NFL Week 14 - Sunday Preview Part 1

NFL Week 14 - Sunday Preview Part 1

Pittsburgh Steelers (7-5) @ Buffalo Bills (6-6) - Ralph Wilson Stadium

The Bills and Steelers clash in a game with playoff implications for both sides at Ralph Wilson Stadium on Sunday. Buffalo are staring down the barrel of a 17th straight season without making the play-offs after blowing a 15-point lead in their 38-24 loss to Oakland last week.  The Steelers managed a comfortable 21-7 victory over the New York Giants at home last week to remain level at 7-5 with the Ravens atop the AFC North. Both sides can ill afford too many more slip ups as the race for Wild Card spots in the AFC heats up over the final month of the season. 

Verdict - Steelers 27 Bills 24

The Steelers have been pretty poor on the road this year, however I think they are starting to build their momentum. I think the Bills are heading in the other direction and it's hard to mount a case for them at this time of year. 

Cincinnati Bengals (4-7-1) @ Cleveland Browns (0-12) - Browns Stadium

Hue Jackson and and his beleaguered Browns go in search of their first win of the season when they welcome cross town rivals the Bengals on Sunday. The Browns are fresh off a bye with a goal of avoiding becoming the first team since the 2008 Detroit Lions to go 0-16. The Bengals were touted as a potential Super Bowl team heading into this year, however have flopped to a 4-7-1 record with little chance of making the playoffs. This despite the Bengals putting in their best display of the season last week to beat the Eagles at home 32-14. 

Verdict - Bengals 30 Browns 16

The Browns are really bad, I mean really bad. Even with this being a rivalry game at home, I can't see them winning. They have had their chances this year, the Browns, but their hearts appear to be broken right now. 

Chicago Bears (3-9) @ Detroit Lions (8-4) - Ford Field

The Lions can go a long way to locking up a playoff spot with a victory over the struggling Bears at Ford Field on Sunday. The Lions were highly impressive in their 28-13 road win over the Saints, keeping Drew Brees and his high flying offense grounded in New Orleans. The victory ensured the Lions stayed on course for their first division title since 1993, holding a two game lead over both the Vikings and Packers with four regular season games to play. The Bears are playing for pride and were right at home in the snow against the 49ers at home last week, scoring their most comprehensive win of the season, running out 26-6 winners. 

Verdict - Lions 34 Bears 10

This should be a blow out win for the Lions. The Bears beat the Lions earlier this year, however with so much to play for with Detroit, I see this being one-way traffic. 

Denver Broncos (8-4) @ Tennessee Titans (6-6) - Nissan Stadium

The Titans play one of their most important home games in five years when they host the Broncos on Sunday at Nissan Stadium. The Titans are in a three-way tie for first place, atop the AFC South at 6-6, with the Texans and Colts heading into Week 14. The Titans have been 18-46 over the last four years and have returned to relevance this year with improved play from quarterback Marcus Mariota and a solid running game based around DeMarco Murray. The Broncos are 8-4, however that record is good enough for third place in the AFC West. However, a 20-10 win over the Jaguars ensured they still control their own playoff destiny with a Wild Card spot safely in their keeping should they keep winning.

Verdict - Titans 27 Broncos 17

Going for a statement win for the Titans here. The Broncos have issues with injury at quarterback, and were downright ugly in their win over the Jaguars. The Titans look to have too many points in them for Denver here. 

Houston Texans (6-6) @ Indianapolis Colts (6-6) - Lucas Oil Stadium

It's a battle for control of the the AFC South as the surging Colts host the stuttering Texans on Sunday. The Colts have pulled off a series of big wins against the Titans at home, at Green Bay followed by a thumping win over the Jets  in New York on Monday Night Football. With Andre Luck starting to play at a consistently elite level, you feel this team has the momentum to run away with this Division over the final four weeks The Texans appear headed in the opposite direction after three consecutive losses to the Raiders, Chargers and Packers. The Texans' offense has been a big problem in those losses, averaging just 15 points per game. 

Verdict - Colts 32 Texans 18

Teams headed in completely opposite direction here. Colts and Andrew Luck are hot right now and have the momentum to steamroll the Texans and claim control of the Division here. The Texans' offense is in a real funk right now and I can't see them matching it with the Colts. 

Arizona Cardinals (5-6-1) Miami Dolphins (7-5) - New Miami Stadium

The Dolphins will be looking to bounce back from a thumping at the hands of the Ravens when they host the Cardinals on Sunday. The Dolphins six match winning streak was unceremoniously quashed as they were crushed 35-7 in Baltimore. The Dolphins remain right in the thick of the AFC Wild Card race, however can ill afford too many more slip ups. The Cardinals kept their faint playoff hopes alive with a 32-14 victory over the Redskins at home last week.

Verdict - Cardinals 25 Dolphins 22

Going for somewhat of an upset here. I just don't think the Dolphins are very good and they got exposed last week in Baltimore. Cardinals have underperformed this year, however are a tough side and I think they can get one over Miami here. 

Washington Redkskins (6-5-1) @ Philadelphia Eagles (5-7) - Lincoln Financial Field

The Redskins face a crucial road game against Divisional rival the Eagles as they look to keep their playoff hopes alive. A loss in Arizona last week put the Redskins on the outside of the playoff picture looking in, with four weeks to go. Go back twelve months and the Redksins won their final four games to claim the NFC East Division title. During that memorable 4-game stretch last season, Kirk Cousins passed for 12 touchdowns and only 1 interception. The Eagles played arguably their worst game of the season last week in losing 32-14 at the Bengals. After starting their season with three wins, the Eagles have now lost 7 of their last 9 games and look a very forlorn hope to make the playoffs.

Verdict - Eagles 25 Redskins 24

Going for another upset here with the Eagles getting a home win. The Eagles I am hoping will be embarrassed enough after a shocking performance last week last week  and will bounce back against a division rival.