Week 5 of the 2017 NFL schedule will arrive Thursday evening in what is turning out to be one of the marquee matchups of the week when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers host the New England Patriots. New England has had a sluggish start, and a loss Thursday evening could put them below .500 on the season, which is something that hasn't happened often in the Bill Belichick - Tom Brady era.

Early woes something to worry about for Patriots?

Despite several key injuries on offense, the New England Patriots still look like they have the ability to return to the Super Bowl to defend their championship - on the offensive side of the ball.

On the defensive side, New England hasn't been able to slow down anyone so far in 2017. Heading to Tampa Bay this week is going to be a tough task for New England as they will face the 2-1 Buccaneers, who are playing well on both sides of the ball, especially on defense. Quarterback Jameis Winston is getting better each week, and on the heels of a big win against the New York Giants last weekend, Tampa Bay will have a chance to show the NFL world that they are for real Thursday evening.

Week 5 Marquee matchups

While Tampa Bay hosting New England is a huge early-season game for both sides, there are several other games that will also have an early effect on the conference standings. Front and center will be the 3-1 Carolina Panthers facing the 3-1 Detroit Lions.

Matt Stafford and Cam Newton will clash as the Panthers and Lions look to advance to 4-1 on the season and take a bit of control in the NFC Conference. If that isn’t good enough, the big late game of the day will feature the Green Bay Packers traveling to Big D to take on the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys haven’t lived up to their preseason hype so far in 2017.

A win against the Packers on Sunday would be a big boost of confidence for Dallas, but it won’t come easy. Nothing ever does when you have to face Aaron Rodgers.

Schedule, TV coverage and weekly picks

Last week the picks finished 3-2, bringing the year-to-date totals to 12-7 overall. Not bad, but not good either! Below is a look at the entire NFL schedule, current Las Vegas odds, TV networks that will be airing each game, and ATS predictions for Week 5.

Thursday, Oct. 5

  • New England Patriots (-6) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers -- 8:25 pm -- CBS (O/U 55)

Sunday, Oct. 8

  • Arizona Cardinals at Philadelphia Eagles (-6) -- 1:00 pm -- FOX (O/U 45)
  • Buffalo Bills at Cincinnati Bengals (-3) -- 1:00 pm -- CBS (O/U 38)
  • Carolina Panthers at Detroit Lions (-2.5) -- 1:00 pm -- FOX (O/U 44)
  • Jacksonville Jaguars at Pittsburgh Steelers (-8.5) -- 1:00 pm -- CBS (O/U 44)
  • L.A. Chargers at N.Y. Giants (-3) -- 1:00 pm -- CBS (O/U 44)
  • N.Y. Jets at Cleveland Browns (PK) -- 1:00 pm -- FOX (O/U 39)
  • San Francisco 49ers at Indianapolis Colts (-1) -- 1:00 pm -- FOX (O/U 43)
  • Tennessee Titans at Miami Dolphins -- 1:00 pm -- CBS (OFF)
  • Baltimore Ravens at Oakland Raiders (-2) -- 4:05 pm -- CBS (O/U 39)
  • Seattle Seahawks at L.A. Rams (-1) -- 4:05 pm -- CBS (O/U 47)
  • Green Bay Packers at Dallas Cowboys (-2.5) -- 4:25 pm -- FOX (O/U 52)
  • Kansas City Chiefs (-1.5) at Houston Texans -- 8:30 pm -- NBC (O/U 46)

Monday, Oct 9

  • Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears -- 8:30 pm -- ESPN (OFF)

NFL picks record

  • Last week 3-2
  • Year to date - 12-7

Picks -- NY Giants -3, Browns -1, Texans +1.5, LA Rams -1, Detroit Lions -2.5