Going coast to coast in the NFL is hard enough, but doing so on a short week is almost impossible. The Eagles still are stinging from a can of whoop ass from the Patriots on Sunday, since than they have only had one day to really prepare for the Seahawks. Add they will once again be without Michael Vick and you have a host of problems all while dealing with Seattle’s 12th Man who will relish a chance to be loud in primetime as Marshawn Lynch gashes the Eagles front seven.
The Bills are due. Last week they should have won in the Meadowlands if not for Stevie Johnson getting a case of the drops after mocking Plaxico Burress. The Titans finally got a good game from Chris Johnson last week as they stayed in the Wild Card Hunt. The Bills will get a boost coming home and a strong game from Ryan Fitzpatrick to lead the way to get back .500, while their defense smothers the Titans inconsistent offense.
When Jay Cutler got injured the Bears tried to get former QB Kyle Orton who was released by the Broncos. They did not get him, as the Chiefs who lost Matt Schaub claimed him first. Now Orton will start in Soldier Field hoping to deal his first team a big setback. This will be Orton’s first start for the Chiefs and it will be a hard one as the Bears defense will give him nightmares, meanwhile Matt Forte will carry the Bears on offense.
The Falcons are about the least impressive 7-4 team, as they just do enough to win each game. The Texans at 8-3 come in and are now without QB Matt Schaub and his back up Matt Leinart. This leaves T.J. Yates to lead the Texans the rest of the way. Arian Foster and their defense will have to have a superhuman effort for them to beat the Falcons. With the Falcons defense keyed on Foster that will be impossible look for a Falcons two touchdown win.
The Dolphins have played terrific football in November, losing a one point heartbreaker in Dallas after three straight wins. Now they are back home in Miami to begin December. They have another tough one against the first place Raiders. This is the typical early start trap game for a West Coast team. Look for the Dolphins defense to smother the Raiders offense, as they come up with the close win.
Tim Tebow has won in the black hole, he has won in primetime in South Beach and in the Mile High, but he has not faced a dome. The true reason of the success for the Broncos has been their defense, as Von Miller is having a dominant rookie season. The Vikings have a good defense too led by Jared Allen, who will be able to get Tebow as he tries another late comeback, but this time he will fall short.
The Colts should remember these words “O most holy apostle, Saint Jude, faithful servant and friend of Jesus, the Church honoureth and invoketh thee universally, as the patron of hopeless cases, and of things almost despaired of. Pray for me, who am so miserable. The Patriots with Coach Cobra Kai Bellichick believe firmly that mercy is for the weak as the roll up the score as big as possible.
The Steelers slept walk through a win over the Chiefs while the Bengals nearly got caught looking ahead against the Browns. Now the two meet on the field in what is the biggest game of the year for the Bengals. The Steelers have gotten good news this week as Troy Polamalu appears to be ready to play after missing the second half against the Chiefs with a concussion. Facing the Bengals at home the Steelers should be able to win easily to keep pressure on the Ravens and stand strong in the Wild Card Hunt.
The Buccaneers have played awful football as of late, and have basically been eliminated from the Wild Card Hunt. The Panthers got a win last week against the lowly Colts, but have also looked shaky as of late. The Bucs are due to break through eventually and I sense that will come on Sunday against the Panthers. Look for a big defensive effort from the Bucs to contain Cam Newton, as LaGarrette Blount leads the way on offense.
The Redskins ended a six game losing streak with a 4th Quarter comeback in Seattle last week. The Jets meanwhile won the battle of survival against the Bills. This is another must win for gang green as they face the Redskins in Washington. This could be a big game for Darrelle Revis and the Jets defense as Redskins QB Rex Grossman’s pass hang up enough for interceptions. This is going to be the key for victory as the Redskin defense could create problems for Mark Sanchez in a low scoring game.
The Browns are just a dreadful offense, but they have played well on defense. The Ravens also strong rely on their defense. This one will be closer than expected as the Browns will throw a big scare into the first place Ravens. Look for it to come down to a battle of Field goals as Billy Cundiff kicks the Ravens to victory as the Ravens overcome a shaky game from Joe Flacco, while their defense holds down the Browns.
Last year on Christmas Day the Cardinals got a gift from the Cowboys winning on a missed Field Goal and extra point. That game John Skelton played well for the red birds. Skelton has played well in place of Kevin Kolb this year, but facing a Cowboys team with ten days off it will be much harder. Arizona also traditionally has been good to the Cowboys in the stands. Look for them to take over the stadium again as their pass rush leads the way to another victory as they begin to run away in the NFC East.
Last year the Packers needing a win to stay in the Wild Card Hunt hammered the Giants in the next to last game of the season. It was the start of a six game winning streak that carried through the Super Bowl. That streak is alive at 17 games as they are 11-0. It won’t end this week as the Packers will be able to do much what the Saints did on Monday. Eli Manning will keep it close, but the Packers have way too many weapons.
In the 1980’s and 1990’s the NFC West was virtually owned by the 49ers who won 13 division titles from 1981-1997. Since then they have only one the NFC West once, now on Sunday they can clinch their first division title since 2002. This will be a day of celebration in Candlestick as the Rams will put up little resistance against the 49ers defense, who will spend all day in the Rams backfield.
With Ndamukong Suh serving a suspension for his Turkey Day stomp, the Lions chances of winning in the Superdome have gone from slim to none. The Saints offense right now is right up there with the best in the league after a 49-24 slaughtering of the Giants on Monday Night. Expect Drew Brees to continue his hot hand as the Saints go up and down the field all day on the Lions defense.
The uncertainty bowl matches the Chargers and Jaguars on Monday Night Football. The Chargers started the season 4-1, and have not won since Rex Ryan mocked Norv Turner who must feel time slipping away with this six game losing streak. The Jaguars meanwhile playing home on Monday Night where they beat the Ravens earlier this year will look to impress for interim Coach Mel Tucker who replaced the fired Jack Del Rio on Tuesday.