The bulk of 4 pm games are, for the second straight week, lackluster contests on paper. The same can be said about this week's prime time match-ups. The Chiefs are still the league's only unbeaten team, and, looking at their game this coming weekend, I wouldn't expect that to change.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Cincinnati Bengals at Miami Dolphins
It wasn't that long ago that I would have gone with Miami here. The Dolphins are not just losers of four straight. They are losers of four straight with a Bye in the middle, and they seemingly cannot purchase a win at the moment. On the other side of the field will be the Bengals, who haven't lost since the end of September.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns
Do not give up on the Browns. They were a dropped punt away from potentially beating the undefeated Kansas City Chiefs, and Jason Campbell was solid at starting quarterback against maybe the best defense in the league. Baltimore is coming off of a Bye week, but these Ravens are not last year's champions. Believe in Cleveland.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Kansas City Chiefs at Buffalo Bills
Buffalo QB Thad Lewis is having a week. He has a rib contusion, and he is also dealing with the flu. Either Jeff Tuel or Matt Flynn could get the start if Lewis can't go. That could mean bad times for the Bills.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Minnesota Vikings at Dallas Cowboys
Dallas has yet to defeat a .500 team in 2013. Fortunately for the Cowboys, they aren't facing one this time around. The NFC East may be terrible, the Vikings are even more terrible. Just ask the New York Giants about that.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Tennessee Titans at St. Louis Rams
The Rams had their shot at a highlight reel moment of the year when they were a few yards away from defeating the Seattle Seahawks on national TV last Monday night. They blew it. Now St. Louis is on short rest and facing a showdown with a rested Tennessee side that is attempting to save its season.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: New Orleans Saints at New York Jets
Just when one starts to believe in the J-E-T-S, they go and get ca-rushed by the Bengals. New York is likely to play better at MetLife Stadium, but I don't believe in the hosts. Drew Brees would be having a MVP year if not for Peyton Manning, and people are still under-selling the defense of the Saints.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: San Diego Chargers at Washington Redskins
Washington is maybe the most disappointing team in the league. They are responsible for the third-worst pass defense in the NFL, and now that unit has to try and stop Philip Rivers. There's also the fact that Robert Griffin III is banged up (again), and it's only Week 9.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers
How bad are the Falcons? There is talk that Tony Gonzalez could leave the team even though the trade deadline has come and gone. Atlanta hasn't won once when away in 2013. That trend isn't ending, even if Cam Newton has only an average game.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Philadelphia Eagles at Oakland Raiders
The most shocking thing about this game is that the Raiders are, as of the posting of this piece, only giving a single point away in the latest line. Terrelle Pryor is healthy and ready to go. All three of Oakland's wins have come at home. Philly's offense is in shambles. Yikes.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Seattle Seahawks
Tampa Bay is really giving Jacksonville a run at the first pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. The Bucs are awful, and why they haven't yet fired Greg Schiano baffles just about everybody in football.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Pittsburgh Steelers at New England Patriots
The Steelers showed some life at Oakland. Too bad that life came in the fourth quarter of that contest. New England failed to land either Josh Gordon or Hakeem Nicks before Tuesday's deadline. Neither should be needed this weekend. I'd have a smidgen of hope for Pittsburgh if this wasn't taking place at Gillette Stadium. It is, and so I don't.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans
This would have been considered a potential playoff preview two months ago. That's far from the case now. The Texans are a disaster, and Gary Kubiak appears to be out of answers.
2013 Week 9 NFL picks: Chicago Bears at Green Bay Packers
This is another game that would have been more interesting weeks ago. Chicago is maybe the most beat up team in the league. Jay Cutler could come back earlier than originally expected, but he isn't playing on Monday. Perhaps the Bears could pull this off at home. They don't have that luxury this week.