(Note: Now updated with Sunday predictions)
Saturday games will occur for the next three weeks, making the whole weekend full of football. The first two Saturday games could be blowouts easily, but one of the most important games this week is Saturday's ESPN night game. And that would be...Carolina
There are so many hot teams in the NFL right now, including the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have done an amazing job overcoming injuries, but their offense and defensive units are both functioning very well. If the Panthers contain Mike Vick this week, they should be able to beat a solid Falcons team. More importantly, they will move to 7-7, and have a much greater chance of locking up the wildcard position.Better Rookie QB vs. Rookie QBBen Roethlisberger
vs. Eli Manning
This is obviously my pick for the Steelers and the Giants game. The Steelers have the better defense, better offense, and the Giants haven't had any success with Eli Manning yet. This is a game that the Steelers should be able to jump out to an early lead in and run away with it.Washington
vs. San Francisco
The Redskins have been looking better lately and nearly pulled the huge upset over the Eagles. Although their season is over, they still have the ability to stay in football games. The 49'ers did win last week, but both of their wins are against the Cardinals.
And now, for Sunday's games...The record?
Baltimore vs. Indianapolis
With how good the Ravens defense has been over the years, they could actually be the team that Peyton Manning breaks the touchdown record on. Manning may have to play the same "control" game that he did against the Texans last week, but whatever he does should get them the win.
And now, the rest of the games...
Dallas vs. Philadelphia
The Eagles still need to win all of these games to get that home-field advantage. The Cowboys basically blew their playoff hopes with a loss last week to the Saints. Being at home, the Eagles should be able to dominate the Cowboys.Seattle
Not taking the Jets at home is a tough decision. I think the Seahawks can begin to build some momentum at the season closes and finish on top of their division. This is a big game for them, and I think that they can win if they don't have another "collapse" type game.Minnesota
Their are some very inconsistent teams in the NFL - the Saints, Cowboys, and Seahawks, and Rams. But the Vikings, despite their winning record, may take the cake on that. After the last play of the season caused their collapse last year, they are headed that way this year. If they can win this rather tough game on the road, they will be in good shape to win a wildcard even if they lose their final two games.Buffalo
The Bills are one of the hottest teams in the NFL, and the Bengals were as well before the Patriots beat them last week. Kitna will get a shot at controlling the Bengals again, but he'll have to do so against an excellent Bills defense that only gave up 17 yards of offense to the Browns last week. If the Bills offense doesn't have stupid turnovers, they should win.
Houston vs. Chicago
Both of these teams are nearly out of playoff contention, and whoever loses will basically be definitely out. Due to the Bears being at home and their defense, I'll take them to win.
Denver vs. Kansas City
The Bronco's collapse will continue as they meet the Chiefs. Believe it or not, the Chiefs are not eliminated yet. Their chances are next to nothing, as they'd have to hope the Ravens and Bronco's lose out, and they win out. Larry Johnson has been impressive and Plummer is making too many mistakes.
St. Louis vs. Arizona
I was about to pick the Rams, but I don't think Chris Chandler can do a lot of things with the offense. The Cardinals have been up and down, but I'll take them as an "upset" pick I suppose.
New Orleans vs. Tampa Bay
With the Panthers loss on Saturday, the Buccaneers are seeking the playoffs again. This is a game the Buccaneers should definitely win without question.
Jacksonville vs. Green Bay
The Jaguars are still very much in the race, but they will be facing Favre and the Packers at home in a game that will be less than 32 degrees. Green Bay can just about clinch the playoffs with a win here.San Diego
As much as it kills me to pick against the Browns, I'm doing so for the first time in about two and a half years. I know the Chargers will probably win, and I want to keep my losses column under 100 losses for the season.Tennessee
Billy Volek can do good things with the Titans offense. As long as their defense holds up, they should be able to beat the Raiders in a close game.New England
I won't say that this will definitely be a blowout, because the Dolphins have stayed in games with a lot of teams. However, being on Monday Night, the world champion Patriots will have the gameplan to dominated the Dolphins.Last Week's Record:
119-89Current Survivor Winning Streak:
7 games.Survivor History:
10 games(Tennessee over Miami in week one, New England over Arizona in week two, Seattle over San Francisco in week three, New England over Buffalo in week four, Indianapolis over Oakland in week five, Philadelphia over Carolina in week six, Denver over Cincinnati in week seven(lost), Seattle over Carolina in week eight, Seattle over San Francisco in week nine, New England over Buffalo in week ten, Philadelphia over Washington in week eleven, Indianapolis over Detroit in week twelve, Indianapolis over Tennessee in week thirteen, Indianapolis over Houston in week fourteen.)
My survivor winning streak has reached a season high at seven games. I'd love to make it seven this week, but there a lot of potential upsets this week. I have picked the Colts to win the last three weeks, but I can't take the risk against the Ravens. Instead, I'll take the New England Patriots to beat the Miami Dolphins on Monday Night.