Am I proud of going 12-3 last week? You’re damn right I am. Definitely my best week for predictions which tells me that certain teams are returning to normality and I am adjusting to the surprises. The Patriots are back in full swing and the defense is stepping up. The Bills continue to surprise and dominate and stay neck and neck with the Pats in the AFC East. The Eagles are on a hot streak that you are crazy to believe will end. With all of that and more in mind, let’s break down what to expect this week.
MIA @ BAL
This is another Thursday Night dud. I’m probably going to just catch the highlights for this one on Friday because while I believe it has the makings of possibly a close game, I thoroughly expect it not to be. Miami is 4-2 and their defense is playing great football. The offense was lucky that Cutler was hurt and played Moore this past week and if they are smart they will keep Moore under center. Baltimore has a record that doesn’t show how trashy they are playing this year. Ultimately, I expect a fairly easy road victory for Miami, 30-17.
MIN @ CLE
I will repeat the formula of not bothering to write much about the Browns or their games until they show they aren’t the very worst team in football. The Vikings will spank them up and down the field on both sides of the ball and will walk away with a win, 34-10.
OAK @ BUF
Outside of watching the Patriots this Sunday, this is the game I look forward to the most. Oakland just served Kansas City their second loss in a row. Now I understand that I already said maybe they got too many chances to score at the end of the game but look at Carr’s performance on top of the clutch runs that gained very valuable first downs and the defense’s ability to slow the Chiefs down even if it was only a bit. On the other hand, Buffalo has been playing very well and just managed a late comeback last week. They’ve also got a victory over the Falcons in their back pocket and I think it’s time to take Buffalo seriously. This game will not surprise me in any outcome but I have to give this to the team I feel is ultimately stronger for the length of the season. Oakland will win on the road in a very tight match, 24-21.
IND @ CIN
The records of these teams make this look like a bad game but I think it’ll be interesting to watch. The Bengals offense has been so lackluster all season but their defense has done as much as you can ask of a defense that gets no points put up as support by their quarterback. On the other side, the Colts defense has played poorly overall and their offensive line last week could’ve just stayed on the bench. If I’m Chuck Pagano, I am focusing SOLELY on the front line protecting Brissett so that he can put holes in the Bengals defense and get points on the board. I will take a Colts road victory, 20-17.
LAC @ NE
The Chargers have won 3 straight games now including one of their division rivals the Denver Broncos. Their defense is tuning up, the offense is improving, and they look good. Their winning streak ends at Gillette stadium. The Patriots defense has struggled this year in a scary way for fans. They showed maturity and major improvement in the Super Bowl rematch against the Atlanta Falcons. There is no version of this world where the Chargers defense can stop Tom Brady and his weapons from outscoring what LA’s offense can manage against a defense that just held the Falcons to a single touchdown. This will be an upsetting day for Chargers fans (all three of you.) Pats win at home, 35-20.
CHI @ NO
I think this will be a good game. I’m not just jumping on a Bears bandwagon because of the absolute spanking they laid down on the Panthers but they’ve been better this season than in recent years. New Orleans struggled early but has overcome those issues and improved to a performance more familiar to the past. I see the Bears playing well but I don’t think it’s quite enough to ultimately outplay the Saints. New Orleans wins at home, 28-20.
ATL @ NYJ
I think we all saw just how bad the Falcons played in New England. Their first touchdown came in the 4th quarter. They will have to play better in New York. The Jets have played decent in a few games but overall they aren’t great and they certainly aren’t the Patriots but they have a lot to play for. They are in dead last in the AFC East right now and if they want to stay even in the talk of playoffs, they need this home win. Sadly for Jets fans, I don’t see it happening. The Falcons MUST be furious after last week and have so much to prove. Atlanta wins on the road, 35-24.
SF @ PHI
I mean do you really need me to tell you how this is going to go? Philadelphia holds the absolute best record in the NFL and deservedly so. That play where Wentz dug himself out of a pile to run for the first down is mesmerizing. This guy wants to lead this franchise for years to come and get them a Super Bowl ring. The Niners are a far cry from a legitimate team and will continue this losing streak. Eagles win a dominant outing at home, 42-14.
CAR @ TB
Carolina fans must be absolutely heartbroken after that crushing defeat at the hands of Chicago. Not only was it painful to watch, it was the realization that the Panthers have lost their former glory. They were once a team to fear and to watch heading into the playoffs. This year, they are wishy washy at best. The Bucs have their share of troubles but their defense can certainly play better than Chicago’s and their offense has play makers all around that just need to show up this week. I will choose a Tampa Bay home win, 24-13.
HOU @ SEA
This is going to be a damn good game and a true test not just for the revitalized offense of Houston but for the defense of Seattle. I am very excited to see Deshaun Watson try to put up his numbers and make his moves against the legion of boom. On the other hand, Seattle’s offense has been severely lacking this year. It’s just hard to watch sometimes. Their defense is what keeps them in games and honestly, they’re going to need an offense to win this one at home. Ultimately, I will take the gamble here and choose the rookie. Texans win a shocker on the road, 27-21.
DAL @ WAS
I know the Cowboys got a prety easy victory over the trash bag Niners but you have to realize they have serious talent on their squad. The Redskins also have some solid players and put up a decent fight against the league leading Eagles. I think this will be good way to see if Dallas is truly back to where they were a year ago and if the Redskins can manage to stay competitive in the NFC at all. I choose the Cowboys, 31-24.
PIT @ DET
Detroit really seems to have deflated lately. All that money for Stafford but it isn’t just up to him to win. The defense has to perform better than in recent showings if they are going to stay in the playoff hunt. The Steelers however, were the first team to take down the undefeated Chiefs and have been rolling since. They started off rocky and suffered a disgusting loss to Jacksonville but they’ve made corrections and they look good again. This game will come down to defenses and I honestly think the Lions defense is refreshed and ready to step up. Lions win at home, 35-30.
DEN @ KC
A few weeks ago this would’ve been a really good game but after seeing the Broncos get squished by Los Angeles and the Chiefs beaten by the Raiders and the Steelers, I think Kansas City is ready for vengeance. The Broncos sadly have just lost their touch and even though they may still play well overall this season, they will be beaten on the road this week. Chiefs win, 34-24.
There you have it. Week 8 will be entertaining, high scoring, and hopefully not that shocking. Thanks as always for reading. Don’t forget to share this post with your friends and check back on Tuesday for my recap and breakdown of what happened.