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Week 9 NFL game picks: Lions knock off Packers; Chiefs end Titans' winning streak on Sunday night

Gregg Rosenthal went 11-4 straight up on his Week 8 picks, bringing his season total to 72-50-1. How will he fare in Week 9? His picks are below.

The lines provided by Caesars Sportsbook are current as of 10 a.m. ET on Thursday, Nov. 3 unless otherwise noted below.


  • WHERE: Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Atlanta)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | FOX
  • MONEYLINE: Chargers: -160 | Falcons: +135
  • SPREAD: Falcons +3 | O/U: 49.5

Good coaches use the bye week to reset. Is Brandon Staley a good coach? I still believe, but the direction of the dink-and-dunk offense is a major concern with Mike Williams and Keenan Allen hurt. Their status informs this pick. Atlanta's rugged, run-heavy offense hits an L.A. weak spot, while I'm not sure the Bolts can take advantage of the Falcons' short-handed secondary. Considering all the dead money on the Falcons' salary cap, they are paying $84 million less on actual players than the Chargers. It's safe to say Arthur Smith is a good coach.

  • WHERE: Soldier Field (Chicago)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • MONEYLINE: Dolphins: -225 | Bears: +185
  • SPREAD: Dolphins -5 | O/U: 45.5

The additions of Bradley Chubb and Jeff Wilson Jr. bolster a Dolphins roster that should also eventually get back cornerback Byron Jones. As long as Tua Tagovailoa and Terron Armstead are in the lineup, Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle will eat. I love the maturation we've seen from Justin Fields over the past month, but the Bears' defense looked disinterested and disorganized after the Robert Quinn trade. Will they show up after the Roquan Smith trade?

  • WHERE: Paycor Stadium (Cincinnati)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | FOX
  • MONEYLINE: Panthers: +275 | Bengals: -350
  • SPREAD: Panthers +7 | O/U: 42.5

The Bengals being this heavy a favorite assumes the Panthers of the first six weeks of the season are the real Panthers, as opposed to the feisty Panthers of the past two weeks. I believe in change! Before P.J. Walker delivered the play of the year, before D.J. Moore's celebration penalty and Eddy Piñeiro's missed kicks, the Panthers looked like the more physical team for a second straight week. They can do it again against a banged-up Cincy squad that will have to get used to winning close games again.

  • WHERE: Ford Field (Detroit)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | FOX
  • MONEYLINE: Packers: -190 | Lions: +158
  • SPREAD: Lions +3.5 | O/U: 49.5

Is this wishful thinking because I can't handle another Dan Campbell post-loss press conference? Or ... is this the week the Campbell era turns around!? There's little reason to trust Green Bay's defense to get off the field against Detroit. It can always get worse, and Packer backers trying to spin last week's 10-point loss as a moral victory felt hollow. This is the Lions' Super Bowl, at least until Thanksgiving.

  • WHERE: TIAA Bank Field (Jacksonville, Fla.)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • MONEYLINE: Raiders: -125 | Jaguars: +105
  • SPREAD: Raiders -1.5 | O/U: 48

These two teams are somehow 0-10 in one-score games, which makes them both incredibly unlucky and terrible in situational football. There is no way to feel good about picking either team here when each is so expert at snatching losses from the jaws of victory. Still, I trust the Raiders' stars more: Maxx Crosby, Davante Adams and, yes, Josh Jacobs. Derek Carr is coming off a rough game, but he's shooting straighter than Trevor Lawrence.

  • WHERE: Gillette Stadium (Foxborough, Mass.)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • MONEYLINE: Colts: +196 | Patriots: -240
  • SPREAD: Colts +5.5 | O/U: 40

The Colts humbled the Patriots a year ago, running all over them to start New England’s late-season slide. It doesn't appear Indianapolis can pull that off this year with Jonathan Taylor having aggravated his ankle injury behind a faulty offensive line. It's beyond time for the Patriots to decide who their best offensive players are, rather than constantly rotating and trying out different styles each week, with Mac Jones suddenly running RPOs against the Jets. Nothing is consistent enough about the Pats to make them heavy favorites, but the Colts’ offense is consistently bad no matter who is at quarterback.

UPDATE: Colts head coach Frank Reich announced Friday that Jonathan Taylor will not play against the Patriots due to an ankle injury.

  • WHERE: MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, N.J.)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | CBS
  • MONEYLINE: Bills: -650 | Jets: +460
  • SPREAD: Bills -12.5 | O/U: 47

New York's defense is legit and qualifies as the biggest test for Buffalo's offense thus far. Will the Bills stay patient running the ball? Can they protect long enough to throw downfield? These are real concerns! Then again, this looks like a game where Josh Allen could just ask his defense to win it for him. No quarterback is worse under pressure than Zach Wilson. No team is better at creating pressure without blitzing than Buffalo. Sometimes it's that simple. 

  • WHERE: FedExField (Landover, Md.)
  • WHEN: 1 p.m. ET | FOX
  • MONEYLINE: Vikings: -190 | Commanders: +158
  • SPREAD: Vikings -3.5 | O/U: 43.5

Everyone keeps waiting for Minnesota to get its comeuppance, but the schedule keeps delivering teams like Washington. Yes, the Commanders have won three straight games that all took minor miracles. Taylor Heinicke gives his talented receivers a chance to make plays. But the Vikings' underrated tackle duo of Christian Darrisaw and Brian O'Neill can mitigate the Commanders' biggest strength in the pass rush, giving Kirk Cousins time to remind Washington what it let walk away. (Slightly above-average quarterback play, which is something the Commanders could use.) 

  • WHERE: State Farm Stadium (Glendale, Ariz.)
  • WHEN: 4:05 p.m. ET | FOX
  • MONEYLINE: Seahawks: +110 | Cardinals: -130
  • SPREAD: Seahawks +2 | O/U: 49.5

Is the Seahawks’ D for real? After being one of the worst defenses in football for five games, it’s been one of the league's best in the last three contests, starting with holding the Cardinals’ offense to three points. Geno Smith and the Seattle offense have proven as reliable and accurate as a Geno downfield throw, so even a competent defense makes his squad a contender. Smith has excelled under pressure this season, while Arizona's secondary has given up big plays even when the pass rushers get heat on the quarterback. 

  • WHERE: Raymond James Stadium (Tampa, Fla.)
  • WHEN: 4:25 p.m. ET | CBS
  • MONEYLINE: Rams: +130 | Buccaneers: -155
  • SPREAD: Buccaneers -3 | O/U: 42.5

Tom Brady's Buccaneers are 0-3 against the Sean McVay Rams, including the Divisional Round loss that briefly sent Brady into retirement. Now both teams are shells of their former selves, looking for a life raft. The Bucs don't have a running game, but they do have more weapons. They also have a secondary getting healthier and a blitz-heavy attack that should give the Rams problems. With a little extra rest and a home game, Tampa Bay is the better pick.

  • WHERE: GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium (Kansas City, Mo.)
  • WHEN: 8:20 p.m. ET | NBC, Universo
  • MONEYLINE: Titans: +460 | Chiefs: -650
  • SPREAD: Titans +12.5 | O/U: 46

The last time we saw the Chiefs, they eclipsed 40 points against one of the NFL's best defenses with Patrick Mahomes being touched just three times. The Titans’ defensive front is scary, but Mahomes is an expert when it comes to picking out mismatches. Derrick Henry is on one right now, and the Titans are stubborn enough to keep running him even if they are trailing. If Malik Willis starts for the second straight week in place of the injured Ryan Tannehill, take 10 points away from Tennessee.


These would be my top two picks in the "better than their record" Olympics. Both teams could go streaking in the second half of the season -- especially New Orleans, if rookie cornerback Alontae Taylor is as good as he looks. It's too early to say the Saints’ defense is back, but the offense is efficient enough and the Superdome will be rocking. With Mark Andrews and Gus Edwards both doubtful, I’m flipping my pick to the Saints. Lamar Jackson needs more help against a talented defense. (Original pick: Ravens 25, Saints 24. Odds are current as of 9:45 a.m. ET on Sunday.)


The Texans have been competitive for three quarters most weeks, but this is not most weeks, and the final score is determined after four quarters. Lovie Smith's defense has quietly taken a step back this season, especially against the run. Davis Mills' conservative approach wasn't working with Nico Collins healthy and Brandin Cooks happy, and now neither is true. Meanwhile, the Eagles don't even need to pass when they have a historically good running game rolling. But they can pass, and they will!

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