By: Justin Martinez (@JTheSportsDude)
Week Three Recap
Biggest stroke of genius: Stuck with Tennessee over Seattle
Biggest regret: Placed too much trust in Jay Cutler
I failed you guys.
My goal was to go 13-3 in my week three predictions, and I pulled the written version of the Mark Sanchez butt fumble.
To be fair, even the great Romo-straudamus wouldn’t have been able to predict what went down in week three. The Bears, Jets and Saints won in the same week, which I’m pretty sure means the world is going to end.
But in case it doesn’t, here are our predictions for week four.
Green Bay Packers vs. Chicago Bears
The Bears shocked us all when they came out of week three with a 23-17 win over Pittsburgh. Jordan Howard went full-on Forrest Gump on the Steelers defense, running for 138 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries. But now Chicago is off to Lambeau Field to take on Green Bay, and it’s looking like the Bears’ luck will end there. The Packers remain a tier-one team, especially with Randall Cobb expected to make his return.
Prediction: Green Bay 27, Chicago 13
Los Angeles Rams vs. Dallas Cowboys
Just how good are the Rams? Is Jared Goff legit? Can a man truly get lost in the sauce? The answer to all of these questions: I don’t know. Los Angeles squeaked out a 41-39 win over San Francisco last week. Goff threw for 292 yards and three touchdowns, and Todd Gurley ran for 113 yards and two touchdowns. Both of these performances are good signs for the franchise’s future, but it’s hard to go against the Cowboys at home. Ezekiel Elliott should fair much better in this matchup than he did against Denver and Arizona, and the Rams secondary will struggle to contain the likes of Dez Bryant and Jason Witten. Give me Dallas in a high-scoring affair.
Prediction: Dallas 38, Los Angeles 27
Detroit Lions vs. Minnesota Vikings
Both of these teams should be 3-0 right now. Let’s just start with that. Minnesota’s only loss came at the hands of Pittsburgh while Sam Bradford was out with a knee injury, and Detroit was on the receiving end of a runoff rule as ludicrous as the thought of JaMarcus Russell winning the MVP. Case Keenum will get the nod once again at the quarterback spot for Minnesota, and although he did enough to take down Tampa Bay, Detroit is a whole other challenge. Matthew Stafford has established himself as one of the best quarterbacks in the league, and I expect the Lions to rebound with a hard-earned win on the road.
Prediction: Detroit 28, Minnesota 20
New Orleans Saints vs. Miami Dolphins
Miami lost to the Jets, man.
Prediction: New Orleans 31, Miami 17
Buffalo Bills vs. Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta snuck out of Detroit with a 30-26 win that many consider to be absolute thievery, and now they take on a Bills squad actually looked above average in their 26-16 win over Denver. But there’s a big difference betweeen the Atlanta offense and the Denver offense. Julio Jones is a man amongst boys, and the Falcons should sore in week four. Wow, even I cringed with that pun.
Prediction: Atlanta 34, Buffalo 20
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens
Does anyone know what the frack happened to Pittsburgh and Baltimore in week three? I haven’t seen such high levels of incompetence since Donald Trump’s latest tweet. The Steelers got upset by the Browns, and the Ravens got dismantled by the Jaguars. Only one of these teams will rebound with a win, and like every other time this rivalry goes down, the team with the better running game will come out on top. That’d be Le’Veon Bell and the Steelers.
Prediction: Pittsburgh 17, Baltimore 10
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Cleveland Browns
Ugh, do I really have to write about these two teams? What is there to say? I guess the Bengals deserve some credit for hanging in there with Green Bay, but half-wins won’t keep Marvin Lewis employed. Cincinnati needs victories that aren’t just morale, and hopefully it’ll carry its momentum into a freebie game against Cleveland. But please, Cincinatti, USE A.J. GREEN MORE.
Prediction: Cincinatti 20, Cleveland 13
Tennessee Titans vs. Houston Texans
Raise your hand if you thought Houston actually had a chance against New England in week three. Don’t actually do that though. You’d be lying, and you’d also be raising your hand right now in public and looking like a weirdo. Point is, people were already writing eulogies for the Texans, but DeShaun Watson held his own in the team’s 36-33 loss to the Patriots. The stud rookie threw for 301 yards and two touchdowns, and Houston might’ve won if it weren’t for a spectacular toe-tapping touchdown from Brandin Cooks in the final moments of the game. It’s a performance that gives me some renewed faith in Houston, so much so that I’m taking the Texans over the Titans. Much like every decision ever made by Johnny Manziel, it’s a decision that I know I’ll regret, but I’m going to do it anyways.
Prediction: Houston 24, Tennessee 21
Carolina Panthers vs. New England Patriots
Panthers fans got catfished. Carolina looked to be back to its winning ways after a 2-0 start to the year, but the Panthers got exposed in their 34-13 loss to New Orleans. Cam Newton threw for just 167 yards, no touchdowns, and three interceptions in the blowout. Next up is a New England squad led by the greatest quarterback to ever play the game and the best tight end in the league. The fun is over for Carolina, and this one figures to be a laugher.
Prediction: New England 42, Carolina 28
Jacksonville Jaguars vs. New York Jets
Like most NFL fans, I woke up on Sunday morning to the Jaguars thrashing the Ravens and questioned if I was still asleep or not. Jacksonville demolished Baltimore for a 44-7 win, and Leonard Fournette should have no trouble continuing his impressive rookie showing against a Jets team that already used up all its luck last week.
Prediction: Jacksonville 24, New York 13
San Francisco 49ers vs. Arizona Cardinals
It hasn’t been an easy season for the Cardinals. Arizona has already played Detroit and Dallas so far, but the road gets easier. Next up is a 49ers squad that gets beat more often than the Washington Generals. San Francisco did play well against the Rams in its 41-39 loss, but the Cardinals should still come out on top here. If Larry Fitzgerald can play like he did against Dallas (149 yards and one touchdown), this one won’t be close.
Prediction: Arizona 28, San Francisco 16
Philadelphia Eagles vs. Los Angeles Chargers
You know you’re not wanted when even the mayor of your city said you’d be better off elsewhere. Such is the case for the Chargers. Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti said on Sept. 20 that “I think we could have been happy with just the Rams.” Ouch. That hurts, but not as bad as the beatdown that the Chargers figure to receive from Philadelphia in week four. Carson Wentz is the real deal, the Eagles should win this road match with ease.
Prediction: Philadelphia 30, Los Angeles 17
New York Giants vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
In this week’s episode of The Old and the Restless, 36-year-old Eli Manning attempts to finally get the 0-3 Giants their first win of the season. But things won’t get any easier for New York’s horrendous defense though as they take on a young Buccaneers squad led by freshman sensation Dalvin Cook. DUN DUN DUN DUN. New York will put up a fight, but Tampa Bay will edge out a win at home. Will Eli get his team back on track? Will the Giants contact Peyton Manning and ask for a sibling swap? Tune in next week for all these answers and more in the latest installment of The Old and the Restless.
Prediction: Tampa Bay 31, New York 28
Oakland Raiders vs. Denver Broncos
The Raiders played like all the NBA greats in Space Jam after the Monstars stole their talent. Seriously, it was bad. Washington placed a 27-10 beatdown on the Raiders, and Denver suffered a surprising 26-16 loss to Buffalo. I can’t imagine the Raiders offense will lay an egg in back-to-back weeks, so I’m (hesitantly) taking Oakland.
Prediction: Oakland 24, Denver 17
Indianapolis Colts vs. Seattle Seahawks
Things haven’t been going so well for Seattle and the Legion of Gloom. The Seahawks have yet to flash that championship potential that’s surrounded the team for the past couple of years, and the injury to lead WR Doug Baldwin could keep him sidelined this week. Luckily, the Seahawks are playing the Colts, and this is as good a week as ever to get their season back on track. Jimmy Graham should see an increase in targets as the new No. 1 option, and you can expect Seattle to get the easy win.
Prediction: Seattle 38, Indianapolis 20
Washington Redskins vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Now THIS is how you end a week. The Redskins defense had their way with a high-octane Raiders offense, and Kansas City remains the best team in the league. How much Washington will be able to contain Kareem Hunt will be the deciding factor, and I’m rolling with Hunt. He may be my pick for both offensive rookie of the year and MVP, so I’ll be riding the Chiefs bandwagon once again in week four.
Prediction: Kansas City 28, Washington 21