Redskins vs. Bengals – Teams representing Washington and Cincinnati both travel to London this week for another morning game. There’s nothing like waking up hungover to find a morning football game that surprisingly looks competitive. The Bengals are looking to bring back their powerful offense with the addition of Tyler Eifert, potentially at 100%, for the first time this season. The 10 TD animal would love to spark the struggling offense against a Redskins D that could potentially be missing star player Josh Norman due to a concussion. So far, no coach has been fired this year after loosing in London; I don’t see the streak living on this week but I guess a boy can dream.
Prediction: Redskins win
Cardinals @ Panthers – A.K.A a game that sounded way better at the start of the year than it did going into Week 8. Could Carolina start to turn things around? Will Bruce Arians finally punish a player who isn’t performing well? Coaches like Arians are allowed to make bold claims and statements when they’re winning, but I imagine how long he can keep loosing and making bold statements before he’s on the hot seat. One team has to prevail, but its possible Arizona tries to tie a game for a second week in a row.
Prediction: Panthers win
Lions @ Texans – A big reason why this game is listed is because the Lions are quietly becoming a team to watch this year in the NFL. Although their identity was a huge question mark coming into the year, Matt Stafford has been able to lead the Lions to 4 – 3 early on. The most interesting aspect of this team is how close every game has been; the score differential in every game the Lions have played in have never been greater than a single possession (7 points maximum). That means they could either be 7-0 or 0-7. The Texans face a different scenario, as many fans and media personalities have expressed an increasing outrage towards the play of QB Brock Osweiler. To me, Quarterback play is a key indicator towards the outcome of this game.
Prediction: Lions win
Seahawks @ Saints – This game could be incredibly boring or it could be incredibly fun. The Seahawks play the residential “shootout” team in the NFL this week. The Saints could either rise above the Seahawks defense or sink below it. If they have the defense’s number on Sunday I’d expect a shootout, if they can’t get started I’d expect a boring game. Let’s face it, the Saints have a crappy enough defense where the Seahawks can start miraculously and randomly airing it out if they need to.
Prediction: Seahawks win
Patriots @ Bills – Arguably the most interesting game available this week, regardless of my fandom towards the Patriots. The Bills have been riding high so far in the season, collecting a couple divisional losses against Miami and New York but dominating the New England Patriots 16-0 on Week 4. Since Tom Brady has returned, the Patriots haven’t lost and don’t really look to be considering losing as an option. The team isn’t quite as fired-up and vengeance-filled as many expected, but they’re playing solid football all around. The storyline is there, and both teams are riding high. What’s to hate about this matchup?
Prediction: Patriots win
Packers @ Falcons – A.K.A. the “Identity Crisis of Best Quarterback” Game. Usually we’d say the best Quarterback spot belongs to Aaron Rodgers, but this year it belongs to Matt Ryan? Don’t be surprised if that narrative starts to fade away, not due to Matt Ryan but due to Falcons Offensive Coordinator’s historical narrative of a steady decrease of wins as each season progresses. Seriously, all his teams have success early on and then begin to lose often. Eventually, this Falcons squad will loose too. I’m convinced. It probably won’t happen this week, as the Packers passing defense doesn’t create much of a challenge for the Falcons offense.
Prediction: Falcons win
Eagles @ Cowboys – The two young success stories of the NFC East square off Monday night. The Eagles knocked down the only unbeaten team in the NFL last week; they could easily ride the high this week against Dallas. Dak Prescott could be playing for his starting spot, as it’s rumored Tony Romo could be coming back as the starter next week. The final storyline to look at is the tough Philly Defensive front 7 against the Cowboys offensive line and star rookie running back Ezekial Elliot. This could turn out to be the game of the week; it might even bring the NFL ratings back.
Prediction: Cowboys win