NFL Betting Predictions: 5 Picks for Week 9

Steven SlivkaCorrespondent IIINovember 1, 2012

NFL Betting Predictions: 5 Picks for Week 9

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    As the midway point of the NFL season passes, the good teams will start to separate themselves from the bad and playoff pictures should begin to take shape within the next month.

    With that being said, there's still money to be made this week. The magic number "3" is being used in several games this week, which makes some of the bets that much more difficult.

    After the success I had in Week 8, I'm hoping Lady Luck will once again be on my side in Week 9. Let's take a look at five picks for this week.

    Last Week: 4-1

Minnesota Vikings at Seattle Seahawks (under 38.5)

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    The Seattle Seahawks are coming off two tough road losses, but are returning home where they have been stellar all season long.

    The Minnesota Vikings are coming off an ugly Thursday night loss to Tampa Bay where they were held in check all night long.

    The Seahawks are only allowing 14 points per game at CenturyLink Field this season, and the Vikings offense just isn't very good.

    Minnesota may be 5-3, but the offense hasn't been pulling its weight. In Week 4, the Vikings beat the Detroit Lions 20-13 but failed to score an offensive touchdown. Seattle's defense will not allow that to happen.

    If the Seahawks held the Green Bay Packers to just 14 points, do we really expect the Vikings to light up the scoreboard?

Carolina Panthers (+3.5) at Washington Redskins

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    Ever since Robert Griffin III took the world by storm in Week 1, the public has fallen in love with him and the exciting Washington Redskins.

    Unfortunately, the sensational rookie had to face the Pittsburgh Steelers last week and got exposed.

    Then again, it didn't help that all of his receivers were dropping passes left and right.

    The Carolina Panthers on the other hand are coming off a heart-breaking loss in Chicago where they dominated the Bears the entire game.

    The Panthers have only lost their last four games by a combined 12, and though their record doesn't reflect it, the team is getting better.

    Combine the physical beating Washington took last week with the consistently improving Carolina offense and you've got yourself an underdog cover.

Pittsburgh Steelers (+3.5) at New York Giants

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    Last week the Pittsburgh Steelers actually looked like the Pittsburgh Steelers. They played tough, physical defense and made Robert Griffin III look like an actual rookie quarterback.

    The New York Giants on the other hand struggled offensively against the Dallas Cowboys despite scoring 29 points.

    The Giants have struggled in every home game this season and Pittsburgh will be their toughest home test thus far. With the devastation of Hurricane Sandy ravaging across the New York/New Jersey area, it makes it tougher for the Giants to focus solely on football.

    While the Giants seem to be running away with their division, the Steelers are looking to pick up steam in theirs. The Steelers come into this game ranked No. 1 against the pass this season and will give Eli Manning and his wide receivers trouble all day.

Chicago Bears (-3.5) at Tennessee Titans

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    It took the Chicago Bears a full 60 minutes to beat the Carolina Panthers last week, but they left with the win. On the other hand, the Tennessee Titans only managed 13 points against the Indianapolis Colts.

    The Bears have had their struggles offensively, but this is the week they get out of that funk.

    Tennessee is giving up nearly 30 points a game at home this season. They will also have a difficult time trying to get anything going offensively against the stingy Chicago defense.

    The Bears have only given up 56 points in their last five games and are scoring more defensive touchdowns than most teams are scoring offensive touchdowns.

    After a sloppy performance last week, the Bears will look to make a statement this week against the Titans, as they prepare to face the Houston Texans next Sunday night.

Baltimore Ravens (-3.5) at Cleveland Browns

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    After a much-needed bye, the Baltimore Ravens take on a team they've beaten nine consecutive times. Even if you're not the kind of bettor to pay close attention to trends like that, it's got to convince you at least a little bit.

    Though the Cleveland Browns put up a solid defensive performance against the San Diego Chargers last week, they got a little help from Mother Nature.

    They also got some help from Robert Meachem, who dropped an easy touchdown that would've given the Chargers the lead.

    And unless they're playing the Cincinnati Bengals, the Browns have been horrible at home. Even with their 34-point performance against the Bengals in Week 6, the Browns are still averaging less than 18 points per game at home.

    Baltimore has had an extra week to get healthy and prepare for this matchup. With the Pittsburgh Steelers picking up steam in the AFC North, the Ravens must get the easy wins while they can.