The Green Bay Packers have been one of the more impressive teams in the NFL, through the season’s first three weeks. Aaron Rodgers again looks like one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL, while the Green Bay defense has been smothering opposing teams. The Philadelphia Eagles at 1-2 have been shaky. Carson Wentz has been mediocre, while the defense has been porous. Going into Lambeau on Thursday Night, the Eagles could be in danger of watching the season spiral away. Logically it is hard to pick against the Packers, but my gut tells me to take the Eagles, and when you have a gut like mine you have to listen.
Two teams sitting at 1-2, need to start showing signs of life, or changes can be soon to come. For the Atlanta Falcons, it could be a bit of a tough early schedule as their losses have been on the road. The Tennessee Titans meanwhile have lost their last two after starting the season with a win, as fans have called for Marcus Mariota to be benched. With the Falcons being, a solid home team, expect those calls to get louder in Music City as the Falcons win.
The Cleveland Browns had the highest of hopes when the season began as a strong finish had them believing they could win the AFC North. However, through three games the Browns have shown they have a way to go before they can be a real contender. Coach Freddie Kitchens has made some rookie mistakes, while the offensive line has been spotty. The Baltimore Ravens meanwhile have been solid with Lamar Jackson even going toe to toe with Patrick Mahomes in their one loss last week.
The New England Patriots may have their best team yet, as the defending champions who have won six Super Bowls in the last 19 years have dominated their first three games. The Patriots defense has been especially tough, as they have allowed just one field goal in three games. The Patriots still have Tom Brady, but the offense is a tad banged up. The Buffalo Bills also 3-0 have been strong on defense, but their offense has at times been shaky. The Patriots have dominated the Bills over their dynasty so don’t expect that to change, but the Bills defense could keep this one close.
The Kansas City Chiefs have gotten off to a 3-0 start while facing a tough stretch, as they needed road wins against the Jaguars and Raiders while beating the Ravens in the home opener. Now they have to go on the road again to face the Detroit Lions who are a bad quarter away from being 3-0 themselves. This is the type of game that is bad for the Chiefs. The Lions are the ultimate pain in the ass team that brings their best performances when they are underdogs, especially when they are a home dog. YES, DETROIT AS PROMISED I AM PICKING THE LIONS ON SPITE.
Both of these teams went West last week and came up with surprise wins. The Carolina Panthers got a great start from Kyle Allen. Allen will now be the starting quarterback going forward, as Cam Newton is expected to be out long term with a foot injury. If Allen plays as well as he did last week, Newton may not even be the starter when he comes back. The Houston Texans meanwhile got a great team effort against the Chargers. Deshaun Watson has been solid so far as Houston is one long kick away from being 3-0. Expect to see the Texans defend their turf and win a close one at home.
The Indianapolis Colts have so far been able to weather the storm following the sudden retirement of Andrew Luck. At 2-1, the Colts have been impressive in wins over the Titans and Falcons, while they forced overtime in their loss to the Chargers. Injuries could be an issue for Indianapolis as T.Y. Hilton, and Darius Leonard are both questionable. However, the Oakland Raiders struggles are never questionable as they rarely win games in early starts, as their long-extended road trip enters its second week.
The Miami Dolphins have dedicated themselves to getting the number one pick as anyone with any talent has been traded off. What is left is a roster that is not capable of competing as they have been outscored 133-16 over the first three games. The Los Angeles Chargers come in off two bad losses and have historically struggled in early games. The Dolphins last week were competitive for a half, but eventually, their deficiencies became pronounced as they were shutout in the second half. Expect an empty stadium as tickets are selling for $10 on StubHub as the Dolphins are blowout again.
Daniel Jones will be making his first home start for the New York Giants against the winless Washington Redskins. The Redskins were embarrassed once again on Monday Night Football, last week as they committed five turnovers against the Bears. The Giants needed a miracle comeback last week in Tampa. The Giants defense had a good second half last week but has otherwise been one of the worst in the league. Case Keenum nearly got Washington back in the game last week and has not been awful. Look for the Giants to miss Saquan Barkley as the Reskins come into the Meadowlands and get the upset.
Even as they won their first two games, there were signs of trouble for the Seattle Seahawks, as their defense had trouble making tackles and their line had problems protecting Russell Wilson. The Arizona Cardinals have had flashes but have yet to win with Kyler Murray. Murray can thank Wilson for getting the top spot in the draft, as the success of the Seahawks quarterback opened the door for smaller quarterbacks. Look for Murray to look like a young Russell Wilson in beating the Seahawks in the desert.
The Los Angeles Rams have not shown any signs of a Super Bowl hangover, as they have been quite impressive, in winning their first three games. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have been Schizophrenic as usual. With a play here and there, they could also be 3-0, while they can just as easily be 0-3. Tampa, saw their defense exposed late last week by the Giants, expect the Rams to find the same holes and win going away.
Last season the Minnesota Vikings season came to an end with a bitter home loss to the Chicago Bears in Week 17. The Vikings are 2-1 so far this season, having shined in their first two games at home. The Bears, meanwhile, have arrived at 2-1 on a road filled with potholes, as Mitch Trubisky has been somewhat inconsistent. The NFC North is shaping up to be the best division in the NFL, meaning teams playing at home will need to be at their best.
The Denver Broncos face a crisis point in their season as they sit 0-3 and are hosting the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars got their first win of the season last week, as Gardner Minshew showed the power of the mustache on Thursday Night. The Broncos defense has yet to hit their stride, as Joe Flacco has struggled big time. Falco will continue to have his troubles against the Jaguars defense. The Broncos defense will need to step up here, Denver is still a hard place to win on the road, and while Minshew won at home, it will be hard to see him winning at Mike High.
Last season the Dallas Cowboys went into the Superdome and ended the New Orleans Saints ten-game winning streak. The Saints come into this one 2-1 as Teddy Bridgewater impressed in Seattle last week. The Cowboys come into this game 3-0 and have yet to find a real test. Had Drew Brees been healthy this game could have been that test for the Cowboys, but it is hard to imagine Bridgewater and the Saints being able to keep up with the offensive potency of the Cowboys.
Both teams come into this game 0-3. The Pittsburgh Steelers still trying to get used to life without Ben Roethlisberger have dominated the Cincinnati Bengals over the last decade as they are 16-3 including the playoffs since 2010. This includes wins over the previous seven meetings. The Steelers have always tended to play well in primetime games. The Bengals meanwhile, always seem to lose the close ones. Last week the game was there for the taking for the Steelers as they forced five turnovers. If they can equal that against the Bengals, they can certainly win this game.