NFL Weekly Predictions: Week 6

Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.

Philadelphia @ N.Y. Giants (+3)

The Eagles fell to 2-3 after a 23-21 home loss to the Vikings. Philadelphia had 2 crucial fumbles, one by Carson Wentz that was returned for a touchdown, and one by Jay Ajayi deep in the red zone.

"The damage was all self-inflicted," Doug Pederson said. "We shot ourselves in the foot, which is practically the same as shooting oneself in the thigh, like former Giant Plaxico Burress did. But it's one thing to nearly blow your balls off; it's another thing entirely to shoot your mouth off. That's what Odell Beckham, Jr. did in Fox NFL Sunday's new segment, 'Tandem Interviews With a Football Player and Rap Icon.' This week, Pam Oliver talks with Alvin Kamara and Afrika Bambaataa.

"Beckham and Saquon Barkley are tough to game plan for, so we're going to concentrate on Eli Manning. We plan to disguise coverages and confuse Manning. He's basically ineffective when he has that dumbfounded look on his face. Of course, when Eli has that look on his face, you have to wonder what he's thinking. Is it, 'I don't recognize that defensive alignment.' Or, 'how the hell did I win two Super Bowls?'"

The Giants nearly pulled the upset over the Panthers, but Graham Gano's 63-yard field goal as time expired gave Carolina a dramatic 33-31 win.

"That was a gutsy call by Ron Rivera to attempt a field goal there," Pat Shurmur said. "Frank Reich would have gone for it, Jason Garrett would have punted, and Pete Carroll would have passed.

"Please, can we stop talking about Odell's interview? Let's look at what he did on the field. You saw Odell throw a TD pass to Saquon Barkley. We have to get Odell involved in any way possible. That includes by air, by land, but probably not by sea. Odell should be nowhere near a boat, or a microphone, for that matter.

"But it's make or break time for my team, as well as the Eagles. Make or break games seems to be a weekly occurrence in the NFC East, for all four teams. We're in last place at 1-4, so it appears we are getting the 'breaks,' just not from the officials."

Philly unleashes their pass rush, and the Eagles win, 26-21.

Tampa Bay @ Atlanta (-3)

The Falcons were pummeled 41-17 to the Steelers at Heinz Field. Atlanta's offense was stifled by an inspired Steelers unit that held Atlanta to just 62 yards on the ground and kept the passing attack in check.

"Our offense certainly didn't perform as well as they have been," Dan Quinn said. "On the other hand, our defense did, which is not a good thing. They're giving up an average of 36 points per game in our last 4 games. Let's just say our defense is a great motivational tool for our offense."

The Bucs return from a Week 5 bye and look to get back on the winning track after a 48-10 blowout loss to the Bears. In that game, Ryan Fitzpatrick struggled, and was replaced by Jameis Winston.

"Jameis is our quarterback," Dirk Koetter said. "And I must say, we'd rather have him under center than under oath.

"That being said, Jameis is anxious to play well. He wants to be great. He wants to transcend football. In other words, he wants to be a 'world star,' not appear on World Star. We're hoping he can bring his own brand of magic to the team. Hopefully, that magic won't be making our offense turn to defense with a single pass."

Atlanta wins, 30-25.

Pittsburgh @ Cincinnati (-2½)

The Steelers trounced the Falcons 41-17 as the Steelers defense played their best game of the year. James Connor dominated on the ground, and Ben Roethlisberger passed for 3 touchdowns, 2 to Antonio Brown.

"This team is only as good as Antonio is happy," Mike Tomlin said. "And Antonio was happy, mostly because it was sunny and in the low 80s at kickoff, and everybody knows A.B. is a fair-weather fan. He also had 6 receptions and 2 scores. The only thing A.B.'s better at than catching footballs is grabbing attention.

"Our defense really came through. They're a young group, but I reiterated to them that we really need them to play like an 'under-30' unit. And they responded by holding a darn good offense to just 17 points. That's about half the average for both squads."

The Bengals improved to 4-1 with a comeback 27-17 win over the visiting Dolphins. Cincy scored 27 straight points after falling behind 17-0.

"Vontaze Burfict is back and ready to inflict his brand of punishment on the league," Marvin Lewis said. "And vice-versa. He's back after a four-game PED suspension. For once, I think the Steelers will condone one of his cheap shots in the hope he can knock some sense into Antonio Brown."

Steelers win, 30-27.

L.A. Chargers @ Cleveland (+1)

Greg Joseph's 37-yard field goal with two seconds left in overtime gave the Browns a 12-9 win over the visiting Ravens. Baker Mayfield passed for 342 yards, as Cleveland improved to 2-2-1.

"This team has a knack for the dramatic," Mayfield said. "Now, we can't call ourselves the 'Kardiac Kids' because that's been taken, but if you combine the 'Kardiac Kids' with the 'Dawg Pound,' the 'Heart Pounders' makes perfect sense.

"I expect a huge home-field advantage. The Dawg Pound could teach Chargers fans a thing or two, like how to buy a ticket, and how to attend a game, and how to be perennially disappointed."

The Chargers dominated the Raiders in a 26-10 home win, handing their AFC West rivals their fourth loss. Philip Rivers led the way with 339 yards passing and 2 touchdowns.

"The Raiders and Chargers really don't like each other," Philip Rivers said. "But my stance on the Raiders has softened since they traded Khalil Mack. I used to fear the Raiders rush; now, I embrace it. Or, it embraces me, because that's practically the only way the NFL allows a QB to be sacked these days.

"Baker Mayfield reminds me a lot of myself; that's why I don't like him. We both consider ourselves the leaders of our respective teams. On the Chargers, I'm 'Alpha Male'; Melvin Gordon is 'Alpha Mel.'"

Browns win, 28-27.

Seattle @ Oakland (+3)

The Seahawks lost 33-31 at home to the Rams, as Russell Wilson's 3 passing scores were not enough to overcome a big day from Todd Gurley.

"With the 'Legion of Boom' all but gone," Pete Carroll said, "Russell is the singular face of this franchise. He's the past, present, and Future is the father of one of his wife's children.

"Personally, I very excited to play in London. My powdered wig game is already top notch, and I love a good English muffin in the morning.

"It will be cool to face my old buddy Marshawn Lynch. I plan to meet him at the 1-yard line and greet him. Maybe he can't get a hand off from the one-yard line, but he can surely get a hand shake."

The Raiders lost 26-10 to the Chargers and fell to 1-4. While the Chargers sacked Derek Carr 3 times, while Oakland sacked Philip Rivers only once.

"Our pass rush needs act with a sense of urgency," Jon Gruden said. "But I don't want them to stress about it. So, I guess my words to them are, 'No pressure.'

"We may be 1-4, but I don't regret my return to coaching. I wouldn't trade it for the world, but if you're offering first-round picks in 2019 and 2020, plus a sixth-round pick in 2019, then I might reconsider."

The Raiders are tied for last in the league in sacks. Once Wilson realizes he doesn't have to run for his life, he'll find receivers at will.

Seattle wins, 26-20.

Chicago @ Miami (+3)

While it doesn't match the intrigue of a Jim McMahon/Dan Marino matchup, the Mitch Tribisky/Ryan Tannehill showdown at Hard Rock Stadium is a big game for both teams. The Bears want to maintain their lead in the NFC North, while Miami hopes to snap a two-game losing streak.

"Mitch is coming off a 6 touchdown performance against the Buccaneers," Matt Nagy said. "I would call that a 'career day' for Mitch. He hasn't had many of those. In fact, his last career day was his high school job fair. There, he was instructed that his ideal occupation was 'inconsistent NFL quarterback.'"

Bears win, 23-17.

Arizona @ Minnesota (-10½)

The Vikings delivered a critical 23-21 win at Philadelphia in a rematch of last year's NFC Championship Game.

"Our defense finally showed up," Mike Zimmer said. "Luckily, it was on the field, and not in a dumpster, on fire, in a boat, floating down the river. That would have been our season being honored with a traditional Viking burial."

The Cardinals won for the first time, knocking off the 49ers 28-18 at Levi's Stadium. Josh Rosen completed only 10-of-25 passes, but one was an early 75-yard TD pass to Christian Kirk.

"I feel like the monkey is off my back," Steve Wilks said. "And there's nothing on my tail, because we're in last place.

"Josh is hanging in there. Obviously, he's got a lot of things to learn. But we have a couple of veteran quarterbacks in Mike Glennon and Sam Bradford, and they've promised not to teach him anything."

Vikings win, 27-13.

Indianapolis @ N.Y. Jets (-2½)

A big game from Andrew Luck was not enough as the Patriots easily handled the Colts, 38-24. Luck passed for 365 yards and 3 touchdowns, but the Colts fell to 1-4, last in the AFC South.

"It's never easy to go to Foxboro and get the win," Luck said. "The Patriot mystique is strong, hangs in the air, and is hard to get off, like cheap cologne. It's called 'Patriot Mystique,' and it smells fishy."

The Jets manhandled the visiting Broncos, 34-16. Isaiah Crowell rushed for a franchise-record 219 yards, including a 77-yard TD romp.

"Isaiah had a great game," Todd Bowles said. "I would say he was the 'S,' but we're trying to forget that he wiped his butt with a football. He truly did go from the outhouse to the penthouse.

"But Isaiah was the first to credit his offensive line. He said, 'It's not 'a me' game, it's 'anus' game.' I think he meant to say it's 'an us' game."

Colts win, 24-21.

Carolina @ Washington (-1)

The Saints blasted the Redskins, 43-19, in New Orleans on Monday night. Drew Brees passed for 363 yards, eclipsing Peyton Manning to become the NFL's all-time passing yardage leader.

"We were just physically outmatched," Jay Gruden. "It was worse for a few players — some were bullied on the field and on Twitter. I don't condone bullying anywhere, and neither does First Lady Melania Trump. I asked her to speak to the team, and after a 43-19 beat down, her words to the team were never truer: 'Be better.'"

The Panthers overcame a Giants rally with Graham Gano's 63-yard field goal with one second left, which gave Carolina a 33-31 win.

"'Great leg,'" Ron Rivera said, "is a phrase Jerry Richardson has been forbidden to say in our facility.

"It's not unusual for us to win a game with our legs. In most cases, it's Cam Newton doing it. Cam is easily the best rushing quarterback in the NFL. And he gets the tough yardage. If it's on the ground, Cam's gonna get it, unless it's a fumble in the Super Bowl.

"Eric Reid started the game. And he played very well. He may kneel on the sideline, but he was a 'out-standing' on the field."

Washington wins, 23-20.

Buffalo @ Houston (-3)

The Bills beat the visiting Titans 13-12, winning on Stephen Hauschka's 46-yard field goal as time expired. LeSean McCoy rushed for 85 yards, and the Bills controlled the clock with 144 yards rushing as a team.

"LeSean's 85 yards on the ground were more than Josh Allen's 82 through the air," Doug McDermott said. "That's our recipe for success. We call it the 'Run and Toy Gun Offense.'"

The Texans won their second straight game, beating the Cowboys 19-16 in overtime. DeAndre Hopkins had 9 catches for 152 yards, including a 49-yard catch in OT that helped set up the winning field goal.

"Bragging rights were on the line," Hopkins said. "We won the 'Don't Mess With Texas' award, while the Cowboys took the 'Mess in Texas' award."

Houston wins, 24-11.

L.A. Rams @ Denver (+7)

The Rams nipped the Seahawks 33-31, led by 3 touchdowns on the ground from Todd Gurley.

"An NFC West road win is always huge," Jared Goff said. "Especially in an environment like CenturyLink Field. It's always so loud there, usually because players are arguing with teammates on the sidelines. Luckily, there's usually a teammate around to raise a finger and tell everyone 'shhhhhhhhhh.'"

The Broncos lost their third straight game, a lopsided 30-16 loss to the Jets at MetLife Stadium. The Jets ripped the Denver defense for 323 yards on the ground, 219 of those by Isaiah Crowell.

"You could say Crowell caused our defense to 'crack,'" Vance Joseph said. "He didn't just beat our defense, he 'wrecked 'em.'"

Rams win, 30-25.

Jacksonville @ Dallas (+3)

The Cowboys lost 19-16 in overtime to the Texans in Houston. Dallas had the ball in Houston territory in overtime, but Jason Garrett chose to punt instead of going for it.

"I had to explain myself to Jerry Jones," Jason Garrett said. "I thought of telling Jerry to 'mind his own business,' but he's already the best at doing that. Jerry's 'on the field' more than roughing the passer flags this season.

"I hear my job is in jeopardy. That may mean my name is less likely to appear on 'Jeopardy,' and more likely to appear on 'The Gong Show.'"

The Jaguars were stomped 30-14 by Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. The Jags didn't surrender a passing touchdown, but Mahomes passed for 313 yards, while Blake Bortles passed for 430 yards, but had 5 turnovers.

"Much like Mahomes," Doug Marrone said, "Blake is a nightmare to game plan for. For us. There are apparently two Blake Bortles. One who throws to the other team, and one who throws to the other team after bouncing it off a teammate's helmet."

Jalen Ramsey picks off Dak Prescott late and Deion Sanders-high steps into the end zone.

Jags win, 23-16.

Baltimore @ Tennessee (+3)

The Ravens lost 12-9 in overtime at Cleveland,

"We had our chances," John Harbaugh said. "Unlike the Stanley Cup champions just up the road in D.C., we weren't able to 'Capitol-ize.'

"These teams used to battle in the old AFC Central. Eddie George and Ray Lewis had quite a few collisions. And I'm talking huge collisions. But to my knowledge, neither Eddie nor Ray suffered any permanent brain damage. I heard the NFL wanted them to speak on the league's behalf in the concussion lawsuit. Eddie was all for it, but not surprisingly, Ray refused to testify."

The Titans lost to the Bills 13-12 in Buffalo.

"Marcus Mariota was just ordinary," Mike Vrabel said. "Unfortunately, that's a compliment."

Baltimore wins, 22-9.

Kansas City @ New England (-4½)

Tom Brady passed for 341 yards and 3 touchdowns in the Patriots' 38-24 Thursday night win over the Colts.

"I threw my 500th touchdown pass to Josh Gordon," Brady said. "Josh has a boatload of talent, and an equivalent amount of baggage.

"I hear Mahomes is quite adept at using his left hand. I use mine quite often as well, to remind me of what it's like not to have 5 Super Bowl rings."

The Chiefs defense dominated the Jaguars offense and Kansas City remained undefeated with a 30-14 win.

"I don't think we can expect 5 turnovers out of Tom Brady," Andy Reid said. "Brady is certainly no Blake Bortles. There's the 'TB12' method, then there's the 'BB5' method. With Bortles, there's a method to the badness."

Patriots win, 30-27.

San Francisco @ Green Bay (-7)

The Packers lost 31-23 to the Lions at Ford Field, despite 442 yards passing and 3 touchdowns from Aaron Rodgers. Mason Crosby missed 4 field goals and an extra point, contributing to the Packers' demise.

"I've seen David Crosby kick habits better than that," Rodgers said. "I had a talk with Mason. I told him I definitely know what it's like to have a leg that doesn't work right.

"I loved our offensive play-calling. I think Mike McCarthy listened to my concerns. He should know that the quarterback calls the shots in Green Bay. Brett Favre would agree. He called the shots, and sometimes even gave them to himself."

The 49ers lost 28-18 to the visiting Cardinals. San Fran out-gained the Cards, but 5 turnovers, 4 by C.J. Beathard, doomed the 49ers.

"It was devastating to lose Jimmy Garoppolo for the season," Kyle Shanahan said. "But we think C.J. can get the job done. He doesn't date porn stars, but he does have a porn star name."

Green Bay wins, 30-24.

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