NFL Week 8: Preview & Analysis
Every week, AccuScore’s computer simulates every game in the NFL 10,000 times to arrive at detailed projections and game predictions. With 7 weeks of the 2012 NFL season finished, AccuScore has analysis on every game for Week 8. The Super Computer also has Betting Picks against the spread and on totals for each of these games, go to NFL Expert Picks
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TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS @ MINNESOTA VIKINGS
The Vikings are 65% home favorites, but they need Christian Ponder to stop throwing INTs. After going the first month without an INT he has thrown 2 per game the past 3 weeks. There is a 36% chance he throws 2 INTs and if he does the Vikings only have a 43% chance. If Josh Freeman has another big game (300+ passing yards) the Bucs chances actually go down to 31% because a big passing game from Freeman indicates the team is playing from behind. Adrian Peterson is averaging twice as many rushing yards per sim than Doug Martin. In the 20% of simulations where Martin out-rushes Peterson Tampa Bay wins 69% of the time.
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS @ GREEN BAY PACKERS
Green Bay is only averaging 79 rushing yards on 3.0 ypc per sim but they are still winning 89% of the simulations thanks to another 300 yd, 3 TD Aaron Rodgers stat line. If Aaron Rodgers has under 250 yards, no more than 2 TDs and at least 1 INT the Packers' chances drop to 72%. If the Jags limit Rodgers and get a big 75+ yards and 1 or more rushing TD from Rashad Jennings then Jacksonville is the 51% favorite. If Jennings cannot put up big numbers filling in for Maurice Jones-Drew and has under 75 rushing yards then Jacksonville only has a 6% chance.
MIAMI DOLPHINS @ NEW YORK JETS
The Jets are winning by the slightest 50.3% margin (an average of less than half a point per sim). Shonn Greene has 4 TDs the past 2 weeks. If he has a rushing TD the Jets are heavy 70% favorites, but when he does not score the Jets only win 42% of the simulations. Reggie Bush is forecasted for 76 yards on 4.7 ypc against the 29th ranked Jets run defense. If Bush has 75 or more rushing yards then the Dolphins have a 68% chance of winning. Mark Sanchez has completed 66% of his passes the past 2 weeks. There is a 22% chance he completes over 60% this week and if he does the Jets are solid 70% favorites.
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS @ CLEVELAND BROWNS
Philip Rivers has 9 INTs in 6 games and even though he has a 34% chance of throwing 2 or more INTs the Chargers are still 64% favorites. If Rivers has no more than 1 INT and Ryan Mathews averages at least 4.5 ypc the Chargers have a 79% of winning. If he has 2 or more INTs and Mathews averages under 4.5 ypc the Chargers only have a 34% chance. Trent Richardson is hurt and only averaging 3.5 ypc. If the Browns average over 4.5 ypc for at least 100 rushing yards then Cleveland is actually the 55% favorite.
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS @ TENNESSEE TITANS
Chris Johnson is projected for his 3rd straight strong game with an average of 90 rushing yards on 4.7 ypc. As a result, the Titans are getting the slight 53% edge. There is a 43% chance that Johnson averages under 4.0 ypc and if he does the Titans become the 42% underdog. Andrew Luck is projected for 266 passing yards but the RBs are only projected for 62 rushing yards. If the Colts average over 5.0 ypc then they are 56% favorites, but if they are held under 4.0 ypc then Indianapolis only has a 44% chance. There is a 20% chance that Andrew Luck has a rushing and a passing TD and if he does the Colts are 70% favorites.
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS @ ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
The Rams are winning just 24% of simulations because the offense cannot score more than 20 points. They have scored more than 20 just twice this year and only once did they do it without have multiple INTs from the opposing QB. If they get 2 Tom Brady INTs and Sam Bradford has at least one passing TD then the Rams are 51% favorites. In simulations where the Rams win they hold the Patriots to just 19 points, Tom Brady averages as many INTs as TDs and the Patriots average just 3.8 ypc. If the Rams have 120+ rushing yards on 5.0 ypc and they sack Tom Brady at least 4 times then the Rams actually are the 61% favorite.
ATLANTA FALCONS @ PHILADELPHIA EAGLES
Michael Vick is averaging 2 turnovers per simulation and as a result the Falcons are 56% road favorites. If the Eagles do not turn the ball over more than once then Philadelphia is the 55% favorite, but if they have 3 or more turnovers the Eagles only have a 33% chance. Matt Ryan is passing for 280 yards and 2 TDs per sim. If the Eagles pass rush forces Ryan to complete under 60% of his passes, intercepts him at least once and sacks Ryan 3 or more times then Philly is the 69% favorite. If Ryan is well protected (under 3 sacks, no more than 1 INT, over 60% comp) then Atlanta is the heavy 75% favorite.
CAROLINA PANTHERS @ CHICAGO BEARS
Chicago is the heavy 76% favorite. There is only a 22% chance that Cam Newton throws more TD passes than INTs, but if he does the Panthers are just 46% underdogs. If Newton has more TDs than INTs and rushes for at least 50 yards then Carolina is the 66% favorite. If the Bears defense forces more Newton INTs than TDs and hold him under 50 rushing yards then Chicago is the heavy 92% favorite. The Panthers have not been a great rushing team this season. If they out-rush the Bears and the defense can sack Jay Cutler at least 3 times then Carolina is the 57% favorite.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS @ DETROIT LIONS
The Seahawks defense has held teams to just 15.1 points per game, but the Lions are still the 63% favorite with an average of 23 points per sim. In simulated Seahawks wins the Lions only score 16 points per and Matthew Stafford has more INTs than TDs. There is a 19% chance that Stafford has more INTs than TDs and if he does the Lions only have a 33% chance. But if in the 58% of simulations where he has more TDs than INTs then Detroit has a 77% chance. If Russell Wilson does not throw more than 1 INT and Marshawn Lynch has a big 75+ yard, 1+ rushing TD game the Seattle is the 67% favorite.
WASHINGTON REDSKINS @ PITTSBURGH STEELERS
The Steelers are 71% favorites even though Robert Griffin III is averaging 230 passing yards and 55 rushing yards per sim. For Washington to win they need a huge RGIII performance. Even when he has at least 250+ passing yards, 75+ rushing yards, 1 rushing TD and 2 passing TDs the Redskins only are the 54% favorite. Ben Roethlisberger is projected for big numbers vs the Redskins who are dead last vs the pass. If Roethlisberger has 275+ yards, 2+ TDs and no more than 1 INT the Steelers are 80% favorites. There is only a 14% chance Roethlisberger has more INTs than TDs, but if he does Washington is the 56% favorite.
OAKLAND RAIDERS @ KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
Brady Quinn is slotted to be the starter this week but the Raiders are the 51% favorite. The Chiefs will look to the running game to dominate and Quinn to limit turnovers. If the Chiefs have more rushing yards than the Raiders and Kansas City does not have more than 2 turnovers then KC is actually the 70% favorite. There is still a 30% chance that KC has 3 or more turnovers and if they do then Oakland has a 57% chance of winning. Darren McFadden is only averaging 3.1 ypc this season. If he averages under 3.0 ypc this game then Oakland only has a 41% chance, but if he hits his career average of 4.5 ypc then Oakland is the 65% favorite.
NEW YORK GIANTS @ DALLAS COWBOYS
The Giants are the slightest 51% favorite but this does assume that DeMarco Murray is not going to be healthy to play his normal starting role at RB. The Cowboys are averaging just under 100 rushing yards on 3.6 ypc per simulation. If they have 100+ yards on 4.5+ ypc then Dallas is the 68% favorite, but if the Giants out-rush the Cowboys then NY is the 71% favorite. Tony Romo is projected for more passing yards (304 to 280) and TDs (2.2 to 1.9) than Eli Manning, but Manning is averaging fewer INTs (0.9 vs 1.2). If the Giants sack Romo 4 or more times then NY is the 60% favorite. If Romo can evade the pass rush (fewer than 3 sacks) and Dallas commits fewer than 3 turnovers then Dallas is the 66% favorite.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS @ DENVER BRONCOS
This should be the highest scoring game of the week with Denver being the 58% favorite. There is a 20% chance that both teams score at least 30 points and Denver is the 55% favorite in a shootout. Both Brees and Manning are averaging over 300 passing yards and 2.3 TD passes. If Brees has more TD passes than Manning the Saints are 66% favorites. But if Brees has 2 or more INTs then New Orleans only has a 23% chance. There is only a 42% chance that Peyton Manning has an INT, but if he does the Broncos' chances drop to 45%, but if he has no INTs (a 58% chance) then Denver is the 68% favorite.
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS @ AIRZONA CARDINALS
San Francisco is the 72% favorite. Even though LaRod Stephens-Howling rushed for over 100 yards vs Minnesota, the 49ers defense is holding him to under 40 yards on 2.8 ypc in simulations. If Arizona can have 100+ rushing yards on 4.5+ ypc as a team then the Cardinals' chances jump from 28% to 46%. If the Cardinals defense also hold the 49ers to under 125 rushing yards then Arizona is the 63% favorite. Alex Smith is putting up modest numbers (192 yards, under 1 pass TD per sim). If Arizona's defense intercepts Smith at least once and sacks him 4 or more times then Arizona has a 51% chance. But if Smith has no more than 1 INT and under 4 sacks then SF ist he heavy 85% favorite.