Week 10 NFL Preview by Bradford Brooks
As NFL teams enter into Week 10, many are at the top of the weekly rankings, while other teams are simply trying to survive through the rest of the season. Check out the Score’s predictions for the best match ups of week 10.
Seattle Seahawks (5-3) at Arizona Cardinals (4-4)
When: Thursday at 8:25 p.m. ET (NBC), University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Arizona
A Thursday night NFC West matchup, where the Seahawks are coming off a 17-14 loss against the Washington Redskins and the Cardinals are fresh from a win versus the San Francisco 49ers. So far this season, the Seattle Seahawks have not been the same team that many have come to know and fear. In the past three games the Seahawks have been penalized a astonishing 41 times, and have yet to establish a consistent run game.
But what has been going wrong for the Seahawks has been going right for the Cardinals with a rushing attack led by veteran running back, Adrian Peterson. He has rushed for 134 and 159 yards in two of his first three games since being traded to Arizona.
Backup quarterback Drew Stanton will be filling in for the injured Carson Palmer. Stanton is 7-3 when starting in Palmer’s place, he has won each of his last four starts, and is 3-0 when starting at home for the Cardinals.
The Seahawks are dealing with several injuries including key players such as Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, and Jimmy Graham. But in a tight divisional race, this is a game that Seattle can’t afford to lose if they want to continue to keep their playoff hopes alive. Russell Wilson and company must find a way to win on this Thursday night game.
Prediction: Seattle win 20 to16
New York Jets (4-5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-6)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (CBS), Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida
Who would have thought that the New York Jets would be playing like this midway through the season? Led by their stout defense which ranks 7th in the NFL and 15-year vet Josh McCown, who has completed 70 percent of his passes for 13 touchdowns this season.
Meanwhile the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who came into the season as a possible playoff team and made plenty of key offseason additions is currently 2-6. The Bucs will also be without their starting quarterback Jameis Winston on Sunday, who is sidelined for a shoulder injury. The Tampa Buccaneers have dropped 5 games in a row and have been unable to establish a real identity. Look for the Jets to control this game on the road.
Prediction: Jets win 23 to 10
New Orleans Saints (5-3) at Buffalo Bills (5-3)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (Fox), New Era Field, Orchard Park, New York
The New Orleans Saints who have been one of the hottest teams in the NFL this season will be on the road facing a team in Buffalo, who will be looking to rebound after their Thursday night loss against the New York Jets.
The Saints will be a tough team to face as they are one of the more balanced teams in the league. However the Bills have been perfect this year at home and have had three extra days of rest and recently acquired wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin looks ready to go. This will be a back and forth game that the Bills will be able to pull out at home and win.
Prediction: Bills win 27 to 24
Cincinnati Bengals (3-5) at Tennessee Titans (5-3)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (Fox), Nissan Stadium, Nashville
The biggest matchup here is the Cincinnati Bengals defense against the Tennessee Titans offense. This Bengals defense is still one of the best in the game despite the challenges that they have faced this season on the offensive side of the ball. Cincinnati can contain the run and has the cornerbacks on the outside to shut down the pass game too.
This is a tough matchup for the Titans because of the corners on the Bengals defense; they won’t be afraid to load the box to stop the run. Tennessee has a good defense but not a great one.
The problem for the Bengals offense is that they have too simple of a scheme to outperform the Titans unit. Tennessee will be able to shut down many of the plays Cincinnati has had success with. The offensive line is a mess, and the Bengals cannot get the run game going on a consistent basis. Because of this, the Titans will most likely make just a few more plays and wear the Bengals down over the course of four quarters.
Prediction: Titans win 20 to 17
Green Bay Packers (4-4) at Chicago Bears (3-5)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (Fox), Soldier Field, Chicago
The Green Bay Packers are not the same team without Aaron Rodgers and have been suffering since he has been sidelined.
The Chicago Bears have been able to prove this season that they are no longer pushovers and that their defense is the real deal and is capable of winning games.
The Bears have one of the best front seven in the NFL and will look to put a lot of pressure on Brent Hundley and the Packers offense. The Bears will look to run the football and apply pressure in this home victory.
Prediction: Bears win 24 to 20
Cleveland Browns (0-8) at Detroit Lions (4-4)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (CBS), Ford Field, Detroit
The Cleveland Browns are currently 0-8 and have not been able to find consistency at the quarterback position this season. They have been pedestrian in the red zone and haven’t been able to take of the football.
On the other hand Detroit who is coming off a road win versus Green Bay during Monday night football dominated the game as Matthew Stafford completed 26 of 33 passes for 361 yards and two touchdowns without an interception.
The winless Browns are allowing opposing quarterbacks to complete 68.8 percent of their passes and 16 touchdowns. This is a game where Cleveland will just not be able to have the offensive firepower to win on the road.
Prediction: Lions win 27 to 7
Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2) at Indianapolis Colts (3-6)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (CBS), Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis
The Indianapolis Colts defense has been one of the worst in the NFL this year as they rank dead last in points allowed per game.Giving up an average of 28.9 points per game. This will not be good versus the red hot Steelers who have been one the best teams in football this season and have an explosive offense that have been able to capture off three wins in a row.
In those three wins running back Le’Veon Bell carried the football over 30 times and produced 130-plus yards each time. The Colts defense has also given up an average of 113.9 rushing yards per game this season, will be helpless against the relentless rushing attack of the Steelers. Indianapolis will be looking to pull off an upset but it will come down to who is the better team in this game and that is simply not the Colts in this matchup. Look for the Steelers to have a big day both offensively and defensively.
Prediction: Steelers win 34 to 17
Los Angeles Chargers (3-5) at Jacksonville Jaguars (5-3)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (CBS), EverBank Field, Jacksonville
The Chargers have been inconsistent to say the least this season and haven’t been able to consistently move the football.
The Jags will be getting back rookie running back Leonard Fournette ,who will be facing a Chargers run defense that is 31st in the league. Look for the Jaguars to be able to control the game with a stout defense and great running game.
Prediction: Jaguars 31 to 20
Minnesota Vikings (6-2) at Washington Redskins (4-4)
When: Sunday at 1 p.m. ET (Fox), FedEx Field, Landover, Maryland
One of the better matchups of the week, the Vikings have been a under the radar super bowl contenders this season have been great on both sides of the ball despite the injuries that they have faced.
Minnesota has been able to have best defensive units in football and that will be Washington’s biggest challenge as they have multiple injuries on their offensive line. Washington was able to get a road win against the Seahawks last week but Minnesota just has too many weapons on both sides of the ball.
Prediction: Vikings win 34 to 31
Houston Texans (3-5) at Los Angeles Rams (6-2)
When: Sunday at 4:05 p.m. ET (CBS), L.A. Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles
Houston is not the same team without rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson. The offense is stagnant and the defense has given up to many big plays as a unit.
The Rams meanwhile have been clicking on all cylinders; quarterback Jared Goff is playing well, the running game has been rolling with running back Todd Gurley, and their defense has been able to force turnovers ranking top 10 on defense in takeaways.
The Rams have been one of the biggest stories this season in football and will continue to keep it up this week against the Texans.
Prediction: Rams win 27 to 10
New York Giants (1-7) at San Francisco 49ers (0-9)
When: Sunday at 4:25 p.m. ET (Fox), Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, California
A game between two bad teams the New York Giants and the San Francisco 49ers who are a combined 1-16 this season. With questions in the media regarding the future of Eli and if the Giants should draft a replacement in this upcoming draft, and the recent acquisition of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo for the 49ers, this will be a game that will ultimately be battling for draft position.
Even with multiple injuries the Giants will still have more talent on the field compared to the 49ers who have been a complete mess on both sides of the ball. Won’t be the prettiest of games but the Giants will finally get another victory.
Prediction: Giants win 28 to 10
Dallas Cowboys (5-3) at Atlanta Falcons (4-4)
When: Sunday at 4:25 p.m. ET (Fox), Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta
This is a game that could become a shootout. The Dallas Cowboys have been rolling and have shown over the past few weeks that offensive line is back and that they can run with the best of them.
Atlanta has a solid run defense but will have their hands full still against Zeke and the Cowboys. The Cowboys secondary is their weakest unit and will have to try to hold off Julio Jones and a collection of playmakers for the Falcons.
But at this moment the Falcons haven’t been the same explosive team from a year ago, and the Cowboys have their juice back. Dallas goes on the road and gets a win.
Prediction: Cowboys win 38 to 27
New England Patriots (6-2) at Denver Broncos (3-5)
When: Sunday at 8:30 p.m. ET (NBC), Sports Authority Field, Denver
These are not the same New England Patriots that fans are used to seeing, however they continue to win. The Broncos will look to have a better outing than they did last week against the Eagles as their defense got picked apart by quarterback Carson Wentz.
The Patriots have won 11 straight road games and will look to continue against the struggling Broncos who recently switched quarterbacks and have had injuries all along their offensive line. This will be a game where the Broncos offense will have to try to get something going as the Patriots have given up an average of 417 yards per game, the most in the entire league.
This is a game that will be very close for a while but eventually Tom Brady and the Patriots will pull away.
Prediction: Patriots win 34 to 17
Miami Dolphins (4-4) at Carolina Panthers (6-3)
When: Monday at 8:30 p.m. ET (ESPN), Bank Of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina
The Carolina Panthers have already won as many games as they did last season and have put themselves in good shape as they begin the second half of their schedule. This will be a pivotal game for Carolina as they will be battling for position atop of the NFC south and to keep their playoff hopes alive.
The Dolphins have lost back-to-back games, and will be facing a Carolina defense that is ranked in the top 5 and only allowing 274 yards per game. Carolina is the better team and will have to have another big performance from their defense and protect the football.
Expect Carolina to come out on top versus Monday night at home.
Prediction: Panthers win 24 to 17