The NFL picks for Week 4 are like any other week. There are several games that seem easy to predict, but other NFL predictions appear much more difficult. A few games are more hyped-up than most, like the Redskins-Eagles, Ravens-Steelers, Patriots-Dolphins, and Bears-Giants. But some of those matchups have clear favorites anyway — although predictability hasn’t been a big part of the year so far. Therefore, the NFL picks this week stand to be difficult to make, perhaps even in unexpected places.
There are 14 games on Sunday and Monday, since this is the first bye week of the year. In half of those matchups, Yahoo users favor a team by more than 90 percent. Some of those lopsided results are obvious for clashes like the Lions-Packers, 49ers-Falcons, Panthers-Saints, Bills-Jets, Texans-Raiders, Cardinals-Chargers and Colts-Jaguars.
Making the Week 4 picks for those games looks simple, as the Falcons, Jets and Colts carry obvious momentum, and teams like the 49ers, Panthers and Bills are crumbling fast. Yet the Saints and Texans need to prove they can bounce back, as do the Chargers and Packers.
Preseason favorites have had a hard time thus far, while teams like the Chiefs and Bears have come out of nowhere. Someone else who has come out of nowhere is Michael Vick, as he leads the Eagles in the most-hyped game on Sunday. But according to most predictions, Donovan McNabb’s return to Philadelphia will be a losing one.
The Redskins are flailing after two straight losses, while the Eagles have been high flying with Vick. However, most thought the struggling Cowboys would sink against the hot Texans on the road last week, and they blew them out instead. The Redskins might not blow the Eagles out, yet with McNabb coming back home, no one knows what to expect — so this might be a match to stay away from.
Yet perhaps the hardest of the picks for Week 4 is the Ravens vs Steelers. Although Pittsburgh is 3-0, they are facing their greatest rival in a clash expected to be more low-scoring than usual. The Steelers scored 38 points on Tampa Bay with Charlie Batch, but the Ravens are not the Bucs.
The primetime matchups stand to be just as difficult. The 3-0 Bears are visiting the troubled Giants, yet Chicago hasn’t inspired large amounts of confidence yet. Then, on Monday night, the Patriots visit the Dolphins in a big AFC East showdown between 2-1 teams.
Conventional wisdom for this week’s picks is to take squads like the Eagles, Packers, Saints, Colts, Falcons, Patriots, Jets and Texans. Yet conventionality has not yet shown up, or has at least been less busy than usual, in the 2010 season.
Yahoo Sports- “Expert Picks”
ESPN- “NFL Expert Picks: Week 4”