I had a much better week predicting games in week 4 than the previous two weeks. Last week I predicted 10 out of 16 games correctly (62.5%). My total is now 37 out of 63, giving me a 58.7% accuracy rate. I’m going to get it above 60% this week, I can feel it.
We’re starting to get a bit of a feel for each team and what’s hurting or helping them. We know the Patriots defense is hurting them, while we know the Rams offense is helping them. There’s still a lot of time left for each team to get things together, but I think we’re almost to the point where we know what to expect from every team throughout the rest of the season. Here are my picks for week 5.
Patriots vs Buccaneers (Thursday)
The Patriots are surprisingly 2-2. Their defense has had all sorts of troubles this season, which is why I think the Buccaneers will have a good day offensively. Despite the good offense the Buccaneers might have, I think the Patriots come away with a win. I just can’t see the Patriots moving to 2-3. The Bucs offense plays well, but Brady plays better.
The Bills are nice surprise this season. Sitting at 3-1 after their victory over the Falcons last week, the Bills are showing some consistency on both sides of the ball. The offense isn’t scoring a ton of points, but they don’t have to because the defense is playing very well. They’ve allowed the least amount of points per game so far (13.5). The Bengals finally won their first game of the season, but it came against the Browns. I think this game starts another losing streak for the Bengals.
The Jets won their second game of the season by beating the Jaguars. The Jets defense has played a lot better the past couple weeks. I don’t feel like the Browns are making any improvements. Much to my surprise, the Jets walk away with another win, giving them their third of the season.
After the offensive showing the Panthers had, I’d like to think they can keep it going. I think this game could go either way. I like what the Panthers have on offense more than what the Lions have. This is probably a close one, but Cam leads the Panthers to victory.
The 49ers are winless, and I think it stays that way for another week. The Colts haven’t been good this year, but neither have the 49ers. The Colts are 1-3, but they were close to a second win a couple weeks back. I like the Colts body of work just a little more than the 49ers.
Both teams were ugly last week. The Titans were pounded by the Texans, while the Dolphins were shut out by the Saints. The Dolphins have been awful the past two weeks, scoring a total of 6 points. The Titans were bad last week, but not that bad. Miami continues to struggle, while the Titans get back on track.
The battle of the 0-4’s! The Giants offense has been terrible, and I think that continues. The Chargers defense is tied for 3rd in the league in team sacks with 12. Joey Bosa and the Chargers defensive line will be giving Eli Manning fits all game long. They do enough to allow Phillip Rivers to get this team a win.
Battle of the birds! I think the Eagles have surprised a lot of people. They’re 2nd in total yards and 7th in points per game. Arizona has a tough defense to play against, but their offense isn’t doing so well. While they do rank 8th in total yards, they only rank 22nd in points per game. The Eagles continue their hot streak on offense, while the Cardinals still struggle to find anything.
Even though the Jaguars have had some good performances this season, they’ve also had some bad ones. They’re coming off a loss to the Jets, and now prepare to face a Steelers defense that ranks 2nd in points allowed per game (14.8). Dealing with Antonio Brown and company on offense while facing a tough defense is not a good combo.
Despite the offensive explosion the Seahawks had last week against the Colts, their offense hasn’t looked great overall. The Seattle defense still ranks in the top 10 in points allowed, but they don’t seem to be what we’re used to seeing. This week they face the team leading the NFL in points per game (35.5). Jared Goff and Todd Gurley just destroyed the Dallas defense, and while the Seahawks are much better defensively, I think they still score enough to outlast Seattle.
The Raiders will be without Derek Carr in this one because of a recent back injury. Even though they’ll be without Carr, I think they can get the job done this week. The Ravens have been terrible on offense this year, scoring just 15 points per game. I don’t see the Ravens offense getting better any time soon, so the Raiders won’t have to score much to win.
The Cowboys offense has been good the past few weeks, but their defense is holding them back. They allowed 35 points to Jared Goff and company, and now have to play Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers doesn’t have the running game of the Rams, but he’s a much better quarterback than Jared Goff. I think Aaron Rodgers is going to shred this Dallas defense to pieces.
Chiefs vs Texans (Sunday Night)
The Chiefs are the only remaining undefeated team. I’m picking them to stay undefeated this week also. The Texans put on an offensive show last week, but that was against a Titans defense that ranks 30th in the league in points allowed per game (31.5). Deshaun Watson may have thrown 5 TD’s against the Titans, but he won’t against the Chiefs. This defense allows just 19.2 points per game. Things will be much tougher for Watson this week.
Vikings vs Bears (Monday Night)
Mitchell Trubisky will be making his first start in this game. I think he’ll play well, and he’ll be a better option for the Bears long term, but it will be tough for him this week. He’s going against a Vikings defense that’s allowing 19 points per game. That’s one heck of a defense to be playing against in his first NFL start. We’ll see flashes of why Trubisky was selected so high, but the Vikings defense will make things tough on him.