And with that, ladies and gentlemen, we are live and welcome to sports Caster news.
Welcome to this Sunday pregame edition.
As always, my name is Ray.
I'm here with my boys, Lawrence, Keith and Joe.
It's God's Day in its football day.
Gentlemen, how are you? You know, sleepy.
I've been up for a few hours, man, doing nothing but thinking about today's games because there is, ah, slate of a couple of them that that looked to be really good and some of them that you could probably sleep through gonna be some surprises today.
I don't like these spreads.
These spreads air, putting too much confidence in some of these teams.
So I'm looking forward to it.
This is, Ah, really strange week to pick football games.
I struggled with picking the games this week, some of them great matchups like the Packers and the Colts.
And then you've got games like the Eagles and the Browns, which I expect to be a bad game.
And I don't see a clear favorite in that game, and obviously we'll get into that as we do our picks.
But another game that's gonna happen today, which is near and dear to my heart, is the New England Patriots versus the Houston Texans.
The Patriots have suddenly clawed their way out of it.
Looks like their season was over to a chance to go 500 today could be a bad day for the Buffalo Bills.
They could lose the bye week of both the Patriots and the Dolphins pull off victories today that will cut the lead over the Patriots to two and tie them.
They'll have the tiebreaker, but basically have the identical records of the Miami Dolphins.
But I want to focus on that Patriots game, but not on the Patriots.
I wanna focus on the Houston Texans because the reports are now coming out that they are ready to do a complete front office coaching staff overhaul.
Obviously, Bill O'Brien was fired this year after a disastrous start.
I think it's fair to say that this was an underachieving season for this team.
I think the expectations were not just high in Houston.
I think it was high amongst payer amongst football fans who believed that Houston was gonna be a competitive team this year.
Obviously, their record is not indicative of a team that is playing well, sitting at two and seven right now, not forgetting that they're not trying to tank and fight for a Trevor Lawrence draft pick.
That draft pick is gonna be in the grasp of the Miami Dolphins.
Come to 2021 draft day.
So right now, Vice President Jack Ester be He's serving as the general manager, has no intentions of doing it.
They don't see Romeo Crennel as the guy to be the permanent head coach, which makes sense.
You still got a star studded lineup into Shawn Watson.
You still got J.
Obviously, the trade away of DeAndre Hopkins is here.
But, Lawrence, I'm going to start with you because I'm surprised by the impact of DeAndre Hopkins absence, not because of who he is as a player.
But when you look at the remaining talent and the talent they added around to Shawn Watson and Brandon Cooks, they still had will full.
Or you got Randall Cobb.
You got Kenny Stills.
Yes, not a single one of those guys is DeAndre Hopkins, but it really gave to Sean watching four fabulous outlets to put the football, too.
I think any one of us would be happy with that wide receiving corps in our team, maybe minus key to has one of the best provide receiving course in the league when they're up and running.
Lawrence, Are you surprised by how poorly Texas Houston has been this year? I mean, and it really hasn't gotten that much better since Bill O Brien's departure.
What surprised me was last week against the Browns.
I mean, that was an awful game on both awful game on both sides, 17 total points scored.
But since Bill O'Brien has been out, if you take away that Browns game, the Texans have scored 30 20 36 27 respectively.
So this offense, since Bill O Brien's been out has actually been putting up points.
They've just been losing because this defense has been terrible, especially the past defense.
So, um, yeah, that's where I'm actually more disappointed in with this Texas Team Mawr.
So than the passing game.
The running game is in a Is it there? I'm curious to know what in the world made them think that letting go of Carlos Hyde over Duke Johnson and keeping Duke Johnson was the right move.
I don't I don't understand that.
I will throw out.
I do agree with you.
Since o Brien's departure, we've seen a lot of points come out.
But I think it's also fair to say that two of those games where against Jacksonville one of them was against Green Bay, which could be a suspect defense that time and once was against Tennessee, who's been suspect at times on the defensive side of things.
Joe, I'm gonna turn to you because Houston, I think, couldn't have had a worse start to the season, not just to win loss records, but you have to go.
Kansas City, Baltimore, Pittsburgh to start your season before you go in face Minnesota.
Obviously, they start going three on the year.
It was just a gauntlet right off the hop away from Bill O Brien.
Do you think that just having that Oh, and three started having to go through the defending Super Bowl champions, the reigning M V P and then now the only undefeated team in the league? Do you think that that a 13 start is what derailed their season before they could even get started? It's possible.
I will say it's possible, but I did just want to say that it's it's interesting What a difference a number one receiver makes on a team, right? Just wanted to put that out there, but, um, yeah, I think that they probably should have known going into the schedule with the gauntlet, as you said that they had to face that.
Hey, we're probably not going to do to, well, to start off the season.
So maybe we should temper expectations a little bit.
Or maybe they actually Bill O Brien, for some reason, fed or allowed themselves to feed into Bill O Brien's lies and say, Hey, we got a shot.
We got a shot just like everybody else.
You know? Um, yeah, the Texas.
They need to change from the from the head down, like like from everywhere.
Just the culture, the everything, the drafting.
Everything needs to be changed.
It does because I think you're fine.
Like Lawrence has said, on offense your asses.
Long as you have to Shawn Watson, you give him a few weapons.
They should be fine on offense.
It's time to build up the defense if you really want to compete in the A F. C.
You gotta have both.
It's plain and simple because the A F.
C is so tough right now.
So yeah, I think that they This is a good decision making organizational changes because they don't have a first round draft pick like you mentioned race.
So yeah, they need to just it's kind of rebuild.
But also you got to try to win a long as you've got to Shawn Watson there.
So yeah, it's it's kind of tough.
It's a tough situation to be in now.
It's a really interesting fact.
I want to stay with you, Joe for a second cause you said You know, you have to build that defense and you need both.
But let's be honest.
If I sat down preseason with you and laid out their defensive roster and their offensive roster and said, which is the better unit, there's a lot of people out there that would probably lean towards the defense.
We knew that the cornerbacks were a little bit suspect, but this linebacking corps has completely underperform, not be able to stop the run.
Um, I was a big proponent of Patriot of the Patriots trying to make trades for Houston linebackers because they had so many talented guys.
They didn't need all of them.
They've been fine on the pass rush, but they haven't really done anything else.
They're not being great in coverage.
What do you think has been just the problem this season? Why these guys have just who we've seen who have performed in the past, Um, not performing going into this season? Is this just indicative of maybe aging players who it's, you know, it's starting to get the best of them.
Are these guys with big contracts who didn't like their coach and have checked out, And now they think the season's over like this is, This is where my confusion with Houston comes because this defense shouldn't be bad.
When you look on who they are on paper.
Well, so Romeo Coronel correct me for among he's a defensive guy, right? He was defensive coordinator.
Okay, so I mean, a lot of it could go on him, you know, it's it could be an amalgamation of things.
Yeah, I think the secondary has they've tried to build up that secondary as much as they could and just taking some gambles on some players, and it doesn't end up working now.
I actually thought they played a lot better when you know when we played them.
But turns out our offense is just horrible and we can't really pass the ball.
So probably that was the reason that I thought their secondary was decent.
Um, but yeah, I mean, it could be the players.
Maybe their heart wasn't in it.
Maybe they just weren't convinced by Bill O Brien.
Has a lot of us were eso? It could honestly be an amalgamation of things.
But, you know, you got to draft, right.
You've got to get the right players in, and you gotta change that culture.
Like I said, you gotta start having a winning type of mentality and that starts at the top.
And it's funny that you talk about Cornell, and maybe he's a little bit of the issue, because if you talk to any Patriots fan in the lead, they'll tell you he's when it comes to that dynasty of 20 years.
Cornell was the greatest defensive coordinator on that the Patriots ever had, you know, especially another Bilbao check, especially those first three years of championships.
But we've seen Bill Belichick guys go off his coordinators and have successes.
Coordinator and Cornell has been the defensive coordinator genes for ever in, ah, in the assistant head coach and forever in Houston.
Bill O'Brien took him with him.
Keith, I wanna go to you because I wanna build on something that, uh, Joe said, he said, You know, isn't it amazing not having a number one receiver? Now? Do you think that Houston made a mistake on offense because they still look as Will Fuller is their number one receiver? Okay, I want you to eliminate Brandon Cooks season.
Last year he was dealing with all the concussion issues.
He was, you know, he was playing injured.
I think he had 14 games, but he wasn't playing a lot of snaps prior to last season.
1200 yards, 1000 yards, 1100 yards, 1100 yards.
You know, nine touchdowns, eight touchdown, seven touchdowns, five touchdowns.
And he's on pace for another 1000 yards this season.
Is it time to start putting him in that wide receiver one position and trying to move off of that because he has that speed, but they're trying to me they're trying to create Will Fuller as the next DeAndre Hopkins to try to repeat the things that he could.
You know, those contested catches and, you see, do Sean.
If you look at the targets that Sean has targeted Fuller more than anybody else on the field, is it time to maybe start running the offense to Brandon cooks a little bit? I mean, I think they made an effort to try and get the ball in the Cook's hands immediately after O'Brien was gone.
But he's not that kind of receiver.
If he was the number one receiver, he wouldn't have already played for four teams.
E mean, he's got a great skill set speed, and he could be a good complement to a number one guy.
But he's not the number one guy, which makes me also think about.
Imagine being on the Texans and you lose hot.
No, do whatever they call, uh, professor receiver, arguably in the league.
And as soon as you see that deal get done, it's like we're going in the wrong direction now.
Even before the Hopkins Steel Jadeveon Clowney right? That's another name.
A guy on their team that they lost.
That was a star on their teeth.
Here's another name.
Dwayne Brown, right? Another guy that was a star on there.
So it's like when you're when you're in that locker room and you're watching some of the best players in the NFL leave J.
I don't know that they come out about the culture and how guys they're showing up for work there with seven and guys.
They're smiling and guys air happy.
And he also spoke to Spoke about like the only way to get better at football is to practice football.
Kind of saying that guys aren't here enough. J.
Watt is the first guy in last guy out type of guy, and he's speaking to the media about how that culture is not there.
So I think they made some wrong decisions with their personnel with their players, which was driven by Bill O Brien.
And now there's trouble in the locker room between the players.
You know, some of these guys probably aren't going as hard as a J.
Watt from these guys.
They're just collecting a check and they do need to start over from top to bottom, rebuilding that culture and that organization.
It wasn't that long ago that we saw Arian Foster and those guys wearing varsity jackets rolling into play the Patriots.
And now you look at him like they should be focusing on a top draft pick.
But their top draft picks gonna go to the Dolphins.
Yeah, it's in a bad spot, man.
Just to improve that Miami defense, I will defend Brandon cooks a little bit by.
He's played for four different teams.
Brandon Cook has just been in really bad situations to stay on four different teams.
Let's not forget, when he was traded to the Patriots for a first round pick that they had to choose between Michael Thomas, Alvin Kamara and Brandon Cooks.
All three of them were coming up out of the rookie contracts all at the same time.
And we're gonna cost a boatload.
New Orleans didn't have the money to do that.
The Patriots knew they didn't have the money to give him the big extension, and it was a one year rental in L.
Was just been so poor with their contracts and everything else that they had to shed salary E, Todd Gurley and Brandon cooks being shipped out of town.
So he just seems to always end up on teams that have to shed salary and and can't keep them around.
But, yeah, the Houston situation is I think that to me.
When you asked me what was your biggest surprise of the season, it's the Houston Texans being two and seven.
That's not what I had them winning the division in a very big on their two wins being against the worst team in the league, a great playoff game last year, that that was one of most exciting games that they won last year in the playoffs.
You were not expecting them to take this much off a step back this year.
Well, it to me, though, it's almost as if from the moment the Kansas City Chiefs took the lead in that playoff games.
Houston hasn't been right, you know, coming in now in tow, nine games into the season.
It's like they've never recovered off of that off of that blow.
And we've seen that in times with teams where you know, you look at Jacksonville after they lost the A F C championship game.
They never recovered in.
That team fell apart at the seams after that, and it just been a very shocking year.
Alright, boys, let's get into today's games.
That's enough about the Houston Texans again, a weird slate of games to look at today.
Obviously, the Seattle Seahawks defeated the Arizona Cardinals.
The rest of the crew on Thursday of myself and Lawrence and Adam were all wrong.
We all had Arizona winning that game.
We also broke down.
Just were surprised how CIA not surprised at Seattle.
One we said they could win were surprised how they won.
And we discussed that on Thursday.
Defense and running, you know, to to things that you wouldn't expect the Seattle Seahawks.
He used to win a football game, and now you've got another strange game.
You got to three and six Atlanta Falcons taking on the seven and two Taysom Hill led New Orleans Saints.
Now we also now shout out to Drew Brees, 11 cracked ribs.
That guy gutted it out as long as he could.
I think that we have seen the end of an era and that I don't see Drew you know Drew Brees coming back after this season? Uh, to me, I'm immensely disappointed that we're gonna lose one of the greats of the game.
Uh, this way, you know, it was you kind of wish you could have went out on his own terms.
I can't see him coming back to, what, 43 years old and coming off this type of injury.
But let's look at this game.
I mean, 80% of the voters air taking New Orleans to win this game.
But there's no Drew Brees there.
It'll be a very different offense with Taysom Hill.
Obviously, you're going to see a lot of different run options and that kind of thing.
Jameis Winston wasn't even getting starter snaps this week.
Very surprising to people.
I wasn't surprised Tasting, making $8 million.
Winston's making one million, you know, at some point, and I mean New Orleans has been that said that he's the future.
At some point, you gotta let him play last year's Teddy Bridgewater.
This year it's Taysom Hill.
I'll start with you.
Can Atlanta take advantage of a Drew Brees list team and and pull off the victory today and improve the four winds? Well, uh, yeah, they can, um, they won.
What's two of their last four? Three of their last three of their last four.
I mean, my goodness, the Falcons, they started the season off awful.
And as of late, this this offense passing wise has been able to keep up with some pretty good offenses in the NFL.
And even though they're not going to know what to expect with Taysom Hill under center, I do feel as though Atlanta will be trying to expect more of, ah, that whole running quarterback option thing going, because that's what everybody's going to think about when when Taysom Hill is under center the majority of the game.
If Jason is just starting the game and we're gonna end up seeing Winston come in later, or if they're gonna be splitting or if it's only gonna be tasting Hill, I think the Falcons got the offense to do it, even against the state's defense, which at times this year has looked incredibly suspect.
According to Adam Schefter, Winston is not, uh, involved in the game plan whatsoever.
This week, Taysom Hill would have toe wet the bed for Winston to get an opportunity to come out and play, it would have to be appear benching for Winston to get game time.
When it comes from Schefter.
I have to believe it.
It's just the rule I have in life.
Uh, yeah, it's gonna be an interesting game.
I'm taking Atlanta as well because I look at Atlanta and think they have shot themselves in the foot this year.
If you look at the Dallas game and not understanding how to, you know, recover, uh, recover an onside kick if Todd Gurley doesn't fall into the end zone against Detroit.
Uh, and they blew another game where they just fell apart there.
They're actually sitting with six wins right now in three losses and not three and six in the reverse.
So they're a good team that have shot themselves in the foot deserving losses because they didn't finish the job as NFL football players and football team.
But they're a good team.
We talked about how one dimensional this offense was before with Drew Brees behind center.
I don't think Taysom Hill makes them better.
I've got Atlanta winning this game, Joe.
We'll go thio Well, eso about the Drew Brees thing.
I thought I saw somewhere that I think Breeze himself said that he does expect to come back this season.
So just take that with a grain of salt.
I don't know if you will, but anyway, that's and that's a good thought.
Right, right, right, Okay, So the whole table, I mean, if they make it to the playoffs, which they probably will, I think that he'll be able to make it back in for the play.
The longest bone to heal in your body and the human body is the ribs, and he's 11 of them that need to heal.
Yeah, but they're not like full broke their cracked ribs.
I've had I've had cracked ribs before when they at at 42 years old and go play football eight on one side and three on the guys.
This is not like this.
This is not 20 five year old Drew Brees.
If he plays in the playoffs, I envision a Kurt Warner situation where Drew Brees, his wife, is crying in the stands like they were during the Super Bowl against Pittsburgh when she was in tears because he, when he was just getting hammered and nailed, and he got up.
I think he said in the third quarter and just kind of looked at the sky and said, This is my last game.
I can't do this anymore.
All right? Anyway, Sorry.
So anyway so yeah, I think just like everybody else.
I am very curious to see how Taysom Hill plays.
Because over the off season, there was somebody that said that.
Lamar, What did he say? Lamar Jackson is a poor man's Taysom Hill, I believe, is what somebody said in an article.
So it's time to see the rich man's Lamar Jackson today play Taysom Hill.
Can't wait to see that happen.
Uh, no, I do have the Saints picked here, but I don't feel great about it.
I could absolutely see the Falcons coming out and just being better, because I mean, to be quite honest, what have we seen from Taysom Hill? Thio really say that he can be a quarterback for a full game.
I mean, we're gonna find out, and I think it's the same thing with Sean Payton.
He's kind of like, you know, we got to see it some. Eventually.
We got to see it happen.
Eventually, we got to see him for a full game and see if he can actually, you know, play well enough to win this game.
So, you know, I see what Sean Payton is doing.
But is this really the time that you want experiment? The Bucks are still right up there, man.
So it's, I don't know. It's kind of tough.
I'll still roll with the Saints, but I don't feel great about it, What at all.
I actually think this is the perfect time for them to experiment with this because yes, because they are.
So, yes, the Bucks are behind them.
But they're seven and two and own every tiebreaker with Tampa Bay, right? So they it's almost like having a game in hand right now.
We can experiment to see if states, um, can do it if it doesn't work.
We see Jamie's next week, Keith who you've got winning this game.
I got the Saints winning, but I'm not confident in it because the Falcons, you know, they've been competing.
Even their their last loss that they took.
They lost by one point to the Lions, but they've been putting up over 25 30 points.
They put up 40 against the Vikings, 25 against the Panthers, 34 against the Broncos.
Like I think, they're gonna have to score points.
And then I looked at The Saints is having to score points with them.
With Taysom, Hill were like, I'm not buying that.
Taysom Hill is, um, capable of being a starter in the NFL.
I know there's a lot of talk about, you know, the guy.
Someone compared him to Steve Young.
That's cool and all, but you gotta show me.
I think the Saints were playing him because if he fails and they and they go to Jamie's, it's a better optic than Jamie's failing and then going to taste them.
And they do know that, like this stretch could be, Ah, long stretch without Drew Brees, we could be talking to January until Drew Brees can even kind of practice.
So I think it's more of Ah, it's just ah plan to go with taste them and then have James as the fall back.
So I don't know.
I don't know what their offense is gonna look like with this guy like people are playing them in fantasy, a tight end and getting the quarterback points this week.
So I'm going with the Saints at home, I think.
Look out for Alvin Kamara.
This is gonna be a game where they need to just get the ball in the cameras hands and let him take over.
Because if not, the Falcons have so many weapons.
If they're getting into a shootout without Drew Brees to get the ball to where it needs to go, I don't I'm not so confident in the Saints.
I expect the state's offense would look like the Patriots offensive last three weeks of Taysom Hill running the football and Alvin Kamara running the football.
Because that's what we're seeing in New England right now, with the occasional throw to somebody, I think Taysom Hill will probably put up better numbers rushing the football than what Cam Newton has been, though.
I'm all right like he's running No, Cam Newton's running the ball seven times you, and so you know if he runs it eight times, he puts up better numbers anyways.
Next game doesn't seem not necessary for some reason.
Anyways, next game We got the Cincinnati Bengals A to six and one versus the two and seven Washington football team, another game that I wasn't sure what direction to go with.
I did end up going with Cincinnati in this game.
I think Washington with with the way the NFC East is wrapping up even at two and seven and still in it, I think that they are are are the ones gonna be looking on the outside? I have Borough winning this game, Uh, even without mixing.
But it's gonna be tight.
Keith will start with you.
Who you've got winning this game.
Don't bet on any of the NFC East teams.
Don't pick them.
We're just gonna disappoint you.
I know Alex Smith gets another week, a starter to practice and get going, and they're gonna be at home.
But I just I look at Joe.
Burrow is a guy like he's not trying to take too many l's, and if he sees a game on the schedule, that is a potential win.
And, uh, even without mixing, they're gonna throw the ball and try and get him, You know, away from that D line.
I don't know it's It's gonna be a tight game, but I'm taking the Bengals.
Alright, Lawrence, who you've got winning this game.
I got Washington winning.
I got I got this Washington defensive line being able to get pressure on brew.
And I think Alex Smith showed last week that he could still throw that football.
Um, I think I think he's gonna throw it fine against the Bengals.
And I think that Burrow is gonna have issues throwing the football.
He's gonna have to get rid of the ball, uh, quick and early and and settle for short yards, passes and hope for yards after catch.
I think Washington wins this game.
So this is one of those games for me that I could see going either way because, like you brought up Lawrence, um, the biggest strength for the Washington football team just so happens to be in contrast to the biggest weakness for the Cincinnati Bengals of Cincinnati Bengals.
Offensive line has been horrible and the Washington defensive line is terrifying, right? So if they can mediate that a little bit, if they can slow down the pressure on Joe Burrow, I do have the Bengals winning this game.
I know Alex Smith has played well.
Well, he had a great game last week, so we'll see if he can duplicate that.
Hopefully, that wasn't just a one time thing, But we'll see.
We'll definitely see.
I think that I like the way that Washington is playing.
I like what Ron Rivera is doing for that for that team.
Andi, just like you said Ray, There's still very much in it.
So ah, win today could absolutely boost them up and boost their chances to get into the get a home playoff game.
So I do have Cincinnati winning.
But you know, this is one of those who could really go either way.
All right, another stupid game here.
You've got the 35 and one Philadelphia Eagles taking on the six and three Cleveland Browns thistles.
A game that you think on paper.
This is a Cleveland game.
Just simple in and out.
But I don't think it's that simple.
Joe, I'll start with you.
Who you've got winning this game.
I mean, you said it pretty much right? Right on the head there.
Uh, the browns absolutely should win the thing, right, Because they have a great offensive line.
The strength for the Eagles is their defensive line.
They should be able to mediate that pressure.
But it's the Browns we're talking about.
You never know, and I know they've been better this season.
They're six and three.
They're the same as the Ravens.
Don't just don't pull out your pitchforks just yet, but I mean 10 and seven against the Texans, and I know it was The weather was crazy, but and they could have scored that touchdown at the end there.
But I just don't know if I have faith in the Browns to really beat a fairly ****ed off Eagles team.
I don't I mean, I don't know how they're gonna perform because it's the Eagles.
They've been terrible this season.
I will still roll with the Browns there, clearly the more talented team.
They should absolutely win this game with no problems.
But I just I don't know.
I don't know if there's a cause for pause for me for some reason.
But yes, I will go with the brands.
Lawrence will go to you next.
Man Joe said something and it just shocked me because the beginning of the season.
Who would have thought that in Week 11, we'd be saying the Browns and the Ravens had the exact same record, right? I mean, that's just wow.
I had the Browns being 18 8 beginning of the season, But in this game, I agree with you, Joe.
I mean, the Browns should win this game, but there are times when Carson Wentz just somehow becomes good and plays very, very well.
It's just weird.
I'm sorry, but most of the time you get the Carson went where you're like, OK, that's Carson Wentz.
And then other times he just shows up the play.
And then, on the flip side, the Brown sort of a complete opposite.
So I would not be surprised if the Browns come in flat and the Eagles play one of their best games of the year.
But I still got to go with the Browns, all right, and Keith, I told you, don't bet on the NFC least you can't pick the Eagles in this game and it's funny.
I laughed at what Lawrence said, because Carson Wentz, he's going to give you one good quarter.
He's gonna play like trash and one quarter he's gonna throw two or three touchdowns.
You could be like, Is this guy good? But with Myles Garrett not being there, I don't know.
The Eagles air Supposedly supposedly healthy now, like they have their offensive weapons back.
Alshon Jeffery, Jalen Reagor.
Uh, I can't pick the Eagles, though, because I think Nick Chubb his second week back.
Um, he's gonna be consistent.
He's not gonna give you one quarter.
He's going to give you all four quarters.
Kareem Hunt, I think, is better with Chub him playing like Batman Toe or playing Robin the Chubs Batman.
And listen Baker, Mayfield.
Just get the ball into these guys.
Hands don't do too much and you'll win it.
The Browns back to back games at home.
They had that weird game last week with the Texans.
Got rain delayed.
All they scored was 10 points and didn't cover by one point.
But I think the Browns win today.
I think the Eagles air in a weird place like Doug Peterson coming out and talking about how ****ed off he is, and they're still experimenting with Jalen hurts.
They don't have faith in went Give me the Browns.
I got the Browns today, too, and it's basically Keith nailed on the head.
Why, it's gonna be the Nick Chubb show today.
Hey, had his one game back, he slowly worked himself back into the game.
It's gonna be hand the ball off to him.
It's gonna get cream Hunt more involved in the game, both in the passing and the run game.
And I think that that's gonna open up the door for Jarvis Landry today, too, because the Eagles are gonna have to respect that Brown's run game now, Um, and I know there's no Myles Garrett.
I still think that Cleveland defense is good enough.
I'm gonna go with the Browns.
I'm not saying I'm going in confident with the Browns, but I think they should win this game.
Another intriguing game.
You got the four and five Lions taking on the three and seven Carolina Panthers, who have looked great as of late but can't seem to figure out a way toe win a game.
Uh, Keith, I'll give you first word on this who you've got winning this game.
The line is even, uh, nobody knows which way to go with this.
I don't know if if you could tell us, How's ESPN voting? Is it 50 50? It's 53 to 47 for Carolina.
I saw a teddy Bridgewater was banged up.
Obviously, McCaffrey's not going again.
This this looks like one of those games where it's gonna be down to the wire at the end.
Someone's gonna kick a field goal to win, and I think it'll be high scoring.
Um, DeAndre Swift is out for the lion's.
He just started like, um, he's just started to get going, as they're like, full time starter.
And now he's concussed.
I don't know how to take care, of course, and I don't know how to take care of what.
I'm gonna take the Panthers.
I'm gonna take the Panthers, even though I feel like they should just be losing and focusing on the draft.
They they're competitive.
They do play hard at times.
So I think a home game.
Um you know, Teddy is gonna be figuring out how to get it done.
And I love their three receivers in um D.
Moore, Robby Anderson and Curtis Samuel.
Like those three guys are all playmakers.
Figure out how to get them the ball.
The Panthers should be ableto win this like 33.
All right, Uh, Lawrence, we'll go to you next.
I'll make it short and sweet.
This is a very tough game toe pick.
But so I figured when it's a tough game, it's probably gonna come down to the last two minutes of the game.
And I will take Matt Stafford over Teddy Bridgewater.
Okay, Joe, you go on with Matthew Covert Stafford.
You're going with Teddy to gloves, Teddy to gloves.
I love the guy, so I don't know if Teddy's even gonna play.
Apparently, he's a game time decision.
I mean, you look at the injury report, and it's just I mean, both of these teams air pretty much decimated within trees.
Currently, the Panthers Air dealing with so many any the lions, they're dealing with so many, um, so that means that P.
J Walker, X F L M V.
P. Might be starting this game.
If Teddy is not good to go by game time, that'll be interesting to watch.
But I picked the Panthers on ESPN, but I think I'm going to switch my pick because if I had toe put faith in a quarterback.
It would definitely be Stafford like in that situation.
Like Lauren said, in a two minute situation, we've seen Stafford do it time and time again.
So I will actually change my pick to the Lions, believe it or not.
So I wish I could make this pick a 12 59 because I want to know what Teddy Bridgewater is playing or not.
So I'm gonna lean because of the questions.
I'm leaning to Detroit and I'm gonna pick Detroit.
And I'm going on a gamble that Teddy is not playing, Um, even though most of the time when they say a game time decision, the guy usually does play.
I know this will be the game that they don't play.
So congratulations Carolina took Detroit.
That means Teddy Bridgewater will be playing today on DNA, not go.
Next game is another intriguing game to six and three teams.
The Tennessee Titans in the Baltimore Ravens, both teams.
I would say Joe Fair are spiraling a little bit and both teams in need of a big comeback.
Joe, I'm gonna give you the go because this is the Ravens do they bounce back after that soaking wet rain affair in New England last week.
So I have been thinking about this game all week long as you're not probably not surprised.
I got to say I am very much surprised that 75% of people are picking the Ravens here.
I would think that, you know, it would be a little bit closer on the Titan side.
Listen, we're not stopping Derrick Henry.
It's plain and simple.
We don't have callus Campbell.
We don't have Brandon Williams, our two best offensive lineman on the team.
He's running for at least 150 I wouldn't be even surprised if he runs for 200.
We saw what Damian Harris did to us last week.
Once Brandon Williams went down, they were just attacking the A gap.
They didn't even get fancy.
They did not even get fancy.
They literally just said, We're just gonna run right up the middle and you can't do anything about it.
And the Patriots were right.
Bill Belichick was right.
We couldn't do anything about it.
So if the Titans air Smart, which has been one of their things lately, this season that, um, they apparently are trying to save Derrick Henry for the playoffs is something that I saw earlier this week.
So that could be a smoke screen.
Or that could be truth.
I'm not sure, but we're gonna find out today because this is the game to run up the middle with their Henry if you're going to do so.
To me, it's simple.
If the Ravens often shows up, we win.
Because the defense for the Titans has been suspect and their special teams is horrible.
We have the best special teams unit in the league, according to D v O A.
They have, I think, the third worst special teams unit in the league.
You know your guy Gostkowski, Ray.
He's been missing kicks.
The punters get getting his punch blocked, putting short.
So if we can take advantage on special teams, get short field for the offense and the offense can actually take advantage of that.
I do put faith into the Ravens, but if the offense doesn't show up and Derrick Henry runs wild all over us, the times we're gonna win this one very easily, so I do have the Ravens, but It's kind of like I'm not feeling confident too confident about it.
Alright, Keith, all rolled to you.
Now I got the Titans.
Um, I laugh when Lauren said, uh, all year because we all famously remember how shocked we were when the Titans went into Baltimore.
Same place they're playing today and punched the Ravens in the mouth.
I expect them to do the same.
Um, they know what to do to stop Lamar and and that offense.
When you talked about Kallis Campbell not being out or not being there, Williams being out like the interior d line like I just I think the Titans air hurt, too.
They're banged up to on defense, but I think they know what to do and what I'll say.
Last is the last we saw the Titans, uh, they played a bad second half of football against the Colts.
They're looking to get back out there and erase that.
And I think that they know what to do in Baltimore today, and they figure out how to beat the Ravens.
All right, Lawrence.
All right, First off, I want to apologize Ray for a comment earlier.
I think that was a bad comparison.
I think that the Taysom Hill, uh, Murray and Kamara's mawr aspect to the Jackson Dobbins thing I don't think they even compare it all to the, uh, what the Patriots did earlier against the Ravens.
Um, Joe, this all this all this whole entire game does not depend on Derrick Henry.
This entire game depends upon the offense.
As you say of the Ravens.
They need to find a way of moving this football consistently mhm and just keep the game in their aspect.
This Titan secondary is suspect.
So if if Lamar can run some good, uh, no huddle offense, keep keep the up tempo going and and throwing over the middle because that's where this Titans team is not good defensively right now.
If he can continue to do that like they did against the Colts a couple weeks back, I think they have a good shot at winning this game.
I'm gonna go with the Ravens, but in a very, very tight game.
Yeah, this is a gut game for me. This is an ****ytical.
This is because if I went on the ****ytical side, I'd probably lean towards Tennessee if I'm gonna be honest with you.
This is a gut game for me.
Um, it's very early to say this, but this is a little bit of Lamar Jackson legacy in this game, right? He's starting to squander a little bit.
He the he went from, you know, America's sweetheart last season.
He's, you know, the vicious headlines coming out the somewhat embarrassing loss to New England last week by just how poor the offense played.
And now you're playing the team that punched you in the mouth and basically derailed.
You're you know, you're really the class I think we're all waiting for was Lamar Jackson verse Patrick Mahomes in the In the A F C championship game.
He's lost the Patrick every time they've played.
He's the guy who can't win a big game.
We all know the narrative that surrounds Lamar Jackson and a loss today in dropping the six and four is on Lee going to decimate that locker room, even Mawr and decimate the confidence in him on.
I'm not saying a loss today could completely derail his season, but it could derail his season or or, you know, there's a lot of bad things that could happen and career wise where he goes from here.
This is a game that I think Lamar needs to step up and be a superstar, and I expect him to be a superstar today.
And I'm gonna take Baltimore to win this game.
Did we go to you two more things quickly? A.
Brown didn't have a great game against the Colts.
The Colts shut him down.
Don't look for him to bounce back.
He's not gonna have two games back to back like that.
Jimmy Smith is questionable with an ankle for the Ravens, and then the Ravens are favored minus six.
I don't I don't like that.
There's some high spreads.
Is it all right? This is, Ah, big game on the docket for me this week.
We got the Houston Texans versus the New England Patriots Last year, New England went into Houston the same place they're going today and got punched in the face by DeAndre Hopkins, who actually through a touchdown pass to DeShaun Watson.
It was the Onley touchdown pass.
That's the fun Gilmore gave up last season.
Um, this is a different Texans team and this is a different Patriots team.
Obviously, you're not walking in with Tom Brady, and this is a game that the Patriots need toe win to have any hope of keeping their season alive.
I've said they have to run the gauntlet and run the table.
They can maybe afford one more loss and go 10 and six to have a chance to win the playoffs.
And you still have the Rams and you still have the Cardinals coming up on the slate.
This is a must win game against a team.
Here's the benefit.
Houston's run defense is 32nd in the NFL.
The Patriots run offense is just kind of trailing behind Baltimore, who is one of the better run off for the best run offense in the league.
Damian Harris has been an absolute breath of fresh air for Patriot fans this season.
He's averaging 100 yards a game.
I think he's averaging like 4.
9 yards per carry and Sony Michelle is back today, which he's not gonna be a big part of this game plan, but he's going to be able to alleviate some of that pressure off of Damian Harris and not have to carry this and save him a little bit, especially when they need to start banging the ball in the fourth corner or the fourth quarter.
I'm not afraid of the Houston run game, and Stephon Gilmore is back.
That means that puts J.
Jackson a true number one into a number two corner position.
Uh, even though today I don't think it's gonna have anything to do with that.
I think it's gonna be all about matchups today.
I think we're gonna see J.
C. Jackson. I will. Fuller.
I think we're gonna see Stefan Gilmore on Randall Cobb.
Jonathan Jones on, uh, cooks, because Jones is our fastest receiver and you're gonna see Jason accordion Kenny Stills.
Uh, I'm gonna take So this is I'll tell you what, guys.
This is a tough game for me because, see if the Patriots win, they keep their playoff chances alive.
But that increases Miami's draft pick.
You know that gives them a better pick.
If the Patriots lose well, they're probably kill their playoff chances, but the Miami pick starts getting a little bit higher.
Not so close to that number one.
So I'm kind of in a win win, lose, lose today, no matter which way it goes.
But I'm gonna go with New England toe win this game.
They've been rolling.
Cam Newton came out this week and said, This offense hasn't peaked yet and he's still he's still expecting a peak to come.
I don't think this loss is gonna come against Houston, Keith.
You can start it off.
Who do you think's gonna win this game? I got the Patriots.
Um, I think Bill is gonna go in there and know exactly what to do against this Texas team.
They're gonna keep rolling after the win that they had last week against the Ravens at home, therefore, And five, they see the opportunity to get back to 500 then maybe get on the winning side the rest of the way out.
I picked him up in fantasy the last three weeks.
He's been doing work.
Cam Newton has the number one target.
Now, this this Patriots team has a chance to, you know, rewrite their season.
They got hit by Cove, it and some things didn't go right, and they struggled a little bit.
But all that's behind them.
I take the Patriots to keep rolling today.
All right, Joe, we'll go to you.
Give me the Pats as well.
Like I said, Bill Belichick, Patriots never count them out until they're dead in the water and they are not dead in the water.
Everybody was counting these Patriots out and then look what happened.
We were the first ones that had to see them still be in the game against us in that monsoon.
Bill Belichick is a great head coach, man.
It's plain and simple, like he's not gonna make stupid decisions, just like Harbaugh does on on a regular basis.
Um, you know him putting Cam Newton under center there and just pounding that ball all game was the best decision.
It was a monsoon last week.
So I think Bill Belichick is gonna find a way to be this Texans team like we were talking about them earlier today.
Men, there's just so many things going on with them.
Um, really, as long as you just just don't let to Shawn Watson kill you.
And I think the Patriots could win this game fairly handily.
So I wanna give you guys.
A little interesting tidbit because I just popped in my mind when Key talked about Cam Newton and Joe.
You did as well, because when we're teen up this game on D.
P and commentary this week, we were on Pff, just looking at, like, quarter like the quarterback rankings and their scores and stuff.
And this one really, really shocked me.
Did you know that Cam Newton? His Pff score is higher than Drew Brees, Derek Carr, Lamar Jackson, Ben Roethlisberger, Philip Rivers, Baker, Mayfield and to a tag of viola.
All teams that have records between nine and no and six and three.
And it just shocked me.
That camp sitting 13th in the league and all the rest of those guys they're sitting behind them in their in their, you know, Pff scores.
Cam gets a bad rap, man.
I always talk about how Cam Cam plays in a different set of rules for quarterbacks.
He's just a different kind of guy, even even some of the hits on him that he still takes.
I'm like they're treating Cam like he's a running back, like, if that was Tom Brady, he gets that flag, so yeah, I've seen that, too, where he gives himself up and still gets hit and they call nothing.
And I just think if that's Russell or that's Patrick, you know, I got to say Lamar gets a little bit of that treatment.
He gives himself up and he takes a hit, too.
And he plays with a little bit of a different rules.
If you watched Baltimore games, he gives himself up and and gets hit.
And they don't call any of the Patriot him twice while he was giving himself up and they didn't throw a flag on it.
Right? So it's you're starting to see that in the Lamar way, too.
But some of the other guys don't.
Lawrence will go to you, who you've got winning this game.
Oh, this is a game of time of possession.
Bill Belichick is going to just run the ball, keep this passing attack off the field, and they're just gonna They're gonna run the ball down the throats of the Houston Texans, and the strength of the Houston Texans falls right into the strength of the defense of of the Patriots.
I honestly, I I think I think New England is gonna win and not only win but win big.
I got him 24 or 34 to 24.
All right, so this next game is the Pittsburgh Steelers was the Jacksonville Jaguars nine and overs one and eight.
You think it should just be an absolute blowout, but Jacksonville just seems toe hang around games against good teams.
Uh, big band is playing today.
I heard. Right. So no, no.
Rudolph, uh, does this phenomenal defense just shut down Jacksonville completely? Is it close? I think I got to go.
I have a rule now, once.
You're not to know I have to take you until you lose.
You know, it's just a rule I have.
Even if I think you're gonna lose the game until you lose.
Like it's your your right toe win.
Eso I'm gonna take Pittsburgh.
I don't think they would have lost the Jacksonville anyways, but I think it's gonna be a tight game.
We'll start with you.
What do you think about this game? Well, there's a chance that Gardner Minshew comes back this game instead of letting so if Gardner Minshew was able to play, I give Jacksonville a chance.
Um, because I I think Gardner has that special ability to be ableto get out of pressure and get the ball out of his hands.
Whether that's good or bad, you know, that's up to use at times he looked like, you know, throwing interceptions when he does that, but at other times he makes fantastic plays, the deejay shark and and guys down the field.
The big question is, how are they going to use James Robinson in this game? That's that's my question, you know? Are they going to lean on him and and throw the ball to him and run him? Or are they going to use him and then use that for play action for your deeper shots down the field? Oh, I still got I'm with you. I got to go with Pittsburgh.
But I would expect Jacksonville to make this a game.
I'm surprised how much you hesitated there like you're actually considering Jacksonville.
Keith, go to you.
The Steelers, they're not gonna lose their first game to the Jaguars today, but I give the Jaguars props for what they did in Green Bay last week on the road.
Um and I think that they do have some scrappy guys on that team that play tough.
Um, I just don't think the Steelers lose, uh, today their first game.
And then also the to throw my cowboys in there.
They had their game where they played down to an opponent.
And I think that's all it takes for them to not do that the rest of the way.
So they're going to respect the Jaguars.
They're gonna go out there and try and punch them in the mouth.
And I think they win.
Okay, Joe, you have been overly critical of the Pittsburgh Steelers this season.
Um, we've all now accepted.
And whether you will or not that it's just you're bitter towards nine and no team or but last week, you bet.
With your stupid heart and not your head.
Are you gonna bet with your heart this week? You're gonna bet with your head who you taking to win this game? Who could have expected that the nine and oh, Steelers first loss of the season would be to the one in eight Jacksonville Jaguars? No, I'm just kidding. I'm going.
Listen, I actually do think this will be tight, and we see it time in and time again.
When the Steelers air 10 point favorites on the road, they were against the Dallas Cowboys.
What happens? They play down to their competition, right? At least that's what they say.
Um, I think they're gonna This is just what Mike Tomlin does.
He takes it easy against, you know, lower level teams.
But the thing with the Jags, if you do that with them, they can stick around.
We saw them do it against the Packers, and the Jacks could find a way.
Maybe if they if the Steelers let them stay in this game a little too much if they let him get a little too comfortable.
But now I'm taking the Steelers, man, I can't in my right mind take the Jacks whatsoever, all right? And that's everybody, right? Yeah.
Okay, so the next game is a game.
The Buffalo Bills may not be watching the Patriots game today, eggs, and it still might be thinking, Oh, that's still two games for the game.
Will be watching closely.
Is the Miami Dolphins going a mile high to facing three and six Denver Broncos? Uh, there's gonna be Ah, test for two of today, playing in that high altitude playing in Denver against the team that I think has just completely underachieved and just disappointed after their fans on ESPN.
Right now, I have Miami winning this game, but I there's a part of me that the first time somebody goes to Denver, it's like the first time you goto Heinz field of Gillette Stadium.
Right? There's a learning curve is a quarterback.
The ball sails a little bit more, The ball goes a little bit further.
You know what? It's trying to get that in.
I'm actually gonna lean towards Denver this time.
As much as I think Miami is the better team, I think they'll play the better game, and I think two is going to do fine and he'll adjust.
I just wonder how long it's gonna take him to adjust.
I'm gonna take the upset and go with Denver Joe. I'll go to you first.
I'm actually with you, Ray.
I have Denver winning for pretty much the exact same reason that you said, I think, to his first game at Mile High Stadium.
It could be trouble for him. We don't know.
I mean, and, you know, I think that rookies are always do for one of those games that they just come out and be a little flat.
I think this could be one of those games for to, uh um And I like Denver, man.
I am picking Denver. I know it doesn't make a lot of sense.
I mean, 93% of people are picking the Dolphins here, but pretty much for what you laid out rate.
You know, Mile High Stadium.
There's a difference in the air, and I think to a will be feeling that there.
So I have Denver.
All right. Lawrence will go to you.
Well, questionable on Drew lock.
But I And the big question for me is how is Bradley chub gonna play in this game? Because if he's able to get in there and get pressure onto a, then there's a chance, Especially with what you're talking about.
You know, the altitude and all that that this could be one of those upset games.
I still got to go with Miami, though I I think that Miami is playing so well over over this season.
I mean, I had them ate and ate.
I didn't think that they were gonna be a playoff team this year, but they improving me wrong.
Uh, I figured they were a year away.
And, like you said, you know, I thought Denver was gonna be much better than what they are right now.
Granted, injuries really hurt him.
But now I do want to throw into Lawrence that a lot of the top defenders on Miami.
Just when you're making this consideration are former Patriots defenders.
And I can tell you that those guys worst performances always came in Denver.
Yeah, but they've got experience in Denver now.
No. Even then even experienced.
It's their worst Kyle van noise.
Three worst performances with the Patriots was in Denver.
Okay, Well, if Drew Lock is able to play and it's healthy, he's got a fully healthy team out there. He's got Judy.
He's got Gordon.
He's got Lindsay.
He's got Handler.
You know, Fant might be playing this game as well.
This is a This is a game where I think Denver can win.
But I'm still going with Miami.
Keith, give you final word on this.
It's gonna be cold.
It's gonna be the first time to was playing in that altitude.
That's the only thing that I've got on Denver side.
I don't think I don't think the Broncos air good enough to beat this Dolphins defense.
I think the Dolphins win it ugly.
I think they're going to run the ball.
The kid, What's his name? Salve.
Inamed got going last week.
Gaskin is is still out, but I think they run the ball to what throws he makes.
The throw is that he has to make out there in the cold and the altitude.
Um, I think I think the Dolphins keep rolling and people got to start looking at that defense.
Their defense is beast, and they're young and they're fast.
And Brian Floors has them playing right.
And I don't think that they go into Mile High if if the if the If the Broncos had a better team.
Yeah, but I don't think they go in the mile high and and lose this game today.
All right, Uh, next game we got on the docket here is if we could go.
Really? Uh, this one is one who should discuss, but we should go really quick on it.
The Owen nine Jets 1st, 22 and seven chargers.
Herbert looking just to win a game.
Um, I'm taking the Chargers.
I I actually have now said the Jets were gonna go on 16 this season, and I think Adam Gaze is gonna make sure of it.
Um, I'm taking the chargers, Keith.
I'll give you first word on this game.
That spread is way too high.
You're putting a 9.
5 point spread on Justin Herbert and the Chargers like No.
The last time we saw the Jets, they competed with the Patriots.
Only lost by three.
I'm taking the charges, but I don't think they're 10 point favorites against the Jets.
Uh, taking the Chargers.
All right, Lawrence, the Jets make the playoffs this year.
Yes, because they're gonna They're gonna go to Goodell and say, You know what? This is not fair.
I think we need to switch the Giants and the Jets and put the Jets in the NFC East, and then they start winning games.
I get what you're saying, Keith, but I think that the Chargers were just better team all the way around defensively.
and offensively, I got the Chargers win in this game and they could win by 10.
All right, so, yes, so I wanna take you guys back real quick.
I'll keep this brief to the 2016 through 2017 Cleveland Browns, where they only won one game in two seasons, and that one game was against the Chargers.
If there's any candidate to keep the Jets from going winless, it is the Chargers.
But this isn't the Philip Rivers Chargers.
Yeah, but Justin Herbert has been having trouble winning as well.
So, I mean, and maybe it's just the Chargers thing, you know.
So I will go with the charges because I mean, come on.
Like, let's be honest here.
Justin Herbert has to beat the Jets, but I would not be surprised if the charges pull it Chargers and loose to the winless Jets.
Super super Super interesting game.
The two and seven Cowboys, the four and five Minnesota Vikings a game that it should be Minnesota's game.
Cook is playing correct.
Should be able to run the football on this Dallas defense, but as I always say with Minnesota.
They will win the game.
They're supposed to lose.
The games were supposed to win.
But I'm gonna go on the advice of our brother Keith, who told us not to bet on the NFC.
Least I'm gonna go with Minnesota.
And Keith, I'll give you first word from the panel.
This is your boys still wrapping this shirt proudly.
Can they beat Minnesota today? No, no, no.
They're coming off a bye week.
Everyone in Cowboys land looks for anything that they can possibly like.
Feed themselves to believe that the Cowboys could potentially win this game.
No, it's in Minnesota.
I'm I'm scared to see our defense versus Dalvin Cook and even Justin Jefferson and Adam feeling we lose Trey Von Digs.
He broke his foot.
The rookie was our best corner and actually one of our better players on defense.
His season's over.
Um, I don't know it.
And the spread is now growing.
The spread was like 567 now 7.
5 in favor of the Vikings.
The Vikings are coming off a big win against the Bears defense, which is a much better defense than the Cowboys take the Vikings all the way and the point.
All right, Joe, we'll go to you next.
Yeah, I think I'm inclined to go with the Vikings.
But I'm with Ray here, man, this could be one of those Vikings games, right? That they just come out and lose because they're the Vikings.
Why not? It's the Cowboys and the Vikings.
Um, yeah, the Cowboys air coming off a bye.
I mean, they're starting to get a little bit healthy.
It seems like the defense is starting to play a little bit better, but e don't know.
I don't like their shot against Dalvin cook.
If they actually run with Dalvin Cook, give me the Vikings.
But I could see the Cowboys kind of putting up a fight.
Andy Dalton is back this week as well. Correct.
Rights probably isn't even the right decision.
Lawrence will give you final word on this.
Keith, Is DeMarcus Lawrence gonna be playing this game? He's supposed to be playing.
He was out, but he practiced.
He's supposed to be good to go.
Randy Gregory might not be okay, but that that that's a big thing for me, because I think if tank Lawrence plays, then I think the defense has a shot at getting some pressure on Kirk Cousins, and if that happens, I think this could end up being one of those games where there's a lot of points and a lot of turnovers on both teams.
And I think that man, I think the lead could flip flop a lot in this game.
I think it's a coin flip.
I think everybody's gonna pick Minnesota.
I'm gonna go with the Cowboys, Alright, I love it.
Mike Zimmerman's not losing the Jerry Jones He used to be under Jerry Jones.
He's not losing the Jerry.
Well, I could promise you one thing I'm not watching the game on.
That's because Lawrence will be watching the national game today on Fox, and that is the Green Bay Packers.
There's the Indianapolis Colts, and I'm throwing, just like with Tennessee and Baltimore.
I'm throwing ****ytics and all the defensive stats and offensive stats out the window because Lawrence, unfortunately for your Indianapolis Colts, this is again a gut thing.
You're facing Aaron Rodgers off a bad performance, and one thing when Aaron Rodgers has a bad performance, he usually gets ****ed.
It doesn't matter who's in front of him.
He's got something to prove, and he wants to come out firing on all cylinders.
The Green Bay defense, to me is a suspect.
They could look fantastic.
They can look awful as much as I think Green Bay would like to get the run game going.
It's going to be difficult against this.
This Indianapolis team, which is the perfect set up for Davante Adams and Aaron Rodgers, who I think I wanna go out and prove something after they both played pretty **** poor last week.
I'm going with Green Bay on Lee because Green Bay doesn't have back to back bad performances.
But I'll give you the first shot at this Lawrence on the panel because it is your Indianapolis Colts.
Give us your breakdown for this game, All right, well, this is pretty simple.
Green Bay and Aaron Rodgers does so very well all season, except when they play top 10.
Defense is in Indianapolis has been the number one defense, basically every week except one week this year, and it's not just against the past, it's not just against the run.
It's not just against scoring there.
All the way across the board just about everything, and they're very good.
And the thing is, is they get pressure with only sending four guys.
Their defensive line gets pressure all the time.
If Matt ever flutes, a defensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts, decides to change things up and do something that Aaron Rodgers does, not expecting it all and send a blitz occasionally from here and there like what Tampa Bay did, Aaron Rodgers is gonna be completely, uh, confused.
He won't know what to expect because that's not on film this year, and the Colts have the guys to do that.
I think the Colts win this game Onley because I think the defense has the personnel to do things differently in this game than they showed on film all season long this year.
And Matty Bird Flu's is smart enough to do that.
So I think I think the Colts win this game.
I got a I got a 24 17 game and just to just to defend Green Bay a little bit, he put up 37 points against the fifth best New Orleans Saints defense, so it hasn't been bad against all Top 10 defense's I will go to Keith.
Uh, next I got to go with the Packers.
I just think like I think, uh, race at it like, you know, Aaron Rodgers coming off a game against the Jaguars at home, where he didn't necessarily have his best game.
He's gonna be looking to erase that now.
The Colts defense is not an easy team to come into their house and do that against.
But I look at this being mawr of Philip Rivers vs Aaron Rodgers like, Well, Philip Rivers be the guy to make thes throws that he's got to make.
I gotta take the Packers.
They're seven and two.
I think they go to eight and two and figure out how to get a win. Today.
I will say I'm very surprised that it's so far apart in pics.
With 74% of people taking Green Bay, it's again, just again.
Think again, indicative of the disrespect. Indianapolis.
And if this was just this game, I would say Lawrence, people just feel like us.
You don't see back to back, but this is every week when Indianapolis has a game and I don't know at what point in time, people are gonna wake up and start respecting Indianapolis a little bit, Joe.
I'll give you final word of the date on this on everything, man.
Give you final word.
And I'll have to leave you guys with this because I got to get on out of here.
So I've been going back and forth, even right now when you guys were talking.
I'm like, Okay, I'm gonna go with the Packers.
Lawrence makes a good point.
I'm gonna go with the colts.
Know Keith made a good point. I'm gonna go with the Packers.
So it's just been like one of those games.
You know, I could see it going either way.
My one concern that I was thinking about as you guys were talking is that Lawrence? The Colts are pretty zone heavy, right? And I like Aaron Rodgers against zone.
That's one thing I will say.
I think that you have to be physical against the Packers.
To beat them, you have to have that power running game, which, in theory, the Colts have with Jonathan Taylor.
But I don't know, he hasn't been really performing that great.
Um, so this is a game.
I could see the Colts winning, but I will pick the Packers just cause I think Aaron Rodgers has that bounce back game.
Andi, I just don't know if the Colts will, uh, change their philosophy on defense.
To be quite honest, I'd like to make a counterpoint, if you don't mind.
There has been times this year like what they did against Tennessee, where the Indianapolis defense have disguised their coverages and when they disguised their coverage.
When when teams are do very well against disguising coverages against Aaron Rodgers, Aaron Rodgers makes mistakes and the Colts against Tennessee disguise their coverage is incredibly well where they'll line up looking like they're playing zone and then go to man or the complete opposite.
Most of the time, it looks like they're in zone coverage or looks like like they'll go to man and then drop in the zone.
And when that happens, quarterbacks end up throwing where they think is going to be an open spot on the field, and yet a guy just drops right in there and and picks it off.
So this is gonna be an interesting game.
This is gonna be a very very interesting game.
It's I don't see this as Aaron Rodgers versus Philip Rivers.
Maura's Matt LaFleur versus Matty Bird Flu's.
Sure fair enough.
Well, you got a piece out out of here.
So see you later.
And and, Lawrence, I I totally respect this called defense Number one in the league.
Can we like? But Green Bay is number nine.
So this is Aaron Rodgers verse Philip Rivers because Philip Rivers now has to be the top 10.
Defense is well, what I mean it zoo turn around and and and and say that it's it's you know it's not.
Philip Rivers hasn't performed this year.
The stats are showing that he hasn't performed the culture top 10 in passing yards in the NFL.
Yeah, what does that turn into? A lot of rushing touchdowns.
You gotta get those running backs going today against the Packers defense.
20th run offense for you gotta get going.
14 14th in points, verse 13 points today.
Sixth and past versus 10th and pass 11th and Rush versus 20th and Rush.
There's a there's a lot of things in that offense.
Yeah, you know what I mean you can throw 400 yards a game 500 yards a game if you're If you're not a top 10 in passing yards, you should be a top 10 points, not 14th.
Which something's not happening in the in the red zone.
Yeah, the first four games of the year, the Indianapolis Colts offense has looked pedestrian.
I mean badly pedestrian like bottom five team in the NFL well, and their 30th on third down conversions.
Yeah, and then the last four games, the Colts offenses looked much, much better.
And they've been slowly climbing back up those rankings.
Yeah, Michael Pittman, Junior and him.
Heinz And those guys were actually starting to come back and get healthy.
So that's that's nice to see.
Yeah, I think that my only counterpoint is to you with your Tennessee ****ogy, is that's great.
You confused Ryan Tannehill like it's not a comparison and quarterback play When you compare, though, when you compare Aaron Rodgers to Ryan Tannehill, it's like comparing right now Philip Rivers toe Blake Bortles.
You know what I mean? Like, it would be an awful comparison.
Is Blake Bortles or, uh, I was just I almost Blake Bortles 10 times the the quarterback Philip Rivers at his age, and the way he is right now is 50 times the quarterback of Blake Bortles.
You know, we'll have to see. I think it's gonna be tough.
I just listen, I said I didn't throw anything.
I didn't even look at the numbers.
Still, right now, I just It's I've learned my lessons.
I had the the Patriots at a time when they were the second best defense in the league, had to play Green Bay after a bad loss, and Aaron Rodgers came out and kick the crap out of them.
I completely respect everybody that is picking Green Bay, and I understand why they pick Green Bay.
I just have faith in the defense.
I just don't know why.
Indianapolis, on a week to week, though, is very disrespected.
And I mean, they're never They're always like a 70% against, no matter their plane.
Um, it's like everybody saw the Jacksonville game on Week one and never caught up.
That's exactly what it is.
I think this is another reason why the Colts this Colts game Colts Packers game was flexed in the game of the week was because of what happened in Tennessee and that the Colts right now are leading their division and that, you know, teams just don't realize they know fans and and everybody know, you know, there's there's things out there.
Oh, the Colts have a defense.
They don't realize how good this defense actually is because they don't see the games.
Unfortunately, I don't think it was flex because of Indianapolis.
No, it was just the match because of who they are and who they're, and and because their opponent is a guy that I think is the national game 13 of 16 weeks to divisional leaders going on it.
And I think that's what did it.
That's a good pick.
Alright, guys, that's it for now.
Make sure you come back at seven o'clock tonight where Lawrence and I will break down everything we saw today.
I'm gonna assume I'm gonna be by myself for the first little bit.
Or maybe the whole thing with the 4 25 game being Green Bay and in the two very slow teams where a lot of clock doesn't come off.
So I might be on my own breaking it down tonight.
Um, and also teamed up this Kansas City Vegas game.
You might seem, Lawrence, you might not.
Don't blame if he's not there.
Let him watch his team play football.
Make sure you go check out Keith.
And what next? Eight minutes to go check out.
How about him as he tees up the Dallas Cowboys today and we'll see you guys tonight.
Have a good one.