NFL Week 4 Game-by-Game Predictions


Sep 27, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; ) Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith (89) celebrates after hits touchdown during the third quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Week 3 is in the books, and the NFL picture is getting clearer and clearer. The good teams are separating themselves from the bad, and the bad teams are getting closer and closer to the first overall pick of the draft. If you missed our weekly Power Rankings, check them out right here. With so many intriguing matchups, let’s get right into our Week 4 game-by-game predictions.

Don’t agree with me? Let me know on Twitter @HoweNFL.

Last Week’s Record: 13-3

Season Record: 32-16

Teams with byes: New England Patriots (3-0), Tennessee Titans (1-2)

Baltimore Ravens (0-3) at Pittsburgh Steelers (2-1)

Thursday 10/1 at 8:25PM EST

This is the hardest game for me to pick this week, solely because Michael Vick is one of the NFL’s most enigmatic quarterbacks. When Vick is hot, he can put the team on his back and win games on his own, but when he’s bad, he can singlehandedly lose football games. However, Pittsburgh will be playing at home, and with Le’Veon Bell behind Vick and Antonio Brown out wide, it’s hard to see the Steelers losing this game, even with Vick at quarterback.

27. 55. Final. 24. 26

New York Jets (2-1) at Miami Dolphins (1-2)

Sunday 10/4 at 9:30AM EST

This game is an absolute must-win for Miami, and I think the Dolphins will pull this win off. Don’t get me wrong; the Jets are easily the better of the two teams (as of now) because they’ve at least shown something this season. Miami is playing ugly football, and Joe Philbin is already on the hot seat. I just see the Dolphins finally clicking on Sunday and taking the Jets out in London, despite the fact that Miami has been downright awful this season. If the Dolphins lose, the Jets could be a serious playoff contender and Philbin could be out of Miami before the season even ends.

Final. 13. 30. 21. 59

Philadelphia Eagles (1-2) at Washington Redskins (1-2)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Philadelphia has a lot of work to do before contending for the playoffs, but this team is set up to win the NFC East. Here’s a ver winnable game for the Eagles in Washington against a Redskins fresh off a disappointing loss to the New York Giants. Philly should take care of Washington in this one; if the Eagles don’t come out with a victory, “the genius,” Chip Kelly, could be dealing with a mutiny on his hands.

New York Giants (1-2) at Buffalo Bills (2-1)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Another very winnable game, this time for the Buffalo Bills, a team looking to make its first playoff appearance in the 21st century. Going 3-1 could be huge for Buffalo, as there will surely be stiff competition for the AFC’s wild card playoff berths. Buffalo already has a legitimate shot at one of the wild card berths, but it will need to beat the winnable teams on its schedule in order to make a potential playoff run.

16. Final. 23. 31. 31

Jacksonville Jaguars (1-2) at Indianapolis Colts (2-1)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Indianapolis may have gotten off to an 0-2 start, but with consecutive games against the Titans (which the Colts won), Jaguars and Texans, the Colts could get to a 3-2 start just as easily as they lost the first two games of the 2015 season. While Jacksonville looks like an improved team from 2014, there is little to no chance that it can knock off a team like the Colts in Indianapolis.

46. Final. 20. 52. 41

Carolina Panthers (3-0) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1-2)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Cam Newton and the Panthers have cruised through the first three weeks of the 2015 season, handily defeating their three opponents who have a combined record of 2-7. And facing a one-win Buccaneers team, the Panthers should be able to extend their undefeated streak to four games. However, come Week 6, the Panthers will have their work cut out for them. A game in Seattle, followed by games against Philadelphia, Indianapolis and Green Bay could cause serious problems for Carolina. For now, however, they should come out of the first quarter of the season with a perfect record.

48. 27. 87. Final. 13

Kansas City Chiefs (1-2) at Cincinnati Bengals (3-0)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

This Chiefs team is much better than its record indicates; with tough losses against the Broncos and Packers, Kansas City is desperate for a win to end this losing skid. However, a tough matchup in Cincinnati could continue the Chiefs’ agony, as the Bengals are on a three-game winning streak and are generally a great home team. Although I think Kansas City could sneak a win here, I’m going to give it to the Bengals.

24. 124. 31. 56. Final

Oakland Raiders (2-1) at Chicago Bears (0-3)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Chicago is in full self-destruct mode, trading away all of its weapons and punting the football with every chance it gets. Jimmy Clausen is no threat at quarterback, and even with Alshon Jeffery now healthy, Chicago figures to put up a fourth consecutive stinker. Oakland could sneakily come out of Week 4 with a 3-1 record; then again, a surprise loss in Chicago would be nothing new for Raiders fans, who have dealt with some extremely frustrating teams for several years.

57. 28. 28. Final. 10

Houston Texans (1-2) at Atlanta Falcons (3-0)

Sunday 10/4 at 1:00PM EST

Atlanta is playing some great football and are one of the most exciting teams to watch in the league. Julio Jones is playing out of his mind, Dan Quinn’s defense has vastly improved against both the pass and the run, and this Falcons team looks talented enough to contend in the wide open NFC South. This is an extremely winnable game for Atlanta, and I expect it to come out of Week 4 with yet another win.

14. 10. 31. 44. Final

Cleveland Browns (1-2) at San Diego Chargers (1-2)

Sunday 10/4 at 4:05PM EST

It looks like the Browns will be sticking with Josh McCown as the starter in San Diego, which is great news for a 1-2 Chargers team desperate for a win. San Diego has a talented roster and good enough coaching for me to believe that they’ll contend for the Wild Card despite a slow start. Here’s a great chance for San Diego to get back on track with a home matchup against a weak opponent; San Diego absolutely has to capitalize on this opportunity if it wants to contend in 2015.

20. 53. 34. 13. Final

Minnesota Vikings (2-1) at Denver Broncos (3-0)

Sunday 10/4 at 4:25PM EST

This could be one of the most interesting games of the week. Here’s a great chance for a fairly strong Vikings team to show the NFL that it’s here to contend. However, playing the Broncos in Mile High Stadium is never an easy matchup, and I think that Denver can hold off Minnesota for the win, regardless of how I feel about Peyton Manning‘s deteriorating arm.

Final. 17. 60. 27. 45

Green Bay Packers (3-0) at San Francisco 49ers (1-2)

Sunday 10/4 at 4:25PM EST

Aaron Rodgers playing against a shaky 49ers defense is a fantasy matchup made in heaven, regardless of whether or not the 2014 MVP is playing in Lambeau field or on the road. Until Aaron Rodgers has his first bad game of the season or suffers an injury, there’s no way I can pick against him. The dude is the best football player of our generation.

Final. 17. 42. 35. 49

St. Louis Rams (1-2) at Arizona Cardinals (3-0)

Sunday 10/4 at 4:25PM EST

While the Rams like to play spoiler within the NFC West every so often, they usually struggle on the road. And because red-hot Cardinals team that looks like it is a legit Super Bowl contender, there’s no picking against Arizona this week. Carson Palmer finally has weapons around him and the Cardinals once again have one of the league’s top defenses. Bruce Arians has to be happy about this year’s Cardinals team.

Final. 13. 51. 34. 32

Dallas Cowboys (2-1) at New Orleans Saints (0-3)

Sunday 10/4 at 8:30PM EST

Dallas’ offense was very impressive in Atlanta, but the defense fell apart. The Saints offense isn’t nearly what the Falcons have in Atlanta, but I also don’t envision the Cowboys scoring 28 points in consecutive weeks. The bottom line of this matchup is that I can’t trust either team, and although the Cowboys have been a good road team and the Saints have been a bad home team, I still like to pick the home team in games like these.

123. 17. 15. Final. 14

Detroit Lions (0-3) at Seattle Seahawks (1-2)

Monday 10/5 at 8:30PM EST

Seattle at home against a struggling 0-3 Lions team–Is there even that much more to say? Russell Wilson and Jimmy Graham finally seem to be putting things together, Kam Chancellor is back and things are all and well in Seattle. Meanwhile, Detroit still desperately needs to see DeAndre Levy return to the field, because its defense is downright awful.

50. 24. 36. Final. 13

Do you agree with these picks? What picks would you change? Let me know on Twitter @HoweNFL. I love talking football, so please, feel free to hit me up!

Next: NFL Power Rankings: Week 3