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NFL Pro Football 2013 Week 5 Picks

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Fearless Rick's NFL Week 5 Picks - Early Games

Welcome to the very best in winning NFL and College Football picks.
Rick Gagliano | October 3-6, 2013

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

(Byes: Minnesota, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Washington)

Thursday, October 3

Buffalo Bills at Cleveland Browns (-4, 40 1/2), 8:25 pm - As stunning as the Bills' 23-20 victory over the Ravens was last week, Cleveland's 17-6 win over Cincinnati shocked plenty.

These may be two teams on the rise, with young QBs and a "can-do" attitude, both 2-2 and possibly thinking playoffs. Pitting them against each other makes this Thursday night game a good barometer going forward.

Cleveland's defense has been fantastic, allowing just 70 points thus far, most of those in a 31-27 win at Minnesota and a 23-10 loss opening weekend, but they are a group gaining much confidence and should keep Buffalo's banged-up offense in check.

Prediction: Browns 24 Bills 14


Sunday, October 6

New Orleans Saints at Chicago Bears (even, 48 1/2), 1:00 pm - The Bears got ripped by the Lions last week, 40-32, and their defense is not what it used to be, ranked 26th in points allowed, at 28.5 per game and that simply is not going to get it done against Drew Brees and the Saints.

New Orleans is 4-0, though three of their wins have been at home. Their lone road victory was a close call, 16-14, at Tampa Bay. Since the line has this game a toss-up, figure on Brees getting the job done late in a shoot-out.

The Bears have, incidentally, the third-highest point total in the league, at 31.8 per game, after the Broncos and Packers. This could go either way, but the visitors seem to be on a mission.

Prediction: Saints 34 Bears 31


New England Patriots at Cincinnati Bengals (even, 44 1/2), 1:00 pm - One could say that the Bengals are not a good road team, or, that they're only a good team when at home, because their 2-2 record includes two road losses and a pair of home wins.

As for the Patriots, nothing matters to them, they just win football games, now 4-0, after ripping Atlanta in the Georgia Dome, 30-23, in a game that really wasn't all that close.

While Tom Brady has the offense humming once again, the issue for the Bengals has been inconsistency, especially in the running game, averaging just 83.8 yards rushing per game.

Both teams are thinking playoffs and wish to make a statement here, but Tom Brady - at the top of his game - speaks loudest and pressure in squarely on the Bengals.

Prediction: Patriots 27 Bengals 20


Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (-7 1/2, 53 1/2), 1:00 pm - Highest O/U on the board this week and for good reason. The Packers are scoring 32.0 points per game, the Lions 30.5, but the Lions are 3-1 and tied with the Bears atop the NFC North, while the Packers had last week off and are just 1-2, their lone win coming at Lambeau Field.

The Packers need a win to keep things close in the division, and history is on their side, having beaten the Lions nine of the last ten times they've played, including the last four straight, but, five of the last six meetings have been decided by seven points or less, four of them by four points or less.

Weather is not likely to be a factor, so expect Matthew Stafford and Aaron Rodgers to light it up, with Detroit possibly getting an additional leg up in the division with an upset.

Prediction: Lions 37 Packers 34


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Seattle Seahawks (-2 1/2, 43 1/2) at Indianapolis Colts, 1:00 pm - Difficult to believe that the Seahawks are favored against the high-flying Colts, if only because they were being trampled in Houston before the Texans folded late in the game and also because this is Seattle's second straight road game.

The Colts have lost just once, a stunning, 24-20, upset by Miami in Indy. Since then, they've hammered San Francisco and Jacksonville, both on the road, by a combined score of 64-10.

While the Seahawks and Colts are nearly even offensively, the best-kept secret in the NFL may be the Indianapolis' defense, fourth in the league in points allowed at 12.8, though seattle is second, giving up, on average, 11.8. Sooner or later, the Seahawks are going to lose a game, and this sets up as that game.

Prediction: Colts 24 Seahawks 17


Baltimore Ravens at Miami Dolphins (-3, 43 1/2), 1:00 pm - After getting torn asunder by Drew Brees Monday night, the Dolphins must regroup quickly to hold of an angry bunch of Ravens who come to visit, marking their second straight road contest, having lost a 23-20 decision in Buffalo last Sunday, a game in which QB Joe Flacco tossed five picks.

Flacco's unlikely to have such a bad outing again, but the Miami defense will also probably fare better at home than they did on the road in New Orleans, where they were torn up to the tune of a 38-17 loss.

Still, the Ravens haven't looked all that ferocious this season and Miami's been playing pretty consistently, despite having already played three road games. Another tough week for Flacco and Co. as the Ravens fall to 0-3 away from home.

Prediction: Dolphins 27 Ravens 20


Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants (-1, 53), 1:00 pm - Who would have thought that this game would be 1-3 (Philly) vs. 0-4 (Giants)?

Statistically, these are the two worst defenses in the league, allowing 36.5 ppg (NY) and 34.5 (Eagles), so the question is, are the Giants ready for the Chip Kelly read option, or, have the Eagles suffered because they've faced too many strong offenses (Washington, San Diego, Kansas City, Denver)?

The answer probably lies somewhere in between, but the Giants seem incapable of doing anything right. They kept the KC game last week close through the first half, but were eventually blown out, 31-7. They just aren't getting it done and the Eagles will put loss #5 on them.

Prediction: Eagles 34 Giants 17


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Jacksonville Jaguars at St. Louis Rams (-12 1/2, 41 1/2), 1:00 pm - The highest spread on the board is the feature here, and, even though the Jaguars are 0-4 and have not covered yet, the Rams are just 1-3 and also haven't covered a spread this season.

These are two bad teams, but considering the outsize line, the Jags are the logical pick. The players might even be convinced they can actually beat the Rams, and they might.

Prediction: Rams 21 Jaguars 19


Kansas City Chiefs (-2 1/2, 38 1/2) at Tennessee Titans, 1:00 pm - Kind of a slap in the face to the 3-1 Titans being made underdogs at home, but the Chiefs are on a roll, having won all four of their games and keeping pace with the Broncos in the AFC West.

The Titans need a win to keep up with or take the lead in their division, depending on the outcome of the Colts-Seahawks game, so they will come well-prepared and they have home field, where they are 2-0. The fans will get behind Jake Locker and the staunch Titan defense, which seems to get better each week, last Sunday holding the Jets to a TD and a pair of field goals in a 38-13 rout.

KC has the best defense in the league (10.3 ppg), so expect this one to be close throughout, with OT a distinct possibility. A late missed fiedl goal by KC or a made one by Tennessee's Rob Bironas could be the difference.

Prediction: Titans 20 Chiefs 17

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2013, 2014, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.

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