A few weeks ago I said I could envision the Panthers finishing the season at 10-7. I don’t think they’ve won since. But you know, I can still see them winding up at 10-7 if I put my glasses on ... my ROSE COLORED glasses! That’s right, I said it, come at me Panthers fans! I’m sorry, you must have me mistaken with someone that gives an eff. I have slightly more confidence in the Falcons, but that’s not saying much. With a win though, Atlanta would be 4-3, and at worst tied for the final wild card spot in the NFC. And who knows, maybe they’ll sneak into the postseason and make some noise once they’re there. Yeah, and at that point the pigskin won’t be able the only airborne swine, because the Falcons doing anything of note come January will happen when pigs stop rolling around in their own filth long enough to sprout wings and do their best Peter Pan impression, ok?!? That’s right babe, we’re talking when pigs fly here (This is my new writing style, based on an emoji mashup of sunglasses smiley face and smirking face).
Miami at Buffalo
Did you know that every team in the AFC has two losses? Well ok, not the Dolphins, they have 5. But hey, you can’t count to 5 without counting to 2! But if we’re talking teams with exactly 2 losses then it’s a group of six: Bengals, Raiders, Titans, Bills, Ravens, Chargers. But that’s still a surprisingly high number. The question now is, which team is going to step up and separate themselves from the pack. Come on, who wants it most?!? Put your hand down Dolphins, I was only talking to the two loss teams. Yes, I know this is your space, and I should be discussing all the games you’ve lost. I’m sorry! I’ll get to that next week, I promise. I mean, it’s not like you’re gonna stop losing this week, right? Riiiiight ...? Come on ... Ahh, there’s that smile!
San Francisco at Chicago
Jimmy Garoppolo continues to make a confused, perturbed face every time he throws an interception or fumbles, or just does something antithetical to winning. It's a look that conveys a sort of “What’s going on here?!? How the hell did that happen?” attitude. It’s as if he doesn’t realize that he’s not very good. The rest of us have a full understanding of Garoppolo’s limitations as a quarterback, yet he remains bewildered by his lack of domination. I won’t blame him if he gets that look on his face a few times this game after watching Justin Fields throw the ball. The Bears rookie is good for a few head-scratchers per quarter. The important thing for Fields to remember is that he shouldn’t be the one scratching his head afterward. Don’t be like Jimmy G, understand your flaws and move forward. But don’t move forward right into that d lineman, ah no, throw it away! No like out of bounds! Argh. How the hell did that happen?
Pittsburgh at Cleveland
Myles Garrett’s will likely force Ben Roethlisberger into retirement by the end of this game. Not due to a serious injury or anything, I just think Garrett will sack and harass Roethlisberger enough that at some point in the second half the Steelers offense will take the field and Ben will shrug and say, “Nah.” And that will be that. Roethlisberger’s career will officially end, 6 or 7 weeks after it unofficially did. One day the Steelers organization will erect a statue of Big Ben to commemorate his 2021 season. It will be a unique piece, because it’ll double as a live reenactment of his final games.
Philadelphia at Detroit
The Lions threw everything they had at the Rams last week and lost. Now do they have anything left for the Eagles, a team they could maybe actually beat? It’s like so many movies or TV shows where the protagonist tries so hard to get the popular guy or girl to notice them that they don’t realize their real match was right in front of their noses all along. Maybe it’s too late for the Lions now though. Or maybe ... maybe if they hurry they can catch the Eagles' bus before it leaves for the airport. If Detroit can’t get to them in time Philly will get on the plane for that study abroad program and the Lions won’t see them for a whole summer! Go Lions! Here, take my car, I know yours got totaled when you crashed it in the big drag race in an attempt to impress your crush. It doesn’t matter now, none of it does! All that matters is that you stop the Eagles and tell them how you feel!
Tennessee at Indianapolis
The Titans have two impressive victories over the Chiefs and Bills, with one of their losses coming against the Cardinals. At this point, a loss to Arizona is nothing to hang your head about, though they did get blown out. Either way though, Tennessee is putting together a pretty solid resume. Oh wait, I was meaning to ask, who was their other loss to? The Jets?!? That’s it, shut it down. Season’s over Titans, you can all go home. Sure, maybe it’s unfair to judge a team by one bad performance, but some besmirchings are hard to ignore. Vince Lombardi said it best, “One loss doesn’t define a team. Unless we’re talking about a loss to the Jets. Pew ew! Them guys are stinky like a diaper. A used diaper, of course. Ya know, one that’s filled with baby shit?” At this point all the Titans can do is keep winning and hope that everyone forgets about their ignominious defeat. Easier said than done though, some smells just don’t go away.
Cincinnati at New York Jets
This looks like a classic trap game scenario for the Bengals. They just had a huge win over the Ravens, and they have a game against intrastate and division rivals Cleveland next week. Plopped right down in the middle like a mangy stray dog that wondered into your house and jumped into bed with you are the Jets. Yes, it certainly looks like a trap game. But it’s not, because it’s Halloween baby! That’s the Bengals' holiday! Their original owner Paul Brown liked All Hallow’s Eve so much that he patterned the team’s colors after the holiday. A lot of people think that Cincinnati’s colors are orange and black to match a bengal tiger, but nope it’s all about Halloween. Another reason that Cincy couldn't possibly blow this one is because the Jets are starting Mike White at quarterback. That’s right, the man that brought you School of Rock and White Lotus and 6th place finisher on The Amazing Race is going to be under center for New York. Go get em pal!
Los Angeles Rams at Houston
The Rams almost dumped the couch last Sunday against Detroit (Look, I’m tired of “shit the bed” alright? I’m going with “dumped the couch” from now on). Perhaps LA’s poor performance was because they were looking ahead to this one ... against the Texans. Or maybe they were so bored by the fact that they had to play the Giants, Lions, and Texans in a row that they just phoned one in. You know, like when you’re on a long, boring road trip, so you just activate your car’s auto-drive. Then you remember your car doesn’t have auto-drive, so you grab the wheel right before you plow into a herd of cattle and steer yourself to safety. Cattle? Steer? Uh yeah, sounds like these guys are ready for Houston. “But those two words were just in your analogy, they have nothing to do with the Rams.” SOUNDS LIKE THESE GUYS ARE READY FOR HOUSTON.
New England at Los Angeles Chargers
The Chargers have had almost two full weeks now to stew over their blowout loss to the Ravens. And in that time the Ravens got blown out. Man, that must feel like a double blow out. That’ll cost you extra at Dry Bar. But when you see your hair, it’s very worth every penny. And the confidence you gain from it is priceless. So I guess I’m saying that the Chargers should all go get their hair done before the game to regain their swagger.
Jacksonville at Seattle
The Jags got their first win of the season a couple weeks ago in London. That’s enough, right? No need to keep trying to win now. They’ve ensured they won’t suffer the embarrassment of a winless season, now they can just build to the draft. Why stand in the way of other teams that are in win now mode like the 2-5 Seahawks? The honorable thing to do would be to take their losses with a smile and wish their fellow gents good luck. And that’s just what Jacksonville will do, because there’s no one more honorable than their coach, Urban Meyer! ... These assholes are going to keep trying to win aren’t they?
Washington at Denver
Earlier this week the Broncos traded a 2024 6th round pick for a LB named Kenny Young and a 7th round pick. Where does that put that player’s value? He and a 7th round pick are worth a 6th rounder. Is he the equivalent of like a 9th round pick? The draft doesn’t even go that high anymore. Also, is there an inflation rate on draft picks? Is a 2024 6th worth the same as a 2022 6th? I guess the 2022 would be more valuable because you get the return sooner. That makes Kenny young even less valuable. He’s like a late 10th round pick. And again, I should point out that we’re making up fake rounds in the draft to try to equate to this actual player’s worth. I’ll bet he goes for like 20 tackles this week just to shove it down out throats. If so, maybe Denver could sell high and flip him for a 2029 5th.
Tampa Bay at New Orleans
After watching my first full Saints game of the season, I can confirm what I already suspected: Sean Payton is deadly afraid of his own quarterback. So much so that he’s made Jameis Winston into a game manager. That’s an unforgivable crime against the football public if you ask me. We’re here for the picks, the tuddies, the inexplicable fumbles. Instead we’re getting screen passes and check downs. And sure, it all seems to be working well enough for now, New Orleans is 4-2. But what happens when they lose a couple games in a row? Maybe Jameis gets that itch again and starts flinging the ball to anyone who wants it. Yeah Sean Payton will try to bench him, but guess what, Jameis is bigger than him, so he’ll just beat up his coach and put himself back in. We’re operating on playground rules now baby! Man I can’t wait. Now we just need the Saints to pick up a couple L’s. This Sunday should be a step in the right direction.
I agree Cris, it doesn't feel fair to make a pick on this game without knowing Prescott's status, so I won't do it! Or rather, I'll pick for both possibilities.
Dak: Cowboys 30-23
No Dak: Vikings 31-17
New York Giants at Kansas City
It’s a match-up of last place teams on Monday Night Football! Though, to be fair, the Chiefs are tied for 3rd in the AFC West. And over in the NFC East, the Giants are tied for ... 2nd?!? Turns out everybody other than the Cowboys is 2-5. Kansas City should be very motivated to get moving in the right direction with a win. But if sole possession of 2nd place in the NFC East is up for grabs expect New York to come out with their hair on fire. Then they'll freak out and dunk their heads in the Gatorade jug to put out the flames. For the rest of the game they'll feel off because their heads will be gross and sticky. That's just the type of opening you can't give the Chiefs, even in their current state.
We’ve seen these teams have a couple of playoff
classics in Glendale in the past, and who knows we may see another in a few months.
But we’re not there yet, so what’s the recent regular season history
between these squads look like? Well, they’ve played 8 times this
century, and the average margin of victory in those games is 18.5
points. Great, this game’s gonna suck! The league should act now and
flex a competitive game like Philly/Detroit into this spot. Just make
sure you don’t put this one on the radio while driving, I wouldn’t want
you to fall asleep and plow into a restaurant or something. But if you
did and got taken to court I’m sure you could explain to the judge that
you were listening to a Packers/Cardinals regular season game. “Say no
more,” the judge would proclaim as they rule in your favor, and actually
make the restaurant owner pay YOU.
Aaron Rodgers caused a bit of a stir last week when, after rushing for a crucial fourth quarter touchdown, he shouted at the Chicago crowd, “I own you, I’ve owned you my whole life!” I wasn’t too offended by the taunting, but it definitely struck a chord with me, because I’ve said the sameexact thing while tearfully shoving clothes into a donation bin. It’s such an emotional process for me that I usually go back to check on them on collection day, so I can see them one last time. And then, without fail, the employees will pluck out my old friends, give them a few sniffs, and start shaking their head as if to say, “No. There are too many farts in these. Smells like years and years of some of the worst farts I’ve ever come across. And that includes the t-shirts.” It’s a lot to infer from a head shake, but I’m fairly certain that’s the message being conveyed. At that point I go yank the garments out of the heartless non-profit workers’ hands. When I get home I put everything back in the closet and whisper, “I own you. I’ve owned you my whole life.”
Kansas City at Tennessee
How long has Janoris Jenkins been nicknamed “Jackrabbit?” I’d never heard him called that before Monday. Then the MNF crew proceeded to say “Jackrabbit Jenkins” approximately 46 times. Maybe it’s negligence on my part, but I feel like I watch a good amount of football, and this caught me completely off guard. How many more secret nicknames are lurking out there, waiting to be unleashed upon the world? Are there any more in this game? Maybe a Tightrope Tannehill, or Madman Mahomes, or Jostlin’ Cock Jones. Who’s to say? That’s the most intriguing part of this, we have no idea what’s coming next. But it’s probably Jostlin’ Cock Jones, don’t you think?
Atlanta at Miami
How often does Matt Ryan think about how far away he is from leading a Super Bowl 28-3? It has to be every game. Just consider the amount of effort he’ll put into trying to beat the Dolphins here in Week 7, then imagine that thought creeping into his head, “Even if we win this game, we’ll be 3-3. We probably won’t win the division over Tampa. We’re a long shot to make the playoffs at all. Even if we do we’ll have to win three games on the road to get to the Super Bowl. And then if we do that we’d have to play the game of our lives to get up 28-3 in the second half. And if all of that comes together, we still might lose. Oh great, while I just thought about all that I stood paralyzed with ennui and got sacked. This sucks. Football’s no fun.” See what I mean? Sad stuff.
New York Jets at New England
Oh right, the Jets. Did anybody else think they might just not come back after their bye week? Like the NFL called them up and said, “Don’t worry, that’s enough.” The Jets reply, “Are you sure? We've got a few things up our sleeves for these upcoming games. We could maybe even win a couple. We’ll try really hard, we promise!” To which the NFL would just say, “Ssshhhh. Sshhh shhh ssshh,” while holding the Jets’ head and petting their hair.
Carolina at New York Giants
Last week against the Rams Daniel Jones had one of those, “So you wanna be an NFL quarterback?” games. You know, when the TV producers will air a highlight package of the QB getting hit and throwing interceptions and the color analyst will say, “So you wanna be an NFL quarterback?” But I don’t know why they keep asking me that. No! I don’t want to be one. At least not for like the last 20+ years. And with each passing season I am less and less interested considering that I’m past my would-be prime at this point. I hope both Jones and Sam Darnold play well this Sunday, mainly because I don’t want to get hassled by whoever the announcers are.
Cincinnati at Baltimore
I have to say, this is probably the marquee match-up on Sunday's schedule. It's been a while since the Bengals have been in the gsme of the day. See? So long that I couldn’t even type it correctly. My extremities wouldn’t let me. I’m leaving the typo! It's a matter of principle. This one's for you Cincinnati! Hmm, just heard back from the Bengals organization, and they said they didn't care about my gesture, weren't even sure how it was complimentary to them, and told me to never contact anyone in their building again. What a bunch of asdholes.
Philadelphia at Las Vegas
After a hectic lead up to Sunday, I assumed the Raiders would be a little out of sorts last week. Boy was I wrong. And it serves me right, I should’ve expected more from a Rich Bisaccia coached team. Bisaccia always has his guys ready to play. I heard from at least 20 Vegas players who said they’d run through a wall for him. 10 more said they’d break down a door. The other 20 didn’t get back to me. They were probably passed out from practicing so hard or attempting to plow through some other man made object not listed above. Now, would I suspect that this match-up against a struggling Philly team is the perfect spot for a letdown? No! These are Bisaccia boys! (Also the Raiders are playing the Giants next week, so it’s not like they’ll be looking ahead)
Detroit at Los Angeles Rams
Jared Goff is rolling back into LA with an 0-6 Lions squad. Here’s how I see the conversation going:
Goff: “Miss me?”
Rams: “Oh. Uhh ... hmm. Yeah, hey good to see you. You look well.”
Goff: “Really? I’m pretty bruised up. Been getting hit a lot.”
Rams: “Oh, we didn’t even notice.”
Goff: “There’s like 3 on my face alone. Hard to not see, actually.”
Goff: “You guys need a back-up?”
Goff: “Pfft, just kidding.”
Goff: “Man, I cant wait to kick your ass.”
Houston at Arizona
Isn’t this just the same as the last game? An NFC West team about to destroy some poor bastards. We already have a watered down schedule thanks to the six teams on bye, and now we have to deal with this junk? Speaking of junk, on Sunday Deandre Hopkins tweeted a highlight of his with the caption “Hopsational.” Don’t get me wrong, it was an impressive play, my problem is solely with the caption. Was this supposed to be a play on words? What am I missing here? Are we just going to allow any and everybody to slap the start of their name on “sensational” and accept it? I, for one, vote no. Unless it’s something totally Eriktastic.
Chicago at Tampa Bay
Perhaps the nadir of Tom Brady’s career came last season when he didn’t know what down it was at the end of the Bucs’ loss to the Bears. He looked like a fool, and his team was a pathetic 3-2. His grand experiment had failed. And we laughed. Oh how we laughed at Tom Brady. After that he went on to win the Super Bowl, effectively holding a mirror up to us and saying, “Laugh at yourself you fools!” And he’s right, we’re pathetic. I don’t know about you, but I’ve won zero Super Bowls. Who am I to dare tell Brady what down it is? Let alone laugh at him. Please forgive me Thomas. (Don’t worry guys, I’m trying a new tactic where I’m overly flattering in hopes that it will end up with Brady’s abject failure. It’s not logical, but I’ve tried the other way for so long with undesirable results.)
Indianapolis at San Francisco
It hasn't been an ideal start for either of these teams, but there's still plenty of time for them to turn it around. One will take a step in the right direction on Sunday night. Who will it be? Don't ask me, let's hear from Cris Collinsworth himself.Confirmed, Aaron Neville, still alive.
New Orleans at Seattle
Bad news regarding the Geno Smith experience: he’s had game-ruining turnovers in consecutive games (Though I should point out that the first one was due to Tyler Lockett flopping on his route to buy a call that didn’t come, and the second was caused by T.J. Watt who should have been ejected for punching Alex Collins earlier in the evening). Good news: the Seahawks were right there in both contests. I mean hey, you can’t have a truly devastating turnover when you’re losing by 20 in the fourth quarter, right? It’s better to have competed and blown it than to never have competed at all. Still, it couldn’t hurt to actually win one.
Baker Mayfield has been ruled out for this game after re-injuring his should on Sunday. I don’t think the top brass at Fox was wishing for a more negative prognosis for Mayfield, but you just know they didn’t want him playing in this game. All along they were drooling over the possibility of a Case Keenum revenge game! As is the rest of America. I think we all remember, and look back fondly upon, that one season he played with the Broncos. Ya know, back in 2018, or was it 2016? ‘98? No, I think that was still Elway. Anyway, Keenum is no doubt dying to get some payback on Denver after their acrimonious break-up. Or did it not get ugly? Now that I think about it maybe he just had a one year contract and that was that. Both parties went their separate ways. Or did he get traded? Look, no one knows the real truth, the guy doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page. Despite that fact, Keenum is ratings gold. And when you get him facing one of his 6 former teams, you might as well name your price, because the advertisers are gonna be begging you for a slot.
How excited must Urban Meyer be? He has a whole bye week following this game to spend in the UK after he inevitably doesn’t fly home with his team! There’s gotta be at least one Buckeyes bar over there, right? Methinks the British Ohio St. fans would be more than welcoming if you catch my cheeky drift. Uh oh, I just looked it up, there is a Buckeyes bar in the UK, but only one; it’s located in the hills of Scotland and the only patrons are sheep. Hey, go get ‘em Urban!
Green Bay at Chicago
If the Bears win this game they’re in first place. How did that happen? I had them written off after their rookie quarterback looked lousy in his first start. What do you mean that’s not fair?!? If someone doesn’t show up and dominate from day one how am I supposed to think they'll ever improve? I expect newborn children to come out speaking in full, intelligent sentences, like the smart gremlin in Gremlins 2. Or I guess the babies in the Look Who’s Talking films if you want a more analog comparison. But I think we can all agree that those kids weren’t actually talking within the world of the movies, we were just hearing their inner monologue. Although, can’t the babies hear each other? Well that doesn’t make sense ... So anyway, as I was saying, good on the Bears for righting their ship. I wouldn’t be shocked if they got the win this Sunday. I mean if you’ve seen babies and gremlins talk is there anything left that can surprise you?
Cincinnati at Detroit
The Lions lost 19-17 on a last-second field goal again last week. That’s twice so far this season. Man, 19-17, that’s rough. This season has been a real battle for Detroit, what with all the 19-17 losses. If I had to compare it to a war movie I guess I’d say ...Platoon. Just a futile effort from the start, filled with heartbreak. Don’t be surprised if Jared Goff drops to two knees and goes out Willem DeFoe style in the final game. Meanwhile, Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow has had some troubles of his own, having to visit the hospital last Sunday with a throat contusion. I wouldn’t be too worried if I were Burrow though, Johnny Moxon was able to play in the 2nd half after suffering a similar injury at the hands of his coach, literally. Burrow has a whole week to recover, he should be fine. (Side note: that’s enough movie references for one week. No more, I swear.)
Houston at Indianapolis
On Monday night the refs royally screwed the Colts out of a 98 yard defensive touchdown because of what they deemed to be an illegal “forward” pass. The call was based on the fact that the ball was pitched at the Indy 24 yard line and received at the 25, despite the fact that the ball was clearly tossed backwards. How can it go forward but be thrown backwards? It’s called Galilean Transformation damn it! And we’ve been over this before! Apparently by the letter of the law the refs made the correct call. But that doesn’t make it right. If a ball is clearly lateraled we must allow for physics to run its course. If we don’t we’re no better than the Philistines. Is that what you want? To be sub-Philistine?!? Yes I know that Philistines are more skeptics of art and culture, not science, I was using it ironically. What do you take me for a Philistine? Yes I know how irony works! Lay off me. You’re being a real pill-istine.
Los Angeles Rams at New York Giants
Daniel Jones may not be available for the Giants due to concussion protocol. On the surface that would seem like an advantage for the Rams, but I’m not so sure they want to face another backup quarterback after Geno Smith’s pseudo-dominant performance against them last Thursday. Sure LA still came out on top in the end, but I think America was united in their belief that Geno was the true hero of the night. Now, is NY backup Mike Glennon on the level of Geno Smith? No, few are. Yet he still may possess enough craftiness to flummox the Rams. Or he’ll get hit so hard that his famously long neck spins around like an owl. Then he’s so bewildered that he actually starts believing he’s an owl and eats a mouse he finds on the sidelines. Oof, for Glennon’s sake (and all of ours, really) I hope we see the first option on Sunday.
Kansas City at Washington
Patrick Mahomes hasn’t lost more than 4 games in a season since he’s been a starter. The 2021 Chiefs are already at 3. It’s looking very likely that this will be the worst season of Mahomes’s career. It also seems likely that the Chiefs will get their issues sorted out in the second half of the season and then win three straight road games on their way to the Super Bowl. That’s right, they’re doing this just to mess with us, and I won’t hear otherwise until they’re eliminated from contention once and for all. And even then I might not buy it. There could be two completely different teams playing in Super Bowl LVI and then Mahomes shows up out of nowhere with a minute left to win the game. It won’t count of course, and he’ll be escorted off the field for trespassing. But man, it’ll be pretty amazing to watch.
Minnesota at Carolina
The Vikings have now had 3 games decided by last second field goals. Two made, one missed. One win, two losses. If things had gone just a bit different the Vikings could be 4-1, or 1-4. They’ve really taught us a lot about the sliding doors nature of the NFL, and maybe life in general. Or maybe it’s more like one of those rotating doors, because this league never stops spinning baby! And it’s all about timing. One wrong step and you slam your face into the glass in front of everybody you work with. They laugh hysterically, and you join them because you want to seem like a good sport, but you can feel the blood start to ooze down from your forehead. Then everyone else sees it and stops laughing, and now it’s just you, your face a cackling crimson mask. First everybody just thought you were a klutz, but now it’s something much much worse. So yeah, be careful Vikings!
Los Angeles Chargers at Baltimore
The Ravens mounted an amazing comeback in their 31-25 OT win on Monday. But to me the true story of the night was that they failed to rush for 100 yards. One week after causing a kerfuffle by desperately trying to extend the streak, they just couldn’t find it within them to make it one more game. Sure they got the win, but what’s a win worth if you didn’t even rush for 100 yards in the process? Most people wouldn’t care, but clearly the Ravens did. And I wouldn’t be shocked if they totally collapse now that their identity is shattered. Meanwhile, the Chargers keep tempting their past fate late in games and living to tell the tale. Their old identity is shattered, and that’s a good thing. Then again their newfound ability to close games could always unravel at a moment's notice. That’s the magic of the Chargers.
Arizona at Cleveland
Could this be a potential Super Bowl preview? I mean probably not, but it might be more possible than ever before. The Cardinals are 5-0 and while the Browns fell to 3-2 last week I still expect them to get to the playoffs. But come on, we couldn’t actually have a Cardinals vs. Browns Super Bowl. That would be the Super Bowl match-up in some futuristic movie that’s trying to make a point of how fucked up society has become. (Whoops, I said no more movie references. Though this isn’t a specific movie I’m talking about, just hypothetical. At least I’m not aware of an actual movie in which the Cardinals and Browns compete in the Super Bowl. If it exists I’d like to see it. Hey maybe I’ll be the one to make it! It’ll be called Cardinal Brown. People will think it’s about some inter-planetary clergyman, but really it will just be a full-length simulated game on Madden.)
Las Vegas at Denver
Well this Raiders season has taken a bit of turn lately, huh? No need to rehash here what’s been rehashed ad nauseam in every other news outlet (yes that means I consider this a news outlet). Instead let’s focus on the future, and Vegas’s new interim coach, Rich Bisaccia. Promoting him was a smart move for a franchise looking to avoid further controversy. I say that with no knowledge of this man’s character, but by looking at him I’d guess that he’s never sent an e-mail in his life. So already the Raiders have to feel more secure. Also, I have it on good authority that Bisaccia loved the Michael Sam pick and thinks Roger Goodell is tough as hell
Dallas at New England
I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the first game to be called by both the A team announcers from CBS and Fox. How could it not be? Are you telling me Romo or Aikman isn’t going to be there to see the Cowboys finally beat the Patriots for the first time since 1996? This is a marquee moment for America’s Team baby! This is a national event. We all must show it the reverence it deserves. In fact, let’s stop beating around the bush and call this what it is: the Super Bowl. That’s right, this is the Super Bowl now. All the other teams can play out the rest of their schedules if they want, but this is the only one that counts.
Seattle at Pittsburgh
Safe to say that this is not exactly the match-up NBC thought they were getting when they scheduled this game months ago. But such is life. And no one knows more about life, and football than Cris Collinsworth. Let's get his take on this one:
But why did he still send me the video?
Buffalo at Tennessee
When most people see this match-up they think Music City Miracle. Not me, I see it and think about eating the rich and re-allocating the world’s wealth among the people. That has nothing to do with these teams, but that’s just how twisted I am guys. A lot of people tell me I remind them of Tyler Durden from Fight Club. (Damn it, another movie reference! Ok, now I guarantee that’s the last one, because I’m done writing ...
Through five weeks of the 2021 season, the Eagles have proven, without a shadow of a doubt, that they can beat NFC South teams. They’re 2-0 against the Falcons and Panthers, and 0-3 against everybody else. That’s not great news for Philly, considering they only get four games against the South this season. But this week just so happens to be their third. And here comes another lamb to the slaughter, the Buccaneers. “Baaah baaah” Brady will whimper as the Eagles pound him and his cohorts into the turf. You simply do not show up to play the Eagles as an NFC South team and make it out alive. That being said, what do you guys think, Tampa by like 10-14? Yeah, same here.
This game is scheduled to take place in London, but is there any chance UK officials will re-institute the travel ban before Sunday? Sorry love, no Yanks allowed. You lot can sod off ‘cos this match is right shit, innit? Innit?!? And look, I wouldn’t blame them for trying to get out of hosting this one. Who decided to make the Jets and Falcons two of our grand ambassadors this season? I’d bet good money that each and every American attending this game on Sunday will have to turn to the Brits around them and say something to the effect of, “Trust me, it’s usually better than this.”
Green Bay at Cincinnati
Both teams come into this match-up at 3-1, so it could be a heated battle. Though, considering that each have recent double digit wins over Pittsburgh, instead of talking trash on the field I’m guessing they’ll all just be discussing how much the Steelers suck. “Yeah, what’s with those guys? Hey did you just take the ball from me? What the hell?!? I thought we were having a friendly chat. Felt like we were really getting to know each other. I was just going to ask if you wanted to get in on this timeshare I have. It’s a more sound investment than people think. I just went to the presentation to get free Cyclones tickets, but once I heard everything this place had to offer I couldn’t pass it up. That’s how good of a deal it is! And I wanted you to be a part of it! The Cyclones! Cincinnati's minor league hockey team. You've never heard of the Cyclones?!?” And again, just to be clear, this whole “conversation” is happening during a live fumble return.
Detroit at Minnesota
I thought the Lions had a good chance to get over the hump last week in Chicago, but it didn’t happen. Instead they played maybe their worst game yet and now find themselves as one of only two winless teams in the league. On the bright side they're the only one with a head coach that still wants to be in the NFL. Now they have to face a Vikings team that is once again in desperate need of a win. It seems like we’re going to be saying that about Minnesota a lot this season, until eventually they’ll finish 7-10. Hey what the heck Vikings? You didn’t even do anything with those wins you kept saying you needed! Those wins could’ve gone to underprivileged kids. Ya know, like the Lions. Hey they’re making a break for it! Get ‘em!
Denver at Pittsburgh
Ben Roethlisberger has the lowest QBR among qualified quarterbacks that aren’t rookies. The Steelers offense ranks 27th in total yards, and 28th in points per game. Suffice it to say that these ain’t your grandma’s Steelers. Oh what, you thought I was going to say “grandpa” wow. Woooow. So in your world grandmas can’t watch football? Shame on you. It’s 2021, time for you to ... What’s that? Oh, she was a Browns fan? Buried in her favorite jersey? So your problem was less about the use of grandma, and more about the ... Got it, got it. Hey look, I’m sorry about earlier. From what you’ve told me your grandma sounds like a real neat lady. I think if I’d been alive back in her day we would’ve got along just fine. Who knows, maybe I even could’ve been your grandpa. Oh why is that such a weird thing to say?!? Shut up. That’s not that weird. You’re weird. Shut up.
Miami at Tampa Bay
After his long-anticipated return to New England last week it’s certainly possible that Tom Brady will still have an emotional hangover when the Dolphins come to town. Well get ready for another wave of the feels Tommy, because now you have to face Jacoby Brissett! Remember him?!? That guy that was one of your back-ups for a couple years? That’s riiiight! He knows all your tricks, and he’s been spilling the beans to his new cohorts in Miami. Get ready for a defense that knows you better than you know yourself TB12! In all seriousness though, I think Brady would have to have an actual hangover for the Bucs to be in any trouble here; and I think he’s dried out since the championship parade.
New Orleans at Washington
Washington has a knack for dramatic wins over lousy teams. First, a last-second , game-winning field goal to beat the Giants, then a touchdown with under a minute left to top the Falcons. But can they pull out a similar scintillating victory over the Saints? Depends on just how lousy New Orleans. I don’t think they’re as bad as the aforementioned Washington victims, which means the Football Team may be out of luck. Speaking of, I’m not sure they’ll be favored in another game until Week 15 when they play at Philly. Between now and then their schedule is as follows: KC, @GB, @DEN, TB, @CAR, SEA, @LV, DAL. Oh wait, I just remembered that they’ll get Ryan Fitzpatrick back at some point, so they’ll definitely be able to upset some quality opponents. They’ll also lose a few games even worse than they would have. But either way it ought to be a good time.
Philadelphia at Carolina
The Panthers seem halfway decent, and that could go a long way considering their soft schedule. Granted, it’s early, but looking ahead I wouldn’t rule out a 10-7 record. Months ago I would’ve said there’s no way. Of course, the main reason I would’ve said that was because the NFL schedule was still 16 games at the time, so that record would have been impossible. As for the Eagles, after a blowout win over Atlanta in the opener, Philly has settled into the level of lousiness that we all expected from them this season. Looking at their schedule the rest of the way I’d guess they’ll finish around 5-12. Of course these prognostications are contingent on the Panthers winning this game. If that doesn’t happen my predictions are null and void. I also reserve the right up until Week 18 to guess a team’s final record. Trying to do so any further out is truly a fool’s errand. I already feel ridiculous for my attempts.
Tennessee at Jacksonville
Ever since he’s arrived in Jacksonville Urban Meyer has seemed like he’s had his thumb up his own butt. Fittingly he’s now reached a new low thanks to his thumb being up someone else’s. Meanwhile, the Titans are coming off an embarrassing loss to the Jets, and man, if they follow that up with a loss to the Jags ... Well they’ll still be in first place in the AFC South. It’s a pretty sweet divij.
New England at Houston
After his team lost 40-0 to the Bills, Texans coach David Culley attempted to protect rookie fill-in quarterback Davis Mills by saying, "You could put Joe Montana out there today, and the way we played, you're not going to have any success on offense." But could they have? Like was that on the table but they opted for Mills? Also, does he mean Montana now, in 2021? If so, I agree, he wouldn’t have been much help. As for the Patriots, they’re coming off a heartbreaking loss to Tom Brady and the Bucs. A defeat which prompted their rookie quarterback Mac Jones to say after the game, “We don’t do moral victories.” Right, because the first thing they teach you in New England is to abandon your morals. Seems like this one will be a legitimate victory for the Patriots, so Jones will have nothing to worry about.
Chicago at Las Vegas
Bears coach Matt Nagy has officially declared that rookie Justin Fields will be the starting quarterback regardless of Andy Dalton’s injury status going forward. Clearly the plans all along were to start Fields eventually, but for the Bears organization to act like he showed them enough in his two starts is laughable. Haha. See? Told you it was laughable. Here are Fields' numbers so far: 25-52, 347yds, 0 TDs, 2INTs, and he’s taken 12 sacks. That’s almost one sack for every two completions. Maybe taking those repeated hits has displayed a toughness that Nagy is looking for. But if toughness was all that made for a great quarterback then Rick “Crutches” McCutcheon (the only quarterback in NFL history to play a full game on crutches) would be a household name. Instead he’s been lost to time. I only pray that a similar fate doesn’t befall young Mr. Fields.
Cleveland at Los Angeles Chargers
Oh boy, it’s a matchup of 3-1 teams! Big deal! Half the AFC is 3-1. Ok, not half, but 7 of the 16 teams, so pretty close. What is impressive is that the Browns have given up only 13 combined points over the last two weeks. I don’t care who you’re playing, only surrendering 13 points over two games is something to be proud of. Ok fine, maybe if their opponents had been two separate teams of abducted children who were told they needed to score at least 10 points each in order to ever see their families again. If that were the case, outlandish as it may seem, then I would concede that the Cleveland Browns should not be proud of themselves. Good for those kids for getting something on the board though. A feather in their cap if nothing else.
New York Giants at Dallas
When the Giants won the coin toss in overtime last week Jabril Peppers (New York’s designated toss-caller) acted as if the Giants already had the game won. He knows his quarterback is Daniel Jones, right? But the weirdest part is, he was actually right! The Giants went right down the field and scored the winning touchdown. Could this be the beginning of a new, more confident Daniel Jones? A guy who doesn't fumble six times a game? A guy who you look at and say, “Yeah sure, he could win this game.” Instead of, “I think that guy just crapped himself. I hope they get a shot of his pants soon. Come on, show us his ass! Show us his ass!” I’m going to answer all of those questions with a firm: I dunno, probably not.
San Francisco at Arizona
Believe it or not the Cardinals are the only undefeated team in the league. Impressive. But talk to me after the 7th game. Why the 7th? That’s been their line of demarcation the last two seasons. Through the first seven games in 2019 and 2020 their combined record is 8-5-1. For the remainder of those seasons they’re 5-13. That drop in performance could be attributed to injury problems for Kyler Murray, so it’s probably silly to assume that Arizona will automatically get worse starting with the eighth game. But it’s fair to question whether or not Murray can stay healthy and play at this level for an entire season. Hey, speaking of quarterbacks who can’t stay healthy, Jimmy Garoppolo may or may not play in this game. And as is usually the case regarding Garoppolo, I’m not sure if that matters.
Buffalo at Kansas City
Ohhhh baby, here we go again, it's a rematch last season's AFC Championship game and I am just too jazzed ... Wait a minute, what am I doing?You don't want to hear this from me. Let's just turn it over to Collinsworth:
Leave the gun, take Collin-oli.
Indianapolis at Baltimore
Last week the Ravens were dead set on tying the record for consecutive 100 yard rushing games by a team. So much so that they ran the ball while up 16 with :03 left. And it worked! That run got them to 102 yards! They did it! Congrats Ravens, you’re now tied for a record that nobody knew about! And this week you just might set the new mark! And by the end of the season none of us will remember it! But it was worth it! We all kind of think you’re pricks now; but it was still totally worth it!