Ranking the Best NFL Games of Week 8
We've almost reached the halfway point of the season, and we know one thing for sure: We know nothing!
So far, several teams that we thought would be great (Green Bay and New England) have been mediocre. And a few teams that we thought were rebuilding (go Vikes?) have been pretty awesome.
And of course, there are the teams and players who drive their fans crazy every year. (Micheal Vick, meet Philip Rivers, talk amongst yourselves... we'll be over here.)
Here's a rundown of the games in Week 8 and which ones you shouldn't miss.
14. Raiders vs Chiefs
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Game: Oakland Raiders at the Kansas City Chiefs
Why You Should Watch: You probably shouldn't. Unless:
A. You are from Oakland.
B. You're from Kansas City.
C. You went to USC.
D. Or you hate USC and want to giggle at all the mediocre quarterbacks from there (Matt Cassel, Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart).
E. Watching another attempt to jumpstart a Brady Quinn Era.
Who Wins: You, the fan of course. And possibly Oakland.
13. Browns vs Chargers
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Game: San Diego Chargers at Cleveland Browns
Why You Should Watch: Even though Brandon Weeden is pushing 30, he is a pup in NFL years. So if Trent Richardson's ribs hold up, you are watching the best rookie QB/RB combo outside of Washington. If that's not reason enough, watch Rivers yell at his teammates, possibly a coach or two and most likely some Browns fans.
Who Wins: If the games so far this season tell us anything, it's that Cleveland will fall behind by a lot. Then, San Diego will take its foot off the gas, the Browns will make a furious comeback scoring the game-tying TD with no time left...and then miss the extra point.
12. Dolphins vs Jets
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Game: Miami Dolphins at New York Jets.
But if New York suffers one more loss, is this the week the Tebowing one throws more than one pass and finally takes over the Jets huddle?
Who Wins: I'm thinking Dolphins rookie QB Ryan Tannehill leads Miami to the road victory. And Sanchez gets more sleepless nights.
11. Jaguars vs Packers
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Game: Jacksonville Jaguars at Green Bay Packers
Why You Should Watch: If the Packers are going to move up in the BCS, this is the game to do it. If they can put 70 up against Jacksonville, who will be most likely playing without Maurice Jones-Drew, they will probably impress the voters enough to move up in the polls.
Who Wins: In the words of my buddy Matt King: "This is going to be such a huge blowout Aaron Rodgers probably won't even come out in the second half".
Which would suck if you have Discount Double Check as your fantasy QB. But who doesn't love to watch a good first-half blowout?
10. Buccaneers vs Vikings
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Game: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Minnesota Vikings
Why You Should Watch: Everyone said this would be the year that Adrian "All Day" Peterson slows down. Coming off a major injury, it only made sense that Peterson would not be himself this year.
Well, everyone was wrong. Peterson is well on his way to a 1,000-yard season and looks every bit as bruising and fast as he has in the past. Oh, and by the way, the Vikings are a very surprising 5-2.
Who Wins: Tampa Bay plays really hard, and both Josh Freeman and Mike Williams seem to be having bounce-back years. All that said, you've got to take the Vikings, all day.
9. Colts vs Titans
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Game: Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans
Why You Should Watch: Andrew Luck is turning in an impressive rookie season. If it wasn't for Robert Griffin III upstaging him for the second straight year, Luck would most likely be the Rookie of the Year. He's pretty much kept his team in every game and has earned his "franchise quarterback" tag.
Who Wins: Though the Titans have been the Cardiac Kids lately, team chemistry might go the way of the dodo bird if they decide to switch from Matt Hasselbeck back to Jake Locker.
According to Yahoo Sports, head coach Mike Munchak has let it be known: "If Jake's ready to play this week, Jake will start."
I'm going with Luck for the win. Has he grown the neck beard back yet?
8. Panthers vs Bears
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Game: Carolina Panthers at Chicago Bears
Why You Should Watch: Cam Newton has had a tough year and an even tougher week. People are debating the cause of his sophomore slump and wondering if the league has figured him out. Some say he doesn't make his team better, and Warren Moon has come to his defense by bringing up the "race card" after poor Cam was compared to Vince Young. Not fun times.
Who Wins: Chicago is coming off an impressive Monday night win against division rival Detroit, so this game should be no problem. Unless Cam and his not-so-merry crew can keep it close.
If they can, maybe last year's Superman can re-emerge.
7. Patriots vs Rams
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Game: New England Patriots at St. Louis Rams
Why You Should Watch: If you read most of what people are saying about New England, you would believe that Tom Brady is not the guy he used to be, Bill Belichick is no longer an elite coach and the Patriots are what their record says they are: average.
But this team has had a lot of close losses, made some critical mental errors and they are breaking in a handful of talented but young players on defensive. So if any team should be better in the second half of the season, it's Tom and Bill's team.
Who Wins: I've got Vince Wilfork leading his baby defensive linemen (in age, not in size) to many sacks and a close win, as usual.
6. 49ers vs Cardinals
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Game: San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals
Why You Should Watch: The Cardinals are playing on Monday night! That alone is reason to watch, right? On a personal note, Larry Fitzgerald is killing my fantasy team. I know the guy can't throw to himself, but still, Larry. Be a diva, write a book, complain! Do something. Just get them throw you the damn ball.
Who Wins: I'd love to call for an upset on national TV and have the gritty Cards pull off a Patriot-like upset. But I can't. Not with Patrick Willis and those guys coming for John "Red" Skelton or Kevin "Ribs" Kolb.
Can't see it.
5. Falcons vs Eagles
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Game: Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles
Why You Should Watch: OK, this is definitely a top five game to watch this week.
Eagles fans are tired of their team's up-and-down play. After coming off of a bye week and firing their defensive coordinator, Philly should be ready to put together two halves of good football on both sides of the ball. Yes, Atlanta is undefeated, and yes, Matt Ryan is playing lights-out, but they've gotten some lucky breaks and benefited from some really bad late-game decisions from opposing coaches.
Who Wins: You heard it here, folks: Michael Vick leads the Eagles to the biggest win of the year.
4. Seahawks vs Lions
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Game: Seattle Seahawks at Detroit Lions
Why You Should Watch: The Lions got beat up on Monday night by the Bears, so there might not be a worse team for them to be hosting as they try to lick their wounds. The Seahawks run the ball hard, talk trash on defense and they have a coach that refuses to stop his Red Bull IV drip.
Who Wins: I can already see some Lions DB sending Matthew Stafford a "U Mad, Bro" tweet after the game. The Seahawks might be for real.
3. Redskins vs Steelers
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Game: Washington Redskins at Pittsburgh Steelers
Why Should You Watch: RGIII has been the best dual threat in the league this year. Better than last year's phenom, Cam Newton. Better than the guy who everyone thought would change the QB position, Michael Vick. But unfortunately for the city of DC, his defense has let him down time and time again this year. How much more can the kid do?
Who Wins: I see Griffin doing more magical things this week in the steel city. But I also see him getting hit hard a few times. Enough to make him stay in the pocket. And just enough for the Steelers to win a close one.
2. Giants vs Cowboys
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Game: New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys
Why You Should Watch: You would think teams would be tired of watching Victor Cruz dance all over them and decide to cover the guy. But that hasn't happened ,and even though they have one of the hardest schedules in the league, the Giants are about to run away with the NFC East.
Who Wins: If the Cowboys have any aspirations of winning the division, they have to sweep the reigning Super Bowl champs this year. The rest of the division will be cheering for them.
Broncos vs Saints
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Game: New Orleans Saints at Denver Broncos
Why You Should Watch: Expect a couple of gunslingers to be going at it in Denver this weekend. No other game has more potential to be a shootout than this one. Both Manning and Brees can get hot and make opposing defenses look like they are standing still.
Who Wins: Looking at the remainder of the Saints schedule, it doesn't look like they will be going to the playoffs this year. So all Brees has to look forward to the rest of the year are these superstar QB shootouts.
He wins this one.