By The Coach and Dr. Football
The Vikings are coming off another tremendous defensive effort wile the Lions finally won. This week’s black-and-blue division game should be interesting only because it’s in Detroit. It should also be interesting because the Minnesota Vikings haven’t won a road game since 2012. And the last time they did was in Detroit.
The 3-2 Vikings won their sixth consecutive game at home last week, a low-scoring 16-10 defensive struggle with the Chiefs. In the end, the Vikings numbers looked better than their point production.
Heading into the week, runningback Adrian Peterson is second in the NFL with 86.4 rushing yards per game and has added three rushing touchdowns. As a team, the Vikings rank sixth in rushing yards per game with 126.0.
Wideout Stefon Diggs has emerged as a legitimate threat over the past two games, recording six catches for 87 yards at Denver and seven catches for 129 yards vs. Kansas City. Diggs made his first career start in Week 6 against Kansas City and was the first Viking to surpass the 100-yard receiving mark this season. Not sure what that says about QB Teddy Bridgewater.
The Vikings defense has allowed 20 or fewer points in four games this season and has allowed the second-fewest points per game (16.6). The defense also ranks third in the NFL allowing TDs on only 40 per cent of opponents’ trips into the red zone. In his second career start in Week 6, rookie linebacker Eric Kendricks led the Vikings in tackles and tied a Vikings rookie record with a career-high 13. He also picked up his second career sack along with a tackle-for-loss and two passes defensed (whatever that stat means).
Statistically, our boys were not Eric Kendricks last week. In fact, our fearless prognosticators were rather mediocre. The Doc went 8-6 (51-40) and 4-10 (39-52) against the spread. The Coach went 9-5 straight up (54-37) and 6-8 against the spread (46-45).
This week, the Doc writes brilliantly about our exquisite choices while The Coach will spend his time eating Cheesy Puffs and screaming at all the stinkin’ flags.
Let’s take a close look at Week 6:
Seattle Seahawks (2-4) at San Francisco 49ers (2-4)
Line: Seahawks by 6
Both teams have disappointed their fans thus far, but one team still could go 12-4 this season. HINT – it’s not the 49ers. The Coach says: Whatever. Right now, neither team is as bad as the Jaguars or as good as the Bills. They should be in London this week.
Dr. Football: Take the Seahawks to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Seahawks to win and cover.
Sunday Morning from London
Buffalo Bills (3-3) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-5)
Line: Bills by 5
What did the good people of London do to deserve a game featuring Jacksonville? The Coach says: Fly them over, but don’t fly them back.
Dr. Football: Take the Bills to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Bills to win and cover.
Early Sunday Afternoon
Cleveland Browns (2-4) at St. Louis Rams (2-3)
Line: Rams by 5.5
Both teams are terrible but one has a cancer that won’t let them break out of their funk. One guess who that might be. The Coach says: Well, I’ll guess it isn’t Johnny Manziel. Instead, it’s head coach Mike Pettine who is less excited about winning as he is afraid of losing and that’s how his choke-team plays. Of course, he’s also decided to go with a career loser named Josh McCown as his quarterback. WTF?
Dr. Football: Take the Rams to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Rams to win and cover.
Pittsburgh Steelers (4-2) at Kansas City Chiefs (1-5)
Line: Steelers by 2.5
Andy Reid has been exposed as a fraud, unable to lead the now Jamaal Charles-less Chiefs to any kind of success after winning their season opener. The Steelers haven’t missed a beat without Big Ben. The Coach says: Michael Vick is still a pretty good quarterback and Andy Reid is a coach with a three-year contract and a two-year act.
Dr. Football: Take the Steelers to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Steelers to win and cover.
Houston Texans (2-4) at Miami Dolphins (2-3)
Line: Dolphins by 4.5
Just like when a team gets a brand new starting QB, a new coach can provide an initial spark. The second game will bring things back to reality. The Coach says: I wouldn’t bet that Texans team with Monopoly money.
Dr. Football: Take the Texans in an upset.
The Coach: Take the Dolphins to win and cover.
New York Jets (4-1) at New England Patriots (5-0)
Line: Patriots by 9
Despite a bit of a sputter in Indianapolis on Sunday night, many are saying that this Patriots team may be better than the one that went 16-0 a few years ago. They might not let the Jets score. The Coach says: Brady is still pissed that he didn’t put up 50 against the Colts.
Dr. Football: Take the Patriots to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Patriots to win and cover.
Minnesota Vikings (3-2) at Detroit Lions (1-5)
Line: Vikings by 2.5
Vikings are winless on the road while the Lions have a big 1 game winning streak going. The Vikings struggled at times on Sunday against the Chiefs, but should be better after regrouping. The Coach says: The Lions are now destined for 1-15.
Dr. Football: Take the Vikings to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Vikings to win and cover.
Atlanta Falcons (5-1) at Tennessee Titans (1-4)
Line: Falcons by 4
The Falcons got smacked pretty hard Last Thursday and won’t let that happen again despite playing their second consecutive road game. This one will be close. The Coach says: The Falcons are better than the Titans. Doesn’t mean they’ll win on the road, however.
Dr. Football: Take the Falcons to win but not cover.
The Coach: Take the Falcons to win and cover.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-3) at Washington (2-4)
Line: Redskins by 3.5
Washington has been inconsistent this year but do play better at home. Many think the Bucs won’t win again this year, and I tend to agree. The Coach says: Poor Bucs.
Dr. Football: Take Washington to win and cover.
The Coach: Take Washington to win and cover.
New Orleans Saints (2-4) at Indianapolis Colts (3-3)
Line: Colts by 4.5
Despite the Saints emotional home win last week against the Falcons, I can’t imagine Andrew Luck losing two games in a row at home. The Coach says: Yep, take the home team.
Dr. Football: Take the Colts to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Colts to win and cover.
Late Sunday Afternoon
Oakland Raiders (2-3) at San Diego Chargers (2-4)
Line: Chargers by 4
Both teams take it to the next level when playing each other which always provides good entertainment on the field and in the stands. Chargers fans hate the Raiders fans and vice versa. I think we start to see a Charger slide. The Coach says: Phillip Rivers completed 43 passes on 65 attempts for 503 yards and two touchdowns and lost 27-20. How do you bets against a guy who throws 65 passes? Youb have to just love this guy.
Dr. Football: Take the Raiders in an upset.
The Coach: Take the Chargers to win and cover.
Dallas Cowboys (2-3) at New York Giants (3-3)
Line: Giants by 3.
The Giants should have beaten the Cowboys in Week 1 and despite looking terrible on Monday night, they’ll get their revenge. The Coach says; The Cowboys have too many injuries and the Giants aren’t as good as advertised, but the Giants are at home.
Dr. Football: Take the Giants to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Giants to win and cover.
Philadelphia Eagles (3-3) at Carolina Panthers (5-0)
Line: Panthers by 3
Unlike Eli Manning on Monday night, Cam Newton should be able to avoid the Eagles pass rush. The Coach says: Cam Newton is an elite quarterback and a winner.
Dr. Football: Take the Panthers to win and cover.
The Coach: Take the Panthers to win and cover.
Baltimore Ravens (1-5) at Arizona Cardinals (4-1)
Line: Cardinals by 7.5
The Cardinals looked sloppy against Pittsburgh and they won’t let that happen again especially at home but they’ll still be facing a Ravens team that you can’t write off just yet. The Coach says: Since the day Joe Flacco decided to play a game instead of being at the hospital with his wife to help with the birth of their child, he hasn’t won very often. Karma?
Dr. Football: Take the Cardinals to win but not cover.
The Coach: Take the Cardinals to win and cover.