NFL Week 4 Picks

October 4, 2015 on 7:12 pm | In NFL | No Comments

There are a bunch of toss-up games that could go either way on the docket for Week 4.  The picks went good for both my dad, Mike Hatfield, and yours truly Matthew Hatfield during Week 3.  It’ll be tough to duplicate it, but we’ll give it a try.

On Thursday night, my dad had Pittsburgh over Baltimore, while I ended up calling for a 21-13 Ravens win.  Baltimore won 23-20 in overtime with the point spread being the Ravens favored by 3, so it ended up being a push in that regard.

Let’s review the records and give you some quick hitters on the games for Sunday and Monday . . .

Records:
Matthew Hatfield 30-18, 28-20 ATS, 10-2 Locks, 3-3 Upsets
Week 3 – 13-3 SU, 13-3 ATS, 5-0 Locks, 1-1 Upsets

Mike Hatfield:  27-21
Week 3 – 11-5

NY Jets (2-1) vs. Miami Dolphins (1-2) in London . . . This feels like a game that the Dolphins must win in order to keep pace with the improved Jets and Bills as well as defending Super Bowl Champ New England in the AFC East.  However, the Jets lead the NFL in takeaways with 11, four from CB Darrelle Revis, and have given up a league-low 41 points thus far.

Matt Says:  Miami 17-14 (MIA +2.5)
Mike Says:  Miami

Jacksonville Jaguars (1-2) at Indianapolis Colts (1-2) . . . Jacksonville will try to stop a five-game winning streak by the Colts in the head-to-head series and their chances are better than usual with Indy star signal caller Andrew Luck sidelined due to a shoulder injury.  Chuck Pagano and company are looking to save him for their following division matchup, Thursday night against Houston.  Defensively, the Jags are searching for answers as they gave up 51 points to New England the last time out.  Matt Hasselbeck isn’t Tom Brady, but the Colts at home still probably have more firepower minus Luck than the Jags do.

Matt Says:  Indy 24-16 (IND -4)
Mike Says:  Indy

NY Giants (1-2) at Buffalo Bills (2-1) . . . Both offenses were sterling their last time out; the Giants getting seven receptions apiece from Rueben Randle and Odell Beckham Jr. in beating Washington 32-21, while Tyrod Taylor completed 72.4% of his passes for 277 yards and a 3-0TD/Int. ratio in a 41-14 romp of Miami.  The Bills are likely to be without two key playmakers, RB LeSean McCoy and WR Sammy Watkins, due to injury.  That may give Big Blue the upper hand.

Matt Says:  NY Giants 21-16 (NYG +6)
Mike Says:  NY Giants

Carolina Panthers (3-0) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-2) . . . Since Week 1, Carolina has been without stud LB Luke Kuechly, but it hasn’t mattered a ton as the Panthers continue to be tough defensively.  On the back end, defensive back Josh Norman has been a force with 15 tackles, five passes defended, two interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery to earn NFC Defensive Player of the Month honors for September.  Rookie Jameis Winston and the Tampa Bay offense may have a hard time overcome mistakes and getting back to .500.

Matt Says:  Carolina 19-10 (CAR -3)
Mike Says:  Carolina

Philadelphia Eagles (1-2) at Washington Redskins (1-2) . . . As inconsistent as these two teams have been, a win here puts them right back in the NFC East race.  Washington’s defense is giving up an NFC-low 277.3 total yards per game.  It’ll be key that LB Ryan Kerrigan, who has made 38.5 sacks since entering the league in 2011, applies pressure on Eagles Sam Bradford.  The Redskins have yet to intercept a pass on defense.  Bradford will want to take shots deep with Jordan Matthews, Riley Cooper and company.  Controlling the clock with RB’s Alfred Morris and Matt Jones is a must for the Skins.

Matt Says:  Philly 24-21 (WSH +3.5)
Mike Says:  Philly

Oakland Raiders (2-1) at Chicago Bears (0-3) . . . Charles Woodson is like a fine wine; he gets better with age.  To go with his six tackles in last week’s game at Cleveland, he made a game-clinching interception with 38 seconds left to play to secure a 27-20 win for a Raiders team on the road that had previously lost 19 of 20 away from home.  Here’s another road game, and it’ll be a tricky one for the 38-year-old Woodson and his teammates with Jay Cutler returning at quarterback for a struggling Bears team.

Matt Says:  Chicago 27-20 (CHI +3)
Mike Says:  Oakland

Houston Texans (1-2) at Atlanta Falcons (3-0) . . . This year, the Falcons have been down in games, but never out.  All three of their wins have seen them rally in the fourth quarter from deficits, beating the likes of the Eagles, Giants and Cowboys from the NFC East.  While RB Alfred Blue and WR DeAndre Hopkins had big games in last week’s win over Tampa Bay for Houston, the Texans will have their work cut out for them slowing down the tandem of WR Julio Jones and RB Devonta Freeman, who exploded for 141 yards rushing and 3TD’s against Dallas.

Matt Says:  Atlanta 34-17 (ATL -4.5)
Mike Says:  Atlanta

Kansas City Chiefs (1-2) at Cincinnati Bengals (3-0) . . . Not only are the Bengals off to a 3-0 start that saw them survive a 28-24 thriller in Baltimore against their division rival last week, WR A.J. Green was simply dominant with 10 catches for 227 yards and a pair of touchdowns.  The Bengals are looking for their fourth win in a row over the Chiefs in the head-to-head series, but Cincy’s offensive line will have to be up to the task of blocking pass rushers Tamba Hali and Justin Houston for it to happen.  RB Jammaal Charles of KC is third in the AFC in rushing yards, while Cincy’s Gio Bernard is second.

Matt Says:  Kansas City 23-21 (KC +3.5)
Mike Says:  Cincinnati

Cleveland Browns (1-2) at San Diego Chargers (1-2) . . . To me, this is the Lock of the Week.  San Diego seldom ever loses three straight with QB Philip Rivers, and it happening at home against a Browns team coming off a 27-20 loss to Oakland would be a shock.  Keep an eye on two of the league’s more underrated receivers; Kelvin Benjamin for Cleveland and Keenan Allen of the Chargers.  Both can make a game-changing play in this one.

Matt Says:   San Diego 30-14 (SD -5)
Mike Says:  San Diego

Green Bay Packers (3-0) at San Francisco (1-2) . . . Besides worrying about reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and the prolific Packers offense that has seen their quarterback throw for 10 touchdowns without an interception, San Francisco has to contain LB Clay Matthews.  In the past three meetings with the Niners, Matthews has 4.5 sacks.  Furthermore, QB Colin Kaepernick on the other side of the ball has to take better care of the ball than he did against Arizona when he threw two pick-sixes.  The positive is that he’s won all three starts against Green Run with a 101.3 QB rating, 301 yards rushing and 2TD’s.

Matt Says:  Green Bay 31-12 (GB -7.5)
Mike Says:  Green Bay

St. Louis Rams (1-2) at Arizona Cardinals (3-0) . . . To me, this game comes down to pass rush and pass protection.  Arizona will try to keep QB Carson Palmer upright so that their offense, which leads pro football in scoring with 126 points to this point, continues to hum.  Larry Fitzgerald has been a major force the last two weeks, and for that to continue, the Cards’ o-line has to give Palmer time to find him.  St. Louis is tied for the league lead in sacks with 13 as DT Aaron Donald and Robert Quinn have combined for 6.5.

Matt Says:  Arizona 24-20 (STL +7)
Mike Says:  Arizona

Minnesota Vikings (2-1) at Denver Broncos (3-0) . . . It didn’t look great for Minnesota after a Week 1 road loss in San Francisco, but Mike Zimmer’s Vikings have bounced back with consecutive wins, including a 31-14 victory over San Diego where RB Adrian Peterson ran for 126 yards and a pair of scores.  Only Barry Sanders has more touchdown runs of 40 yards or longer with 20 than Peterson’s 16.  Denver’s defense came up with four sacks and three takeaways in doubling up Detroit 24-12 on Sunday Night Football on NBC, providing QB Peyton Manning and the Broncos’ offense the necessary support it desires.

Matt Says:  Denver 20-14 (MN +7)
Mike Says:  Denver

Dallas Cowboys (2-1) at New Orleans (0-3) . . . For a while, it appeared that QB Drew Brees would not play for the Saints in this one, but word now is that he’ll return after missing their Week 3 loss to Carolina.  With the Panthers and Falcons both off to undefeated starts, this is clearly a must-win at home in front of a prime-time, nationally-televised audience if New Orleans has any sights on going to the playoffs this year.  Joseph Randle ran for 3TD’s in last week’s loss to Atlanta for the Cowboys and they’ll bank on him to deliver against a Saints defense giving up 397 total yards per game.

Matt Says:  New Orleans 24-23 (DAL +3)
Mike Says:  New Orleans

Detroit Lions (0-3) at Seattle Seahawks (1-2) . . . Even though the Lions are winless, QB Matthew Stafford is second in the NFC in passing yards with 814.  The matchup between WR Calvin Johnson and CB Richard Sherman should be one watched all night long as two of the very best players at their respective positions square off on ESPN’s Monday Night Football.  With the return of safety Kam Chancellor last week, the Seahawks showed why their star-studded secondary earned that ‘Legion of Boom,’ moniker, blanking Chicago 26-0.  Look for Russell Wilson and the offense to shine this time.

Matt Says:  Seattle 35-20 (SEA -9.5)
Mike Says:  Seattle

Matt Hat’s Hits:
LOCKS – San Diego -5, Under 42.5 in Miami/NY Jets, Atlanta -4.5, Carolina -3 and Green Bay -7.5
UPSET SPECIALS – NY Giants SU & +6 and Kansas City SU & +3.5

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