Week 10 NFL Picks: Breaking Down Primetime Matchups
After a rousing Week 9 in the NFL, the playoff picture is beginning to take shape, with some teams holding commanding leads in their respective divisions.
Several playoff contenders, including one led by a rookie quarterback, are featured in Week 10's prime-time matchups.
Will these contenders step forward or take a step back?
Here's a look at Week 10's prime-time games, complete with predictions.
Thursday: Indianapolis Colts at Jacksonville Jaguars
The Jaguars are 1-7 this season. Their sole victory came against the Colts.
The difference this time around is that Andrew Luck has improved.
Luck completed 30 of 48 passes for 433 yards and two touchdowns against the Miami Dolphins in Week 9. In the Colts' last three wins, he's averaged 8.0 yards per pass attempt while tossing three touchdowns to one interception.
Jacksonville is in the middle of the pack when it comes to pass defense. The Jaguars have allowed 7.1 yards per pass attempt this season, 15th in the NFL. They allowed Matthew Stafford to throw for 285 yards while averaging 8.6 yards per attempt in a 31-14 loss last week.
On top of that, the Colts held Reggie Bush to 4.1 yards per carry last week and kept Chris Johnson under 100 yards rushing in Week 8.
Prediction: Indianapolis 23, Jaguars 17
Sunday: Houston Texans at Chicago Bears
Which team will win on Sunday?
This should be a fun game to watch. It should also be a nail-biter.
The Bears dropped 51 points on the Tennessee Titans last week. The passing game and the running game looked seamless.
On the other hand, the Bears face the 7-1 Texans on Sunday, the same Texans who blasted the Baltimore Ravens in Week 7 by a score of 43-13.
These are also the same Texans who in have sacked Joe Flacco four times and racked up two sacks and 10 quarterback hits on Ryan Fitzpatrick in their past two games.
The Bears have allowed 28 sacks this season, third-most in the NFL. The last time they faced a team ranked in the top 10 in sacks, they eked out a 23-22 victory over the Carolina Panthers.
Houston has a much better offense than Carolina this season. Thus, the Texans will win in Chicago.
Prediction: Houston 24, Chicago 21
Monday: Kansas City Chiefs at Pittsburgh Steelers
I shouldn't even have to explain this one.
The Chiefs have lost their last five games, including a 31-13 loss to the San Diego Chargers last week. They are 1-7 on the season.
The Steelers have won their last three games, including a 24-20 victory over the New York Giants last week.
The Chiefs can't stop the pass. They have allowed 8.9 yards per pass attempt (worst in the NFL) and 17 passing touchdowns this season. The Steelers rely on Ben Roethlisberger's arm.
End. Of. Story.
Prediction: Pittsburgh 31, Kansas City 16
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