NFL Week 9 - Sunday Preview Part 2

NFL Week 9 - Sunday Preview Part 2

Carolina Panthers (2-5) @ Los Angeles Rams (3-4) - Los Angeles Coliseum

The Panthers are in need of building a big winning streak to make a late run for the playoffs as they visit the Rams on Sunday. Cam Newton and company looked back to somewhere near their best last week as they dominated the Arizona Cardinals at home with a 30-20 win. However, the Panthers are winless on the road this year and will have to overcome a Rams team that has played tough football at home. After starting 3-1, the Rams appear on a familiar slide out of playoff contention behind a stuttering offense.

Verdict - Panthers 33 Rams 13

I think the Panthers are specials here. There is too much talent in this team for them to just fizzle out and not mount a late run for the playoffs. I think the Rams are going backwards and are ripe for the picking. 

New Orleans Saints (3-4) @ San Fransisco 49ers (1-6) @ Levi Stadium

New Orleans will be looking to breathe fresh life into their playoff prospects when they face off with a telling 49ers outfit at Levi Stadium. The Saints are coming off an impressive 25-20 home victory over the Seahawks and can get back into the playoff hunt with a victory here. The 49ers' season has gone from bad to worse since an opening day victory over the Rams. Colin Kaepernick has failed to spark the side on his return and looks certain to be traded at year's end. 

Verdict - Saints 31 49ers 20

The Saints are bad away from home, but I'll back anyone against the 49ers right now. Chip Kelly's men appear directionless with the franchise falling into significant dysfunction since the bewildering decision to sack coach Jim Harbaugh who led them to three straight AFC Championship games. 

Indianapolis Colts (3-5) @ Green Bay Packers (4-3) - Lambeau Field

Two of the best quarterbacks in the league square off as Aaron Rodgers' Packers take on Andrew Luck's Colts at Lambeau Field. Rodgers has sprung to life in the last couple of weeks after a slow start to the season, however, it wasn't enough last week as the Packers were rolled late 33-32 in Atlanta. The Colts put up a dreadful display being thrashed at homes by the Chiefs 30-14 to drop to 3-5 in the season. 

Verdict - Packers 38 Colts 23

The Colts look beaten up and I think Aaron Rodgers can have a day out here. Expect Andrew Luck to play well, however he does not have anywhere near enough help around him on this team. I can't see the Colts making the playoffs despite being in a weak NFC South. 

Tennessee Titans (4-4) @ San Diego Chargers (3-5) - Qualcomm Stadium

The Titans and Chargers both need a victory to aid their playoff hopes as they clash at Qualcomm Stadium on Sunday. San Diego have been competitive in every game this year, however find themselves 3-5 and cast adrift in last place in a strong AFC West. The Titans have built some momentum in their season, winning 3 out of their last 4 games after a 1-3 start to the year. 

Verdict - Chargers 31 Titans 24

Despite having a worse record than the Titans, I think the Chargers are a better football team, and they can win this game at home. With the Broncos, Raiders and Chiefs setting a hot pace in the AFC West, the Chargers cannot afford too many more losses and I think they can win a high scoring and entertaining game here. 

Denver Broncos (6-2) @ Oakland Raiders (6-2) - Oakland Coliseum

It's the match-up of the round on Sunday Night Football as bitter rivals the Broncos and Raiders collide in Oakland, with outright first place in the AFC West at stake. It has been a long while since the Raiders had such an important nationally televised game and expect the Oakland Coliseum to be rocking on Sunday Night. The Raiders have won 5 straight road games and started the season 6-2, mainly on the back of a high powered offence led by Derek Carr. The defending Super Bowl Champion Broncos again have one of the best defences in the league and will relish the chance to try and put the upstart Raiders back in their box here. 

Verdict - Raiders 27 Broncos 21

Might be a bit of heart over head here, but I am going with the Raiders at home. I just think their offense is explosive, and Denver have plenty of question marks over their offence. The Raiders need to tidy up their discipline and defence or Denver might have a picnic, just like the Chiefs did in the Raiders' last home game.