Thursday, May 24, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Week 8 NFL capsules, predictions

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

Lions vs. Chiefs at London, 9:30 a.m.

Line/OU: Chiefs by 3½; 45 Lions fired offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and line coaches Jeremiah Washburn and Terry Heffernan on Monday. They're last in NFL in rushing offense. Matthew Stafford was sacked seven times last week by Minnesota. Chiefs had gone seven trips to red zone without TD before Charcandrick West's third-quarter TD run last week vs. Steelers. He ran for career-best 110 yards and now faces defense allowing 123 yard rushing per game. WR Jeremy Maclin (concussion) expected to play.

TOM Jones: Chiefs 20, Lions 14 Readers: Chiefs 80 percent

Bengals at Steelers, 1

Line/OU: Steelers by 1; 48½ Steelers swept series last season, have won past three vs. Bengals and eight of 10 for 56-34 overall lead. Bengals' Andy Dalton leads NFL with 116.1 passer rating. WR A.J. Green had big games against Steelers last season: 11 catches for 224 yards, then eight catches for 82 yards before sustaining concussion. DE and former Gator Carlos Dunlap is tied with for NFL lead with 6½ sacks. Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger returns after missing past four games with sprained knee. WR Antonio Brown's three punt returns for TDs have come against Bengals.

Jones: Bengals 31, Steelers 28 Readers: Bengals 60 percent

Giants at Saints, 1

Line/OU: Saints by 3; 49 Giants QB Eli Manning, a New Orleans native, seeks first win in Superdome, where he is 0-2 as pro. He has started 174 consecutive games, longest active streak in NFL. Saints aim to reach .500 for first time this season after 0-3 start. QB Drew Brees has won four of five starts vs. Giants. With Saints, he's 2-0 at home vs. Giants, passing for 350-plus yards in each game. Mark Ingram rushed for season-high 143 yards with TD last week.

Jones: Giants 26, Saints 20 Readers: Saints 66.7 percent

Cardinals at Browns, 1

Line/OU: Cardinals by 5½; 46½ Bengals' Carson Palmer is tied with Patriots' Tom Brady for league lead with 16 TD passes. Larry Fitzgerald has 46 catches for 622 yards and is tied for league lead with six TD receptions. Offense averaging league-best 6.78 yards per play and 38 plays of 20-plus yards. Browns QB Josh McCown missed practice time this week with shoulder injury but is expected to start. Offensive line has allowed 21 sacks in past five games. Pro Bowl CB Joe Haden expected to play after missing past two games with concussion.

Jones: Cardinals 33, Browns 14 Readers: Cardinals 97.8 percent

Chargers at Ravens, 1

Line/OU: Ravens by 3½; 50½ Chargers' Philip Rivers has 15 TD passes and seven INTs against Baltimore. He's working on streak of four straight 300-yard passing games and faces a porous, injury-riddled Ravens pass defense. Keenan Allen leads league with 62 receptions, most in NFL history over first seven games of season. Ravens' 1-6 start is worst in franchise history. Steve Smith leads team with 41 receptions and 588 yards receiving and needs 50 yards to pass Cris Carter for 10th all time with 13,900 yards.

Jones: Ravens 17, Chargers 10 Readers: Ravens 60 percent

Vikings at Bears, 1

Line/OU: Pick 'em; 42 Bears have won 13 of 14 home games against Minnesota and seven straight against Vikings at Soldier Field. Vikings' Teddy Bridgewater threw for 316 yards, one shy of career high, last week. Rookie WR Stefon Diggs aiming for third straight 100-yard game. Jay Cutler, with 136 TD passes for Chicago, needs one to tie Hall of Famer Sid Luckman's team record. Matt Forte is second among NFL RBs with 698 scrimmage yards.

Jones: Bears 19, Vikings 17 Readers: Vikings 84.4 percent

49ers at Rams, 1

Line/OU: Rams by 8; 39 49ers had five sacks last week — two apiece from former USF LB Aaron Lynch and LB Ahmad Brooks — and two interceptions. Anquan Boldin has 1,513 yards receiving vs. Rams, third-most by an opponent. Rams' Todd Gurley has rushed for 433 yards, averaging 144.3 in first three career starts. He's first rookie since 2005 with 125 or more rushing yards each of first three starts. WR Tavon Austin has 14 career TDs: seven receiving, four rushing, three punt returns.

Jones: Rams 24, 49ers 9 Readers: Rams 84.4 percent

Titans at Texans, 1

Line/OU: Texans by 4½; 43½ Titans QB Marcus Mariota (knee) is out, so Zach Mettenberger gets second straight starter. Kendall Wright had 132 y132 yards receiving and touchdown in last game against Houston. Texans' Brian Hoyer has 1,110 yards passing with 10 touchdowns and two interceptions. DeAndre Hopkins leads NFL with 776 yards receiving. Alfred Blue, who had 139 yards rushing and one TD in last start, could be good fantasy pickup with Arian Foster out for season.

Jones: Texans 13, Titans 12 Readers: Texans 66.7 percent

Jets at Raiders, 4

Line/OU: Jets by 3; 44 Ryan Fitzpatrick looks to become first QB to beat Raiders with four organizations, doing it already with Buffalo, Tennessee, Houston. Jets rank first in league against run, allowing 71.5 yards per game. CB Darrelle Revis leads league with six takeaways: three INTs and three forced fumbles. Raiders have gone 10 straight games without allowing 100-yard rusher. Amari Cooper first rookie since Mike Ditka in 1961 with three 100-yard receiving games in team's first six contests.

Jones: Jets 21, Raiders 17 Readers: Jets 62.2 percent

'Hawks at Cowboys, 4:25

Line/OU: Seahawks by 5; 41 Seahawks are NFL-best 20-6 heading into bye. They have franchise-record 18 straight games of at least 100 yards rushing. Cowboys QB Matt Cassel is 2-0 as starter against Seattle, one each with New England and Kansas City. RB Darren McFadden makes first start for Dallas after rushing for 152 yards on 29 carries against Giants. WR Dez Bryant (broken foot) likely to return today after missing five games. Cowboys 0-4 without Bryant and QB Tony Romo, who will miss at least three more games with broken left collarbone.

Jones: Seahawks 24, Cowboys 13 Readers: Seahawks 77.8 percent

Packers at Broncos, 8:30

Line/OU: Packers by 3; 45½

Fourth all-time meeting between teams 6-0 or better, and first since New England (8-0) at Indy (7-0) on Nov. 4, 2007. Green Bay is 23-7 in Sunday night games, top percentage in league. Packers are 8-1 after bye week under coach Mike McCarthy. LB Clay Matthews has sack in 10 of past 15 games. Broncos will induct owner Pat Bowlen into Ring of Fame at halftime. With win, Broncos' Peyton Manning ties Brett Favre for most victories (186) by QB in regular season. Denver ranks first in total defense, pass defense and sacks.

Jones: Packers 20, Broncos 17 Readers: Packers 75.6 percent

Colts at Panthers, 8:30 Monday

Line/OU: Panthers by 7; 46½ Colts have been outscored 69-32 in second quarter this season. Andrew Luck has thrown for 1,338 yards with 15 TDs and six INTs in past five games vs. NFC foes. Frank Gore has five straight games with 75-plus yards rushing. Panthers have won franchise record 10 straight regular-season games and are 6-0 for first time in history. QB Cam Newton has at least one TD pass and at least one TD rush in four of past five games Greg Olsen is one of three tight ends with 5,000 yards receiving and 40 or more TDs since 2008.

Jones: Panthers 26, Colts 20 Readers: Panthers 75.6 percent

Game text from Times wires. Bye week: Bills, Eagles, Jaguars, Redskins

Comments
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