NFL Picks Week 5
Last week's tally:
Peter King: 9-5 (38-24 on the season, a 613 win percentage)
Andrew Hamm: 10-4 (34-28, .548)
George Washington: 8-6 (28-34, .452)
Ryan Capps: 9-5 (38-24, .613)
Rick Olson: 10-4 (29-17, .630)
Ryan handed his picks in on time despite the fact that his wife Amber is overdue to deliver their first-yet-to-be-born. Bravo.
On with the picks, to the tune of Richmond's own Moruza.
Denver Broncons (2-2) at Baltimore Ravens (3-1)
- Peter King: Ravens. Great test for the NFL's passing-yards leader, Kyle Orton (1,419), who is on a silly 5,676-yard pace. Baltimore's secondary is playing far, far better than anyone thought it would. I see a good duel here, with Orton getting his yards and Baltimore getting the win.
- Andrew: Ravens. They showed me a lot last week against a very confident Steelers team. Orton is going to pass for a quarter-mile, but his running backs may end up with under 30 yards.
- George: Ravens.
- Ryan: Ravens.
- Rick: Ravens.
Jacksonville Jaguars (2-2) at Buffalo Bills (0-4)
- Peter King: Jaguars. Not exactly the game of the week. The NFL really was scraping for positive Bills info in the weekly game capsules written by the league's PR staff. Listen to this one: "Seven of WR-KR Roscoe Parrish's 10 receptions have been for first downs.'' Think about that for a second. Parrish is the Bills' speed guy. Seven of 10 receptions for first downs is actually a negative. Not to diss this game or anything.
- Andrew: Jaguars. I still think the Bills could challenge for 0-16. I think they might find a way to go 0-17, honestly.
- George: Bills.
- Ryan: Jaguars.
- Rick: Bills.
Chicago Bears (3-1) at Carolina Panthers (0-4)
- Peter King: Bears. Without the concussed Jay Cutler, missing the first game of his pro career due to injury, this one will be much closer than it should be. Todd Collins is going to need a very strong game from Matt Forte to avoid getting pummeled by the Panther rush.
- Andrew: Panthers. Upset special of the week. Carolina is 0-4, but they are neither stupid nor soft. Relax, Bears fans. Your team will be just fine. Next week.
- George: Panthers.
- Ryan: Panthers.
- Rick: Panthers.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-1) at Cincinnati Bengals (2-2)
- Peter King: Bengals. Rightfully, Carson Palmer has been targeted for the Bengals' bad start; he had a C-minus first month. But the offensive line and Cedric Benson need to gaze in the mirror Sunday in Cincinnati before this game and take some of the blame, too. Benson, the cornerstone of the Bengals running game, is rushing at a 3.3-yards-per-carry clip, a yard below last year. If that doesn't get fixed, neither will the Cincinnati offense.
- Andrew: Bengals. But they are in big trouble.
- George: Buccaneers.
- Ryan: Bengals.
- Rick: Bengals.
Atlanta Falcons (3-1) at Cleveland Browns (1-3)
- Peter King: Browns. Eric Mangini on this generation's Norm Bulaich, Browns jumbo back Peyton Hillis: "Even I avoid him in the hallway.'' I say Hillis eats enough of the clock against the Falcons to make this my upset special.
- Andrew: Falcons. I'm not buying it, King.
- George: Browns. George, however is.
- Ryan: Falcons.
- Rick: Falcons.
St. Louis Rams (2-2) at Detroit Lions (0-4)
- Peter King: Rams. Toughest game to pick this weekend. Don't laugh. It is. I think the Lions shut down Steven Jackson, but Sam Bradford makes enough throws to put the Rams over .500 for the first time in October since the Cro-Magnon walked the earth.
- Andrew: The Lions are playing tough; they're a good team for 0-4. But I think the Rams are better. I like Sam Bradford a ton. They're still going to be lucky to finish 6-10, but memories of when they were 3-2 will keep Detroit warm in January, looking forward to a bright 2011.
- George: Lions.
- Ryan: Rams.
- Rick: Lions.
Now listening to Living Colour's Time's Up because Ray and Sera made me think of "Elvis Is Dead."
Kansas City Chiefs (3-0) at Indianapolis Colts (2-2)
- Peter King: Colts. I'll bet you a triple latte that the Chiefs win time-of-possession and lose the game. The only way K.C. wins is to pound Thomas Jones and use Jamaal Charles and Dexter McCluster as speed men outside -- and to hope Peyton Manning gets his hands on the ball only six or seven possessions. Of course, that's been the formula of about 70 percent of the teams that have played the Colts, and you see how far that has gotten foes.
- Andrew: Colts. I wouldn't take that bet, Pete. As much as the Lions are a good 0-4, the Chiefs are a lucky 3-0. The last unbeaten goes down this Sunday.
- George: Chiefs.
- Ryan: Colts.
- Rick: Colts.
New York Giants (2-2) at Houston Texans (3-1)
- Peter King: Texans. We could see 700 yards passing in this game. I can't see the Giants' defensive front embarrassing a good Houston offensive line the way it did Chicago's last week, though.
- Andrew: Texans. I would love to watch this game.
- George: Giants.
- Ryan: Texans.
- Rick: Giants.
Green Bay Packers (3-1) at Washington Redskins (2-2)
- Peter King: Packers. Never thought after a month of the season I'd see this yards-per-attempt comparison between Donovan McNabb, with a poor wideout corps, and Aaron Rodgers, with a very good one: McNabb 7.92, Rodgers 7.70. Rodgers, in my mind, has to find Greg Jennings.
- Andrew: Okay, I have picked every Redskins game wrong all year. They have lost the games I thought they would win and won the games I was sure they would lose. The team I know best in the whole damn league and I have missed every single pick. The logical thing to do would be to pick against them for the rest of the year, thus ensuring a 14-2 season, but that would be intellectually dishonest. Besides, I have sworn to use my powers of inaccurate prognostication for good, not evil. That said, I am picking the Redskins to shock the Packers this week. Green Bay has no running game without Ryan Clark, and they are not nearly as physical a team as Washington. I like Ryan Torain to rush for 85+ yards in this game, with a photo finish dependent on the teams' quarterbacks and secondaries. This will be a nail-biter. It also might be Washington's last win for a while.
- George: Packers. Screw you, George.
- Ryan: Packers.
- Rick: Packers.
New Orleans Saints (3-1) at Arizona Cardinals (2-2)
- Peter King: Saints. Max Hall, starting his NFL career, looks across the field in Glendale Sunday and sees the quarterback his coach thinks he has a prayer of becoming: Drew Brees. But on this day, there's only one cool Brees.
- Andrew: Saints. I just can't see Max Hall beating the defending champs, even if the Saints are underplaying a bit this season.
- George: Saints.
- Ryan: Saints.
- Rick: Saints.
Tennessee Titans (2-2) at Dallas Cowboys (1-2)
- Peter King: Cowboys. For Chris Johnson to get untracked, offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger has to put the fear of Vince Young into defenses. Throw deep to Kenny Britt, Vince.
- Andrew: Titans. Boy, I'd like to see this game happen in week 12 or 13. A close, sloppy one.
- George: Cowboys.
- Ryan: Cowboys.
- Rick: Titans.
San Diego Chargers (2-2) at Oakland Raiders (1-3)
- Peter King: Chargers. Remember when Jason Campbell was supposed to be the next Jim Plunkett?
- Andrew: Chargers. Yeah, Peter, I do. And as long as the Raiders give up on development projects in week 2, they will continue to be the Raiders.
- George: Raiders. George just likes the name Gradkowski. It sounds like he should play for the Raiders in the '60s.
- Ryan: Chargers.
- Rick: Raiders.
Philadelphia Eagles (2-2) at San Francisco 49ers (0-4)
- Peter King: 49ers. I am a sucker for those Niners, aren't I? I am falling on the Alex Smith sword this week. I see the good things he does and think, He's going to put it together one of these weeks and shock the world. ... Well, I say he has enough good weapons to shock Kevin Kolb and the Eagles Sunday night.
- Andrew: I'm a sucker, too. The 49ers are too good to be 0-5, even if I think Mike Singletery is a bit cray-cray. And I just don't believe in Kevin Kolb.
- George: 49ers.
- Ryan: Eagles. Well, somebody's got to pick them.
- Rick: Eagles.
Minnesota Vikings (1-2) at New York Jets (3-1)
- Peter King: Jets. I made this pick for the magazine on Monday morning, before the Randy Moss trade. I'm sticking with it, in part because I think Brett Favre would rather be anywhere but the Meadowlands Monday night, and the Jets are going to pressure him heavily.
- Andrew: Jets. How awesome is it that this game is on Monday night? Randy Moss will make an impact early, even if he doesn't catch a pass. But it won't be enough to bring a disjointed Vikings offense past an extremely tough and increasingly unified Jets team. I still think the Jets aren't half as good as they think they are, but they are better than the Vikings this week.
- George: Jets.
- Ryan: Vikings. Well, somebody's got to pick them.
- Rick: Jets.