense and 6th in sacks last season. This season they’re a putrid 31st in total defense and only 21st in sacks. They do get a fair amount of turnovers, but they’re dead last in scoring. They’re offense is also in the bottom half of the rankings. The one thing they do well is block. The offensive line is tied for the fewest sacks given up. Aside from that, they’ve been a bitter disappointment, and better teams have gone down at the hands of Rodgers and the Packers. Included in those better teams is the Bears, the very team Rodgers has declared ownership of. Through the first 6 weeks, the Packers have been slightly below average on offense, but they have found a groove the passed couple weeks. Rodgers is always gonna be a strong bet and impossible to bet against. The Packers even sport a top 10 defense and force their fair share of turnovers. With the Football Team playing badly this season and the Packers still having Rodgers, it’s safe to say this should be a very comfortable win for Green Bay.

GB 34 WAS 16

FALCONS @ DOLPHINS

The Falcons are coming off a bye week while the Dolphins are coming off a loss in London to the lowly Jaguars. Neither team is very strong. As a matter of fact, they’re both towards the bottom of the league in most statistical categories. The Falcons are 29th in sacks and 31st in scoring allowed. The Dolphins are only 30th in scoring allowed and 25th in sacks. The Falcons are 29th in offense and the Dolphins are 28th in offense. Both teams are pretty neck n neck when it comes to who’s the worse team. The key difference stats-wise is that the Falcons are 3rd in total defense and allow the 3rd fewest sacks. It’s their lone bright spot in terms of team statistics, but is it enough to get them the win? The Dolphins are just as bad, even a little worse than the Falcons, but the Dolphins are also having some injury trouble. In a week where we’ve heard lots of trade buzz around the potential move of Deshaun Watson, I think this game is the one that breaks the camel’s back and forces the Texan’s hand.

ATL 24 MIA 10

PANTHERS @ GIANTS

The Panthers and Giants have both been rough the passed couple weeks. The difference is that at one point, the Panthers were 3-0 and the Giants have just been plain mediocre all season. The Giants are also a little banged up which should work in the Panthers’ favor. Both offenses are slightly below average and they both have given up their fair share of turnovers. The Giants give up a lot less sacks, but the Panthers score the ball more often. The Giants are a lot worse on defense as they rank 27th in total defense while the Panthers find themselves on the other end of the rankings at 6th. The Giants have been much better passing the ball than running it. That fairs well for the Panthers as they’re top 3 in passing defense. With Barkley not looking likely to return to the lineup this week and Golladay and Ross both dealing with injuries, I think the Panthers may be able to take advantage of the key advantages they have in this one. I like the Panthers in a close one.

CAR 26 NYG 16

EAGLES @ RAIDERS

The Raiders are still going strong after the drama of the Gruden situation behind them. The Eagles lost another game in the same fashion they have all year. They start the game badly and the offense is very slow to find any success, then they turn it on at the end and come up just short of the comeback win. There’s no question that the Raiders offense is less dangerous and deadly as the Bucs offense. They are still a formidable force and Derek Carr looks very strong at the helm of this deceptively dangerous offense. The one edge they do have is their defense. They might not allow less offensive yards than the Bucs, but they get more pressure on the QB and generate more pressure. The Raiders defense plays more physical than the Bucs defense and play with more fire and energy. If either team would limit Hurts’ dual threat abilities, it would more likely be the Raiders. The Raiders have the better offense than the Eagles and they have a better defense. You can expect that they might hang around just as well as they did against the Bucs, but the pressure the Raiders generate may just be enough to secure a comfortable win.

LV 27 PHI 20

LIONS @ RAMS

So some experts say that even with the Rams’ high powered offense, the Lions find a way to hang around in this one and make it interesting. Well, I highly disagree. Goff has looked very ineffective and tries to game manage his way to wins with a total lack of firepower and defensive ability to keep the opposing offenses at bay. The Lions are allowing 29 points per game and they have the 25th ranked overall defense. The Lions also don’t force many turnovers and they struggle to generate pressure. They rank 25th in total offense and are a measly 28th in scoring offense. The Rams on the other hand are 6th in scoring offense and 8th in total offense. Stafford has been resurrected in LA and this offense has been firing on all cylinders. Their overall offense isn’t all that great, but they do only allow 21 points per game. The Rams have clearly won the QB swap, and they are poised for a very strong playoff push. I don’t see this being very close at all, in fact, I think this one is going to end in a resounding blowout victory.

LAR 38 DET 14

TEXANS @ CARDINALS

Well why have one blowout when you can just as easily have two. The Cardinals are red hot right now. They’ve been the best team in the league since week 1 and that starts with this dangerous offense that ranks 7th overall and 4th in scoring. Murray has been the frontrunner in the MVP race and Hopkins has never been happier with the QB passing him the ball, even if he is the 20th of his career, per Hopkins. On the defensive end the Cards rank 13th and force the 3rd most turnovers. The Texans are playing very rough with the rookie Davis Mills under center, but nobody really expected him to be a standout player in his first season. They’re the 7th worst defense in terms of total yards allowed and they’re 7th in points allowed also. With Kingsbury returning from his bout with Covid and the Texans playing their second straight road game. It’s a recipe for another blowout, as the drama behind the potential trading of Watson getting louder and louder this week.

ARI 41 HOU 17

BEARS @ BUCCANEERS

Why enjoy 2 blowout games when we can enjoy 3 of them. The Bears are coming off a loss in which Rodgers declared ownership of the divisional rival and for a brief, hilarious moment, someone changed the Bears’ Wikipedia page to reflect the change in ownership. The Bears offense has been very rough and inserting the rookie Fields into the mix hasn’t made the spark that Nagy anticipated it would. I can fully admit that I expected that he would have at least some small impact on this offense, but Nagy and the OC have put Fields in a bad spot with some very questionable play calling. With a young QB, the coaches have to put their QB in a position at least to have some success and have something to learn from and build on. They have provided him with the opposite and it shows. The defense has been their saving grace. The defense has the most sacks this season and has ground down some pretty solid offenses. This isn’t your average offense though that they’re facing. They’re up against the GOAT and this deadly stacked offense. They’ve been exceptional this season and are the easy Super Bowl betting favorites right now. The defense has only played average, but against a Bears offense that ranks 3rd overall and dead last in passing offense by a considerable margin, let’s just say it’s safe to predict another strong blowout game.

TB 38 CHI 12

COLTS @ 49ERS

This game signifies the return of Jimmy G. Lance wasn’t bad while under center, but Jimmy G just brings a certain level of maturity and game management that Lance lacks. The 49ers missed Garoppolo and now he can bring the dynamic and bravado the offense has been missing. The Colts pass defense isn’t very strong either. The Colts may have been doing pretty well lately, but I think Garoppolo returning brings a sort of resurgence and helps them find a confidence they’ve been missing over the past few weeks. I have to give this game to the 49ers and comfortably

SF 24 IND 17

SAINTS @ SEAHAWKS

For our final game of the season we see the wildly unknown Saints, and the injury battered Seahawks. We saw against Pittsburgh that Seattle wasn’t completely hopeless without Russ and Carson, but they’re absolutely not truly capable. The Saints have been underwhelming with Winston at the helm, but they’re going up against 28th ranked pass defense and the 32nd ranked overall defense. The Seahawks defense also allows more points per game than they score. I just don’t think they have a shot at beating New Orleans, even if Winston and this offense have been mediocre. I’m giving the win to the Saints but it will be close.

NO 27 SEA 23

Well there you have it ladies and gentlemen. We have plenty of close entertaining games, blowouts, and rivalries. This week’s slate of games will help clear up the playoff picture and show us more of who’s really and who’s not. I appreciate and am thankful for everyone that supports and shows love to my articles. Thank you for reading, make sure to comment and share, and keep an eye out for the next weeks stories every Thursday.

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