NFL Picks Week 4: Survivor Pool Locks and Games To Avoid

T.J. Mcaloon@@tjmcaloonContributorSeptember 28, 2011

NFL Picks Week 4: Survivor Pool Locks and Games To Avoid

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    Week 4 is almost here and you need to make your Survivor Pool picks soon. This week there are a number of games that could go one way or another. If last week proved anything to us it's that teams that are favored by 10 or more points have as good of a shot of losing as teams only favored by one. 

    But, Week 4 is the end of the first quarter of the 2011 season. Teams are starting to make some separation from each other. The good teams are not just finding ways to win; they're winning games going away. 

    The same goes for those bad teams. They not only find ways to lose games, but they're losing games before the fourth quarter even starts. 

    Take a look at some picks for games that you can feel comfortable picking in your Survivor Pool. And the games that you should avoid. 

Survivor Pool: Buffalo Bills over Cincinnati Bengals

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    Coming off of the big victory over the New England Patriots at home you would think that the Bills could come into this game with a little too much confidence. But, this Bills team has an offense that can fix any shortcomings that the defense may have. 

    Through three games this year the Bills offense ranks fourth in average yards rushing on the year and 11th in average yards passing. This makes up for a defense that ranks 24th in both passing and rushing defense. 

    For the Bengals, they are 1-2 on the year, but their win was against Cleveland. Their losses have come against two sub-par teams in Denver and San Francisco.

    Expect the Bills to put up another 30-plus points this week against the Bengals and go to 4-0 on the season. 

Team To Stay Away From: New York Jets and Baltimore Ravens

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    Both of these teams are 2-1 on the season with very similar paths to their record. Both have victories over potential playoff teams this year. Both teams are made up the same way. Both have young quarterbacks that are still trying to prove themselves to their fanbase. And Rex Ryan has coached for both teams.

    This game will come down to a late field goal from either one of these teams. 

    So you should stay away from these teams in your Survivor Pool.

Survivor Pool: Detroit Lions over Dallas Cowboys

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    It's hard to believe but one of the hottest teams in the NFL is the Detroit Lions. Yes, the same Detroit Lions that went 0-16. Yes, the same Detroit Lions that seems to be on the cusp of being a good team, but end up winning only four to six games and missing the playoffs. 

    Not this year—this year the Lions are 3-0, winning games on the road, coming from behind to win games and striking fear into teams they are coming to play. 

    This week the Lions take on a Cowboys team that is lucky to be 2-1. They had to kick six field goals to beat the Redskins on Monday night. 

    Expect the Lions to win big this Sunday.

Team To Stay Away From: Carolina Panthers and Chicago Bears

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    Who knows which Chicago Bears team is going to show up this week? It could be the Bears from Week 1 against the Atlanta Falcons who dominated on both sides of the ball. Or, it could be Bears from the last two weeks getting beaten by New Orleans and Green Bay. 

    The same goes for the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers finally got their first win last week against the Jacksonville Jaguars. A win that didn't have their quarterback Cam Newton play his best game; unlike his previous two games where he threw for over 300 and 400 yards.

    So, stay away from either team this week.  

Survivor Poll: Green Bay Packers over Denver Broncos

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    If you haven't picked the Green Bay Packers yet for your Survivor Pool, do it now! The defending Super Bowl champion goes into Denver this week to play a team that doesn't have a quarterback, doesn't have a running game, has their top wide receiver hurt and has a defense that ranks 13th and 14th in passing/rushing defense.

    Expect Aaron Rodgers to throw for two to three touchdowns in the first half, while the Green Bay defense shuts down any offense that the Broncos can muster.

    If you have to pick just one team this week in a Survivor Pool, make it the Packers.

    Twitter: @tjmcaloon