NFL Week 9 Picks

The Giants are 1-0 in their last three Sundays thanks to Thursday Night Football and Monday Night Football and that record will stay intact through this Sunday as well with the Giants’ bye this week. What I’m trying to say is that this Sunday will mark a month of non-depressing Sundays thanks to the Giants.

And like the New York Football Giants season, which my picks season has mirrored this season, I have recorded two over-.500 weeks the last two weeks for my first two over-.500 weeks of the season. But unlike the Giants, I don’t get a bye to regroup and the fight back to respectability (if it’s even obtainable) continues in Week 9.

Week 9 … let’s go!

(Home team in caps)

MIAMI +2.5 over Cincinnati
This week is an absolute gauntlet for lines with five of the 13 games featuring lines of 7 or more. But even with so much uncertainty across the league, I can always count in the Thursday Night Football pick to give me a win since I’m not 6-2 on the year on the much-hated Thursday game.

CAROLINA -7.5 over Atlanta
The Panthers are a frustrating team, but their only home loss came in Week 1 against the Seahawks, who might be the best team in the league, and they have won their other three home games by 25, 15 and 18. So when it comes to the banged-up, underachieving 2-5 Falcons, it’s the right decision, even if it’s an NFC South matchup.

DALLAS -10 over Minnesota
When the ESPN ticker said, “Christian Ponder will start for the second straight week,” I knew all I needed to know.

New Orleans -7 over NEW YORK JETS
A tricky, tricky game because the Jets are a different team in MetLife (3-1) than they are on the road (1-3) and the Saints are a different team anywhere outside the Superdome. But after what I saw from the Jets last week in Cincinnati, I wouldn’t feel comfortable taking Geno Smith to cover against Drew Brees since I’m not sure I feel confident the Jets can even score a touchdown.

ST. LOUIS RAMS +3 over Tennessee
It feels like the Titans had a double bye week last week since it feels like forever since I had to pick one of their games. After starting the season 3-1, they have lost three games in a row and their losing streak started when Jake Locker was injured. But don’t let the Titans semi-respectable 3-4 record fool you since their three wins have come against the Steelers, Chargers and Jets.

Kansas City -4.5 over BUFFALO
I really, really, really wanted to take the Bills here and pick for Thad Lewis, but now that he’s out and Jeff Tuel, possibly the worst quarterback of the 2013 season is in, I’m not sure how I can take the Bills to keep it close in Buffalo against the last undefeated team.

WASHINGTON 0 over San Diego
The Giants are 2-6 and still in the NFC East race. The Redskins are 2-5 and in even better shape in the NFC East race. Unfortunately, I think the Redskins will be there in the end. Not “be there” as in win the division, but I think they will be fighting right up until the holiday season with the Giants and Cowboys while the Eagles finish up another fourth-place season.

OAKLAND -2.5 over Philadelphia
Somewhere someone who isn’t a Raiders fan or an Eagles fan is going to bet on this game and watch it in its entirety. Think about that.

SEATTLE -16 over Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay is the new Jacksonville in that I would take pretty much any elite team to cover any spread against them. Sixteen points? That’s it?

CLEVELAND +2.5 over Baltimore
Is Jason Campbell the answer at quarterback for the Browns? Did I really just ask that question in 2013?

NEW ENGLAND -6.5 over Pittsburgh
The Patriots aren’t what we have known the Patriots to be since the 2000s, but that doesn’t matter against the 2013 Steelers at Gillette Stadium.

Indianapolis -3 over HOUSTON
This game badly screams, “TRAP! TRAP! TRAP!” but I’m going to do it anyway.

GREEN BAY -11 over Chicago
No Jay Cutler? This line seems low.

Last week: 7-6-0
Season: 51-65-4