FREE NFL Predictions: Week 6
In order to make accurate predictions in the future, we have to learn from the past. This NFL season has been a wild one, every week it seems that there will be at least one tie.
For example, the Cleveland Browns at 2-2-1, could very well be 5-0, or they could easily be 0-5 or even 0-0-5. In this era, close games are common, and often unpredictable.
Five weeks into the season, I believe there is clarity in the NFL. With this clarity, I have prepared five picks I feel very good about in week 6 of the NFL season.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+3) at Atlanta Falcons (-3)
The Atlanta Falcons may just be the best 1-4 team in the league right now. They have had several heartbreaking losses before getting blown out by Pittsburgh in week 5. Offensively, this is still a great team led by Matt Ryan and Julio Jones. Calvin Ridley has also emerged as a potential Rookie of the Year candidate.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-2) are on a downward spiral after starting 2-0 with Ryan Fitzpatrick leading the team. Since then, Tampa Bay has lost two straight, and Jameis Winston has taken over the starting quarterback role. The Falcons are favored favored by 3 and I will gladly take them to cover the spread. This Atlanta team still has a chance to make good of their season.
Pittsburgh Steelers (+2.5) at Cincinnati Bengals (-2.5)
Many were freaking out when the Steelers started 1-2-1 at the quarter mark of the season. People are not unaccustomed to mediocrity in Pittsburgh. The Steelers are going to be fine, and it is hard to believe they are going into a division game as the underdogs.
Cincinnati, to its credit, has looked very good through the first five weeks of the season, boasting a 4-1 record. Andy Dalton to this point is a dark-horse MVP candidate, but can he win the big game? I trust Ben Roethlisberger more than I do Dalton, and that is why I am taking the Pittsburgh Steelers to get the outright win in Cincinnati.
Los Angeles Chargers (-1) at Cleveland Browns (+1)
Who would have ever thought the Cleveland Browns would become must-watch television?
So far, Baker Mayfield has proven himself as the worthy first overall pick of the 2018 draft, and he has become an icon in Cleveland after playing in only three appearances. I like the Browns, they’ve shown they can compete in any type of game. The Chargers may be the least popular sports franchise in Los Angeles, but that isn’t stopping them from making noise outside. Philip Rivers has the Hall of Fame numbers, but he’s looking for postseason success to add to his resumé. A win against Cleveland would give the Chargers a 4-2 record, and help them get back to the playoffs. Take the Chargers to win in a close one, but one point is too small of a margin. The Chargers will cover the spread and Cleveland will be looking at another losing record after week 6.
Baltimore Ravens (-3) at Tennessee Titans (+3)
Both teams come into this game with a 3-2 record. They are also coming off losses to teams they should be better than. Tennessee lost at Buffalo, Baltimore at Cleveland. Baltimore comes into this game as the favorite and its only because of their impressive Sunday night win at Pittsburgh in week 4. Tennessee is 2-0 at home with wins over Houston and Philadelphia. The Titans strong suit is their defense and it will be that unit that carries them past Baltimore for the outright win.
Jacksonville Jaguars (-3) at Dallas Cowboys (+3)
Simply put, this is a match-up of one of the best defenses in all of football vs. one of the worst offenses.
Jacksonville is coming off of an embarrassing performance at Kansas City where they gave up 30 points to Patrick Mahomes and co. Blake Bortles turned the ball over five times, putting the defense in terrible positions throughout the game. Dallas has the defense that can win games, but its offense is holding this team back. Dak Prescott has not evolved from his rookie season, and he no longer has elite targets to throw to. Ezekiel Elliott has been the only bright spot for Dallas as he leads the league in rushing yards.
Give me Jacksonville to win and cover the spread while doing so. The Jaguars have the capability to be a great team, and great teams often bounce back from disappointing losses.
This is going to be an exciting week for football. As October continues, it will become more clear which teams are the contenders, and which are the pretenders.