Then, both had to become starters, one much earlier than the other, and now both will face off against one another in Sunday’s NFC Championship game. The Raiders and Mack could not come to terms on a www.raycing.com contract extension, so Gruden bargained for future draft picks. Oakland must make up for the 40.5 sacks provided by Mack over the past four years. The Raiders defense will have to stop what could be the most explosive offense in the NFL. The big news in Chicago is, of course, the acquisition of Khalil Mack which many believe makes the Bears an instant contender in the NFC North.
The Seattle Seahawks are coming off a bye and look for another victory to improve to 6-0 on the season. Russell Wilson looks to continue his MVP caliber season, completing 72.8 percent of his passes for 1,502 yards, 19 touchdowns, and three interceptions. The underrated QB has a whopping 10 touchdown passes in his last three games.
Austin Ekeler led the ground game with 117 rushing yards and two total touchdowns. Defensively, Los Angeles held Derek Carr to under 200 yards passing. Los Angeles will have to turn in a similar effort next week to defend the run, a much tougher task against Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Despite the issues they’ve had with that to this point, the Chargers opened as one-point favorites against the Browns. Despite having fewer first downs, plays, and offensive yards than Washington, the Giants earned their first win of the season as they won the turnover battle and rushed for 132 yards as a team. On one of the Giants’ touchdowns, they started the drive at Washington’s 27-yard-line and the other was a defensive fumble return for a score.
The Cowboys’ offense mustered up 73 points while the defense gave up just 29. Running back Ezekiel Elliott, who is still dodging suspension, has come through big in both games rushing for over 100 yards in each as well as scoring a pair of touchdowns in both games. If that doesn’t change, the Lions may endure more pain at the hands of Green Bay. The Lions do not do very well at Lambeau Field, site of next Monday night’s game. In fact, Detroit has won exactly one game at the historic venue.
Now, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles face each other Sunday night in a game that will help determine playoff seeding in the AFC. The difference on Sunday could come down to defense where both teams have had their share of struggles. Both teams are known for their outstanding defensive coaching staffs, but both teams are in the middle of the standing in scoring defense. In the win over the Jets, New England ran the ball for 215 yards led by rookie Sony Michel’s 133. James White, who is also the team’s leading receiver with 67 receptions, had 73 yards on just nine carries. Mark Ingram, who missed the first four games of the season, is a capable threat as well with 440 yards rushing.
SUNDAY – The Raiders were favored -2.5 and early backers saw value under a field goal, moving the home team to -3, and -3.5 at BetRivers. SUNDAY – Early money influencing this spread was on the Jets, fresh off their bye week. Jets +7 at the opening number moved to +6.5 at a few books, while Patriots -7 was the mark at the others. THURSDAY – Some Dolphins buyback, even at under a field goal, hit to bump the spread to two points, while most books stayed at 2.5. SUNDAY – The Chiefs were favored by three points traveling to Tennessee ahead of the Titans’ Monday night tilt hosting the Bills. Early money hit the Chiefs enough to move the spread to four and 4.5.
The Dolphins finally somewhat resembled an NFL team in winning at home against the short-handed Steelers, who lost superstar QB Ben Roethlisberger early on. Even without Big Ben, the Steelers are tough to deal with as they have plenty of talent at skill positions, though. The Bills continue to crush against bad teams, so everyone is firing them in this spot. Keep an eye on the injury report, as LeSean McCoy exited Wednesday’s practice early with a hamstring injury. He’s one of the few true difference makers at RB, and it would put lots of pressure on Tyrod Taylor if he sits. It was an ugly day for the Browns defense as they allowed Marcus Mariota and the mediocre Titans offense to roll up 7.1 yards per play and basically do what they wanted.
Green Bay has won five in a row and are clicking on all cylinders. Besides the undefeated Arizona Cardinals, the Packers may just be the hottest team in the NFC, although fans of the Dallas Cowboys would probably disagree. The Packers offense is scoring, and the defense is making the plays at the right time. After cruising past the Chicago Bears on the road last week, being home against the Washington Football Team is a wonderful place to be in Week 7. On the other hand, the New York Jets (ML+270) have been nothing short of a dumpster fire. Despite their Week 4 upset win over the Tennessee Titans, a Titans team mind you that was missing its top two wide receivers, the Jets have been borderline unwatchable.
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