The Riverfront Reporter
NFLAY Player Newsletter
ed Robert Crowther
Welcome to the fifth instalment of The Riverfront Reporter, once again I must thank Andy Crawley for writing most of it. If you have anything to say about the NFLAY send it to me at:
79 Petworth Road
Or email me at '[email protected]'. Next issue is scheduled for appearing with week nine, so any contributions need to reach me on the Saturday before the week nine deadline.
Review of Week Five
Week 5 saw a series of divisional matchups, with a few crunch games... more later. Last beat first in the AFC east, and the NFC central and east, opening up all 3 divisions. The Bengals suffered a heartbreaker in losing 28-25 to the (still) unbeaten Superbowl champs in OT, a defeat which may weigh heavily come the playoffs . The Vikings registered their first win of the campaign, and the weeks highest aggregate, 34-24 against the Lions; the Seahawks also registered their first tick in style by shutting out the Chiefs 10-0.
An odd week for rushing: normally around half fail to make 100 yards on the ground, but this week 6 teams failed to even make 50.
Review of Week Six
Martin Milner resigned as Head Coach of the Packers after a miserable 0-5 start to the year. New incumbent James Mackay instantly raised morale, scoring a 19-7 win over the Jets. The Bears produced possibly the best comeback I've seen in this League: After the Dolphins leaped to a 20-0 lead the Bears not only shut them out in the second half but scored 21 4th quarter points to win the game. The Chiefs racked up 198 yards rushing in a 23-10 win over the Giants, and Coach Wingate led the Rams to their first win of the season, 24-31 over the Steelers.
Six Week Summary
The AFC picture looks much clearer, with the Seahawks, Chargers and Steelers having a lot of ground to make up to make the playoffs. The NFC is still pretty much an open race: the 3 leaders all have a safety margin, but pretty much all the others have a chance of at least a wild card. As the schedule starts to even out the teams lagging behind are starting to pick up wins at the expense of the front-runners (for those not in the know, division winners have a softer start to the schedule, teams in 3rd place face something like 4 division champs in 5 weeks. After 6 weeks it starts to even back out).
And the Panthers still can't bloody run.
Preview of Week 7
Predictions and commentary from myself, other predictions from Andy Crawley.
Colts at Chiefs
RC The Kansas City pass defense might offer some resistance to the Indianapolis offense, but it seems unlikely the Chiefs' offense will be able to take advantage. Colts by 10
AC Colts by 14
Patriots at Seahawks
RC New England seem to have a clear advantage on both sides of the ball, they should run all over Seattle. Patriots by 14
AC Pats by 10
Jets at Jaguars
RC Jacksonville find themselves in playoff contention despite some defensive problems in the early weeks of the season. New York gain lots of yards but struggle in the redzone. Jaguars by 3
AC Jags by 7
Dolphins at Steelers
RC Miami are in the race for a division title, Pittsburgh are leading the race for the top draft pick, enough said. Dolphins by 10
AC Fins by 7
Bengals at Raiders
RC Cincinnati are coming two consecutive defeats and really need a win to stay in playoff contention. Oakland, meanwhile, seem revitalised since the return of their coach.
AC Bengals by 3
Ravens at Chargers
RC San Diego faced the Ravens in the AFC Championship game last season, that game marked a downturn in fortunes for the Chargers while Baltimore have just kept on winning. Ravens by 14
Cowboys at Falcons
RC The Dallas defense is looking fairly awesome this season, Atlanta will be looking for a few turnovers to stand any chance. Cowboys by 7
AC Cowboys by 7
Redskins at Rams
RC The St Louis run defense has been struggling all season, even the Washington offense should be able to take advantage. Redskins by 3
AC Rams by 3
Eagles at Bears
RC The Bears look a different team this season, the Philadelphia defense might be able to slow them down, but not enough. Bears by 7
AC Bears by 10
Giants at Packers
RC A new coach in Green Bay gets a relatively easy start, the Giants appear to be slumping while the Packers are on a high after getting their first win last week. Packers by 1
AC Packers by 3
Lions at 49ers
RC Detroit don't have quite the firepower of the 49ers though a slightly better defense makes up for that, but San Francisco's big game pedigree will give them the edge in key situations. 49ers by 10
AC Both must win to stay in touch with their division leaders, and it should be a scorefest too! Niners by 14
Vikings at Panthers
RC Hard to see the Minnesota defense offering much opposition to the NFC champions. Panthers by 14
Predictions for Week Eight
Dolphins at Colts AC Fins by 7 RC Colts by 3
Jets at Patriots AC Pats by 3 RC Jets by 3
Jaguars at Bengals AC Bengals by 7
Steelers at Ravens AC Ravens by 21 RC Ravens by 20
Seahawks at Raiders AC Raiders by 7 RC Raiders by 10
Chiefs at Chargers AC Chargers by 2 RC Chiefs by 7
Giants at Cowboys AC Cowboys by 3 RC Cowboys by 7
Eagles at Redskins AC Skins by 3 RC Eagles by 7
Bears at Lions AC Bears by 7 RC Bears by 7
Packers at Vikings AC Pack by 3 RC Packers by 7
Rams at 49ers AC Niners by 7 RC 49ers by 7
Falcons at Panthers RC Panthers by 10
2003 Season Week 7