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2013 NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 9


Locks of the Week
Two of the best home field advantages in the NFL host a pair of teams with a combined 2–12 record this season.

Seahawks (-16) vs. Buccaneers
Seattle’s average margin of victory at home is 20 points, including a 45–17 win over Jacksonville — Tampa’s misery-loving company in the two-team winless club.

Patriots (-6.5) vs. Steelers
Tom Brady was famously (or infamously) the Wizard of Oz’s Cowardly Lion for Halloween. Expect Brady-to-Gronkowski to roar against the staggering Steelers.

Straight Up Upsets
A couple of NFC East clubs will pull off low-number, mild shockers against the bottom half of the AFC West this week.

Eagles (+2.5) at Raiders
Nick Foles comes back from concussion to replace an injured Michael Vick, who was replaced by a rookie Matt Barkley last week. Chip Kelly wishes he still had Marcus Mariota.

Redskins (+1) vs. Chargers
San Diego will take the dreaded flight to the Eastern Time Zone for an early kickoff. But the triumphant return to form from RG3 will be what cooks the Chargers.

Backdoor Covers
One big number, one small number, but expect the same closer-than-expected results.

Vikings (+10) at Cowboys
Palestine, Texas, native Adrian Peterson returns to the Lone Star State to carry the Vikings to a single-digit loss on the big screen at Jerry’s House.

Rams (+3) vs. Titans
The Jeff Fisher Bowl will certainly be a field goal fest of ball-control, defense and staring contests between Fisher and his former team. Take the under (39.5) in this 17–16 game.

Sucker Bets
Steer clear of these games unless you’re a degenerate or a hometown homer who has to have action on all the action.

Panthers (-7.5) vs. Falcons
Cam Newton had 287 passing yards, 116 rushing yards and three total TDs in a 30–20 win when Atlanta visited Charlotte last year.

Saints (-6) at Jets
This matchup of Rob Ryan vs. Rex Ryan will be a Big Apple heavyweight bout just short of King Kong vs. Godzilla.

Chiefs (-3) at Bills
Alex Smith has posted an impressive 27–5–1 record over the past three seasons. That is serious “game management,” Captain Checkdown.

Ravens (-2.5) at Browns
Baltimore is 10–1 in games following its bye week since 2002 and a perfect 5–0 after the bye under coach John Harbaugh.

Colts (-2.5) at Texans
In two meetings last season, these AFC South rivals came away with a 1–1 record and a combined score of 45–45.

Monday Night Moolah
The oldest rivalry in football gives gamblers a chance to daaa-ble down on winnings or daaa-ble back on this week’s losses.

Packers (-10.5) vs. Bears
Chicago leads the all-time series 92–88–6. But the Cheeseheads from Title Town are riding a six-game winning streak over Bill Swerski’s Superfans from the Windy City.