NFL Week 11 Preview
Cardinals @ Seahawks
This was written prior to the start of this game
This could be the best Thursday Night Football matchup this entire year. Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals are coming off a miraculous win against the Bills that viewers are calling the "Hail Murray". The Seahawks are coming off of a rare back-to-back loss and Russell Wilson has really struggled the past two games. While Wilson has hurt his MVP candidacy, I still think the Seahawks are the teams to beat in the NFC West. Wilson isn't the type of quarterback to get swept in a season and he also has never lost three straight games. The secondary for Seattle needs to get their stuff together. Cardinals wide receiver, Deandre Hopkins, should have a field day against the Seahawks' terrible secondary. Wilson should be able to bounce back and find a way to win on Thursday Night Football.
What to watch for: Deandre Hopkins vs the Seahawks secondary
Player of the Game: Russell Wilson QB Seahawks
Final Score: Cardinals 27 Seahawks 31
Steelers @ Jaguars
The Steelers are big favorites this week against the Jaguars, but it should be a closer game than people expect. According to "Sharp Football Analysis", the Steelers are 1-10 against the spread in their last eleven games as double digit road favorites. With that being said, this isn't an ordinary Steelers football team. The Steelers have both a suffocating defense and an extremely fun offense. That suffocating defense should be able to chew Jake Luton up and spit him out like gum. Steelers WR, Chase Claypool, has been one of the most exciting rookies in the NFL and Big Ben should be able to maximize his opportunities against one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL. The Steelers should be able to keep the train rolling and remain undefeated against one of the worst teams in the NFL.
What to watch for: Can the Steelers get the play action game going?
Player of the Game: Chase Claypool WR Steelers
Final Score: Steelers 26 Jaguars 16
Lions @ Panthers
The big storyline of this game is Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater's health. He is listed as a game time decision due to a knee injury and if he is unable to play, other players on the Panthers offense will need to step up. If Bridgewater is unable to go, expect to see a lot of XFL star quarterback, PJ Walker. Walker is a dual threat who is going to scare the defense with his legs. While Walker stood out in the XFL, he has never started an NFL game and could be thrown off by the speed of the game. Like the Chargers, it feels like every Lions game is close. The Lions almost got upset by the Washington Football Team last week and it seems like each week we get that much closer to the firing of Matt Patricia. I expect this to be another close game that depends on if Teddy Bridgewater is playing or not. I have edited this piece after Bridgewater was ruled inactive. Now that Bridgewater is inactive, I have flipped my pick to the Lions. Matthew Stafford is a really good quarterback and the Panthers won't be able to keep up with the Lions' offense.
What to watch for: Will PJ Walker be able to stay calm under pressure?
Player of the Game: Matthew Stafford QB Lions
Final Score: Lions 26 Panthers 24
Patriots @ Texans
These are two of the most disappointing teams in the NFL this year. However, the Patriots have strung together back-to-back prime time wins against the Jets and the Ravens. Outside of Deshaun Watson and Will Fuller, the Texans have been terrible this year. Bill Belichick should be able to dice up Romeo Crennel's squad. The Pats are starting to catch a rhythm and I'd rather bet on Cam Newton than against him. I'm hoping to see Deshaun Watson work his magic against the Patriots defense. I don't know if this is the week that the Texans offense gets going. This isn't going to be a "pretty" game and there should be a lot of turnovers. New England is going to lean on the run game and expose Houston's horrendous run defense. If Newton can stay turnover-free than the Patriots will win this game.
What to watch for: Will the Deshaun Watson to Will Fuller be enough to beat the Pats?
Player of the Game: Damien Harris RB Patriots
Final Score: Patriots 22 Texans 16
Titans @ Ravens
This is the game of the week! While both the Ravens and Titans have struggled recently, they are both going to be playoff teams this year. Both teams actually have similar problems, they run the ball too often! This is somewhat of a hot take, but this is my explanation. They try to establish the run in the very beginning of the game, but this can lead to teams getting up on them early. This causes both the Ravens and the Titans to have to play from behind which means throwing the football. If these teams have success throwing the ball early, it will open up the run game later on in the game. Which ever offensive coordinator adapts better will win the game. The Titans defense has been "iffy" lately. The Ravens will have opportunities and I expect Lamar Jackson to capitalize. This will be a close game, but I expect Jackson to get revenge on the team that knocked him off in the playoffs.
What to watch for: What offensive coordinator adapts
Player of the Game: Lamar Jackson QB Ravens
Final Score: Titans 24 Ravens 26
Eagles @ Browns
This matchup features two of the most inconsistent quarterbacks in the NFL, but both are super fun to watch. The big storyline for this game is about who isn't playing. Myles Garrett was placed on the COVID-19 list and is out this week. The Browns will need someone to step up on the defensive line and get in the face of Carson Wentz. Offensively for the Eagles, I expect to see an increased workload for Miles Sanders. Sanders is one of the most talented players in the NFL and makes things happen when the ball is in his hands. Nick Chubb is one of the best running backs in the NFL, but the Eagles have one of the best run defenses in the NFL. In order for the Browns to win this game, Baker Mayfield will need to make plays in the passing game. I see Cleveland winning this game in a close one.
What to watch for: What target steps up for Baker Mayfield
Player of the Game: Jarvis Landry WR Browns
Final Score: Eagles 24 Browns 27
Falcons @ Saints
My eyes will be peeled on the Saints offense for this game. Taysom Hill is the definition of a real life "FLEX" player, but I'm not sold on him as a quarterback. He's super fun to watch running across the formation as a tight end or receiver, but I would rather have Jameis Winston behind center. Alvin Kamara is going to have a huge role in this offense and is going to be the spark for New Orleans' offense. Atlanta will have to get the ball into Calvin Ridley and Julio Jones' hands. Todd Gurley isn't going to be able to run the ball on the Saints stiff defense. This is a really hard game to pick, but I'm going to trust what I know and that is Matt Ryan. I think this game will be sloppy and Taysom Hill will struggle. I am going with what I know and the the Falcons offense will put up points.
What to watch for: How the Saints use Taysom Hill
Player of the Game: Calvin Ridley WR Falcons
Final Score: Falcons 25 Saints 23
Bengals @ WFT
You have to love seeing the first pick (Joey Burrow) going head to head against the second pick (Chase Young). Each rookie has been really good and it's an interesting storyline. The Football Team put up a really good effort against the Lions last week and Alex Smith almost led an incredible comeback. I have faith in Joe Burrow this week. He should be able to put on a show and get the ball to Tee Higgins and Giovanni Bernard. I expect this to be both a sloppy and entertaining game to watch.
What to watch for: Burrow vs Young
Player of the Game: Tee Higgins WR Bengals
Final Score: Bengals 27 WFT 17
Jets @ Chargers
This will be the game that Justin Herbert pads his stats for his rookie of the year campaign. Herbert has been phenomenal all year and in this game his amazing stats will finally add up to a win. The Jets are one of the worst teams I've ever seen and I blame Adam Gase for a lot of that. Gregg Williams is also a bad defensive coordinator and lets a lot of players get behind the defense. My random prediction of the week is that Jalen Guyton gets a 40+ yard touchdown. I expect Herbert to have one of his best games of the season despite having one of the worst haircuts in NFL History.
What to Watch For: Can the Jets offense put up any type of fight?
Player of the Game: Justin Herbert QB Chargers
Final Score: Jets 13 Chargers 37
Dolphins @ Broncos
The Dolphins are by far the hottest team in the NFL. Miami's offense, defense, and special teams are all clicking and they should be able to run through Denver this week. Denver Quarterback, Drew Lock, is going to be a game time decision but he hasn't been a full participant in practice all week. If Lock is unable to go, then Miami will be seeing Brett Rypien. Rypien struggled in the games he played and hasn't played in a few weeks. This may be the week that Jon Elway sees a rookie quarterback ball out, then decide he wants to take one in the first round next year. Lock has struggled all season and if he's playing, I expect his struggles to continue.
What to watch for: Will Tua's hot streak continue?
Player of the Game: Devante Parker WR Dolphins
Final Score: Dolphins 25 Broncos 13
Cowboys @ Vikings
This week, the Cowboys are coming off of a bye and have Andy Dalton at quarterback. Coming off of the COVID-19 list, Dalton says he still can't taste or smell, but he is going to be the starting quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys. That terrifies me. The Vikings are catching some fire and will give Dalton some struggles offensively. For the Vikings offense, I just want to see them get the ball in star wide receiver, Justin Jefferson's hands. As I predicted before he was drafted, Jefferson is the best rookie receiver. He's so talented and if the Cowboys run man coverage, you can expect the ball to be in his hands. Minnesota needs to throw the ball more on early downs rather than give the ball to Dalvin Cook. The offense has been too predictable lately which is exactly why they need to throw the ball on first down! I expect the Vikings to keep the train moving and beat the Cowboys.
What to watch for: Will Minnesota throw the ball on early downs?
Player of the Game: Kirk Cousins QB VIkings
Final Score: Cowboys 13 Vikings 27
Packers @ Colts
Aaron Rodgers has been a top three defense all season and Davante Adams has been unstoppable when he's healthy. Thankfully for Indianapolis, the Colts have the number one pass defense in the NFL and had a long week to prepare for this matchup. Where the Colts thrive is in the middle of the field and stopping tight ends. The Colts are going to need to double team Adams. Colts strong safety, Julian Blackmon, has been one of the best defensive rookies in the NFL and he is a guy who may catch Rodgers off guard. The Packers defense is not very good. There will be opportunities for Nyheim Hines to make plays against a weak Packers defense. This is my upset of the week, the Colts are going to give Aaron Rodgers difficulties and Hines is going to ball out on the offensive side.
What to watch for: Michael Pittman Jr. vs Jaire Alexander
Player of the Game: Julian Blackmon SS Colts
Final Score: Packers 23 Colts 26
Chiefs @ Raiders
This has to be the revenge game for the Chiefs. There is no way that Patrick Mahomes gets swept by the Raiders this year. Between the added motivation of the whole bus story and the entire Raiders defense being affected by COVID-19, I expect the Chiefs to play with fire. Not to mention, this week the Chiefs are coming off of a bye and there is no better coach coming off the bye week than Andy Reid. Mahomes is so cerebral and he has picked up tendencies that the Raiders have shown. Mahomes is also a killer on Sunday Night Football. The Raiders won't be able to have the same success this week and I expect the Chiefs to pull out all different types of trick plays and deep balls.
What to watch for: Will Tyreek Hill get loose?
Player of the Game: Tyreek Hill WR Chiefs
Final Score: Chiefs 33 Raiders 23
Rams @ Buccaneers
This is an awesome Monday Night Football matchup! The Rams looked really good against the Seahawks last week and Sean McVay is back in his bag when it comes to calling offensive plays. Aaron Donald hasn't been as active in the sack category since the Rams played the 49ers and I'm watching how the Rams move Donald around on the defensive line. The Buccaneers have been one the most fun teams to watch in the NFL. Last week Ronald Jones had his breakout game and this week I expect it to be Antonio Brown. Tony toe-tap has been getting better each week and he looks like he's ready to have a bigger role on this offense. The Bucs are one of the most fun teams in the NFL and I expect Tom Brady to ball out on Monday Night Football.
What to watch for: Will Aaron Donald get a sack?
Player of the Game: Antonio Brown WR Buccaneers
Final Score: Rams 26 Buccaneers 27