Hello friends! Week 4 is underway and it’s going to be a strange Sunday for me with no Cincinnati Bengals game to watch. Here’s who will be playing and who you should be betting on!
Sunday, October 2
Indianapolis (-2.5) vs. Jacksonville
LONDON ALERT. This is the first of three London games this season, so keep that in mind. Or don’t. I think the Colts should beat the Jags in London, Jacksonville, Indianapolis, or anywhere else this game could possibly be played. The Jaguars have yet to do anything remotely impressive and are only 1-2 in Wembley Stadium during their stint as a home team during the International Series. Not much of a home field advantage is what I’m getting at here. I think the Jaguars could get to within a touchdown thanks to some garbage time production, but the Colts should be able to hold them off.
Cleveland at Washington (-7.5)
Cleveland found themselves a new identity in Miami: Get the ball in Terrelle Pryor’s hands. Nobody had really tried that during Pryor’s NFL career, but last game he was catching the ball, throwing the ball, playing defense, doing a little bit of everything. It was pretty interesting, and he’s pretty excited about the Browns’ future now that he’s doing everything. I don’t think they’ll win out. But I do think the Browns can beat the spread here against a Washington team that is starting to scratch the surface of what they can do but aren’t quite there yet.
Hue Jackson vs. Jay Gruden is a kind of interesting matchup for Bengals fans. I wonder if that’s why the game will be on in the Cincinnati market.
Buffalo at New England (-4.5)
I’m not picking against the Patriots right now. The Bills are a sneaky bunch so it’s kind of tempting to think they can keep it close here, but picking Rex Ryan over Bill Belichick is like picking Scott Brooks over Gregg Popovich.
Seattle (-2.5) at NY Jets
The Seahawks got back on track last week but Russell Wilson sprained his MCL in the process. The Jets played like poop in Kansas City, and Brandon Marshall, Eric Decker & Darrelle Revis are all battling injuries. Two physical teams with a bunch of banged up people should result in a low-scoring game. I’ll take the Jets here since they’re the home team & Seattle has to travel across the country with a banged-up QB. Even if Ryan Fitzpatrick will probably be less effective.
Carolina (-3) at Atlanta
I see the opposite of Seattle/NY Jets here, a high scoring game with touchdowns left & right. I know Jeremy Lambert is very nervous about this game, and he has every right to be with the way the Falcons offense has performed this season. They haven’t faced a defense anything like Carolina’s, but I can see Julio Jones coming back from his poor performance against the Saints and taking advantage of a young Carolina secondary. Cam Newton & the Panthers will put up some points, but I think the Falcons can keep pace with them.
Detroit (-3) at Chicago
The Bears are pretty terrible and we don’t know whether it’ll be Jay Cutler or Brian Hoyer starting, and we’re not sure it matters. The Lions have been pretty solid outside of that loss to the Titans, and if they want to keep up with Minnesota & Green Bay they have to be able to take care of business on the road and continue their six-game winning streak in their series with Chicago.
Tennessee at Houston (-5)
Speaking of divisions that look a mess. The Texans were the AFC South favorites heading into the season and looked fine the first two weeks, but got hammered by New England last Thursday night & now they’ve lost JJ Watt for the season. Not good. That being said, I still like them coming off of a long week to put up a good amount of points on Tennessee. The Titans haven’t been terrible so far, but I don’t see them going into Houston and coming out with a win. The Texans will win it for JJ and for America!
Oakland at Baltimore (-3.5)
The Ravens are off to a 3-0 start and people are kind of getting excited but not really because they haven’t really played anybody yet. We’re trying to decide whether Oakland counts as somebody or not. Maybe. I see this as a three-point game decided in the final minutes so I’d go with the Raiders here. They do have the superior offense & their defense seems to be getting on track.
Denver (-3) at Tampa Bay
The Broncos are on quite the roll and I can’t see the Bucs putting a stop to that. Trevor Siemian had his coming out party last week in Cincinnati and I think he’ll have another strong showing in Tampa against a defense that’s pretty blah. Jameis Winston has faced some tough defenses so far and this is going to be another one that he might not be able to handle right now.
Dallas (-2) at San Francisco
I have fond childhood memories of the Cowboys vs. 49ers clashes being the most anticipated regular season games of the year & usually being the NFC Championship Game. We’re pretty far away from those days for sure. The 49ers looked like they might be ready to do something in Week 1, then got blown out by Carolina & Seattle the next two weeks when the competition stepped up. Is Dallas on the level of those squads? No. They looked pretty good against those sorry Bears in JerryWorld, but don’t let that performance put too much rose coloring in your glasses. The 49ers defense should be able to step up at home like they did in Week 1.
New Orleans at San Diego (-4)
I see this being a fairly high scoring game due to the lack of defense on both sides. The Saints really need a win here to make Jim Mora’s rant accurate, but they’ve never been known for their road performance. The last time Drew Brees played against the Chargers in San Diego was a 43-17 blowout in favor of San Diego. I don’t see that happening, but I do see the Chargers getting the duke here.
Los Angeles at Arizona (-8)
Vegas still loves them some Cardinals, and I guess the theory here is that Arizona will be PISSED OFF after their humiliation in Buffalo. The Rams have recovered well from their Week 1 yips and are noted for playing ridiculously well in NFC West games, so they’re the smart bet here at this margin.
Kansas City at Pittsburgh (-4.5)
The Steelers got destroyed last week in Philadelphia and will be looking to make some noise on SUNDAY NIGHT IS FOOTBALL NIGHT. I think they come back strong…but I like the Chiefs to at least keep the game close with a pretty solid defensive effort.
Monday, October 3
NY Giants at Minnesota (-5)
I told you all about the Vikings last week, and they even exceeded my expectations with the whooping they put on the Panthers. Their defense is stepping up and dominating teams enough so that the injuries on offense don’t matter as much as they could. They should be able to do the same this week. The Giants’ defense has been better this season, but I think their offense will get frustrated enough that the Vikings should be able to win this one.