NFL Picks Week 5: Breaking Down Sunday's Biggest Upsets
Week 5 of the 2013 NFL regular season is upon us, and the focus has shifted to which matchups could yield the biggest upsets.
All of the following games have a clear favorite, but the underdogs will not get the memo. There will be several marquee teams on upset alert this week.
All stats via NFL.com and ESPN.
|Date||Matchup||Predicted Winner||Time (ET)||Watch|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||New Orleans at Chicago||New Orleans Saints||1 p.m.||FOX|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||New England at Cincinnati||New England Patriots||1 p.m.||CBS|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Detroit at Green Bay||Green Bay Packers||1 p.m.||FOX|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Kansas City at Tennessee||Kansas City Chiefs||1 p.m.||CBS|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Seattle at Indianapolis||Seattle Seahawks||1 p.m.||FOX|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Jacksonville at St. Louis||St. Louis Rams||1 p.m..||CBS|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Baltimore at Miami||Miami Dolphins||1 p.m.||CBS|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Philadelphia at NY Giants||Philadelphia Eagles||1 p.m.||FOX|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Carolina at Arizona||Arizona Cardinals||4:05 p.m.||FOX|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Denver at Dallas||Denver Broncos||4:25 p.m.||CBS|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||Houston at San Francisco||Houston Texans||8:30 p.m.||NBC|
|Sunday, Oct. 6||San Diego at Oakland||San Diego Chargers||11:35 p.m.||NFL|
|Monday, Oct. 7||NY Jets at Atlanta||New York Jets||8:30 p.m.||ESPN|
Houston vs. San Francisco
The Houston Texans will be on the road against the San Francisco 49ers in Week 5, but the 49ers have been put on upset alert by a Texans team led by quarterback Matt Schaub that will be desperate for redemption.
Not only is Houston coming off a devastating overtime loss to the Seattle Seahawks, but the defeat at the hands of the defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens in Week 3 also has Houston in serious trouble.
With the ninth-ranked pass offense and seventh-ranked passing attack, the Texans possess the firepower to push San Francisco’s heralded defense to its limit. Even with veteran linebacker Patrick Willis likely back in the lineup for the 49ers, per Steve Corkran, Houston is desperate to get back to its winning ways.
The Texans will also use their stingy pass defense—the best in the league allowing only 141 yards through the air per game—to keep 49ers star quarterback Colin Kaepernick from making an impact Sunday with his arm.
Houston will have trouble stopping San Francisco’s rushing attack, but the Texans have enough firepower of their own to outscore the 49ers.
Predicted Final Score: Houston 30, San Francisco 27
New York Jets vs. Atlanta Falcons
The New York Jets are coming off a lopsided loss to the Tennessee Titans, and the Atlanta Falcons lost to the New England Patriots to start the season 1-3. In what could be the ultimate trap game on Monday Night Football, the Jets will stun the Falcons and win the game.
Atlanta is terrible against the pass this season (26th in the NFL allowing 301 yards per game), and that will be the breathing room rookie quarterback Geno Smith needs to function in the New York offense.
The Jets could also see the return of halfback Chris Ivory this week after he returned to practice, per Rich Cimini of ESPN New York, and that would relieve some of the pressure on starting running back Bilal Powell by creating a more balanced offense.
The Falcons are dealing with injuries to big-name stars like wide receivers Julio Jones and Roddy White and RB Steven Jackson, and the Jets' eighth-ranked pass defense and fifth-ranked run-stopping effort will hurt Matt Ryan’s chances of shining at home.
Look for New York to keep the score close and win with a late fourth-quarter drive.
Predicted Final Score: New York 21, Atlanta 20
Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants
Despite having zero wins this season, the New York Giants are favored in the matchup against the Philadelphia Eagles in MetLife Stadium. That has set the stage for yet another upset in the NFC East, and it’s proving to be one of the worst divisions in football this season.
While the Eagles have struggled under new head coach Chip Kelly as both the offense and defense learn new schemes and formations, the Giants enter another year under Tom Coughlin with no reason for their futility.
Not only is New York the 30th-ranked run offense in the league, but the 19th-ranked pass defense and 28th-ranked run-stopping unit also give Philadelphia hope that the team can upset the Giants in front of their fans.
This divisional matchup will not be pretty—expect several turnovers and penalties from both teams—but the Eagles have the offensive firepower with quarterback Michael Vick and running back LeSean McCoy to steal the victory.
Predicted Final Score: Philadelphia 24, New York 21
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