With another wild week of NFL action out of the way, it’s time to predict which overrated teams will be exposed in Week 13.
The playoffs are approaching fast, and the process of separating the contenders from the pretenders will continue this week as some top teams fall to lesser opponents.
If the following teams lose in Week 13, they must be considered possible pretenders heading towards the playoffs.
Some will make the postseason, and some will never be able to recover from this week’s loss.
San Diego Chargers
Cincinnati at San Diego
With six losses in the last seven games, the San Diego Chargers will be the home team Sunday, but they will choke away yet another win against the tough Cincinnati Bengals. I’m noticing a trend.
The Bengals have won three straight games coming into Week 13, and the continued emergence of wide receiver A.J. Green and his rapport with second-year starting QB Andy Dalton has the team on the right track for a late season run at a wild-card spot.
There is little doubt that the odds will be in favor of the Chargers Sunday, but as long as the Bengals play to their strengths and capitalize on San Diego’s inevitable mistakes, Cincinnati will walk away from the West Coast with a huge victory.
Prediction: Cincinnati 34, San Diego 24
Indianapolis at Detroit
On paper this game should be an easy win for the talented Detroit Lions, but five wins in the last six games for the Indianapolis Colts proves this won’t be a walk in the park for Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and the Lions’ stars.
Besides a blowout loss to the New England patriots in Week 11, the Colts’ defense has been stingy.
With Detroit not playing as well as they should on the offensive side of the ball, the Lions shouldn’t expect more than 24 points against Indianapolis.
Led by rookie Andrew Luck, the Colts have proven to be one of the most dangerous offenses in the league despite having a porous running game. If Indianapolis can beat the Lions' 21st-ranked run defense, the space will open up for Luck to pick apart a depleted Detroit secondary.
Prediction: Indianapolis 27, Detroit 24
New Orleans at Atlanta
With the New Orleans Saints heading to Atlanta to play the Falcons in their building, Drew Brees and company will shock the NFL world by capitalizing on the injuries in the secondary and steal the win Thursday night.
Atlanta has looked mediocre on both sides of the ball over the last four games, and the Saints will be able to use their emerging rushing attack to complement the team’s air assault and control the clock.
While the Falcons may be one of the most dominant teams in their own building, the familiarity between these two teams (NFC South foes) will even the playing field.
Despite New Orleans losing in Week 12 against a brutally tough San Francisco 49ers team, it will bounce back this week against Atlanta.
Prediction: New Orleans 44, Atlanta 30
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