NFL Picks Against the Spread Week 4: Betting Lines That Will Be Compromised

Ryan RudnanskySenior Writer ISeptember 27, 2013

Sep 15, 2013; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning (10) reacts on the sidelines during the fourth quarter of a game against the Denver Broncos at MetLife Stadium. The Broncos defeated the Giants 41-23. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Every week in the National Football League, there are a few betting lines that make you scratch your head.

Week 4 is no different, as a couple of favorites aren't favored enough and one favorite shouldn't be backed at all.

One team lost to the Oakland Raiders by 10 points, but is given too much credit against a team that rocked the former NFC champs a week ago. 

One team that has fallen on hard times is given too much credit against an up-and-coming young defense.

And another team will watch a historic quarterback gash it through the air.

Here are my picks against the spread for Week 4.

*Spreads via Covers.com

 

Indianapolis Colts at Jacksonville Jaguars

Sep 22, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck (12) reacts after rushing for a touchdown against the San Francisco 49ers in the fourth quarter at Candlestick Park. The Colts defeated the 49ers 27-7. Mandatory Credit: Cary
Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Spread: Colts -8

Let me put it this way: If the Oakland Raiders beat the Jaguars by 10 points, I'm pretty sure the Colts can beat the Jaguars by more than eight points.

And you can forget about home-field advantage. The Jaguars lost to the Kansas City Chiefs to open the season in Jacksonville, 28-2. 

The Colts look as strong as they've ever been under Andrew Luck. They defeated the San Francisco 49ers in Week 3, 27-7. Most surprising, the defense looks much better than a season ago, ranked sixth in the NFL in points allowed per contest (16.0). 

On the flip side, Jacksonville ranks 29th in the NFL in points allowed per game. It also ranks dead last in points per contest.

Indianapolis made life miserable for Colin Kaepernick last week. How is Blaine Gabbert going to fare?

That's a rhetorical question, by the way.

There's also this, per Tom James of the Terre Haute Tribune-Star:

Prediction: Colts 27, Jaguars 17 

 

New York Giants at Kansas City Chiefs

Aug 29, 2013; Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid watches against the Green Bay Packers in the second half at Arrowhead Stadium. Kansas City won the game 30-8. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports`
John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Spread: Chiefs -4

This isn't the year 2012, folks.

This is a new season, where teams like the Chiefs dominate and teams like the Giants, well, don't. 

The Giants have allowed 38.3 points per game this season, good for dead last in the National Football League. 

The Giants also rank 27th in points per contest. And we all know what the Chiefs did to Chip Kelly's Philadelphia Eagles in Week 3. 

In the 26-16 victory, Kansas City's young, budding defense exploded, forcing five turnovers while posting five sacks. Eli Manning has eight interceptions already this season, and the Chiefs have notched four picks while ranking third in yards allowed per pass attempt.

This is just a bad matchup, especially at Arrowhead Stadium.

Prediction: Chiefs 30, Giants 17

 

New England Patriots at Atlanta Falcons

Spread: Falcons -2

Sep 22, 2013; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) during the first half of a game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

The Falcons shouldn't even be favored in this matchup.

Atlanta ranks 21st in yards allowed per pass attempt and 23rd in passing touchdowns ceded. 

Yes, Tom Brady and the Patriots' passing attack haven't been as dynamic as it was last season, but it's only a matter of time before one of the greatest quarterbacks who ever lived starts syncing with his receiving corps. He connected with rookie Kenbrell Thompkins for two touchdowns against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week.

Beyond that, in the absence of the injured Steven Jackson in Week 3, Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan went to the air 38 times. Unfortunately for Ryan and the Falcons, the Patriots' pass defense has been much better this season, ranking fourth in the NFL in yards allowed per pass attempt while ceding just two touchdown passes.

Cornerback Aqib Talib has played sound football. Matched up against Buccaneers wideout Vincent Jackson in Week 3, he seemingly got better as the game continued.

The Falcons will put some points on the board, but it won't be enough against Tom Brady and the Patriots.

Prediction: Patriots 27, Falcons 23

 

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