NFL Predictions: Week 3


We are starting off good with the win on the Chiefs so lets see if the good luck continues through week 3. Last week I went 13-3 with no point spread and 9-7 against the ESPN Pick Em lines. Through two weeks the record is 23-9 SU and 17-15 ATS. Onto week 3….

Packers (+2.5) over BENGALS I think I am slowly learning that I am not big on the Bengals this season and have now picked against them three weeks in a row. I have a hard time picturing the Bengals offense being capable of keeping pace with the Packers offense. That being said I do believe that this is a statement game of sorts for Green Bay. After watching the 49ers get manhandled in Seattle last week just one week after they handled the Packers I don’t know what Green Bay is. The Redskins are awful right now so you can throw last weeks score fest out the window making this the game that really identifies if the Packers have moved forward or backwards from 2012. Packers 27 Bengals 19

VIKINGS (-5.5) over Browns– I do not expect the Browns to be shell shocked by the trade of Trent Richardson nor do I think their offense will be any worse without him. The line on this game actually scares me somewhat because the Vikings defense is awful and the offense is prone to mistakes, something a good Browns defense will take advantage of. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if the Browns upset the Vikings if the Vikings implode, but with 0-3 staring them in the face Minnesota has to play with desperation which should push them over a team with no offense. Vikings 16 Browns 9

Rams (+3.5) over COWBOYS– This is a very interesting game. While I don’t see the Rams as being a good team the way some other people do they are a pesky team. They are the kind of team that kind of hangs around and never gives up making them a really live underdog especially on the road. Defensively they can be physical and Dallas does not like that kind of football. Dallas’ offensive line is poor and they are throwing the ball so much that teams are able to just get their best rushers out there to get after Tony Romo. Still when everything clicks for Dallas they area difficult team to stop. Now I don’t see the Cowboys as strong closers and I think that gives the Rams a great chance to hang around, come out of nowhere and steal a game outright. Rams 24 Cowboys 23

Lions (+1.5) over REDSKINS– This line scares me because the way Washington is playing they should not be favored against anyone other than Jacksonville. The defense is atrocious. The offense turns it over on seemingly every drive of the first half. RGIII looks like he needs another few weeks of practice before he is ready for the speed of the games. I just can not see how the Redskin defense can match up with the Lions offensive stars in the game. Right now fantasy players are all taking a strategy of start anyone against Washington. I always dislike taking Detroit on the road and the Redskins certainly don’t want to fall to 0-3, but after the way they played these last two weeks I just cant pick them, even against Detroit. Lions 31 Redskins 20

TITANS (-3.5) over Chargers– The Chargers went through a mentally exhausting game in Philadelphia last week and have to go back to back across the country this week. They are certainly playing with a renewed energy compared to last season, but the circumstances of the game concern me with them. I’m still not a big believer in Tennessee as a winning team but I love them as an underdog and I really like the matchup they have this week. I think if they drag this game down the Chargers just will not have it in them to answer back. Titans 20 Chargers 14

PATRIOTS (-7.5) over Buccaneers– New England is off to a slow start again this year and clearly looks vulnerable. They could be 0-2 just as easily as the Buccaneers could be 2-0. Tampa is coming apart at the seams and the QB is probably one or two weeks away from being benched if things do not improve. The Bucs defense has played terrific the last two weeks and Id expect them to give Tom Brady fits this week as well, but the Patriots are one of those teams that doesn’t let a team get away with a mistake too often. I think that will be the difference as Freeman will make enough costly mistakes to cost the team the game.  Will it be by more than a score?  I’m not as convinced about that, but I’ll predict it anyway. Patriots 24 Buccaneers 14

Cardinals (+7.5) over SAINTS– New Orleans came out on top last week in a game they probably should have lost. I believe the Cardinals can match up somewhat similarly to keep the game close this week. This is also one of those games where the better team, the Saints, tend to take an opponent too lightly. The Saints just won two divisional games and have a prime time game next week to try to show themselves off so I think Arizona gets them in a good spot even though they need to travel. Though the Saints defense has looked better than I expected I expect both teams in the 20s this week. Saints 28 Cardinals 24

Giants (+1.5) over PANTHERS– Desperation week for both teams as one team will be 0-3 after this one. If the Panthers lose their head coach is going to feel that seat getting even warmer. They never win close games and when that happen you have to start pointing fingers at the staff. The Giants defense is playing poor but is that something that the Panthers offense, which seems to have neutered Cam Newton, can take advantage of?  The Giants would be 1-1 if they could cut down on the turnovers, which falls on Eli Manning as much as anyone else. I said in the preseason he did not look right and that has continued into the season. The Panthers secondary is banged up which should help the Giants passing game get on track and right now I just trust Manning to turn it around much more than Newton. Giants 23 Panthers 13

RAVENS (+2.5) over Texans– This line is overreaction to the Ravens struggling in Cleveland last week. If there is one thing I know about the Ravnes through the years it is that they should almost never be an underdog at home. Right now the Ravens are in an identity crisis and slowly learning that some of the things that worked late in the year, which opponents were not really prepared for following the change of coordinators, aren’t working this season. Harbaugh has pulled the reigns in before and I would expect him to do the same here if things get out of control. The Texans could easily be 0-2 and usually teams that win that way have a tendency to give a few of those back. One of those happens this week. Ravens 20 Texans 16

Falcons (+1.5) over DOLPHINS– The Falcons have been a bit unimpressive thus far but I would expect them to win against a Miami team that has taken advantage of a soft schedule early in the season. Miami’s defense is for real and I think it will be interesting to watch the Falcons pass game match up against a terrific pass rush. If Atlanta loses this game I might be a little worried about them having a hangover from last season and the disappointing finish. Though Miami is improved the Falcons should be a better class of team that Miami has a better chance of beating late in the season when their offense is clicking week in and out. Falcons 20 Dolphins 17

JETS (-2.5) over Bills– Certainly this is going to be a defensive battle considering the struggling offenses. I’d imagine the offense that makes the most mistakes is the one that wins this game. Mario Williams, who I have been very critical of, has looked great in the Bills new defense and has to be neutralized if the Jets want to keep Geno Smith from turning the ball over so many times. The Jets will know the defensive scheme well and I’m not sure they will challenge it too much instead relying on their defense to make enough plays to win. Neither of these teams is very good but one will be 2-1 and considered a surprise of the early season. 3 weeks from now the winner will probably be 2-4 and an afterthought in the NFL. Jets 13 Bills 10

49ERS (-10.5) over Colts– the 49ers got beaten down in Seattle and I’d be somewhat worried that this is sticking with them as some of their players are still discussing that game. They just need to put that game behind them and focus on the Colts. I don’t think the Colts are a top level team and going on the road to play this kind of defense is no easy task. The 49ers defense is going to harass Andrew Luck all game and once he starts turning the ball over I’d expect the game to snowball from there. If San Francisco were to lose this game it may be time to press the panic button coming off of last weeks beat down. 49ers 31 Colts 17

SEAHAWKS (-19.5) over Jaguars– I don’t remember the last time I saw a line this large in any week besides week 17 in the NFL. Jacksonville couldn’t even move the ball against the Raiders last week and it took them nearly two full games to score a touchdown. The Seahawks offense is not clicking right now and clearly this is an opponent you can overlook, but even if the Seahawks play poorly how much can the Jaguars score?  7 points? Seahawks 30 Jaguars 3

Bears (-2.5) over STEELERS– I have to stop picking the team I predicted for a Super Bowl appearance just two weeks into  the season. The Steelers offense looks so out of it right now I just cant see them scoring enough points to win consistently this season. Many people seemed to say the Steelers needed a new offensive coordinator after last season and after two weeks that seems to have been a decision Pittsburgh should have made. Nothing they do seems to fit in with the skill set of the players. I’m sure the Bears will make some mistakes with the ball that the Steelers defense takes advantage of, but they need the offense to start producing if they want to win. Bears 20 Steelers 16

BRONCOS (-14.5) over Raiders– At some point in time Denver will match up with a very physical team that will give a game, but the Raiders are not that opponent. The Broncos have put a beating on the Ravens and Giants who are both far better teams than the Raiders. Is there any possible way that the Raiders even make this a game worth watching?  I dont think so. The Broncos are just that good right now. Manning is in such a groove and with so many weapons to pass to it will take a special effort to keep this close. Broncos 30 Raiders 10

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