Welcome to the Week 4 picks, where I'm going to spend a lot of time gushing about Daniel Jones, only to probably pick against him, because that's what we do around these parts.
After watching Jones play against the Bucs on Sunday, I'll be honest guys, I don't think Eli Manning is getting his job back. Not only did Jones lead the Giants to win over Tampa, but he also single-handedly revived the greatest viral sensation in the history of the internet.
Now that I'm watching that video again, I'm somewhat convinced that Daniel Jones might actually be the "Damn Daniel" kid. Someone needs to look into that. Someone also needs to look into what Bruce Arians was thinking at the end of that Giants win over the Bucs, because the man took a delay of game penalty with the thinking that his kicker WAS BETTER from a longer distance.
No kicker in the history of the NFL has ever asked to kick from a longer distance. If a kicker has a choice between a 27-yard field goal and a 34-yard field goal, which is what the Bucs' choices were Sunday, they will pick the 27-yarder every time. It's like asking someone if they want to eat chocolate or Brussels sprouts. No one is ever picking Brussels sprouts in that situation ... well, except for maybe Tom Brady, but he lives on a diet that consists only of avocados and basil lentil tacos, so that's not surprising.
Another thing that's not surprising is that I won't be picking against Brady's team this week, which means, sorry Buffalo, I'm picking against your team this week. To find out who else I'm taking in Week 4, let's get to the picks.
Actually, before we get to the picks, here's a quick reminder that you can check out the weekly picks from every CBSSports.com NFL expert by clicking here, but you were probably already well aware of that since I mention it every week.
One other thing that I mention every week is that you can now hear my dreamy voice on the Pick Six podcast, which is our daily NFL podcast here at CBSSports.com. For the rest of the 2019 season, I'll be joining host Will Brinson three days per week (Monday, Tuesday and Friday). Even though I'm only on three days per week, there's a new episode every single day from Monday thru Friday and you should try to listen as often as possible (You can listen to Tuesday's episode below and make sure to click here to check it out and subscribe). On Tuesday's episode, we ranked the remaining undefeated teams and also spent some time laughing at how bad the Redskins are. I also got made fun of for making the Seahawks over the Saints my "Lock of the Week" in Week 3, and I deserved every second of it.
Alright, if I haven't convinced you to listen to the podcast by now, that's probably because you just want me to get to the picks, so let's get to the Week 4 picks.
NFL Week 4 Picks
Philadelphia (1-2) at Green Bay (3-0)
Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET (Fox, NFL Network, Amazon Prime)
Point spread: Packers, -4.5
This might sound like an exaggeration, but I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say this: No one has had a worse week than the Philadelphia Eagles. In case you missed it, here's a brief recap of what they've had to deal with over the past few days: For one, rookie running back Miles Sanders almost has his head ripped off during the team's loss to Detroit on Sunday.
Now, to the untrained eye, that looks like an obvious face-mask penalty, however, there was no flag thrown on that play, which I guess is fair, because that's more of an attempted decapitation than a face mask, and as everyone knows, there is no penalty for an attempted decapitation in the NFL rule book.
If you thought almost losing your head was bad, I would argue that things have actually been worse for Nelson Agholor, and that's because a Good Samaritan decided to make fun of the Eagles receiver over the weekend. First, this man saved a bunch of babies from a burning building, then he proceeded to make fun of Agholor. Although that sentence sounds 100 percent made up, I assure you, it's not.
This Philadelphia man helped rescue multiple children from a burning building, and even in his moment of glory on TV his frustration as an Eagles fan came out.— Eagles Nation (1-2) (@PHLEaglesNation) September 23, 2019
“My man was just throwing babies out of the window, and we was catching em, unlike Agholor.” 💀 pic.twitter.com/LUiT97IE59
That man is a hero for saving babies and he just used his 15 minutes of fame to complain about Agholor's pass-catching skills. I've never seen a video that epitomizes the people of Philadelphia more than that.
So what else was bad for the Eagles over the past week?
Well, they barely had enough people to suit up for Sunday's game against the Lions. At one point last week, the Eagles had to basically cancel their practice because nearly 25 percent of their roster was injured (They ended up holding a walk-through). When 25 percent of your roster is injured, the last thing you need is to play a Thursday game on just three days rest, but that's exactly what the Eagles are going to have to do this week.
If the NFL would permit it, I'm guessing the Eagles would probably trade all of the cheesesteaks in Philadelphia to not have to play on Thursday this week. Unfortunately for the Eagles though, Roger Goodell hates cheesesteak, so I'm guessing he'd never approve such a trade.
Basically, we have a banged up Eagles team going to Green Bay on short rest to face a Packers team that's 14-0-1 in its past 15 September home games. The Packers offense seems to be on the cusp of breaking out and I'm starting to feel like this is the week where that actually happens.
The pick: Packers 34-23 over Eagles
What picks can you make with confidence in Week 4? And which Super Bowl contender gets absolutely stunned? Visit SportsLine to see which NFL teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from the model that is up over $7,000 on its top-rated picks.
New England (3-0) at Buffalo (3-0)
1 p.m. ET (CBS)
Point spread: Patriots, -7
For the first time since 2011, the Buffalo Bills are 3-0, and I have to say, I'm pretty sure that's a good thing for everyone in this country. I mean, it's definitely a good thing for the folding-table industry, because Bills fans go through folded tables faster than caffeine-addicts go through free coffee.
I'm telling you now, buy stock in the folded-table industry, because that stuff is going to shoot up in value every week that the Bills win a game this season.
You know what other industry is going to thrive now that the Bills are good? The field goal post funnel industry. Sure, you've probably never heard of that industry, but just give it time, because there's no way it's not going to catch on.
If anyone in my family is reading, that's what you guys are getting for Christmas this year. And Mark Cuban, if you're reading, we need to get that thing on "Shark Tank" ASAP. That product will sell millions of units in every NFL city across the country, well, except maybe Tampa Bay, because they're not too thrilled with field goal kickers and field goal posts right now.
As much as I'd love to keep talking about Bills fans, I'm going to stop now, because I don't want to give them the wrong idea about this pick. Here's the problem with the Bills: I'm still not convinced their offense is any good, which could be a huge problem this week because they're about to face a Patriots defense that still has YET TO GIVE UP A TOUCHDOWN THIS YEAR (The Jets scored two touchdowns in Week 3, but one came on a pick-six and one came on a muffed punt recovered in the end zone for a touchdown).
As far as mismatches go, Josh Allen against a Bill Belichick defense is basically the same as me going up against Adele in a karaoke contest where we only sing songs from her first album. I would have no chance and that's kind of how I feel about Allen's chances of producing any points Sunday. I will be shocked if the Bills crack 20 points, which means the only way they're going to win is if they hold the Patriots under 20 points, and I don't see that happening.
The pick: Patriots 27-16 over Bills
Cincinnati (0-3) at Pittsburgh (0-3)
Monday, 8:20 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Point spread: Steelers, -4
If you love watching winless teams play football, then you better clear your schedule for next Monday night, because that's exactly what we'll be getting in this game. Although both the Steelers and Bengals are 0-3, this game actually has some sneaky potential to be good -- and no, ESPN did not pay me to say that, even though it kind of seems like they did as a way to get me to get you to watch the game.
The thing about these teams is that they could both very easily be 2-1 instead of 0-3. In two of their losses, the Bengals led in the fourth quarter, before going full-Bengal and blowing the game. As for the Steelers, two of their three losses this season have come by four or less points.
Of course, the real reason to tune-in to this game is because you might get the chance to see Andy Dalton melt down in prime time. I mean, let's be honest, if the Bengals are good at one thing, it's uniting the internet. Although everyone seems to hate each other online, nothing brings us together like watching the Bengals lose a playoff game or a prime-time game, and since that first one probably won't be happening anytime soon, we'll just have to settle for the second one.
That's a fair question.
The Bengals have lost nine straight road prime-time games and the Steelers have never lost a Monday night home game under Mike Tomlin, so the Steelers seem like the obvious pick, but I hate doing the obvious thing. There's no reason I should be picking Cincinnati, but that's exactly what I'm going to do here. Through three weeks, Dalton has thrown for 978 yards, which is second highest number in the NFL, and I actually think he's going to dice up the Steelers defense. I should also mention that I'm completely afraid to pick Pittsburgh after watching Mason Rudolph play against the 49ers on Sunday.
The pick: Bengals 30-27 over Steelers
Honorary Danny Dimes pick
Washington (0-3) at N.Y. Giants (1-2)
1 p.m. ET (Fox)
Point spread: Giants, -3
I don't know who came up with Daniel Jones' nickname (Danny Dimes), but I plan on using it for the rest of time, so you should probably start getting used to it now.
When I need to be formal, I'll refer to him as Daniel Dimes. When I need to be casual, I'll probably go with Dan Dimes, and when I need to be racy, I'll likely go with Double D, although, I don't know why I'd ever need to be racy making football picks, but you never know.
Anyway, I was as shocked as anyone on Sunday after Danny D led the Giants on an 18-point comeback to beat the Buccaneers. With Mr. Dimes running the show, the Giants offense looked nearly unstoppable in the second half. However, I'm not quite ready to get on a bandwagon being driven by a rookie quarterback. First of all, rookies are notoriously bad drivers. Also, I have two big problems with the Giants right now: They have one of the worst defenses in the NFL and they're not going to have Saquon Barkley for the next few weeks.
Basically, Daniel Jones is going to have to single-handedly carry the Giants to victory every week, which is a lot to ask of a rookie. After a sky-high debut, I think Jones and the Giants will come crashing down to earth this week.
The pick: Redskins 34-27 over Giants
Lock of the Week
Kansas City (3-0) at Detroit (2-0-1)
1 p.m. ET (Fox)
Point spread: Chiefs, -6.5
We're only four weeks into the season, and somehow, the "Lock of the Week" has turned into the least reliable part of my picks column. It's starting to feel like the real "Lock of the Week" is to bet against my "Lock of the Week."
To turn things around, I've decided to what pretty much everyone else is going to do this week: Pick the Chiefs to win.
With the Chiefs playing Baltimore in Week 3, I was a little worried that playing against the Lions in Week 4 might turn into a trap game for Kansas City, but somehow, the Lions are now 2-0-1, which actually makes me feel better about this pick because there's no way the Chiefs are going to overlook an unbeaten team.
My problem with picking Detroit is that I don't think Lions coach Matt Patricia has any idea how to stop an Andy Reid offense. Reid has been the coach in Kansas City since 2013 and during his time with the Chiefs, he's gone up against a Patricia defense three times (Patricia was the Patriots defensive coordinator until 2017). In those three games, the Chiefs averaged 34.3 points and that was with ALEX SMITH as their starting quarterback. With Patrick Mahomes running the show, the Chiefs might hit that number in the first quarter.
The pick: Chiefs 41-24 over Lions
Lock of the week record: 2-1 straight-up, 1-2 against the spread
NFL Week 4 picks: All the rest
Titans 23-20 over Falcons
Colts 31-20 over Raiders
Rams 23-16 over Buccaneers
Chargers 27-13 over Dolphins
Redskins 34-27 over Giants
Ravens 30-24 over Browns
Texans 24-23 over Panthers
Vikings 20-16 over Bears
Seahawks 24-17 over Cardinals
Broncos 19-16 over Jaguars
Cowboys 27-23 over Saints
BYE WEEKS: Jets, 49ers
Best pick: Last week, I going to give up on throwing flags and let the players try and decapitate each other? Of course I did, and that's because Tony Corrente was officiating the game. I follow plenty of Eagles fans on Twitter and their least favorite official is definitely Corrente.the Eagles by three and then the Lions went out and beat the Eagles by three. Now, did I know that the refs were just
Eagles fans haven't taught me a lot in life, but if they have taught me one thing it's to always pick the other team when Corrente is officiating an Eagles game. I also picked the Lions because Carson Wentz is known to regularly have near death experiences behind his offensive line.
Yikes. I'm not sure how he's going to survive the year with blocking like that.
Worst pick: My worst pick of Week 3 was taking the Seahawks over the Saints, but I'm not sure I should even count that as a loss, because I would have never picked the Seahawks if I had known that Pete Carroll was going to be coaching with a head injury. Before the game started, Carroll got hit so hard in the face with a football that he had to get multiple stitches on his nose.
Now, I'm not a doctor, but that man should have been in concussion protocol. I don't even know if he had a concussion, but based on the way he coached against the Saints, I'm going to assume he did, because that's the only way to explain how horrible his team looked.
I think the main lesson I learned here is that if a coach ever gets hit in the face with a football before a game, then I should probably change my pick.
Straight up in Week 3: 11-5
SU overall: 34-13-1
Against the spread in Week 3: 10-6
ATS overall: 27-20-1