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Home / Articles / Mike Handzelek's NFL Week 7 Analysis/Review/Notes/Power Rankings

Mike Handzelek's NFL Week 7 Analysis/Review/Notes/Power Rankings

By: Point Shaver Handzelek     Date: Oct 29, 2022
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Sunday, October 23, 2022 Indianapolis Colts vs. Tennessee Titans (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick Pick: Point Spread: +2.5/-105 Indianapolis Colts Rating: 10* Mike's Public Missed Perception Play Of The Week (LOSS) It certainly looks like Indy QB Matt Ryan (1,765 passing yards, 8/7 TD/INT ratio, 67.2% completions) looks like he finally got his feet wet last week when he passed for 389 yards (was not sacked) against the NFL's 7th-ranked in points allowed Jacksonville defense. He's thrown for more yards on the season than ANY NFC QB that includes Tom Brady, Matthew Stafford, Aaron Rodgers or Jared Goff. Guess what? He now gets to face the NFL's worse pass defense, 28th in yards yielded & worst in the NFL in YPP margin (- 1.4) in the Tennessee Titans. They've allowed 4 consecutive 300+ yards in passing for the 1st time in franchise history. There's a side story that should come into play early as Titans' RB Derrick Henry tied Earl Campbell (of Houston Oilers' fame) @ 73 career franchise TD's in his last game & needs 1 to tie but 2 to break the record of 74 set by Eddie George. However, the problem with these Titans is they STILL (after their bye week) have a team resembling a MASH unit with 21 players either, out, on IR or playing hurt. Yes, HC Mike Vrabel's squad are great starters with 82 1st-half points in 5 games. My concern is what happens in the SECOND half where they've scored 14 points total including NONE in the 4th quarter. Showing a lack of halftime adjustments isn't a recipe for wins OR covers. They're also 1 of 3 teams (Houston & Pittsburgh) that been out-gained in every contest this season. Another Titans' red flag has to be their 24-17 1st meeting win over the Colts (Indy receivers dropped wide-open throws) where they had to hang on despite decisively winning the turnover war 3-0. It's tough sustaining QB pressure for a team already without OLB Harold Landry, III (torn ACL) & OLB Bud Dupree trying to play with a hip injury. They've been marginal @ best in their 2 home games losing to the Giants 21-20 while edging the Raiders 24-22 last time out. Let's get into the numbers & analytics where Indianapolis seems to thrive @ Tennessee covering the past 7 of 10. The road team has also RULED this series covering the past 7 of 8. My bottom line points to several advantages for Indy that start by getting RB's Jonathan Taylor AND Nyheim Hines back in the lineup. Digging in a little deeper reveals 3-2 SU teams off 3 wins have gone a perfect 0-3 SU & ATS off a bye week in Week 6. Look for Matt Ryan to stay focused again as he's a perfect 4-0 SU & ATS versus divisional opponents off a bye. HC Frank Reich (with a new-look vertical passing game) & his Colts are also a lights-out 7-1 versus the number against any team coming off their bye week. Besides the mushes heavily betting on Nashville's Finest, knowing the Titans have just 3 out of 15 returns to the window when in their 1st of 2 consecutive divisional tilts says we have more than something brewing! This looks to be an in-the-trenches war that Indianapolis (10th overall in total "D"-Tenn. 28th) should stay in it to win it IF they can stay even or on the plus side in turnover differential. Let's get pumped as we go Nissan Stadium in Nashville to play a rare 10 Stars on the INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (buying to + 3 1/2) with a lot of pasta on the ML as my Public Missed Perception Play Of The Week! New York Giants vs. Jacksonville Jaguars (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick Pick: Money Line: -160 Jacksonville Jaguars Rating: 8* Mike's Defensive Battle Survivor (LOSS) I'm not reading too much into the Jaguars 2-16 ATS record versus NFC teams. Their last win was against these same Giants. What's going to happen this time? The current Jacksonville lineup is built to beat New York. They'll face a one-dimensional offense since the NY Football Giants (5-1 SU but that's taking on the 26th-toughest schedule) rank 31st in passing offense, 25th in total offense & a near-bottom 28th in rushing defense. On the flip side, Saquon Barkley has 771 combined rushing & receiving yards leading his team in rushing yards (616) & receptions (21). Yes, new HC Brian Daboll is definitely getting major consideration for NFL Coach of the Year honors. However, these same Jaguars were able to figure out Josh Allen & the Bills 9-6 on this field last season. Daboll was on the Buffalo sidelines then. It's just hard for ANY team to continue to be out-gained (were a 406-238 deficit @ home versus Baltimore last week & yielded 7 YPP) & put up a chunk of road wins (2-0 away from MetLife) on a consistent basis. The Jags are no slouches on defense @ home. Thus far, they are yielding a very stingy 6.5 PPG in Florida. This is a horrible situational spot for NY coming off a London win over the Packers 27-22 followed by a come-from-behind 24-20 home victory over Baltimore last week. My bottom line says QB Trevor Lawrence (Post-Meyer) is much improved since under the tutelage of HC Doug Pederson posting 1,397 passing yards, a 9/4 TD/INT ratio & a 65.5% completion rate. He now has a reliable RB in Travis Etienne whose running @ a 5.57 yards per clip. His emerging go-to receiver is Christian Kirk who has 362 receiving yards & 4 TD's. The Jaguars "D" should tell the tale ranking 3rd in rushing "D" & 7th in points yielded. Jacksonville ranks a very-high 9th in YPP margin & that's after taking on the 12th toughest schedule. Keep in mind it's very hard to put up a large string of W's when every game (all 6) has been decided by one possession. The Giants are 0-4 ATS in this series their last 4 meetings & come in carrying a 2-5 pointspread their last 7 true road games. Let's fly to Florida's TIAA Bank Field to play the JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS for the "W" as my 8 Star Defensive Battle Survivor! Atlanta Falcons vs. Cincinnati Bengals (NFL) - 1:00 PM EDT Premium Pick Pick: Point Spread: +6.5/-105 Atlanta Falcons Rating: 8* Mike's NFL Barking Out Loud Dogger (LOSS) Yes, the 3-3 SU Bengals have another shot to make the AFC playoffs this season. However, they are NOT of that same caliber as they were on offense last season. QB Joe Burrow is enjoying decent stats (1,616 passing yards, 12/5 TD/INT ratio, 66.7% completion rate) but protection has been an issue once again with him being sacked a 2nd-most 22 times (the Cincy sack-pack has 9). RB Joe Mixon (3.3 YPC) has not emerged as a dominant back thus far 6 games into the season. The Queen City Men take on an Arthur Smith squad that's 3-3 SU that have lost 3 games by a combined 11 points. The matchup category where Atlanta holds the upper hand is with the running game. The 49ers had no answer for it last week (40 rushes for 168 yards) in a 28-14 Falcons' win wearing their throwback red helmets. Georgia's Finest are still flying under the radar by rushing for 165 YPG that ranks 3rd in the NFL behind Cleveland & Chicago. They face a Cincy rushing "D" that ranks a distant 27th heading in. My bottom line says so goes QB Marcus Mariota, so goes the Atlanta Falcons. He may not have dazzling passing stats with a 6/4 TD/INT ratio but he's making his healthy presence known rushing for 206 yards & 3 TD's. Mariota has been complemented well by rookie surprise RB Tyler Algeier out of BYU. OC Dave Ragone has excellent RPO's that's given the revitalized Mariota room to be creative. Crunching the numbers show both of these team have combined for a current 10-game ATS winning streak with the Falcons still sitting @ 6-0 versus the number on the season. The Orange & Black have been favored by close to this number twice this season & lost both outright. Here's where we're going. Until the oddsmakers catch up to the Red & Black, we'll pile up the points as a dog against weaker defenses. Let's move on into Queen City's Paycor Stadium (missing that Riverfront name) to play the ATLANTA FALCONS (buying to + 10 1/2) as my 8 Star NFL Barking Out Loud Dogger! NOTES/POWER RANKINGS: It was one rare bird this past weekend with the mushes finally rearing their ugly head for a 3-0 sweep. With Atlanta winding up being a bad beat, head-scratching Matt Ryan providing another Pick-6 (his last), 14-point swing in a Colts' defeat & the absurd strip-fumble @ the 1 & last-second stoppage @ the 1 of Jacksonville, it was a highly-improbable that became probable NFL which I said usually happens 1-4 weekends out of the 18 of the regular season. I was taught that it's not always what you do after wins but how you respond off of losses. I say, "DEFEAT is the soil in which VICTORY blooms." With that, the important solid _________LINE has been drawn as we move into NFL Week 8. Let's take a peek @ my ever-changing NFL Power Rankings. 1) PHILADELPHIA EAGLES -- Larry Csonka (the ex-Syracuse grad actually played for the WFL entry Memphis Southmen for 1 1/2 years after the Dolphins along with RB Jim Kiick & WR Paul Warfield) & the rest of the 72' Super Bowl-era, undefeated Miami squad will have to wait to pop that champagne since Philly is still in disco "Doing The Hustle" mode heading into Week 8 @ a perfect 6-0 record & NFC-leading + 51 point differential. Their "D" gets to see the Steelers' with QB Kenny "Pick It" Pickett whose 5.5% interception rate is the highest among qualified QB's. Jalen Hruts has thrown twice as LESS INT's than Allen of the Bills. The Boys of "Fly Eagles Fly" fame decisively beat 2 winning teams in Dallas & Minnesota so remain my #1 thus far. 2) BUFFALO BILLS - This is the most-talented team in the NFL. However, they didn't take care of business versus Miami in a 21-19 loss in Week 3. QB Josh Allen leads the team in passing & miraculously in rushing after 7 weeks. Their home matchup in Week 15 with the Dolphins has already been circled on the locker room Big Board. 3) KANSAS CITY CHIEFS - We're waiting to actually see (in the next month) how 2-year man, the disgruntled & now ex-Giant out of Florida/WR/Return Specialist Kadarius Toney will be utilized by offensive guru & HC Andy "The Walrus" Reid. 4) DALLAS COWBOYS - While their defense remains elite (2nd in scoring-15 PPG, 4th in passing- yields 185 YPG & 6th in total "D"-gives up 305 YPG) & has carried them, their offense under Dak "Back In The Saddle" Prescott remains in a "Work In Progress" status until he's able to find a groove. 5) MINNESOTA VIKINGS - The success of this team remains in the hands of QB Kirk Cousins. How offensive-minded HC Kevin O'Connell & OC Wes Phillips draw things up (need a better balance of rushes per game) the rest of the way will dictate if they get crowned champs of the NFC North (last won in 2017 @ 13-3). 6) NEW YORK GIANTS - They were lucky but still move up the ladder a notch after their close your eyes-type win pushed their SU record to an amazing 5-1. What's better this year? Major consideration is due with a 2nd-ranked rushing offense (173 YPG) & a 4-way tie for 6th-best in points allowed (19 PPG) for a bend-don't-break type defense under 18-year vet DC Don "Wink" Martindale. 7) BALTIMORE RAVENS - It was a good start to Week 8 with a "W" over struggling Tampa Bay as QB Lamar Jackson finally gets better in the 4th quarter where his 56.8% passer rating moves in the right direction. If he stays smart with the football they win the AFC North. 8) CINCINNATI BENGALS - The success of this team (WR Ja' Marr Chase's hip injury didn't help) will lie in how effective the Bengals' O-Line could be in keeping QB Joe Burrow upright (sacked for a league-worst 24 times). 9) SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS - They remind me of the Bills from last season. I feel this is still an 11-6 winning the NFC West team that gets a badly-needed bye week to heal players in their MASH unit after their last duke-it-out affair with the Rams @ So-Fi this week. 10) NEW YORK JETS - Ok, stop the Jets bashing! Their offensive success could lie in how recently-acquired RB James Robinson (from Jacksonville) could boost an offense after rookie sensation RB Breece Hall was lost for the season due to a torn ACL. How good will their O'Line protect QB Zach Wilson after losing RG Alijah Vera-Tucker for the season to a triceps injury? The staple of this 5-2 SU squad has been the effectiveness of 10-year vet DC & play-caller Jeff Ulbrich in dialing up pressure. Their "D" willed them a "W" in Denver & rank tied for 10th in points allowed (20 PPG), 10th in total defense (314 YPG) & tied for 10th in rushing yards allowed (105 YPG). 11) TENNESSEE TITANS - They're somehow 4-2 SU but have lost every game ITS (In The Stats). This usually catches up to teams if radical adjustments aren't made. Their offensive production (275 YPG) only bests Carolina by 3 YPG for the NFL's worst. 12) MIAMI DOLPHINS - The success remains in how confident QB Tua Tagovailoa becomes as the weeks progress. The defense carried them to a 16-10 versus lowly Pittsburgh generating 3 TO's. Miami's here @ 4-3 SU but have been out-scored with a -18 point differential. Their in dire need of a rushing attack to survive as a playoff team. 13) SEATTLE SEAHAWKS -Yes, this 4-3 SU & NFC West-leading squad is doing it with solid play from QB Geno Smith (1,712 passing yards, 73.5% completions & a flashy 11/3 TD/INT ratio) & the surprising RB & rookie speedster out of Michigan State Kenneth Walker, III whose 4 TD's & 411 rushing yards has him up for Offensive Rookie of The Year honors. Pete Carroll's pass-first approach this season will be challenged versus the Giants since WR DK Metcalf has a knee injury & fellow wideout Tyler Lockett is nursing a hamstring injury. 14) LOS ANGELES RAMS - Winner by default to the last of 7 NFC teams here. Nevertheless, their season could be on the line this weekend if they can't split the season series with SF. A healthy Van Jefferson is key to them but a badly-needed ground game (rank 31st-71 YPG) is paramount if they want to make it back to the playoffs @ a chance to defend. The Eye Of The Tiger is OUT & expect some shaking up in the locker room after the shabbiest of weeks. Mike Handzelek's 2022-23 NFL Overall Record: 7-7 for a looking shabby 50%
 


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