Gregg Rosenthal went 9-5 on his predictions for Week 10 of the 2020 NFL season, bringing his total record to 92-53-1. How will he fare in Week 11? His picks are below.
THURSDAY, NOV. 19
Seattle Seahawks 30, Arizona Cardinals 26
Russell Wilson‘s slide in the MVP campaign polls started in Arizona, where Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph sent waves of pressure that the Seahawks haven’t found answers for since. With help from a running game that’s getting healthier for this rematch, Wilson is too good and the Seahawks have too much big-game experience to crater against a flawed, banged-up Arizona defense.
SUNDAY, NOV. 22
Cincinnati Bengals 24, Washington Football Team 21
After a hot start, Chase Young has one sack and one other QB hit in his last six games. Montez Sweat has been better, but the Washington pass rush has slowed down in recent weeks. If that trend continues, Joe Burrow should have enough time to outscore Alex Smith, who is playing the trusty vet version of Burrow’s style of play, and playing it well.
New Orleans Saints 28, Atlanta Falcons 27
This matchup is trouble annually for the Saints even when they are rolling, and the two-quarter sample size of Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill splitting work didn’t inspire confidence. I’m going to pick against my hunch about this streaking Falcons team, though. I’ll trust that Sean Payton will have a plan for his quarterbacks with a week to prepare, and look for the Saints’ defense to close this one out. There are a ton of lingering injury questions on both sides, however, so I’m more confident that the Falcons will keep this closer than expected than I am that the Saints actually win.
Pittsburgh Steelers 27, Jacksonville Jaguars 13
New England Patriots 31, Houston Texans 27
The Texans rank dead last in run defense and turnovers forced, which is a bad recipe against a diverse, peaking New England rushing attack led by Damien Harris. The Patriots didn’t turn the ball over and didn’t need to throw much during their two-game winning streak. They should be able to replicate that in this reunion with old pal Romeo Crennel.
Carolina Panthers 30, Detroit Lions 27
With Matthew Stafford and Teddy Bridgewater both facing injury questions, this score prediction could change before game time depending on status updates for the quarterbacks. If both suit up, these are remarkably similar teams with defenses that struggle to get off the field. I love the juice D’Andre Swift brings to the Lions’ offense, but I love the coaching advantage for Carolina even more.
Baltimore Ravens 28, Tennessee Titans 24
The Ravens suddenly can’t run up the middle or set the edge on defense, two bedrock traits to their 2019 identity. The Titans are well-constructed to take advantage of both weaknesses, but I like the Ravens to narrowly exorcise their playoff demons because Ryan Tannehill‘s pass protection is an even bigger problem.
Los Angeles Chargers 24, New York Jets 17
The Chargers aren’t the same without Joey Bosa, Austin Ekeler and Chris Harris Jr. The Jets might be better without Sam Darnold, which is a concern. The only opponent remaining on the Jets’ schedule that currently has a losing record is New England, which will host them in Week 17, so Sunday could be Gang Green’s best chance at a win for a while. Then again, Bosa returned to full participation in Wednesday’s practice …
Miami Dolphins 24, Denver Broncos 16
Indianapolis Colts 29, Green Bay Packers 26
I trust this Colts team if it can protect Philip Rivers. I don’t yet trust the Packers’ defense to rush the passer, as Za’Darius Smith, Kenny Clark and Preston Smith have been lesser versions of their 2019 selves so far. The health status of Green Bay’s starting cornerbacks closer to game time could lead me to flip this pick, but this is easily the toughest defense Aaron Rodgers has faced since falling to the Bucs.
Kansas City Chiefs 34, Las Vegas Raiders 23
An improved Raiders defense over the last three games mirrors a sluggish Raiders passing attack over the same stretch, which is not a promising trade-off this week. COVID-19 protocols for both teams complicate this pick, but the Chiefs look like the kind of defending champions who play their best when they need to. Kansas City needs to avoid getting swept by Las Vegas.
MONDAY, NOV. 23
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 26, Los Angeles Rams 21
This is a great Monday night game, but it could be more of a defensive showcase than you might expect, with the Rams’ excellent cornerbacks (hello, Darious Williams!) and Aaron Donald making life difficult on Tom Brady. The Bucs’ blitzkrieg style also doesn’t bode well for Jared Goff, so the superior running game may take the day. While I love me some Darrell Henderson, it’s Ronald Jones who has the better matchup.