NFL Week 9 Predictions: Picks for Every Game
Week 9 has another good slate of games. The two best games of the weekend are the New York Jets in Buffalo to take on the Bills, and the New York Giants traveling to Foxboro to take on the New England Patriots.
The teams on the bye this week include the Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings, Carolina Panthers and Jacksonville Jaguars.
Check out more B/R picks here.
New York Jets vs. Buffalo Bills
This is potentially a matchup for first place in the AFC East. The Bills are currently tied atop the division with the Patriots. The Jets are a game back. A Jets win and a Patriots loss against the Giants would make a three-way tie for the lead.
This is a big game for Mark Sanchez. The Bills are not very good against the pass, giving up 265.9 yards per game. Sanchez can really get the critics off his back with a good performance in this one.
This is also a big game for Ryan Fitzpatrick. He will have a chance to earn the big contract he signed against the league's seventh-ranked pass defense.
Jets 24 Bills 20
Seattle Seahawks vs. Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys desperately need to win this game. They are coming off an embarrassing loss to the Eagles and are playing a bad football team at home.
Tony Romo will look to bounce back against the Seahawks pass defense that ranks 18th in the league. Look for Miles Austin and Dez Bryant to have big games in this one.
The Seahawks will try to give the Cowboys a heavy dose of Marshawn Lynch to shorten the game, but it will not be enough to keep this one close.
Cowboys 35 Seahawks 10
Atlanta Falcons vs. Indianapolis Colts
This game will be over by halftime.
The Falcons look like they are finally becoming the team they were expected to be when the season started. They also get Julio Jones back from a hamstring injury for this game coming off the bye.
The Colts look like a team that is going to make their bid to become the second 0-16 team in the history of the NFL. Indianapolis is 22nd or worse in points scored, total yards, rushing yards, passing yards, points allowed, total yards allowed, rushing yards allowed and passing yards allowed.
Falcons 38 Colts 7
Miami Dolphins vs. Kansas City Chiefs
There is a good chance the Chiefs will suffer a little bit of a hangover from their overtime win against the Chargers in this one. That will be enough to keep the game close for the first half.
These two teams actually look very similar on paper. The Dolphins are not terrible against the run, so Matt Cassel will have to make some throws for the Chiefs to win this one.
Kansas City is not very good on defense, but that will not matter because the Dolphins are terrible.
Chiefs 24 Dolphins 17
Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. New Orleans Saints
The Buccaneers got their biggest win of the season against the Saints in Week 6. It will be tough for them to pull that off twice in the same season.
New Orleans will have something to prove in this one after losing to the Rams on the road last week. They should be able to take advantage of a Bucs defense that is giving up 267.7 yards per game.
For Tampa it all comes down to the performance of Josh Freeman. They win when he is good and lose when he is bad.
Saints 28 Buccaneers 20
San Francisco 49ers vs. Washington Redskins
The 49ers are going to have a letdown game at some point this season, but it will not be this week.
The Redskins were shut out by the Bills in Week 8, and the Bills really are not good on defense. The 49ers are very good on defense, so it is tough to envision John Beck and the Redskins getting anything done this week.
Washington has trouble against the run. Frank Gore should run wild on Sunday against the league's 21st-ranked rush defense.
49ers 24 Redskins 6
Cleveland Browns vs. Houston Texans
The Texans passed a big test with their win last week against the Jaguars. They never have a problem winning the game that no one thinks they will win; it has been the game they are favored heavily in that has historically been their problem.
They face a similar situation this week at home against the Browns. Cleveland has been a disappointment this season, and it is hard to see them doing much against a Houston defense that is much improved this season.
The Texans should get Andre Johnson back this week. Their offense will be pretty lethal with AJ and an Arian Foster who has returned to his 2010 form.
Texans 34 Browns 13
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Tennessee Titans
The Bengals defense has been really good so far this season. They have not faced many good offenses so far, and that will not change on Sunday. The Titans lost Kenny Britt, and Chris Johnson looks like a shell of his former self. Their offense is not exactly setting the world on fire.
Cedric Benson returns from his one-game suspension in this one. He should be able to find some room to run against the Titans 27th-ranked run defense.
Bengals 20 Titans 10
Denver Broncos vs. Oakland Raiders
The biggest thing to watch in this game is the status of Darren McFadden's foot. He got a week to rest it with the Raiders on a bye last week, but he did not practice Tuesday. Michael Bush will start if McFadden cannot go.
It will also be interesting to see how much progress Carson Palmer has made with the week off. He was terrible in his debut.
The most disappointing thing about Tim Tebow's debacle on Sunday is that he did not make another impassioned speech like the one after he lost to Ole Miss in college. I would pick the Broncos in this one had he done that, or not.
Raiders 17 Broncos 10
New York Giants vs. New England Patriots
This is the non-prime-time game of the weekend. Eli Manning said before the season that he considers himself in the same class as Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers. He has the chance to prove that in Foxboro on Sunday.
It is a good matchup for him because New England has been terrible against the pass. In fact, the Patriots defense is dead last in the league against the pass.
The Patriots will look to take advantage of the Giants rush defense that gives up more than 130 yards per game. The Pats offense will always run through Tom Brady, but it would be smart to feed BenJarvus Green-Ellis the ball in this one to keep Manning off the field.
Giants 38 Patriots 31
St. Louis Rams vs. Arizona Cardinals
This is not the game of the weekend.
Look for Beanie Wells to have a ton of carries in this one. Part of that is because the Rams are so bad against the run, and part of it is because Kevin Kolb is banged up and not playing well.
The Rams will look to attack the Arizona pass defense that is ranked 30th in the league. Brandon Lloyd should have a big day regardless of who plays quarterback for St. Louis.
Cardinals 24 Rams 20
Green Bay Packers vs. San Diego Chargers
This game is a good test for the Packers. They are traveling to California to take on a San Diego team that lost a heartbreaker on Monday night.
The only way for the Chargers to win this game is for Philip Rivers to get back on track. He currently leads all starting quarterbacks in turnovers. That is not good against a Green Bay defense that is built on forcing turnovers and turning them into points.
This contest will be a test for Aaron Rodgers because the San Diego defense is fourth in the NFL against the pass. Of course, they have not faced a quarterback as good as Aaron Rodgers yet this season.
Packers 27 Chargers 20
Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
This is a game the Steelers have had circled on their calendars since the Ravens destroyed them in Baltimore back in Week 1.
A lot has changed since that game. The Steelers are now playing like one of the best teams in the league, and the Ravens are struggling.
The Ravens defense is still outstanding, but their offense has really struggled the last couple of weeks. The Pittsburgh defense will give them fits on Sunday.
Steelers 17 Ravens 10
Chicago Bears vs. Philadelphia Eagles
This is a big game for the Eagles. One more loss could end their hopes at making the playoffs this season.
They should be able to move the ball against a Chicago defense that is not very good. They are 28th against the pass and 12th against the run.
The Bears and Matt Forte should be able to take advantage of the Eagles defense that ranks 19th against the run.
This will be a high-scoring game that will be won by the legs of Michael Vick in the fourth quarter.
Eagles 30 Bears 24