Week 9 Matchup Predictions
Bears win 28-14.
Dolphins (4-3) @ Colts (4-3): As you may expect with a team led by a rookie quarterback, the Colts have been very inconsistent this season. They have wins over the Vikings and Packers right alongside losses to the Jaguars and Jets. The Dolphins, on the other hand, have flown under the radar as a consistently solid team. Their only regulation loss came against the 6-1 Texans, and they're now on a three game win streak. The strongest unit in this matchup is the Dolphins' defense, so I'm going to go with the Dolphins and their consistent play.
Dolphins win 20-17.
Panthers (1-6) @ Redskins (3-5): The Panthers aren't quite as bad as their 1-6 record suggests. Five of their six losses have come in one-score games, and the one that didn't was against the reigning Super Bowl champion Giants. The Redskins have a worse record than any of the teams the Panthers have lost to. If Cam Newton has any shot at a breakout game, it will be this week against the Redskins' 32nd ranked pass defense. Robert Griffin III was crippled by his receivers last week against the Steelers, as they seemed to forget how to catch footballs. While I expect RG3 to bounce back thanks to improved receiver play, I'm going with a breakout performance from Cam in this one.
Panthers win 30-27.
Lions (3-4) @ Jaguars (1-6): The Lions have been disappointing this season in a number of ways. First of all, they're 3-4 after being a popular playoff pick. In addition, their offense has generated the second most yards in the league, but is only ranked 16th in scoring. This team has loads of potential, but they've just had trouble finding ways to get wins. They'll find their way this week, however. It's hard to pick the Jaguars against anyone, especially now that their far-and-away best offensive weapon, Maurice Jones-Drew, is out with a foot injury. They're ranked dead last in both scoring and total offense, and their defense isn't nearly as good as it was last year to make up for it. I can't see any way they beat the Lions.
Lions win 31-10.
Bills (3-4) @ Texans (6-1): The Bills are ranked dead last in run defense, and the Texans have one of the league's best run-blocking offensive lines to clear the way for the electrifying Arian Foster. The Texans have one of the league's best defensive units as well - especially against the run, which counters the Bills' offensive strength - and they have an incredibly efficient offense that has the least turnovers in the league. The Texans will get out to a lead and pound the Bills porous defense with the run game all day long.
Texans win 27-17.