NFL Week 4 Winners
[6.6 Units] Chicago Bears (+2.5) at home with Indianapolis Colts
6.6 Units – CHI +2.5 or more
3.3 Units – CHI +2
No Action – CHI +1.5 or less
Nick Foles has been handed the keys to the car and the somehow 3-0 Bears are getting points at home. There's a lot of chatter about the Bears being the worst undefeated team in the league and our data does support that thesis, but they are still a good team in the grand scheme of things. They have been a top-5 defense to start off the season and that shouldn't come as a shock given the plethora of talent they have on that side of the ball. The offense has limped along at almost a bottom-5 in the league level, but made juuuusst enough plays to get them the Ws. Our models have the Bears as favorites to win this game outright by a couple points, so there is a LOT of value taking any points being laid.
[6.6 Units] Jacksonville Jaguars (+3) at Cincinnati Bengals
6.6 Units – JAX +3 or more
3.3 Units – JAX +2.5
No Action – JAX +2 or less
For those of you who think we are crazy putting faith in the Jaguars after last Thursday's no-show, please visit footballoutsiders and check out their Week 4 DVOA ratings as support. We are not the only ones who like what the Jags are doing on offense, as they sit at #7 in offensive DVOA. The Bengals, on the other hand, are ranked 27th per DVOA. As discussed in last week's write-up, the majority of Cincinnati's struggles on offense are a result of their dogshit offensive line. Sacksonville has been pretty quiet up front on D this year, but we still like the matchup of their front-7 against the Bengals O and think this could be a coming out party for them.
[6.6 Units] Miami Dolphins (+6.5) at home with Seattle Seahawks
6.6 Units – MIA +6 or more
No Action – MIA +5.5 or less
TRAP game alert down in Miami for the Hawks. Everyone is all over their dicks right now after their impressive start to the 2020 season, but they aren't without their flaws. Additionally, check out their last practice injury report from Friday... banged up. This is a sleepy 1 o'clock game for the longest possible road team in the NFL...basically a trip to London for a team on the Eastern seaboard. The Hawks got a national game of the week in the afternoon against America's team on Sunday... the Dolphins were home in Week 2, and then played 10 days ago on TNF at Jacksonville...which is basically no travel. So, in terms of rest, prep time, and the motivation factor, the edge goes to the Dolphins. We have Miami as 3 to 3.5-point dogs, so take the extra points and the extra rest. DangeRuss will pull it out at the end, but it'll be under a tuddy.
[6.6 Units] The Washington Football Team (+13) at home with Baltimore Ravens
6.6 Units – WSH +12.5 or more
3.3 Units – WSH +12
No Action – WSH +11.5 or less
Doesn't get any more scary than this. The Ravens got smoked in the spotlight and certainly are looking to get their groove back against a team looking for any flicker of an identity on offense. If our gut was what won us 60% of plays over a half a decade, we would run as fast and as far as we possibly could from this one. That being said, our gut and eyes lie to us, the data carries us when there's only one set of footprints in the sand. We have the Washington's as a top-5 defense and they should continue to improve as the season progresses under Riverboat Ron and the young thoroughbreds get more experience. The Chiefs up and down defense put some great film together for the Washingtons to use as a blueprint. This is a copycat league and the good teams (see: Belichick, Bill) rise to the top over time because they make meaningful adjustments. With only a week to prepare there probably aren't major changes the Ravens can install. Look for the Washingtons to use the exact same defensive game plan as the Chiefs, but with much better talent, to keep this one under two touchdowns.
[6.6 Units] Carolina Panthers (+3.5) at home with Arizona Cardinals
6.6 Units – CAR +3 or more
3.3 Units – CAR +2 or +2.5
No Action – CAR +1.5 or less
Our models have Carolina as about half-point favorites at home in this matchup against the Cardinals. They had an under-the-radar impressive win at the Chargers last week and the public does not seem to have any interest in this squad in 2020. Conversely, everyone wants to be excited about the Cardinals despite them likely ending the season at a very average level. The Cards looked the opposite of impressive against a struggling Lions team last week and potentially not having the guy they throw the ball to 18 times a game isn't going to help. This is the combination of public apathy and excitement that we like to be involved with...take the home dog and watch 'em win the game outright.
[6.6 Units] Minnesota Vikings (+4.5) at Houston Texans
6.6 Units – MIN +4 or more
3.3 Units – MIN +3.5
No Action – MIN +3 or less
The Vikings are a league-average team who has limped out to an 0-3 start. Our models liked them last week (winner!) and not much has changed since then. There was a slight reduction in prep time with the facility being closed on Wednesday, but we don't think that's enough to kick out the overwhelming data supporting backing the Vikes once again vs. the 0-3 Texans. We see this is close to a pick 'em and certainly have enough room to maneuver with 4.5 in the Super Contest and a hook at time of writing (+3.5).
[6.6 Units] Las Vegas Raiders (+3) at home with Buffalo Bills
6.6 Units – LV +3 or more
No Action – WSH +5.5 or less
Has there ever been a football season where the Buffalo Bills don't start out as it being "their year" before things quickly fall apart?? Everyone is dogging the Bears, but the Bills have been living on a prayer for their 3-0 start and we don't see a huge difference in observed performance between them and the home team Raiders. Essentially, this is an even matchup on a neutral field... we have the Bills as about a point better. However, this game is in Vegas...which would mean it's more like a Raiders -2ish spread... not Raiders +3. Those 5-points represent the GreenZone in the most easily identifiable way. Both of these teams will be 3-1 once the dust settles on Sunday...take the free 3 and enjoy!