NFL Predictions Week 3: Favorites on Major Upset Alert

George AndersonAnalyst IISeptember 21, 2012

NFL Predictions Week 3: Favorites on Major Upset Alert

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    The first two weeks of the 2012-2013 NFL season have been littered with upsets, and Week 3's NFL predictions show the trend will continue.

    This season has been baffling with all of the upsets that have occurred so far.

    Week 1 provided two surprises with one being the Arizona Cardinals finding a way to defeat the Seattle Seahawks. As surprising as it was to see the Cardinals win with such poor quarterback play, the Washington Redskins domination of the New Orleans Saints was the big shocker.

    Week 2 continued the trend with such upsets as Seattle's decisive victory over Dallas, and the shocker of the season as Arizona stunned New England.

    The Cardinals' victory over the Patriots may be the biggest upset of the entire season, but it will not be the last. Week 3 has four games that people need to watch as the upsets continue. 

    All spreads are courtesy of FootballLocks.com.

New York Jets (-2.5) at Miami Dolphins

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    The favored New York Jets will travel to Miami to play the Dolphins in Week 3. 

    The Jets had an amazing Week 1 as the team scored 48 points against Buffalo. WR Stephen Hill had a monster game with 89 yards and two touchdowns. He provided the scoring through the air, while RB Shonne Greene put up points on the ground. Greene had 94 yards on the ground with one touchdown.

    Week 2 was a different story. The Jets could only muster 10 points in a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    New York's offense looked like the troubled unit that did not score a touchdown in the preseason until the final game.

    WR Stephen Hill played like a rookie and finished the game without a catch. Greene also fell off as he finished with 11 carries and 23 yards rushing.

    Miami will have a great opportunity as the Dolphins are coming off their first win of the season.

    After a poor showing against the Houston Texans, Miami played with authority against the Oakland Raiders. The offense had great balance as it gained 11 first downs through the air and 12 first downs on the ground.

    The run game was the difference as the Dolphins rushed for 263 yards. Reggie Bush exploded for 172 of those yards and two touchdowns.

    The uncertainty of the Jets offense and the energy of the Dolphins offense are why Miami will earn its second win of the season. 

Philadelphia Eagles (-3.5) at Arizona Cardinals

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    On paper, Philadelphia looks like they should be 10-point favorites against Arizona. Looking at how the two undefeated teams played coming into Week 3, it is easy to see how the Eagles are barely favored.

    Philadelphia goes into Arizona as the sloppiest 2-0 team imaginable. The team won both of its games by one point, and the Eagles have nine turnovers in those two games.

    But as Will Rogers once said, "It's better to be lucky than good," and this has worked for the Eagles. 

    Philly's luck will run out this week as Arizona has thrived off its defense. 

    The Cardinals feature an atrocious offense, and many probably wonder how Arizona keeps winning. But the Cardinals also have luck as its defense is one of the best in the league thus far.

    The defense has seven sacks through the first two weeks, and it has excelled in creating pressure. Arizona held the Patriots to 5-of-13 on third down and even forced an interception from Tom Brady.

    Philadelphia is a turnover machine, and Arizona will be eager to be the first team to make the Eagles pay.

Atlanta Falcons at San Diego Chargers (-3)

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    The Chargers being favored over the Falcons is questionable to begin with. Atlanta is a favorite to win the NFC South, while San Diego is supposed to be facing tough competition from Kansas City and Denver.

    The Chargers are coming off a convincing 38-10 win over the Titans. 

    The offense found its running game as San Diego collected 148 yards on the ground. The offense continued its success through the air, and WR Malcom Floyd had another solid game with 109 yards.

    The Bolts defense was especially impressive. San Diego held Tennessee to nine first downs, and RB Chris Johnson was limited to 17 yards on eight carries.

    Previous success does not matter, though, as the Chargers have not faced an opponent like Atlanta.

    San Diego may have had an advantage before Week 1 as Atlanta is known for being most successful at home. Then the Falcons went into Arrowhead stadium and trounced Kansas City 41-20.

    Atlanta's offense is a thing of beauty right now. The running game is practically nonexistent, but the passing game has made the rushing attack almost irrelevant.

    QB Matt Ryan looks comfortable in the pocket, and the offensive line is the reason as it has only allowed two sacks all season. It also helps that Ryan has an arsenal that includes Julio Jones, Roddy White and Tony Gonzalez.

    The Falcons defense struggled in Week 1, but then it intercepted Peyton Manning three times in the first quarter. Those turnovers put Atlanta ahead for good to get the Week 2 victory.

    This will likely be one of the best games of the day, but Atlanta will be the only team remaining undefeated. 

Green Bay Packers (-3) at Seattle Seahawks

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    Of course, why not have the biggest upset of the week come on Monday Night Football.

    The Green Bay Packers came into the season as Super Bowl favorites. After getting manhandled 30-22 by the San Francisco 49ers, the Packers regrouped with a win against the Chicago Bears.

    The defense struggled against the 49ers as it allowed 186 yards to the San Francisco ground game. RB Frank Gore just had his way and had an easy time gaining his 112 yards.

    The defense came back in Week 2 and humiliated the Chicago offense. The defense forced four interceptions and sacked QB Jay Cutler seven times, half of which came via Clay Matthews.

    The reason for a nationally televised upset will be the Green Bay offense. Thought to be the strength of the team, Aaron Rodgers has been rather unimpressive, just ask Rodgers' fantasy owners.

    It took a touchdown by the punter just to get the offense jump started last week.

    This spells trouble in a big way as the Packers travel to Seattle. 

    While the Seahawks offense has been hit-or-miss, the defense and special teams have been putting the team in winning situations. The defense held Arizona to 30 percent conversion on third down in Week 1, and in Week 2 the defense owned the Dallas offense.

    Seattle held the Cowboys to 49 yards on the ground, and DeMarco Murray managed a measly 44 yards. The Seahawks defense has not allowed 100 yards total between the last two weeks, and against a pass-first offense in the Packers, the trend may continue.

    Without any kind of run game, Green Bay will have to try and pass on the tallest secondary in the league. The secondary also includes ball-hawks CB Brandon Browner and CB Richard Sherman.

    Seattle is primed to upset Green Bay, and Week 3 will once again leave numerous favored teams dropping their heads in disappointment.