Week 9 Predictions
Last week I went 10-4 after getting burned by Tampa Bay and their big win in Minnesota and getting a little ambitious on some of my picks from the early part of the day. The teams on bye are the New England Patriots, New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers and the St. Louis Rams.
Thursday, 11/1 – 8:20 pm ET
Kansas City Chiefs 1-6 @ San Diego Chargers 3-4
Prediction: San Diego Chargers
I don’t think this will be a “pretty” game. Neither team is very good and both teams are coming off bad losses. San Diego lost to Cleveland last week and Kansas City lost to Oakland. For this week, I’ll go with San Diego. I think the difference here is the offenses. San Diego’s isn’t what they used to be, but it should be enough. San Diego’s 2nd-ranked rush defense should be enough to slow down Chiefs RB, Jamaal Charles, who is really all Kansas City’s offense has to offer.
Sunday, 11/4 – 1:00 pm ET
Arizona Cardinals 4-4 @ Green Bay Packers 5-3
Prediction: Green Bay Packers
I think Arizona is reeling. Their defense was exploited by San Francisco’s offense on Monday night and Green Bay’s is more than capable of doing the same. Arizona’s offense is awful right now thanks in large part to their porous offensive line. They have no run game and continue to have QB issues because whoever is back there is under constant pressure. This is also in Green Bay. Another reason to like the Packers.
Detroit Lions 3-4 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 1-6
Prediction: Detroit Lions
Detroit has the talent to win this game especially with Jaguars RB, Maurice Jones-Drew, still injured. Jacksonville sports the 23rd-ranked passing offense and we all know Detroit specializes in the pass. I’ll take Detroit. They looked like they finally were starting to get their offense going last week against Seattle.
Chicago Bears 6-1 @ Tennessee Titans 3-5
Prediction: Chicago Bears
Chicago hasn’t looked incredibly sharp for a 6-1 team, but they still continue to win. The Bears defense is scoring a ridiculous amount of points… as a defense and the offense is very capable of putting up points on Tennessee’s 30th-ranked defense.
Denver Broncos 4-3 @ Cincinnati Bengals 3-4
Prediction: Denver Broncos
Cincinnati should play angry this week after dropping a couple games they shouldn’t have heading into last weeks bye. That said, QB Peyton Manning is 7-0 against the Bengals in his career. In those games, he has thrown 17 touchdown passes, only three interceptions and currently sports a 107 passer rating against Cincy. Cincinnati has home field, but it isn’t enough for a Broncos team, finally reaching a relatively easy part of their schedule.
Carolina Panthers 1-6 @ Washington Redskins 3-5
Prediction: Washington Redskins
By now, I’m sure you have seen some story about how Panthers QB, Cam Newton, was all the rage last season and this year it is Redskins, Robert Griffin III, while Newton struggles. That will be the focus of this game as well, but let’s clear a couple things up. First, Newton has eerily similar numbers to last season excluding his rookie success running the ball and second, this game should be high-scoring thanks to poor defensive play. I like RG3 to win that duel. I will say, games like this that are supposed to be offensive fireworks oftentimes seem to end up being surprisingly low scoring affairs.
Baltimore Ravens 5-2 @ Cleveland Browns 2-6
Prediction: Baltimore Ravens
I do believe Cleveland is improving. I also believe Cleveland’s defense has been stellar in the past couple weeks and with CB Joe Haden, they are a very, very formidable defense. I don’t believe it is enough to beat an angry Baltimore team who just got smacked around by Houston last week. Cleveland is too inconsistent on offense to trust in this one.
Miami Dolphins 4-3 @ Indianapolis Colts 4-3
Prediction: Miami Dolphins
Miami impressed me with their win over the Jets last week. Sure, New York isn’t anything special, but a 30-9 smackdown can’t be ignored. I’m taking Miami due to momentum and their run game, which should be able to exploit the 27th-ranked rush defense. Keep an eye on Colts QB, Andrew Luck though. Luck has played very well this year at home.
Buffalo Bills 3-4 @ Houston Texans 6-1
Prediction: Houston Texans
I’ll keep this quick. Buffalo cannot stop anyone… at all… and Buffalo’s offense isn’t nearly enough to cover for it. Houston’s offense is unstoppable (for lower caliber teams) and their defense is one of the top in the league (3rd-ranked in total yards allowed per game – 283.0). It’s in Houston. No contest.
Sunday, 11/4 – 4:05 pm ET
Minnesota Vikings 5-3 @ Seattle Seahawks 4-4
Prediction: Seattle Seahawks
Seattle has a pretty good thing going on right now. They have a top defense, ranked 5th in yards allowed per game (312.0), and they play at one of, if not the most, difficult place to play in the league. This game is in Seattle. Honestly, I believe Minnesota is a very good team and could realistically push for the playoffs, but this week I don’t see it happening. Playing Seattle at home is the equivalent of playing a Super Bowl contender.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 3-4 @ Oakland Raiders 3-4
Prediction: Oakland Raiders
I really wanted to avoid choosing Oakland here because they aren’t exactly a reliable pick, but I’m taking them. First of all, Tampa Bay is playing well and I think this week is more a fluke as opposed to being outmatched. I just think Tampa Bay’s passing defense could be their downfall (31st-ranked). I also think the long trip Tampa Bay needs to make to Oakland can’t be overlooked.
Sunday, 11/4 – 4:25 pm ET
Pittsburgh Steelers 4-3 @ New York Giants 6-2
Prediction: New York Giants
Pittsburgh has played well enough as of late, but I think that ends against the Giants. New York has the pass rushers to get to QB Ben Roethlisberger and, while I expect a turnover or two from Giants QB, Eli Manning, I also think he does enough to win.
Sunday, 11/4 – 8:20 pm ET
Dallas Cowboys 3-4 @ Atlanta Falcons 7-0
Prediction: Dallas Cowboys
I’m not the only one thinking this could happen. I really like Atlanta as a team, but I don’t look at them and think they can realistically go undefeated. They have question marks on defense and haven’t been consistently dominant. Dallas is just a really talented team who can’t seem to put it together when they need to. They have weapons in WRs Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and TE Jason Witten. The Dallas defense is 4th overall and 3rd against the pass. I just think Dallas somehow puts it all together this week… and then loses next week in a blowout cause that’s what Dallas does.
Monday, 11/5 – 8:30 pm ET
Philadelphia Eagles 3-4 @ New Orleans Saints 2-5
Prediction: New Orleans Saints
If there was ever a week for Philadelphia to get back on track offensively, it’s this week. The Saints defense is atrocious, ranked last in the league, and is on pace to give up the most yards ever allowed in a season. I still like the Saints though. They got beat badly in Denver, but the Saints always play better at home. Also, in a matchup between underachieving teams, I’ll take Saints QB, Drew Brees.