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2014 NFL Season: Pokorny's Week 7 Picks

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With another decent week in picks last week, my percentage on the season improved to 57% accuracy. I finished last season at 64%, so that's what I'm aiming for this year. Feel free to share your general thoughts on this week's games in the comments section.

Week 7 Games Explanation Pick
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Patriots Don't Lose in October: The Patriots appear to be back on track offensively, while the Jets have lost five straight games. We've seen Rex Ryan rally his troops before, but I get the sense that this is the end of the road for him and a lot of the players on his club. Averaging 16 points per game won't cut it, let alone in New England. Patriots 31, Jets 13

Note: This game already happened, but I'm posting my pick from our DBN open thread for record-keeping purposes.

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Common Ground: These two teams share a common bond: they've both blown the hell out of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Heading into the fourth quarter, the Falcons held a 56-0 lead over the Bucs. The Ravens held a 38-0 halftime lead over the Bucs last week. Both of these teams have the offensive punch, but the Falcons' defense can't make enough plays to be a contender. Ravens 28, Falcons 21

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Cam's Maximum Potential: Last week, we saw the Cam Newton who I have been wanting to see more often: he ran the ball 17 times for 107 yards, and although the game ended in a tie, the Panthers are in first place in their division. The Packers are rolling on a three-game winning streak, so I'll stay with them to keep the momentum another week. Packers 31, Panthers 28

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Defensive Implosion: Over their first three games, the Bengals' defense allowed 11 points per game. Over their past two games, they are allowing 40 points per game, putting in to doubt their ability to be a contender in the AFC. Now, they face one of the highest-scoring teams in the NFL on the road without A.J. Green again. The cards are in Indy's favor as Cleveland could slip past the Bengals this week. Colts 34, Bengals 21

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Flip a Coin: These are probably the two teams in the NFL that I don't really have a pulse on, as they've been flipping wins and losses from week-to-week. I'll give the edge to the Bears, despite my concerns about their defense -- they have the home-field edge, and Miami has struggled to stop teams defensively. Bears 28, Dolphins 17

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Not Against a Good Defense: When Teddy Bridgewater went to town on the Falcons a few weeks ago, fans were optimistic about what he could do for the Vikings this year. Against a good defense in Detroit last week, Bridgewater was sacked 8 times, threw 3 interceptions, and the Vikings couldn't run the ball. The Bills feature a good defense and at least some weapons offensively -- enough to take out the Vikings. Bills 21, Vikings 14

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Bye Week Gameplan: The Lions are 4-2 on the season and 3-1 in their last four games. During that four-game stretch, they've only averaged 18.5 points per game, while allowing just 11 points per game. That is a great testament to how well their defense has been playing, but the concern offensively is real: they don't run the ball well, and with Calvin Johnson's status in doubt again, Matthew Stafford hasn't been as sharp. The Saints obviously have their defensive issues, but coming off of the bye, I'll go with the Saints have a good offensive gameplan to get the job done, even if Jimmy Graham is limited. Saints 27, Lions 17

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Trouble in Paradise? Suddenly, the Seahawks don't seem so spectacular. They are third in the NFC West at 3-2, lost a home game to the Cowboys last week, and made a surprising trade to the Jets of WR Percy Harvin on Saturday. On defense, Seattle has been doing well in the yardage department, but they aren't getting the sacks or turnovers that are game-changing. They are still good enough to beat a team like the Rams, but are they good enough to be a playoff team? Seahawks 28, Rams 13

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Questions at QB: Both of these teams face big question marks at the quarterback position moving forward, but this game will likely feature both backup quarterbacks: Charlie Whitehurst vs. Kirk Cousins. Washington's defense has been less than impressive, but they won't have to worry about that as much against a low-octane offense in the Titans. Redskins 24, Titans 20

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Persevering in the Face of Adversity: Some people have questioned whether the Chargers' close call to the Raiders last week is a sign of weakness, but I find strength in a team that still rallies in the face of adversity. The Chiefs are a good team, but they are about to fall 3-4 games back in what will be a rather crippling position to come back from, given their division. Chargers 23, Chiefs 20

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Winless for Awhile: The Raiders don't have a potent run game, averaging 72 yards rushing per game. The Cardinals, meanwhile, are one of the best teams in the NFL at stopping the run. Those two factors will make the Raiders one-dimensional again, and that gives them little chance at winning as Carson Palmer will beat his former team. Cardinals 23, Raiders 9

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A New Feeling: How many years have we been subjected to watching the Cowboys have legitimate talent, yet stumble into mediocrity? Now, we're finally seeing them harness their talent together, and leading the way are Tony Romo and DeMarco Murray. I had jumped on the Giants' bandwagon during their three-game winning streak, but after seeing them fall flat on the road last week in a 27-0 loss to the Eagles, how can I have faith in them on the road against Dallas? Cowboys 34, Giants 20

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Game of the Week: San Francisco's games have been coming down-to-the-wire the past three weeks, but they've emerged with three straight victories. This should be a thrilling game, and I'd really love to see if the 49ers let Phil Dawson try a 60-yard field goal in Mile High. I don't think there is a single week this season that you'll see me pick against Peyton Manning, though. Broncos 28, 49ers 21

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One Man Show: I have never seen one player have such an individual impact on a defense than J.J. Watt has. I mean, he's just one guy out of 11 defenders on the field, and yet it seems like he stops several drives all by himself each and every week. Sacks, tipped passes, tackling, returned touchdowns; he can do it all. The Steelers are clearly a shaky football team this year, but they're also not as bad as Cleveland made them appear last week. They'll get back to the ground game this week, while the Texans won't have enough offense to pull off the upset. Steelers 17, Texans 13

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You're Either the Cattle or the Butcher: The Browns have been the cattle for so long, but now it's time for them to become the butcher. That means opposing teams will be gunning for them instead of the other way around, but with a running game like Cleveland has, the Browns always have a safe, reliable gameplan to fall back on if things go awry. My full game preview and prediction will be up later today for the Browns vs. Jaguars game.

TBA
Bye Week

Pokorny's Week 6 NFL Picks Record: 9-5-1
Pokorny's Record w/ Browns Games: 2-3
Pokorny's 2014 NFL Picks Record: 52-38-1

Survivor Pick: I have a five-game winning streak going after the Broncos taking out the Jets last week. I've already used NE, NO, SD, GB, and DEN. This week, I'll take the Seahawks to beat the Rams.