It was another 8-8 week for our Round 3 NFL betting tips, taking us to 23-25 on the NFL season so far. There was some tough losses in there, as well as some bad calls. It’s an interesting slate of games ahead in Week 4 of the NFL season, so let’s get straight into it. Here's our Week 4 preview and NFL betting tips.
Paul Brown Stadium, Friday 10:20am AEST
We start Week 4 with two historically bad teams, but off to very different starts in 2021. The Jaguars came into the season with new hope, thanks to a new coaching staff, and most importantly a new quarterback in the form of generational prospect Trevor Lawrence. Things are not going so well. A 0-3 start, and 5:7 touchdown to intercept ratio for Lawrence are both symptoms of of an organisation that it still not working in unison. The defence is still bad, the running game is not great, Lawrence will take time to get used to deciphering NFL defences, and there are major doubts over the abilities of head coach Urban Meyer. Having said all that, the team did get off to a fast start against the Cardinals last week, and they are not completely without hope.
The Bengals on the other hand are off to a much more promising start in 2021. They have their own #1 pick quarterback in Joe Burrow, and despite his catastrophic knee injury in 2020, he’s off to a decent start this season. A big part of that is an instant reconnection with former college teammate (and stud prospect) Ja’Marr Chase, who has scored 4 touchdowns in his first 3 games. It’s translated to a 2-1 start to the season, which could have been one better if not for a tight 3 point loss to the struggling Bears. Having conceded only 54 points so far, I like the teams chance of limiting the Jaguars scoring, and they should have no trouble moving the ball against a team that has conceded 91 points in the first 3 weeks.
Gillett Stadium, Monday 11:20am AEST
This game is going to be hyped relentlessly for one simple reason, Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski against their former team, the team for which they might be the best two players ever. Of course the Buccaneers are the reigning Super Bowl Champions, but they took a big hit last week when suffering a 10 point loss to the high-flying Rams. The key takeaway from that game, and all the Bucs games so far, was that the team is struggling to defend the pass. They are extremely stout against the run, but injuries and personnel issues are allowing teams to throw the ball at will. Still, the Bucs themselves are continuing to move the ball through the air with incredible efficiency, with Brady seemingly reaching new heights and throwing more deep balls than we have seen for a number of years. They won’t see many defences as difficult as the Rams.
The Patriots on the other hand are operating under rookie quarterback Mac Jones, who had his first truly bad performance last week when throwing three interceptions in a big loss to the Saints. A part of the teams issue is that the receiving weapons are limited, which will make it difficult to take advantage of the oppositions weakness. The defensive scheme is still very stout, but if anyone is going to know how to pick it apart it is Brady. Despite being on the road, I’m comfortable siding with the reigning champs who have a point to prove after last weeks big loss.
SoFi Stadium, Tuesday 11:15am AEST
The week finishes with an AFC West divisional matchup at the electric SoFi Stadium. The visiting Raiders are off to a great start, sitting at 3-0 after a thrilling overtime win over the Dolphins last week. Two of their wins so far can be described that way, which means they could easily be sitting at 1-2. I am far from convinced that the Raiders are any better than they have been in recent seasons, with middling play on both sides of the ball and questionable coaching.
The Chargers are at 2-1 after an enormous victory over the Chiefs last weekend, and unlike the Raiders I am very convinced that the team is the real deal. Their only defeat was a 3 point grinding loss against the Cowboys. Justin Herbert is looking just as amazing as his rookie season, and the new offensive scheme under coordinator Joe Lombardi has proved effective in spreading the ball around and particularly in turning Mike Williams into a hugely effective receiver rather than an inconsistent deep threat. Meanwhile new head coach Brandon Staley is renowned for his defensive genius, and judging by the concession of just 60 points against some very potent opposition so far, I’d say his influence is rubbing off. All of this points to a comfortable victory at home for the much improved Chargers against a middling Raiders team.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Cincinnati Bengals - See Above
Washington Football Team at Atlanta Falcons - Falcons +1.5 ($1.90 at TAB)
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears - Bears -3 ($2.00 at Sportsbet)
Tennessee Titans at New York Jets - Jets +7.5 ($1.95 at Sportsbet)
Cleveland Browns at Minnesota Vikings - Browns -2.5 ($1.97 at Sportsbet)
Indianapolis Colts at Miami Dolphins - Colts +2.5 ($1.86 at Sportsbet)
Carolina Panthers at Dallas Cowboys - Cowboys -4.5 ($1.85 at Sportsbet)
New York Giants at New Orleans Saints - Giants +7.5 ($1.97 at Sportsbet)
Kansas City Chiefs at Philadelphia Eagles - Chiefs -7.5 ($1.96 at Sportsbet)
Houston Texans at Buffalo Bills - Bills -16.5 ($1.95 at Sportsbet)
Arizona Cardinals at Los Angeles Rams - Cardinals +4.5 ($1.90 at TAB)
Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers - Seahawks +3 ($1.86 at Sportsbet)
Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos - Ravens +1 (1.86 at Sportsbet)
Pittsburgh Steelers at Green Bay Packers - Packers -7 ($1.97 at Sportsbet)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New England Patriots - See Above
Las Vegas Raiders at Los Angeles Chargers - See Above
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