NFL predictions and picks for Week 8 from the experts at ESPN are now here, and it is going to be a crucial week of football for many teams. Nearly half of the season is now complete, and the playoff pictures in both conferences are taking shape. There are now seven teams with two or fewer wins, and all of them are in do-or-die situations this week.
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys – WINNER: Cowboys
In the most interesting game of the week, the Philadelphia Eagles will travel to Dallas to take on their hated rival — the Cowboys. With a record of 5-1, the Cowboys are in first place in the elite NFC East, but the Eagles are not far behind with a record of 4-2. Cowboys rookie quarterback Dak Prescott has arguably been one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL this season, and rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott has been unstoppable.
The Eagles also have an impressive rookie quarterback of their own in Carson Wentz, but the rest of the offense is inferior to what Dallas has. Wide receivers are failing to get separation, and running back Ryan Mathews has struggled to hold onto the football. The Eagles’ saving grace may be their defense, but it is unlikely to be enough against the red-hot Cowboys. This game will be close but expect Prescott and company to be too much for Jim Schwartz’s improved defense. Eight out of nine ESPN experts believe the Cowboys will win this game.
New England Patriots at Buffalo Bills – WINNER: Patriots
Despite Patriots quarterback Tom Brady missing the first four games this year, they still look like the top team in the league. Their 5-1 record is good for first place in the AFC East, and tight end Rob Gronkowski finally looks healthy. They have a positive point differential of 69 points, which is good for first in the NFL.
While the Bills have an impressive record of 4-3, they are going to struggle against the surging Patriots. The Bills best player, running back LeSean McCoy, is doubtful for Sunday’s game, and their offense is going to take a huge hit with him on the sidelines. Since it is a divisional game, it should be close, but the Patriots should have this one locked up by the early parts of the final quarter. Eight out of nine ESPN experts believe the Patriots will win this game.
Seattle Seahawks at New Orleans Saints – WINNER: Seahawks
Despite injuries to quarterback Russell Wilson, running back Thomas Rawls, and wide receiver Tyler Lockett, the Seahawks have looked like one of the best teams in the NFL this season. Even after a bizarre tie last week against the Arizona Cardinals, Seattle still looks like the favorite to win the NFC West. Tight end Jimmy Graham has finally found his place in the offense, and running back Christine Michael has filled in nicely for Rawls.
While the Saints offense looks better than ever, they are just not a good team this year. They are not technically finished with their record of 2-4, but they must win on Sunday against the superior Seahawks. It is unlikely to happen. Eight out of nine ESPN experts believe the Seahawks will win this game.
More ESPN NFL Picks for Week 8
- Bengals Over Redskins
- Chiefs Over Colts
- Raiders Over Buccaneers
- Texans Over Lions
- Jets Over Browns
- Cardinals Over Panthers
- Broncos Over Chargers
- Falcons Over Packers
- Vikings Over Bears
Baltimore, Los Angeles, Miami, NY Giants, Pittsburgh, San Francisco are all on their bye weeks.
[Featured Image by Dylan Buell/Getty Images]