NFL Nation: 2014 NFL Nation season predictions AFC

Buffalo Bills game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
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ESPN.com Buffalo Bills reporter Mike Rodak makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Chicago Bears

This will be EJ Manuel's first "real" test of the season and it won't be easy. The Bills went 2-6 on the road last season, with Manuel's only road win coming against Jacksonville. Given the offense's struggles in the preseason, this is a tall task. Prediction: Loss


Week 2: Miami Dolphins

The Bills beat the Dolphins twice last season -- with Thad Lewis starting at quarterback in each game -- and there is plenty of reason for optimism here. The Bills started strong at Ralph Wilson Stadium last season, nearly beating the New England Patriots and then knocking off the Carolina Panthers. With a pumped-up home crowd, they should pull this one out. Prediction: Win


Week 3: San Diego Chargers

Back-to-back home games in September can't hurt for Manuel. If he gets some momentum going against Miami, it should help against San Diego, which was a playoff team last season. I'm not convinced the Chargers are close to being a power in the AFC, making this a winnable game for Buffalo. Prediction: Win


Week 4: at Houston Texans

This is a classic toss-up game, a road contest against a team that was in the NFL's basement last year. The Texans will be better this season, but like the Bills, they have question marks at quarterback. Can Ryan Fitzpatrick out-duel Manuel? We'll say yes, but it will be close. Prediction: Loss


Week 5: at Detroit Lions

Jim Schwartz returns to Detroit to face his old team. The Bills' road schedule isn't overly difficult and I think they can come away with a few wins along the way. We'll chalk this one up as a victory. Prediction: Win


Week 6: New England Patriots

The Bills played the Patriots tough in last season's opener and also beat New England at home in 2011. It could happen again but it will take a strong effort from Manuel. By Week 6, is he ready to topple Tom Brady and the Patriots? Not likely. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: Minnesota Vikings

Will this be a Teddy Bridgewater vs. EJ Manuel matchup? Perhaps, if Matt Cassel struggles early for the Vikings. This is another winnable home game for the Bills, one in which their improved run defense will be tested against Adrian Peterson. We'll give the Bills their fourth win. Prediction: Win


Week 8: at New York Jets

Manuel had one of his worst games last season in the Meadowlands and was outdone by Geno Smith and the Jets. Whether Smith or Michael Vick is starting for the Jets by this point may not matter; the Jets' defense is tough and should contain the Bills on New York's home turf. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: Kansas City Chiefs

The Bills played the undefeated Chiefs tough around this time last season, with Jeff Tuel's goal-line interception the turning point in an otherwise well-played game. The Chiefs use a controlled offense, led by Alex Smith, and have a strong defense. That's a good combination to beat the Bills. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: at Miami Dolphins

The Bills should escape some of the South Florida heat as this game falls in November, but the Dolphins have a superior quarterback in Ryan Tannehill. If the Bills' defense stays strong like it did last season in Miami, this is a winnable road game. Prediction: Win


Week 12: New York Jets

The Bills handed the Jets one of their worst losses of last season at Ralph Wilson Stadium, a game in which Smith was benched for Matt Simms. Can Manuel have another strong day? It's tough to foresee this far into the season, but we'll say yes. Prediction: Win


Week 13: Cleveland Browns

Who will be the Browns' quarterback by Thanksgiving? Does it matter? This is the Bills' most winnable home game. If they can't pull this one out, yikes. The Browns would gladly take the "W" and the Bills' first-round draft pick next May. But for now, let's hold off. Prediction: Win


Week 14: at Denver Broncos

This begins a brutal December stretch that could ultimately doom the Bills' chances at the playoffs. Pulling out a win against Peyton Manning in Denver would be the Bills' biggest accomplishment in years. It won't happen. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: Green Bay Packers

From one future Hall of Fame quarterback to another. Aaron Rodgers will come in to Ralph Wilson Stadium and hand the Bills another loss, one that would probably put them out of playoff contention. Prediction: Loss


Week 16: at Oakland Raiders

Cross-country trips are never easy, and no matter what the Raiders' quarterback situation is by the end of the season, it may not matter. If the wheels are coming off the Bills' wagon, this will be a tough game to win. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: at New England Patriots

The Bills are in a tough spot with this one. If the Patriots are still battling for a playoff spot, they'll be playing tough and will be a hard team to beat at home. If the Patriots already have locked up the playoffs, then that would likely mean the Bills are out. Either way, not a good spot for the Bills to pull out a win. Prediction: Loss


Predicted Record: 7-9

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ESPN.com San Diego Chargers reporter Eric D. Williams makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals have a handful of new starters on defense. Two of Arizona's best players on that side of the ball definitely will not play in linebacker Daryl Washington (suspension) and defensive end Darnell Dockett (injury). San Diego appears to be catching the Cardinals at the right time. Prediction: Win


Week 2: Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks' 41-14 manhandling of San Diego a month ago during preseason play at CenturyLink Field was not a good showing for the Chargers. The starters for both teams will play in this one, and the game is at Qualcomm Stadium. However, the Seahawks will have 10 days of rest after the team's season opener against Green Bay, while the Chargers are playing on a short week after a Monday night game in Arizona. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: at Buffalo Bills

The Bills are improved, with one of the better defensive front sevens in the NFL. They have a nice 1-2 punch at running back in C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson and a human highlight film in receiver Sammy Watkins. But EJ Manuel remains inconsistent at quarterback. Prediction: Win


Week 4: Jacksonville Jaguars

This game could be the first start for rookie quarterback Blake Bortles if Chad Henne struggles early. The Chargers haven't lost to the Jaguars at Qualcomm, but Jacksonville's defense should be better with the addition of defensive ends Red Bryant and Chris Clemons. The Jaguars also get after the football defensively. Prediction: Win


Week 5: New York Jets

Will Michael Vick be the starting quarterback for the Jets instead of Geno Smith by Week 5? No matter the signal-caller, Rex Ryan will lean on the run game -- his Jets were one of 12 teams to rush for at least 2,000 yards in 2013. The Jets averaged just 15 points a game on the road in 2013. Prediction: Win


Week 6: at Oakland Raiders

The Chargers lost 27-17 on the road against an awful Oakland team last year. San Diego will be ready and bring more effort this time. However, the Raiders do have a bye before this game, so they will be rested. Prediction: Win


Week 7: Kansas City Chiefs

San Diego has not lost to Kansas City at Qualcomm Stadium since 2007. That streak should continue, although the Chargers can't rely on a Ryan Succop missed field goal to bail them out again. Prediction: Win


Week 8: at Denver Broncos

A nationally televised game against the best team in the AFC last year will be a good, midseason test of where this team stands. San Diego traditionally plays the Broncos tough in Denver -- the Chargers are 6-3 against the Broncos in Denver, including the playoffs, since 2006. Prediction: Loss


Week 9: at Miami Dolphins

The Chargers let one slip away at Miami last year. The Chargers haven't won a regular-season game in Miami since 1980. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: Oakland Raiders

San Diego players should be well-rested for the Raiders coming off of a bye week. Since 2003, the Chargers are 9-2 at Qualcomm Stadium against Oakland. Prediction: Win


Week 12: St. Louis Rams

The Rams have one of the most dominant defensive fronts in the NFL, but Shaun Hill does not instill fear in the hearts of NFL defenders. Prediction: Win


Week 13: at Baltimore Ravens

This game is the beginning of a brutal stretch of games to finish the season. San Diego has never defeated the Ravens in Baltimore. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: New England Patriots

New England runs the football, has an improved defense and one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game. And that Bill Belichick is a pretty good coach. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: Denver Broncos

This game is a late-season AFC West battle that the Chargers likely will need to win in order to stay in playoff contention. Expect San Diego to play with urgency in this one. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at San Francisco 49ers

You can't discount how San Diego's defense handled San Francisco's offense in the preseason matchup between these two teams. But Jim Harbaugh should have his team playing much better by December. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: at Kansas City Chiefs

For a second straight season, the Chargers finish against the Chiefs, but this time on the road. Since 2004, San Diego is 6-4 at Kansas City. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 10-6

Cleveland Browns game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
video
ESPN.com Cleveland Browns reporter Pat McManamon makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Pittsburgh Steelers

The league could not have given Mike Pettine a more difficult opening game. The Steelers will not start poorly after an 0-4 opening doomed their 2013 season, and the Browns open where they have not won since 2003. Prediction: Loss


Week 2: New Orleans Saints

It doesn't get any easier in Week 2, as a secondary that was suspect in the preseason lines up against Drew Brees. Too, a Browns offense that could do next to nothing gets an aggressive Rex Ryan defense. Coming home is no help. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens are too strong physically for this Browns team. Baltimore has a defense that can overpower the Browns and an offense that always seems to do enough to win. Prediction: Loss


Week 5: at Tennessee Titans

Smart money has the Browns switching to Johnny Manziel to play quarterback coming off the bye. Starting on the road should help him -- or so the theory goes. The Browns are not a great team, but this could be their first really winnable game. Prediction: Win


Week 6: Pittsburgh Steelers

Rob Chudzinski said the Browns had to stop acting like the AFC North's little brother; he was fired. Pittsburgh, more than any other team, treats the Browns like a kid brother. Especially if they are facing a rookie quarterback. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: at Jacksonville Jaguars

The low point of the season as the Browns lose to the lowly Jaguars for the second year in a row. The 1-5 start dooms fans again to watching a team playing the bulk of the season with little at stake. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: Oakland Raiders

The first half ends with a manageable game. The Raiders have quarterback issues, like the Browns, and they lack overall talent, like the Browns. In this case, the home field matters just enough. Prediction: Win


Week 9: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Two 4-12 teams from 2013 square off in a game that should mean little. The law of averages says the Browns have to win one game on the road. May as well be this one. Prediction: Win


Week 10: at Cincinnati Bengals

Cincinnati is a better team with a better quarterback and with one of the league's best receivers. The Browns seem to find a way to play Cincinnati close, but close won't be good enough here. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: Houston Texans

This is the "must-win" game for Pettine. If he can't beat the team that had the worst record in the league a year ago, a team that has quarterback issues, then he might be in Chudzinski-land when the season ends. Prediction: Win


Week 12: at Atlanta Falcons

Atlanta's struggles a year ago were an aberration, a result of an off year and injuries. The Falcons play at a different level than the Browns. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: at Buffalo Bills

Another must win for the Browns. Pettine used to coach in Buffalo, and the Bills took Sammy Watkins instead of the Browns. Losing this would have serious implications, though the way the Browns played in the preseason it feels like we're giving the Browns too many wins. Prediction: Win


Week 14: Indianapolis Colts

Andrew Luck is too good for the Browns. Enough said. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: Cincinnati Bengals

The Browns squeak one out here that they probably shouldn't. Every team wins one of these games, and the Browns seem to play well against the Bengals. They have defeated the Bengals in three of the past four seasons, which is quite a feat for this team. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at Carolina Panthers

Let's see, a Browns team playing out the string again facing a Panthers team with Cam Newton that might have playoff hopes riding on a win? Easy call. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: at Baltimore Ravens

Given the competitiveness of the three good teams in the AFC North, this game still should matter to Baltimore, which means it takes care of business. The results of this game mean the Browns finish with double-digit losses in each of the past seven seasons, though fans and media will point to the 4-4 finish as "hope for the future." Blech. Prediction: Loss


Predicted Record: 6-10

Houston Texans game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com Houston Texans reporter Tania Ganguli makes her game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Washington Redskins

Washington safety Brandon Meriweather will be suspended for this game, aiding the Texans' offense, which will still be figuring itself out at this point. Defensively, I like Houston's chances against Washington's offense, led by a quarterback still learning to play in the pocket. Prediction: Win


Week 2: at Oakland Raiders

The Texans will face ghosts of quarterbacks past this week, playing a team that has former Texans quarterback Matt Schaub and the younger brother of former Texans quarterback David Carr. The younger Carr, Derek, was declared the Raiders' starter in the preseason. He's still learning, though, and the Texans will prevail here to repeat last season's 2-0 start. Prediction: Win


Week 3: at New York Giants

After a 2-0 start that leads to positive vibes throughout NRG Park, the Texans stumble during their next road trip. This year, though, a more mentally tough team won't crumble after its first loss. Prediction: Loss


Week 4: Buffalo Bills

Texans coach Bill O'Brien's best friend, Bills head coach Doug Marrone, comes to town. So does DeAndre Hopkins' former teammate, Sammy Watkins. As dynamic as Watkins is, the Bills' quarterback situation will make things difficult on him. And the Texans' pass rush will make things difficult on his quarterback. Prediction: Win


Week 5: at Dallas Cowboys

These games are a rare intrastate treat. The Cowboys' defensive line struggled in the preseason, which will make things easier on the Texans' offense. Running back Arian Foster will have a nice day, provided he's still healthy. Prediction: Win


Week 6: Indianapolis Colts

A 4-1 start has visions of a worst-to-first transition dancing through Texans fans' collective heads. Now, though, the team hits a tough stretch. This game is a Thursday night game. The Indianapolis Colts are still the best team in the division and will show it in Houston. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: at Pittsburgh Steelers

Any discipline for running backs Le'Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount, stemming from the pair's marijuana arrest, will be long gone by now. This one will be within the Texans' grasp, but they won't get there. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: at Tennessee Titans

I do think Houston will field a better team than Tennessee, but this third road trip in four weeks will be tough on the Texans. They'll drop to 0-2 in the division and an even record here. Prediction: Loss


Week 9: Philadelphia Eagles

The Texans face the NFC East and this is that division's best team. The Eagles' defense will be terrific against the Texans, and despite their offensive issues, they'll take this one. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: at Cleveland Browns

There will be a subset of Texans fans who will feel conflicted today if Johnny Manziel has won the Browns' starting quarterback job by now. If he has, the Texans' defense will feast on him. Prediction: Win


Week 12: Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals are strong in a lot of places. Their defensive line is fantastic, highlighted by tackle Geno Atkins. Quarterback Andy Dalton is serviceable and helped immensely by the guy he throws to, A.J. Green. This is one of the Texans' toughest opponents this year. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: Tennessee Titans

This time the Texans will show that they are in fact a better team. They'll beat Tennessee to split with them and notch their first divisional win. Now comes the bulk of Houston's divisional schedule. Prediction: Win


Week 14: at Jacksonville Jaguars

Having come together nicely over the past two months, the Texans' offense shows hope for the future late in the season. They'll follow their first divisional win with their second, this one on the road. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at Indianapolis Colts

The divisional winning streak stops here. The Colts win this game and continue their reign. Prediction: Loss


Week 16: Baltimore Ravens

Finally we get to the Gary Kubiak revenge game. Kubiak and his sidekick, former Texans offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, return to Houston to face a team that fired them. While criticized for being predictable and boring in his play calling in Houston, Kubiak's offense is considered diverse in Baltimore. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: Jacksonville Jaguars

O'Brien will call on the Texans' sense of pride here. With a 7-8 record, the Texans aren't likely to be in playoff contention, but they'll want to finish the season well. While the Jaguars have improved all season, the Texans have, too. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 8-8

Indianapolis Colts game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
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ESPN.com Indianapolis Colts reporter Mike Wells makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Denver Broncos

The Colts are facing Peyton Manning at the wrong time. The Broncos were embarrassed in the Super Bowl last season and after the Colts beat Manning in Week 7. Expect the Broncos to score a lot of points in this one.
Prediction: Loss


Week 2: Philadelphia Eagles

The Colts could use suspended linebacker Robert Mathis and his 19.5 sacks against Chip Kelly's offense. It's the home opener for the Colts, and they aren't going to lose on national television in back-to-back weeks. Prediction: Win


Week 3: at Jacksonville Jaguars

Gus Bradley and the Jaguars are slowly heading in the right direction. The gap between the two teams is still too large, as Andrew Luck moves to 3-0 against the Jaguars in Jacksonville. Prediction: Win


Week 4: Tennessee Titans

The Colts went into the season wondering how they would play without Mathis during his four-game suspension. They wrap up the stretch by beating the Titans to go 3-1 without their defensive leader. Prediction: Win


Week 5: Baltimore Ravens

Mathis shows little sign of rust in his first game of the season, and the Colts feed off his energy to avenge their 2012 playoff loss to the Ravens.
Prediction: Win


Week 6: at Houston Texans

The Colts are the better team, but the short turnaround -- a Thursday night game -- and having to play on the road catches up with them, as they lose their first game in the AFC South. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: Cincinnati Bengals

The Colts are still stinging over the overturned fourth-down play that was a momentum shift last season in Cincinnati. Luck still hasn't dropped back-to-back games in the NFL. Prediction: Win


Week 8: at Pittsburgh Steelers

History is not on the Colts' side in playing at Pittsburgh. Indianapolis is 1-9 in its past 10 regular-season games there. They move to 1-10 after this one. Prediction: Loss


Week 9: at New York Giants

The Colts lost to a Manning earlier in the season. They're not going to lose to both Mannings in the same season. The defense takes advantage of Eli's poor accuracy to force several turnovers. Prediction: Win


Week 11: New England Patriots

Patriots coach Bill Belichick continues to own Luck, as the quarterback moves to 0-3 against New England in his young career. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: Jacksonville Jaguars

The Colts get their first look at the Jaguars' new franchise quarterback, Blake Bortles. They send the No. 3 pick in the draft back to Jacksonville with another loss. Prediction: Win


Week 13: Washington Redskins

Luck and Robert Griffin III, the top two picks in the 2012 draft, face off for the first time in their career. Luck shows once again why the Colts made the right decision in selecting him with the No. 1 pick. Prediction: Win


Week 14: at Cleveland Browns

Rob Chudzinski, the Colts' assistant to head coach Chuck Pagano, puts on his offensive hat and gives offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton some special plays to run against the team that fired him after only one season as head coach. Prediction: Win


Week 15: Houston Texans

The Colts avenge their early-season loss to the Texans by jumping on their AFC South counterparts early and never letting up. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at Dallas Cowboys

Luck is known for his fourth-quarter heroics, but Tony Romo is the one who leads Dallas from behind in the final quarter in this one. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: at Tennessee Titans

With weather conditions limiting the passing game, running back Trent Richardson ends the regular season with his best rushing game of the season, giving the Colts hope that he'll be able to produce in the playoffs. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 11-5

Kansas City Chiefs game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com Kansas City Chiefs reporter Adam Teicher makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Tennessee Titans

Although it's ridiculous to label any season opener a must win, this is probably as close as it gets. The Chiefs face a minefield over the next five games, so they need to take care of business in this one. Prediction: Win


Week 2: at Denver Broncos

The Chiefs haven't beaten the Broncos since Denver was quarterbacked by Tim Tebow. They are 0-4 against Peyton Manning's Broncos, and this doesn't look like the game in which they will bust through. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: at Miami Dolphins

It's not unreasonable to suggest the Chiefs' ability to stay in the playoff hunt hinges on this game. They could get buried if they lose to the Dolphins. Prediction: Win


Week 4: New England Patriots

This would be only the third game Tom Brady has played at Arrowhead Stadium. The joint will be jumping for this Monday night matchup. Prediction: Loss


Week 5: at San Francisco 49ers

A taxing stretch of schedule, a short week and travel to the West Coast are too much for the Chiefs to overcome. Alex Smith will play well but not well enough to beat his former team. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: at San Diego Chargers

The Chiefs are due for a win in San Diego. They haven't brought one home from Qualcomm Stadium since 2007 -- until now. Prediction: Win


Week 8: St. Louis Rams

The Chiefs have won all five of their games against the Rams since the Rams moved to St. Louis. They will continue to own the state of Missouri. Prediction: Win


Week 9: New York Jets

If the Chiefs' schedule has a flat stretch, the Jets are right in the middle of it. It's hard to see them having meaningful games down the stretch if they don't win this one -- but they will. Prediction: Win


Week 10: at Buffalo Bills

Buffalo's Ralph Wilson Stadium had been a haunted house for the Chiefs until they busted through with a victory there this past year. But they won't be able to sustain the momentum. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: Seattle Seahawks

The Chiefs will put up a strong fight in front of a raucous home crowd. But they won't have quite enough to beat the defending Super Bowl champions. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: at Oakland Raiders

Another tough West Coast assignment for the Chiefs, again on a short week. But this time they rise to the challenge. Prediction: Win


Week 13: Denver Broncos

The Broncos can't be looking forward to coming to Arrowhead for a Sunday night game. Again, the Chiefs will make things difficult for one of last year's Super Bowl participants, but they won't quite pull off the victory. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: at Arizona Cardinals

The Chiefs' playoff hopes take a fatal hit in the desert. This loss guarantees the Chiefs won't be making a repeat trip here for the Super Bowl. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: Oakland Raiders

The Chiefs take out their frustrations on the Raiders. In the process, they will get a second straight season sweep of their longtime rivals. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at Pittsburgh Steelers

Pittsburgh has been another place where the Chiefs have traditionally found it difficult to win. This game extends a losing streak that goes back to 1986. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: San Diego Chargers

The Chiefs haven't swept a season series from the Chargers since 2003. They get the job done this time against an opponent that will make the playoffs. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 8-8

New England Patriots game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
video
ESPN.com New England Patriots reporter Mike Reiss makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Miami Dolphins

The Patriots' ability to handle the heat and humidity will be critical, and conditioning has been a big part of training camp. The Dolphins have a new offensive coordinator in Bill Lazor, so there will be a bit of a new twist to preparations of a familiar foe. Prediction: Win


Week 2: at Minnesota Vikings

Tom Brady vs. Matt Cassel. A fun one from a Patriots quarterback perspective, as Cassel was the backup in New England from 2005-08. Prediction: Win


Week 3: Oakland Raiders

Don't see the Raiders being able to come into Gillette Stadium and beat the Patriots, even though I think Derek Carr is the better option at quarterback over Matt Schaub. That's a tough spot for the Raiders, who travel to London the next week. Prediction: Win


Week 4: at Kansas City Chiefs

Arrowhead Stadium is a tough place to win. When the schedule was initially released, I figured the Chiefs would get this one, but I'm reversing course now. Prediction: Win


Week 5: Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals got the Patriots last year in Cincinnati. I don't think they pull it off again, even though this is a good spot for them coming off the bye and with the Patriots on a short week. Prediction: Win


Week 6: at Buffalo Bills

Looks like the Bills still have big questions at quarterback. In that case, it's hard to invest in them in this game. Prediction: Win


Week 7: New York Jets

The Jets' defense could play New England tough, but I'm not betting against Darrelle Revis in this one. Prediction: Win


Week 8: Chicago Bears

With a long week to prepare, it's hard to pick against the Patriots. The Bears could be a tough matchup with two top-flight receivers, but the Patriots are always tough to beat at home. Prediction: Win


Week 9: Denver Broncos

Next year's game will be in Denver if the teams both finish in the same spot in the standings. Peyton Manning versus Tom Brady -- it never gets old. Prediction: Win (in overtime)


Week 11: at Indianapolis Colts

This is the iron part of the schedule. I think Andrew Luck finally breaks through against the Patriots, in part because the game is at Lucas Oil Stadium. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: Detroit Lions

Tough spot for the Lions, following up a road trip to Arizona and then playing the following Thursday on Thanksgiving. Prediction: Win


Week 13: at Green Bay Packers

Not easy to win at Lambeau Field. This could be one of the most entertaining games of the season. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: at San Diego Chargers

Asking a lot of the players in this tough, back-to-back road stretch. The Chargers are one of the more underrated teams in the NFL. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: Miami Dolphins

The Patriots always seem to fair well against the warm-weather Dolphins at home in December. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at New York Jets

There's always one game that surprises us and we never saw coming. Could this be the one? Prediction: Loss


Week 17: Buffalo Bills

Another season finale against the Bills, just like last year. Should be the same result. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 12-4

Pittsburgh Steelers game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com Pittsburgh Steelers reporter Scott Brown makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Cleveland Browns

A new-look team will be the same, old Browns when it comes to this AFC North rivalry. The Browns haven't defeated the Steelers in Pittsburgh since 2003 and they have never beaten Ben Roethlisberger, an Ohio native, at Heinz Field. It won't happen this year with quarterback so much of a question mark for the Browns. Prediction: win


Week 2: at Baltimore Ravens

A terrific early-season Thursday matchup sees the renewal of one of the nastiest rivalries in the NFL. Both teams are alike in a lot of ways, which only adds to their dislike for one another. They get a national stage to beat the stuffing out of one another, and I see another close game with the home-field advantage proving to be the difference. Prediction: loss


Week 3: at Carolina Panthers

The Panthers are vulnerable this year, and this is a good time for a team with question marks in the secondary to play an opponent that needs wide receivers to emerge. The Steelers steal one in Charlotte after getting a lot of rest to recover from their game against the Ravens. Prediction: win


Week 4: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers have made a ton of changes, the most significant one coming at head coach where Lovie Smith takes over for Greg Schiano, who was a disaster in the NFL. The Steelers come close to winning three of their first four games but the Buccaneers upset them at Heinz Field. Prediction: loss


Week 5: at Jacksonville Jaguars

I think the Jags have the right coach to lead their turnaround in Gus Bradley but they are still a year away from making a move in the AFC South. Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau isn't going to let journeyman quarterback Chad Henne or rookie Blake Bortles beat him, and the Steelers will pull away from the Jaguars in the second half. Prediction: win


Week 6: at Cleveland Browns

The Browns may have handed over the offense to Johnny Manziel by this time, and it would certainly add some sizzle to this game if he is indeed under center. The Steelers were expecting Johnny Football to start against them in the season opener. They will wait a couple of weeks to give Manziel their welcome to the NFL. Prediction: win


Week 7: Houston Texans

This will be a closer game than people think. J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney will make it tough for the Steelers to move the ball, and Ryan Fitzpatrick is a capable enough of a quarterback to beat the Steelers if they don't pressure him. Prediction: win


Week 8: Indianapolis Colts

Andrew Luck has established himself as an elite quarterback and I suspect he will be too much for the Steelers to handle, even though they play Luck and the Colts at Heinz Field. The three-game winning streak comes to an end when the Steelers finally run into a team that is anything but suspect at quarterback. Prediction: loss


Week 9: Baltimore Ravens

The biggest key for the Steelers in the prime-time rematch is not letting Joe Flacco summon some late-game heroics. Flacco beat the Steelers in three consecutive regular-season games at Heinz Field from 2010-12, delivering two of those wins with late touchdown drives. Prediction: win


Week 10: at New York Jets

Rex Ryan's bunch looks like the one team capable of challenging New England's supremacy in the AFC East. Geno Smith should be a much better quarterback than the Steelers beat last year at MetLife Stadium. I don't like this matchup for the Steelers with the Jets trying to keep pace with the Patriots in the AFC East. Prediction: loss


Week 11: at Tennessee Titans

The Steelers face former Pittsburgh offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt in their fifth and final prime-time game of the regular season. The Steelers have lost consecutive games to the Titans that they should have won. Whisenhunt should do well in Tennessee but the Titans have the look of a 7-9 or 6-10 team. Prediction: win


Week 13: New Orleans Saints

Drew Brees has fared well against the Steelers both times he has played them since joining the Saints -- and becoming one of the most prolific quarterbacks of his generation. It's hard to see the Steelers' secondary holding up under the barrage of passes Brees will throw at Heinz Field. Prediction: loss


Week 14: at Cincinnati Bengals

This game should have huge AFC North implications. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin is 5-2 at Paul Brown Stadium and I'm not a big fan of Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton. But the Bengals defense and home-field advantage should give them an all-important division win. Prediction: loss


Week 15: at Atlanta Falcons

Every season, it seems, a team goes from worst to first in its division, and Atlanta is a candidate to do that in 2014. Injuries wrecked the Falcons last season and this will be one of the Steelers' tougher road games. The offense carries the Steelers in a high-scoring win, and the Steelers keep themselves in the AFC North race. Prediction: win


Week 16: Kansas City Chiefs

This team takes a step back after emerging as one of the surprises of the 2013 season and making the playoffs. The Steelers will load up against running back Jamaal Charles and make quarterback Alex Smith beat them. They also will put up their share of points against the Chiefs defense. Prediction: win


Week 17: Cincinnati Bengals

Hello, again. The AFC rivals meet for the second time in four weeks and nothing less than the division title may be on the line. Just as in Cincinnati, home-field advantage is the difference and the Steelers close the regular season on a three-game winning streak. Prediction: win


Predicted record: 10-6

Cincinnati Bengals game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com Cincinnati Bengals reporter Coley Harvey makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Baltimore Ravens

Opening weekend hasn't been kind to the Bengals in recent years. Five of Cincinnati's past six Week 1 games have ended in losses, including their past two road openers at Baltimore. Along with those ominous first-game figures, the date Sept. 7 has been relevant throughout the franchise's history, too. The Bengals have never won on the date, going 0-4 all time. Combine all of that with the fact the Bengals are playing at a venue they've struggled at recently -- four straight losses at M&T Bank Stadium -- and a close Week 1 loss appears likely. Prediction: Loss


Week 2: Atlanta Falcons

Disappointed by their play at Baltimore, the Bengals will rally at home against a Falcons defense that's still finding some of its identity at all levels. Expect quarterback Andy Dalton to respond with a performance reminiscent of his 8-for-8 outing in the preseason home opener against the Jets. If he does and the offense can limit turnovers, the Bengals should come away with a big win. Prediction: Win


Week 3: Tennessee Titans

The Titans aren't as polished at quarterback as the Bengals and they enter the season still searching for help in certain special-teams areas. With Cincinnati back home and playing a franchise it has beaten three of the past four times, another pre-bye week victory should come. Prediction: Win


Week 5: at New England Patriots

The Bengals eked out a one-touchdown win over the Patriots in last year's close, defense-inspired contest in Cincinnati. This time around, expect New England, buoyed by the bright lights of a national stage and a raucous home crowd, to come away with a close win. In his regular-season debut, receiver Marvin Jones should make a difference for the Bengals' offense, but Tom Brady will prove just unbeatable enough. Since the Bengals were one of the few defenses that flat-out embarrassed Brady last year, snapping his 52-game touchdown streak in the 13-6 win, look for Brady to try hard to exact some revenge. Prediction: Loss


Week 6: Carolina Panthers

Back home against the Panthers, the Bengals will try to move beyond their .500 start and generate some post-bye momentum. If the Bengals are going to position themselves for a midseason run, this would be the week to do it. Carolina's numerous losses on offense this offseason won't make it quite as competitive as it was last season. Prediction: Win


Week 7: at Indianapolis Colts

Cincinnati has won the past two meetings with the Colts, and should take this one, too. Last December, the Bengals routed Indianapolis in a 42-28 game that was much more lopsided than the final score. Andrew Luck struggled with a fast, constantly blitzing defense. More of the same should come this year. With Dalton & Co. finally hitting an offensive stride in the middle of the season, don't be surprised if Cincinnati cracks 40 once again. Prediction: Win


Week 8: Baltimore Ravens

With the playoff race just starting to heat up by this time of year, the Bengals know that a win could put them somewhere in the upper reaches of the AFC North. This is only the second division game, but all division games matter. Prediction: Win


Week 9: Jacksonville Jaguars

Although the Jags made noted improvements in the offseason and Blake Bortles could make them a contender in the AFC South, this trip to Cincinnati won't go well for the upstarts. The Bengals should be rolling at this point in the year. Prediction: Win


Week 10: Cleveland Browns

Johnny Manziel could very well be the Browns' starter by this point, making this Thursday night game even more of a media spectacle than it already will be. The important midseason division game is one the Bengals have to win, and one that could seal Dalton's claim on being a more improved quarterback in big-game, pressure-packed scenarios. Entering this season, Dalton is 10-17 with a 24.2 QBR in division games, playoff games and Sunday, Monday and Thursday night games. He's 2-4 in prime time, specifically. Against a good Cleveland defense and the Browns' rookie quarterback, Dalton will shine. Prediction: Win


Week 11: at New Orleans Saints

This game begins a string of three straight road games for a Bengals team that could be banged-up by now. It will have been eight weeks since the off week, and the arduous nature of the schedule will begin catching up to Cincinnati against a good opponent that has an even better home-field advantage. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: at Houston Texans

With their five-game winning streak snapped the week before, the Bengals will be looking to rebound against a team that could still be looking for solid quarterback play. All Cincinnati has to hope for this week is the defense plays a good game and the offensive line keeps Dalton upright against an aggressive defensive line. That should happen. Prediction: Win


Week 13: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

With Carolina expected to be down and the Falcons going through their own potential struggles, Tampa Bay could make waves in one of the more wide-open divisions in the league. The additions of former Bengals Michael Johnson and Anthony Collins this offseason gives this game another intriguing storyline. Expect the home team to win a close game. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: Pittsburgh Steelers

In a later-than-usual home game against the division rivals, the Bengals hope to kick off a series of division wins. Three of their last four games are against AFC North foes, two against Pittsburgh. Being at home will make a difference. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at Cleveland Browns

Regardless of which quarterback is under center for the Browns, the Bengals could struggle this particular week. They've lost two of their past three games at Cleveland and are playing this one later than any of the other three. Mid-December in Northeast Ohio typically means snow and brutal cold. This could be one of those typical AFC North slugfests the Bengals have been good at in recent years. Still ... Prediction: Loss


Week 16: Denver Broncos

The biggest nondivision game of the season, a win in this Monday night game would put the Bengals at the forefront of the playoff-race conversation. But Peyton Manning's offense is too good and it has played too well on the big stage in recent seasons to walk away with a loss here. Dalton's mission will be to avoid forcing turnovers, but even that might not be enough. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: at Pittsburgh Steelers

Five of Cincinnati's past seven games in the Steel City have resulted in losses. There are few reasons to believe this contest won't go similarly. If the Bengals have clinched the division and the Steelers are still trying to get in the playoffs, Pittsburgh could win this one. If the teams are both trying to either close out playoff berths or a division championship, you'll see top-notch play on both sides. Banking on that being the case, Cincinnati wins to get to 10-6. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 10-6

video
ESPN.com Baltimore Ravens reporter Jamison Hensley makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Cincinnati Bengals

The Ravens are banged up in the secondary, but they tend to be at their best against Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton. Baltimore is 3-0 against Dalton at home, picking him off seven times. Prediction: Win


Week 2: Pittsburgh Steelers

On a short week, the benefit of playing an easier season-opening opponent (Cleveland Browns) is a definite edge for the Steelers. Plus, the Ravens haven't dominated Pittsburgh at M&T Bank Stadium, winning only two of the past four games played there. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: at Cleveland Browns

The Ravens have won 11 of their past 12 games against the Browns. They even get a few extra days to prepare for the Browns because they're coming off a Thursday night game. Prediction: Win


Week 4: Carolina Panthers

If this game is close, wide receiver Steve Smith will find a way to will the Ravens to a win over his former team. Is there any way Smith doesn't get 100 yards receiving in this game? Prediction: Win


Week 5: at Indianapolis Colts

The Ravens are vulnerable in the secondary, which is why they'll struggle against elite quarterbacks this year. And Andrew Luck is an elite quarterback, especially at home, where he is 13-3. Prediction: Loss


Week 6: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Ravens aren't going to lose to Josh McCown for a second straight year. The reason? Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil are going to get pressure against that Bucs offensive line. Prediction: Win


Week 7: Atlanta Falcons

In a game where the quarterbacks will headline, Matt Ryan will get the better of Joe Flacco. This looks like a bounce-back year for the Falcons. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: at Cincinnati Bengals

The Ravens historically don't play well in Paul Brown Stadium. Baltimore has lost four of its past five games in Cincinnati. The Ravens even lost there last season when Dalton threw three interceptions. Prediction: Loss


Week 9: at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Ravens haven't been swept by the Steelers since 2008. But this could be the season when Pittsburgh takes back the AFC North. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: Tennessee Titans

Joe Flacco is 11-1 at home in November with a 98.2 passer rating. Look for the Ravens to pick on former teammate Bernard Pollard in the passing game. Prediction: Win


Week 12: at New Orleans Saints

The Ravens return to the site of their Super Bowl championship, but this is far from a neutral field. This is the Ravens' most difficult road game of the season. The Saints are 20-4 at the Superdome over the past three seasons. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: San Diego Chargers

In his past four games against the Ravens, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers has averaged 295 yards passing, throwing seven touchdowns and two interceptions. His passer rating is 102.3. Only Peyton Manning has a better rating (131.2) against the Ravens since 2007. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: at Miami Dolphins

Flacco is 4-0 against Miami, which includes a divisional playoff win in January 2009. He has completed 61.9 percent of his passes against the Dolphins and has a 95 passer rating. Prediction: Win


Week 15: Jacksonville Jaguars

Since 2009, the Jaguars are tied with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Cleveland Browns for the worst record in December. The Jaguars have lost 16 of 22 games in that month. Prediction: Win


Week 16: at Houston Texans

New Ravens offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak will want to prove something to all the Texans fans who thought his attack was too predictable. Plus, could the Ravens be facing rookie quarterback Tom Savage at this point? Prediction: Win


Week 17: Cleveland Browns

The schedule is set up for the Ravens to finish strong, and history heavily favors the Ravens in this one. The Browns are one of two teams who haven't won a regular-season finale since 2010 (St. Louis is the other). Cleveland's average margin of defeat in the past four season-enders is 15.7 points. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 9-7

video
ESPN.com Jacksonville Jaguars reporter Michael DiRocco makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at Philadelphia Eagles

This is the first test for the rebuilt defensive line. The group better be in shape because it's tough to handle the Eagles' ridiculous offensive pace. More importantly, will the Jaguars have the center and right guard spots figured out by then? Prediction: Loss


Week 2: at Washington Redskins

Forget worrying about RG III. The player the Jaguars need to stop in this game is Jordan Reed. Tight ends pretty much had their way with the Jaguars in 2013 and Reed has the potential to be one of the league's better players at that spot. Prediction: Win


Week 3: Indianapolis Colts

In four games against the Jaguars, Andrew Luck has completed 60 percent of his passes for 1,079 yards and six TDs with three interceptions. He has thrown for fewer than 250 yards only once. This is where the improved pass rush needs to make its money. Prediction: Loss


Week 4: at San Diego Chargers

The Jaguars have not had much success on the West Coast. They are 2-9 all time in games played in the Pacific Time Zone, and haven't won a game in that time zone since a 13-6 victory over Oakland in 2004. Couple that with the Chargers being the third playoff team the Jaguars will play in the first four weeks. Prediction: Loss


Week 5: Pittsburgh Steelers

Might this be Big Ben versus Big Blake? The Jaguars are committed to Chad Henne as the starter, but if the team struggles in the first month and Blake Bortles continues to develop, this would be a logical point to insert Bortles into the starting lineup. Prediction: Loss


Week 6: at Tennessee Titans

Ken Whisenhunt helped Philip Rivers and Kurt Warner reclaim their mojo, but the problem in Tennessee is that Jake Locker never had any mojo to begin with. Even if Whisenhunt is able to work some magic with Locker, the one thing he can't do is keep him from getting hurt. Prediction: Win


Week 7: Cleveland Browns

The Browns do have a talented roster, but the Jaguars won this game in Cleveland last year and they're a better team in 2014. Maybe they'll be better at defending tight ends at this point, too. Prediction: Win


Week 8: Miami Dolphins

Quarterback Ryan Tannehill seems to be on a lot of "breakout players" lists. If that turns out to be the case, the Dolphins should be a playoff team. Prediction: Loss


Week 9: at Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals may be the most balanced team -- offensively and defensively -- the Jaguars will face this season. It'll be interesting to see if and how much Andy Dalton is energized by the club's confidence in him after the contract extension. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: Dallas Cowboys

It's hard to get a read on the Cowboys. They're no doubt loaded with talent on offense and Tony Romo is one of the league's top quarterbacks. And yet, somehow, things never seem to be quite in sync and there always seems to be some kind of distraction going on. But when that offense is rolling ... Prediction: Loss


Week 12: at Indianapolis Colts

Last season was the first since 2010 that the Jaguars didn't win a game in Indianapolis, but last year's loss came at the end of the season when the team was down nine starters or key players. The Jaguars have gone 3-1 after their bye the past four seasons. This also could be a good time for the Bortles era to begin. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: New York Giants

This is one of the swing games on the schedule, along with the Pittsburgh and Dallas games -- games the Jaguars could win if everything falls into place. It also depends on whether Eli Manning will be in the midst of leading the NFL in interceptions again. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: Houston Texans

It has been evident in the preseason that the Texans have more issues than just starting quarterback play. J.J. Watt is going to line up in different spots and it'll be interesting to watch his battles with left tackle Luke Joeckel, who was drafted in part to deal with the Texans defensive end for the next 10 years. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at Baltimore Ravens

This may be an important game in the wild-card playoff race -- for the Ravens. The Jaguars could get a chance to play spoiler. After winning in their first four trips to Baltimore, the Jaguars have lost their past five. Prediction: Loss


Week 16: Tennessee Titans

The Jaguars should have swept the Titans in 2013, but the roster was depleted by injuries at the end of the season. They should be able to get it done this season. Prediction: Win


Week 17: at Houston Texans

The Jaguars did sweep the Texans in 2013 and they'll be improved enough in 2014 to do it again, even if Bortles is on the field. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 6-10

Denver Broncos game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com Denver Broncos reporter Jeff Legwold makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Indianapolis Colts

The Broncos have opened at home, in prime time, the previous two seasons and scored 31 and 49 points, respectively. In last year's opener, quarterback Peyton Manning threw seven touchdown passes and this year's offense is primed for another big year. Prediction: Win


Week 2: Kansas City Chiefs

Personnel executives around the league said throughout the preseason the Chiefs have some unresolved issues in the secondary and that's not a good place to have unresolved issues against the Broncos. Manning threw six touchdowns in two meetings against the Chiefs in '13. Prediction: Win


Week 3: at Seattle Seahawks

For months the Broncos have listened to and, no matter what they've said publicly, heard every word of criticism they were too soft, too intimidated to handle the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII. A potential early-season classic. Prediction: Win


Week 5: Arizona Cardinals

The Broncos will be just a quarter of the way through the season and they will already be two games into their NFC West trek. The Cardinals were a 10-win team in '13 that didn't make the playoffs, but their defense will sorely miss the injured Darnell Dockett. Prediction: Win


Week 6: at New York Jets

The Broncos didn't like much of what happened the last time they played in MetLife Stadium and Rex Ryan will have some defensive surprises waiting. But if the Broncos beat their body clocks in this one -- kickoff is scheduled for 11 a.m. MT -- they'll get another win. Prediction: Win


Week 7: San Francisco 49ers

The Broncos haven't made it through a home schedule undefeated since an 8-0 run in 2005. The teams that will offer the biggest tests will be the teams that can pound the ball on offense and pressure Manning with a four-man rush. The 49ers can do both. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: San Diego Chargers

These two teams took decidedly different approaches in the offseason. The Broncos were active in the free-agency market, showering contracts on several new arrivals, whereas the Chargers took a far more measured approach. San Diego will see the new guys have made a difference. Prediction: Win


Week 9: at New England Patriots

Since the start of the 2006 season the Broncos have played five games in Gillette Stadium, including a playoff game to close out the 2011 season to go with the 2012 and 2013 regular seasons. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: at Oakland Raiders

In the past five meetings with the Raiders, the Broncos have scored 34, 37, 26, 37 and 38 points. There is no reason to believe the Broncos won't add another 30-something output to the pile. Prediction: Win


Week 11: at St. Louis Rams

From a personnel standpoint the Rams, with quarterback Sam Bradford out for the season, aren't quite ready for prime time all the time just yet. But at some point, an early Week 4 bye and a stretch of six road games in eight weeks will kick in for the Broncos and they will lose one they shouldn't. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: Miami Dolphins

It will be the Dolphins' first trip to Denver since 2008 -- Mike Shanahan's final season as coach. Miami, in a bit of a roster makeover, will find things have changed. Prediction: Win


Week 13: at Kansas City Chiefs

Last season the Broncos scored a single-season record 606 points and still couldn't run the table in their AFC West games, losing to the Chargers in Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Trouble spots this time around figure to be this game or the one in San Diego two weeks later. Prediction: Win


Week 14: Buffalo Bills

From all of the offensive struggles the Bills had in the preseason, things figure to be more than a little frayed by the time they get to this point in the season. The Broncos will be pointing toward postseason seeding. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at San Diego Chargers

No matter the time of the year, no matter the rosters on either side, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers has usually played well against the Broncos and put the Chargers in position to win the game. But this is the point of the schedule when the Broncos' new look on defense needs to look playoff ready.
Prediction: Win


Week 16: at Cincinnati Bengals

Finally, right here, the Broncos conclude the long, difficult trek through the road games that dominate the second half of their schedule. The Bengals, if still healthy on defense by this point, can rush the passer in the middle of the field and can create matchup problems on offense. Prediction: Loss


Week 17: Oakland Raiders

The Broncos nailed down home-field advantage with a win over the Raiders to close out the 2013 season. If all goes well for the Broncos, and a potential loss in New England would sting too badly, they should be in position to do that again in this one. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 12-4

Miami Dolphins game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
video
ESPN.com Miami Dolphins reporter James Walker makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: New England Patriots

The Patriots have dominated the AFC East division for a long time. New England will be at or near full strength in Week 1, which is bad news for Miami. Prediction: Loss


Week 2: at Buffalo Bills

Buffalo swept Miami last year and has been an awful matchup for the Dolphins in recent seasons. This will be the Bills' home opener and Miami's first road game. That is not a good combination. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: Kansas City Chiefs

At this point, Week 3 will be a must-win for Miami, which cannot fall to 0-3. Kansas City was a playoff team last season, but the Dolphins have enough talent to pull off an important win. Prediction: Win


Week 4: at Oakland Raiders

Although you never know how a team will respond going overseas, this should be a win for the Dolphins in London. Oakland is a struggling team that won't win many games this year. Prediction: Win


Week 6: Green Bay Packers

The Dolphins will receive a boost on defense with safety Reshad Jones and defensive end Dion Jordan coming off suspensions. But quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Packers' offense will be too much as Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin loses to his former team. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: at Chicago Bears

Winning in Soldier Field is never easy. The Dolphins lose a close one on the road. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: at Jacksonville Jaguars

This is a road game the Dolphins should win. Miami's defense can take advantage of former Dolphins draft bust Chad Henne or an inexperienced Blake Bortles at quarterback. Prediction: Win


Week 9: San Diego Chargers

West Coast teams usually struggle when making the long flight to Miami. The Dolphins pull this one out to keep things interesting in the second half of the season. Prediction: Win


Week 10: at Detroit Lions

This is one of those "swing games" that will make or break Miami's season. The Dolphins are capable of beating Detroit but fall short. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: Buffalo Bills

Despite being an awful matchup, the Dolphins can't afford to get swept by the Bills for the second year in a row. Miami wins a competitive game over Buffalo at home. Prediction: Win


Week 12: at Denver Broncos

Unless future Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning is injured, the Dolphins have little chance of winning this game. This will be a homecoming of sorts for Miami running back Knowshon Moreno, who played in Denver. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: at New York Jets

The Dolphins usually play well in New York. However, that streak of beating the Jets on the road comes to an end this season. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: Baltimore Ravens

Miami let the Ravens escape last season with a win in Sun Life Stadium. The Dolphins will be determined not to let it happen two years in a row. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at New England Patriots

The Patriots on the road in December is asking for disaster. New England usually is full-throttle by this time of year and rounding into playoff form. Prediction: Loss


Week 16: Minnesota Vikings

Miami finishes the regular season with two home games in December. The Vikings are mediocre and should be a winnable game late. Prediction: Win


Week 17: New York Jets

Similar to 2013, this game could have wild-card implications. The Jets and Dolphins usually split, so Miami gets the nod at home. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 8-8

New York Jets game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET

ESPN.com New York Jets reporter Rich Cimini makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: Oakland Raiders

The schedule-makers did the Jets a solid by matching them with the Raiders for the opener -- at home, no less. There's no way the Jets can lose to rookie Derek Carr and a rebuilding Oakland team. Prediction: Win


Week 2: at Green Bay Packers

This is a tough, tough spot for the Jets' depleted secondary. Their young DBs will have a hard time communicating at loud Lambeau Field, and Aaron Rodgers will tear them to shreds. Prediction: Loss


Week 3: Chicago Bears

The Brandon Marshall-Alshon Jeffery receiving tandem is scary for the Jets, but they can get pressure on Jay Cutler and control the game with their "Ground & Pound" rushing attack. It'll be old-school football for the Jets on the Monday night stage. Prediction: Win


Week 4: Detroit Lions

This could turn into a prolific pitch and catch between Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson, but this is where Rex Ryan's defensive acumen will come into play. He'll cook up an exotic scheme that will confuse the interception-prone Stafford. Prediction: Win


Week 5: at San Diego Chargers

Ryan likes San Diego -- he won a playoff game there in January 2010 -- but this trip to the West Coast won't go as well. It'll be too much travel and too much Philip Rivers, who will cool off the hot Jets. Prediction: Loss


Week 6: Denver Broncos

Oh, brother. In this case, the Manning brother at MetLife Stadium will be Peyton. Unless he's freaked out by Super Bowl nightmares from last February, Manning will have a field day with the Jets' secondary. Prediction: Loss


Week 7: at New England Patriots

The Jets get only three days of rest before facing Tom Brady & Co. on the road. There are easier things in the NFL than having to prepare for the Patriots on a short week. It's almost not fair. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: Buffalo Bills

This is a must-win game, and the Jets will respond to the challenge. With fans and media clamoring for Michael Vick, Geno Smith will play his best game to even the Jets' record at 4-4. Prediction: Win


Week 9: at Kansas City Chiefs

Call this the Buddy Bowl. Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg worked under Chiefs coach Andy Reid in Philadelphia and Chiefs defensive coordinator Bob Sutton served under Ryan with the Jets. In the end, the Chiefs' home-field advantage will be the difference. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: Pittsburgh Steelers

The Jets have dropped three straight to the Steelers, including the 2010 AFC Championship Game. It's not the Jets' favorite matchup, but this isn't your typical Pittsburgh team. It's time for some redemption. Prediction: Win


Week 12: at Buffalo Bills

Here's a guarantee: The Jets won't visit the local Dave & Buster's on the eve of the game, as they did last season on the trip to Buffalo. The Jets lost and Ryan was ripped for trying something outside the box. No matter, they'll lose again. Prediction: Loss


Week 13: Miami Dolphins

Expect the unexpected in this old rivalry. The Jets have dropped two straight at home to the Dolphins, failing to score a touchdown. Some things are hard to explain. Playing on Monday night, the Jets drop to 5-7, prompting Ryan to bench Smith in favor of Vick. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: at Minnesota Vikings

By now, Teddy Bridgewater will be starting for the Vikings. Ryan's defense is tough on rookies, so the Vick-led Jets will save their season with a rousing victory in the cold of Minnesota. Prediction: Win


Week 15: at Tennessee Titans

Chris Johnson circled this game on his calendar as soon as the schedule was released, making no attempt to hide his bitterness toward his former team. He'll run wild against an overmatched Tennessee defense. Prediction: Win


Week 16: New England Patriots

Ex-Jets star Darrelle Revis returns to MetLife Stadium, this time as a member of the Jets' top rival. He'll intercept Vick, but the Jets will get the last laugh, improving to 8-7. Prediction: Win


Week 17: at Miami Dolphins

In a repeat of last season, the Jets will close the season on an upbeat note, ending the Joe Philbin era in Miami. Unfortunately for them, a 9-7 record won't be good enough for the playoffs, marking the fourth straight year out of the postseason. Prediction: Win


Predicted Record: 9-7

Oakland Raiders game predictions

September, 2, 2014
Sep 2
8:00
AM ET
ESPN.com Oakland Raiders reporter Bill Williamson makes his game-by-game picks for the 2014 season.

Week 1: at New York Jets

The Raiders traditionally don't play well on the East Coast. Plus, Rex Ryan's team will be tough to score on. I see a low-scoring defeat. Prediction: Loss


Week 2: Houston Texans

I think the Raiders slug out a win here. Houston has a tough defense, but I think the Raiders defense comes up big and they win a similarly low-scoring game. Houston will be questioned for passing on quarterback Derek Carr. Prediction: Win


Week 3: at New England Patriots

This, on paper, is one of the Raiders' toughest tasks and I think it will play out that way. Tom Brady is just too tough to beat at home. Prediction: Loss


Week 4: Miami Dolphins

I think the Raiders are going to rise up to being the home team in London. The Dolphins have given the Raiders trouble, but I think the Raiders win in England. Prediction: Win


Week 6: San Diego Chargers

The Raiders have had success against the Chargers at home, and while the Chargers are improved, I like this matchup for the Raiders on both lines. Prediction: Win


Week 7: Arizona Cardinals

Raider Nation will want to see Carson Palmer fail in Oakland -- they've seen it plenty of times. But I think the Cardinals are too tough on defense for the Raiders in a critical midseason game. Prediction: Loss


Week 8: at Cleveland Browns

Maybe the Raiders will be facing Johnny Football or maybe not. Either way, I think the Browns will be a mess and the Raiders will win a rare game in the Eastern Time Zone. Prediction: Win


Week 9: at Seattle Seahawks

This is where the season toughens -- in a big way. An Oakland win in Seattle would be one of the upsets of the season. Don't see it. Prediction: Loss


Week 10: Denver Broncos

Here's another tough task. Peyton Manning will be just too much -- as usual. Prediction: Loss


Week 11: at San Diego Chargers

While I like the Oakland matchup against the Chargers, I think San Diego will find its stride and win a pivotal game. Prediction: Loss


Week 12: Kansas City Chiefs

I think the Chiefs will be up and down this season. This will be a down week. Prediction: Win


Week 13: at St. Louis Rams

The Rams are good and they may be playing for something at home. Tough spot for the Raiders. Prediction: Loss


Week 14: San Francisco 49ers

This will be a Super Bowl atmosphere for Raider Nation. But the 49ers will be hitting their stride in December. Prediction: Loss


Week 15: at Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs were down in Oakland and I think they will be up at home as they try to keep their wild-card hopes alive. Prediction: Loss


Week 16: Buffalo Bills

I'm not sure either team will be playing for much, but I think the Raiders give the home crowd a good showing to say goodbye to the season. Prediction: Win


Week 17: at Denver Broncos

Let's just say the Broncos will need to win this game. I don't like the Raiders' chances in that scenario. Prediction: Loss


Predicted Record: 6-10

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