NFL: Week 4 Picks Against The Spread
NFL Picks Against Spread -- Week 4
This week's lines seemed very odd. The fact that stands out most is that there are eight home underdogs. There is no telling the kind of motivation that a team will gain when they are taken lightly by the oddsmakers. What is even more peculiar is that two of the away teams getting points have no wins this season. It looks like bizarre lines to go along with this bizarre season.
This week does not see many marquee matchups. Luckily for NBC and ESPN, the best-looking games seem to be the Sunday Night and Monday Night game. Although the games may look like easy picks on paper, Las Vegas always knows what it is doing.
Last week, the Cleveland Browns won outright after trading quite possibly their best player, the Miami Dolphins beat the Atlanta Falcons when they were "supposed" to get shellacked, the Carolina Panthers made the New York Giants look like the worst team in the NFL, the Cincinnati Bengals had a furious rally to come back against the Green Bay Packers, and the Tennessee Titans beat the San Diego Chargers on a last-second touchdown. Let's just say predictability isn't the NFL's strong suit.
Hopefully these picks can help you out when you are looking to win your office pool. The spreads seem to be extra confusing this week. Just relax, take a deep breath and let yours truly help you through your picking process.
Last Week's Record: 9-7
This Season's Record: 24-22-2Nick Villano is the New Jersey Devils writer for Rant Sports. He also adds to their NFL and MLB content. You can follow him on Twitter here.
Chicago Bears @ Detroit Lions (-3.5)
These two teams are coming off wins against winless teams that everyone expected to be better. Does that make these teams good? The Chicago Bears' defense is still scoring at record rates, but the Detroit Lions are getting a healthier Reggie Bush, and Calvin Johnson will prove to be too tough. Chicago 21 -- Detroit 31
Baltimore Ravens (-3.5) @ Buffalo Bills
It seems like the whole "Buffalo Bills are good" train has gone by the wayside. A loss to the New York Jets will do that to you. The Baltimore Ravens are coming off a very good win against Houston. It looks like the Ravens are trending upward while the Bills trend downward. Expect more of the same. Baltimore 27 -- Buffalo 16
New York Giants @ Kansas City Chiefs (-4.5)
The Giants are 0-3. The Kansas City Chiefs are 3-0. You would expect this line to be much higher, but the Giants have the whole "they have been good before so they must be better than this" aura about their team. While they probably aren't as bad as they look, they cannot be picked until they stop their turnover problem. Expect the Chiefs to double last year's win total in four weeks. New York 20 -- Kansas City 31
Seattle Seahawks (-2.5) @ Houston Texans
How do you rate the Seahawks? They are seriously unbeatable at home, but seem mediocre on the road. The Texans have a ton of questions that need to be answered themselves. This one could go either way, but if San Francisco wins on, Thursday there will be an extra edge for the Seahawks. Go with one of the best teams in football. Seattle 20 -- Houston 16
Indianapolis Colts (-8.5) @ Jacksonville Jaguars
You know it is bad when the home team is giving away free beer to try to get people to come see their team. Every single Jacksonville Jaguars line needs to be at least 10 points. If it isn't, take the other team. Indianapolis Colts 31 -- Jaguars 20
Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5) @ Minnesota Vikings
A tale of two disappointments will happen on Sunday in Minnesota. The Steelers and the Vikings came into this season with certain expectations, and both have severely underachieved. Expect Pittsburgh to get their first win, but they won't cover. Pittsburgh 22 Minnesota 20
Cincinnati Bengals (-4.5) @ Cleveland Browns
The Bengals and the Browns are both coming off of thrilling Week 3 wins. The Bengals looked like they were ready to be considered one of the better teams in the league, and the Browns were showing that the front office they weren't just going to roll over and die. The Browns seemed more likely to be a one week thing. Go with the Bengals. Cincinnati 41 -- Cleveland 17
Arizona Cardinals @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2.5)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers find themselves in the news all week after they benched incumbent starting quarterback Josh Freeman. The Arizona Cardinals have an underrated secondary that includes one of the best corners in the game in Patrick Peterson. Expect a comeback performance by Carson Palmer and the Cards. Arizona 30 -- Tampa Bay 10
New York Jets @ Tennessee Titans (-3.5)
These two teams looked like two of the worst in the NFL. They are two or three plays apiece away from being a combined 6-0. It should be a surprisingly good matchup. Geno Smith is very good on every day that isn't Thursday. Jake Locker looks like he is coming into his own (finally). When the game is this close, take the points. New York 21 -- Tennessee 20
Washington Redskins (-3.5) @ Oakland Raiders
I wonder if Terrelle Pryor knows who he is play this week yet. The Oakland Raiders quarterback took a pretty vicious hit Monday that concussed him. He seems like he is going to play, but that injury is a huge question mark across this game. The Redskins are dealing with their own quarterback injury, as Robert Griffin III is coming back slowly from last season's knee injury. The Redskins can't, and won't let this game get away. Washington 27 -- Oakland 21
Dallas Cowboys (-2.5) @ San Diego Chargers
The Dallas Cowboys are coming off the kind of performance we have expected from them, but they never seemed to deliver. Can they continue with the trend? Will Philip Rivers continue his 2013 comeback tour? Take the Cowboys in a shootout, because what other way could this go? Dallas 41 -- San Diego 38
Philadelphia Eagles @ Denver Broncos (-11.5)
The Denver Broncos are the very best team in the NFL. Their offense is so good that their defense doesn't even need to show up half the time. They can score on anybody at any time. It is scary good. It isn't a question of who will win, but by how much will they win. Until proven otherwise, always bet on Peyton Manning when you can in the regular season. Philadelphia 20 -- Denver 42
New England Patriots @ Atlanta Falcons (-2.5)
The New England Patriots have held on to win all three games this season. Tom Brady seems to finally be gaining some chemistry with his new receivers. Atlanta is waiting for Roddy White and Steven Jackson to play up to their potential because of their respective injuries. The Aqib Talib-Julio Jones matchup is intriguing. Expect another close one, but home-field advantage will be too much. New England 21 -- Atlanta 24
Miami Dolphins @ New Orleans Saints (-6.5)
The New Orleans Saints are still looking for a running game. This week, they have an extra day to find it. The Dolphins are coming off an upset win against the Falcons. They could take sole possession of first place in the AFC East with a win, but the Saints and the Superdome will prove too much of a foe for Miami. Miami 17 -- New Orleans 28