The NFL bets you need to make in Week 9

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Another NFL Sunday is upon us, and we’ve spent all week compiling the best betting angles – and not just for spread and totals – presenting our NFL picks for team totals, props and derivatives in our daily NFL betting predictions. So sit back, relax, and check out the best NFL bets for Week 9. **video

STILLS STILL NO .2

Houston Texans’ No. 2 receiver Will Fuller has been ruled out for the London game this Sunday leaving Kenny Stills as the second option in Deshaun Watson’s passing attack. Fuller has basically missed the last two games and in his absence, Stills has been a boom or bust bet with 105 yards and four catches in Week 7 and just 22 yards on three grabs last week.

The Jacksonville Jaguars do own the league’s seventh-best DVOA pass defense but Stills might see more one-on-one coverage with most of the attention and safety help keying on DeAndre Hopkins.

With Stills’ receiving total on the high side at 60.5 yards, we will be keying in on his reception total of 3.5 and look to grab the Over. Stills and the Houston offense are averaging 27 completions a game so there is plenty of room for Stills to reach this modest total.

HOWARD TO RUN VERSUS FORMER TEAM

The Philadelphia Eagles might be looking to go on one of their mid-season runs on the heels of last week’s convincing win in Buffalo. This Eagles squad is successful as a run-first offense as they ran the ball 41 times last week, more than any other team in Week 8.

Jordan Howard has been the biggest beneficiary of the Eagles’ game plan as the former Bear saw 71 percent of the offensive snaps last week and has been dominating early-down work. Chicago’s defense has been better against the pass than the run which should suit Doug Pederson’s game script for Sunday.

Howard will be running with extra motivation as he will face his former employer and has a good chance of going Over his carry total of 16.5.

COLTS’ PASS CATCHERS QUESTIONABLE

The Indianapolis Colts are scoring just 20.7 points on the road this year and will be without an important piece of their passing game Sunday when they take on the Steelers in Pittsburgh.

T.Y. Hilton was downgraded to DNP on Thursday after being limited on Wednesday and has now been ruled out with a calf injury. Hilton has nearly double the targets as the next Indy receiver since their bye in Week 6 and has five touchdowns through six games.

Tight end Eric Ebron didn’t practice Thursday but will likely play Sunday. Ebron has been a steady passing option for Jacoby Brissett, averaging over four targets a game going over 45 yards three times.

The player to benefit the most would be tight end Jack Doyle who has seen the second-most targets since Week 7 and has averaged 42 yards a game over that stretch. We are doubling down on Doyle and hitting his Over 3.5 receptions and Over on his 35.5 receiving yards which are reasonable totals even with Ebron healthy and Hilton playing.

BEST VS WORST

Here is a list of some of the best and worst “defense versus receiver” matchups per Football Outsiders. Receiving totals are in parentheses.

D.Hopkins (86.5) vs. Jaguars: The Texans and DeAndre Hopkins are taking the show on the road to London this week. Deshaun Watson’s main squeeze has a dream matchup versus a secondary that is giving up 93 yards on 8.9 passes per game to No.1 receivers. DeAndre is coming in hot as he has eclipse 100 yards in two straight games and has passed his 86.5 yard total in three of his last four weeks. Greenlight on the Over.

Odell Beckham Jr (71.5) vs. Broncos: OBJ has topped 71 yards receiving just twice in seven games this year and is facing a defense that has allowed just 52.1 yards a game to teams’ No.1s. The Broncos have shut down top receivers this year including T.Y. Hilton – 54 yards, T. Hill – 74 yards, A. Humphries – 47 yards and K. Allen – 18 yards over their last four games. Greenlight on the Under 71.5.

Evan Engram (61.5) vs. Cowboys: The New York Giants have their full arsenal of offensive weapons suiting up this week. This means the league’s fourth-worst team at containing opposing tight ends (70.3 yards on 7.6 passes per game) will have their hands full and won’t be able to cheat on Monday night. Engram torched Jerry and the Boys in Week 1 for 116 yards on 11 catches and a score. Engram has also topped 61 yards receiving in three straight games versus Dallas, dating back to last year. Greenlight Engram’s Over at 61.5 receiving yards.

Mark Andrews (56.5) vs. Patriots: No tight end has reached 60 yards receiving versus the New England defense this year. Asking Mark Andrews to top a number he has only hit just once in his last five games versus a top-three defense is asking a lot. Feel confident taking the Under on Andrews’ receiving total of 56.5.

Leonard Fournette (33.5) vs. Texans: Leonard Fournette has the 11th-most receiving yards by a running back this year heading into Wembley for Sunday morning’s game. The Jacksonville running back is averaging 5.6 targets a game while the Texans are surrendering a league-worst 7.5 yards per target to opposing RBs. That math (7.5 x 5.6) puts us at 25 percent over Fournette’s receiving total of 33.5 yards. Greenlight is a go here.

Dion Lewis (14.5) vs. Panthers: Not much to see here as 15 yards is a little too low for our liking. If you must, Lewis has seen just two targets in the passing game over the last two weeks for a whopping two yards. Carolina is allowing just 25 yards through the air to opposing RBs. This one is a pass for us.

PIVOT PROBLEMS

The Oakland Raiders have a serious problem with their pivot as backup center Andre James didn’t practice Wednesday. Already without starter Rodney Houston, the Raiders would need Richie Incognito to slide in at center if James can’t ready before Sunday’s game versus the Detroit Lions.

This comes as a bad time for the Silver and Black as the Lions are getting their two starting defensive tackles back for the tilt. Lions’ No.1 corner Darius Slay is also trending towards playing.

Carr has been sacked just eight times all year and may face a bit more pressure than he is accustomed to, forcing him into some riskier passes. We are banking on the Lions to capitalize on this and are taking Over 0.5 interceptions for the Raiders QB.

TOM NOT-SO TERRIFIC

The Baltimore Ravens’ secondary is getting healthier ahead of their big AFC matchup with the New England Patriots on Sunday Night Football. The Ravens will have free safety Earl Thomas and get stud corner Jimmy Smith back, as well. This will push corner Marlon Humphrey (positive PFF grade) into the slot where he will see a heavy dose of Julian Edleman.

Tom Brady has played to a passer rating of  83.3 over his last five games and Sunday’s game will be just his second time, and first in five weeks, facing a team with a winning record this year. His QBR rating of 58.7 is also the worst mark of his career.

We are 1-0 this year betting against the GOAT and looking to fade his passing total in Week 9. Take the Under on Tom Terrific’s 292.5 passing yard total.

ACCIDENTS WILL ALLEN

The Denver Broncos have punted the most over their last three games at 7.3 a game and have converted an abysmal 12.8 percent of their third downs over that stretch. This is the offense that Joe Flacco has passed down to Brandon Allen for the Broncos Week 9 matchup with the Cleveland Browns.

Allen has yet to take a regular-season snap since being drafted in the sixth-round in 2016. In the preseason, however, the newest member of the Broncos has thrown 11 interceptions and been sacked 13 times in 226 pass attempts (62.8 completion percent). It’s tough to be worse than Flacco, but Allen has a good chance of doing it against the Browns whose defense is tied for eighth in completions against at 21.1.

Flacco averaged 21 completions over his eight starts this year and cleared 20 completions just once in his last four. There is a better chance that Allen falls on his face than he performs better than Flacco. Take the Under on Allen’s 20.5 completions.

BACKING A BOTHERED BELL

Last week we backed Le’Veon Bell’s rushing total and came up plenty short. We weren’t the only ones who were upset as even Bell, himself, was frustrated and angry about his lack of touches. But it looks like head coach, Adam Gase and the running back have made amends, and are “on the same page” ahead of the Jets matchup against the Miami Dolphins, a game in which the Jets are favored for the first time since Week 1.

The Dolphins are allowing the second-most rushing yards per game to opponents at 160 as they are giving up 4.8 yards per rush attempt. The ‘Fins have also allowed three backs to eclipse the century mark over their last five games: James Connor, Adrian Peterson and Ezekiel Elliott.

We are chasing last week’s loss on the squeaky-wheel theory and riding the Over on Bell’s rushing total of 75.5 yards.

KICKING PLAY OF THE WEEK

In the four games at New Era Stadium this year, the longest field goal made was 46 yards. That was in Week 4 with warmer and less windy conditions than Sunday’s game between Washington and Bills.

Last week, the northwest had some serious winds that really hampered teams’ kickers. This week in Buffalo, the temperature will be just above freezing with strong winds of the 20-mph variety.

Washington Kicker Dustin Hopkins is just 1-for-3 from 40 and longer since Week 1, while Buffalo kicker Stephen Hauschka is 0-for-3 in attempts from 49 or farther. We are making the WSH/BUF longest field goal Under 45.5 our kicking play of the week.

THE HYPE IS LOUD

One would think that the loss of Davante Adams would affect Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers’ offense. However, the Packers are a perfect 4-0 without the star receiver and averaging 32.5 points. That mark would put them tops in the league and nearly 10 points higher than their PPG with Adams on the Field.

Rodgers has also seen his passer rating jump 18 points up to 118.7 as he will look to take Matt LaFleur’s rolling offense to L.A. to face the Chargers. The Bolts have seen the weakest stretch of opposing QBs over the last five weeks: M.Trubisky, R.Tannehill, D.Hodges, J.Flacco, and J.Rosen. The Bolts went 2-3 SU (2-3 ATS) over those five games and allowed an average of 18.4 completions, 211 yards passing with one touchdown and one interception.

All the Rodgers hype has led to some bloated prop lines especially on his completions which sit at 25.5 — a number he has eclipsed just twice this year and no QB has topped versus LAC. The Chargers are also giving up 140 rushing yards at home which has us leaning on a heavier Green Bay rushing attack. We are hitting the Under on Rodgers’ completions of 25.5.

THE BOYS ARE BACK IN TOWN

With the news that New York Giants receiver Sterling Shepard has shed his non-contact jersey after missing time with a concussion, it would mean that the Giants may finally get their full offensive unit for their Monday night game versus Dallas. It will be the first game that Daniel Jones, Saquon Barkley, Evan Engram Golden Tate and Shepard will share the field.

The Giants may not be winning of late but the offense has been competent as Daniel Jones is coming off a career-high in passing yards with 322 versus the Detroit Lions. The Giants showed that they can play catch up and put points on the board after trailing by double digits three separate times last week and losing by just five.

With the Cowboys defense being anything but consistent (19th DVOA defense), we are leaning on the Over of the Giants’ team total of 19.5.

JAX THE RIPPER

The Jacksonville Jaguars will head to their second home this Sunday as the Garner Minshew-led Jags will take on the Houston Texans in jolly old London. Receiver D.J. Chark may lead the team in receiving yards, but Minshew has a new side piece that has been getting a lot of attention of late.

Chris Conley leads the Jags in receiving yards over the last two weeks hauling in seven passes for 186 yards and a score with catches of 70 and 47 yards. The 4.3 speedster has the ability to turn short catches into long gains and can get behind the defense as his 20.4 yards per reception indicates.

Also in Conley’s favor is that Houston is allowing over 300 yards passing on the road this year and fellow Jag receiver Dede Westbrook is questionable after being removed from last Sunday’s game.

Take the Over on Conley’s receiving yards on any total below 60 yards.

GONE IN 30 MINUTES

The Buffalo Bills bandwagon blew a tire last week with their loss to the Philadelphia Eagles and now have the Redskins on tap for Week 9. Many are starting to worry about the capabilities of their offense as Josh Allen has put up just 558 yards and been out produced by opposing offenses in back-to-back weeks — that includes the Dolphins.

Where the team is struggling the most is putting up points early; specifically in the first half where they sit 26th in first-half points with 8.7. Luckily for them, Washington is even worse in the first 30 minutes, scoring just 6.6 points in the first half and even less (4.3) over their last three games.

With the lowest total of the week at 36.5, take the 1H Under 19.5 points as it could be a cold and windy day in Buffalo.

BETTING ON THE BEST

Lamar Jackson went into Seattle in Week 7 and knocked off the league’s frontrunner for MVP on the back of 116 yards rushing on 14 carries. Jackson is doing things on the ground that have never been done in the NFL, averaging 101 yards on 14 carries and 0.5 TDs over his last four games. This stretch has seen the Baltimore Ravens quarterback go 4-0 Over/Under for his rushing-yard total.

Jackson will have his toughest test this year versus the New England Patriots in Baltimore on Sunday night. The Pats haven’t allowed more than 18 rushing yards to a QB since Week 5, but New England hasn’t faced a talent like Jackson, who leads the league in yards per rush at 6.9 with that number jumping to 7.7 at home.

Buffalo’s Josh Allen ran for 26 yards on five carries and a score in just over two quarters in Week 4 versus the Pats, an indicator that New England can be susceptible to QB running. Grab the Over on Jackson’s rushing total on any number below 73 yards.

SELLING THE SACK STREAK

We are 3-0 in the month of October with our Over sack props and looking to push that streak to four in a game we are expecting to see quarterbacks face down.

The Carolina Panthers have gotten to opposing QBs at a league-best rate of 4.3 sacks per game while also struggling to keep Kyle Allen horizontal, surrendering seven sacks last week and eight in the previous three games.

Tennessee Titans QB Ryan Tannehill won’t fare any better in Sunday’s matchup as the veteran has been sacked nine times in 10 quarters since taking over the starting job.

This total will most likely be set at 6.5 as opposed to the usual 5.5 but is still a recommended play for any bettor looking to change things up. Hit the Over.

SWIMMING WITH FISHES

The New York Jets are bad. That’s not surprising. But opening as 1-point underdogs against the Miami Dolphins is a big slap to the face for Adam Gase’s squad, which has since been bet up to -3.

The New York offense has looked putrid since the Cowboys game, putting up just 15 points and 367 yards in their last two games. Over that same stretch, QB Sam Darnold’s unit has converted 4 of 20 third downs leading to a time of possession of only 24 minutes, which would rank as the worst mark in the league.

As bad as the offense is, the defense might be in worse shape heading into the Dolphins’ game. Middle Linebacker C.J. Mosley is out and defensive captain Jamal Adams seems to have lost his motivation, taking issue with being shopped at the trade deadline and had some choice words for the Jets’ GM

The spread scares us a bit considering the Dolphins’ second-half woes, but this Ryan Fitzpatrick-led offense has a great chance to top its team total of 18.5 points after getting the taste of competitive football over the last two week. Take the Dolphins team total Over 18.5.