Happy Wednesday, folks. John Breech is a big believer that the Bengals are finally back after Joe Burrow's rebound against the Cardinals, so he's taking the day to celebrate. In the meantime, you've got me, Cody Benjamin, to deliver all the latest.
This is the Pick Six newsletter. Now let's get to it. (And please, do yourself a favor and make sure you're signed up to receive this newsletter every day! You don't want to miss our daily offerings of everything you need to know around the NFL.)
We've got Week 6 predictions, some buzz on Bill Belichick's future, new quarterback rankings and much more:
- Today's show: Debating Prisco's latest power rankings
Pete Prisco, Ryan Wilson and John Breech joined Will Brinson on the latest "Pick Six NFL Podcast" to debate Prisco's latest power rankings, arguing which teams are contenders (and pretenders). Some highlights:
- Prisco admits he doesn't trust Dak Prescott right now -- "Something's inside his head in big games" -- but isn't worried about the Cowboys as a whole: "They're not bad; they just had a bad night against a really good team."
- Brinson believes the Lions are one of a select few teams with legit title aspirations: "I think if you put them in a different uniform, people are giving them more credit as a Super Bowl contender."
- Why did the Steelers drop in the rankings after beating the Ravens? "It was an accidental win," Prisco said, arguing Pittsburgh is always tough in the AFC North but doesn't deserve real consideration as a turnaround candidate.
Catch the full episode (and subscribe for all kinds of daily NFL talk) right here.
2. Prisco's Picks: Buccaneers halt Lions, Browns scare 49ers
Pete Prisco is 48-30 in straight-up predictions this year. Now he's back with. Here's a sampling:
- Cowboys 30, Chargers 26: The Chargers are coming off a bye, while the Cowboys are coming off a disaster. Edge to the Chargers. Still, even after the Dallas defense had big issues with the 49ers offense, I think it can regroup here. Dak Prescott will also get his offense going. He has to at some point. The Chargers have defensive issues if you block them up front.
- Buccaneers 23, Lions 21: This is an enormous game for both teams. The Lions are 4-1 after dominating the Panthers last week, while the 3-1 Bucs are coming off a bye. Baker Mayfield is playing well, but the Lions defense is stout. This will be close, but the Bucs will find a way to win it late as Mayfield takes them to a late-game field goal for the triumph.
- 49ers 26, Browns 23: This is one of those be-careful games in the NFL. The 49ers are the best team, but they put a lot in the Dallas game last week and the Browns are coming off a bye. If Cleveland has quarterback Deshaun Watson back here to face that vaunted 49ers defense, it will hang around. If not, P.J. Walker will have a tough go. I say Watson plays and it's close.
3. Robert Kraft open to firing Bill Belichick if Patriots' slide continues
Bill Belichick has been so good for so long -- widely considered the greatest NFL coach of all time -- that many figure he'll get to go out on his own terms. But that's not how Patriots owner Robert Kraft views it, Tom Brady's departure in 2020, and they're coming off back-to-back blowout losses during a 1-4 start., which reported this week that an increasingly frustrated Kraft is open to dismissing Belichick if New England's struggles keep mounting. The Pats are just 25-26, including playoffs, since
4. Colts' Anthony Richardson to IR; rookie QB out at least four weeks
Injuries have plagued the first-rounder since Week 1, with Richardson previously battling a concussion and leg injury. Now the speedy signal-caller will be Gardner Minshew will take over after previously guiding an upset of the Ravens in Week 3., going to injured reserve with a Grade 3 AC joint sprain. While Richardson has been more erratic through the air, his loss will sap Indy of a dynamic scrambler, as he led the team with four rushing scores. Backup
5. QB Power Rankings: 49ers' Brock Purdy enters top five
Every week, we rank all 32 starting signal-callers according to current status, telling the story of QBs' respective leaps and tumbles throughout 2023. Here's a look at some of this week's notable movers:
Why Purdy in the top five? With each week, he further sheds the notion his rookie campaign was a fluke with instinctual pocket movement and pretty touch. Through 10 career starts, he's thrown 22 TDs and just four picks. He's truly been Mr. Reliable.
Check out the full 1-32 pecking order.
Sean Payton insists Denver's talent (or lack thereof) is not for sale despite a 1-4 start, but Bryan DeArdo has the Broncos as one of five teams whoahead of the Oct. 31 in-season trade deadline. He argues that's partly because they do have some valuable trade chips if they finally admit it's time to look past 2023:
Wideouts Jerry Jeudy and Courtland Sutton have both been the subject of previous trade rumors. (But) Jeudy and Sutton aren't the only players the Broncos could decide to trade. Linebacker Josey Jewell is a trade candidate given that he is playing on an expiring contract. Safety Justin Simmons' expensive salary could result in the team parting ways with him. The Broncos (could also) get the most value in a trade including 23-year-old cornerback Patrick Surtain II, an All-Pro last season.