Poupart's picks: Week 8

It seems as though upsets have become less and less frequent in the NFL this season as the weeks have passed, and that makes picking games a little easier. The marquee matchup this week clearly is Philadelphia at Denver in one of the late games on Sunday afternoon. Here are the predictions for Week 8.

Sunday, October 30

Minnesota (2-4) at Carolina (4-2): That was a nice comeback victory for the Vikings last week against Green Bay, but this is still a flawed team. Carolina, 24-16.

Green Bay (1-5) at Cincinnati (5-2): The Bengals were exposed a bit last week against Pittsburgh, particularly with their run defense, but the Packers have way too many injuries on offense to win at Cincy. Cincinnati, 33-20.

Arizona (2-4) at Dallas (4-3): The Cardinals won because of their defense last week against Tennessee, but they'll need more than that against a Dallas team coming off a heartbreaking loss at Seattle. Dallas, 24-13.

Chicago (3-3) at Detroit (3-3): Yes, this is a battle for sole possession of first place in the horrible NFC North. It's a tough game to call because both teams have struggled on offense. We just like the Bears' defense a little bit more. Chicago, 16-13.

Cleveland (2-4) at Houston (0-6): The Texans have to win sometime, right? This might be their best chance all season. Houston, 16-15.

Miami (2-4) at New Orleans (2-5): This game actually will be played in Baton Rouge, but the Dolphins will need to play much better for Nick Saban's homecoming to be a happy one. Unfortunately, the Saints have played much better than the Dolphins lately. New Orleans, 27-17.

Washington (4-2) at New York Giants (4-2): This is the second-best matchup of the weekend. The Redskins have the edge on defense, the Giants on offense. Home field makes the difference. N.Y. Giants, 21-20.

Jacksonville (4-2) at St. Louis (3-4): The Rams can score, but they'll be going up against a good Jaguars defense. Jacksonville, on the other hand, has struggled on offense all year. Tough call. St. Louis, 24-23.

Oakland (2-4) at Tennessee (2-5): The Raiders finally got off the schneid last week against Buffalo and they might be ready to get a little streak going. The Titans simply are not very good. Oakland, 30-20.

Kansas City (4-2) at San Diego (3-4): The Chargers have perfected the art of losing close games this season and at some point that's going to have a long-term effect. The Chiefs, meanwhile, have been up-and-down. Should be a lot of scoring in this one. San Diego, 35-31.

Philadelphia (4-2) at Denver (5-2): The Eagles got lucky last week against San Diego, while Denver lost in the final seconds. Philly's lack of a running game is a problem. Denver, 23-19.

Tampa Bay (5-1) at San Francisco (1-5): Former University of Miami star Ken Dorsey gets the call at quarterback for the 49ers, while Carnell Williams remains a question mark for the Bucs. None of it matters, though. The 49ers are that bad. Tampa Bay, 24-10.

Buffalo (3-4) at New England (3-3): The Patriots are coming off their bye week and could have Tedy Bruschi back in the lineup. The Bills, meanwhile, got hammered at Oakland last weekend and will need a big effort from Kelly Holcomb. Don't count on it, though. New England, 28-13.

Monday, October 31

Baltimore (2-4) at Pittsburgh (4-2): The Ravens have no offense and now they have injury concerns on defense as well. The Steelers, meanwhile, have been awesome in prime time under Bill Cowher. Pittsburgh, 27-6.

Last week's record: 12-2

Season record: 66-36

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