The Cincinnati Bengals and the Arizona Cardinals are the last two unbeaten teams in the NFL. Let that sink in for a moment. Carson Palmer's first team and his current team are both undefeated, and Palmer is watching from the bench thanks to injury. Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell have had strong rookie campaigns for the Browns so far, but Ben Tate returns from his annual mid-season break/injury struggles and may re-claim the top spot in the Cleveland backfield. and Kyle Orton is the starting quarterback in Buffalo. There are plenty of interesting story lines this week, and some juicy matchups to dive into.
Chicago Bears at Carolina Panthers. The Panthers are a team in transition. Their backfield is a mess, and Cam Newton is still recovering from injury. The Chicago Bears just got routed by the Packers, but they are the better team. The Bears are who we thought they were, and the Panthers will let them off the hook. Let's crown them. Final score, Bears 24, Panthers 14.
Cleveland Browns at Tennessee Titans. In this week's AFC Central matchup between the Titans and Browns, the Cleveland Browns are showing signs of life. They've played some close games this year, even when they've lost. The Titans are struggling with injuries. The Browns win this one, 35-14.
St. Louis Rams at Philadelphia Eagles. Austin Davis looked great in his last start. Nick Foles, not so great. Foles will bounce back this week, and LeSean McCoy will finally look like the guy you drafted first or second in your fantasy leagues. Eagles win, 24-7.
Atlanta Falcons at New York Giants. Don't look now, but the Falcons still look bad. The Giants are getting better, and get Odell Beckham III back this week for the first time. I'm picking the Giants in this one. 35-28.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints. Yes, the Bucs won a game. No they're still not a good football team. The Saints win this one, 35-7. One of their running backs might even score a TD!
Houston Texans at Dallas Cowboys. Who is the best running back in the NFL right now? If you base your judgment off of statistical performance, your answer is DeMarco Murray. He's been great this year and has stayed healthy so far. This Dallas offense is finally starting to fire on all cylinders, but faces a tough matchup against the Texans. The battle of Texas is going to be a close game, but the Cowboys will win, 24-21.
Buffalo Bills at Detroit Lions. In this old-school NFC North matchup between Kyle Orton and the Detroit Lions....never mind, Orton's a Bill now, not a Bear. Sammy Watkins and Orton seem to be building chemistry already, and expect a big game out of Sammy. Don't start Orton until we've seen how he does in this offense. The Lions generally have a strong offense, but Megatron is struggling with injuries a bit. He'll likely play, but I think they slow him down. I'm picking Buffalo to win this game, 24-20. Sammy Watkins scores a TD.
Baltimore Ravens at Indianapolis Colts. This week the Baltimore Ravens travel to Indy to face Johnny Unitas' real team. Before every home game, Ravens fans traditionally touch the "golden toe" of a Johnny Unitas statue outside of their stadium. This tribute to a Baltimore sports icon always seems out of place when the Ravens play the Colts. If I was Indy, I'd hand out Unitas jerseys before the game. The Ravens are an average football team. The Colts are showing that they are, yet again, a playoff team. Andrew Luck has another outstanding game, and the Colts win, 35-14.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Jacksonville Jaguars. The Steelers almost lost to the Browns this year. The Jaguars need to win a game eventually. Any game that the Jaguars win will be an upset at this point. I'm picking them to upset the Steelers this week at home in Jacksonville! Blake Bortles wins his home debut in Jacksonville, lifting the Jaguars to 1-4! Final score, Jacksonville 24, Pittsburgh 21.
Arizona Cardinals at Denver Broncos. This is going to be a tough game for Arizona. If Carson Palmer was under center, I'd say the Cardinals would have a chance. That being said, Drew Stanton is the starting QB in Arizona. He's done well, but he won't do well enough to beat Denver. Denver wins, 35-32.
Kansas City Chiefs at San Francisco 49ers. The Chiefs blew out New England in Kansas City last week. The Bears crushed the 49ers in San Francisco to open the season. The Chiefs are a team that is capable of putting together a solid game, and the 49ers don't look as unbeatable as they have in years past. I think the Chiefs win this game, 28-14.
New York Jets at San Diego Chargers. It's "Just End The Season JETS JETS JETS" time for the New York Jets again. The Chargers are looking dominant this season. The Jets are looking sloppy, even if Chris Ivory is putting together a solid season. Chargers win, 21-20.
Cincinnati Bengals at New England Patriots. The historical trends tell us that Cincinnati will likely lose this game. Marvin Lewis struggles the week after a bye, and he struggles in prime time games. Bill Belichick has never been blown out twice in a row with the second game being played at home. Vontaze Burfict will likely miss this game as well, making for a dire situation for the Bengals. That being said, Marvin Lewis has a winning record in prime time games in which the Bengals are favored to win, and the Patriots look like a shell of the team they once were. The Bengals need to win games like this if they are going to make a run in the postseason, and I think they win on Sunday night, 21-12.
Seattle Seahawks at Washington *******s. Much like Mike Zimmer, Jay Gruden's first season as an NFL head coach has been a struggle. RGIII is injured, and Kirk Cousins is playing like a backup.The Seahawks defense will feast on this matchup, and the Seahawks win this game, 35-14.
Sports give us as the human race something to cheer for and support and give hope to all of us.