After a 2-14 season in 2011 the Rams have played strong so far this season as they have had a chance to win every game in the fourth quarter. The Cardinals meanwhile are 4-0, but they have had three real close games that could have gone either way. Playing Thursday Night on the road is a disadvantage, the Rams are 2-0 at home and should be able to win this defensive battle.
The Dolphins have played well despite their 1-3 record as they lost their last two games in overtime. However, that is what happens to you teams like the Dolphins. The Bengals meanwhile, are a step ahead having made the playoffs last year, and looking even stronger this year with BenJarvis Green-Ellis helping them add balance to their solid passing game.
The Colts got devastating news this week when Coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with Leukemia. Losing their coach would be tough for a veteran team, but for a rookie team it could be even harder. They may say they want to play in tribute and may have a strong game, but at this point I cannot see Andrew Luck outplaying Aaron Rodgers. Luck may have a good game, but Rodgers will be the difference as the Packers win on the road.
The Chiefs have lost their mojo at Arrowhead Stadium, as they have not played well at home over the last few seasons. The Chiefs have even begun thinking of changing quarterbacks as Matt Cassel has struggled. The Ravens come in rested and playing well on offense as well as defense. With the rate the Chiefs are turning the ball over and as weak as their defense has played it is hard to imagine they can beat the Ravens.
The Giants won the Super Bowl last season, but they had an up and down regular season. At 2-2 the Giants again look to be on the same track. The Giants should beat the winless Browns, but this is the type of game they could be caught sleeping in, if they are not careful. Browns Rookie RB Trent Richardson could give them a hard time, but its hard to imagine Bradnded Weeden will have a good game as the Giants win at home.
The early bye week could be just what the doctor ordered for the Steelers as they should have a healthy Troy Polamalu and James Harrison. The Eagles are the most fortunate 3-1 team in NFL history as they are a bounce here and a bounce there away from being winless. The Steelers at home needing a win will get it as they force the Eagles into making the big turnover.
Last week the Falcons remained 4-0 with a late clutch win against the Panthers at home. However, for the early part of the game they were driven nuts by Panthers QB Cam Newton. Redskins QB Robert Griffin III should give them the same issues. The Falcons offense though if off to a great start, and against the banged up Redskins defense I see them staying unbeaten as Matt Ryan has another big day in the Nation’s Capital.
The Seahawks are a Jekyll and Hyde team that excels at home and struggles on the road. This game is on the road, and the Panthers at 1-3 are desperate for a win. Last week the Panthers played well on the road but lost late to the Falcons. If they equal that effort at home they should be able to beat the Seahawks. The goal has to be avoiding the big mistake, as the Seahawks defense will make you pay.
With a win in Jacksonville the Bears could be on their way to a real strong season, as they come into Week 5 after an impressive Monday Night smackdown of the Cowboys. The Bears defense has been solid so far and that is bad news for the Jaguars who have had trouble moving the football. Expect another long day for Blaine Gabbert as the Bears eliminate MJD early and cruise to an easy win.
At 3-1 the Vikings have already equaled their 2011 win total, and it is no fluke they have been outstanding in every game. Their defense has played well, while Christian Ponder has shown great improvement at quarterback. The Titans meanwhile limp in at 1-3 and they are playing poorly their second year quarterback is hurt and RB Chris Johnson’s game is on a Milk Carton. Look for an easy win by the Purple People.
Another Brady-Manning showdown is the main course on Sunday’s Week 5 smorgasbord. Last week, Tom Brady appeared to find his groove with a strong second half as the Patriots exploded for 45 points in the second half. The Broncos have played well and should be able to score on the Pats defense. However, it is hard to imagine the Patriots losing two straight at Foxboro. Look for the Pats to win a shootout.
The 49ers recovered nicely from a Week 3 letdown by crushing the Jets in the Meadowlands. Back home, the look to establish a strong home field edge as they battle the Bills. Look for the 49ers defense to shutdown the Bills running game and put all the pressure on QB Ryan Fitzpatrick. When that happens, the Bills lose, plain and simple. The 49ers will win this one easily.
No team likes to troll their fans more than the Chargers, who always seem to follow up a strong game with a stinker. This week I see that trend continuing as they lose on Sunday Night to the winless Saints. The Saints can’t afford another loss, but their play in Lambeau Field should be able to give them some confidence coming home. Look for former Chargers Drew Brees and Darren Sproles to have a big night in ending the Saints losing streak.
As they say in Houston, the Jets have two chances to win this game; Slim and None, and Slim just left town. The Jets already lost Derrelle Revis their best player overall now lost their best offensive weapon Santonio Holmes. The Texans come in smoking and are looking towards impressing on Monday Night, their offense does not have a weakness and their defense will make it hard for the Jets to even find a way to points on the board.