After an exciting start to the season for Thursday Night Football, Week 8 kicks off with a Brock Osweiler revenge game against the Houston Texans. After starting 3-0 and 0-3 to start the year, Miami and Houston both come in at 4-3.
Things do pick up on Sunday however with the third and final London game of the season — pitting two desperate teams in the Philadelphia Eagles and Jacksonville Jaguars against one another. Blake Bortles was benched last week after a string of horrendous play, a slight glimpse that Doug Marrone may be looking to move on from his starting signal caller should his poor play continue.
For the defending Super Bowl champions, Philadelphia has had trouble closing out games this season and finding consistency within its play, making this matchup against a good Jacksonville D very intriguing.
A Panthers/Ravens matchup and a rematch of a previous Monday Night Football game between the Chiefs and Broncos highlight the 1 p.m. slate. A sneaky game to keep an eye on, with potential to be the game of the week, falls in Detroit as the Seahawks face the Lions. The Seahawks seem to have finally found a ground and pound run game, and the Lions just traded for Damian Harrison to improve their subpar run defense. Two of the better quarterbacks in football should only create a bigger fixture for the early games.
Indianapolis travels out to Oakland to take on the empty Raiders’ roster. Andrew Luck and the Indy offense have faced some of the better defenses in football this season, so taking on a Raiders defense with minimal talent should be easily exposable for all 60 minutes. A banged-up Aaron Rodgers faces his greatest test of the season, and the pressure up the middle from Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh should add a poignant threat to the most talented slinger of the football.
Sunday Night Football is a rematch of the divisional-round thriller from a year ago, as New Orleans returns to the same stadium where their postseason ended on a walk-off touchdown from Stefon Diggs. Everything seems to be going the right way for Drew Brees and the Saints this season, so exacting their revenge and removing the haunting demon of last year’s loss will be pivotal for them moving forward.
Week 8 starts with a snore-fest, why not end with one? New England visits Derek Anderson and the Buffalo Bills. After losing to the Colts by 32 points, a team that lost to the Patriots by 14, don’t expect for your Monday night to live up to it’s primetime slot.
With all that said, here are this week’s standings in Stampede Blue’s staff picks for the season and their predictions for Week 8 in the NFL.
Chris Shepherd: 56-35 / Brett Mock: 56-35 / Stephen Reed: 53-38 / Andrew Aziz: 52-39 / Chris Blystone: 52-39 / Elliot Denton: 52-39 / Jared Malott: 49-42 / Matt Danely: 33-29 / Zachary Hicks: 29-31 / Blake Pace: 9-5
Thursday 8:20 pm ET
Dolphins (6) @ Texans | Contrarians: Blake Pace, Jared Malott, Andrew Aziz, Brett Mock
Sunday 9:30 am ET
Eagles @ Jaguars (London)
Sunday 1:00 pm ET
Ravens (7) @ Panthers | Contrarians: Chris Shepherd, Stephen Reed, Chris Blystone
Broncos @ Chiefs
Seahawks @ Lions (7) | Contrarians: Pace, Malott, Mock
Sunday 4:05 pm ET
Colts @ Raiders
Sunday 4:25 pm ET
Sunday 8:20 pm ET
Saints (7) @ Vikings | Contrarians: Blystone, Reed, Denton
Monday 8:15 pm ET
Patriots @ Bills