UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
More Sports

NFL Week 5 game-by-game predictions

NFL Week 5
 
Sunday, Oct. 10
 
1 p.m. ET (CBS)Denver Broncos (2-2) at Baltimore Ravens (3-1)
Great test for the NFL's passing-yards leader, Kyle Orton (1,419), who is on a silly 5,676-yard pace. Baltimore's secondary is playing far, far better than anyone thought it would. I see a good duel here, with Orton getting his yards and Baltimore getting the win.
 
1 p.m. ET (CBS)Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2) at Buffalo Bills (0-4)
Not exactly the game of the week. The NFL really was scraping for positive Bills info in the weekly game capsules written by the league's PR staff. Listen to this one: "Seven of WR-KR Roscoe Parrish's 10 receptions have been for first downs.'' Think about that for a second. Parrish is the Bills' speed guy. Seven of 10 receptions for first downs is actually a negative. Not to diss this game or anything.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)Chicago Bears (3-1) at Carolina Panthers (0-4)
Without the concussed Jay Cutler, missing the first game of his pro career due to injury, this one will be much closer than it should be. Todd Collins is going to need a very strong game from Matt Forte to avoid getting pummeled by the Panther rush.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1) at Cincinnati Bengals (2-2)
Rightfully, Carson Palmer has been targeted for the Bengals' bad start; he had a C-minus first month. But the offensive line and Cedric Benson need to gaze in the mirror Sunday in Cincinnati before this game and take some of the blame, too. Benson, the cornerstone of the Bengals running game, is rushing at a 3.3-yards-per-carry clip, a yard below last year. If that doesn't get fixed, neither will the Cincinnati offense.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)Atlanta Falcons (3-1) at Cleveland Browns (1-3)
Eric Mangini on this generation's Norm Bulaich, Browns jumbo back Peyton Hillis: "Even I avoid him in the hallway.'' I say Hillis eats enough of the clock against the Falcons to make this my upset special.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)St. Louis Rams (2-2) at Detroit Lions (0-4)
Toughest game to pick this weekend. Don't laugh. It is. I think the Lions shut down Steven Jackson, but Sam Bradford makes enough throws to put the Rams over .500 for the first time in October since the Cro-Magnon walked the earth.
 
1 p.m. ET (CBS)Kansas City Chiefs (3-0) at Indianapolis Colts (2-2)
I'll bet you a triple latte that the Chiefs win time-of-possession and lose the game. The only way K.C. wins is to pound Thomas Jones and use Jamaal Charles and Dexter McCluster as speed men outside -- and to hope Peyton Manning gets his hands on the ball only six or seven possessions. Of course, that's been the formula of about 70 percent of the teams that have played the Colts, and you see how far that has gotten foes.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)New York Giants (2-2) at Houston Texans (3-1)
We could see 700 yards passing in this game. I can't see the Giants' defensive front embarrassing a good Houston offensive line the way it did Chicago's last week, though.
 
1 p.m. ET (Fox)Green Bay Packers (3-1) at Washington Redskins (2-2)
Never thought after a month of the season I'd see this yards-per-attempt comparison between Donovan McNabb, with a poor wideout corps, and Aaron Rodgers, with a very good one: McNabb 7.92, Rodgers 7.70. Rodgers, in my mind, has to find Greg Jennings.
 
4:05 p.m. ET (Fox)New Orleans Saints (3-1) at Arizona Cardinals (2-2)
Max Hall, starting his NFL career, looks across the field in Glendale Sunday and sees the quarterback his coach thinks he has a prayer of becoming: Drew Brees. But on this day, there's only one cool Brees.
 
4:15 p.m. ET (CBS)Tennessee Titans (2-2) at Dallas Cowboys (1-2)
For Chris Johnson to get untracked, offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger has to put the fear of Vince Young into defenses. Throw deep to Kenny Britt, Vince.
 
4:15 p.m. ET (CBS)San Diego Chargers (2-2) at Oakland Raiders (1-3)
Remember when Jason Campbell was supposed to be the next Jim Plunkett?
 
8:20 p.m. ET (NBC)Philadelphia Eagles (2-2) at San Francisco 49ers (0-4)
I am a sucker for those Niners, aren't I? I am falling on the Alex Smith sword this week. I see the good things he does and think, He's going to put it together one of these weeks and shock the world. ... Well, I say he has enough good weapons to shock Kevin Kolb and the Eagles Sunday night.
 
Monday, Oct. 11
 
8:30 p.m. ET (ESPN)Minnesota Vikings (1-2) at New York Jets (3-1)
I made this pick for the magazine on Monday morning, before the Randy Moss trade. I'm sticking with it, in part because I think Brett Favre would rather be anywhere but the Meadowlands Monday night, and the Jets are going to pressure him heavily.
 
SI.com

Drag this icon to your bookmark bar.
Then delete your old SI.com bookmark.

SI.com

Click the share icon to bookmark us.