It’s time to stop the jokes.
The woebegone NFC East is suddenly providing must-watch drama down the stretch of the NFL season after big upsets by the Giants and Washington Football Team last week. Three NFC East teams are part of this week’s $100,000 Sunday NFL Super 6 contest run by FOX Bet.
For each game you have to pick a result for either team winning by the following margins: 1-3, 4-6, 7-9, 10-14, 15-21, 22+
Enter the NFL Sunday Challenge contest on the FOX Super 6 app for free and you can win this week’s $100,000 jackpot! Download now at foxsuper6.com!
Here is how I am handicapping the six games included this week:
Cowboys at Bengals (+3.5)
The Cowboys finally were going to get it together against the Cardinals (38-10 loss). Then against Washington (25-3 loss). Then when Andy Dalton returned and beat the Vikings (followed by a 41-16 loss to Washington). It might be time to admit it’s not going to happen this year. Just too many injuries, with third-string tackles playing on the offensive line.
Except this is the week it turns around when Dalton shines in his return to Cincinnati! It’s a sucker’s mindset, but the Bengals have scored two offensive touchdowns in quarterback Brandon Allen’s two starts.
Pick: Cowboys by 4-6.
Cardinals at Giants (+2.5)
If Daniel Jones returns from a hamstring injury as expected, it will be the second matchup in as many seasons between the top two quarterbacks drafted in 2019. Round One went to Kyler Murray, who is facing his own injury questions as he is averaging 59.9 fewer passing yards and 46.8 fewer rushing yards per game during a three-game losing streak than he was during the first nine games.
The Giants are on their first four-game winning streak since 2016 behind their most productive rushing attack in a decade and the NFL’s No. 4-ranked rushing defense.
Pick: Giants by 1-3.
Vikings at Buccaneers (-6.5)
Tom Brady has never lost three in a row and had a bye week to stew after the last two losses. As is always the case with Brady, his struggles come against defenses that disrupt the pocket without blitzing. That’s not the Vikings. The Buccaneers have a legitimate shot to close on a four-game winning streak and claim the No. 5 seed in the NFC — and the gift of a first-round playoff game against the NFC East winner.
The Vikings are flirting with overtaxing Dalvin Cook after 38 touches last week. And Cook faces the top rushing defense this week. If Kirk Cousins has to win a shootout, it’s not going to work.
Pick: Buccaneers by 10-14
Chiefs at Dolphins (+7)
The Dolphins’ defense disguises looks and creates takeaways (20), playing the NFL’s best cornerback tandem of Xavien Howard (eight interceptions) and Byron Jones. That formula offers a chance of slowing down Patrick Mahomes, who has only thrown two interceptions and should reclaim MVP honors.
But if Mahomes plays it smart and takes the underneath passes instead of forcing deep throws to Tyreek Hill then the Chiefs will score in the high 20s. Can the Dolphins keep up as they look for their first 9-4 start since 2001? Tua Tagovailoa has shown a knack for distributing the ball to all his targets, but the Dolphins are missing a game-breaker.
Pick: Chiefs by 4-6.
Titans at Jaguars (+7.5)
The Jaguars are a tough out. Sure, they’ve lost 11 in a row, but the last two – when “tanking” should be at its highest – are by five total points against the playoff-contending Browns and Vikings. After committing three turnovers, Mike Glennon remains the starter over Gardner Minshew. Whoever plays quarterback should just hand off to James Robinson, who went from undrafted to Offensive Rookie of the Year candidate – but is not the best running back in this game.
Derrick Henry should have a monster day against the NFL’s third-worst rushing defense. And that’s enough for the hard-to-predict Titans – lose to the Bengals and squeak past the Bears, but beat the Ravens and rout the Colts? – to prevail.
Pick: Titans by 4-6.
Saints at Eagles (+7)
Somehow, for the second time in four career starts at quarterback, Taysom Hill is the more experienced of the two quarterbacks. The Eagles benched Carson Wentz for rookie Jalen Hurts with their season on the line.
The biggest difference? The Saints have a consistent offensive line and playmakers Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara. The Eagles have neither. The Saints also have the better defense, allowing 8.8 points per game over the last five as they look to secure the top seed in the NFC.
Pick: Saints by 15-21.
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