Ireland's George Dockrell puts his NFL knowledge to the test

The Ireland spin bowler calls this weekend’s NFL games.

Howz- George-Dockrell's-NFL-knowledge-at!
Howz- George-Dockrell's-NFL-knowledge-at!
Image: Presseye/William Cherry/INPHO

RIGHT NOW, THINGS couldn’t be going much better for George Dockrell.

He’s just after taking his 200th wicket for Ireland, helping the side to back-to-back InterContinental Cup wins over the UAE and Namibia as their bid for Test status continues.

Unfortunately for the 23-year old he’s a Cleveland Browns fan, they first we’ve ever encountered ‘in real life.’

As the NFL enters week eight, here’s his picks:

Miami Dolphins @ New England Patriots

George Dockrell: Miami have done well the last couple of weeks but I can’t look past Brady and the Patriots who are undefeated this year.

It should be a good divisional battle but I’m tipping the Super Bowl champs New England to win at home.

The42: The Dolphins have look really good since parting ways with head coach Joe Philbin but it’s worth remembering their two wins have come against Tennessee and Houston teams that have a combined 3-10 record.

The Patriots have won their last five Thursday Night Games and, though they played their worst game of the season against the Jets last Sunday, they still came out on top and we think New England will do the same this week.

Detroit Lions @ Kansas City Chiefs  (London)

Britain Lions Football The Lions training in London. Source: AP/Press Association Images

GD: Detroit have the experience of playing in London having won at Wembley last year.

The Chiefs are playing better than at the start of the season but I don’t see their offence doing enough to get the win so I’m backing the Lions.

The42: Given their combined record of 3-11, this is likely to be a battle of the least worst teams and, once again, London is served the worst of the NFL.

That said, the last time the Lions played Wembley, they produced a brilliant comeback and could do with something like that this weekend to reignite a season that has been a struggle for them so far.

The Chiefs have been one of the most disappointing teams in the league but they’ll have just enough to get the win here.

Cincinnati Bengals @ Pittsburgh Steelers

GD: The Bengals are undefeated also this year and the Andy Dalton/ Tyler Eifert combo has been working well.

It will be a tight divisional battle but I think Dalton and his TE will combine to take the Bengals to 7-0.

The42: The Bengals have been great this season. Just think about how strangely that sentence reads for a minute but George is right about Dalton and Eifert and it’s little surprise he has been christened ‘Baby Gronk’.

As of this moment, we don’t know if Ben Roethlisberger is playing. If he does, home advantage wins this for the Steelers. If he doesn’t, the Bengals will continue on their winning ways.

We think Mike Tomlin takes the risk and plays Big Ben — his team can’t afford to fall any further behind in division — so our money is on Pittsburgh.

New York Jets @ Oakand Raiders

Raiders Chargers Football Amari Cooper torched the Chargers last week. Source: Denis Poroy/AP/Press Association Images

GD: Both teams have a bit of momentum this season after a number of disappointing years for the franchises.

If the Jets run the ball well again they can win this match-up.

However, if Derek Carr’s offensive line protects him as well this week as they have done all year, I think he’ll make it two wins in a row so I’m going with the Raiders at home on this one.

The42: Derek Carr is a season and a half into his NFL career and has only taken 32 sacks. His brother David had 31 in his first five games in 2002 so the offensive line is key for the Raiders.

As a long-suffering Raiders fan, it’s exciting to see what they’re doing this season and the match-up between Revis Island and Amari Cooper will be fascinating.

The Jets are probably heading to the playoffs but that could all change if the Raiders cause an upset. We can see them falling just short so Gang Green for us.

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Green Bay Packers @ Denver Broncos

GD: This will be the game of the week with both teams coming into it at 6-0 and having just had a week off.

It’s tough to look past the Broncos at home. However with Peyton Manning having thrown 10 interceptions and only seven touchdowns this season, I think Aaron Rodgers, who has 15 TDs and only two INTs, and the Packers will dominate this game.

The42: The Broncos can’t keep winning games the way they are and someone is going to punish their offence for scoring just 19 points per game this year, especially against a team as high-powered as Green Bay.

Indeed, Denver rank dead last in offence according to Football Outsiders and are equally poor running the ball as they are trying to throw it.

Before the season started many would have seen this game as a Super Bowl preview but only the Packers look like they’ll be contenders come January and they’ll end Denver’s undefeated streak this weekend.

Indianapolis Colts @ Carolina Panthers

Eagles Panthers Football Cam Newton has been very impressive this season. Source: AP/Press Association Images

DG: Carolina are the final undefeated team to play in Monday Night Football and face the Colts who were nearly shutout last week before coming back late in the game.

Cam Newton’s injuries are behind him and he’s a great quarterback to watch, both when he’s passing and running the ball himself.

I think he’ll be too much for the Colts to handle and I can’t see Andrew Lucks offence outscoring Carolina.

The42: We’re slowly starting to believe this Carolina team is the real deal even if it makes no sense given the fact that both their offence and defence are, on paper at least, worse than last year.

That just goes to show you should never play football on paper.

The Colts have been the most disappointing team in football with Andrew Luck looking a shadow of the first overall pick we’ve come to expect. The Panthers move to 7-0 on Monday.

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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