Considering the quality of games and the excitement surrounding the NFL at the moment, not to mention finally gaining a game on Dan, this is a really bad week to be short on time for writing. I won’t bore you with the details, but I will be trying a different format this week to keep the picks going, trying to hit key points from last week and the season so far without double checking various stats and rankings. Knowing my luck, I’ll do better picking this week.

Gee:     Week 9   7-6               Overall   66-68
Dan:     Week 9   6-7               Overall   69-65

Browns @ Bengals (-6.5)

So the Browns are doing okay this season, not in the way I was expecting but they remain competitive in a division where everyone has a winning record. The Bengals seem to be surviving their slump and turning it around, but the performance of Andy Dalton is still a little worrying. I think the Bengals will win this game, but the points are too rich for me.

Gee’s Pick:       Browns
Dan’s Pick:       Browns

Falcons @ Buccaneers (+0.5)

The Falcons are ravaged by injury, but flew out of the gates to start the Wembley game yet couldn’t hold on against the Lions and lost another one. The Buccaneers covered against the Browns, and did some things themselves, but there seems to be such disarray with this team. I don’t particularly like either one of them, but at least the Falcons have a quality quarterback with some weapons and so in a pick the winner spread, I’m going for the Falcons.

Gee’s Pick:       Falcons
Dan’s Pick:       Falcons

Chiefs @ Bills (+1.5)

This should be a really good game, which you might have questioned before the start of the season, but both teams are playing well. The Bills have a tremendous defence and Kyle Orton seems to be providing enough stability at quarterback that they remain competitive in the AFC East. The Chiefs are also playing solid football, getting themselves a 5-3 record whilst staying in every game bar the now inexplicable loss to the Titans in week one. I’m really torn on this game, I’m leaning towards the Chiefs as I think they’ve been more consistent, but that could be EJ Manuel’s performance from earlier in the season poisoning my trust in the Bills.

Gee’s Pick:       Chiefs
Dan’s Pick:       Chiefs

Cowboys @ Jaguars (+7.5)

The Cowboys excellent start of the season seems to be stuttering, and as worrying as the Tony Romo back injury is, I’m also concerned that two weeks in a row their much praised offensive line has struggled to protect their quarterback. The Jaguars are playing pretty well on defence, but are just too short on talent, to win. That said, I have a feeling that the Cowboys will struggle and this will be a close game. Either that or DeMarco Murray is about to get right back on track after finally having his record breaking streak of one hundred yard games to start the season broken.

Gee’s Pick:       Jaguars
Dan’s Pick:       Cowboys

Dolphins @ Lions (-2.5)

The Dolphins had one of the performances of the week on Sunday in their 37-0 beating of the Chargers. They have a terrific defence, and they finally seem to be getting the best out of Ryan Tannehill, which has kept them part of the conversation in a competitive AFC East division. The Lions are heading up their division, playing excellent defence but they’re struggling on offence with some key injuries. I’m really torn on this game as well, for some reason I still don’t trust the Dolphins fully, but I’m not sure what I’m getting with the Lions either and I don’t feel I can go against a team that’s just won so convincingly.

Gee’s Pick:       Dolphins
Dan’s Pick:       Dolphins

Titans @ Ravens (-9.5)

The Ravens were playing so consistently, but have wobbled the last couple of weeks having lost Jimmy Smith, which really seems to have caused problems in their secondary, in fact so much trouble that they have just released two cornerbacks. The Titans on the other hand have been an incredibly non-descript team that seem lacking in talent and the best performance by one of their players on Sunday was the linebacker they just sent to the Patriots. The only thing that is making me think about this game is the spread, but I haven’t seen enough from the Titans’ offence that makes me think that they can exploit these problems and I don’t think it is a coincidence that the Ravens’ last two losses were on the road, I’m betting on them to bounce back. Although not particularly confidently.

Gee’s Pick:       Ravens
Dan’s Pick:       Titans

49ers @ Saints (-4.5)

The 49ers are having a troubled season, injured on defence and misfiring on offence, with an o-line whose play has slipped and problems getting the ball in the end zone. They are facing a Saints team who traditionally play well at home, and who have put together two wins in a row as they recover from a rocky start to the season. It appears that Drew Brees has found a rhythm and I think this is the week the Saints finally get themselves a winning record.

Gee’s Pick:       Saints
Dan’s Pick:       Saints

Steelers @ Jets (+4.5)

The Steelers have been good for two weeks in a row, with Ben Roethlisberger throwing six touchdowns in each of them. They still have some weaknesses on defence, but James Harrison has started rolling, a couple of weeks after coming out of retirement and was terrifying against the Ravens last week. The Jets seem to be imploding and I do not understand what benefit they are getting from starting Michael Vick over Geno Smith, frankly they would be better finding out for sure if Smith can turn it round and if not, getting the better pick. They’re not getting into the playoffs from their current position.

Gee’s Pick:       Steelers
Dan’s Pick:       Steelers

Broncos @ Raiders (+11.5)

The Broncos had a horrible game against the Patriots, and the narratives about Manning in the cold and losing to Brady will resurface, but I still think they are the most rounded team in the league and I think they will bounce back in this game. The Raiders finally have a pair of players for their fans to get excited about in the rookies David Carr and Khalil Mack, but haven’t been able to turn any of their close losses into wins. Sadly I don’t think they will be keeping this one close, but I don’t see them going winless all year.

Gee’s Pick:       Broncos
Dan’s Pick:       Broncos

Rams @ Cardinals (-7.5)

The Cardinals keep rolling with great defence and one of the best coaching jobs done by a staff of any team. The injuries kept piling up, but so do the wins and I don’t think this game will be an exception. The Rams got another win, with their much vaunted front seven looking more like themselves last week as they more than doubled their sack total for the year in one game. However, their offence struggled without Jake Long and I think the Cardinals will be a much sterner test than the struggling 49ers.

Gee’s Pick:       Cardinals
Dan’s Pick:       Cardinals

Giants @ Seahawks (-9.5)

The Seahawks have struggled to live up to their Super Bowl winning play of last year, but have righted the ship in the last couple of weeks against the Panthers and the Raiders. Neither of these have been big wins but I think that could be about to change, the Giants were pretty awful against the Colts last week, and have been struggling for large parts of the season, and Seattle is not the place to put that right.

Gee’s Pick:       Seahawks
Dan’s Pick:       Giants

Bears @ Packers (-7.5)

The Bears are also imploding, but not where I thought they would. The offence has failed to continue the progress from last year, with a lot of the blame surely falling on Jay Cutler who has thrown too many interceptions. The Packers had a wobble to start the season, but since Rodgers told Packers fans to relax, they’ve gone 5-1 and although I was overly bullish about them travelling to New Orleans, I don’t think they are going to have any such problems at home this week.

Gee’s Pick:       Packers
Dan’s Pick:       Packers

Panthers @ Eagles (-6.5)

The Panthers haven’t been able to get both the offence and defence to play well at the same time this season, with Cam Newton’s play being particularly worrying over the last couple of weeks. The Eagles have been a bit up and down this season, particularly as the o-line has had some injuries. They just lost Nick Foles to a broken collar bone and possibly more worryingly they’ve lost linebacker Demeco Ryans for the season. We’ll now get to see how well Mark Sanchez can play for an offensive minded coach, and I’m backing them more than the troubled Panthers.

Gee’s Pick:       Eagles
Dan’s Pick:       Eagles