I’m not sure what rock bottom is in the NFL, but I think we saw at least six teams hit it in Week 6. The Dolphins lost to a team that hadn’t won in 399 days, the Browns went full Browns, the Broncos lost to a team that was being coached by a special teams coordinator and the Lions look like possibly the worst team in NFL history.
Also, the Giants set football back 70 years and Washington got destroyed on the day it decided to honor Sean Taylor. Note to Washington: If you’re going to retire someone’s uniform, you should notify your fans more than three days in advance and also maybe hold the ceremony during a game that you actually have a chance of winning.
I was going to list everything Washington got wrong about with this Taylor ceremony , but this guy did a much better job, so I’ll just let him do it.
Alright, I’ve spent way too much time talking about bad teams, so let’s get to the Week 7 picks before someone gets physically ill like I did on Sunday while watching the Texans offense.
Actually, before we get to the Week 7 picks, here’s a quick reminder that you can check out the weekly picks from every CBSSports.com NFL expert by clicking here. On a completely unrelated note, if you’re like me and you like signing up for random things on the internet, then I would highly suggest that you sign up for CBSSports.com’s NFL newsletter, which I’m actually in charge of.
If you want to subscribe, all you have to do is click here and enter your email address. Once you do that, you’ll start receiving a daily NFL email from me and I promise it will be all NFL content and won’t include any commentary on old episodes of “Gossip Girl.” I have a different newsletter for that.
Since I’m now running a newsletter, you might be thinking that I’ll be way too busy to podcast, but nope, I’m never too busy to podcast.
For the rest of the season, I’ll be joining Will Brinson and Ryan Wilson three days per week (Monday, Tuesday and Friday) on the Pick Six Podcast, which is our daily NFL podcast here at CBSSports.com. You can listen to Tuesday’s episode below. The reason you’re going to want to listen is because we spent nearly some serious time dissecting the insane finish of Monday’s game, which saw the Titans beat the Bills 34-31.
If you don’t have time to listen now, make sure to click here so you can subscribe and listen later. Once the podcast reaches 700 million subscribers, I will stop asking you guys to subscribe, I promise, so let’s get it there.
Alright, let’s get to the picks.
NFL Week 7 PicksDenver (3-3) at Cleveland (3-3)
Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET (Fox/NFL Network/Amazon)
I once read “The Canterbury Tales” in high school, which I’m only mentioning right now because up until three days ago, it was the longest thing I had ever read in my life. However, that honor now belongs to the Browns injury report.
I had to watch an episode of “Grey’s Anatomy” before reading that list just so I could identify all the body parts listed. The Browns were dealing with a bunch of injuries during Sunday’s loss to the Cardinals and they might actually be even worse this week. Browns coach Kevin Stefanski has already announced that Kareem Hunt won’t be playing and on top of that, there’s a chance that Nick Chubb (calf) will also miss the game.
If both guys are out, that means the Browns offense is basically down to a one-armed quarterback (Baker Mayfield) and a running back who you’ve never heard of, which isn’t a great combination. Also, based on that injury report, I’m not even 100% sure the Browns are going to have enough players to field a team. THERE ARE 20 PLAYERS LISTED. At the rate the Browns are going, they’re going to have to hold open tryouts at a local high school just to have enough players for Thursday’s game.
If both teams were completely healthy, I’d pick the Browns. However, both teams are not completely healthy.
The pick: Broncos 20-17 over Browns
Cincinnati (4-2) at Baltimore (5-1)
1 p.m. ET (CBS)
I can’t remember the last time the Bengals played in a somewhat important game this late in the season. Sure, it’s not actually that late in the season, but don’t tell that to Bengals fans. For the past five years, the Bengals have basically been eliminated from the playoffs by the time Week 7 rolled around, BUT NOT THIS YEAR. This year, the Bengals could end Week 7 in a TIE FOR FIRST PLACE in the AFC North if they can beat the Ravens.
The fact that the Bengals are good this season is something that no one saw coming. Just kidding, I saw it coming, and based on a quick search of the internet, it appears there are about four other people on Earth who also thought the Bengals would start the year 4-2.
The biggest surprise of the season for the Bengals so far has been their defense. If you watched the defense play last year, they were absolutely atrocious. Imagine watching Derrick Henry play football against a group of elementary school kids and you’ll have an idea of just how bad the Bengals defense was last year. They’re definitely better this year, but I won’t know how much better until I see them play against the Ravens and that’s because the Ravens have the one offense in the NFL that the Bengals can’t figure out. In the last three meetings between these two teams, the Ravens have gone 3-0 while averaging 38 points per game.
For the first time in forever, the Bengals actually match up pretty well with Baltimore. The Ravens have given up the third-most pass yards in the AFC this year and the Bengals have a quarterback who can take advantage of that. On the other side of the ball, the Ravens are averaging 155.2 yards per game on the ground, which is the fourth most in the NFL, but the Bengals should be able to slow them down. Cincinnati is one of just eight teams in the league this year surrendering fewer than 100 rushing yards per game.
I think what I’m trying to say here is that I’ve talked myself into picking the Bengals.
The pick: Bengals 27-24 over Ravens
Detroit (0-6) at L.A. Rams (5-1)
4:05 p.m. ET (Fox)
The most high-profile divorce in Los Angeles this year didn’t involve a celebrity or anyone on the “Real Housewives of Orange County,” it involved Jared Goff and the Rams. Unfortunately for Goff, the divorce isn’t working out so well on his end so far. Goff’s situation is basically the equivalent of me getting dumped by my wife, who then moves out to Los Angeles to marry a movie star while I end up living with 12 cats in a small condo in Detroit. I’m guessing you can figure out who Goff is in that scenario.
This game couldn’t have come at a worse time for Goff. Not only is his team 0-6, but I’m pretty sure his new head coach already wants to trade him away just like his old coach did.
If you skip to the 17-second mark in that clip, you see Dan Campbell take a long pause after being asked about Goff. This wasn’t just any pause, either, this was the type of pause you have to calm yourself down so you don’t say anything you’ll regret for the rest of time.
The thing that’s even worse for Goff is that he has to face Aaron Donald for the first time. Goff has less mobility than a hamster stuck in super glue. The Rams defensive line is going to eat him alive and although I want to say I don’t mean that literally, I can’t be sure.
Goff has never won a game without Sean McVay as his coach — he’s 0-13 — and I don’t see that changing this week. As for Matthew Stafford, I would say this is his Super Bowl, but then I’d have to pick him to lose, because he’s never won a playoff game. Stafford is going to get the last laugh on his old team, although the Lions are so bad this year that any laugh at their expense feels mean, so maybe he won’t laugh. Either way, I’m picking the Rams to roll to a big win.
The pick: Rams 41-17 over Lions
Indianapolis (2-4) at San Francisco (2-3)
8:20 p.m. ET (NBC)
The NFL could have flexed this game out of Sunday night, but they decided not to, which is why I should be in charge of the NFL. If it were up to me, I would let fans vote to flex one game per year and based on the reaction on Twitter, this is the game that everyone would flex.
I love this guy’s enthusiasm, but I hate the idea. I mean, have you ever seen the Bengals play in prime time? We definitely don’t need to move them to Sunday night. To be honest, I actually like that this didn’t get flexed and that’s because it’s one of the most intriguing games on the schedule.
We have two teams that both had high expectations going into the year, but now, both of them have losing records and I’m going to go ahead and say that the loser of this game isn’t going to make the playoffs.
The problem with picking this game is that I have no idea who the 49ers quarterback is going to be. I think it’s going to be Jimmy Garoppolo. If Garoppolo was as good at football as he is handsome, the 49ers would be undefeated this year, but sadly, that’s just not the case. However, I do think that Garoppolo is a better quarterback than Carson Wentz, although that might not matter, because the Colts offense doesn’t revolve around Wentz.
Over the past few weeks, Jonathan Taylor — not to be confused with my personal hero from 1994, Jonathan Taylor Thomas — has been the secret to the Colts success. Over the past three weeks, Taylor has been averaging 147 total yards per game and the Colts have gone 2-1 in those games (They would have gone 3-0 in those games if they had brought a healthy kicker to Baltimore). If Taylor goes off again, this feels like a Colts upset waiting to happen, but if the 49ers bottle him up, we might see a Sunday night blowout.
The prediction here: Taylor goes off and the Colts squeak by in an upset that will have 49ers fans calling for Garoppolo to be traded.
The pick: Colts 26-23 over 49ers
New Orleans (3-2) at Seattle (2-4)
Monday, 8:15 p.m. ET (ESPN)
It took six weeks, but I finally picked a Washington game correctly, which means we’re finally down to just one team this year that I haven’t been able to figure out: The New Orleans Saints.
We are seven weeks into the season and I still have yet to pick a Saints game correctly. I’m 0-5 picking their games this year and every week I get slightly more irritated by the fact that I can’t pick any of their games correctly. I blame the entire thing on Jameis Winston. Whenever I think he’s going to throw seven interceptions in a game, he throws seven touchdowns. When I think he’s going to throw five touchdowns, he throws seven interceptions. The only explanation that makes sense at this point is that he’s clearly mocking me.
The wrong picks are getting out of hand and I’m probably going to be ranting about it a lot until I actually get one right so you guys should actually be hoping that I eventually get one right.
In Week 1, I picked the Packers to beat the Saints, which made sense in my head because when a team quarterbacked by Aaron Rodgers is facing a team quarterbacked by Jameis Winston, I am taking Rodgers’ team 100% of the time. The Packers lost 38-3. In Week 2, I thought, “Wow, the Saints looked really good against the Packers, so I’m going to pick them to beat the Panthers this week.” The Saints did not win that week. As a matter of fact, they got beat so bad (26-7) that I forgot they beat the Packers in Week 1. In Week 3, the Saints were playing the Patriots and I didn’t think there was anyway they were going to be able to go into Foxborough and steal a game on the road, especially after losing by 19 points to THE PANTHERS. Once again, the Saints had the last laugh after beating the Patriots 28-13. In Week 4, I thought I had a lay-up: I picked the Saints to beat the Giants, who are horrible. The Saints were WINNING this game 21-10 with seven minutes left, but somehow managed to lose. I’m assuming it’s because I picked them to win. After this loss, I banned myself from ever visiting New Orleans. I don’t deserve to be there. In Week 5, I outsmarted myself. The Saints were playing Washington and although my gut said, “Go with New Orleans,” I never listen to my gut because if God wanted us to listen to our gut, he would have put our brain there. Maybe our brain should be there, because once again, I whiffed on the pick.In Week 6, I picked the bye to beat the Saints and as we all saw, New Orleans won again.
What I’m trying to say is that whatever I pick here, you should assume the opposite is going to happen. If I pick a low-scoring game, assume it’s going to be a shootout. If I say there’s no way Geno Smith can lead the Seahawks to a win, assume Seattle is going to win by 40.
The other wrench being thrown into this pick is that it’s a Seahawks prime-time game. Have you ever watched a Seahawks prime-time game? THEY’RE ALL CRAZY. I have never watched a Seahawks prime-time game that wasn’t crazy and the craziest thing that could possibly happen this week is for me to get a Saints pick right, at least that’s what I’m telling myself.
The pick: Saints 19-16 over Seahawks
NFL Week 7 picks: All the rest
Packers 31-20 over WashingtonChiefs 33-30 over TitansFalcons 24-17 over Dolphins Patriots 23-16 over JetsPanthers 22-19 over GiantsRaiders 30-23 over EaglesCardinals 31-16 over TexansBuccaneers 23-20 over Bears
BYES: Bills, Cowboys, Vikings, Steelers, Chargers, Jaguars
Best pick: Last week, I predicted that that Jaguars would end their 20-game losing streak by beating the Dolphins 23-20 in London and guess what happened? THE JAGUARS ENDED THEIR 20-GAME LOSING STREAK BY BEATING THE DOLPHINS 23-20 IN LONDON. My prediction for the game was so on point that I briefly contemplated retiring from making NFL predictions ever again.
I predicted the Jaguars to score 23 points because I think that’s how old the girl was that Urban Meyer was spotted with. Just kidding, I picked that number because the Dolphins are bad and I knew 23 points would beat them. Anyway, I won’t be retiring and that’s mostly because I’ve decided that I can’t retire until I finally pick a Saints game correctly, which hopefully happens at some point before January.
Worst pick: At 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, I was trying to bask in the awesomeness of my perfect Jaguars prediction, but let me tell you, there is no such thing as basking on Twitter because there’s always someone around to throw cold water in your face and that’s what this guy did.
I would say that picking the Chargers to beat the Ravens was the worst decision that anyone in the world has made this month except I know it’s not because someone OK’d this remake of “Home Alone.”
If I want to watch a bad Christmas movie, I’ll watch the Hallmark Channel or I’ll watch “Christmas with the Kranks.”
Finally, if you guys have ever wondered which teams I’m actually good at picking, here’s a quick look:
Teams I’m 6-0 picking this year: Texans, Jaguars, Buccaneers, Colts, 49ers (5-0)
Teams I’m 0-5 picking this year: Saints.
Straight up in Week 6: 10-4SU overall: 63-31 (63-26 picking games that didn’t involve the Saints)
Against the spread in Week 6: 7-7ATS overall: 46-45-3
IMPORTANT NOTE: Ryan Wilson is an absurd 61-30-3 against the spread this year and if you want to know which teams he’s picking to win in Week 7, then be sure to click here. I know what you’re thinking and yes, I have thought about copying his picks, but maybe he should be copying me because my straight-up picks are better. Suck it, Wilson.
Exact score predictions: 2Exact score, wrong winner: 2
You can find John Breech on Facebook or Twitter and if he’s not doing one of those things, he’s probably actually reading The Canterbury Tales since he only read the CliffsNotes version in high school.