Six weeks of NFL games are in the books, which means the season is one third of the way through the 2022-23 season. Week 7 adds an extra layer of intrigue with some prominent players set to re-take the field: including Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott, Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa. Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Deandre Hopkins, and New England Patriots quarterback Mac Jones.

While Week 7 doesn’t bring the hard-hitting matchups the league has to offer (which makes sense considering three teams with 5+ wins are on bye) there are still plenty of key games to watch.

On Thursday Night Football, both the New Orleans Saints and Arizona Cardinals will look to shake 2-4 starts to get back in to the thick of the NFC standings. The New York Giants will look to extend their hot start to 6-1 as they travel to face the Jacksonville Jaguars, and the New York Jets will also hit the road against a desperate, struggling 2-4 Denver Broncos team.

Elsewhere, the 3-2-1 Indianapolis Colts and 3-2 Tennessee Titans will duke it out for first place in the AFC South, the 3-3 Seattle Seahawks and 4-2 Los Angeles Chargers meet in an all-West Coast matchup and a surprisingly good one at that, and the San Francisco 49ers will host the Kansas City Chiefs in a Super Bowl 54 rematch.

Read on for my Week 7 Preview and Picks, and if you’d like to debate or discuss any picks, or want to follow for more weekly NFL content including Picks and Power Rankings, be sure to connect with Sak Sports Blog on Twitter or on Facebook!

Picks Record

Week 1: 7-8-1

Week 2: 8-8

Week 3: 9-7

Week 4: 11-5

Week 5: 12-4

Week 6: 6-8

Season Record: 53-40-1 (57%)

After a few consistent weeks of improvement, I tumbled below .500 in Week 5. Upsets by the Giants, Jets, Falcons, Seahawks and Steelers really threw me for a loop. I slightly regret picking the Bears and Browns, and as far as Chiefs-Bills, it’s hard to kick myself for picking Kansas City at home.

Thursday Night Football

New Orleans Saints (2-4) at Arizona Cardinals (2-4)

The return of Deandre Hopkins to the lineup should help lift the Arizona Cardinals over the New Orleans Saints at home, whether it’s Andy Dalton or Jameis Winston opposing Kyler Murray. Cardinals win 27-23

Sunday Day Games

Photo: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants (5-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars (2-4)

The New York Giants coming in as 3.0-point underdogs, even on the road, against a 2-4 Jacksonville Jaguars team baffles me. Daniel Jones and the Giants aren’t the type of team to run away with a game, but I think New York can control this game’s pace from start to finish and keep Trevor Lawrence’s offense in check. Giants win 27-23

Atlanta Falcons (3-3) at Cincinnati Bengals (3-3)

Marcus Mariota and an overachieving Atlanta Falcons squad take on Joe Burrow and the underachieving Cincinnati Bengals. The defending AFC Super Bowl representatives should take care of business at home to win their fourth game in five weeks. Bengals win 30-23

Detroit Lions (1-4) at Dallas Cowboys (4-2)

Dan Campbell’s Detroit Lions are gritty, but grit won’t be enough to take down the Dallas Cowboys in Dak Prescott’s return game. Cowboys win 33-20

Indianapolis Colts (3-2-1) at Tennessee Titans (3-2)

In the most consequential game of the week, the 3-2-1 Indianapolis Colts and the 3-2 Tennessee Titans will battle it out for first place in the AFC South. Matt Ryan and the Colts have been heating up, but Ryan Tannehill and the Titans are winners of three straight, and are coming off a bye week. Titans win 27-20

Green Bay Packers (3-3) at Washington Commanders (2-4)

After dropping back-to-back games to the Giants and Jets, the Green Bay Packers are desperate to get back in the win column. Against a lackluster Washington Commanders team that will be starting Taylor Heinickie instead of Carson Wentz, and Green Bay should roll to a road win. Packers win 24-16

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-3) at Carolina Panthers (1-5)

Just like the Packers, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are 3-3 and struggling to meet expectations with their future Hall of Fame quarterback at the helm. And again like Green Bay, the Buccaneers get an easy opponent, the easiest opponent in the league: the post-Matt Rhule, post-Robbie Anderson, no-Baker Mayfield Carolina Panthers. Buccaneers win 30-13

Cleveland Browns (2-4) at Baltimore Ravens (3-3)

Rounding out the redemption tour for the week, the 3-3 Baltimore Ravens have dropped three one-score games this season. While Jacoby Brissett and the Cleveland Browns are capable of a good game, I don’t think Lamar Jackson and the offense will let the Browns even sniff a lead on Sunday. Ravens win 34-17

New York Jets (4-2) at Denver Broncos (2-4)

The Denver Broncos are favored by a point at home, but it feels like Denver ending their three-game skid would be the bigger upset. I’m actually going with the Broncos, because while Zach Wilson and the New York Jets have played well over the last three weeks, I think Denver’s defense will keep New York at bay. Get ready for another ugly Broncos game with a weird score. Broncos win 19-15

Houston Texans (1-3-1) at Las Vegas Raiders (1-4)

Both teams have just one win this season, and the Houston Texans’ record is technically better with a tie to boot. But despite a 1-4 record, the Las Vegas Raiders are much more talented, and should win this game at home with ease to begin the process of recovering from their slow start. Raiders win 33-17

Seattle Seahawks (3-3) at Los Angeles Chargers (4-2)

Geno Smith and the Seattle Seahawks are enjoying an unlikely 3-3 start to the season that has them tied for first place in the NFC West through six weeks. While the Los Angeles Chargers aren’t quite the powerhouse I expected them to be, Justin Herbert and company should be able to navigate the team to a win: even if Seattle gives the Los Angeles defense a run for their money. Chargers win 34-26

Sak Sports Blog Game of the Week: Kansas City Chiefs (4-2) at San Francisco 49ers (3-3)

The picking for Week 7’s highlight game were a little slim: especially with the 5-1 Bills, 5-1 Vikings, and 6-0 Eagles all taking the week off. But a Super Bowl 54 rematch where the two teams combine for seven wins (tied for the most in Week 7) takes the cake. Jimmy Garoppolo and the San Francisco 49ers will look to both bounce back from last week’s embarrassing loss to the Falcons as well as avenge, if even slightly, their loss to Kansas City on the biggest stage a few seasons ago.

While this is my pick for Game of the Week, which implies a good, close game, I’m fairly certain Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs can beat the 49ers if the Falcons can. The game is in San Francisco, where the 49ers are 2-0, but I don’t think the road environment will rattle the Chiefs. If the score stays close, it will be because of San Francisco’s defense. Chiefs win 27-22

THROWBACK ARTICLE: Super Bowl 54 Prediction

Sunday Night Football

Pittsburgh Steelers (2-4) at Miami Dolphins (3-3)

While the Pittsburgh Steelers are coming off an unlikely win over the Buccaneers, I don’t see their good luck continuing in to Sunday night. Tua Tagovailoa should be back, and Pittsburgh’s defense will have nightmares in anticipation of defending Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle. Dolphins win 31-17

Monday Night Football

Chicago Bears (2-4) at New England Patriots (3-3)

After scoring just seven points last Thursday night against the Commanders, I have more fingers on my right hand than teams I would pick Justin Fields and the Chicago Bears to beat. I don’t think the New England Patriots will score quite as many points as their previous two big wins, but Bill Belichick should be able to coach this one home. Patriots win 24-17

Teams on Bye

Buffalo Bills (5-1), Los Angeles Rams (3-3), Minnesota Vikings (5-1), Philadelphia Eagles (6-0)




More By Me

Header Photo Credits: Tom Pennington/Getty Images,, Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports.

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