Thearon W. Henderson - Getty Images
I had an average performance in Week 5, putting together an 8-6 record to improve my overall record to 42-35. My average for the season in total is still rather disappointing, so I'll continue working on that with my Week 6 picks.
|Week 6 Games||Explanation||Pick|
|vs.||Steelers to Survive Without Troy: Except for an unusual game against the Detroit Lions, the Titans have been blown out week in and week out. The Steelers have not put forth a complete game this year, though, and they'll be without Troy Polamalu again. My inkling is to say that the Steelers will have their best game of the season, but maybe the Titans will respond at home and in prime time. Steelers 20, Titans 10|
|vs.||Ravens Looking to Rebound: The Cowboys are coming off a bye week, and they could have really used one. After a great start to the season against the Giants with a nice performance from their defense, they proceeded to get blown out by the Seahawks and Bears over two of their next three games. I think the Cowboys can have some success with DeMarco Murray, given the Ravens' issues against the run this season. However, I don't have faith that the Cowboys will put together a competent offensive gameplan. The Ravens' offense has still been relatively inconsistent (see last week against the Chiefs), but when they are good, they're good. They'll get it done at home against Tony Romo. Ravens 26, Cowboys 17|
|vs.||Rookie Kicker vs. Rookie QB: How many games will rookie kicker Greg Zuerlein win for the Rams when the season ends? The Rams are coming off of two big division wins, but all three of their victories this season have come at home. The Dolphins have been a difficult team to read. They are obviously playing a relatively complete game in their victories, but I think they really need standout performances from Ryan Tannehill to get the jump done. Against the Rams' secondary, I don't think it happens this week. Rams 20, Dolphins 14|
|vs.||Determining Who's in a Worse Position: This is the fourth game I am writing about, and so far, I still feel a bit unsure about where all eight teams (well, maybe not the Titans) stand in terms of being a contender. That's incredible, considering we're heading into Week 6. The Detroit Lions are coming off of a bye week, but have struggled to score this season. The Eagles' defense has been the sole reason they've competitive this year. Against the Lions' defense, I think they can finally put together a few scoring drives this week, too. Eagles 28, Lions 20|
|vs.||Jets Need a Luck of Their Own: Uh-oh...I'm starting to be a believer. The Andrew Luck-to-Reggie Wayne connection is plain fun to watch. It'll be interesting to see Wayne matched up against Antonio Cromartie this week. Although the Jets gave a valiant effort against the Texans last week, that approach isn't going to get the job done consistently. Whether it be playcalling or execution, the Jets don't have things together right now. I think the Colts are going to be able to walk in and pull off the semi-upset. Colts 23, Jets 17|
|vs.||Quinn-sational: Any game that involves a former member of the Cleveland Browns fascinates me. With Brady Quinn set to make his first NFL start since he played for the Browns, I'm interesting in seeing how he does. Quinn has a lot of weapons at his disposal, including an elite running back and a top-quality wide receiver. The Buccaneers are coming off a bye. Although they started the season hot, I think they'll end up going on the downswing soon. Chiefs 28, Buccaneers 23|
|vs.||Blowout of the Week: The Raiders are one of the most dysfunctional teams in the NFL right now. The Falcons might just be the best team in the NFL right now. When you mix those two elements together, you have a big day of rushing from Michael Turner en route to a blowout. Falcons 35, Raiders 14|
|vs.||Competitive Game of the Week: This is an interesting matchup here. Since their Week 2 loss to the Cardinals, the Patriots have started to find their groove offensively, despite being without Aaron Hernandez. In particular, they have become one of the league's better rushing teams. Seattle's defense has played extremely well, though, and those fans of theirs are always rocking at home. They are only allowing an average of 14 points per game. I think Seattle makes it interesting early, but the Patriots close it out late. Patriots 21, Seahawks 17|
|vs.||Falling Apart vs. Exceeding Expectations: Although the Bills were very strong to begin the year on the offensive and defensive lines, they have been hit with the injury bug on both sides of the ball. The Cardinals' secondary was picked apart last week, but overall they have played very strong to compile a 4-1 record. I still have almost no faith in Kevin Kolb, but he still has a couple of good receivers at his disposal for when they do need a play or two on offense. Cardinals 23, Bills 13|
|vs.||Taming the Vikings With RGIII: Despite suffering a concussion last week, Robert Griffin III is expected to play this Sunday against the Vikings. That is key for Redskins, because without RGIII, the Redskins' chances of winning go down dramatically. The Vikings have quietly strung together a 4-1 record, but I think they are going to suffer their first real letdown of the season against the mobility of Griffin. Redskins 24, Vikings 17|
Game of the Week: I'm glad this game is after the Browns game, because I can't wait to see it. It is a rematch of last year's NFC Championship game, which the Giants won 20-17 in overtime. The 49ers are playing so dominant right now that they aren't going to let anyone get in their way. The fact that the Giants' pass rush is non-existent right now does help. The 49ers will get the win now, but it might be a different story when the postseason rolls around. 49ers 31, Giants 23
Matthews vs. Watt: I'm still puzzled by how the Packers could lose one game a season ago, yet have three losses this season. They have the talent to win these types of games, but they aren't getting it done right now. They won't turn things around against a red-hot Texans team. Clay Matthews might be a beast for the Packers, but J.J. Watt is even more of a beast for the Texans. Texans 38, Packers 24
Taking Control of the AFC West: The Broncos have fallen victim to falling behind so early in a game that when Peyton Manning is finally about to complete a big comeback, it is too little, too late. I can't imagine the Broncos missing the playoffs, and they can take control of the division by taking out the Chargers. With the Chargers having a shaky ground game, I'll go with Manning and company. Broncos 28, Chargers 21
Battle of Ohio, Part II: Don't underestimate the significant loss the Bengals suffered with RB Bernard Scott going down to injury. BenJarvus Green-Ellis is good, but he's such a one-dimensional back. With the Browns set to have Joe Haden back for the first time since Week 1 -- when their defense was great -- coupled with the fact that the Browns' offense did some good things against the Bengals the last time around, maybe Cleveland will get their first win of the year. My full game preview and prediction will be posted on Dawgs By Nature this Saturday, so stay tuned!
|Teams on the Bye Week |
Survivor Pick: I am 2-3 in survivor, having used the Texans and the Bears during my two-game winning streak. This week, I'll go with the Falcons over the Raiders.