By Joe Caputo
Welcome back. As Week 2, Week 3 was very kind to me, as I’ve posted an 8-4 record in the 2 weeks. Are you not entertained? Well I’ll keep going anyway. Week 4 is a week that features arguably the 3 best teams in the NFL on byes (Seattle, Denver, and Cincinnati) meaning there are a lot of close lines and tough games. Since there are only 13 games this week, I will pick 5, instead of 7, to make my “money bets” of the week. Here we go.
PITTSBURGH (-7.5) v Tampa Bay
“Yay! We beat the Panthers! Now for our bye week… What? We have to play? ALERT! ALERT!” Too late… Pittsburgh does not see this coming. No one sees this coming. The Bucs are going to win this game. Outright. Yea, yea I said that about the Redskins last week too. Hey, I was close, so I’m trying again. There are so many reasons why this 7.5 point line doesn’t make sense, and only a few reasons why it does. Does 1 week really determine a team’s competency? Yea, Pittsburgh blew out Carolina and Tampa got smoked in Atlanta, it was just 1 week. Although many people are putting them in that category, the Bucs are not in Raiders and Jaguars territory. Yea, they have the same record, but exponentially more talent. The quarterback that has lead them to that 0-3 record? Well, he’s not playing. Say what you want about Mike Glennon, but he’s not bad, and he at least has some familiarity with the Bucs’ roster, unlike McCown did. As for the Steelers? Well they’ve played 2 good halves this season, and I’m sure all of you can easily pick them out. The other 4 halves? Outscored 53-15. They’re not that good. What always happens in the NFL when we write a team (with talent) off? They usually surprise us.
My pick: Bucs
OAKLAND (+4.5) v Miami
Though I have them in caps, Oakland actually isn’t home in this game. This game is in London. To be honest, the Dolphins probably don’t mind that. They have one of the worst home-field advantages in the league. To me, last week told us more about the Patriots than it did about the Raiders. I’m still very down on the Raiders, and Miami is coming off two pretty bad losses. They need this one if they want to compete this year, so you don’t have to worry about them sleeping on the Raiders. I usually don’t like the Phins as a favorite, but the Raiders are bad.
My pick: Dolphins
NY JETS (+1.5) v Detroit
I admit, I thought last week would be the Jets’ bounce back, and in many ways I was impressed by their performance. They put themselves in a lot of good positions, just weren’t able to overcome mistakes in key spots. Detroit is coming off a huge win at home over Green Bay, and they are no where close to the same team outdoors (as we saw in Carolina). Generally, when I’ve seen Geno play as bad as he did in Week 3, he tends to bounce back. The Jet run defense will make Detroit one-dimensional, and I think they steal one at home from Stafford and the Lions.
My pick: Jets
SAN DIEGO (-13.5) v Jacksonville
Wake up San Diego. After overcoming a potential letdown last week in Buffalo, can’t you just see the Chargers not even showing up to the stadium on Sunday to play the Jags? No? What about mentally? I don’t remember the last time the Chargers were touchdown favorites, but I bet it didn’t end well. And this is TWO touchdowns. Don’t care that it’s home. Don’t care it’s the Jags. I don’t trust the Chargers giving that many points, especially because the Jags could have some new life with the QB switch to Bortles.
My pick: Jaguars
KANSAS CITY (+3.5) v New England
I think the Pats are in trouble. No, that’s not a knock on Brady… or Belichek. It is a knock on the offensive line. If they couldn’t block the Raiders, who can they block? KC has played a lot better in their last 2 games, making me think Week 1 vs. Tennessee was a bit of a fluke. Home game. Monday night. Arrowhead Stadium. And you’re giving me points? Thanks.
My pick: Chiefs
Vikings, Bucs, Chiefs
$10 bet pays $222