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NFL Week 4 Picks And Predictions

SB Nation Dallas' staff predicts Week 4 of the NFL, a week featuring many mismatches but also some intriguing games such as the Ravens/Steelers, Redskins/Eagles, Giants/Bears and Patriots/Dolphins.

HOUSTON - SEPTEMBER 02:  Houston Texans Cheerleaders perform during a football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on September 2 2010 in Houston Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON - SEPTEMBER 02: Houston Texans Cheerleaders perform during a football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Houston Texans at Reliant Stadium on September 2 2010 in Houston Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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We've reached Week 4 in the NFL season already. After this week, most teams will already have a quarter of their schedule played. That's bad news for teams like San Francisco who had high hopes and are still searching for their first win. It's also the first week of the 2010 season where some teams have Bye weeks - the Cowboys being one of them.

Week 4 features a few mismatches - see: New Orleans hosting the hapless Panthers - but also has a few games that Cowboys fans should be interested in despite the Bye week. Of course, we'll never hear the end of McNabb's return to Philadelphia. The Ravens/Steelers match up could turn into quite a game as the Steelers look to go 4-0 without Roethlisberger. Sunday Night Football will feature Eli Manning and the Giants trying to avoid going 1-3 at the hands of the Bears. And of course, Monday Night Football will feature the 2-1 Dolphins against the 2-1 Patriots as well.

Last week, Maurice London led the way in correct picks going 12-4. Here are the picks here from the staff for Week 4.

San Francisco (0-3) at Atlanta (2-1) - The 49ers have to be the most disappointing team in the NFL this year. Pegged as the big fish in the small pond that is the NFC West, the 49ers have done nothing but lose. We'll see if the change at offensive coordinator will make a difference. Meanwhile, the Falcons have bounced back nicely after a Week 1 loss in Pittsburgh - including an overtime win last week in New Orleans.

  • Maurice London: Falcons - Just remember that Mike Greenberg picked the Niners to go to the Super Bowl and have a good laugh.
  • Robbie Griffin: Falcons - I'm interested to see just how much Matt Ryan can destroy that defense.
  • Christopher Fittz: Falcons - I want to see Mike Singletary's head explode live on the air.
  • Liam Ponting: Falcons
  • Jonathan Wall: Falcons
  • Brandon Worley: Falcons
  • Charley Code: Falcons - Although, I love you, Singletary.
  • JP Starkey: Falcons - Maybe in SF I'd pick the Niners. At least San Francisco fans can look forward to Tim Lincecum in the playoffs.
  • Brett Perryman: Falcons - SF's new OC doesn't fix their multitude of problems.
New York (2-1) at Buffalo (0-3) - The Jets are coming off two big divisional wins against the Patriots and Dolphins. I'm sure Rex Ryan hit the victory buffet hard and fast after both. The Bills, although hapless, seem to have made the right call at quarterback with Ryan Fitzpatrick. At least they didn't look like corpses last week in Foxboro.
  • London: Jets - Thomas Chandler Gailey is my mortal enemy. I hope he goes winless this year.
  • Griffin: Jets - Like the Patriots last week, I'll bet this game is closer than expected but the favorite still wins.
  • Fittz: Jets - While I'd also enjoy seeing Rex Ryan's head explode live on the air, it ain't happening against the Bills.
  • Ponting: Jets
  • Wall: Jets
  • Worley: Jets
  • Code: Jets - Fat head coach
  • Starkey: Jets - Fun fact: I was boo'ed by the Jets cheerleaders at the NFL Draft two years ago just for wearing my Brady jersey.
  • Perryman: Jets - I hate that I can't use 'Sanchize!' in derisive fashion right now.
Cincinnati (2-1) at Cleveland (0-3) - The Bengals have clawed their way to a 2-1 record despite getting extremely sub-par play out of Carson Palmer. The Browns have had three pretty close games - losing by a combined 12 points in those games.
  • London: Bengals - Carson Palmer looks like a shell of his former self. Sad.
  • Griffin: Bengals - I'm really tempted to take the Browns. Cincy is just starting to look very bad and Cleveland has lost some close ones.
  • Fittz: Bengals - This game is the football equivelence of a Royals v. Tigers mid afternoon game only it is 1/16th of an entire season.
  • Ponting: Bengals
  • Wall: Bengals
  • Worley: Bengals
  • Code: Bengals - Cinci.
  • Starkey: Browns - The Browns will be all jazzed up for this game and the Bengals have looked awful despite their 2-1 record. I refuse to believe in the Bengals. I might pick against them every week.
  • Perryman: Bengals - Browns have lost three by a combined 12 points, but that passing game is brutal.
Detroit (0-3) at Green Bay (2-1) - There's nothing shocking about either of these records. The Lions had played two really close games until losing by a pair of scores last week. Green Bay had chances to beat the Bears despite being penalized more than the Cowboys offensive line could dream of.
  • London: PackersJim Schwartz might be the best coach in the NFC North. That said, he won't like Aaron Rodgers when he's angry.
  • Griffin: Packers - I think this is the second most one-sided game this week, but when you like getting penalized as much as the Packers I suppose there's always more of a shot for the underdog than there should be.
  • Fittz: Packers - I think there's a possible upset here but I'm not brave enough to pick it.
  • Ponting: Packers
  • Wall: Packers
  • Worley: Packers
  • Code: Packers - Mr. Rogers.
  • Starkey: Packers - Probably a good week to have Rodgers and Jennings on your fantasy team.
  • Perryman: Packers - The Lions still don't stop people, and they won't stop the Pack.
Denver (1-2) at Tennessee (2-1) - Denver actually had chances to beat the Colts last week but simply couldn't execute, specifically in the redzone. Not having Moreno in the backfield seemed to really hurt them. The Titans went into the New Meadowlands and gave the nation a glimpse of Manning-face again.
  • London: Titans - Will Chris Johnson get 40 carries this week?
  • Griffin: Titans - Yawn. Nothing about this game interests me.
  • Fittz: Titans - This is like the battle of the last two teams that won't make the playoffs.
  • Ponting: Titans
  • Wall: Titans
  • Worley: Titans
  • Code: Titans - Johnson = xfactor. He has a wallet that says bad mthrfckr on it.
  • Starkey: Titans - I'm tempted to take the Broncos. If they were at home, I would.
  • Perryman: Titans - Broncos can only throw; Titans can only run. Run game wins out at home.
Seattle (2-1) at St. Louis (1-2) - The Seahawks stunned the Chargers last week in Seattle, giving Pete Carroll a nifty 2-1 record. That almost clinches the NFC West, right? Sam Bradford picked up his first career win last week but could be without Steven Jackson this weekend.
  • London: RamsThis has to be the worst division in the history of the NFL.
  • Griffin: Rams - This is a road dog and a west coast team playing an early game. There is no way I'm not taking the Rams. If Seattle wins this game, I'm probably going to start considering them the favorites in the division.
  • Fittz: Seahawks - I hope the winner of the NFC West is 6-10.
  • Ponting: Seahawks
  • Wall: Seahawks
  • Worley: Rams
  • Code: Rams - Pujols is by far the best player in this town.
  • Starkey: Seahawks - Steven Jackson's health has me taking Seattle.
  • Perryman: Seahawks - Steven Jackson's health is big. Seattle has 3 returns for TDs in their two wins.
Carolina (0-3) at New Orleans (2-1) - Same old for Carolina despite the change at quarterback from Moore to Clausen last week: the offense was anemic. The Saints lost in overtime thanks to Garrett Hartley shanking a game winning field goal. 
  • London: Saints - How much better would Steve Smith be if he actually played with a decent QB in his career?
  • Griffin: Saints - I'll bet on this being the blowout of the week.
  • Fittz: Saints - I will be embarrassed for the Saints if they lose this game.
  • Ponting: Saints
  • Wall: Saints
  • Worley: Saints
  • Code: Saints - Duh.
  • Starkey: Saints - I've got no interest in watching this slaughter. I hope I'm not playing against Brees in fantasy.
  • Perryman: Saints - It's going to be a long day for the pitiful Panthers and their rookie QB.
Baltimore (2-1) at Pittsburgh (3-0) - Anquan Boldin had a career game last week, racking up 142 yards and 3 TD catches, which is much more than the Ravens could have expected when they dealt for him. That was against a pretty lame Browns team though. Pittsburgh has looked excellent in their first three games without Roethlisberger and look to stay perfect without their starting quarterback.
  • London: Ravens - Not sold on the Steelers yet. Rice has a big game for the Ravens.
  • Griffin: Steelers - Fine, I'll believe in the Dennis Dixon Steelers at the last second. I would still take the Ravens at home, but I never thought I'd be taking the Steelers in this game wherever it was played.
  • Fittz: Steelers - I've been riding the Roethlisberger-less Steelers all season and I don't intend to stop until they lose which they won't do at home. The Steelers are diabolical.
  • Ponting: Ravens
  • Wall: Steelers
  • Worley: Ravens
  • Code: Steelers - I don't know man. I hate the Steelers.
  • Starkey: Steelers - I hate the Steelers but Hines Ward is tough. I'm not buying the Ravens offense.
  • Perryman: Steelers - Ravens have actually been run on so far, and they're going to get a lot of Mendenhall.
Houston (2-1) at Oakland (1-2) - Who would have thought that the Texans would be Dallas' first victim this year? Anyway, after two pretty big wins the Texans came out flat last week. They'll get to face off against a Raiders team that should have beat Arizona last week if not for Sea Bass Janikowski shanking not one, not two, but three field goals. Ouch.
  • London: Texans - It would be so like the Texans to lose this game.
  • Griffin: Texans - Nothing to see here.
  • Fittz: Texans - This game will be terrible. Let's take a moment to talk instead about the fact that the Cowboys have a Week Four bye. What's that about? They've played THREE GAMES. They don't need a rest.
  • Ponting: Texans
  • Wall: Texans
  • Worley: Texans
  • Code: Texans - H-town baby. We gets down baby.
  • Starkey: Raiders - The autumn wind is a pirate. That, and I refuse to believe the Texans are good.
  • Perryman: Texans - After Manning, McNabb and Romo, Gradkowski is a welcome sight for Houston D.
Indianapolis (2-1) at Jacksonville (1-2) - Not too surprisingly, the Colts have rebounded from their loss against the Texans to open the season with wins against the Giants and Broncos. They'll get to visit the tame Jaguars this weekend. Who would have guessed that Jones-Drew would have only 217 yards after three weeks? Fantasy owners have to be pissed.
  • London: Colts - If Jack Del Rio didn't wear a suit on the sideline that one year would he still have a job? Probably not. Suiting up saves jobs. Always suit up.
  • Griffin: Colts - I'm really tempted to take Jacksonville to beat the spread. A team that's game planned Manning well in the past at home with seven points is enticing. I'm definitely taking the Colts to win, though.
  • Fittz: Colts - I think the Jaguars are already looking hungrierly at the Jake Lockers and Ryan Malletts of the world.
  • Ponting: Colts
  • Wall: Colts
  • Worley: Colts
  • Code: Colts - Peyton.
  • Starkey: Colts - The one time I picked the Colts to win this year, they lost. Here's hoping that trend continues.
  • Perryman: Colts - Jags have lost by four scores each of the last two weeks. They are not good.
Washington (1-2) at Philadelphia (2-1) - After their Week 1 win against the Cowboys, the Redskins haven't looked so great. An overtime loss to the Texans and a loss in St. Louis leave them with a 1-2 record. McNabb will head back to Philadelphia and should be expecting a chorus of jeers from the crowd - it is Philly after all. Vick will try to lead the Eagles to a 3-1 record.
  • London: Eagles - McNabb vs Vick should be fun.
  • Griffin: Eagles - I expect Vick to finally struggle against the Washignton pass rush, but I don't think the Skins are good enough to win this very often.
  • Fittz: Eagles - The home team wins this game. This particular match-up is never any fun because I'd sooner wish for everyone on the field to have a heat stroke rather than wish for anyone on the field to have success.
  • Ponting: Eagles
  • Wall: Eagles
  • Worley: Eagles
  • Code: Eagles - Vick. Geezus. I love Mike Vick this. Who doesn't? Shut up, PETA.
  • Starkey: Redskins - Vick screws up a few times and the lovefest in Philadelphia starts to come to an end.
  • Perryman: Eagles-  Big game in the NFCE, bigger game for a few egos. Vick has the supporting cast.
Arizona (2-1) at San Diego (1-2) - Arizona somehow has two wins. They were bailed out by Janikowski forgetting how to kick last weekend but a win is a win. San Diego thrashed Jacksonville in Week 2 but has flanked that game with a loss in Kansas City and Seattle. Tough to figure out at this point.
  • London: Chargers- Blowout.
  • Griffin: Chargers - Angry Chargers win easily when they don't have to face Leon Washington on the road.
  • Fittz: Chargers - Stop losing to bad teams, Chargers. Think of the sacrifices Josh Lewin has made for you!!
  • Ponting: Chargers
  • Wall: Chargers
  • Worley: Chargers
  • Code: Chargers - SD.
  • Starkey: Chargers - I hate the Chargers but they won't lose this game as much as I want them to.
  • Perryman: Chargers - The Cards have two very soft wins and SD really needs this.
Chicago (3-0) at New York (1-2) - The Bears are 3-0 after a big win on Monday Night Football against the Packers. Now they'll return to prime time with Faith Hill intro and all for Sunday Night Football against the battered Giants. New York fans aren't happy - it was fun listening to WFAN this week.
  • London: Bears - The Bears are for real. Trust me.
  • Griffin: Giants - I'd take the Bears at home. I don't think they're as good as the record looks, but I do think they're a lot closer to the Giants than I thought three weeks ago.
  • Fittz: Bears - (Mild)Upset of the week!
  • Ponting: Giants
  • Wall: Giants
  • Worley: Bears
  • Code: Bears - Bear Down! Phase 4 moefoe.
  • Starkey: Bears - The Giants are banged up. The Bears are a better team, anyway.
  • Perryman: Giants - The Giants are going to be in street fight form. Will the Bears be able to match that?
New England (2-1) at Miami (2-1) - The Patriots won last week but their defense looked pretty exposed against a previously hapless Bills team. Maybe Ryan Fitzpatrick is good, maybe it was a fluke, or maybe the Patriots pass defense is just that bad. Miami lost a tough game at home against the Jets. Look for Chad Henne to target Brandon Marshall quite often. Neither team will want to be 0-2 against their opponent and Jets.
  • London: Patriots - The Patriots defense had so many holes last week...<insert joke here>
  • Griffin: Dolphins - For whatever reason, the Brady Patriots have a weird history of losses against the Dolphins. This time, it's a good running game against a weak Patriots defense and homefield advantage. I'll take the underdogs.
  • Fittz: Patriots - Did anyone else enjoy the fact that everyone was making fun of Tony Sparano for wearing sunglasses during a night game only to find out it is because he melted off his retinas working the fry-o-lator as a kid? I hope you feel bad about yourself, Deion Sanders.
  • Ponting: Patriots
  • Wall: Patriots
  • Worley: Dolphins
  • Code: Patriots - Tom Brady needs a haircut (says my wife). I'm going with Tom Brady and his bad hair cut (and bad defense). What does my wife know? He's hot.
  • Starkey: Patriots - Yup. Gronkowski and Hernandez should have significant roles.
  • Perryman: Patriots - The Patriots have so many weapons, and that defense can't be this bad, can it?

Year to Date Standings:

Fittz: 33-15 (10-6)
Ponting: 30-18 (10-6)
Griffin: 30-18 (8-8)
Wall: 29-19 (9-7)
Worley: 29-19 (9-7)
London: 28-20 (12-4) 
Perryman: 28-20 (8-8)
Starkey: 27-21 (10-6)
Code: 17-15 (6-10)
As always, you're encouraged to post your picks and try to beat us. It shouldn't be too hard to beat me but at least I'm trending upward still. 

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.