NFL / nfl
Week 6 Must Start Players
Andy Dalton-QB (Cincinnati Bengals) Andy Dalton has been playing well this season. The emergence of Joe Mixon in the running game, Tyler Boyd becoming another receiver target, and experience in the Bill Lazor offense have proven to be good for him. I think if the offensive line can keep the Pittsburgh pass rush blocked then Andy Dalton will have 303 yards and 2 touchdowns. Jordan Howard-RB (Chicago Bears) Jordan Howard hasn’t been the bell cow we are used to him being this year and in fact the Bears limited him in the game plan before the bye week. I think coach Nagy will force the issue in getting him the ball this week in Miami. Look for Howard to have 98 yards and a touchdown. Julian Edelman-WR (New England) Julian Edelman’s second game back from suspension and a torn acl will be a good one for him. The best way to beat the Kansas City Chiefs is to keep the offense off the field. The Patriots will come in with a run heavy and short pass type of game plan. This fits right into what Edelman does well. Start him and he will give you 11 receptions for 101 yards. C.J. Uzomah-TE (Cincinatti Bengals) The Pittsburgh Steelers are a Tight End fun house. Every Tight End eats against the Steelers. No difference here. C.J. Uzomah will continue to be open for Andy Dalton. 4 receptions for 76 yards and a red zone touchdown. Minnesota Vikings D/ST The last time the Vikings played at home they were embarrassed by rookie quarterback Josh Allen. This won’t happen this time with Josh Rosen. The Vikings have had a couple weeks to remember that home embarrassment. This game will be a rout. Look for the defense to have 3 takeaways. Sebastian Janikowski-K (Seattle Seahawks) I think this game has revenge all over it. Marshawn will smell blood on the offensive end and Janikowski will hit every kick he is asked to kick against the Oakland Raiders who let him go this past offseason.
NFL playoff race: Chiefs, Rams virtual locks in early projections, Packers on the outside looking in
It's never too early to start thinking about the playoffs. Through five weeks, the playoff picture doesn't look anything like we expected it to look like before the season. The Kansas City Chiefs are a virtual lock to make the playoffs. The Chicago Bears are the frontrunners in the NFC North. The Green Bay Packers are on the wrong side of the bubble. The Baltimore Ravens have better playoff chances than the Jacksonville Jaguars. It's all a reminder that the NFL remains the most unpredictable, chaotic league in sports, which is what makes it so much dang fun. Welcome to our early NFL playoff projections, brought to you by SportsLine's Stephen Oh, who has provided us with every team's playoff percentages and expected win total via SportsLine's simulations. We'll be breaking down the playoff picture below, but first, let's go to the bullet points for some important takeaways. The Chiefs and Rams are the only two teams with a 99 percent chance of making the playoffs. The Ravens, despite dropping to 3-2 with a loss to the Browns, have an 80 percent chance of making the playoffs. The Bengals are ranked below the Chargers in terms of playoff chances. The Steelers' chances, even after they beat the Falcons, are at 34.8 percent. However, Oh pointed out that if they beat the Bengals this week, their percentage will rise above 50. The Browns have hope! They have a 12.5 percent chance of making the playoffs! The Bears, after the Rams and Saints, own the third-best chance of making the playoffs in the NFC at 74.2 percent and their chances of winning the NFC North are at 55.3 percent. The Eagles, despite losing to the Vikings on Sunday, still have a 50.6 percent chance of making the playoffs thanks to their inferior competition in the NFC East. The Packers' and Vikings' playoff projections are both around 30 percent. Oh's simulations actually give the Lions a higher expected win total (only slightly) than the Packers and Vikings. Below you'll find our playoff projections using projected wins. The first four seeds represent division winners while the final two spots are reserved for wild card teams. All projections are from SportsLine's simulations. AFC playoff projection Projected wins in parenthesis 1. Chiefs (12.3), AFC West champion At 5-0, the Chiefs are already running away with the AFC West. It's still early, but this week's game against the Patriots might just decide home-field advantage in the playoffs. What NFL picks can you make with confidence in Week 6? And what Super Bowl contender goes down hard? Visit SportsLine to see which NFL teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from the model that has beaten 98 percent of experts over the past two years. 2. Patriots (10.8), AFC East champion After a slow start, the Patriots are still projected to win the awful AFC East and wind up with double-digit wins. A win over the Chiefs would cement their status as the conference's top team, despite the sudden rise of Patrick Mahomes. 3. Ravens (10.4), AFC North champion The Ravens just lost to the Browns in overtime, but they're 3-2 with a plus-55 point differential. They have plenty of competition with the 4-1 Bengals, who already beat the Ravens earlier this season, looking strong. 4. Jaguars (9.3), AFC South champion They can't let Blake Bortles throw the ball 60-plus times again, but the Jaguars shouldn't panic after getting blown out against the Chiefs. They need Leonard Fournette to get healthy. The good news is that the Titans got upset by the Bills, so the Jaguars still look like the best team in the division.