Welcome to the Thursday edition of the Pick Six newsletter!
If you love cats and cheese, then tonight is your night because the Lions and Packers will be facing each other on "Thursday Night Football." Although Matt LaFleur has done a pretty solid job during his time in Green Bay, he's never won a Thursday night home game (0-2), so he'll be looking to get that monkey off his back.
The Lions are currently a 2-point favorite for tonight's game. If the Lions close as the favorite, it will mark just the THIRD time since 1992 that Detroit has been favored to win at Lambeau.
As usual, we'll be previewing tonight's game with some picks and best bets plus, we'll have the latest on Taylor Swift, who apparently has some big plans for this weekend. As far as Taylor goes, look, this is still an NFL newsletter right now, but I'm not going to make any promises going forward. There's a 40% chance that this could be a Taylor Swift newsletter by the end of next week.
As always, here's your daily reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the newsletter. It's the perfect gift to get for your favorite football-loving friend at the start of the season. To get them signed up, all you have to do is click here.
1. Today's show: Two former NFL players break down the latest news
During Thursday's show, they covered a multitude of topics, including what the Jets should do at quarterback. Quinn used to play quarterback in the NFL and Douzable used to play for the Jets, so you're not going to get a much better perspective on the drama in New York than you will with these guys.
According to at least one report, the Jets defense is getting frustrated at the fact that Robert Saleh keeps defending Zach Wilson. Douzable said the defensive players on the team have a right to be frustrated because of how well they're playing.
"When you go up there and give up 15 points and lose the game, it's very frustrating," Douzable said. The Jets loss to the Patriots 15-10 in Week 3 in a game where the offense did almost nothing.
Quinn thinks Wilson has lost his confidence and that it will be difficult for him to get that back.
"He doesn't have confidence in throwing the football," Quinn said. "Once you lose your confidence in the NFL, it's hard to get it back, especially in a big market like New York and it's hard to do what your job requires and that's to make confident decisive decisions in three to three-and-a-half seconds."
Although the defensive side of the ball is frustrated, Quinn said Saleh is doing the right thing by showing support for Wilson. Quinn pointed out that if any other player was struggling, they would want their head coach to support them and not throw them under the bus.
"I would think every player in the locker room would hope their head coach would support him like Robert Saleh has," Quinn said.
If you want to hear everything Quinn and Douzable had to say about the Jets QB situation, then be sure to click here so you can listen to today's episode. The two also broke down the three undefeated teams, plus they made some predictions for tonight's game between the Lions and Packers. You can also watch today's episode on YouTube by clicking here.
2. Thursday night preview: Prepping you for Lions at Packers
With the Bears and Vikings both sitting at 0-3, it's starting to look like the battle for the NFC North is going to be a two-horse race this year between the Packers and Lions. For that reason alone, this is a huge game tonight.
My good buddy Jared Dubin put together CBS Sports' deep-dive preview for this game, and here's how he sees the things playing out:
- Why the Lions can win: The Lions offense could go off in this game. Although the Packers defense has looked solid through three weeks, you could easily attribute that to the fact that Green Bay has faced Justin Fields, Desmond Ridder and a combo of Derek Carr and Jameis Winston. Not only will Jared Goff be the best QB they've faced so far, but he also has a lot of weapons. The Packers are going to have trouble covering Amon-Ra St. Brown in the slot and if they use too many resources trying to stop him, that should open up things for rookie tight end Sam LaPorta. If the Lions offensive line can protect Goff, he could put up some big numbers.
- Why the Packers can win: This seems simple, but if Jordan Love can get off to a hot start, that will go a long way toward helping the Packers win. The problem is that he hasn't been able to do that just yet. Through the first three weeks, Love has completed just 47.8% of his passes in the first half (21 of 44). Due to those struggles, the Packers are averaging just 6.7 points in the first half of each game this season. The Packers will also need a huge performance from their defense, because if this game turns into a shootout, that's not going to be a good thing for Green Bay.
If you're thinking about betting on the game, Tyler Sullivan put together a full gambling preview.
- ONE PROP Tyler LIKES: Sam LaPorta OVER 42.5 receiving yards (-133): "This is a popular play as LaPorta has started to emerge as a top pass-catching option for Goff. The rookie is coming off of his best game of the season where he hauled in eight passes for 84 yards. He's gone over this number in his previous two games and his role within the offense only seems to be going up."
- ONE PROP I LIKE: Riley Patterson OVER 6.5 points (-110): If you read this newsletter regularly, then you know I only hand out kicker props, and right now, the primetime kicker prop is on the verge of putting my 3-year-old through college. Through three weeks, the kicking prop is 7-0, which means we're going for eight straight tonight and we're doing it with Riley Patterson. Patterson has gone over this number in each of the past two weeks and if you combine that with the fact that I think the Lions will be able to move the ball on Green Bay's defense, he should be able to hit the over here.
You can. Finally, if you're wondering who we're picking, here's who we have tonight:
Dubin's pick: Lions 24-20 over Packers
Sullivan's pick: Packers 23-21 over Lions
My pick: Lions 24-17 over Packers
Over on our CBS Sports picks page, the majority of us are picking the Packers with five of our eight experts expecting Green Bay to pull off the upset. You can see our picks for this game, along with all of our Week 4 picks, here.
3. Hot seat rankings after Week 3: NFL coaches who could soon be out of a job
It's not easy to be on the hot seat after just three games, but several NFL coaches have managed to pull that off this year. With the start of Week 4 kicking off tonight, we thought now would be the perfect time to take a look at who's sitting in the hottest seat.
With that in mind, Jeff Kerr unveiled his first hot seat rankings of the season and we're going to look at the five coaches who made his list.
- 1. Matt Eberflus (0-3 Bears)
- 2. Brandon Staley (1-2 Chargers)
- 3. Josh McDaniels (1-2 Raiders)
- 4. Sean Payton (0-3 Broncos)
- 5. Ron Rivera (2-1 Commanders)
If you want to know why each of these coaches made the list, you can read. The most interesting part of these hot seat rankings is that someone's seat is likely going to catch on fire this week. The 0-3 Bears will be playing the 0-3 Broncos and the losing coach in that game is going to have a seat that's so hot, he might not want to ever sit down again.
4. 2024 NFL mock draft: Cardinals and Bears could end up with the top four picks
The 2024 NFL Draft is still seven months away, but we're going to take a look at a mock draft today and that's mainly because we could see something wild next April. At the rate things are going, there's a good chance that the Cardinals and Bears could end up holding the top-four picks in the draft.
The Cardinals will have their own pick plus Houston's 2024 first-round pick while the Bears will have their own pick, plus Carolina's 2024 first-round pick. With that in mind, let's check out the top-four picks on Josh Edwards' mock draft.
(Note: The draft order below was determined using Caesars Sportsbook's Super Bowl odds, but in reverse order).
- 1. Cardinals (via Texans): QB Caleb Williams (USC). "Kyler Murray should make his return to the field in the coming weeks and that will inform us on Arizona's decision should they get the No. 1 overall selection. He has a lot to prove for the Cardinals not to take Williams with the first overall selection."
- 2. Cardinals: WR Marvin Harrison Jr. (Ohio State). "Arizona gives Caleb Williams a tall boundary option in the form of Harrison Jr. to go along with quicker athletes like Hollywood Brown and Rondale Moore."
- 3. Bears: QB Drake Maye (North Carolina). "Justin Fields' confidence has been shaken and there is a clear disconnect between he and the coaching staff. They opt to go in another direction."
- 4. Bears (via Panthers): OL Olumuyiwa Fashanu (Penn State). "Fashanu gives Chicago more scheme versatility at the left tackle position. The offensive line has been an issue for years so the emphasis on improving the starting five continues."
The Bears are one of the worst teams in the NFL this year, but the light at the end of the tunnel for Bears fans is that their team could very well end up with two of the top four picks. As for Cardinals fans, Jonathan Gannon already has the team going in the right direction and getting two top-four picks would be huge for his young team.
If you want to check out Josh's full mock draft, which includes four quarterbacks being selected in the first round,.
5. Your daily Taylor Swift update
I don't want to let down all the Swifties who signed up for the newsletter this week, so yes, we're going to talk about Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce today.
So what's the latest on this duo? Here's what's happened over the past 24 hours.
- Taylor is expected to attend Chiefs-Jets game on Sunday. After attending one Chiefs' game, it seems that Taylor Swift is now addicted to football. According to Front Office Sports, Taylor will be in attendance on Sunday at MetLife Stadium when the Chiefs play the Jets. If she's still a football fan after watching the Jets offense play for four quarters, then I think her fling with Travis might last. You can .
- Patrick Mahomes confirms he met Taylor at the Week 3 afterparty. By now, you've probably heard that Kelce and Swift rented out a restaurant after the Chiefs beat the Bears on Sunday. Apparently, that's where Mahomes . "Yea I met her. She's really cool. Good people," Mahomes said, via KSHB 41 in Kansas City. "But like Trav said, imma let them have their privacy and just keep it moving."
- Taylor and Travis seemed to snuggle up at the party. I don't think we've ever used the word 'snuggle' in the newsletter, but we're doing it today. Someone sent TMZ a photo of the pair that was taken at Sunday's postgame party and they definitely look cozy (You can see the photo here).
- Travis probably won't have much more to say about the relationship. The Chiefs tight end does a weekly podcast with his brother, and during this week's episode, he did share some information about how things went with Swift after Kansas City's Week 3 games (You ). However, it doesn't sound like Travis is going to be sharing very much going forward "I sure as hell enjoyed this weekend," Travis said. "So everything moving forward, I think talking about sports and saying 'alright now' will have to be kind of where I keep it."
- How did Travis and Taylor even get together? If you've been wondering the answer to this question, I have some good news: We have the answer. Shanna McCarriston took a look at how all of this started and it goes all the way back to June, when Travis decided to shoot his shot. For .
So will you be getting Taylor Swift updates every day? I have no idea, but I'm not going to rule it out.
6. Extra points: Rams hoping Cooper Kupp can return in Week 5
It's been a busy 24 hours in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you.
- Rams circling Week 5 for Cooper Kupp return. The Rams receiver started the season on IR, which means he has to miss the first four games. The Rams' fourth game is this week, which means Kupp can return next week when the Rams host the Eagles. According to coach Sean McVay, the that he'll be able to play against Philadelphia.
- Jaguars banged up heading to London. The Jaguars could be down two starters this week. Linebacker Devin Floyd is expected to miss Sunday's game against Atlanta after having thumb surgery this week. The Jags could also be missing Zay Jones, who is dealing with a knee issue.
- Steelers just signed a player who's been out of the NFL for more than six years. In one of the most interesting signings of the week, the Steelers have added former punter Brad Wing to their practice squad. This is mostly interesting because Wing hasn't played in the NFL since 2017. The 32-year-old has four NFL seasons under his belt, including one that came in Pittsburgh in 2014.
- Cowboys sign former first-round pick. The Cowboys added some depth to their offensive line this week by signing Billy Price to their practice squad. The former first-round pick, who was taken 21st overall by the Bengals in 2018, has started a total of 45 games in his career. The Cowboys are dealing with some serious injury issues on their offensive line with three starters all banged up (Tyler Biadasz, Zack Martin, Tyron Smith).
- XFL and USFL announce intent to merge. We are officially down to one spring football league. There had been reports earlier this month that the XFL and USFL were considering a merger and those reports turned out to be true. The two leagues officially on Thursday. It's not clear what the merge league will be called or when it will kickoff, but those details will likely be announced at some point in the near future.