Movie Quote of the Day:
“At age 11, I audited my parents. Believe me, there were some discrepancies and I was grounded.”
– Allen Gamble, The Other Guys (2010)
I had another good week in my picks last week, finishing 11-4. Just so that everyone understands, there weren’t 16 games last week because two teams had a bye (New England and Tennessee). I didn’t explain that last week. Anyway, I think I’m officially off the Miami bandwagon; their stock is falling fast. The team that I’ve been watching and has looked the part of a top NFL team is Cincinnati. Andy Dalton has been playing lights out this season.
Here are the match-ups for week five and my picks:
Week four record: 11-4 (73.3 percent)
All-time record: 35-28 (55.5 percent)
Teams with a bye:
New York Jets (3-1)
Indianapolis (2-2) vs. Houston (1-3)
Line: IND -1
Indianapolis has found their footing since starting 0-2. Houston continues to struggle. Matt Hasselbeck is slated to start at quarterback for Indianapolis. I think a 40-year-old Hasselbeck is still a better quarterback than anyone on the Texans roster. I’m taking the Colts in a close, low-scoring game.
Prediction: Colts 17, Texans 13
St. Louis (2-2) vs. Green Bay (4-0)
Green Bay, Wisc.
Line: GB -10
I wonder if rookie running back Todd Gurley can repeat his performance that he had last week against Arizona. Green Bay’s run defense has been surprisingly good and flying under the radar ever since game one. Not just the run defense, but also Green Bay’s entire defense has played well in the last three games. I don’t think Foles and the Rams’ offense will be able to score enough points to beat Green Bay on the road. Aaron Rodgers is near perfect when he plays at home. I have to take the Packers.
Prediction: Packers 34, Rams 19
Chicago (1-3) vs. Kansas City (1-3)
Kansas City, Mo.
Line: KC -10.5
Chicago finally got their first win of the season last week against Oakland. Both of these teams have had their struggles to start the season. I don’t think Chicago’s defense will be able to stop Jamaal Charles. I expect the Chiefs to get stops against Jay Cutler and Chicago’s offense. Kansas City has the better offense and the better coach. I like the Chiefs to get the win.
Prediction: Chiefs 28, Bears 20
Seattle (2-2) vs. Cincinnati (4-0)
Paul Brown Stadium
Line: CIN -2.5
Seattle got away with another win on Monday Night Football thanks to a blown call from the officials, sound familiar? (Yes, I’m still bitter about the Fail Mary). The more I watch Cincinnati, the more they look like one of the best teams the NFL. Anytime a West Coast team travels to the Eastern Time Zone it’s almost always an automatic loss for the West Coast team. I like the Bengals.
Prediction: Bengals 24, Seahawks 19
Washington (2-2) vs. Atlanta (4-0)
Line: ATL -8
I haven’t been able to get a decent look at Washington. They’ve snuck out two wins, but those came on their own home turf. Atlanta has looked really good so far this season. Matt Ryan and the Falcons’ offense have been playing at a very high level. Their defense hasn’t been stellar, but it’s been an improvement from previous seasons. I like the Falcons to win easily.
Prediction: Falcons 34, Redskins 20
Jacksonville (1-3) vs. Tampa Bay (1-3)
Raymond James Stadium
Line: TB -2.5
It’s a battle of bad teams in Florida. Jameis Winston has been up and down so far this season. Winston hasn’t played well at home this season, but Jacksonville’s defense is nothing special. I think Tampa Bay’s defensive line will be too much for Jacksonville’s offensive line and Blake Bortles. I like the Buccaneers get it done in a close game.
Prediction: Buccaneers 22, Jaguars 20
New Orleans (1-3) vs. Philadelphia (1-3)
Lincoln Financial Field
Line: PHI -4.5
New Orleans finally won their first game in an overtime victory against Dallas last week. Philadelphia looked so close to officially getting back on track, but lost a heart-breaking game to Washington. The Eagles have struggled this season, but they’re not far from getting it together. Their issues can be corrected. I expect the Eagles to play well this game after a tough loss last week.
Prediction: Eagles 24, Saints 20
Cleveland (1-3) vs. Baltimore (1-3)
M&T Bank Stadium
Line: BAL -7
Cleveland lost a close game to San Diego last week. Baltimore finally got their first win last week in an overtime win against Pittsburgh. The Ravens have the better team and better coach. I don’t expect Cleveland to outplay Baltimore, and I think this the beginning of Baltimore ascension.
Prediction: Ravens 27, Browns 17
Buffalo (2-2) vs. Tennessee (1-2)
Line: BUF -1
Buffalo didn’t look last week as they lost to the Giants at home. Tennessee is coming off a bye week. Both of the quarterbacks in this game have been surprisingly good. However, I think the Titans have the better quarterback with Marcus Mariota. Tennessee has had extra time to prepare for this game and I think Ken Wisenhunt is a good coach. I’m going to take the upset and pick the Titans.
Prediction: Titans 24, Bills 21
Arizona (3-1) vs. Detroit (0-4)
Line: ARI -2.5
Even though Arizona lost last week at home to St. Louis, they still look like a top five team in the NFL. Detroit has looked abysmal this season. This is another West Coast team traveling across the country to play an East Coast team. I know I said those teams usually lose these kinds of road trips, but I like the Cardinals to get it done in a close game.
Prediction: Cardinals 26, Lions 23
Denver (4-0) vs. Oakland (2-2)
Line: DEN -4.5
Denver still looks like the most unimpressive undefeated team so far. This has the feel of a trap game for the Broncos. Oakland isn’t a bad team. I think the Raiders’ defense is good enough to slow down Peyton Manning, who hasn’t looked good. The real question is if Derek Carr can score against Denver’s stout defense. I’m taking the Broncos in a close game.
Prediction: Broncos 24, Raiders 23
San Francisco (1-3) vs. New York Giants (2-2)
East Rutherford, N.J.
Line: NYG -7
San Francisco is trending in the wrong direction fast. The Giants got a nice win against a good Buffalo squad last week. The Giants are easily the better team and also have the better coach. Like I’ve said already West Coast teams rarely win games on the East Coast. I think the Giants win comfortably.
Prediction: Giants 27, 49ers 10
Pittsburgh (2-2) vs. San Diego (2-2)
San Diego, Calif.
Line: SD -3
Mike Vick wasn’t awful in his first start replacing Ben Roethlisberger. It’ll be a different story if he can play well after a long road trip to the other side of the country. San Diego struggles against the run. The Steelers are going to have to rely on running back Le’Veon Bell a lot in order to win this game. However, I don’t think it’ll be enough. I like San Diego to win at home.
Prediction: Chargers 23, Steelers 20
Game of the Week:
New England (3-0) vs. Dallas (2-2)
Line: NE -10
New England has been playing really good in their first three games. Tom Brady has been playing fantastic. Dallas has struggled ever since Tony Romo and Dez Bryant went down. I think Dallas is going to make things difficult for the Patriots in the first half, but I think New England pulls away in the second half.
Prediction: Patriots 35, Cowboys 21
Thanks for reading
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