Welcome to the Monday edition of the Pick Six newsletter!
After 14 straight hours of watching football yesterday, I thought for sure that I'd be burnt out on football, but I am not. On the other hand, I can totally understand if Bears fans are burnt out on football right now after what happened yesterday. It's not easy to blow a 21-point lead in the second half, but the Bears managed to do it against Denver, going from a 28-7 lead in the third quarter to a 31-28 loss.
The problem with being a Bears fan (besides the fact that you're a Bears fan) is that I'm not even sure I'd be upset about this loss. At 0-4, the Bears now hold the TOP TWO PICKS in the 2024 draft because they also have Carolina's first-round pick and the Panthers are 0-4. I will be actively rooting for the Bears to get both picks just so I can see how their front office manages to mess that up.
All right, that's enough Bears talk. We have plenty of other games to recap today and we're going to do that now with some grades, some winners and losers and a preview of tonight's game.
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: Biggest questions from Week 4
If I sound tired right now, it's because I stayed up until 3 a.m. last night recording a podcast with Will Brinson and Ryan Wilson.
The three of us touched on our 10 biggest takeaways from Week 4 and here are a few of the questions that we tried to answer:
- Who's the best team in the AFC East? Last week, everyone thought it was the Dolphins after they put up 70, but now, the Bills made their case by absolutely destroying Miami 48-20 on Sunday. The Bills have looked dominant: They've won three straight games with all three wins coming by at least 28 points. The three of us actually agreed that we'd take the Bills if we had to pick a division winner right now.
- Are the Bengals broken? The Bengals got embarrassed in a 27-3 loss to the Titans, and a big reason for that is because the offense looks broken. Joe Burrow isn't a 100%, which is a big reason why the offense has been struggling. At this point, sending Burrow to the bench to heal probably isn't realistic if you want to have any shot at making the playoffs this year. The Bengals are going to have to hope they can win their next two games (at Arizona, vs. Seattle) and if that happens, Burrow will finally get some time to heal during Cincinnati's Week 7 bye.
- Do the Falcons need to bench Desmond Ridder? For the second straight week, the Falcons scored fewer than 10 points and for the second straight week Ridder struggled. The Falcons have a lot of offensive weapons, but they're not getting a lot of use because Ridder is having trouble throwing the ball. If Ridder struggles in Week 5 against the Texans, the three of us agreed that Arthur Smith should think about benching him in favor of Taylor Heinicke.
To check out the rest of our takeaways from Week 4, be sure to click here so you can listen to the entire episode of the podcast. You can also watch the episode on YouTube here.
2. Week 4 grades: Titans get an 'A+' for destroying Bengals
Every week I team up with six of my colleagues here at CBSSports.com to hand out grades, and this week, the Titans got an 'A+' for destroying the Bengals.
Here's a look at the grades from two notable games that were played Sunday:
Broncos 31-28 over Bears (Click here for full game stats)
- Broncos takeaway: For the better part of three quarters, the Broncos were getting run off the field by the worst team in football, but then, Denver saved its season with a miraculous comeback from a 28-7 deficit. Russell Wilson helped spur the comeback with an impressive second half that included 135 passing yards and two touchdowns. The defense also did a much better job of slowing down Justin Fields, who struggled in the second half with two turnovers, including a fumble that Jonathon Cooper returned for a TD to tie the game at 28. This wasn't a pretty win by any means and Sean Payton would have likely had to fire his entire defensive coaching staff if Denver had lost, but the Broncos should feel somewhat good about themselves after picking up their first win of the season. Grade: B+
- Bears takeaway: For one half, Justin Fields looked like the QB of the future in Chicago: He started the game completing 16 straight passes during a first half where he threw for 231 yards and three touchdowns. With a 28-7 lead in the third quarter, the Bears seemed to have this one wrapped up, but then the Bears went back to being the Bears. On their final four possessions of the game, they punted twice and they turned the ball over twice, including a fumble by Fields that Denver returned for a game-tying TD. It was a total meltdown by a team that seems to find a new way to lose every week. Grade: B-
Titans 27-3 over Bengals (Click here for full game stats, analysis)
- Bengals takeaway: With Joe Burrow hobbled, the Bengals offense just isn't as dangerous as it used to be. Of course, even if he was completely healthy, that might not have mattered, because the offensive line couldn't stop Tennessee's pass-rush. Things were almost as bad defensively with the Bengals getting diced up by Ryan Tannehill while simultaneously getting steamrolled by Derrick Henry. The Bengals have now turned into road kill this year. They've played two road games and they've now been outscored 51-6 while going 0-2 in those games. Grade: F
- Titans takeaway: Mike Vrabel will probably be keeping the film from this game for a while because his team played a nearly perfect game. The Titans coach loves to beat you with defense, he loves to beat you with Derrick Henry and if Ryan Tannehill is playing well on top of that, then Tennessee is almost impossible to beat. The Titans got all three of those things. Their defense suffocated Joe Burrow. Derrick Henry rushed for 122 yards and a TD while also THROWING a TD pass and Tannehill had arguably his best game of the season. When the Titans are playing like this, they can beat anyone in the NFL. Grade: A+
As for the other 20 grades we handed out on Sunday,.
3. 14 crazy facts from Week 4: Belichick suffers biggest loss in coaching career
Every Sunday night, I get an email from our research department here at CBS Sports, and every Sunday, that email always includes some amazingly wild facts about the games that were just played.
With that in mind, here are 14 crazy facts about Week 4 with a major focus on the Dolphins:
- Bad news bears. The Bears blew a 28-7 lead in their loss to the Broncos, which ties the record for the largest blown lead in franchise history. The Bears are also the first team in NFL history to surrender at least 25 points in 14 straight games.
- Bad news Belichick. The Patriots' 35-point loss to the Cowboys is the largest loss of Bill Belichick's coaching career, which is pretty wild when you consider that he's been an NFL head coach for 28 seasons.
- Mack Daddy. With six sacks against the Raiders, Khalil Mack is now tied for the second-highest total for a single game in NFL history. Mack is the fifth player to tally at least six sacks. The NFL record belongs to Derrick Thomas, who once totaled seven sacks in a single game.
- Just Joshing around. With 320 passing yards and five total touchdowns (four passing, one rushing) to go along with a perfect passer rating, Josh Allen became just the second QB in NFL history to hit 300 yards with four passing touchdowns, a rushing TD and a perfect passer rating, joining Aaron Rodgers, who did it in 2019.
- Scoring hangover. Maybe scoring 70 isn't all its cracked up to be. Following Miami's loss to the Bills, teams that score 60 points or more in a game are now 1-6 all time in their next game (when that next game is in the same season).
- Rookie setting records. With nine receptions for 163 yards against the Colts, Puka Nacua now has 39 on the season, which is now the most in NFL history for a player in his first four games. Nacua broke a record that was held by Anquan Boldin, who had 30. Nacua was the hero on Sunday: The receiver caught the game-winning TD pass in overtime to give the Rams a 29-23 win over the Colts.
- Proud of Stroud. The Texans rookie currently looks like the best QB from the class of 2023. With 306 yards against the Steelers, C.J. Stroud has now thrown for 1,212 yards on the season, which is the second most in NFL history through four games, trailing only Cam Newton (1,386).
- Hurts so good. With Philadelphia's overtime win, Jalen Hurts is now 21-1 in his last 22 starts, making him just the seventh QB since 1950 to go 21-1 over any 22-game span.
- Bengals are bungling. Through four games, Joe Burrow is averaging just 4.8 yards per pass attempt, which is the lowest number by any quarterback through four games over the past 73 years.
- Purdy awesome. Brock Purdy completed 95.2% of his passes against the Cardinals, which set the franchise record for highest completion percentage in a game. Considering Joe Montana and Steve Young both played for the Niners, that's a pretty impressive record. Purdy's percentage is also the fourth highest in NFL history.
- Mac attack is back in the end zone. Christian McCaffrey scored four touchdowns against the Cardinals and has now scored at least one TD in 13 straight games, which is the longest streak in 49ers history. It's also the fourth-longest streak in NFL history trailing only O.J. Simpson (15), John Riggins (15) and Emmitt Smith (14).
- Mahomes magic. The Chief QB threw his 200th career TD on Sunday night and he hit that number in just 84 games, which is an NFL record. The previous mark was held by Dan Marino, who did it in 89.
- Andy Reid hits 250. The Chiefs' 23-20 win over the Jets on Sunday marked the 250th regular-season victory of Reid's career, which is the fourth most in NFL history. Only Don Shula (328), George Halas (318) and Bill Belichick (299) have more.
- The Zach attack is back. During the Jets' loss to Kansas City, Wilson did something no QB had ever done before: He outplayed Patrick Mahomes in every way possible. Wilson finished with more completions, more passing yards, more TD passes and fewer interceptions than Mahomes, marking the first time in a Mahomes start -- college or pro -- that an opposing QB has pulled that off (via OptaSTATS).
If you see any other fun facts, feel free to tweet them at me.
4. NFL Week 4 winners and losers: Josh Allen outduels Tua Tagovailoa
You can't have a week of NFL action without having winners and losers, so we have some winners and losers.
We put Cody Benjamin in charge of deciding who won and who lost in Week 4, and here's what he came up with:
- Josh Allen. "The Bills quarterback had a rough start to 2023, but he all but single-handedly halted the Tua Tagovailoa hype train by outdueling the Dolphins' MVP frontrunner in a 48-20 home win."
- A.J. Brown. "In the two games since his sideline 'spat' with close friend Jalen Hurts, the Eagles star has racked up 18 catches for 306 yards and two scores."
- Lamar Jackson. "On a day he was without Odell Beckham Jr. and Rashod Bateman, plus got little efficiency from his running mates in the backfield, the Ravens QB had no trouble shouldering the load for Baltimore against the Browns, scoring four times and completing all but four of his passes to bury the Deshaun Watson-less rivals."
- The Bears. "Up three scores on the winless Broncos, Chicago proceeded to cough up 24 unanswered points, with Justin Fields spoiling his own four-touchdown breakout with two fourth-quarter turnovers and the coaches deciding against a late go-ahead field-goal try."
- The Steelers. "Remember when everyone was picking Pittsburgh to surprise out of the AFC North in the preseason? Fun times. QB Kenny Pickett left Sunday's blowout loss to the Texans (!) due to injury, but even before that, the entire operation remained dysfunctional."
- Desmond Ridder. "Ridder is headed in the opposite direction of Mayfield, throwing back-to-back picks in a preseason-like loss to the Jaguars in London. Eight starts in, he's yet to truly elevate the offense, and his teammates are growing frustrated."
If you want to see Cody's full list of winners and losers,.
5. Monday preview: Prepping you for Seahawks at Giants
For the third time in four weeks, the NFL is putting the Giants in prime time again, which might not be great news for the Giants since Daniel Jones never seems to win in prime time. The Giants QB has a career record of 1-12 in prime time, which is the worst record in NFL history for any QB who's started at least 10 prime-time games. So far this season, the Giants have been outscored 70-12 in two prime-time games, but they'll be looking to change that tonight against the Seahawks in a game where Seattle is favored by two.
My good buddy Jared Dubin put together our deep-dive preview for this game here at CBSSports.com, and here's how he sees the game playing out:
- Why the Seahawks can win: The Giants have a young secondary that includes two rookie cornerbacks (Deonte Banks and Tre Hawkins), so it won't be surprising at all if the Seahawks look to take advantage of that. With a trio of receivers that includes DK Metcalf, Tyler Lockett and Jaxon Smith-Njigba, the Seahawks offense could end up putting up some big numbers. Not to mention, Geno Smith has looked sharp over the past two weeks after struggling in Week 1. If the Seahawks turn this into a shootout, it's hard to see the Giants keeping up.
- Why the Giants can win: This one is all going to come down to Daniel Jones, especially in prime-time games. In the Giants' previous two prime-time games this season -- a 40-0 loss to the Cowboys in Week 1 and a 30-12 loss to the 49ers in Week 3 -- Jones threw zero touchdowns and four interceptions while averaging just 120.5 passing yards per game. Those are abysmal numbers. If that Jones shows up tonight, the Giants have no chance. The Giants need the 2022 version of Jones to show up, and that's at least possible since the Seahawks defense isn't as good as the defenses that Jones faced earlier this year with Dallas and San Francisco.
You can get.
If you're thinking about betting on the game, Jordan Dajani has put together a full gambling preview.
- ONE PROP JORDAN LIKES: Jaxon Smith-Njigba OVER 28.5 receiving yards (-119). "I'm hoping this is the 'JSN breakout game.' The rookie wideout caught just one of three targets for 10 yards last week, but caught five of six targets for 34 yards vs. the Lions a couple weeks ago. In all three games, Smith-Njigba has caught at least one pass that's gone 10 yards, so it's not like we need a ton of targets to cover this number."
- ONE PROP I LIKE: Jason Myers OVER 6.5 points (-125). I don't want to say we're in the midst of the greatest streak since Joe DiMaggio, but we're inching closer to that range. Heading into the final game of Week 4, my kicker props are 8-0 on the season and we're looking push it to NINE straight. If I go missing, it's because the sportsbooks have decided to lock me in a basement so I can't hand out anymore kicker props. Tonight, we're putting the streak on Jason Myers going over 6.5. Here are the two things I love about Myers: First, he's gone over this number in FIVE straight games dating back to last season (He scored 17 POINTS last week). Also, Pete Carroll loves kicking field goals. Myers has the fifth-most field-goal attempts this year even though he hasn't even played his fourth game like everyone else.
You can check out Jordan's full gambling preview. Finally, if you're wondering who we're picking, here's who we have tonight:
Jared's pick: Seahawks 24-20 over Giants
Jordan's pick: Seahawks 27-20 over Giants
My pick: Seahawks 31-24 over Giants
Over on our CBSSports.com picks page, five of our experts are riding the Seahawks while three of them are taking the Giants.
6. Extra points: Kenny Pickett likely to miss some time
It was a busy weekend 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.
- Mitchell Trubisky could soon be starting for the Steelers. Kenny Pickett had to according to NFL.com. If Pickett's out, that means Trubisky will be the Steelers' starter. on Sunday after injuring his knee. Although the injury isn't expected to end his season, he is expected to miss some time,
- Bills starter likely out for season. Tre'Davious White went down with an injury during the third quarter of Buffalo's win over Miami and the team
- Injury roundup. There were a lot of injuries in Week 4 with Davante Adams (shoulder), Mike Evans (hamstring) and Tee Higgins (rib) all dealing with injuries. If you want the latest on every player who was injured in Week 4, be .
- Chase Claypool likely done in Chicago. The Bears receiver didn't play on Sunday after being sent home, and now, it looks like he won't be at the team facility at all this week on the orders of coach Matt Eberflus, which means there's a good chance he'll be traded or cut in the near future. You can read the
- NFL makes major changes to gambling policy. Under the revised policy, any player caught betting on his OWN team will be suspended for a minimum of TWO years, which is up from one year under the old policy. That's the biggest change of the new policy. For all the other changes, be .
- Jameson Williams eligible to play for Lions. One other change under the revised gambling policy is that players will only be suspended for two games if they're caught betting on non-NFL sporting events at work. Williams and Titans lineman Nicholas Petit-Frere were both suspended six games for breaking that policy, but now, they're both eligible to return for Week 5, which means Williams will be eligible to play on Sunday against the Panthers.
- Raiders release Chandler Jones. The Raiders have finally given up on Jones. The 33-year-old, who was arrested on Thursday night in Las Vegas, was officially released on Saturday. Jones didn't play in a single game for the Raiders this year and had been on the NFI list. You
- Nick Chubb has MCL surgery, will now need ACL surgery. The Browns' star running back is going to need two surgeries to fix his knee. The first surgery happened on Friday. The second surgery will happen in the next few months and he's having it done to repair some damage to his ACL, according to ESPN. There was some hope that Chubb wouldn't need the ACL repaired at all, but as it turns out, it now has to be fixed.