PATRIOTS THIS WEEK

Patriots (9-2) at Bills (6-5), 1 p.m. (CBS)

Outlook: The smokin’ hot Patriots are 5-0 on the road but the Bills are a solid 4-1 at home. Must bow to trends, though: New England has simply owned the Bills, going 29-5 since 2000, including five straight road wins.

Spread: Patriots -81/2

Prediction: Patriots, 30-20

GAME OF THE WEEK

Panthers (8-3) at Saints (8-3), 4:25 p.m. (FOX)

Outlook: Here’s a battle for the NFC South lead in the fiercest three-way division playoff race. And Cam Newton vs. Drew Brees? Delish. The Panthers bring a shiny 5-1 road record to the Bayou, where New Orleans is 4-1. And the Panthers have won four straight, while the Saints had won eight straight before last week’s stumble. The Saints handled Carolina 34-13 in Week 3. Same result here but closer. Brees is as good as ever, and finally has dynamic balance in RBs Mark Ingram and rookie Alvin Kamara.

Spread: Saints -41/2.

Prediction: Saints, 34-27

UPSET OF THE WEEK

Eagles (10-1) at Seahawks (7-4), 8:30 p.m. (NBC)

Outlook: MVP candidate Carson Wentz leads the Eagles into maybe the league’s toughest place to play against a Seattle team fighting for a playoff spot. Philly can be first to clinch a playoff berth with a win here, but Seattle, even with its defense injury-depleted, is a huge obstacle. Seattle 21-4-1 in prime-time since 2000, including 13-2 at home under Peter Carroll.

Spread: Eagles -51/2

Prediction: Seahawks, 27-24

OTHER GAMES

n At Dolphins (4-7) over Broncos (3-8), 19-17: As much as I don’t trust the Dolphins’ offensive line, Miami at home vs. an even-more-dreadful opponent is worth the gamble.

n At Falcons (7-4, -3) over Vikings (9-2), 27-23: Vikings have won seven straight but the Falcons have won 4 of 5 and now get RB Devonta Freeman back from a concussion.

n At Bears (3-8, -3) over 49ers (1-10), 20-16: San Francisco is a trendy upset pick because Jimmy Garoppolo is making his first start at QB for the 49ers. But take the Bears at home in a point-shy affair.

n At Packers (5-6, even) over Buccaneers (4-7), 28-23: Jameis Winston is back from a shoulder injury, but Tampa Bay is only 1-5 on the road and Lambeau Field is still an imposing venue, even without Aaron Rodgers playing.

n At Titans (7-4, -7) over Texans (4-7), 24-20: Houston clobbered Tennessee 57-14 in Week 4 but the Texans had Deshaun Watson then. Now they have Tom Savage, who produces more turnovers than a downtown bakery.

n Chiefs (6-5, -3) over At Jets (4-7), 21-17: Another trendy upset pick among the NFL literati, but I think Kansas City will remind us why it was once 5-0.

n At Jaguars (7-4, -10) over Colts (3-8), 24-10: The Jaguars dominated the Colts 27-0 in October and should do it again with that top-tier defense.

n At Ravens (6-5, -21/2) over Lions (6-5), 20-17: Huge game for both teams. I’m starting to really trust Baltimore’s jelling defense, which is good enough, especially at home, to make you (almost) forget how bad Joe Flacco has been.

n At Chargers (5-6, -14) over Browns (0-11), 34-13: Suspended WR Josh Gordon returns to the Browns for the first time since 2014. Cleveland’s only win last year came vs. the Chargers but don’t expect a repeat here.

n At Raiders (5-6, -9) over Giants (2-9), 21-17: The Giants made the NFL’s biggest news of the week by benching QB Eli Manning after 210 consecutive starts, and for Geno Smith!? Give Coach Ben McAdoo a Breathalyzer test. The betting line feels too big, though.

n Rams (8-3, -7) over At Cardinals (5-6), 30-20: The Rams spanked the Cardinals 33-0 in Week 7, which should fire up Arizona as a home underdog. I still like the Rams, comfortably. Jared Goff is percolating behind a solid, steady offensive line.

n Steelers (9-2, -51/2) over At Bengals (5-6), 27-20: Pittsburgh beat its bitter rival 29-14 in Week 7 for its fifth consecutive win in the series; This will be closer and a good one for Monday night. But I really like this matchup for Pittsburgh: Le’Veon Bell vs. a shaky Bengals run defense.

Last week: 10-6 overall, 5-11 vs. spread.

Season: 101-75, 68-98-10

By Greg Cote, Miami Herald