NFL Predictions Week 3: Home Teams That Don't Stand a Chance
Normally home teams have a huge advantage in NFL games, but there are some matchups in Week 3 that heavily favor the road team.
The Tennessee Titans are 1-1 to start the year but could very well fall to 1-2 thanks to a tough matchup with the explosive San Diego Chargers offense.
In Baltimore, the Ravens will welcome the Houston Texans into town in what will be a much tougher contest than their Week 2 game.
The Miami Dolphins have started off on the right foot this season with a 2-0 record. However, they will have their first true test of the season when they take on the Atlanta Falcons.
Let's take a look at each of these matchups and find out why the home teams don't stand a chance.
Tennessee Titans (vs. San Diego Chargers)
The San Diego Chargers offense has been impressive the first two weeks of the season, and that trend should continue in Week 3 against the Titans.
Phillip Rivers rebounded after a shaky Week 1 loss to the Houston Texans by throwing for 419 yards and three touchdowns against the Philadelphia Eagles. Not to mention, the Chargers rushing attack performed admirably with 126 yards on the ground to the tune of 4.1 yards per carry.
The Titans will have an issue with this kind of balance as was evident in their Week 2 loss to the Texans. Granted, the Titans did come close to topping Houston in that game, but Tennessee's defense is looking shaky at best after allowing 452 total yards of offense.
San Diego will bring arguably an even better passing attack to the table than what Tennessee faced last week, and that's bad news for the Titans. Rivers should have plenty of time to throw the rock, and that will lead to a big day through the air as the Titans defense gets exposed once again.
To make matters worse, Tennessee hasn't been able to throw the ball effectively thanks to lackluster play from quarterback Jake Locker. There's no way the Titans can score enough to match the points the Chargers will be putting on the board.
Final Score: Chargers 34, Titans 17
Baltimore Ravens (vs. Houston Texans)
The Ravens are lucky to be 1-1. After getting crushed by the Denver Broncos in Week 1, the Ravens were fortunate to take on the lowly Cleveland Browns in Week 2. Even with that favorable opponent, the Ravens were only able to score 14 points and barely escaped with a win.
The biggest issue for Baltimore is its rushing attack. Running back Ray Rice hasn't gotten off to a good start to the season with just 72 yards on the ground through two games, which is good enough for 2.9 yards per carry.
According to ESPN.com, Rice is listed as questionable and may not be 100 percent for this game should he play.
That's horrible news for Baltimore as the Texans boast a solid rush defense that doesn't allow big gains. And, after the Broncos torched the Ravens' pass defense in the season-opener, Texans quarterback Matt Schaub figures to have another big game similar to the two stellar performances he's had during the first two weeks.
Baltimore has yet to face a squad with the kind of balance on offense that Houston has enjoyed this season. The Texans' two-headed rushing attack and dangerous air game will enable them to get into the end zone early, and often and the Ravens don't have enough firepower to keep up.
Final Score: Texans 28, Ravens 14
Miami Dolphins (vs. Atlanta Falcons)
The Dolphins have been fortunate to take on two unbalanced teams to start the season. Against the Browns, the Dolphins had an opponent that couldn't move the ball on offense. Versus the Colts, the Dolphins enjoyed playing against a porous defense that allowed them to move the ball almost at will.
The Atlanta Falcons will be a much different opponent in Week 3. Not only does Atlanta sport one of the best passing attacks in the NFL, but the Falcons can also play some solid defense. With the exception of three bad quarters in the first two weeks, Atlanta's defense has done more than enough to give the team a chance to win in both games.
Interestingly enough, it's the Falcons offense that has been a bit disappointing. Despite that, things are looking up after a good performance against the St. Louis Rams last week. It's nothing short of scary to think that Atlanta's offense hasn't even really hit its stride yet.
Matt Ryan and company will have no problem throwing the ball all over the field as the Dolphins are No. 20 in the NFL against the pass. And, considering the Dolphins haven't been all that good with the run, they will be predictable enough that the Falcons can cheat against the pass while daring the Dolphins to run the ball with what has been a mediocre ground game.
Quarterback Ryan Tannehill is going to have a long day without any support from Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas because the Falcons are No. 8 against the run. Expect a ton of mistakes from the sophomore quarterback as a result of extra throws, and giving extra possessions to a potent offense like the Falcons is a recipe for a blowout.
Final Score: Falcons 38, Dolphins 10
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