2016 NFL Predictions Week Seven
What do you do if you are Jerry Jones? If it is Dak Prescott or Tony Romo, a decision will come probably on Tuesday or Wednesday at the latest. This will be the biggest meeting of high-ranking officials since the Tehran Conference. The chemistry between Prescott and the Cowboys has led Dallas to their best start (5-1) since 2014. Replacing him will dull that spark and will take away the QB option elements that defenses so far have focused on this season.
Bye: Cowboys, Panthers
Bears @ Packers: With injuries in the backfield, the Packers can hope that Knile Davis, (who was acquired through a trade on Tuesday), Don Jackson (undrafted rookie who will take his first professional snaps on Thursday), and Randall Cobb and Ty Montgomery can help in the run game. After allowing a combined 171 rushing yards in the first four games, the Green Bay defense were kicked in the mouth allowing 191 yards last week. On a short week, we'll see how well the Packers will defend Chicago's run game and if the offense can find success in the red zone.
Giants @ Rams: Todd Gurley hasn't rushed for 100 yards for the Rams since December, when they were still in St. Louis. It will be a tough task to get to that mark as the Giants are allowing 3.5 yards per rush attempt. It will take a group effort for The City of Angels to defend Odell Beckham Jr. after burning Baltimore last week for 222 receiving yards and two scores. The Rams look to get a boost on defense with the return of Robert Quinn while Rashad Jennings for the Giants should be getting more touches running the ball.
Browns @ Bengals: This could be the ultimate trap game only if the Bengals can't find any success pounding the rock. With Cleveland allowing 118 rush yards per game, it will be hard for Cincy to just leave Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard aside.
Redskins @ Lions: Can Washington keep their win streak alive? As well as Kirk Cousins and Matthew Stafford have been playing, the game will come down to defense and who would avoid making the first mistake. After the scare when Cousins had that ill-advised interception that kept the Eagles in the game, I think that keeps him in check.
Raiders @ Jaguars: Oddly enough, the Raiders are 3-0 on the road this year with better numbers in scoring and total yards allowed as opposed to their home games. If the Jaguars continue to struggle early as they did last week, it will be difficult to come back and keep it close with Derek Carr and their top-10 rated scoring offense. Oakland is still allowing the most total yards so it is inexcusable if Blake Bortles can't drive them down the field.
Saints @ Chiefs: Dating back to last season, Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters has recorded more interceptions (13) than the entire New Orleans Saints team (11). It's just been another day at the office not only for Peters but for the defense who held Oakland to 10 points last week in their first road win of the season. In home games so far, with Drew Brees visiting, the opponent has averaged 15 points per game at Arrowhead.
Bills @ Dolphins: Shaq Lawson will look to play in his first career game after having shoulder surgery that has forced him to miss all of training camp up until last week. Even if it is just a rotational role for now, the defense shouldn't have a problem against Miami and their 31-ranked rush defense. The possible absence of LeSean McCoy could pose a problem early.
Ravens @ Jets: After an interesting turn of events, Geno Smith will start under center for the Jets. It shouldn't be so bad against the Ravens as they will be without Terrell Suggs. Baltimore is allowing the least rushing yards per game which won't be fun for Matt Forte. In what will be a close game, Joe Flacco will get it done.
Vikings @ Eagles: A defensive grudge match in Philadelphia with the undefeated Vikings facing off against Carson Wentz and the Eagles. How can Philadelphia right the ship and avoid their third straight loss while Dallas will be waiting for them next Sunday night? It will be a start but they can lend help to right tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai in pass protection.
Colts @ Titans: Tennessee has been playing good football lately which could pose a problem for the Colts if they don't show any improvement on their end. As bad as the offensive line was last week for Cleveland, Indianapolis has allowed 23 sacks, which is most in the league. Andrew Luck would need another 100-yd performance by Frank Gore for them to have a shot.
Chargers @ Falcons: A rough end last week at the Clink for Atlanta but now they move on. Did you know: Matt Ryan has the highest quarterback rating and fourth highest completion percentage this season. It has been that kind of play that the Falcons can lean on and hope it will get them far into the playoffs. The fourteenth rated defense in San Diego will have a tough time defending the Falcons highest ranking offense.
Buccaneers @ 49ers: In terms of offensive yards per play, the Buccaneers and Niners are your two lowest ranked teams in that category. This could be a chance where we get to see some explosive plays out of the quarterbacks. Tampa Bay certainly isn't the Bills defense and San Francisco are allowing the most rushing yards this season.
Patriots @ Steelers: The 2016 season has been a roller coaster for the Steelers. With Big Ben out for two-six weeks, the Steelers could be staring at Lex Luthor's Drop of Doom in the face. With Landry Jones the next man up, a safe game plan will look to be the call but I don't expect many points to be scored for the offense. After a strong three game stretch running the ball at the beginning of the season, New England hasn't rushed for over 100 yards the past three games. Look for a big performance in the Patriots run game after the Steelers gave up 222 yards on the ground last week.
Seahawks @ Cardinals: Both teams haven't been playing spectacular but it should make for an entertaining game. David Johnson is looking like the best running back in the league and Russell Wilson is having himself quite a season. Which defense will come out on top with the game-defining play?
Texans @ Broncos: Brock Osweiler returns to Mile High Stadium after spending the last four seasons with the Broncos. His play in the last 3 minutes of regulation last week hopefully gives him confidence against the 7th rated Denver defense. Gary Kubiak will also make his return after a health scare and hopes to get the team out of its two-game skid.
2016 Record: 53-39
Last week: 9-6