Week 4 Predictions
Let me take a second to brag… Ok, not really “brag” because last week I really only managed a 9-7 record. It’s how I got that though. To be fair, I kinda sucked with the early games only going 3-7 with the Thursday Night game and early Sunday games, but the first afternoon games (Atlanta vs. San Diego…etc.) began a 6-game streak where I picked each game correctly. That included picking Oakland over Pittsburgh, Arizona over Philadelphia, Baltimore over New England and even Seattle over Green Bay (we will pretend the whole last play controversy didn’t happen for our purposes).
So that means I actually got on a roll and picked games well. Ok, so 9-7 still isn’t much, but I’m happy with progress and improvement. I’ll take the moral victories and as long as Cleveland doesn’t pull off the upset in Baltimore tonight, that moral victory should make it 7 in a row. I say this with complete confidence that I will end up picking under .500.
Thursday, 9/27 – 8:20 pm ET
Cleveland Browns 0-3 @ Baltimore Ravens 2-1
Prediction: Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore is coming off a tough Sunday Night game against New England. Any other opponent and this is a trap game. I expect the Ravens to comfortably beat the Browns at home. Browns QB, Brandon Weeden, should struggle.
Sunday, 9/30 – 1:00 pm ET
New England Patriots 1-2 @ Buffalo Bills 2-1
Prediction: New England Patriots
If Buffalo gets a full game out of backs C.J. Spiller or Fred Jackson, Buffalo has a chance. Outside of that, I think New England takes the win. New England looked good against Baltimore last week despite the loss and I think it carries over to an important win against a division rival.
San Francisco 49ers 2-1 @ New York Jets 2-1
Prediction: San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco should be focused after last week’s slip up against Minnesota and New York should be in trouble with the loss of CB Darrelle Revis for the season. San Francisco should be able to win another impressive road win.
Seattle Seahawks 2-1 @ St. Louis Rams 1-2
Prediction: Seattle Seahawks
I know Seattle shouldn’t have won last week, but their defense is phenomenal. I think QB Russell Wilson will struggle against a much improved St. Louis defense especially on the Rams home turf, but the running game and defense should carry Seattle.
Carolina Panthers 1-2 @ Atlanta Falcons 3-0
Prediction: Atlanta Falcons
Carolina QB, Cam Newton, is dealing with a bit of a sophomore slump. Atlanta is on fire offensively and their defense has been very good. The is in Atlanta. All adds up to an Atlanta win.
Minnesota Vikings 2-1 @ Detroit Lions 1-2
Prediction: Minnesota Vikings
I don’t know what to think about the Vikings. They are much improved over last season, but when you look at their roster, they shouldn’t have beaten San Francisco last week how they did. Was it a fluke or is there something substancial there? While that answer will be determined later, I think Minnesota gets the road win. I can see a bit of a shootout as both defenses have had trouble this season.
San Diego Chargers 2-1 @ Kansas City Chiefs 1-2
Prediction: Kansas City Chiefs
San Diego hasn’t impressed me. Their wins are against Oakland and Tennessee. Last week they took on a very good Atlanta team and were dominated. Kansas City also has been underachieving, but they had a big win against a desperate New Orleans team in New Orleans. I think it’s momentum and it continues into their home contest this week.
Tennessee Titans 1-2 @ Houston Texans 3-0
Prediction: Houston Texans
I think the question here isn’t if Houston will win, but rather how Titans QB, Jake Locker, will look going up against the Houston defense. Locker looked good last week, but Houston’s defense is a different beast compared to Detroit’s. Tennessee just isn’t that good.
Sunday, 9/30 – 4:05 pm ET
Cincinnati Bengals 2-1 @ Jacksonville Jaguars 1-2
Prediction: Cincinnati Bengals
Bengals QB, Andy Dalton, has been on fire in the lasttwo games. Those games are against Cleveland and Washington, but still… Cincinnati’s defense looked incredible at moments last week, but also had moments were they looked worthless. I think the defense continues to get back on track with their matchup against Jaguars QB, Blaine Gabbert. Watch out for Maurice Jones-Drew though. He should have a great game.
Oakland Raiders 1-2 @ Denver Broncos 1-2
Prediction: Denver Broncos
I think this game will be close, but ultimately the Broncos win on Peyton Manning’s arm. Manning has struggled as of late, but Oakland’s defense isn’t the quality of Houston’s or the ball-hawking Atlanta defense. The Raiders, despite coming off a great win against Pittsburgh, are just too inconsistent to pick with confidence.
Miami Dolphins 1-2 @ Arizona Cardinals 3-0
Prediction: Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals defense is absolutely fantastic and while I’m not sold on the offense, Miami’s offense is worse. I think Dolphins QB, Ryan Tannehill, has another rookie performance and makes enough mistakes to give Arizona the win.
Sunday, 9/30 – 4:25 pm ET
Washington Redskins 1-2 @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1-2
Prediction: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
I like the Buccaneers, but thin, Redskins QB, Robert Griffin III will have a solid game. His ability to do so many things make him very difficult to stop entirely. Tampa Bay should have enough offensive firepower to take advantage of a horrible pass defense. The Buccaneers defense should be able to do just enough to stop RG3.
New Orleans Saints 0-3 @ Green Bay Packers 1-2
Prediction: Green Bay Packers
New Orleans is reeling. They appear to be missing their suspended head coach, Sean Payton, desperately and their defense is absolutely terrible. Green Bay is reeling from their controversial loss Monday Night and they haven’t looked as sharp offensively as year’s past. This is the perfect game for them to get back on track.
Sunday, 9/30 – 8:20 pm ET
New York Giants 2-1 @ Philadelphia Eagles 2-1
Prediction: New York Giants
All I can think of when I think about this game is Eagles QB, Michael Vick, on the ground after every play while surrendering multiple turnovers. Philly has turned the ball over more than any other team to this point and Vick has struggled. A confident Giants team built to attack and pressure the QB isn’t what the Eagles need right now.
Monday, 10/1 – 8:30 pm ET
Chicago Bears 2-1 @ Dallas Cowboys 2-1
Prediction: Dallas Cowboys
I have the Cowboys because of their defense. Bears QB, Jay Cutler, can be dominant one game and then worthless the next. I think the Cowboys secondary will be enough to challenge the Bears offense. Watch the Dallas offensive line. They need to play better and if they struggle Chicago can easily take this on.