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NFL Week 6 previews, predictions

Cardinals at Steelers, 1

Line/OU: Cardinals by 3½; 45

Steelers have won four of past five meetings, including 2009 Super Bowl win in Tampa. Cardinals' plus-100 point differential is greatest through five games since 2007 Patriots. They lead NFL in points (190) and TDs (24), and 4.96 yards per carry tops league. Steelers 23-5-1 at Heinz Field against NFC. Steelers have 16 sacks through five weeks; had 33 total in 2014. Pittsburgh WR Martavis Bryant should make season debut after missing first four games due to suspension and last week with knee injury.

Jones: Cardinals 27 Steelers 13 Readers: Cardinals 83.1 percent

Dolphins at Titans, 1

Line/OU: Titans by 1½; 43½

Dolphins interim head coach Dan Campbell makes coaching debut. Miami doesn't have a rushing TD this season, one of two teams (Jaguars) without one. Titans rookie Marcus Mariota has two or more TD passes in three of four starts. LB Derrick Morgan has 4½ sacks this season. DT Jurrell Casey has 3½ sacks.

Jones: Dolphins 24 Titans 16 Readers: Dolphins 54.9 percent

Bears at Lions, 1

Line/OU: Lions by 3; 44

Lions have won four straight against Bears. Chicago won consecutive games on go-ahead scores in final minute of regulation for first time since 1962. Bears' Jay Cutler threw two TDs in final few minutes of last week's win at Kansas City after trailing 17-3. TE Martellus Bennett has NFL-high 118 receptions since 2014. WR Alshon Jeffrey (hamstring) might play for first time since Week 1. RB Matt Forte has 609 yards from scrimmage, second in NFL, and has scored 10 TDs in six games against Detroit. Lions are only winless team for second straight week

Jones: Lions 16 Bears 14 Readers: Bears 52.1 percent

Chiefs at Vikings, 1

Line/OU: Vikings by 3½; 43

Chiefs' Alex Smith has been sacked 21 times, second-most in NFL. Vikings have won five straight at temporary outdoor home, TCF Bank Stadium. They're sixth in NFL with average of 18.3 points allowed per game. Charcandrick West and Knile Davis expected to share carries for Chiefs in absence of Lorenzo Charles (torn ACL). Vikings WR Stefon Diggs might be good waiver wire grab against Chiefs defense that has surrendered NFL-most 13 passing TDs. Diggs had six catches for 87 yards in NFL debut at Denver against one of league's best defenses.

Jones: Vikings 23 Chiefs 14 Readers: Vikings 94.4 percent

Bengals at Bills, 1

Line/OU: Bengals by 3; 43

Bengals are one win short of matching best start to season in team history, set in 1975 and 1988. Andy Dalton's 115.6 passer rating is highest of any Bengals player in team history through five games. TE Tyler Eifert is tied for second in NFL with five touchdown catches. With Bills starting QB Tyrod Taylor's status uncertain because of sprained left knee, former FSU standout EJ Manuel might make first start since 23-17 loss at Houston on Sept. 28, 2014. WR Sammy Watkins set to return after missing two games with strained right calf.

Jones: Bills 20 Bengals 17 Readers: Bengals 91.5 percent

Broncos at Browns, 1

Line/OU: Broncos by 4; 42½

Broncos have won past 10 meetings against Browns. Broncos lead NFL in total defense and are first team in 17 years to post at least 14 takeaways and 22 sacks through five games. Peyton Manning has just six TD passes vs. seven interceptions this season. Broncos LB Demarcus Ware (back) was limited in practice this week. Browns' Josh McCown is first QB in NFL history with more than 450 yards passing, two TDs, rushing TD and no interceptions in same game. He has thrown for 1,154 yards in past three games. Browns rushing defense is a mess, allowing 149.4 yards per game.

Jones: Broncos 19 Browns 6 Readers: Broncos 83.1 percent

Texans at Jaguars, 1

Line/OU: Jaguars by 1½; 43½

Texans QB Brian Hoyer makes first start since season opener. WR DeAndre Hopkins, who leads NFL with 578 yards receiving, is looking for fourth consecutive 100-yard game. DE J.J. Watt needs one sack to pass Richard Dent for fourth most in a player's first five seasons. Watt has 11½ career sacks against Jacksonville, including six in two games against Blake Bortles. Bortles is first in franchise history with 10 or more TD passes in first five games of season. Jags expect to have more packages for two-time Pro Bowl TE Julius Thomas, who played sparingly in his season debut last week.

Jones: Texans 19 Jaguars 17 Readers: Texans 53.5 percent

Redskins at Jets, 1

Line/OU: Jets by 6½; 40½

Redskins looking for first road victory since Week 8 last season. They have five takeaways in past two games after just one in first three games. Kirk Cousins trying to become first Redskin to complete 30 or more passes in three games in one season. WR DeSean Jackson could return after sitting out since straining left hamstring in opener. Jets looking for first 4-1 start since 2010 team opened 5-1 and finished 11-5. Brandon Marshall has three straight games of 100 or more yards receiving, first Jets player to accomplish feat since Al Toon in 1988. DE Sheldon Richardson returns after serving four-game suspension for violating league's substance abuse policy.

Jones: Jets 21 Redskins 14 Readers: Jets 84.5 percent

Panthers at Seahawks, 4

Line/OU: Seahawks by 7; 41

Panthers have not started 5-0 since 2003 when they finished 11-5 and reached Super Bowl. After traveling to Seattle, Panthers play next three and four of next five at home. Panthers have rushed for at least 100 yards as team in 15 straight games, franchise record. All-Pro LB Luke Kuechly expected to return after missing three games due to concussion. Seahawks' Russell Wilson has been sacked 22 times, most in NFL. RB Marshawn Lynch expected to play after missing past two games with hamstring injury. LB Bobby Wagner game-time decision after suffering strained pectoral muscle last week.

Jones: Seahawks 23 Panthers 14 Readers: Seahawks 73.2 percent

Chargers at Packers, 4:25

Line/OU: Packers by 10½; 50½

Chargers' Phillip Rivers and Antonio Gates have connected on 74 TD passes, most in league history for quarterback-tight end tandem. LB Jerry Attaochu has nine QB hits in past three games. Packers have longest active home win streak, 12 games. James Jones tops NFL with seven receptions of 25-plus yards. Defense has gotten sack in franchise-record 40 straight regular-season games, longest current streak in league. LB Julius Peppers has nine sacks in past nine games.

Jones: Packers 38 Chargers 16 Readers: Packers 98.6 percent

Ravens at 49ers, 4:25

Line/OU: Ravens by 2; 43

Last-place Ravens 1-4 for first time. 49ers, also last in division, on four-game skid for worst start since 2010. Ravens have lost second-half leads in each defeat this season. 49ers WRs Anquan Boldin, Torrey Smith are former top targets of Ravens' Joe Flacco. 49ers TE Vernon Davis expected back after missing two games with knee injury.

Jones: Ravens 20 49ers 17 READERS: Ravens 64.8 percent

Patriots at Colts, 8:30

Line/OU: Patriots by 9; 54½

Patriots (11) and Colts (9) have won most division titles since realignment in 2002. New England has won six straight in rivalry. Pats have outscored Colts 189-73 in past four games while rushing for 772 yards and 15 TDs. Rob Gronkowski needs two TD catches to become fifth NFL tight end with at least 60. QB Tom Brady is 13-4 against Colts since making NFL starting debut vs. Indy on Sept. 30, 2001. Since 2012, Colts have NFL's best win percentage in one-possession games (22-4, .846). Gronkowski has 19 catches for 300 yards and six TDs in past four games vs. Colts.

Jones: Patriots 40 Colts 28 Readers: Patriots 77.5 percent

Giants at Eagles, 8:30 Monday

Line/OU: Eagles by 5; 49½

Giants QB Eli Manning will make his 173rd consecutive start, longest active streak in NFL. LB Uani' Unga leads club with 35 tackles and has two INTs. Eagles' Sam Bradford passed for 331 yards in only career start vs. Giants on Sept. 19, 2011, with Rams. Rookie LB Jordan Hicks has 25 tackles, sack, three fumble recoveries, one forced fumble and one INT in past four games. Jordan Matthews had eight catches for 105 yards and one TD in last meeting and seems to be developing rapport with Bradford.

Jones: Eagles 23 Giants 20 Readers: Eagles 53.5 percent

Game text from Times wires. Bye week: Bucs, Cowboys, Raiders, Rams

This season we've asked Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones and readers to forecast the NFL results. To make your picks, go to

NFL Week 6 previews, predictions 10/17/15 [Last modified: Saturday, October 17, 2015 6:29pm]
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