By Chris Schisler
It’s Thursday afternoon and that means it’s time to make my picks for the NFL week. Last week I got 10 games right giving me a total record of 39-25. Going into the fifth week of the season I feel confident that I can at least maintain this rate of picking winners. Each game will get a nugget of analysis. The winners will be highlighted in purple:
NFL WEEK 5
Rams @ Seahawks
I haven’t gotten a game wrong on Thursday night all season. I’m bound to have that streak broken eventually and this game could go either way. Despite the Seahawks being at home, I have the Rams in this one. Russell Wilson will have to do too much in this one and Seattle’s offensive line will struggle against the Rams front. Look for a big game from Aaron Donald in this one.
Jets @ Falcons
The Jets beat the Titans last week. Are they a good team? Not really, but things are moving in the right direction. Corey Davis was a great free agent signing for New York and Zack Wilson has had just enough ups to go with his downs as a rookie quarterback for the Jets to have some hope. By the way, the Falcons have never met a lead they couldn’t lose.
Patriots @ Texans
The Patriots are a good football team. We learned that when they went toe to toe with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week. The Patriots have a step or two to get back to being a contender, but they should wipe the floor with the Texans. Davis Mills is bad and we all saw this coming.
Lions @ Vikings
The Lions gave the Ravens a fight, but it was in a game where the Ravens hurt themselves. The Lions have given me no reason to pick them in a game this season. Even in a close game, they’ll find a way to lose. The Vikings just gave the Browns a scare and went to overtime with the Bengals. Give me Kirk Cousins to go off against a very vulnerable secondary.
Eagles @ Panthers
I want to pick the Eagles so badly here. They’re a fun team because I love me some Jalen Hurts and Devonta Smith is an exciting rookie. The Panthers have been playing good football overall. The Eagles still haven’t shown me who they are. Give me the Panthers’ defense to come up in this game, with enough from Sam Darnold to get the win.
Saints @ Washington Football Team
I don’t want to pick this game. The Washington defense has been awful. The Saints have been completely inconsistent. Don’t make me pick it. Fine, I’ll go with the home team. This is a game I would stay away from coming from a betting perspective. You never know if you’re getting the Saints team that beat the Packers and Patriots into the ground or the team that lost to the Giants and the Panthers.
Titans @ Jaguars
The Tennessee Titans have issues. They just lost to the Jets, in overtime… yeah things aren’t good. Still, the Jaguars are a mess. Urban Meyer is looking like he’s as much of a bad NFL coach as he is a first-class creep. Tennessee should put up too many points for Jacksonville to keep up with. Distracted or not, the Jaguars are a bad team. I have no problem publishing the fact that I have no respect for Urban Meyer.
Dolphins @ Buccaneers
The battle of Florida goes to the defending Super Bowl champions. The Buccaneers defense should get this one for Tampa Bay. Tom Brady just needs to be a game manager to win this one. The Dolphins have only looked compelling for one game this season and are rightfully without a win.
Packers @ Bengals
This is going to be a good game. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers are feeling it and the Bengals actually became a decent team. Joe Burrow may make this a barnburner. In the end, it’s hard to go against Rodgers.
Broncos @ Steelers
If Teddy Bridgewater returns to the starting quarterback position, the Broncos should put up enough points to win this game. The Steelers’ offense has been awful this season. Denver needs to put up 24. That should do it. It’s in Pittsburgh and the Broncos offensive line is going to have a tough day. This isn’t a stone-cold lock, but this Steelers team just isn’t it this year.
Bears @ Raiders
The Raiders woke up too late in the second half of their second Monday Night Football appearance. I want to see this game. Justin Fields has my attention as the Bears starting quarterback. I think the Raiders’ offense bounces back and the Bears won’t be able to protect their rookie quarterback enough to keep up on the scoreboard.
Browns @ Chargers
This is a good game. The Chargers are undefeated and at home, hosting a Browns team that has to go out to the west coast after a tough week 4 game. The Chargers’ offense is the talk of the NFL, but their defense is the reason they’re winning this game.
Giants @ Cowboys
I never really feel comfortable saying this, but the Cowboys may be a good team. The defense is so much better than it was a year ago it’s not funny. The offense is capable of putting up points in a hurry. The Giants beat the Saints on the road. I’m not buying into Daniel Jones getting two straight road wins though, give me Dallas.
49ers @ Cardinals
The Cardinals are awesome this year. Kyler Murray is playing at an MVP level, the defense is getting the job done and this team has talent on top of talent. The 49ers have proven to be a tough out but the Cardinals have more going for them here.
Bills @ Chiefs
The Ravens flipped the script on the Chiefs and Kansas City has problems on defense. I could see this as a big win for the Bills, yet until I see the script flipped for Buffalo, Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid own this matchup.
Your Baltimore Ravens close out NFL Week 5:
Colts @ Ravens
The Ravens don’t have their toughest opponent of the year here. The only way this game is interesting is if the Ravens make it harder than it has to be. This is a game where the Ravens have to move forward and show their most convincing and complete performance of the year. The Colts don’t have an answer for Lamar Jackson and the Colts offense won’t keep up in front of a primetime Baltimore crowd, with Don Martindale calling the shots.
There you have it. A pick from every game on the NFL slate this weekend.