Here we are in Week 3 of the NFL season, maybe at this point in the season you can get an idea of who the contenders and tankers are usually. I’ll be honest though, I’m lost. Some teams are failing expectations vastly, some are far better than I thought, and everyone seems close with the exceptions of a few. That creates a problem for me. You see, I promised I would be better than the 8-7 record I accrued in Week 1, but turned around and went 8-8 in Week 2. A coin flip once again could have probably done better. So I now sit at 16-15 and feel more confused than ever. Not looking too good, but after quite some time debating this Week 3 slate, I think I have seen the future. Now I’m not saying that I’m going to go 16-0, but don’t be surprised when I do. Or maybe I’ll go 0-16. Go easy on me, this is tough. Let’s get started.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns
Winner: Pittsburgh Steelers
Summary: Death. Taxes. And the Browns being the Browns. They were the first team to give up a 13 point lead in the final two minutes and lose in regulation in over twenty years. Yeah I don’t know what to tell you, the Steelers aren’t exactly elite but at least they don’t do that. Their defense should be very good and their offense should be a little less flat hopefully, and they should win this one in Cleveland. This will come at the dismay of many Browns fans wondering if they’re back, in all the wrong ways.
Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots
Winner: Baltimore Ravens
Summary: I honestly think the comeback the Ravens gave up on Sunday was more embarrassing, but I don’t have a stat to show just how ridiculous their loss was. The Patriots, on the other hand, went and handled business. This won’t matter much though in this matchup. The Ravens are a good but not great football team, and the Patriots are pretty mediocre. The duo of Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill embarrassing will not be the job of Kendrick Bourne and Jakobi Meyers, so we’ll just call that a downgrade and not hurt as many feelings. Lamar scores all four times and the Ravens cruise to a win in Foxborough.
Kansas City Chiefs at Indianapolis Colts
Winner: Kansas City Chiefs
Summary: The Colts have to be the biggest disappointment of the season by far, I had them as the one seed and the haven’t even managed to get a win against the Texans or the Jaguars. They should be completely ashamed of themselves, and Frank Reich’s chair needs to start warming up if this putrid play continues. My rant is over, but I hate when teams are supposed to be good and then ruin my predictions by sucking. It’s just rude. They definitely aren’t righting the ship here either. Mahomes should carve them up to the tune of 300 yards and 3 touchdowns, as Jonathan Taylor backpacks this team for two touchdowns himself, but it is not enough as the Colts fall to 0-3 against a talented Chiefs team.
Houston Texans at Chicago Bears
Winner: Chicago Bears
Summary: This game could be unironically entertaining, as it will probably be very close and filled with plenty of blunders by two weak teams. Something is telling me that the Bears get by the Texans here, even with all the drama surrounding them following Justin Fields’ comment after the Packers game last Sunday. This would make the Bears 2-1. Yeah, I don’t know either. Justin Fields throws for 200 yards, which sounds mediocre, but it would double his season passing yards total which currently sits as 191. He’ll throw for one touchdown and they’ll rely on David Montgomery for the other one. They’ll win this one at the buzzer with a field goal, something that Bears fans will probably all get PTSD flashbacks from as the kick goes up. Bears are 2-1 I guess.
Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins
Winner: Buffalo Bills
Summary: This game was actually one that I considered the upset for. The Dolphins are boiling hot and riding the high of a huge comeback last week against the Ravens. Hosting the Bills and using their wide receiver duo to lift them to a win would not be too far fetched. I then remembered that the Bills have outscored opponents 72-17 this year, so lets press the brakes on that fantasy, Dolphins fans. The Bills are the league’s best team and they’ll show it again against a good Dolphins team as Josh Allen throws four more touchdowns and over 300 yards. Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle both score, but it is not enough as the Dolphins fall to 2-1 and the Bills continue their revenge tour.
New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers
Winner: New Orleans Saints
Summary: Jameis Winston must have forgotten that he is no longer on the Buccaneers last week, as he threw them three great passes, one of which was returned for a touchdown. It was a horrid effort, as he missed many wide open receivers and elected to take unnecessary risks against a Bucs team that usually can’t beat them. Atleast the fight was fun to watch though. The Panthers have been close twice, but close doesn’t count. They will try and get the momentum going against New Orleans but ultimately fail. Michael Thomas and Chris Olave each catch touchdowns as Christian McCaffrey’s 100 total yards isn’t enough. Saints move to 2-1 while they try to keep pace and the Panthers sink to 0-3.
Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings
Winner: Minnesota Vikings
Summary: This might be the hardest game that I have had to pick all year, I almost actually flipped a coin. These are two teams that we don’t know much about, because they have shown some amazing things and some really bad things. I debated for a while before I finally decided that the Vikings would get it done at home. I don’t see a cornerback in Detroit that can contain him, so he will go for 100 and 2 touchdowns. Amon-Ra St. Brown will try and match him with a touchdown of his own, but the Vikings are able to keep them at bay long enough to get the win here. This should be a great game.
Cincinnati Bengals at New York Jets
Winner: Cincinnati Bengals
Summary: Hello? Bengals? Are you awake? You just lost to Mitch Trubisky and Cooper Rush back to back. Don’t lose to Joe Flacco now too. I truly believe that the Bengals will get it going, as it has become a trend to call them overrated, and I don’t necessarily agree with it yet. It is two games, and this is a great team. The Jets looked great last week, but they’ll be awoken from their dream here, as we seen the Bengals finally get it done after losing by three points for two weeks straight. They’ll change the narrative and get their own three point win here as Joe Burrow finds Tee Higgins for two touchdowns, while Garrett Wilson impresses again with a touchdown of his own in the loss. Each team moves to 1-2 as Bengals fans put the paper bag away for atleast a little bit longer and are reminded of how good this team can be.
Las Vegas Raiders at Tennessee Titans
Winner: Las Vegas Raiders
Summary: I love these matchups. Two teams that were supposed to be good, and have a combined 0 wins coming in. There is a sense of urgency on both sides, and one of these teams knows it could fall to 0-3 with a loss on Sunday. That could lead to these teams playing scared and making mistakes, or it could lead to an absolute battle. Either way, the fans are in for some entertainment. I don’t see the Raiders losing this game, even though their coach is probably the worst in the league. Davante Adams will be too much for the Titans, as he amasses 150 yards and a touchdown. The former one seed Titans sink to 0-3, as questions about this entire team only continue to swirl as they look for their first win heading into Week 4.
Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Commanders
Winner: Philadelphia Eagles
Summary: The Eagles look good. Really good. Jalen Hurts has been steady, and may be more than just a good fantasy quarterback after a string of well played games. Their defense is a little inconsistent, but when they lock in, they look elite. I picked Darius Slay to lead the league in interceptions and he is looking like he may do just that. The Commanders have been surprisingly good on offense and look like a potentially good team as well. I think they’ll get humbled here by a division rival though. Jalen Hurts finds AJ Brown and Devonta Smith for touchdowns, while Carson Wentz plays well, but not well enough for his return to Philly to end in a Commanders win.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Los Angeles Chargers
Winner: Los Angeles Chargers
Summary: The Chargers played hard against the Chiefs on Thursday. Herbert played through a painful rib injury and they came up just short of a great “prove it” win. As long as Herbert plays, I think this determined Chargers team can take down a surprisingly stable Jaguars team. I am going to even say we get a bit of a quarterback duel, as Herbert and Lawrence both throw for 3 touchdowns and 250 yards apiece. This will end with the Chargers getting back on track though, as they move to 2-1 and the Jaguars recoup and move to 1-2 with a future looking possibly bright down the road this season.
Green Bay Packers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Winner: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Summary: This could be a high flying shootout or a more laid back defensive battle, I went with the latter here. The Buccaneers defense has looked elite this year, and they should give Aaron Rodgers and the receivers he babysits some trouble. On the other side, the Bucs offense has been somewhat stagnant, so this will be a close one. Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers each manage to get to 250 yards here in a battle for the best room in the retirement home, but the Buccaneers do just enough here to leave this game at 3-0, as Rodgers and company fall to 1-2. How long until Rodgers fails a drug test at this rate? My guess is ayahuasca in Week 6.
Los Angeles Rams at Arizona Cardinals
Winner: Los Angeles Rams
Summary: The Rams almost broke the curse by letting the Falcons come back from a 28-3 deficit of their own last week. They sucked down the stretch, and McVay is partially to blame a week after his stagnant Week 1 gameplan. The Cardinals had a miraculous comeback themselves after trailing 20-0 at half. It was probably the game of the day and a much needed win for them ahead of this matchup. This should be a shootout, with Stafford and Murray both matching each other step for step. This will end with a late game-sealing drive by the Rams, only after Stafford and Murray each throw for over 300 yards with 3 touchdowns apiece though. Cooper Kupp could have a field day against a weak secondary as well, and it’ll help the Rams move to 2-1 as the Cardinals leave this division matchup at 1-2 and licking their wounds.
Atlanta Falcons at Seattle Seahawks
Winner: Atlanta Falcons
Summary: Ah, here we have the legendary “Battle of Mediocrity” between the Falcons and Seahawks. This will probably be a hard game to watch, but a close one for sure. Most people would pick the 1-1 Seahawks here, but I think the Falcons are due for a win here. Marcus Mariota outduels Geno Smith, who apparently did in fact write back, en route to the Falcons win. Kyle Pitts and Drake London each score as the Falcons save face by joining the Seahawks at 1-2.
San Francisco 49ers at Denver Broncos
Winner: San Francisco 49ers
Summary: The 49ers lost Trey Lance last week to an ankle injury, and the exciting young QB is now done for the year. They thankfully retained Jimmy Garoppolo, who looked good in relief of Lance last week as their team really seemed to rally around him. You know who hasn’t looked good though? Russell Wilson. He needs to get it figured out but instead he will be exposed again by a former division rival that knows many of his tricks. The Broncos offense will look stagnant again here, an unnerving trend for new head coach Nate Hackett. Jimmy G finds Brandon Aiyuk for a score, and Jeff Wilson gets one himself as the 49ers continue to march, while the Broncos fall to 1-2 after another disappointing effort.
Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants
Winner: Dallas Cowboys
Summary: Cooper Rush is now 2-0 as a career starter, that is honestly just really interesting. He has beaten two good teams also, so maybe he can beat a Giants team that finds themself at a surprising 2-0 also. That is what I am betting on, as the Cowboys swarming defense has held each one of their top notch offensive opponents in check to start the season, which may be just enough for Cooper Rush’s undefeated streak to continue. Saquon Barkley manages to score twice, but it is not enough as Cooper Rush does enough by throwing for 200 yards with 2 touchdowns as each one of these NFC East teams moves to 2-1 after week 3.