Week Seven Early Game Predictions

Picking winners each week in the NFL this season has proven to be more difficult than learning Mandarin Chinese. For the second week in a row we were seven up and seven down, and although this week has some very tough match-ups, I see at least a ten win week on tap. For the season we are 51 up and 37 down.

San Diego Chargers vs Buffalo Bills – This is the one I'll be watching this Sunday. The Chargers are coming off a very big victory over the Patriots while the Bills spent the bye week licking their wounds after being thumped two weeks ago by the Cardinals. Both QB's have been nothing short of sensational on the season. I think both clubs will get their yards on the ground and certainly through the air, but I look for the Bills defense to rebound and be the difference against the soon to be travel weary Chargers.

Chargers 24 – Bills 27

Minnesota Vikings vs Chicago Bears – I like the Bears home advantage in this very important divisional match up, but until last week's narrow 12 to 10 victory over the Lions, I saw the much improved Vikings offense led by former Bear Bernard Berrian and the great Adrian Peterson as being the difference in this one. Look for the Vikings to focus on an injured Bears secondary and put the ball in the hands of Peterson as often as possible.

Vikings 19 – Bears 17

New Orleans Saints vs Carolina Panthers – The Saints have yet to win on the road this season, but if this club is to make a move in the most competitive division in football, it needs to start this week in Charlotte and continue next week in the ultimate road trip in the UK. Last week a very aggressive Buccaneers defense put tremendous pressure on QB Jake Delhomme and I look for this to be the Saints' blueprint for victory this week in Charlotte.

Saints 31 – Panthers 27

Pittsburgh Steelers vs Cincinnati Bengals – The Bengals who will play the next few of weeks without Carson Palmer (elbow), have shown a complete inability to run the football. Former Michigan RB Chris Perry, somehow selected ahead of the Rams Steven Jackson, was totally ineffective in last week's loss to the Jets and will find the goings even tougher versus a Steelers squad that welcomes back Willie Parker and Casey Hampton. This long time rivalry of family owned and operated clubs today features two teams going in totally opposite directions. Even on the road, this one should be easy for the boys from the Burgh.

Steelers 27 – Bengals 10

Tennessee Titans vs Kansas City Chiefs – This one on paper certainly looks like a mismatch and I will be doubly surprised if it isn't.. The Chiefs defensively has played poorly, giving up literally twice as many points as they have scored in 2008. Offensively the Chiefs welcome back QB Brodie Croyle and features RB Larry Johnson and Tony Gonzalez, two offensive threats, who were hoping to be ex-Chiefs earlier in the week. The home team advantage is a very important aspect in the NFL, but if they were playing in owner Clark Hunt's living room, it wouldn't make much difference in this one. I would be really surprised if we didn't see the Titans winning this one in a cakewalk.

Titans 31 – Chiefs 9

Baltimore Ravens vs Miami Dolphins – Both the Ravens and Dolphins are looking to take their season record to the five hundred mark in what should be a highly contested AFC battle. I'm not so certain the Dolphins Wildcat formation will be as successful vs the Ravens as it has been in recent weeks, but then again, I haven't been impressed with the Ravens offensive showing over the past three weeks (all loses). They have not run the ball effectively and rookie QB Joe Flacco has really struggled over the same period. It should be a low scoring affair, but I like the Dolphins prevailing in the end.

Ravens 13 – Dolphins 20

Dallas Cowboys vs St. Louis Rams – The Cowboys not only suffered an overtime loss to the Cardinals, but also suffered some serious injuries to key personnel on both sides of the football. Tony Romo who injured his pinkie finger last week, hopes to play, but is more likely to sit out the next to weeks and hopefully return for their match up vs the Giants in the Meadowlands on Nov 2nd. Look for veteran Brad Johnson to get the start at QB and exploit a decimated Rams secondary. It's tough enough covering the like of Jason Witten, Terrell Owens and Marion Barber, but when you add super wideout Roy Williams to the mix, the task becomes absolutely daunting. The Cowboys also have problems at the corner (Newman's sports hernia and Jones' suspension for being what he is; a thug), but the Rams no longer have the offensive personnel to exploit opponents deficiencies.

Cowboys 34 – Rams 10

San Francisco 49ers vs NY Giants – The Giants ran into an angry Cleveland Browns football club this past Monday night and are sure glad to be back at home against a struggling 49ers squad who have surrounded 101 points in their three consecutive loses versus the Saints, Patriots and Eagles. Look for the Giants to attempt to exploit a Niners secondary which has given up some very big plays in recent weeks. We'll find out just how good this Giants squad is beginning next week, but look for them to move to five and one by late afternoon this Sunday.

49ers 13 – Giants 33

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