Buffalo Bills (4-4) at Seattle Seahawks (4-2-1)
The Seahawks are 4-2-1, but rank just 14th in first down percentage differential. Their defense has been great, as they’ve allowed the 5th lowest first down percentage against, but their offense has been a major problem, as they rank just 29th in first down percentage. This is despite the fact that they’ve played arguably the easiest schedule in the NFL thus far, as they rank dead last in opponent’s strength of schedule thus far this season. Their only two wins by more than 2 points came against the Jets and 49ers, two of the worst teams in the NFL. The Bills are 4-4 and far from a pushover, entering 17th in first down percentage differential; they’re an obvious step up from the 49ers and Jets.
The Bills also enter this game much healthier than the Seahawks. The Bills are still missing talented wide receiver Sammy Watkins with a long-term injury and will be without talented defensive tackle Marcell Dareus this week, after he reinjured himself in his season debut last week, but neither of those guys have been on the field much at all this season, so the Bills have largely been playing without them thus far. They also get back starting running back LeSean McCoy, after he missed one game and was limited in another with a hamstring pull.
The Seahawks, meanwhile, are missing two of their best defensive players again, as defensive end Michael Bennett and safety Kam Chancellor remain out after missing last week’s loss in New Orleans. Their defense was far from as good as normal last week without those two. Given how bad their offense has been this season, the Seahawks can’t afford to be without those two key players on defense. Given their injury situation, this line is way too high at 7. The Seahawks are also in a tough spot, as they have to turn around and go to New England next week, just 6 days after this relatively easier Monday Night Football matchup. The early line has them as 7.5 point underdogs in New England and teams are just 49-87 ATS as 6+ point favorites before being 6+ point underdogs since 2002. The Bills are my Pick of the Week at 7 and I like them even if this line moves down to 6 or 6.5.
Seattle Seahawks 20 Buffalo Bills 17
Pick against the spread: Buffalo +7
Confidence: Pick of the Week