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NFL Week 9 Predictions: Football Teams on Upset Alert

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NFL Week 9 Predictions: Football Teams on Upset Alert
Anthony Miller #17 of the Chicago Bears. Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images/AFP

For the sportsbooks, Week 8 was far and away the most profitable week of the season, which is quite a turnaround after a season-high of losses the week prior. What on earth can we expect for the midpoint of the season?

Last week was flat out crazy and underdog bettors cleaned up, though they were in the minority. Teams catching points were 10-4 ATS and that included seven outright upsets. In the articles relating to this topic, not only did the books win the regular spread bets, but all those upsets helped them mop up on various types of parlays and teasers of all kinds.

In looking at the games from last week for straight-up picks pools, many contests could have gone either way. Though there is a number that fits the same criteria this week, we also have more featuring teams with poor records, making those the lesser of two evils choices. Let’s go on the hunt against the NFL odds and seek what teams could be in trouble this week.

Chicago Bears vs. Tennessee Titans

Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 1:00 pm ET (FOX) – at Nissan Stadium

Coming into the season, it was known Tennessee had a strong offense which helped them to reach the AFC championship last season. The defense had cracks and few were addressed in the off-season. To many, that weakness was largely dismissed after the Titans started 5-0 and scoring was up across the professional football universe.

After losses to Pittsburgh and Cincinnati, that problem now comes to the forefront for coach Mike Vrabel. Tennessee is allowing 26.3 points a game and ranks 25th in total defense. While that might work when they hit their average of 29.7 PPG, it will not when they don’t, as what has occurred in the last two games.

On the surface, Chicago does not appear to be a threat because their offensive line is one of the worst in the NFL and Nick Foles is showing he, like most quarterbacks, play better with talent around them.

Yet Foles, even in defeat, has found ways to keep his club competitive, like last week against New Orleans when down 10 points late, he helped force OT. The Bears defense had a great deal to do with that and the thought of having +5.5 points with Chicago () is better than that week-old pizza at the back of the refrigerator.

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Quarterback Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens passes against the Cincinnati Bengals. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFP

Baltimore Ravens vs. Indianapolis Colts

Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 1:00 pm ET (CBS) – at Lucas Oil Stadium

Something is amiss with Baltimore and it stands out like almost any picture of singer Billie Eilish. After taking the NFL by storm last year on the way to winning the MVP, Lamar Jackson has slowly but noticeably regressed. Granted, the Ravens tallied 457 yards against a stellar Pittsburgh defense last week, but Jackson had two interceptions and two fumbles, which helped seal his team’s fate.

Since throwing for 270 yards in the season opener against Cleveland, Jackson only once has surpassed the 200-yard barrier in net passing yards once (206), which is holding his club back against better competition. The third-year pro looks hesitant to drive the ball throwing and is waiting for teammates to come open instead of anticipating they will.

Philip Rivers is no prize at this juncture of his career, but he's fearless, rightly or wrongly, to chuck the pigskin. Coach Frank Reich is placing Rivers in better situations to complete short passes that can lead to bigger gains, using screens, slants, wheel routes and mixing in deeper passes.

If Indianapolis’ No. 2 run defense can keep Baltimore’s top-ranked running game to 150 yards and control them on first and second downs, they force Jackson to make accurate throws down the field. For NFL picks, let’s snag the Colts as home underdogs.

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Quarterback Derek Carr #4 of the Las Vegas Raiders. Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images/AFP

Las Vegas Raiders vs. Los Angeles Chargers

Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020 4:05 pm ET (FOX) – SoFi Stadium

We are not suggesting Jon Gruden’s game plan should include having his team down 17-0 in the first quarter to the Los Angeles Chargers, but if it did, it would be hard to argue with.

With a third straight crushing setback in which the Chargers held at least a 17-point lead, head coach Anthony Lynn might want to chuck his defensive coordinator before he is let go. Never has the adage “A prevent defense prevents you from winning” ring truer.

and it seems they are set at quarterback for now and in the future with Justin Herbert. However, there are bigger issues and since they came from behind victory to start the season in Cincinnati, the Chargers have been outscored 107-68 after halftime.

You should also know besides being the first NFL team to blow a trio of 17-point leads, the last 56 teams to have such a lead are 52-4 SU (Thanks to ESPN Stats). And let’s not forget, this team led both Kansas City and Jacksonville by double digits and only beat the Jaguars. The Raiders improve to 5-3 Sunday.

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