The NFL season reaches its midway point this weekend, and CBS has an intriguing slate of games featuring a mix of contenders, hopefuls, and rebuilding teams on the docket. With the trade deadline just a few days away now, we may see a few teams switch within those tiers.
Two teams that appear to be in that contending mode meet in Carolina this weekend, as the Panthers, fresh off a comeback victory over the Philadelphia Eagles, face the Baltimore Ravens and their stingy defense.
In Pittsburgh, meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Steelers are hoping to continue to round into form, as they meet the AFC North-rival Browns for the second time this season.
And in Kansas City, arguably the league’s best team faces one of the few teams to give them trouble this season in the Denver Broncos.
As the weekend and another Sunday of football near, we caught up with CBS Baltimore Sports Director Mark Viviano to get his thoughts on the matchups and who he thinks will come out on top. (All times Eastern.)
Baltimore Ravens @ Carolina Panthers, 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Baltimore [is] coming off of a tough defeat, they failed to make it to overtime against the Saints because of a missed extra point by Justin Tucker. The Ravens also gave up 17 points in the fourth quarter of that game. Meanwhile, their opponent, Carolina, scored 21 in the fourth quarter in their win at Philadelphia. What does that mean? Week-to-week it doesn’t matter. I think the Ravens bounce back from this one and pick up a win at Carolina. Tough game to call though. Ravens win.
Cleveland Browns @ Pittsburgh Steelers, 1:00 p.m. (CBS)
Cleveland is a better team than [in] years past. The Ravens know that, they lost to them in overtime. But, Pittsburgh is coming off a bye, Pittsburgh is at home. I’m going with the Steelers in this one.
Green Bay Packers @ Los Angeles Rams, 4:25 p.m. (FOX)
The unbeaten Rams will probably lose a game at some point, but I don’t see them losing to the Packers this weekend. Packers win.
New Orleans Saints @ Minnesota Vikings, 8:25 p.m. (NBC)
The big rematch, as the Saints play at Minnesota. I like the Vikings in this one, and that may be a little bit of an upset pick in some people’s minds. But, I think with their defense, they can get it done against Drew Brees and the Saints. Vikings win.