This week starts the last push for the playoffs for some teams. For other teams, they are trying to end the year on a good note. With that being said, here are my NFL Predictions for Week 14 in the NFL.
Indianapolis vs, Tennessee
The struggling Indianapolis Colts travel to take on a floundering Tennessee Titan team. QB Peyton Manning hasn't been his normal self these past few weeks. I expect him to snap out of it this week because the Titan pass rush has been largely ineffective the last few games. Manning should have all day to hit his receivers. For the Titans offense, they get WR Kenny Britt back tonight. They will score some points and snap out of their TD drought, but they won't be able to score enough points to keep up with the Colts.
Prediction: Indianapolis 27, Tennessee 17
Buffalo vs. Cleveland
The Bills head to the Dog Pound to take on a Cleveland Brown team that has been improving all season. QB Ryan Fitzpatrick and his slew of receivers had some trouble against the Vikings last week, but I expect them to recover and put up a good showing. The Bills strength are their WRs and the Browns weakness on defense is their secondary. QB Jake Delhomme gets the start again for an injure Colt McCoy. Expect the Bills secondary to make some big plays because of Delhomme's propensity for throwing multiple picks in games.
Prediction: Buffalo 27, Cleveland 16
Detroit vs. Green Bay
Green Bay travels to Motown to take on an improving team in the Lions. QB Aaron Rodgers picked through the 49ers secondary last week and I expect him to do the same to the Lions, who will be without CB Alphonso Smith. The Lions also don't create a lot of pass rush, so expect big plays from the Packers. QB Drew Stanton brought some life to the Lions offense last week. I expect Packers defensive coordinator to throw multiple looks at him this week to confuse him. The confusion of Stanton will free up OLB Clay Matthews to make plays. If Stanton is to be successful, he must find Calvin "Megatron" Johnson as many times possible.
Prediction: Green Bay 30, Detroit 20
New York Giants vs. Minnesota
The Giants head to the Midwest to take on an underwhelming Minnesota team. The Vikings look like they will be without the services of QB Brett Farve this week, ending his consecutive games streak. QB Tavaris Jackson offers some mobility that will give the Giants some problems. If he protects the football and makes smart decisions, he could be very effective. But ultimately, he will need RB Adrian Peterson to produce. QB Eli Manning may get WRs Steve Smith back this week. If Smith plays, look for Eli to be more comfortable in the pocket and look for the Giants offense to have more continuity. The Vikings played well on defense last week, but this week they will not be able to get to the quarterback.
Prediction: NY Giants 31, Minnesota 21
Cincinnati vs. Pittsburgh
This game pits two teams going in opposite directions against each other. QB Carson Palmer has been a turnover waiting to happen this year. Against a tough Steelers defense, he will have to carry the offense because the Steelers will shut down the running game. QB Ben Roethlisburger had a tough game physically last week. This game should be less taxing on him because RB Rashard Mendenhall should devour the Bengals defense.
Prediction: Pittsburgh 24, Cincinnati 10
Tampa Bay vs. Washington
The Bucs travel to our nation's capital to take on the Redskins. QB Josh Freeman got outdueled last week by QB Matt Ryan. He should be able to hang with Donovan McNabb more this week by virtue of the Redskins defense. Expect WR Mike Williams to make some big plays. For QB Donovan McNabb, he has to have TE Chris Cooley and WR Anthony Armstrong show up. If they don't, then the Redskins will be left with the running game and the Bucs have been playing well against the run as of late.
Prediction: Tampa Bay 24, Washington 20
Atlanta vs. Carolina
Atlanta travels to Carolina after their big win last week. Expect the Falcons to come out running the football against one of the NFL's worst defenses. QB Matt Ryan should have plenty of open receivers by virtue of the Panthers having to commit so many people to the run. QB Jimmy Clausen will once again be running for his life. He needs for the Panther running game to show up or he will be taking shots all game long.
Prediction: Atlanta 27, Carolina 13
Oakland vs. Jacksonville
The Raiders travel cross-country to take on the surging Jags. QB Jason Campbell played well last week, but for the Raiders to win, they must have great production out of RB Darren McFadden. If McFadden and the running game isn't effective, then the Jags will be able to put more people in coverage to help their pass defense. Jaguars RB Maurice Jones-Drew has been playing incredible the last few weeks. Jones-Drew must continue to be the engine to this offense. If he plays well, the Jags win.
Prediction: Jacksonville 27, Oakland 20
St. Louis vs. New Orleans
The Rams travel to the Crescent City to take on the Saints. St. Louis leaned on the running game last week and they must continue to lean on RB Stephen Jackson and crew. The more effective the Rams are running the football, the less time the Saints have to score. For QB Drew Brees, the Saints have been clicking on offense the last few weeks and they must continue to stretch defenses and get great production from RB Chris Ivory. If the Rams don't control time of possession, then they could be in for a long day.
Prediction: New Orleans 31, St. Louis 16
Patriots vs. Bears
The Patriots travel to Soldier Field to take on a confident Chicago squad. The Bears have found balance on offense. If they are to win this game, QB Jay Cutler must accept the balanced attack and not try to force the action. For New England, they must continue to build on last week. They must hit the Bears defense with quick-hitting passes and they must continue to get production from RBs Danny Woodhead and Benjarvus Green-Ellis. This game should go down to the wire.
Prediction: New England 24, Chicago 21
Miami vs. New York Jets
The slumping Dolphins travel to New York to take on the Jets. Miami played tough last week, but in order for them to be successful, they must get better QB play from Chad Henne. If Henne doesn't play well, the Dolphins have no chance to win. The Jets got embarrassed on national TV last week, so I expect them to come out with fire this week. If the Dolphins can't stop the initial surge of Jets, this game could get ugly.
Prediction: NY Jets 27, Miami 13
Denver vs. Arizona
Denver travels to the desert to take on an atrocious Cardinal team. QB Kyle Orton has been getting help from RB Knowshon Moreno the last few weeks. Expect the roles to be reversed because of the change in coaches. Interim head coach Eric Studsville will commit to the run more this week, especially versus the Cardinals who are terrible against the run. QB John Skelton gets his 1st start this week. Expect the Broncos to pressure him into making some mistakes. This game isn't going to be aesthetically pleasing.
Prediction: Denver 23, Arizona 13
Kansas City vs. San Diego
Kansas City travels to San Diego in this big AFC West battle. The Charger got shut down last week, so expect them to come out blazing this game. QB Phillip Rivers should feast on a young Chiefs secondary. Rivers must also receive some help from the running back trio of Darren Sproles, Mike Tolbert and Ryan Matthews. For Kansas City, QB Brodie Croyle make the start for an injured Matt Cassel. Expect the Chiefs to lean heavily on their running game. Also expect safe throws for Croyle. The defense must step up for the Chiefs to win this game.
Prediction: San Diego 30, Kansas City 20
Eagles vs. Cowboys
The Eagles travel to Cowboy Stadium to take on a talented Cowboys team. QB Michael Vick has come down to Earth just a little the past few weeks, contributing 2 fumbles lost and 2 INTs the last few week. Expect Vick to take advantage of this Dallas defense's secondary. This game could be a big game for DeSean Jackson. QB Jon Kitna will need the runnng game to be effective. If the running game doesn't appear, Kitna will have to put the ball in the air and give playmakers like Eagles CB Asante Samuel more chances to make big plays.
Prediction: Philadelphia 34, Dallas 17
Ravens vs. Texans
The Ravens travel to Houston to play the slumping Texans. QB Joe Flacco should be able to torch the Texans secondary with his trio of receivers( Derrick Mason, TJ Housmanzadeh and Anquan Boldin ). If the Texans get no pass rush, this game could be even uglier for them. RB Arian Foster must continue his great play. He has been carrying this offense and he is the key to their play. If he plays well, expect QB Matt Schuab to have some chances to make some plays.
Prediction: Baltimore 24, Houston 17
These are my predictions for the week. If you would like to challenge me and my predictions, put your picks on here against mine. Good luck to my challengers.