Seven NFL teams have started out the 2015 NFL season at 3-0, but that number should shrink after Week 4. The New England Patriots have a bye and are guaranteed to remain undefeated, but a few of the league’s top teams face tough matchups on the upcoming schedule.
After the underdogs dominated in Week 2, 10 of the favorites covered the spread in Week 3. No team is favored by double-digits in Week 4, and only two betting lines are less than three points, according to vegasinsider.com.
Below are picks against the spread for every game in Week 4, as well as updated betting odds at Las Vegas casinos.
Baltimore Ravens (-2.5) at Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh has proven to be the better team this season, but it’s hard to pick the Steelers with Michael Vick at the helm. The quarterback is just 6-13 in his last 19 starts, and he only threw for 38 yards while being sacked twice on Sunday. The Ravens’ defense has looked shaky in the last two weeks, but their offense should be able to move the ball, and they are better than their 0-3 record indicates. Pick Baltimore before the line moves to three points.
Prediction ATS: Baltimore
New York Jets (-1.5) at Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins could easily be winless, having lost to the Jaguars and Bills, while needing a fourth-quarter punt return for a touchdown to avoid an upset in Washington. The Jets might not be as good as they looked in the first two weeks, but they still have a top NFL defense. Sam Bradford only threw for 118 yards in New York’s Week 3 loss, and they limited Philadelphia to 3.2 yards per carry. Miami’s 27th ranked scoring offense will have trouble moving the ball, and the Jets should leave London with a victory.
Prediction ATS: New York
Jacksonville Jaguars (+9) at Indianapolis Colts
When the Jaguars lose, it’s usually not pretty. After falling to the Patriots by 34 points, they could be in for another blowout in Week 4. Even though Andrew Luck continues to throw interceptions, he still helped the Colts score 35 points last week. Indianapolis has beaten Jacksonville five straight times by at least 17 points, and Sunday will see that streak extend to six games.
Prediction ATS: Indianapolis
Houston Texans (+6.5) at Atlanta Falcons
The Texans were fortunate to beat the Buccaneers last week, taking advantage of three missed field goals by Tampa Bay. Atlanta could be one of the NFC’s top teams in 2015, and they won’t make the same mistakes that the Bucs did. Ryan Mallett is one of the league’s worst starting quarterbacks, and he won’t be able to keep up with the Falcons’ No.3-ranked offense.
Prediction ATS: Atlanta
Carolina Panthers (-3) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay could hang tough with Carolina, but the three-point spread is too good to pass up. The betting line is small because the Buccaneers are at home, but playing in Tampa Bay might not do much to help Jameis Winston and Co. The Bucs went 0-8 at home last year, and they were blown out by 28 points in their only home game this season. Carolina has taken care of business against three mediocre teams in 2015, and they should do the same in Week 4.
Prediction ATS: Carolina
New York Giants (+5.5) at Buffalo Bills
Buffalo has looked as good as any team in their two wins, and they have a real chance to end the NFL’s longest playoff drought. But the Bills won’t continue to average 33 points per game, and they might lose outright on Sunday. New York could easily be 3-0, and Eli Manning has yet to throw an interception. With Victor Cruz back in the fold, the Giants have a chance to make Buffalo’s defense look less than ordinary.
Prediction ATS: New York
Oakland Raiders (-3) at Chicago Bears
With Jimmy Clausen at quarterback, the Bears are the worst team in the NFL. The Bears were shut out in Seattle, and it’s hard to imagine them having any offensive success until Jay Cutler comes back. Clausen is 1-10 in his career as a starter, and he’s only posted better than a 77.0 quarterback rating in two of those 11 starts. He threw for just 63 yards on 17 attempts in Week 3, and he won’t be able to keep up with an improved Oakland offense.
Prediction ATS: Oakland
Philadelphia Eagles (-3) at Washington Redskins
Despite getting their first win, Philadelphia’s offense is still a mess. Sam Bradford is struggling in Chip Kelly’s system, and 28 other starting quarterbacks have a better passer rating than him. The Eagles are 0-2 as favorites this season, and the Redskins have a win at home.
Prediction ATS: Washington
Kansas City Chiefs (+4) at Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati came close to losing their first game of the season in Week 3, and they could come even closer in Week 4. Andy Dalton has a 121.0 passer rating through three games, and he won’t be able to keep up that pace for long. Before they lost by 10 points to the NFL’s best home team, Kansas City had covered the spread in 14 of their previous 18 road games.
Prediction ATS: Kansas City
Cleveland Browns (+7.5) at San Diego Chargers
Getting more than a touchdown, picking Cleveland is the safest bet. Philip Rivers has thrown at least one interception in each of his last nine games, and his mistakes have made it difficult for San Diego to win big. The Chargers needed to come back from an 18-point deficit to get their only win this season, and they haven’t won by more than seven points in their last 14 games.
Green Bay Packers (-9) at San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco might be the worst team in the NFC West, but they are not going to continue to lose by four scores every week. Green Bay isn’t nearly as good on the road, where they went 4-4 last season. The 49ers managed to beat the Vikings by 17 points in their one home game, and they can keep Sunday’s game within one score. Colin Kaepernick should bounce back from the worst game of his career, and the Packers only beat the lowly Bears by eight points in their one road game.
Prediction ATS: San Francisco
Minnesota Vikings (+6.5) at Denver Broncos
With Peyton Manning’s inability to throw the ball downfield like he used to, the veteran quarterback could struggle against Minnesota’s defense. The Vikings haven’t allowed an opposing starting quarterback to post a passer rating better than 83.0, and their defense against the run has improved since Carlos Hyde’s big game in Week 1. Denver’s rushing attack is the NFL’s second-worst, and Sunday’s game could be a close, low-scoring affair.
Prediction ATS: Minnesota
St. Louis Rams (+7) at Arizona Cardinals
Arizona has been the best team in football this year, outscoring their opponents by an NFL-best 77 points when 22 other teams haven't even scored 77 total points in 2015. They’ve taken advantage of a weak schedule, but their dominance is nothing new. The Cardinals went 6-0 last year with Carson Palmer at the helm, and they’ve covered the spread in eight of their last nine home games. St. Louis ranks last in total offense, and it should be another easy win for Arizona.
Prediction ATS: Arizona
Detroit Lions (+9.5) at Seattle Seahawks
Matthew Stafford and the Lions don’t beat good teams on the road, and they are walking into one of the toughest places for any team to play. Seattle has won their last five home games by double-digits, and their defense shut out Chicago in Week 3. Considering the Lions have the league’s worst rushing offense and Kam Chancellor has returned to the Seahawks’ secondary, points will be hard to come by for Detroit.
Prediction ATS: Seattle
Dallas Cowboys (+3) at New Orleans Saints
With Drew Brees expected to start, the Saints should get their first win of the season. Dallas' defense overachieved in the first two games, and it was exposed against Atlanta. Brandon Weeden was a pleasant surprise last week, but he could come back to earth in New Orleans
Prediction ATS: New Orleans
Season Record: 31-16-1