NFL Predictions Week 9: Road Teams That Will Dominate on Sunday
Home-field advantage is real in the NFL, but obviously there are situations where talent and quality of play supersede geography. There are three such instances this week in the NFL.
Here's a look at three road teams that will have no problem winning away from home as well as a prediction for every game on the schedule.
Kansas City Chiefs
According to Chris Brown of BuffaloBills.com, Buffalo Bills quarterback Thad Lewis is doubtful for Sunday's game with injured ribs. If he doesn't play, the Bills would be forced to start rookie Jeff Tuel or recent signing Matt Flynn.
In either case, there are obvious issues under center for the team.
Playing against one of the best defenses in the NFL, the Bills need to have solid play at quarterback to win. If a banged-up Lewis, Tuel or Flynn are the choices, the chances Buffalo gets a quality effort from the position are slim.
The Chiefs have forced 20 turnovers this season. That's the second-highest total in the league behind the Seattle Seahawks. Look for the team to cause a few miscues on Sunday from the Bills' makeshift quarterback situation.
On the other side of the ball, stopping the run figures to be an issue for Buffalo. Jamaal Charles leads a Chiefs ground attack that is averaging 122 yards per game. Meanwhile, the Bills are ranked 26th in the league against the run.
What do you get when you mix a questionable quarterback situation with a faulty run defense? A 21-6 win for the Chiefs on the road.
New Orleans Saints
The New York Jets' defense looked strong before it was dismantled in Week 8 by the Cincinnati Bengals. Andy Dalton threw for 325 yards and five touchdowns.
Dalton and the Bengals had been hot before Thursday night's loss to the Miami Dolphins, but their passing attack is nothing compared to the one the Jets will face on Sunday.
Drew Brees is one of only four quarterbacks averaging 300 passing yards per game this season. He's thrown the ball 271 times and has only been picked off five times. That's an interception on 1.8 percent of his passes thrown. Only four quarterbacks who have started every game have a lower percentage.
The Jets will have a major issue slowing down Brees and the Saints' passing game.
New Orleans' defense isn't getting the credit it deserves either. The unit has caused 15 turnovers this season and Sporting Charts indicates that the offense has converted those takeaways into 48 points.
While Jets quarterback Geno Smith has had his moments, he's been inconsistent this season.
His quarterback ratings have ranged from 48.8 to 147.7. He's also thrown 13 interceptions to just eight touchdown passes. The Saints will pressure Smith into more mistakes and the offense will make the Jets pay.
New Orleans will win 28-10.
According to Rana Cash of Sporting News, Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub is healthy enough to play against the Colts, but head coach Gary Kubiak is sticking with Case Keenum at quarterback.
Keenum played well against the Chiefs in Week 7. He threw for 271 yards and a score, but was sacked five times. The 25-year-old rookie is certainly short on experience, but it won't help his cause if he continues to get less-than-stellar protection.
ESPN.com's Tania Ganguli reports that both of the Texans' feature running backs are hobbled. Without a balanced attack to help their inexperienced quarterback, the Texans could be in trouble.
What road team is the most likely to lose in Week 9?
Aside from the question marks at quarterback, the Texans' run defense has left a lot to be desired. The team is 28th in the NFL against the run. The team should expect to see a steady diet of Trent Richardson.
Much has been made of Richardson's struggles since joining the Colts five weeks ago. If there were ever a week for Richardson to break out in, it is this one.
Along with all the stats, the Colts are riding high from a confidence standpoint after handing the Denver Broncos their first loss in Week 7 and using the bye week to recuperate.
Having lost their last five games, the Texans are headed south. Both teams' trends will continue and the Colts will bounce the Texans 24-13.
Here's a look at predictions for the other games on the Week 9 schedule.
|Sunday, Nov. 3||Time (ET)||Location||Prediction|
|Kansas City at Buffalo||1 PM||Ralph Wilson Stadium||Kansas City|
|Minnesota at Dallas||1 PM||AT&T Stadium||Dallas|
|Tennessee at St. Louis||1 PM||Edward Jones Dome||Tennessee|
|New Orleans at NY Jets||1 PM||MetLife Stadium||New Orleans|
|San Diego at Washington||1 PM||FedEx Field||San Diego|
|Atlanta at Carolina||1 PM||Bank of America Stadium||Carolina|
|Philadelphia at Oakland||4:05 PM||O.co Coliseum||Oakland|
|Tampa Bay at Seattle||4:05 PM||CenturyLink Field||Seattle|
|Baltimore at Cleveland||4:25 PM||FirstEnergy Stadium||Baltimore|
|Pittsburgh at New England||4:25 PM||Gillette Stadium||New England|
|Indianapolis at Houston||8:30 PM||Reliant Stadium||Indianapolis|
|Monday, Nov. 4||Time (ET)||Location|
|Chicago at Green Bay||8:30 PM||Lambeau Field||Green Bay|
Brian Mazique's Week 9 Predictions
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