Five hot teams that could go cold in NFL Week 10

A number of teams will enter NFL Week 10 with some momentum. In some cases, though, we can expect to see that momentum come to an end.

Who are those teams?

Who will win the battle of hot teams between the Dolphins and Chargers in San Diego? Will the Saints knock off the defending champions in the Superdome? Who will win the battle of the birds between the Eagles and Falcons?

Which five hot teams are vulnerable to some frostbite heading into NFL Week 10?

Miami Dolphins

Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers have averaged a shade under 34 points per game this season. At home, they’ve scored 34 a game. So, for the Dolphins to win this game, they’re probably going to need a good game from quarterback Ryan Tannehill.

That will certainly be an uphill battle.

Given San Diego’s offensive proficiency, Miami simply can’t rely on Tannehill to manage this game if it’s going to pull a tough road victory out. Tannehill has passed for more yards per game on the road this year, but everything else has been worse.

In general, the Dolphins have struggled on the road in 2016. The Fins sit at 0-3 away from Hard Rock Stadium, averaging less than 14 points a game.

Miami will fly into San Diego riding a three-game winning streak. But don’t expect that to get to four in Week 10.

Carolina Panthers

Greg Olsen, Cam Newton

At a glance, it may seem like the Panthers have righted the ship. Sure, Carolina is only 3-5, but it has won its last two games.

But can anyone really say that Cam Newton and company looked good against the Los Angeles Rams?

Over their previous five games, the Rams had surrendered an average of nearly 25 points. The Panthers managed only 13. It was a good enough effort to win in Week 9. In Week 10, however, Carolina doesn’t get to go against Case Keenum under center, executing a Jeff Fisher game plan.

The Kansas City Chiefs are on a four-game winning streak. In that time, Kansas City has averaged 25.5 points per game. Additionally, Alex Smith will be back in action. So, we can count on some offense from the Chiefs.

To beat Kansas City, the Panthers will need to score some points. Newton has been repeatedly abused this season. Even in Carolina’s wins, the offensive line has not protected the reigning MVP.

So, how are they going to hold up against a Dee Ford-led pass rush? Expect the Panthers to struggle against the Chiefs on Sunday.

Atlanta Falcons

In Atlanta, this would be a hard one to justify. The Philadelphia Eagles have won only one road game this season. In the City of Brotherly Love, however, their performance has been a different story.

Carson Wentz

The Eagles are not only 3-0 at home but have been completely dominant in those three games. Philly has outscored opponents 84-23 at home. Included in that was a 34-3 blowout win over the then healthy Pittsburgh Steelers and a 21-10 blowout of the Minnesota Vikings in which Minnesota was handed itsthey  first loss of the season.

The Falcons have certainly been impressive this year, but have been far from invincible. Prior to the current two-game winning streak, Atlanta had dropped two in a row. They also nearly lost at home to a Green Bay Packers team that has been flat all year.

If Desmond Trufant plays, he’ll be banged up. That will make life much easier on Carson Wentz. Also, the Philadelphia pass rush should do enough against the Falcons’ line to at least contain Matt Ryan.

This isn’t to say that Atlanta won’t do anything good. Ryan and Julio Jones will certainly make plays. But the Eagles’ defense is good enough to limit them. Additionally, Philadelphia’s running attack will help keep Ryan and Jones on the sideline.

The Falcons are certainly a good team but are quite vulnerable in this game.

Denver Broncos

Coming off of Sunday night’s loss to the Oakland Raiders, a case could be made that Denver is not a true “hot” team heading into a showdown in The Superdome against the New Orleans Saints.

But consider a few things.

  1. Prior to that loss, the Broncos had won two straight.
  2. The Raiders have made a lot of teams look bad.
  3. Loss or not, Denver is 6-3.
  4. Loss or not, the Broncos are the reigning Super Bowl champs.

They’re also quite vulnerable in Week 10.

The Saints — aided by a red hot Drew Brees — are rolling right now.

New Orleans has won two straight games and four of its last five. At home, the Saints are averaging 33 points per game. Denver has only hit that total once this year.

The Broncos do have a good defense, but it’s not the same impenetrable group that it was a season ago. Teams have had success running against Denver. Mark Ingram and Tim Hightower can take advantage of that. The Broncos will have to respect the running attack, thereby opening up the passing attack much more for Brees.

Denver’s best hope here relies on the fact that the Saints have a terrible defense. Even with that, it will be a tall task for Trevor Siemian to outduel Brees in the dome.

New York Giants

Odell Beckham Jr.

The Giants are on a three-game winning streak but have won the three games by a combined 16 points. So, without much imagination, this could just as easily be a three-game losing streak.

Now, New York does deserve credit for pulling these tough games out. What’s really hard to get past is that even in wins, the Giants have surrendered some good — or even great — games against opposing receivers.

None of those guys have the stature of A.J. Green.

Green is one of the NFL’s best receivers and we should expect him to be a difference maker in this game. Look for him to feast on the Giants’ secondary. The Bengals don’t have a great defense, but in a shootout it’ll be tough for Eli Manning to hang with Green and the rest of Cincinnati’s offense.