NFL picks

Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 7 Picks: Will Falcons avenge Super Bowl loss to Patriots?

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Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 7 Picks: Will Falcons avenge Super Bowl loss to Patriots?

Derrick Gunn makes his picks for Week 7 of the NFL season.

Redskins at Eagles (8:30 p.m. on ESPN)
Because they have the best record in the NFC, the Eagles have a huge target on their backs and everybody is gunning for them. On Monday night, the Washington Redskins are hoping to take them down a notch. The ‘Skins come limping to the Linc. Their star rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is done for the year with a Lisfranc injury. Their starting cornerbacks Josh Norman (rib) and Bashaud Breeland (knee) both might miss this key divisional showdown.

Carson Wentz has the Eagles offense rolling, and the defense has been rock solid against the run. Kirk Cousins will go after a Birds secondary ranked 29th against the pass (273.5 yards per game). One of the key matchups to watch closely is how the Eagles will try to defend against ‘Skins running back Chris Thompson, who is Washington’s leading rusher. More importantly, he’s their leading receiver, averaging 18.9 yards per catch.

In Week One the Eagles sacked Kirk Cousins 4 times, but since then he’s only been sacked 4 times. The Birds broke the ‘Skins jinx in the season opener. I look for the home team to make it a season sweep.

Pick: Eagles 28, Redskins 24

Buccaneers at Bills (1 p.m. on FOX)
The good news for the Bucs is Jameis Winston is expected to play despite dealing with an AC joint sprain in his shoulder. The bad news for the Bucs is they’re playing against a Bills team coming off a bye and a Bills' defense that is No. 1 in the league in points allowed at 14.8 points per game. Tampa Bay is also winless on the road. That won’t change this week.

Pick: Buffalo

Panthers at Bears (1 p.m. on CBS)
The Panthers have had a long time to lick their wounds after their encounter with the Eagles. The Bears are riding high after a stunning road win at Baltimore. Until the Panthers learn how to run the ball effectively, better teams will make them one-dimensional. Chicago has a potent run game, averaging 136 yards, but has difficulty scoring, putting up just 17.5 points per game. The Panthers go into the Bears' den and claw out a win.

Pick: Carolina

Titans at Browns (1 p.m. on CBS)
Desperate men take desperate measures and Hue Jackson is desperate to change the misfortunes of his 0-6 Browns. Jackson is going back to rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer who has 3 touchdowns and 9 interceptions this year. Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota is still dealing with a nagging hamstring injury, but he fought through it last week and threw for 306 yards against the Colts. The combination of running backs Derrick Henry and DeMarco Murray takes a lot of pressure off Mariota. Look for the Titans to ground and pound the Browns.

Pick: Tennessee

Saints at Packers (1 p.m. on FOX)
These are dark days for Packers fans with Aaron Rodgers on the shelf with a broken collarbone. Meanwhile, the Saints have been marching, winning three straight. New Orleans has averaged 35 points in its last three and Drew Brees hasn’t thrown an interception since Week 1. The Saints will be doing more Lambeau Leaps than the Packers will this Sunday.

Pick: New Orleans

Jaguars at Colts (1 p.m. on CBS)
At 3-3, the Jaguars are tied for first place in the AFC South with Houston and Tennessee. Indy is just one game off the lead at 2-4. Jags rookie running back Leonard Fournette, who is second in the league in rushing, is questionable with an ankle injury. These Jaguars are an odd bunch to figure out and their wins have come in Weeks 1, 3, and 5. Since this is an odd week, I guess you know who I’m picking here.

Pick: Jacksonville

Cardinals at Rams (1 p.m. on FOX)
Looks like all the Cards needed was to find a running back to cure their offensive problems. In his Arizona debut last Sunday, Adrian Peterson had 26 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns, along with a Cards win. The Rams have the league’s fourth-leading rusher in Todd Gurley. Both teams' offenses have the capability to light it up through the air, but if it comes down to the run game the Rams could be in trouble, as they allow 139.5 yards per game. With that said, I like the Rams at home in a close game.

Pick: Los Angeles

Jets at Dolphins (1 p.m. on FOX)
After falling behind 17-0 in Atlanta last week, the Dolphins mounted an impressive rally to pull off an upset win. The Jets have surprised many with limited offensive talent and have found a way to win three games. Division matches are usually difficult to pinpoint. The Jets are not the Falcons and since the Dolphins beat Atlanta on the road, they should handle New York at home.

Pick: Miami

Ravens at Vikings (1 p.m. on CBS)
Who are these Ravens? They look like contenders one week, then unravel against a team like Chicago the next week and look like pretenders. Minnesota’s defense is fast and rugged. Vikings quarterback Case Keenum has a firm grip on the offense. The Vikings will win their third in a row.

Pick: Minnesota

Cowboys at 49ers (4:05 p.m. on FOX)
These Niners are an interesting bunch. They haven’t won a game, but they’re in most of them. The Niners have set an NFL record by losing five consecutive games by three points or less. The 'Boys are coming off a bye and look to regroup. Their defense has been hot or cold. In this case, their D can be lukewarm because the 'Boys have just enough offensive firepower to hold off the Niners.

Pick: Dallas

Seahawks at Giants (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
This should be one of those good old rock’em sock’em type matchups. The Seahawks' and Giants' defenses can both bring it. Big Blue shocked the world last week by manhandling the Broncos in Denver. Russell Wilson is one of the best in the game at extending plays with his feet. Eli Manning is a stationary target with very few weapons to work with. Yes, I remember they found a run game against the Broncos but the legion of boom and company will be ready for it.

Pick: Seattle

Bengals at Steelers (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
The Steelers put it all together last week to hand the Chiefs their first loss. Do you want defense? This game is about defense. The Bengals are ranked second and the Steelers are third best in the NFL. The Bengals are well-rested coming off a bye and will be waiting for Le’Veon Bell. The wide receivers in this AFC North showdown are exciting … Antonio Brown, A.J. Green, John Ross. The Bengals two-game win streak stops in Da Burgh.

Pick: Pittsburgh

Broncos at Chargers (4:25 p.m on CBS)
Remember how we were all snickering at the Chargers for inventing new ways to lose close games? Well, laugh no more. The Chargers have won their last two by a grand total of six points. Meanwhile, the Broncos have lost two of their last three. This game features premier pass rushers on both sides —Von Miller, Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. The Chargers are 0-3 at home. This is a pick’em game. After closing my eyes and throwing at a dart board, I’m picking the Chargers. Don’t ask me why.

Pick: Los Angeles

Falcons at Patriots (8:30 p.m. Sunday on NBC)
A rematch of last season’s Super Bowl. It would be a small measure of revenge for the Falcons, but Atlanta is having problems finding the end zone. In each of their last two games, the Falcons have been held to just 17 points and lost both. Brady and company know how to score, but the Pats' defense has been inconsistent stopping the opposition from scoring. However, maybe that’s changing. In its last two games, New England held Tampa Bay to 14 points and the Jets to 17 points. Atlanta presents a much bigger test, but never bet against Bill Belichick at home.

Pick: Patriots

Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 6 picks: Will Steelers give Chiefs 1st loss?

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Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 6 picks: Will Steelers give Chiefs 1st loss?

Dolphins at Falcons (1 p.m. on CBS)
The Falcons are raring to go coming off of a bye and the Dolphins' offense has all kinds of issues scoring points. Miami is on the road against a well-rested Falcons squad that has the fourth-ranked offense. Atlanta adds to Dolphins’ struggles.

Pick: Falcons

Packers at Vikings (1 p.m. on FOX)
Can the Pack come off that comeback win at Dallas? It looks like Sam Bradford may miss this NFC North matchup, but don’t sleep on Vikings backup quarterback Case Keenum. He has played well in the four games he has appeared in this year. Strange things usually happen when these two get together. Look for Aaron Rodgers and the Pack to get it done on the road.

Pick: Green Bay 

Lions at Saints (1 p.m. on FOX)
The Saints are coming off of their bye week and looking to win three in a row. The Lions have dropped two of their last three. Detroit’s defense is taking a hit with Haloti Ngata out for the season with an elbow injury. 50 points will easily be scored in this game, but because I like the Lions’ defense better, the Lions will roar.

Pick: Detroit

Patriots at Jets (1 p.m. on CBS)
It is possible this game could be closer than it should. The Pats’ defense can’t stop anybody and the Jets have been rolling, winning their last three. New York's defense has kept them in most games this season, giving up just 21 points per game. The Jets will give their AFC East rival all they can handle but the Brady Bunch will prevail.

Pick: New England

49ers at Redskins (1 p.m. on FOX)
The Niners are one of three winless teams left. The 'Skins are well rested. Washington will be without Josh Norman (ribs), and Rob Kelley (ankle) may not be ready. Kirk Cousins seems to be getting more comfortable with his wide receivers. The Niners are making a long trip east for their sixth loss.

Pick: Washington

Bears at Ravens (1 p.m. on FOX)
The Mitchell Trubisky era is upon us. In his debut against the Vikings, he made some plays but missed on many and threw an interception that cost them the game. But he's a rookie getting valuable job training. Unfortunately for Trubisky, the Ravens haven’t lost at home to a rookie quarterback since 1997. That won't change this time.

Pick: Baltimore

Browns at Texans (1 p.m. on CBS)
I can’t even begin to imagine what it's like to be a Browns fan. They can't win, can't find a quarterback and it just goes on and on. The Texans lost their emotional leader, J.J. Watt, for the season. Rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson has Texans fans excited. He will put on a show against the Charlie Browns of the NFL.

Pick: Houston

Buccaneers at Cardinals (4:05 p.m. on FOX)
Will the Cards’ lethargic run game finally get a jolt with the recent addition of Adrian Peterson? Hard to do when Arizona’s offensive line has been a disaster. I still can't figure out the Bucs' sixth-ranked offense — they have so many weapons yet score only 21.3 points per game. Lucky for the Bucs, ‘Zona is averaging only 16.2. I have a feeling the Cardinals put it together this week and ease some of their season-long frustrations.

Pick: Arizona

Rams at Jaguars (4:05 p.m. on FOX)
Who would have thought this would have been viewed as a marquee matchup? Both teams are 3-2 with Jacksonville coming off an impressive road win at Pittsburgh. The Jags are loaded on defense, and Jared Goff leads the fifth-ranked Rams offense, which is averaging 30 points. The Rams are unbeaten on the road but their run defense gives up 133 yards per game, while the Jags lead the league in rushing at 165 yards per game. I'm taking Jacksonville at home.

Pick: Jacksonville

Steelers at Chiefs (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
After losing last Sunday against Jacksonville, Ben Roethlisberger doubted himself, but recently Big Ben seems to be back in the proper football frame of mind. The Chiefs lost wide receiver Chris Conley for the season to an ACL injury but still have plenty of offensive firepower. Travis Kelce was in concussion protocol but is practicing. Chiefs will remain unbeaten.

Pick: Kansas City

Chargers at Raiders (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
The Chargers finally got in the win column at the expense of the Giants. The Raiders are not the same team without their quarterback Derek Carr, but somehow, some way, Carr is going to play this week while dealing with a fractured bone in his back. If Carr is healthy enough to step on the field, that's good enough for me. 

Pick: Oakland

Giants at Broncos (8:30 p.m. on NBC)
Saying the Giants are a mess is an understatement. It’s bad enough they're winless but against the Chargers, they lost four receivers. Odell Beckham Jr., Brandon Marshall, and Dwayne Harris are done for the season. Then we find out cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is suspended for this game. Throw in injuries to other key players and it’s a wonder New York can field a team. Now, Big Blue has to go into the Broncos' domain. The Broncos will stampede all over the G-Men.

Pick: Denver

Colts at Titans (8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN)
While the Titans must wait and hope that quarterback Marcus Mariota will play (hamstring), the Colts already know Andrew Luck is out for a sixth straight week. Both squads are 2-3 and both defenses have struggled. The Titans give up 28.4 ppg and the Colts allow 31.8 ppg. I'll take the Titans at home.

Pick: Tennessee

Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 5 picks: Will the Packers send the Cowboys below .500?

Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 5 picks: Will the Packers send the Cowboys below .500?

Derrick Gunn makes his picks for Week 5 of the NFL season.

Cardinals at Eagles (1 p.m. on FOX)
The Cardinals have been hard to figure out. They struggled to beat the Colts and 49ers, and got handled by the Lions and Cowboys. Their offense is ranked No. 11 overall, but they've struggled to score, averaging just 18.5 points per game. And they can’t run the ball, either. Since star running back David Johnson went down with a dislocated wrist, the Cards' run game has been stagnant and it currently sits dead last in the league in rushing (57 yards per game).

Carson Palmer has the second-most passing yards, but has been the most-sacked QB in the league (17 times). Their No. 7-ranked defense is big and rugged, but suffered a big blow when LB Markus Golden was lost for the season with an ACL injury.

Carson Wentz has matured into his role in the offense, making better decisions with the ball. The Birds' run game has given them a balance that takes pressure off the QB. Fletcher Cox has been ruled out, but there’s still enough talent in the trenches to make life miserable for Palmer. The back end of the Birds' defense is giving up too many big plays and that could be a big problem this week because the Cardinals' speed at wide receiver is better than the Chargers'. If Jim Schwartz's guys get to Palmer, the Birds will get the win. 

Pick: Eagles 24, Cardinals 20

Bills at Bengals (1 p.m. on CBS)
I see you, Buffalo. When you beat Denver at home and go into Atlanta and win in back-to-back weeks, people start to take notice. Sean McDermott has his guys believing in themselves. The Bills' offense isnt flashy, but the defense is physical and stingy. Their defense is No. 8 overall and No. 1 in scoring, allowing just 13.5 points per game. The Bengals have this one at home, but the Bills will roll to their fourth win.

Pick: Bills

Jets at Browns (1 p.m. on FOX)
Who are these Jets? They lose their first two games of the season, but are now on a two-game winning streak. Over his last two outings, 38-year-old Josh McCown has completed 74 percent of his passes. The Browns' youth movement has been painful and 21-year-old rookie QB DeShone Kizer is at the center of it. Kizer's numbers say it all: 51.4 completion percentage with three touchdowns and eight interceptions. Cleveland will lose its fifth straight.

Pick: Jets

Panthers at Lions (1 p.m. on FOX)
This should be a fun game to watch as both teams are 3-1. Cam Newton and Matthew Stafford are two different styles of quarterback but they can both wing it. The Panthers have the No. 4-ranked defense, but the Lions are tied for the league lead in takeaways with 11. Slight edge to the Lions at home.

Pick: Lions

49ers at Colts (1 p.m. on FOX)
The 49ers gave the Cardinals all they could handle last week and even sacked Palmer six times. The Colts led the Seahawks by five at the half last week, but reality set in in the second half when Indy got outscored, 36-3. Jacoby Brissett continues to improve, but the 49ers' defense will give him problems. I like winless San Fran in a mild upset.

Pick: 49ers

Titans at Dolphins (1 p.m. on CBS)
Tennessee is hurting. Marcus Mariota is dealing with a hamstring injury and may sit this one out. The Dolphins finally get to play a home game, but will Miami's offense show up? The Dolphins have scored only six points in their last two games. Who wins the battle on the ground? The Dolphins' No. 4 run defense (77.7 yards per game) or the Titans' No. 6 rushing attack (138.8 yards per game)? Jay Cutler finally puts it all together.

Pick: Dolphins

Chargers at Giants (1 p.m. on CBS)
Both the Chargers and Giants have plenty of talent, they just don't have any wins. They both have two of the worst run defenses in the league. He who makes the fewest mistakes will come out on top. I'm just glad I don't have to watch this mess. Since the G-Men have the home-field advantage, I will give them the advantage here.

Pick: Giants

Jaguars at Steelers (1 p.m. on CBS)
The Jags have two impressive wins this season but they've also had two disappointing losses. Their run defense is like Swiss cheese, ranked dead last allowing 165.5 yards per game. That's not a good sign going against the Steelers' Le'Veon Bell.

Blake Bortles still has not consistently elevated his game. The Jags get deflated in the 'Burgh.

Pick: Steelers

Ravens at Raiders (4:05 p.m. on CBS)
Two teams doing some soul searching for different reasons. The Ravens have lost two straight, and in those games, Joe Flacco has just one TD and four INTs. The break for Baltimore is that Derek Carr may be out — and possibly two to six weeks — with a fracture in his back. I don't trust EJ Manuel replacing Carr if needed. The Ravens get back in the win column.

Pick: Ravens

Seahawks at Rams (4:05 p.m. on CBS)
One of the biggest surprise teams in the league is the Rams. Jared Goff is looking like a future star (seven TDs, one INT), Todd Gurley is running with authority again and the additions of WRs Sammy Watkins, Robert Woods and rookie Cooper Kupp have given the Rams a legit passing game. The Seahawks' secondary is nicked up; S Earl Thomas (knee) and CB Jeremy Lane (groin) haven't practiced this week. This is a big statement game for the Rams against their division rival. I think the Rams get it done at home.

Pick: Rams

Packers at Cowboys (4:25 p.m. FOX)
The Packers have had extended time off after their Thursday night blowout win over Chicago and should get some of their banged-up players back. Dallas' defense is also looking to get some much-needed help back. Aaron Rodgers, who's been sacked 15 times, will have to know where DE Demarcus Lawrence is at all times. Lawrence leads the league in sacks with 7½. Green Bay's run game is marginal, but look for Rodgers to shred the Cowboys' rebuilt secondary.

Pick: Packers

Chiefs at Texans (8:30 p.m. on NBC)
Looks like the Texans have found themselves a QB. Last week against Tennessee, rookie Deshaun Watson accounted for five Houston TDs (four passing, one rushing). Kansas City has found all kinds of ways to remain the league's lone undefeated team. Houston has the perfect blend of power and speed on defense to match up with the Chiefs' weapons. I think the Chiefs take their first loss.

Pick: Texans

Vikings at Bears (8:30 p.m. Monday on ESPN)
It's a coming out party for Bears first-round pick QB Mitchell Trubisky. Unfortunately for him, he has very little talent to work with at the WR position. The Bears have a nice tandem of talented RBs in Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen. The Vikings' No. 12 defense has been relentless, recording 11 sacks and giving up just 19.3 points per game. With or without Sam Bradford at the helm, the Vikings overwhelm young Trubisky and the Bears.

Pick: Vikings