It's Week 5 in the NFL and we have 13 games this week as six teams have byes. There are three games this week I'm really, really excited to see: Jets-Patriots, Packers-Falcons and Bears-Lions. Those are my top three games right now.
Here are my picks for Week 5 (and I didin't include the Kansas City Chiefs-Indianapolis Colts game. That'll come a little later.)
New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers: At the beginning of the season, I didn't expect this to be a game I'd look forward to but then Cam Newton went off and started playing like a 10-year veteran. Cam looks awesome but the Saints are simply a better team. I'm taking Drew Brees and Co. here.
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Buffalo Bills: The upstart Bills hosting the "Dream Team" -- err, the team formerly known as the "Dream Team" -- and I'm taking Buffalo. Chan Gailey's offense has been a lot of fun to watch and I think they take advantage of Michael Vick's inconsistencies. Buffalo with the upset.
Seattle Seahawks vs. New York Giants: Seattle is a strange team. They should be better but there's no direction with them. Are they a running team? A passing team? Defensive juggernaut? I don't think any of those apply. The Giants will win this game and move to 4-1 and remain in first place in the NFC East.
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Jacksonville Jaguars: Two teams that can't sell out their stadiums meet in Jacksonville (although this game is "sold out", thanks to the beer company). The Bengals were one of the early surprise teams and I'll stick with them here. The defense is too strong for Blaine Gabbert.
Tennessee Titans vs. Pittsburgh Steelers: The Steelers can't fall to 2-3, can they? I don't think they will. Pittsburgh's defense returns, even without James Harrison, and puts a stop to the Matt Hasselbeck show.
Oakland Raiders vs. Houston Texans: I can't pick the Raiders. I just can't. Besides, Houston is the better team anyway. The Texans move to 4-1 and, with the Titans loss, they take control of the AFC South.
Arizona Cardinals vs. Minnesota Vikings: Tough game to pick here. I mean, the Vikings gotta win at some point, right? Maybe so, but I can't pick an 0-4 team to beat the Cardinals, even if they're at home. I'm taking the Cards.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. San Francisco 49ers: Did anyone expect this to be one of the best games of the week? The Bucs are battling with the Saints at the top of the NFC South and the 49ers have a whopping two-game lead in the NFC West through one month. Flipping a coin...I'm taking the 49ers.
New York Jets vs. New England Patriots: This is probably the game of the week. The Patriots are perfect this year outside of blowing it in Week 3 against the Bills so I'll stick with New England in New England. All of a sudden, you gotta wonder if the Jets make the playoffs. (Yes, cue Jets fans freaking out and telling me it's only five weeks into the season.)
San Diego Chargers vs. Denver Broncos: The Chargers have been very un-San Diego like early in the season actually winning games. It's time for them to take a step back with Norv Turner. This is my upset of the week -- Broncos beat Chargers.
Green Bay Packers vs. Atlanta Falcons: This is probably the second best game of the week. The Packers are 4-0 and while it's still too early to be talking about an undefeated season it is something we've thought about. The Falcons, meanwhile, could drop to 2-3 with a loss. I'm going with the Packers to keep the winning streak alive and beat the Falcons on Sunday Night Football.
Chicago Bears vs. Detroit Lions: I've never said this before but: How awesome would it be to be a Lions fan right now? They're the darlings of the NFL and Monday Night Football is returning to Detroit. The crowd in Detroit will be going absolutely wild. I would love to go to this game. I think the crowd gets the Lions going and they top the Bears on MNF.