Haven’t you heard? SportsBettingDime.com has partnered with Super Bowl champion Antonio Pierce for our “Out-Pick A Pro” contest. Antonio will be making six NFL picks against the spread each week. All you have to do is summon the courage to take him on by offering your picks in those same games, earning you the opportunity to win some great weekly prizes, as well as our grand prize of a trip for two to the 2018 Pro Bowl in Orlando, Florida.
Antonio got roughed up a little in Week 8, posting a mediocre 3-3 record against the spread. But the Super Bowl champ still sits at a very respectable 10-8 on the season. Here’s who he likes in Week 9.
Los Angeles Rams at New York Giants (+3.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: RAMS (-3.5)
Playing without some of their biggest offensive stars was hard enough for my Giants, but now their defense takes a major hit with Janoris Jenkins’ indefinite suspension. Without the Jackrabbit out there to lock down one side of the field, Sean McVay’s offense will be able to put up enough points to cover this spread.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints (-7.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: SAINTS (-7.5)
The New Orleans Saints offense has found great balance and is running like a well-oiled machine; Drew Brees is going to pick apart a Buccaneer defense that continues to bleed yards. Meanwhile, Jameis Winston is not healthy and the Saints are actually playing a little bit of defense now, too, allowing 17 points or less in four of the last five games.
Cincinnati Bengals at Jacksonville Jaguars (-4.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: JAGUARS (-4.5)
The Cincinnati Bengals offense relies solely on AJ Green to make all their plays. However, they’ll need someone else to step-up this week, since Green will be locked down by Jalen Ramsey and AJ Bouye: the corners of the best pass defense in the NFL. Joe Mixon has the ability to make plays, but the terrible offensive line in front of him doesn’t let him. Leonard Fournette and the Jacksonville offense will wear down the Bengals by controlling time of possession.
Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers (-2.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: FALCONS (+2.5)
It’s going to be a big adjustment for Cam Newton after the team traded away their top receiver, Kelvin Benjamin. Without the big man on the outside, and Greg Olsen still out of the lineup, Atlanta will be able to focus on stopping Carolina’s ground game. With a little less pressure on them to score in bunches, Matt Ryan and the Falcons will get the ball moving.
Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers (+2.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: CARDINALS (-2.5)
Jimmy Garoppolo is going to make a huge difference under center for the San Francisco 49ers, but that time likely won’t come until Week 12. For now, Kyle Shanahan has to roll with CJ Beathard, who has helped the offense turn the ball over five times in the last two weeks. Though Drew Stanton doesn’t instill a ton of confidence in me, it’s more than I can say about Beathard.
Washington at Seattle Seahawks (-7.5)
PIERCE’S PICK: SEAHAWKS (-7.5)
The two receivers Kirk Cousins trusts most right now — Jamison Crowder and Jordan Reed — are both questionable to play in Seattle. Washington’s offensive line is banged up, too, and will get exposed by the Seahawks’ pass-rushers. You’ll also see a lot of points out of Russell Wilson and the Seattle offense now that they have a legitimate left tackle protecting Wilson’s backside.