NFL: Week 5

By: S. Davis

dak

So most – if not all – touchdown celebrations are drawing penalty flags (and fines) but the league continues to allow idiotic “look at me” gesturing after a simple first down conversion, basic tackles, etc? Whatever! Scoring is difficult, let the players enjoy themselves; football is business but it’s also still a game.

Week 5:

Arizona 21 @ San Francisco 20: Before the season began I would’ve looked at this game for about two seconds before easily selecting the Cardinals and moving on…but the Cardinals are coming off another flat performance (and another loss) to the Rams. What’s going wrong?

Carson Palmer is performing as if last year’s playoff funk is still hovering over his head like those dark clouds in children’s cartoons – and he’s crippling his team with turnovers. There are a ton of ways to win in the NFL but giving the ball back the opposition, repeatedly, isn’t on the list. A trendy pick to win the Super Bowl, the Cardinals have to win this week to ensure they don’t get left behind in the NFC West.

New England 30 @ Cleveland 17: I think, think that some guy named Tom Brady is supposed to start for the Patriots this Sunday.

Philadelphia 23 @ Detroit 21: Eagles? We all see how poised Carson Wentz has played in the three starts he’s made but the Eagles’ defense might be the bigger story. I’m interested to see how they play in this game.

Chicago 23 @ Indianapolis 27: I have no clue about what the Colts are. Do they?

Tennessee 17 @ Miami 20: I’ll take the Dolphins’ pass rush here to get the win.

Washington 17 @ Baltimore 23: Ravens?

Houston 17 @ Minnesota 23: At some point the Vikings are going to win enough games to where everyone will have to take them seriously. They play stout, defensively, while Sam Bradford looks like the player he was drafted to be six years ago. The run attack is abysmal so they have to address that weakness in order to keep opposing defenders honest.

The Vikings are looking to make noise this season but when will we all listen?

NY Jets 21 @ Pittsburgh 30: Is this a division game? It seems like these teams play every season or maybe I’m just eating too many donuts; could be.

In any case, the Steelers are close to complete with Le’Veon Bell back on the depth chart to pair with all the other impressive pieces Mike Tomlin has at his choosing. The number for points this season is 30 for the Steelers. With a defense that’s struggling in pass coverage they need to build big leads on teams early and play zone until the clock runs to zeros. I smell a stinker though because the Jets tend to hang around in games when they’re clinging to life. They are barely breathing right now.

Atlanta 20 @ Denver 30: All things almost even, I’ll take the home team.

Cincinnati 23 @ Dallas 17: The Cowboys are playing well across the board but I feel confident that A.J. Green will be too much for their secondary.

Buffalo 22 @ Los Angeles 20: I don’t think the Rams are a good football team but they’ve fielded a formidable defense for years, that’s a plus. It would make sense for Rex Ryan to puff out his chest last week after shutting out the Patriots – and coach his team to a complete turd on the field this week. I have to choose the lesser of two evils here…

San Diego 24 @ Oakland 21: The Raiders have earned three victories away from NorCal and that’s an achievement for a young team. Every season a team comes into the year with all the combined hype of the football world – this year it’s the Jaguars for reasons I do not grasp – but at some point all the attention must be validated by producing wins.

The Raiders are winning and Derek Carr is doing the one thing that solidifies a team on the rise: game-clinching drives. Maybe I need a little more convincing this week but I see what the Raiders are building.

NY Giants 21 @ Green Bay 34: Packers!

Tampa Bay 20 @ Carolina 26: I don’t know how but the Panthers could be watching their season get away from them. My bad, they are and this game is vital if they want to have any chance of making an appearance in the postseason.

Last Week: 7-8
Season: 35-28

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