NFL Predictions Week 4: Detroit Lions and 8 Teams Destined to Tank
The Detroit Lions are 3-0, wow. Even though the Lions have been stockpiling talent for years know, not many people expected to ever see that record from them, at least not this year with the Packers coming off a Super Bowl win. The Lions may be 3-0, but their schedule ahead is much tougher than the one they started out with, and it appears as though they are destined to run into a wall. Sorry Lions fans, but it just doesn't seem like it's mean to be this week against Dallas and the rest of the way down the road.
It's not only the Lions that are destined for bad days on Sunday, there are several other teams that simply put, don't stand a chance. Most are obvious, but there are a few teams that may seem surprising to some fans being picked to putter out.
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The Seattle Seahawks are lucky they are in the NFC West and actually stand a shot at winning their division with yet another losing record, because if they were in any other division they would finish last this year. When the Seahawks take on the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, their only hope to win is if they can actually have the twelfth man on the field.
The Seahawks come into the game 1-2 on the year and enter the game with just 744 yards total offense on the year putting them 30th in the league. Their defense is far better than their offense ranking 10th in the league overall so far this season, but they cannot balance out the points for the team.
The Falcons are coming to town on Sunday and Matt Ryan & Co. are bringing the league's 13th best passing attack with them. Matt Ryan is going to take the Seahawks to town on Sunday. Seahawks quarterback Tavaris Jackson just isn't a guy that is good enough to win you games. A terrific back up, but he's no starter.
If the Seahawks want any chance at saving their dignity on Sunday, Kam Chancellor and Chris Clemons will need to step up and stop the Falcons from putting points on the board, because the Seattle offense sure as hell isn't going to be putting up any points of their own.
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The Jacksonville Jaguars are 1-2, how is it even possible that they defeated Tennessee in Week 1, this team is just awful. Just when you thought things couldn't get worse than Seattle, the Jags are 31st in overall offense going into a game against a high powered offense led by Drew Brees in the New Orleans Saints.
The Luke McCown led Jags have scored just one touchdown through the air all season, and McCown has thrown four interceptions already. Maurice Jones-Drew can't carry the team to a victory either, especially against a Saints rushing defense that has allowed just 90 yards a game all season.
It's a shame the Jags defense ranks fourth in the NFL through three weeks with their offense just unable to produce for them. The Jags are hopeless in 2011, and look for them to bomb against New Orleans on Saturday.
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The Kansas City Chiefs have themselves in the Andrew Luck sweepstakes early on this season. The Chiefs have begun the season 0-3 and have yet to put up more than 20 points all year. When the Chiefs take on the Minnesota Vikings this weekend they would normally have the chance to win, but not this year. The Vikings haven't been anything special this season and are also 0-3, but they are better than the Chiefs.
The Chiefs greatest asset is their running game, and Minnesota's greatest asset is their fourth ranked run defense. Expect the Vikes to force Matt Cassel to throw the ball in this one. Cassel seems lost without Charlie Weiss calling his plays and don't expect anything to change this week. Cassel has thrown for just three touchdowns and had five interceptions already on the year.
Against the 21st ranked pass defense of the Chiefs, Vikings quarterback Donovan McNabb finally has the opportunity to show why Minnesota picked him up in the off-season, and is poised for his biggest outing of the season.
Overall, the Chiefs are just too weak and disorganized in every aspect of the game, and there's no way they win this one, even if it is a battle of winless teams, the two aren't very comparable.
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The Denver Broncos are lucky to be just 1-2 on the year. The Broncos have won or lost by less than three points through three games this season. Their close calls will come to an end when they play at Lambeau Field against the defending Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers on Sunday. The Packers are going to pick the Broncos apart.
The Packers rank in the top-10 in both rushing and passing going into Week 4 and have the number one rushing defense in the league. This isn't good news for Knowshon Moreno in his return to the Broncos lineup. The Pack is also second in the league with five interceptions. Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton enters the game with three interceptions through three games already, and he is not the most accurate passer in the world so look for more Packers defensive backs to be taking the ball the other way in this one.
These two teams aren't even close, on one side are the Champs, and on the other, and inexperienced, subpar group trying to make ends meet. The Broncos will tank on Sunday.
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Say goodbye to your winning record Browns fans, the Titans are going to come into town and rob you this weekend. Sure the Titans aren't amazing this year, but their defense will be able to dominate the Browns offense.
Colt McCoy has thrown for just 634 yards and five touchdowns on the year, and running back Peyton Hillis has a dismal 151 yards through three games. The Titans defense is currently the number one defense in the league in terms of yards per game and second in points allowed per game. Sending the 22nd ranked running game and 25th ranked passing game isn't going to be very effective against the likes of Jason McCourty, Alterraun Verner, and Barrett Ruud.
Tim Hasselbeck and the Titans offense will be without star receiver Kenny Britt, but they still have Chris Johnson who should have a huge game rushing the ball against the 29th ranked run defense in the league.
The Titans are simply better at the things the Browns are bad at, and that is why they will stomp the Browns on Sunday.
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The Dolphins should be ready for another long season; they will be 0-4 after their date in San Diego on Sunday. Simply put, the Dolphins defense will not be able to stop Philip Rivers. Rivers has tossed for an average of 320 yards a game and has a total of four TDs on the year. With the Dolphins having the 30th ranked pass defense in the league it's game over, just like that. If Rivers has a big game the Fins lose, no ifs ands or buts about it.
Short, but sweet, the Dolphins defense won't stop the Chargers and look for a blowout.
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How quickly things change in the NFC West, the Arizona Cardinals went from a Super Bowl berth to under .500 two consecutive seasons in just two years. The Cardinals are back at it in the battle for the seemingly under .500 NFC West division title race, but a losing record isn't going to cut it against teams that can beat them.
When the Cards play host to the New York Giants on Sunday, the G-men could have found just what they were looking for, an easy win. The Giants haven't had the greatest start to the season and appear to be missing Steve Smith as a wide receiver, but Eli Manning wins games, no he's no Peyton, but he gets the job done. The same cannot be said for Kevin Kolb's early days as Arizona's starting quarterback. Kolb's TD to INT margin is just +2, and with the likes of Antrelle Rolle, Kenny Phillips, and Aaron Ross running around downfield, Kolb cannot afford to make mistakes against the star-studded Giants defense.
Defensively for the Cards, they are ranked 27th in the league overall and if they can't slow down Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw they are going to spend a lot of time chasing the ball to the end zone in this one.
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Poor Oakland, they finally had things seemingly figured out for the first time in years, but now they have to welcome Bill Belichick and Tom Brady to town fresh off their devastating loss to the Bills last week. We all know that the Pats are going to roll over the Raiders in this one, even if the Raiders play their best game all season.
The Patriots don't lose two in a row, that is it. The Pats were embarrassed last week when they gave up 24 unanswered points to the Bills, and need to redeem themselves. What better way to do that than embarrass the Raiders. Despite their 2-1 record and number one rushing game, the Raiders defense is still awful and the brilliant Tom Brady will meticulously pick it apart this weekend. Expect a blowout victory from the Pats in this one.
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The Detroit Lions Cinderella story was nice, but it is time for them to take their first loss of the season. The Lions will crumble under the pressure of playing on the big stage in Dallas. The Cowboys, led by Tony Romo, who is miraculously still playing despite broken ribs and a punctured lung, are just better coached in this one.
Jason Garrett will out coach Jim Schwartz in this one. Schwartz and the Lions have thrived on Matthew Stafford's ability to stay composed and throw the ball well through the first few games this season, but against the Cowboys he can expect to be blitzed, a lot. Anything the Cowboys can do to shake Stafford up and limit the amount of passing plays the better, and with the Lions woes on offensive line, it should be expected that the Cowboys lay a few pops on Stafford before this game is over. If they eliminate the pass they will win the game.
The Cowboys are far better on the defensive side of the ball than the Lions, and Romo, despite his injuries, should have a field day on Sunday afternoon, especially with the vertical routes he has with speedy receiver Miles Austin (and Dez Bryant if able) to get by the secondary and in for scores. This won't be a blowout, but any Lions loss at this point will come as a shock as we all got so used to them finally winning some games.