NFL Week 6 Predictions: How Winless Teams Will Fare This Weekend
We've already seen one NFL team come up short in its pursuit of win No. 1 of the 2013 season, but three more winless teams will be in action in Week 6.
The New York Giants had their chances to knock off the Chicago Bears on Thursday night, but Eli Manning and Co. were plagued by turnovers yet again and the franchise is now 0-6 for the first time since the 1976 season.
Which winless team has the best chance to record a victory in Week 6?
The Jacksonville Jaguars, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Pittsburgh Steelers are also winless in 2013. Tampa Bay played a close game against Arizona in Week 5, but didn't do enough with various opportunities to overcome adversity.
Since there's another chance to try to turn things around this weekend for the winless crew, we'll take a look at the likelihood that each team collects its first victory of the season below.
*For a complete look at the remaining Week 6 NFL schedule, visit NFL.com.
Jacksonville Jaguars (0-5) vs. Denver Broncos (5-0)
I won't sugarcoat it for you, Jags fans. You aren't getting your first win this week.
The Denver Broncos are an obvious Super Bowl contender through five weeks of play, and are fresh off a 51-point performance in a win over the Dallas Cowboys. Simply put, the kind of offensive mastery put together by Peyton Manning and Co. has been scary.
Chad Henne will get the start at quarterback for Jacksonville, and on paper, there's reasonable evidence to suggest Justin Blackmon, Cecil Shorts and Maurice Jones-Drew have enough talent to put together a solid offensive performance against a Denver defense that has struggled this year.
But the way the Broncos are playing right now, Manning could easily lead his unit to a 28-point outburst in the first quarter.
Playing in Denver and with plenty of momentum, the Broncos won't need any of their regular starters to continue by the end of the third quarter.
Prediction: Denver 42, Jacksonville 20
Philadelphia Eagles (2-3) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-4)
There are so many distractions right now in Tampa Bay that it doesn't even feel like football is the main focus.
Between Josh Freeman's exit, the unsettling feeling you get when hearing about the dynamic between Greg Schiano and his players and news that in addition to Lawrence Tynes and Carl Nicks, a third player tested positive for the MRSA virus, it's hard to remember there's a game this weekend.
The opponent won't be sympathetic to the Buccaneers' problems.
Tampa Bay's defense has actually been a bright spot this season, but it will face a fierce test against the Philadelphia Eagles and Chip Kelly's uptempo offense.
I like the Bucs to keep things close at home, but this team severely lacks mental fortitude right now and there's a rookie quarterback (Mike Glennon) under center. Add it all up, and it smells like another loss for a franchise in complete disarray.
Prediction: Philadelphia 31, Tampa Bay 27
Pittsburgh Steelers (0-4) vs. New York Jets (3-2)
Pittsburgh was on the brink of a win in London, but couldn't convert in the red zone in the waning seconds as the Minnesota Vikings held on for the tight win.
That was two weeks ago, and the Steelers have had a long period of time to both let that loss resonate and prepare for this week's opponent—the New York Jets.
The Jets are one of the NFL's most surprising teams at 3-2; Rex Ryan's defense has returned to form and is fresh off a 30-28 win over the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome on Monday Night Football. Rookie Geno Smith was outstanding, tossing three touchdowns to just four incompletions.
However, the extended layoff will reenergize Mike Tomlin's team this week. Pittsburgh is a team that traditionally prepares well for opponents, and two weeks of prep time is a gift for this coaching staff given the current circumstances.
Additionally, the Jets have struggled to win consecutive games over the past few seasons. ESPN's Rich Cimini explains:
The Pittsburgh defense will look to force Smith to make mistakes, and last week not withstanding, he's been prone to turning the ball over in his first few starts.
It won't be easy to go to the Meadowlands and knock off an AFC East contender, but with Le'Veon Bell in the lineup and Ben Roethlisberger perfectly capable of executing a game plan that's been in the making since the end of Week 4, I like the Steelers to pull off the road win and breathe some life into their season.
Prediction: Pittsburgh 21, New York 16
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