NFL Week 9 Predictions and Picks Against the Spread: Six Best Bets

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Week 8 was a survive and advance situation and we managed to survive and advance with a 3-3 mark to bring the season total to 28-20 (.583). That type of winning percentage would mean a place firmly in those way-too-early playoff pictures that are starting to appear on the broadcasts. We're feeling dangerous for Week 9.


The Zach Wilson Experience is not aesthetically pleasing but the results should make everyone feel better. He's establishing himself as one of those game managers who makes the minimum amount of plays required to springboard off that electric defense and grit out ugly victories. If you squint hard enough and want to see the glass as half-full, you can kind of make out the shape of a bargain-basement Mark Sanchez. A primetime spot in the cold against Justin Herbert will be a great measuring stick and we think Gang Green just continues to find a way to get it done. Jets 23, Chargers 21


Let's just take a pause to point out how insane that the Steelers actually accused the officiating crew of wanting the Jacksonville Jaguars to win last week. It's pretty crazy and without merit. But it could light a fire under their ass on a short week. The defense has been as promised and it will get a chance to feast on Will Levis, who needs to prove it a few more times to earn the benefit of the doubt. Steelers 20, Titans 16


To be clear, both of these teams are awesome and this one promises to be a shootout. We think the world of Geno Smith but when Lamar Jackson and that scheme are on the other side, it's tough to resist. Ravens 38, Sehawks 31


The Texans are not as bad as everybody assumed they'd be but that doesn't mean they have earned the benefit of the doubt yet. Houston gave the Panthers their first win of the season in part because of a patchwork offensive line that couldn't hold up long enough for CJ Stroud to make something happen. Matters are not slated to improve against Vita Vea and the like here. We might see this game on red zone a grand total of four times but Baker Mayfield will grind out a classic ugly win for Tampa. Bucs 20, Texans 10


We'll do it. We'll be brave. We'll make one of our bets on the Europe game this week. Matchups over the pond are always bizarre and usually the opposite of what you think will happen. So, normally, we would circle this one as a classic bounceback game for Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs, with Mahomes fully recovering from his illness and getting mad about the fact that he lost to the Broncos for the first time in his career. Instead, Mahomes' recovery will be hindered by the international travel and all the complications that come with it make it more difficult for Andy Reid to cook up something special for Vic Fangio's defense. Give us Miami, and by a few scores. Dolphins 34, Chiefs 23


THe Bengals made the difficult look quite easy on Sunday, marching into Levi Stadium and handling a fierce (if banged up) San Francisco 49ers team without much trouble. Joe Burrow looked all the way back and as a result so did his receiving corps. The defense looked pretty darn good, too. The Bills, meanwhile, are coming off an underwhelming few weeks and do not have the personnel to deal with all of Cincinnati's threats after all the injuries on defense. Burrow will defend homefield. Bengals 34, Bills 27