View from the Sidelines

NFL Predictions – Week 14Game of the weekPittsburgh at New England – Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin knows that the key to slowing down New England is getting pressure on QB Tom Brady. But Pats coach Bill Belichick knows this, and you can bet he’ll find some new wrinkles in his playbook and win again.Pats over the Steelers, 31-24The best of the restChicago at Washington – Conventional wisdom says that special teamers aren’t usually deciding factors in games, but KR/PR Devin Hester gives the Bears the edge.Bears down the Redskins, 34-24St. Louis at Cincinnati – The Rams are a different football team when they’re healthy, which they weren’t for the first half of the season.Rams beat the Bengals, 31-26San Diego at Tennessee – The Titans or the Chargers will have to step up big to stake their claim to the AFC playoff picture. RB LaDanian Tomlinson should carry the Chargers.Chargers bolt the Titans, 28-14Dallas at Detroit – Detroit is suddenly fading from the playoff picture while Dallas is going full steam ahead toward home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs.Cowboys ride past the Lions, 42-24Tampa Bay at Houston – QB Matt Schaub will need to play lights-out and mistake-free for the Texans to out-score the Bucs. No small feat.Bucs bash the Texans, 24-13Oakland at Green Bay – QB Brett Favre’s consecutive game streak is apparently in no jeopardy, and the Packers should rebound nicely from a tough loss at Dallas.Packers pound the Raiders, 31-14Carolina at Jacksonville – The Jags need every game left on their schedule to stay in the hunt in the AFC South and the playoff picture.Jaguars rip up the Panthers, 27-13New York Giants at Philadelphia – Is the Donovan McNabb era over in Philly? Regardless of who lines up under center for the Eagles, Giants QB Eli Manning will need to out-perform them to keep his team in the hunt.Giants over Eagles, 28-13Miami at Buffalo – The Bills were hardly able to beat the Dolphins last time. Despite losing, Miami looked like it wanted it more in that game, and should come out on top this time against Buffalo.Fins get a win, 14-10Minnesota at San Francisco – The Vikings are on a mission in the NFC, while the 49ers are looking to next year … again.Vikings over Niners, 31-17Arizona at Seattle – The Seahawks are looking for another division crown, but the Cardinals quest for a playoff spot should hamper down the weakest division-leading team in the NFL.Cardinals fly past the Seahawks, 28-24Cleveland at New York Jets – The Jets seem to have found their QB of the future in Kellen Clemens, but that future isn’t now.Browns ground the Jets, 30-20Kansas City at Denver – Despite minimal playoff chances, Chiefs versus Broncos is a rivalry game that always means something. Broncos QB Jay Cutler should be able to lead Denver to a win.Denver over the Chiefs, 26-20Indianapolis at Baltimore – The Ravens defense is top-five against the run, which means QB Peyton Manning will need to limit his mistakes and play well for Indy to beat the Ravens.Colts over Ravens, 27-17New Orleans at Atlanta – The Saints will just need to go out and execute their offense to defeat a Falcons team that looks like it’s been playing for 2008 since Week 6.Saints march over the Falcons, 33-13