It has been an exciting start to the 2016 season and week five should provide for some good entertainment. There are some really intriguing games and some big returns that could change the way this season goes. Enjoy!
Washington Redskins @ Baltimore Ravens
The Washington Redskins are on a two game winning streak and the Ravens lost their first game last week. The Redskins have been better in almost every offensive statistical category this season with the exception of rushing yards per game, time of possession. Defensively though, the Ravens are better in every way. It seems like the Ravens are comfortable going forward with Terrance West as their main running back as they cut ties with Justin Forsett this week. West should have a big game considering that the Redskins have given up an average of 133 rushing yards per game this season and almost 28 points per game. The Ravens should control the ball for most of this game and win a close one at home.
WAS 23 – 24 BAL
New England Patriots @ Cleveland Browns
Tom Brady is back and facing possibly the worst team in the league. Without Brady, the Patriots were able to go 3 – 1 and average just over 20 points per game. This obviously includes the shutout last week when their Quarterback, Jacoby Brissett, was unable to move the ball at all. With Brady back in, this team should score more than 20 points given that they are facing a Browns team that has given up an average of almost 29 points per game. It will be interesting to see how Bill Belichick handles with Cleveland’s x-factor, Terrelle Pryor. He is Cleveland’s only hope, but Belichick is too good to let him take the Patriots down single handedly. Look for the Patriots to dominate this game and Brady to make a big statement in his return.
NE 31 – 13 CLE
Philadelphia Eagles @ Detroit Lions
The Philadelphia Eagles have been one of the biggest surprises to this point in the season, especially their rookie quarterback, Carson Wentz. They have averaged just over 30 points per game, thanks to Wentz’s poise and ability to move the ball like he is a ten-year veteran. Their defense has been intimidating as well as they have only allowed nine points per game through their three games this season. Detroit, however, has not looked as good as they were projected to. They have been able to move the ball, but most of that has come in garbage time. Jim Bob Cooter was supposed to be the savior for Matthew Stafford, but so far hasn’t been that. They have had trouble running the ball and that probably won’t change this week. The rested Eagles should be able to beat Detroit without much of an issue.
PHI 27 – 20 DET
Chicago Bears @ Indianapolis Colts
The Chicago Bears finally got their first win and looked good against the poor Lions and the Colts looked bad in London against Jacksonville. The Colts have averaged 27 points per game so far, but most of that has come in the form of failed comebacks. Neither of these teams have been particularly good at running or protecting against the run this season so it will be interesting to see if one of these teams can control the clock and get a much needed victory. Ultimately, the Colts will probably look bad after travelling back from London and the Bears should squeeze out their second victory of the season.
CHI 23 – 21 IND
Tennessee Titans @ Miami Dolphins
The Titans have looked good running the ball and the Dolphins haven’t looked good at anything thus far. DeMarco Murray has looked just as good as he did in 2014 and has kept the Titans in al of their games this season. He should have no problems against a poor Miami run defense that has given up almost 130 rushing yards per game this season. The only hope for the Dolphins is that Ryan Tannehill is able to move the ball through the air and get some cheap plays against the Tennessee defense. That will be tough for them to do and they will probably lose a low scoring game to the Titans.
TEN 17 – 13 MIA
Houston Texans @ Minnesota Vikings
The Texans won a close game against the Titans last week and the Vikings continue to look like the best team in the NFC. The Viking defense has given up 12.5 points per game and has had two or three turnovers this season. That is bad news for Brock Osweiler who has given up six interceptions this season and hasn’t really looked good at all so far. He hasn’t been able to get the ball to DeAndre Hopkins as much as he should and that has hurt this team significantly. Look for Minnesota to shut the Houston passing game down and destroy the Texans in this game.
HOU 13 – 24 MIN
New York Jets @ Pittsburgh Steelers
The Steelers look like they are back to being the best offensive team in the NFL. Le’Veon Bell was able to rush for 144 yards in his season debut and open up the passing game for Ben Roethlisberger to do whatever he wanted through the air. It will be interesting to see what Bell is able to do this week when he faces one of the best run stopping teams in the league. The Jets have only allowed an average of 70 yards per game and 285 passing yards per game. That keeps them in more games than not. Ryan Fitzpatrick hasn’t looked good so far and that has been the downfall of this team. He should be able to turn it around at some point and this game will be closer than most people would think as the Steelers pull out a close one.
NYJ 30 – 31 PIT
Atlanta Falcons @ Denver Broncos
Julio Jones had the game of his life last week and is putting himself in the conversation as best wide receiver in the game right now. That was against one of the worst secondaries in the league and this week they face one of the best defenses. The Broncos are only giving up an average of 169 yards through the air this season and it will be interesting for these two teams to matchup. Offensively, the Broncos have been able to step up recently and shown signs of improvement over the last two games. The Atlanta defense isn’t really that good and will be the downfall for this team in this game. Denver should win this one in a good matchup at home.
ATL 21 – 29 DEN
Cincinnati Bengals @ Dallas Cowboys
This is one of the better matchups this week of games. Cincinnati is coming in off of a big win against Miami and has had some extra rest and Dallas is coming off of a needed win in San Francisco against the 49ers. The matchup to watch will be Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas offensive line against the Cincinnati run defense. Cincinnati hasn’t given up 100 yards or a rushing touchdown in any game this season. Ezekiel Elliott has started looking like the number four pick in the draft and is currently leading the league in rushing yards with 412 yards. This will be a hard fought battle, but the Cowboy defense might not be good enough to slow down AJ Green and the Bengals passing attack and wil cause the Bengals to win a close one.
CIN 24 – 23 DAL
Buffalo Bills @ Los Angeles Rams
The Bills and the Rams are two of the more surprising teams so far this season. The Bills are coming off of a big win against their rivals, the Patriots, and the Rams are on a three game winning streak. The Rams defense has been the key to their success as they have only given up 19 points per game. The Bills are kind of the same story as they have only given up 17 points per game and have been surprisingly good this season. The battle between these two teams will be on the ground as LeSean McCoy is back to his old self and it looks like Todd Gurley is suffering from not having any good players around him on the offense. That should be the difference in the game and the Bills should take this one in Los Angeles.
BUF 20 – 17 LA
San Diego Chargers @ Oakland Raiders
The Chargers and Raiders have played similarly so far this season except that the Raiders have been able to win their close games. The Raiders have been able to rush for 126 yards per game this season between their three running backs and the Chargers have only averaged 95. Their rushing defenses, however, match up quite nicely as the Raiders have given up an average of 134.5 yards per game, whereas the Chargers have given up an average of 82 yards per game. This will be a close matchup that the Raiders squeak out at home.
SD 20 – 23 OAK
New York Giants @ Green Bay Packers
The Giants have lost two straight games and the Packers are coming off of a bye week and a big win the week before. This will be the biggest test for the Giants defense that they bought in the offseason. They haven’t faced a quarterback like Aaron Rodgers so far this season and probably won’t for the rest of the year. Aaron Rodgers has a 7 – 2 record coming off of a bye week and generally dominates upon his return. This game should be no different, as the Giants have not looked good recently. The Packers have only given up an average of 42 yards on the ground per game this season so Eli Manning is going to have to step up and beat the Packers. He will probably fall short and the Packers will win this one.
NYG 24 – 31 GB
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Carolina Panthers
These two teams have been very disappointing so far this season. Carolina was expected to pick up where they left off last year, but they haven’t been able to do so and the Buccaneers were supposed to make a big jump this season and haven’t done so yet. Both of their defenses have been suspect to this point as the Panthers have given up 29.5 points per game this season and the Buccaneers have given up 32. It doesn’t look like Cam Newton will play in this game and that will be the downfall of this team in this game. Tampa Bay should win this game unless Newton plays, but it will be close regardless.
TB 29 – 27 CAR
Bye Week – Kansas City Chiefs, New Orleans Saints, Seattle Seahawks, Jacksonville Jaguars
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