Minnesota Vikings @ Detroit Lions
The Vikings are visiting the Lions in a tie breaking game for first place in the NFC North. The Vikings won their first game in five weeks last week and need to continue their roll, especially against the Lions. The Lions have won their last two games, including a game in Minnesota. The key for the Vikings is to give Sam Bradford time to find his receivers. If Bradford is given a little bit of time, then he might be able to find Stefon Diggs and Kyle Rudolph for a couple of touchdowns. The key for the Lions is to not turn the ball over. All of the Vikings wins have happened because they were able to get interceptions and fumbles recovered for touchdowns. If the Vikings don’t get any turnovers, then it is hard to imagine them scoring over 20 points. The Lions should win this close game.
MIN 17 – 21 DET
Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys
The Redskins are going to Dallas for Thanksgiving in a huge NFC East game. Both of these teams look really different compared to when they faced off in week two. Kirk Cousins is starting to look really good, much better than he did when they faced last time. The Cowboys keep getting better and better, each week throughout this winning streak that started against the Washington Redskins. The key for the Washington Redskins is to throw the ball as often as possible. The Cowboys secondary has been overachieving a little bit and if the Redskins can force the Cowboys to pass as well, then the Redskins have a chance to win. The key for the Cowboys is to keep feeding the ball to Ezekiel Elliott. Elliott has really become a game changer since the last time these two teams faced off and could have the same effect that he had last week against the Ravens. This should be a high scoring game that the Cowboys should win in the end.
WAS 27 – 31 DAL
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Indianapolis Colts
The Pittsburgh Steelers are going to Indianapolis for a big AFC game. The Steelers were able to get a big win against the Browns, but they haven’t beat a team with a record of .500 or better since week four. The Colts were able to get a big win against the Titans, but have been inconsistent and it doesn’t look like they will have Andrew Luck for this game. The key for the Steelers is to stop Frank Gore and the Colts rushing game. They need to make Scott Tolzien uncomfortable and make him try to beat them. The key for the Colts is to run with Frank Gore. They need to make it easier for Scott Tolzien and make the Steelers to sell out to stop the run. If there are more open receivers, then Tolzien might be able to make a few plays. Pittsburgh will win this game because of the Colts loss of Luck.
PIT 27 – 13 IND
Tennessee Titans @ Chicago Bears
The Tennessee Titans are going to Chicago for a game that they need to win so they can keep up with the rest of their division. The Titans are only a game and a half behind the Texans and still have plenty of time to catch up. The Bears postseason dreams are almost over as they are four games behind the Vikings and Lions and if they don’t win this one then they will definitely be five games back with five games left. The key for the Titans is to control the football with DeMarco Murray. He didn’t have a huge game last week and they lost and should be changed if they want to win. The key for the Bears is to give the ball to Jordan Howard. He has been the only bright spot on this Chicago team and by giving the ball to him, it is harder for Jay Cutler to make mistakes. This should be a close game, but the Titans should win.
TEN 24 – 22 CHI
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Buffalo Bills
The Jaguars are going to Buffalo for a game that the Bills need. The Jaguars are not very good and have lost TJ Yeldon because of an ankle injury. The Bills still don’t have any weapons on the outside and continue to win with a good running game and defense. The key for the Jaguars is to give the ball to Chris Ivory. They need to keep their defense off of the field so they can keep up with the Bills running game. The key for the Bills is to attack Blake Bortles. He is prone to mistakes and if the Bills can increase those chances to giving Tyrod Taylor a short field to play on. The Bills should be able to win this game fairly easily.
JAX 14 – 24 BUF
Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens
The Cincinnati Bengals are going to Baltimore for a big AFC North game. The Bengals can’t lose this game or it is very unlikely that they will be able to get into the playoffs. The Ravens need this win as well so they can stay in first place and be in the driver’s seat for this division. The key for the Bengals is to shut down the Ravens receivers. The Ravens seem afraid to run the ball despite having some success so if the Bengals can force the run, then they might be able to win. The key for the Ravens is to shut down Tyler Eifert. They don’t have to worry about AJ Green, so the biggest target for Andy Dalton is Eifert and if he is shutout then it is hard for the Bengals to score enough to win. The injuries of the Bengals will be the reason that they lose this game.
CIN 13 – 20 BAL
Arizona Cardinals @ Atlanta Falcons
The Cardinals are going to Atlanta for an important NFC matchup. The Cardinals haven’t looked really good at any point this season and need to win to keep their season alive. The Falcons are coming off of a needed bye week and they need to win with the Buccaneers starting to look good. The key for the Cardinals is to continue to give the ball David Johnson. He has been the only thing to give this team hope and if they want to win, they are going to have to give him the ball. The key for the Falcons is to get to Carson Palmer. Palmer hasn’t been good this season and if they can fluster him, then the Falcons should be able to win. The Falcons should be able to win this game and maintain their control of the NFC South.
ARI 23 – 31 ATL
New York Giants @ Cleveland Browns
The Giants are going to Cleveland and need to play better against the Browns than they did against the Bears last week. The Giants are in control of the first wildcard spot and are only two games behind the Cowboys. The Browns are the only team in the league to be mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, but they need a win to avoid becoming the second winless team in the history of the league. The key for the Giants is to get to the quarterback, no matter who it is. The only real strength of the Browns is their receiving corps and if they are shut down, then it is nearly impossible for them to win this game. The key for the Browns is to run the ball effectively with Duke Johnson and Isaiah Crowell. If they can take the pressure off of their quarterback, then they might have a chance, but it is highly unlikely and the Giants should win.
NYG 31 – 12 CLE
Los Angeles Rams @ New Orleans Saints
The Los Angeles Rams are going to New Orleans in a good battle of the Rams defense against the Saints offense. Jared Goff lost his debut game, but he was also facing one of the best pass rushes in the game and should be a little more comfortable against the Saints. The Saints lost a divisional game against the Panthers, but had an extra three days to rest and should come out firing. The key for the Rams is to give the ball to Todd Gurley. He had a few good runs early, but they didn’t give him the ball to make a difference against the Dolphins. If they can get him going, then Goff’s job becomes a lot easier. The key for the Saints is to attack the Rams secondary and get an early lead. If they can get a healthy lead early, then that makes Goff have to play from behind and gives him more opportunity to make mistakes. This should be a close game that the Saints end up winning,
LA 17 – 21 NO
San Francisco 49ers @ Miami Dolphins
The 49ers are going to Miami in a tough game for them. The 49ers are on the second longest losing streak in the league. The Dolphins have been really good in the last couple of weeks and this should be a favorable matchup for them. The key for the 49ers is to move the ball with Colin Kaeprnick and Carlos Hyde. The 49ers need to control the ball and prevent the Dolphins from getting the ball too often. The key for the Dolphins is to run the ball with Jay Ajayi as often as possible. The 49ers have the worst rushing defense in all of football and the Dolphins have been able to dominate when he has a really good game. The Dolphins should win this game pretty easily.
SF 10 – 28 MIA
San Diego Chargers @ Houston Texans
The San Diego Chargers are visiting the Houston Texans in a good AFC game. The Chargers are coming off of a bye and have shown flashes of being a good team this season, despite their record. The Texans are coming home from a loss to the Raiders in Mexico City and need to play better, especially with the Colts breathing down their necks. The key for the Chargers is to stop Lamar Miller. Brock Osweiler had a decent game against the Raiders, but he is still capable of making a lot of mistakes and the Chargers should make him beat them. The key for the Texans is to play mistake free football. Philip Rivers and Melvin Gordon are both really good and if the Texans give the Chargers good field position, then it will be hard for the Texans to win. This will be a close game, but the Chargers should win.
SD 24 – 21 HOU
Seattle Seahawks @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Seattle Seahawks are going to Tampa Bay for a big NFC game. The Seahawks are one of the best teams in the league and have beat two of the other best teams in the league. The Buccaneers are also coming off of a big win against the Chiefs and are looking to build some more momentum to take over the division. The key for the Seahawks is to shut down Mike Evans. If Jameis Winston doesn’t have his favorite target, then there is less of a chance for the Buccaneers to win. The key for Tampa Bay is to give the ball to Doug Martin. He looked good last week against the Kansas City defense and he is the key to opening up the Buccaneers offense. This will be a good game, but the Seahawks should win.
SEA 24 – 20 TB
New England Patriots @ New York Jets
The New England Patriots are visiting their old rival, the New York Jets. The Patriots are coming off of a big win against the 49ers and the Jets are coming off of a bye, but if they lose this game, then it is impossible for them to win their division and pretty much impossible to grab a wildcard spot. The key for the Patriots is for Tom Brady to have another big game. The Jets strength is their defensive line and if Brady is able to take care of the Jets secondary, then they should be able to win. The key for the Jets is to run the ball with Matt Forte. The Patriots front seven is the weakest part of their team and a really good running back could take advantage of that and sneak a victory for the Jets. The Patriots should win this game, but it might be closer than New England fans would hope for.
NE 28 – 24 NYJ
Carolina Panthers @ Oakland Raiders
The Carolina Panthers are going to Oakland to face off with one of the best teams in the NFL. The Panthers have been playing a lot better lately, but they lost Luke Kuechly last week. The Raiders were able to have another comeback last week and Derek Carr is still an MVP candidate this season. The key for the Panthers is to get to Derek Carr. He has been really good and if they are able to get to him a little bit, then he might make a mistake or to in Carolina’s favor. The key for the Raiders is to get the ball to their receivers. The Carolina secondary is not very good and Amari Cooper and Michael Crabtree should be able to take advantage of them and score at least three touchdowns. Oakland should be able to win this game as long as they don’t make a lot of mistakes.
CAR 21 – 31 OAK
Kansa City Chiefs @ Denver Broncos
The Kansas City Chiefs and Denver Broncos are facing off in a big AFC West matchup. Both teams are centered around their defense and both teams need this win if they want to catch the Oakland Raiders. The key for the Chiefs is to run the ball and control the clock. That could force Trevor Siemian and force him to beat them. The key for the Broncos is to hit Alex Smith. Smith doesn’t take a lot of risks so he doesn’t make a lot of mistakes, but if the Broncos can make him get the ball out quicker, then the Broncos could win this game. This should be a really close and physical battle that the Broncos should come out of with the win.
KC 17 – 23 DEN OT
Green Bay Packers @ Philadelphia Eagles
The Packers are stumbling as they travel to Philadelphia. Green Bay has given up 89 points in the last two games and have only been able to score 46. The Eagles lost against a team that has a really good defense and need to win this game to keep up with the rest of their division. The key for the Packers is to stop the Philadelphia running game. There is uncertainty if Darren Sproles or Ryan Matthews will play and Carson Wentz hasn’t been good in the last couple of weeks. The key for the Eagles is to attack the Green Bay secondary. The Packers are still beat up on defense and it should benefit Carson Wentz. He needs to throw the ball deep and open up the offense. This will be a close game of two beat up teams, but the Eagles should win.
GB 24 – 28 PHI
This was another interesting weekend of football as the playoff picture is starting to shape up and there are going to be some really good races down the stretch of this season. The Cowboys looked really good again for the longest winning streak in the history of that historic franchise. The Packers looked really bad again and dropped seven spots as they have gotten blown out two weeks in a row and need to find something to turn their fortunes very soon. The biggest jump of the week went to the Colts with their big win against the Titans, but with a short week and a potential loss of Andrew Luck, can they keep the momentum up. There is another good slate of games this week, especially on Thanksgiving when all six teams have a decent chance at making the playoffs.
1. Dallas Cowboys (9-1; Prev. 1)
The Dallas Cowboys had a rough time in the first half, but they were able to grind it out and get a big win. The most impressive thing in this game against the Ravens was Dez Bryant. He had his biggest game of the season and really looked like he did two years ago. He only had 80 yards, but there were some very difficult catches and his ability to make a play after was very impressive. Ezekiel Elliott had to fight for most of the game, but was still able to get 97 yards on the ground against the best run defense in the NFL. They have a tough game this week as they take on the Redskins in a Thanksgiving matchup.
2. Oakland Raiders (8-2; Prev. 2)
The Oakland Raiders won a big game against the Houston Texans in Mexico City with a big fourth quarter comeback. Derek Carr looked really good, throwing 295 yards, three touchdowns and only one interception. The Raiders only had a total of 30 yards rushing, but they didn’t need any more against the Texans. Their defense gave up 124 yards on the ground and let Brock Osweiler have probably his best game of the season, but they were able to hold on for the victory. This week the Raiders are taking on the Carolina Panthers in Oakland.
3. New England Patriots (8-2; Prev. 3)
The Patriots were able to bounce back and get a big win against a bad 49ers team. Tom Brady completed 60 percent of his passes for 280 yards and four touchdowns to four different receivers. The fact that Rob Gronkowski did not play didn’t hinder the Patriots offense at all. LeGarrette Blount was able to rush for 124 yards on nineteen carries. He didn’t get any touchdowns, but he really didn’t need to. Their defense played better as well, holding Carlos Hyde to 86 yards on 19 carries and only gave up two touchdowns throughout the game. They have a big divisional game this week when they visit the New York Jets.
4. Seattle Seahawks (7-2-1; Prev. 5)
The Seattle Seahawks won another big game, this time against the Philadelphia Eagles. Russell Wilson looks better and better each week and they were able to beat one of the best defenses in the NFL. He was able to throw for 272 yards and a touchdown pass to Jimmy Graham and a touchdown reception from Doug Baldwin. CJ Prosise had 76 yards on the ground with a touchdown before he went down with an injury. Thomas Rawls looked good, but he got banged up as well. That should be the one concern for the Seahawks because their running game is very valuable to them. This week they are going to Tampa Bay for another big NFC game.
5. Kansas City Chiefs (7-3; Prev. 4)
The Kansas City Chiefs lost a close game on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Alex Smith didn’t have a great game, throwing for 261 yards and a touchdown, but also threw an interception. They were only able to run the ball for 82 yards and a touchdown and should have run the ball a little bit more. They were averaging 3.9 yards per carry, but only ran it 21 times. Their defense had a tough time containing Jameis Winston and were only able to force one turnover. This week, they are going to Denver to face the Broncos in a battle for second place in the AFC West.
6. Denver Broncos (7-3; Prev. 6)
The Broncos had a good bye in the sense of Kansas City losing, but had a bad one in the sense of the Raiders winning. They are a game behind the lead and they need to play better on offense in these last six games if they want to win their division and get a first round bye. They have a tough schedule remaining though, four of the games are against a team with at least seven wins so far this season, including a game against the Chiefs this week.
7. New York Giants (7-3; Prev. 9)
The Giants had a tough time with the Bears on Sunday. They gave up sixteen points in the first half, but shut them out in the second half. The impressive thing that the Giants did was rush for a combined 102 yards and a touchdown. They have had troubles running the football and if they can do that consistently, then the Giants could be even harder to beat. Eli Manning threw for 227 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions. They need to keep rolling on offense to try and catch up to the Dallas Cowboys. They are visiting Cleveland this week in a game that they should win.
8. Detroit Lions (6-4; Prev. 10)
The Detroit Lions were able to win a good game against the Jaguars, thanks to their defense and special teams. It was good to see given the fact that most of their wins are because of their offense. Matthew Stafford threw for 278 yards, no touchdowns, but had no interceptions. Their running backs combined for fourteen yards and Eric Ebron had a one-yard touchdown rush. The Lions are still in first place, but they need to win this week against the Vikings in a Thanksgiving matchup for first place.
9. Atlanta Falcons (6-4; Prev. 7)
The Falcons had a rough bye week this week because the Buccaneers were able to beat the Chiefs and come within a game of the Falcons. The Falcons needed the bye though because they had lost three of their last five games and needed to refocus. They have the Cardinals coming to town this week in a game that the Falcons should win.
10. Houston Texans (6-4; Prev. 8)
The Houston Texans had a tough game against the Oakland Raiders in Mexico City. Brock Osweiler didn’t have a terrible game, he threw for 243 yards, a touchdown and only one interception. Lamar Miller was able to rush for 104 yards and a touchdown, but the Texans couldn’t keep it up for all four quarters. Their defense looked good in the first three quarters of this game, but gave up two big touchdowns at the end game to lose the game. Houston is now just a game above the Colts and this week they are taking on the Chargers in Houston in a must win game for the Texans.
11. Washington Redskins (6-3-1; Prev. 12)
The Washington Redskins got their biggest win of the season against the Green Bay Packers. Kirk Cousins had a huge game, throwing for 375 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions. Rob Kelley was able to rush for 137 yards and three touchdowns of his own. Their defense did a good enough job because of their offense, but if they play that way consistently, then they might have some trouble. They have a tough game this week as they travel to Dallas for a big NFC East Thanksgiving game.
12. Minnesota Vikings (6-4; Prev. 14)
The Vikings finally won a game after losing four straight. Their defense showed the dominance that they had earlier this season that had them on top of their division for so long. Xavier Rhodes had a 100-yard interception for a touchdown and Cordarrelle Patterson had a 104-yard kick return for a touchdown. Sam Bradford completed for 71 percent of his passes for 169 yards, a touchdown and didn’t throw an interception. They had a combined 72 rushing yards and a touchdown. They are travelling to Detroit for a big NFC North game on Thanksgiving.
13. Baltimore Ravens (5-5; Prev. 13)
The Ravens played a tough game on Sunday against one of the best teams in the league. In the first half, the Ravens looked like they could win the game, but the second half killed them. They were able to restrict Ezekiel Elliott in a way that no one else has been able to do since week one. Steve Smith played really well and was fighting the entire game. Joe Flacco didn’t have a bad game, throwing for 269 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions, but it wasn’t enough to win the game. This week the Ravens are welcoming the Bengals to town this week and they need the win as they are now tied with the Steelers for first place in the division.
14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (5-5; Prev. 17)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers played a pretty good game against the Kansas City Chiefs and are now only a game behind the Atlanta Falcons. Jameis Winston was able to throw for 331 yards and a touchdown. Doug Martin looked good for his first game as the main running back since week two. He only rushed for 63 yards, but he also caught three passes for 42 yards. Their defense was able to force two turnovers and lead this team to a big win. They have a tough game this week as the Seahawks are coming to Tampa Bay.
15. Philadelphia Eagles (5-5; Prev. 11)
The Philadelphia Eagles lost a big game against the Seattle Seahawks and are now four games behind the Dallas Cowboys for the division lead and are a game and a half behind the Washington Redskins for the second wildcard spot. Carson Wentz didn’t have a good game against the Seahawks. He threw for two touchdowns, but only 218 yards and two interceptions. Their rushing attack was able to get 113 combined yards, but that was thanks to Darren Sproles and Ryan Mathews going down with injuries. They had a hard time containing Russell Wilson and Jimmy Graham and need to turn things around to get back into playoff contention. They should be able to do that this week as the Green Bay Packers are coming to town for a Monday night matchup.
16. Pittsburgh Steelers (5-5; Prev. 15)
The Pittsburgh Steelers won against the Browns in a game that wasn’t really close. Their defense only gave up nine points and held the Browns out of Pittsburgh territory for the entire first half of the game. Le’Veon Bell rushed for 146 yards and a touchdown and could have had an even bigger game if they really wanted to. Ben Roethlisberger only threw for 167 yards and no touchdowns, but he didn’t need to have a big game. This week, they are travelling to Indianapolis for a big Thanksgiving game between two AFC contenders.
17. Miami Dolphins (6-4; Prev. 19)
The Dolphins have won their fifth straight game and are now one game behind both wildcard spots. Their defense held the Rams to ten points and didn’t let Jared Goff have a very good first game. Ryan Tannehill only threw for 172 yards, two touchdowns, but had an interception as well. Jay Ajayi had a bit of a down day, running for 77 yards and no touchdowns, but given the fact that the Rams defensive line is really good, it is understandable. They have the 49ers coming to town this week and they should be able to pull out the victory to continue their win streak.
18. San Diego Chargers (4-6; Prev. 21)
The San Diego Chargers had a bye this week and two of the three teams ahead of them won. They are now four games back from the leading Oakland Raiders and three games behind the Broncos and Chiefs. It is going to be hard for them to make the playoffs and probably need to win all six of their remaining games starting this week against the Texans in Houston.
19. Buffalo Bills (5-5; Prev. 22)
The Buffalo Bills won a close game against the Cincinnati Bengals. Tyrod Taylor threw for only 166 yards and an interception, but given their offensive weapons, that isn’t too surprising. They were able to rush for a combined 183 yards and a touchdown, so they really didn’t need to throw the football, given how good they were running it. Their defense was also able to force two interceptions and need to keep playing well if they want to pull an upset and sneak into the playoffs. They should be able to get another win this week as the Jaguars are coming to Buffalo.
20. Indianapolis Colts (5-5; Prev. 24)
The Indianapolis Colts were able to get a much needed win against their division rivals, the Tennessee Titans, but at a cost. Andrew Luck was placed under concussion protocol and if he misses any time, that could be devastating for a team that is only a game out of first place in the AFC South. He had a decent game on Sunday against the Titans, completing 54 percent of his passes for 262 yards and two touchdowns. Their defense did a good job containing the Tennessee run game in check, only allowing 70 yards to DeMarco Murray and if they had played like that all season, they might be in a better position. They have a tough game this week as the Steelers are coming to town for Thanksgiving, but if Scott Tolzien is starting, it might not be a good game for the Colts.
21. Arizona Cardinals (4-5-1; Prev. 18)
The Cardinals lost another game and are now three games behind the Seahawks and two games behind the Redskins for a wildcard spot. They are not playing good on either side of the ball, with the exception of David Johnson. Johnson was able to rush for 103 yards and a touchdown and was the only bright spot of their offense. Carson Palmer was able to throw for 198 yards and had two touchdowns, but also had two interceptions, one was returned for a touchdown. Their defense did a pretty good job against the Vikings, but it wasn’t enough, thanks to their offense. They have a tough game this week as they go to Atlanta for a game with the Falcons.
22. Tennessee Titans (5-6; Prev. 20)
The Titans lost a must win game against the Colts and have to do a lot in order to make the playoffs now. This game looked really ugly early as the Colts scored 21 points in the first 21 minutes of the game and the Titans couldn’t score at all in that period. They were able to get two touchdowns in the game, both passes from Marcus Mariota, but it wasn’t enough to complete the comeback. DeMarco Murray had a bad game by his standards, only rushing for 70 yards, but he was able to catch three passes for nine yards and a touchdown as well. Their defense was able to force an interception and sack Andrew Luck twice, but that was about it. Next up, they are travelling to Chicago for a game that they need to win and should win.
23. Green Bay Packers (4-6; Prev. 16)
The Green Bay Packers lost another game on Sunday and it wasn’t even close. They have now lost five of their last six games and it doesn’t look like this team will be able to turn their season around. Aaron Rodgers was able to throw for 351 yards and three touchdowns and was the leading rusher for this team with 33 yards. Their defense couldn’t do anything, giving up three passing touchdowns and three rushing touchdowns. They still have a chance for the playoffs, but with how they are playing, it is hard to imagine them making it. This week they have another tough game as they go to Philadelphia for a big NFC game.
24. Carolina Panthers (4-6; Prev. 26)
The Carolina Panthers won a must win game last Thursday against the New Orleans Saints. They didn’t have a big game offensively, but were still able to get the win. Cam Newton only threw for 192 yards and a touchdown and they only had 50 rushing yards and another touchdown. Their defense let the Saints almost comeback and win, but held on and were able to close the game out. The loss of all-pro linebacker Luke Kuechly might be hard for this team to overcome, especially if he is out more than a game. They have a tough game this week when they go to Oakland to face a team that has only lost two games so far this season.
25. New Orleans Saints (4-6; Prev. 23)
The New Orleans Saints lost a close game against the Carolina Panther in a game that they needed to win, especially with the Falcons on a bye. Drew Brees didn’t have a bad game, throwing for 285 yards, two touchdowns and only one interception, but also had a fumble. Their running game combined for 107 yards, but didn’t have any touchdowns. Most of their offensive production came in a failed fourth quarter comeback. Defensively, they held the Panthers offense in check, giving up only 192 passing yards and fifty rushing yards, but gave up two touchdowns. They have the Rams coming to town this week in a game that they must win or their playoff hopes will pretty much be gone.
26. Cincinnati Bengals (3-6-1; Prev. 25)
The Cincinnati Bengals have lost another game, this time against the Buffalo Bills and haven’t won a game since October 23rd against the Browns. They only have one game left against a team with a losing record and it looks like they lost their best player, AJ Green, potentially for the season. Andy Dalton was able to throw for 207 yards and a touchdown, but also had two interceptions. They did have 93 yards on the ground, but they also lost Giovani Bernard for the season with a torn ACL. The Bengals are visiting the Bengals this week in a tough game, given the injuries that the Bengals have had this week.
27. Los Angeles Rams (4-6; Prev. 27)
The debut for Jared Goff wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t as wonderful as Dak Prescott or Carson Wentz. He completed 55 percent of his passes for 134 yards with no touchdowns and no interceptions. Todd Gurley had one of his better games in the season, rushing 20 times for 76 yards and a touchdown. They need to get him going more, but it might be too late at this point. Their defense did a decent job, holding Jay Ajayi to 77 yards, but they need to play better with their offense. The Rams are going to New Orleans this week to face the Saints.
28. New York Jets (3-7; Prev. 28)
The Jets were on a bye this week and with the Patriots and Dolphins winning, it is nearly impossible for the Jets to make a comeback. There are still some things for this team to show, especially on offense. They have a tough game this week as they take on the New England Patriots.
29. Chicago Bears (2-8; Prev. 29)
The Chicago Bears had a good first half on Sunday against the Giants, but they ultimately allowed the Giants to make a comeback. Jay Cutler completed 57 percent of his passes for 252 yards, a touchdown, but had an interception as well. Jordan Howard was able to rush for 77 yards on 17 carries and should give some Bears fans hope. Their defense held the Giants to nine points in the first half, but gave up two touchdowns in the fourth quarter. This team has had a lot of bad luck this season and will have a lot to do in the offseason if they want to be relevant anytime soon.
30. Jacksonville Jaguars (2-8; Prev. 30)
The Jacksonville Jaguars lost another game this week, this time against the Detroit Lions. Blake Bortles is in the midst of his worst season as a pro and this past week wasn’t that much different. Bortles threw for 202 yards and two touchdowns, but had two interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown. TJ Yeldon injured his ankle and has had a bad season to this point either way. Their defense actually did a pretty good job because half of the Lions points came off of an interception return and a punt return, both for touchdowns. They are visiting the Buffalo Bills this week.
31. San Francisco 49ers (1-9; Prev. 31)
The 49ers played a tough game against one of the best teams in the NFL and lost. They didn’t have enough on defense to stop Tom Brady and their offensive attack. Their running game did an ok job, combined for 122 yards on 27 carries throughout the game and Colin Kaepernick was able to throw for 206 yards and two touchdowns. They didn’t have any turnovers on either side of the ball which is good for their offense, but bad for their defense. Although their offense was able to score two touchdowns, they would have really benefited from having a shorter field once or twice throughout the game. The 49ers are going to Miami next week for a game with another good AFC East team.
32. Cleveland Browns (0-11; Prev. 32)
The Browns are now winless through eleven weeks of the season and it doesn’t look like they will get a win anytime soon. They were unable to get into Pittsburgh territory until three minutes into the third quarter. Cody Kessler got knocked out with another concussion and the team as a whole looks really bad. They should have two top 20 picks in this upcoming draft and they need to do a good job at rebuilding unless they want this to happen again next season. This week, they are welcoming the Giants to town and it is unlikely that the Browns will get their first win in that game.
Since there are so many teams in the middle of the pack at this point in the season, the ATP mock drafts will have at least fifteen teams until the end of the season.
Buffalo Bills @ Cincinnati Bengals
The Buffalo Bills are going to Cincinnati for a game that could eliminate one of these teams from the AFC playoff picture. The Bills are coming off of a bye, but lost three straight for the break. The Bengals are coming off of a tough loss against the Giants. The key for the Bills is to force turnovers against the Bengals. If they can give Tyrod Taylor and the Bills running game some good field position, then they have a good chance to win. The key for the Bengals is to get the ball to AJ Green and Tyler Eifert. If they are able to get the ball to those two, then the running game will open up and the Bengals will win. This should be a close game, but the Bengals should win.
BUF 23 – 25 CIN
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Cleveland Browns
The Pittsburgh Steelers are on a four game losing streak and are facing the best team to get them to turn everything around, the Cleveland Browns. The Steelers are better in nearly every statistical category and finally seem to have a healthy Ben Roethlisberger. The Browns made an interesting switch to Josh McCown last week and it did not pay off for them. The key for the Steelers is to run the ball as much as they can. The Browns are allowing 143.7 yards per game on the ground so it should be pretty easy for one of the best running backs in the league to take advantage of that. The key for the Browns is to attack the Steelers secondary. The Steelers secondary is their weak point and Terrell Pryor and Corey Coleman should be able to beat them a couple of times. The Browns have a chance in this game, but it is unlikely and the Steelers should be able to win.
PIT 35 – 20 CLE
Baltimore Ravens @ Dallas Cowboys
This should be one of the better matchups of the weekend with the Ravens and their defense visiting the Cowboys and their offense. The Ravens have one of the best rushing defenses in the NFL and have only given up 71.3 rushing yards per game. The Dallas Cowboys have the best rushing attack in the NFL, averaging 161 rushing yards per game. The key to this game is who is going to win the running battle. The Cowboys have been able to run on every team this season and the more that Ezekiel Elliott plays, the harder it is to stop him. Ultimately, the Dallas offensive line and Ezekiel Elliot will be too much for the Ravens and will lead them to their ninth straight victory.
BAL 19 – 23 DAL
Jacksonville Jaguars @ Detroit Lions
The Jaguars are going to Detroit for a big game against the Lions. The Jaguars season is pretty much over, but there is still a chance if they are able to win the rest of their games. The Lions are coming off of a bye and are now in first place for the NFC North. The key for the Jaguars is to attack the Detroit secondary. The Lions are allowing 260 yards through the air per game and Jacksonville has a good receiving corps to take advantage of that defense. The key for the Lions is to run the ball effectively. The Jaguars have one of the worst rushing defenses in the league and Theo Riddick should be able to have a pretty good game. The Lions are the better team and should win this one.
JAX 22 – 27 DET
Tennessee Titans @ Indianapolis Colts
The Titans are travelling to Indianapolis this week for a huge AFC South game. The winner of this game has the best chance to overtake the Texans for the division. The Titans are coming off of their best win of the season and need to continue their momentum. The Colts are coming off of a bye week and were hopefully able to get Andrew Luck healthy and figure out a way to get him some protection. The key for the Titans is to continue to give the ball to DeMarco Murray. They are averaging 145 yards on the ground per game and that is what has got them five wins so far and that is the strength of their team. The key for the Colts is to keep Luck protected. They need Luck to play his best game to keep up with the Titans offense. It is hard to imagine the Colts doing that and should lead to a Titans victory.
TEN 33 – 27 IND
Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Kansas City Chiefs
The Buccaneers are going to Kansas City this week. The Buccaneers are a game and a half behind the Falcons and they need to win this game with Atlanta on a bye. The Kansas City Chiefs are on a five game winning streak and are tied with the Raiders for the division lead. The key for the Buccaneers is to run the ball effectively with Doug Martin. The Chiefs have a good defense, but they are giving up 121.7 rushing yards per game and should be what allows the Buccaneers to gain an advantage. The key for the Chiefs is to get to Jameis Winston and force a few turnovers. If he has to play for behind, then there is a good chance that he will give the ball up to the Chiefs. The Chiefs defense should be able to beat the Buccaneers offense and lead the Chiefs to a win.
TB 21 – 24 KC
Arizona Cardinals @ Minnesota Vikings
The Cardinals and Vikings are facing off in Minnesota in a game that could have huge NFC implications. The Cardinals won a close game last week and are two games behind the Seahawks. The Vikings are on a four game losing streak and are tied for first in the NFC North with the Lions, but Detroit has the tiebreaker right now. The key for the Cardinals is to run the ball with David Johnson. The Vikings have had a decent run defense, but the less that the Cardinals turn the ball over, the less chance for them to lose. The key for the Vikings is to get as many turnovers as possible. Their defense is the main reason that they have won five games and that is the only thing that is going to cause them to win again. The Vikings will eventually win another game, but it won’t be this one and the Cardinals will win.
ARI 23 – 17 MIN
Chicago Bears @ New York Giants
The Chicago Bears are visiting the New York Giants this Sunday. The Bears have lost four of their last five games and just lost their best player, Alshon Jeffrey, for the next four games. The Giants have won four straight and are in good position for the first wildcard spot in the NFC. They key for the Bears it to get to Eli Manning as often as possible. The Giants running game has been really poor and if they are forced to do so, then it is going to be hard for them to win. The key for the Giants is to distribute the ball evenly to all of their receivers. It would be very difficult Chicago’s secondary to contain all of the Giants weapons through the air and will be the reason that the Giants win their fifth straight game.
CHI 14 – 20 NYG
Miami Dolphins @ Los Angeles Rams
The Dolphins are traveling to Los Angeles for the debut of Jared Goff. The Dolphins have been one of the better teams in the NFL recently because of their running game and their defensive front. The Rams are finally making the shift to Goff, but it is probably too little too late for this team. The key for the Dolphins is to get to Goff as much as possible. There is a reason he hasn't started to this point and the Dolphins defense should be able to shake him up and force him to make mistakes. The key for the Rams is to give the ball to Gurley. He hasn't been utilized as much as he was last season, but with a rookie quarterback that everyone has questions about, it might be easier to focus on the run. The Dolphins should win this game in what should be a good defensive battle.
MIA 17 – 10 LA
Philadelphia Eagles @ Seattle Seahawks
The Philadelphia Eagles are going to Seattle for a big NFC defensive matchup. The Eagles are currently fourth in their division, but they are good enough on defense to fight for one of the playoff spots. The Seahawks are coming off of their biggest win of the season. The key for the Eagles is to get to Russell Wilson early. The Eagles defensive line is probably the best one that the Seahawks will face all season and their offensive line is really bad. If they don’t protect Wilson in this game, then they could lose their season. The key for the Seahawks is to stop the run and make Carson Wentz beat them. The Eagles have a poor receiving squad and the Seahawks have the best secondary so it is hard to imagine the Eagles being able to throw for a lot of yards and touchdowns. This is a bad matchup for the Seahawks and the Eagles should win this one.
PHI 23 – 19 SEA
New England Patriots @ San Francisco 49ers
The New England Patriots are going to San Francisco for a game with the 49ers. The Patriots are coming off of a loss to a really good Seattle team and the 49ers haven’t won a game since week one, but played hard against the Cardinals last week. The key for the Patriots is to run the ball. The 49ers have the worst rushing defense in the NFL and it is easy to take advantage of them. The key for the 49ers is to keep the New England defensive front on their toes with a lot of read option plays. In the Patriot s first loss, the Bills were able to do that and made it hard for the Patriots to stop. If the 49ers can duplicate that with Colin Kaepernick and Carlos Hyde, there might be a chance for them to pull the upset. It is hard to imagine the Patriots having a two game losing streak so they should win this game rather easily.
NE 35 – 17 SF
Green Bay Packers @ Washington Redskins
Washington is welcoming the Packers this week in a game that could shape up the playoff picture a little bit more. The Packers are in third place in their division and have lost three straight games. The Redskins were able to win last week against the Vikings and are now slotted in the second wildcard spot. Both teams need this win for the sake of their season and should be interesting to watch. The key for the Packers is for Aaron Rodgers to not miss as many big throws. Their defense is going to have a hard time keeping up with the Redskins and Rodgers needs to be on top of their game if they want to win. The key for the Redskins is to force the Packers to run the football. Green Bay has had troubling running the ball and it probably won’t change anytime soon, even with the addition of Christine Michael. It is hard to think of the Packers winning right now, given how they have played recently, so the Redskins should win.
GB 24 – 27 WAS
Houston Texans vs. Oakland Raiders (Mexico City)
The Texans and Raiders are meeting in Mexico City for a game between two of the better AFC teams. The Texans have won three of their last four games, but all of their wins have been fairly close games. Oakland has won their last three games and has looked rather impressive in all of the games. The key for the Texans is to run the ball and control the football. Brock Osweiler hasn’t looked good and if they get into a shootout with the Raiders, it is unlikely that they will win. The key for the Raiders is to get to Osweiler as often as possible. If they are able to shake him up a bit, then he might make a few mistakes and make it easier on Derek Carr and the Raiders offense. The Raiders offense might be too good for the Texans and they should return to Oakland with the win.
HOU 20 – 31 OAK
Since there are so many teams in the middle of the pack at this point in the season, the ATP mock drafts will have fifteen teams until the end of the season.
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