Sep 29, 2013; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback EJ Manuel (3) drops to pass against the Baltimore Ravens during the second half at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Ravens 23-20. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Ramblin' Fan's NFL Picks and Predictions: Week 5

NFL Picks

Sep 26, 2013; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Rams defensive tackle Michael Brockers (90) defensive end Robert Quinn (94) and defensive end Chris Long (91) huddle up before a game against the San Francisco 49ers at the Edward Jones Dome. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Week 4 of the regular season is in the books and its time to review our record from last weeks NFL picks, as well as make our NFL picks and predictions for Week 5. Last week we got off to a pretty rough start by missing the Thursday Night pick as well as several early games on Sunday, however we bounced back nicely to finish a respectable 10-5.  This week I expect that the NFC West will post a pretty respectable 3-1 record yet again as I am picking the Arizona Cardinals to take down the Carolina Panthers at home while the Seahawks could fall to the Indianapolis Colts on the road in a bit of an upset. Lets get to this weeks NFL picks and predictions, again the NFC West games have been put in bold font in the table to make them easier to find. Thanks for reading and as always Go Rams!!!

Buffalo Bills @ Cleveland Browns (TNF) Thursday Night Football on NFL Network will showcase Bills rookie QB EJ Manuel versus Browns QB Brian Hoyer.  The Browns are currently on a 2 game winning streak with Hoyer as quarterback, but the success has largely been sparked by their defense.  Going to have to go with the strong defense at home playing against a rookie QB in just his 5th NFL game. Browns win 20 – 17.

Jacksonville Jaguars @ St Louis Rams.  The Rams opened the week as 12 point favorites, and considering how poor the Rams have looked over the last two weeks that speaks pretty loudly about the Jaguars.  The Jaguars will be welcoming back Justin Blackmon in this game, so they will have a little more firepower for the Rams to contend with.  However, they also just traded away their best offensive lineman which could make life even more difficult than usual for Blaine Gabbert.  Can the Rams finally get something that resembles a running game going?  Can Tavon Austin finally get some touches in space to utilize his incredible athleticism?  If either of those two things happen regularly on Sunday the Rams will be in great shape. Rams win 31 – 16.

New Orleans Saints @ Chicago Bears. The Saints offense has appeared to be almost indefensible while their defense has actually stepped up and made some big plays.  After the Bears were embarrassed by the Lions last week I imagine they will be looking to get back on track, but I just can’t see them slowing down the Saints high octane offense.  Perhaps if this game were played at Soldier Field in December, but its still early in the season and weather conditions shouldn’t be too much of a factor.  Saints win 38 – 27.

New England Patriots @ Cincinnati Bengals. Tom Brady and the Patriots have done just enough to remain undefeated, and while most of those wins have come against mediocre teams the victory over the Falcons was pretty solid.  Still the Bengals have an impressive defensive line that should be able to get pressure on Brady all day long, while the offense should find life easier now that Vince Wilfork wont be owning the middle of the field.  If Andy Dalton can take care of the football the home team should come away with the win.  Bengals win 24 – 20.

Detroit Lions @ Green Bay Packers. This game could end up being quite the shootout, and honestly it feels like a coin toss game to me.  I will go with the Packers at home because as I have said several times you go with the home team if they have the better QB.  The Lions offense has been something else when Reggie Bush has been on the field, he has really been a game changer for them so far.   Packers win 28 – 24.

Kansas City Chiefs @ Tennessee Titans. The loss of Jake Locker really hurts the Titans chances in this game as he was really showing some improvement this year.  The Chiefs haven’t exactly been spectacular, but they are a very solid and well coached football team that should continue to win games they are expected to win.  As long as Alex Smith continues to protect the football the Chiefs can continue to roll.  Chiefs win 21 – 13.

Seattle Seahawks @ Indianapolis Colts. The Seahawks survived what should have been a loss in Houston thanks to a few spectacular plays, and one terrible play call/execution by the Texans.  If the Seahawks get off to another slow start on the road this week they wont have Matt Schaub to bail them out.  While Andrew Luck will find it tough sledding against the Seahawks impressive defense, he should be able to do enough to hand them their first loss.  Colts win 27 – 17.

Baltimore Ravens @ Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins struggled on Monday Night as they were beaten handily by the New Orleans Saints.  The Ravens suffered from 5 Joe Flacco interceptions in their loss to the Bills last week.  Miami’s defense should be able to rebound nicely against a relatively limited Ravens offense.  The Ravens offense just hasn’t looked the same since Jacoby Jones went down in week 1, and with Ray Rice at less than 100% life wont be getting much easier for Flacco in Miami.  If Mike Wallace can actually catch a few balls this week the home team should pull out a close one.  Dolphins win 27 – 24.

Philadelphia Eagles @ New York Giants. The Giants have to win a game eventually, and even though they have looked like one of the worst teams in the NFL so far they still have a Pro-Bowl caliber quarterback and some talented skill position players.  The Eagles offense has been churning out rushing yards almost at will, much like Chip Kelly’s offenses used to do at Oregon.  If the Giants can at least come away even on the turnover margin they can win this game, but the way they have been turning the ball over that could be a tall order.  Still going to go with Manning at home for the Giants first win of the season.  Giants win 24 – 21.

Carolina Panthers @ Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals traded Levi Brown to the Pittsburgh Steelers this week, which probably isn’t going to help Carson Palmer much.  Although Brown wasn’t exactly playing like a bookend left tackle so perhaps it doesn’t have much impact on the Cardinals offense.  The return of Daryl Washington should help the Cardinals defense slow down Cam Newton, as he was probably the units best player in 2012.  In a game that could easily be a coin toss I will go with the home team that has Larry Fitzgerald.  Cardinals win 17 – 14.

Denver Broncos @ Dallas Cowboys. Peyton Manning continued his incredible march through the record books last week, and has yet to throw an INT and is averaging 4 TDs per game.  The Cowboys defense has been a bit better this season, but with the way Morris Claiborne has been struggling you better believe Manning has taken notice.  The Broncos offense should be able to put up big numbers in Jerry’s World, something the Cowboys offense seems unlikely to match.  Broncos win 38 – 27.

Houston Texans @ San Francisco 49ers (SNF on NBC). The Texans are coming off a gut-wrenching loss the Seahawks and now have to face another tough NFC West opponent.  The 49ers got back to what took them to the Super Bowl in 2012 by putting up big numbers in the ground game in week 4.  The 49ers offensive line is the best in the NFL, and it is at its best when it can impose its will through the ground game.  That will be a tall order this week as JJ Watt is as disruptive as any defensive player in the NFL.  Still I will go with Kaepernick at home over Matt Schaub anywhere.  49ers win 31 – 24.

San Diego Chargers @ Oakland Raiders (SNF on NFLN). The Raiders and Chargers game has been moved to the night-time to allow for the Oakland Athletics playoff game.  The Raiders will be getting Terrell Pryor back but they will likely be without Darren McFadden and Marcel Reese could be limited with an injury.  Philip Rivers is quietly playing some of the best football of his career and should be able to carry the Chargers past the Raiders.  Chargers win 20 – 13.

New York Jets @ Atlanta Falcons (MNF). The Falcons need to get a convincing win over an inferior opponent on primetime football after getting off to a slow start.  With no Steven Jackson yet again the Falcons need to figure out a way to manufacture a ground game with Jason Snelling and Jacquizz Rodgers.  If they can get a ground game going and keep defenses honest they will be nearly impossible to stop.  Julio Jones could have a big night on the primetime stage, and if Roddy White can get closer to 100% the Falcons offense could really get rolling.   Falcons win 30 – 16.

NFL Week 5 Matchups


Bills @ Browns (TNF)


Jaguars @ Rams


Saints @ Bears


Patriots @ Bengals


Lions @ Packers


Chiefs @ Titans


Seahawks @ Colts


Ravens @ Dolphins


Eagles @ Giants


Panthers @ Cardinals


Broncos @ Cowboys


Texans @ 49ers (SNF on NBC)


Chargers @ Raiders (SNF on NFLN)


Jets @ Falcons (MNF)


Last Week


Overall Record


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