NFL Predictions Week 6: Teams That Will Continue Disappointing Seasons
Entering into the sixth week of the NFL season, a team's poor start can no longer be written off as an aberration.
Take the New York Giants, for instance.
They've built a reputation as a poor starting team that starts to find its form just as its head coach and starting quarterback come under the most fire. After each loss, you just keep expecting New York to turn things around.
Only it isn't. The team just continues looking worse and worse. It's reached the point where everybody has just accepted the Giants are one of the worst teams in the league.
While these three teams aren't quite at New York's level of stink, they will continue their slow starts to the season and continue strengthening that draft position.
It's hard to find the right label for this NFC East clash. You can't call it a battle of the behemoths because both teams have losing records, while it's not exactly a pillow fight because either team could be first in the division by day's end.
The one thing you can count on is that this game will be a defensive struggle, in that both defenses will struggle to get any stops.
Football Outsiders has the Dallas Cowboys ranked 23rd in defensive efficiency, whereas the Washington Redskins are a few spots down, at 27th.
Don't bet against Tony Romo to torch another secondary; only this time Peyton Manning won't be on the other sideline. Late interception against the Denver Broncos aside, Romo's been playing some of the best football of his career.
In addition, DeMarco Murray has been good enough so as to attract the defense's attention.
The Cowboys defense will end up losing a lot of games. However, the Redskins defense will lose even more games. Go with the less awful unit on Sunday.
No matter how the Josh Freeman experiment works out in Minnesota, it should be fun to watch. Either Freeman is going to be the quarterback Adrian Peterson deserves, or he'll be even worse than Christian Ponder and cause more trouble than he's worth.
The Vikings have already announced Freeman won't get the start on Sunday, via ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Vikings HC Leslie Frazier said QB Josh Freeman will not start Sunday vs. Carolina.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) October 7, 2013
Maybe he'll get on the field against the Carolina Panthers, but even if he does, he's unlikely to make a huge difference.
You can't get a good read on the Carolina Panthers this season. They're 1-3, but they could easily be 2-2 or even 3-1 if a couple of plays go the other way.
After an abject performance against the Arizona Cardinals, expect a strong response from Carolina.
Against what is a suspect Minnesota run defense, the Panthers should be able to eat up yards on the ground.
If Eli Manning showed us anything, it's that inconsistent quarterbacks can at least provide consistency in finding new ways to enrage the fanbase.
While Matt Schaub has not yet reached Eli levels of awful, he's knocking on the door. Slowly but surely, he's deteriorated to a mere shell of his former self.
It's begun to affect the entire team, as well. The defense can no longer cover up for his deficiencies. When you're giving the ball away to the other team the way Schaub is, that team has way too many opportunities to score.
The St. Louis Rams have one of those tricky offenses. Football Outsiders has the Rams ranked 26th in offensive efficiency. With Zac Stacy's strong performance last week, St. Louis may also have a rushing presence to take pressure off Sam Bradford.
Until Schaub can prove he's still something resembling an NFL quarterback, don't hold your breath. He hasn't done enough this season to earn the benefit of the doubt anymore.
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