NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 4


Every week for the rest of the season I will be posting my picks against the Vegas spread. As always, my Green Bay Packer bias will be evident, though at this point in the season that bias only goes so far as the Packers have looked pretty pathetic thus far. For each game, I will also provide a couple bold predictions as well so I can say “I told you  so” when something crazy happens.

Dec 29, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bears running back Matt Forte (22) rushes the ball against Green Bay Packers safety Sean Richardson (28) during the fourth quarter at Soldier Field. The Green Bay Packers win 33-28. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Noon  Games

Green Bay Packers (-0.5) over Chicago Bears: How in the world are we even close to being favored in this game? The Bears, granted they had an ugly week 1 against the Bills, have had a lot of success on both sides of the ball against the San Francisco 49ers and the New York Jets, extremely formidable teams. This is certainly more impressive than a Packers team that got outscored by the Lions’ defense last Sunday. Despite all of this, I have watched us destroy Jay Cutler year after year and I can’t, in good faith, pick the Bears in a pick em’ spread. Last year I had the pleasure of watching one of the most beautiful plays in Packer history.

I say Rodgers throws for 350 yards, and the Packer’ defense continues its upswing. Eddie Lacy will also turn it around, 130 yards on the ground and two touchdowns. This is probably the game that has the best chance to blow up in my face. Packers 31 Bears 24

Nov 4, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans outside linebacker Connor Barwin (98) rushes past Buffalo Bills tackle Cordy Glenn (77) in the fourth quarter at Reliant Stadium. The Texans defeated the Bills 21-9. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Buffalo Bills (+2.5) over Houston Texans: It pains me to pick in favor of E.J. Manuel, but the Texans are not 2.5 points better than Buffalo right now. Manuel throws two INT’s, J.J. Watt has three sacks, but the Bills pull off the win. Bills 20 Texans 14

Sep 21, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) watches from the sidelines during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Detroit Lions (-1.5) over New York Jets: Our loss to the Lions was a lot more pathetic than our embarrassment of a win against the Jets. That’s not the only factor for me here, but it’s the most significant. The best two rush defenses will hold both teams to under 100 rush yards, but Stafford lights up the Jets secondary throwing for 300 yards and three touchdowns. Lions 34 Jets 23

Indianapolis Colts (-7.5) over Tennessee Titans: Appropriately high spread here, despite the two teams having the same record. The Colts are a far better team, and it’ll show. Colts 34 Titans 17

Sep 25, 2014; London, UNITED KINGDOM; General view of Wembley Stadium in advance of the NFL International Series game between the Miami Dolphins and the Oakland Raiders. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Oakland Raiders (+4.5) over Miami Dolphins: London! Here you go, here’s the Raiders and the Dolphins. Have fun with this game chaps. I hate picking the Raiders but 4.5 points is a little high for me to take the Dolphins. Derek Carr gets it going this game, throwing for at least 250 yards and no picks. Dolphins still win, but it’s close throughout. Dolphins 17 Raiders 14

Sep 21, 2014; Charlotte, NC, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (7) hands the ball off during the third quarter against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. The Steelers won 37-19. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Steelers (-7.5) over Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Pittsburgh is not the offensive juggernaut that Atlanta is, but the Bucs defense is bad enough to lose by double digits to both teams. There is no way Carolina gives up 37 points to this team, but the Bucs lose by less than a touchdown. Le’veon Bell rushes for 150 yards, and the Steelers win big. Steelers 30 Buccaneers 14

Aug 22, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens running back Bernard Pierce (30) runs past Carolina Panthers cornerback Drayton Florence (29) at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Panthers (+3.5) over Baltimore Ravens: This is an overreaction by Vegas after the Panthers got stomped on last week by the Steelers. I think they come back here in a close game, and this really seems like a sure thing. Justin Tucker kicks four field goals, but that’s all the Ravens can muster. Carolina 20 Ravens 12

Afternoon Games

San Diego Chargers (-13.5) over Jacksonville Jaguars: Huge spread, not worried. Philip Rivers throws for 300 yards and 2 touchdowns. Blake Bortles struggles, but has two or three “holy crap he might be amazing” plays. Chargers 28 Jaguars 10

Atlanta Falcons (-3.5) over Minnesota Vikings: How is this not a higher spread? This is going to be another thrashing of a significantly inferior team. Matt Ryan throws for 400 yards and 4 touchdowns. To quote one of my favorite videos on the internet, “It’s not my fault we (Vikings) suck at everything.”

Never gets old. Falcons win big, should be a way higher spread. Falcons 41 Vikings 21

Sep 21, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh (L) yells at NFL field judge Bob Waggoner (25) during the second half against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Eagles (+5.5) over San Francisco 49ers: Does Vegas know something we don’t know? Have they watched the first three weeks of football? The Eagles are a far offense than the Niners right now, and it’s not close. I actually think the Niners win this game, but a 5.5 point spread is insane. Colin Kaepernick turns is around, rushing for at least 50 yards and winning the game with his legs in the 4th quarter. 49ers 27 Eagles 24

Nov 10, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) meets with Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo (9) following a win at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Saints defeated the Cowboys 49-17. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Sunday Night Football

Dallas Cowboys (+3.5) over New Orleans Saints: Battle of the terrible defenses! I’m expecting at least 60 overall points to be scored in this game, and I believe the Saints win, but not by enough to cover. Both Tony Romo and Drew Brees throw for over 300 yards. Brandin Cooks becomes the favorite second option besides Jimmy Graham, racking up 130 total yards and two touchdowns. Saints 45 Cowboys 44

Sep 21, 2014; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork (75) celebrates after intercepting a pass in the fourth quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Monday Night Football

New England Patriots (-3.5) over Kansas City Chiefs: I’ll stick to it one more week. THIS is finally the week the Patriots offense gets it going, and Tom Brady goes off for 350 yards. Patriots win big. Patriots 34 Chiefs 17

Thanks for reading, and make sure to come back after the games to tell me how much of an idiot I am. Go Pack Go!