Sam Farmer's NFL picks for Week 8

Sam Farmer's NFL picks for Week 8
Quarterback Peyton Manning and the Broncos will takes on the Packers in a battle of 6-0 teams on Sunday night. (David Richard / Associated Press)

The Times' NFL writer, Sam Farmer, examines this week's matchups. Lines according to (O/U = over/under). Last week's record 10-4 (.714); season 69-36 (.657). Using point spreads with the scores Farmer predicted, the record against the spread last week would have been 5-9 (.357); season 58-44-3 (.569). Buffalo, Jacksonville, Philadelphia and Washington have the week off.



Detroit (1-6) vs. Kanas City (2-5)

in London

Sunday, 6:30 a.m.

Chiefs 23, Lions 17

TV: Channel 11.

Line: Chiefs by 5 1/2. O/U: 46.

The Chiefs are running on fumes after losing Jamaal Charles. But the Lions had a chance to get some traction at home last Sunday and they couldn't. Now having to travel overseas …


Tampa Bay (2-4) at Atlanta (6-1)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Falcons 28, Buccaneers 24

The Times' NFL writer Sam Farmer makes his picks for Week 8 in the NFL.

TV: None. DirecTV: 705.

Line: Falcons by 7. O/U: 49 1/2.

Tampa Bay isn't playing bad. The Jameis Winston-to-Mike Evans combo can produce big plays. Still, the Falcons have more experience at quarterback, and they should be able to win at home.



Minnesota (4-2) at Chicago (2-4)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Vikings 28, Bears 20

TV: None. DirecTV: 706.

Line: Vikings by 1. O/U: 42.

Minnesota is poised for a good second half of the season. The Vikings should be able to run all over Chicago, taking control of the game with Adrian Peterson and a solid Mike Zimmer defense.


Arizona (5-2) at Cleveland (2-5)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Cardinals 27, Browns 17

TV: None. DirecTV: 707.

Line: Cardinals by 4 1/2. O/U: 46 1/2.

The Cardinals have hit a rough patch, and they've made a lot of mistakes lately. The Browns are capable of turning in a good defensive performance, but they're banged up at QB and are limping along.


NY Giants (4-3) at New Orleans (3-4)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Giants 31, Saints 24

TV: Channel 11. DirecTV: 708.

Line: Saints by 3. O/U: 48 1/2.

This could be a shootout. The health of Odell Beckham Jr. is an issue for the Giants, but Eli Manning figures to do well in a New Orleans homecoming. How real are the Saints? We'll see.


San Francisco (2-5) at St. Louis (3-3)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Rams 24, 49ers 20

TV: None. DirecTV: 709.

Line: Rams by 8 1/2. O/U: 39.

Should be close. The 49ers are up and way down. The Rams have Todd Gurley, and he should be able to carry them, but they need to generate a passing game if they're going to open the running lanes.


San Diego (2-5) at Baltimore (1-6)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Chargers 28, Ravens 21

TV: Channel 2. DirecTV: 710.

Line: Ravens by 3. O/U: 50 1/2.

Considering the way the Chargers looked last Sunday, it's tempting to take Baltimore. But Philip Rivers is putting up some staggering numbers, and he should be able to shred that Ravens secondary.


Tennessee (1-5) at Houston (2-5)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Titans 21, Texans 17

TV: None. DirecTV: 711.

Line: Texans by 4. O/U: Off the board.

The Texans haven't been close to firing on all cylinders, and now they've lost running back Arian Foster for the season. The Titans are banged up, but they're playing harder than Houston.


Cincinnati (6-0) at Pittsburgh (4-3)

Sunday, 10 a.m.

Bengals 27, Steelers 23

TV: None. DirecTV: 712.

Line: Steelers by 3. O/U: 50 1/2.

The Steelers have been waiting for the return of Ben Roethlisberger, but he doesn't figure to be 100% mobility-wise, and he tends to play the Bengals better in Cincinnati anyway.


NY Jets (4-2) at Oakland (3-3)

Sunday, 1 p.m.

Jets 24, Raiders 20

TV: None. DirecTV: 713.

Line: Jets by 2 1/2. O/U: 45.

Both these teams are playing hard. The Jets are for real, and they know they have to bounce back after losing at New England last weekend. Todd Bowles will have his team ready, but this will be close.


Seattle (3-4) at Dallas (2-4)

Sunday, 1:15 p.m.

Seahawks 24, Cowboys 21

TV: None. DirecTV: 714.

Line: Seahawks by 6. O/U: 41.

Without Tony Romo, Dallas has been in week-by-week tailspin. Matt Cassel took more risks than Brandon Weeden and the turnovers followed. Seattle's defense should be able to capitalize.


Green Bay (6-0) at Denver (6-0)

Sunday, 5:30 p.m.

Packers 27, Broncos 20

TV: Channel 4.

Line: Packers by 3. O/U: 46.

As outstanding as Denver's defense is, Aaron Rodgers should still be able to move the ball. Peyton Manning just hasn't been Peyton Manning this season, so go with the hotter quarterback.


Indianapolis (3-4) at Carolina (6-0)

Monday, 5:30 p.m.

Panthers 28, Colts 20


Line: Panthers by 7. O/U: 46.

he Panthers have their weaknesses, but they're much better than Indianapolis, and that Carolina defense can get to Andrew Luck. This will be a solid victory by Carolina on a national stage.