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NFL Pro Football 2013 Week 4 Picks

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Fearless Rick's NFL Week 4 Picks - Early Games

Welcome to the very best in winning NFL and College Football picks.
Rick Gagliano | September 26-29, 2013

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

Thursday, September 26

(Byes: Carolina, Green Bay)

San Francisco 49ers (-3, 41 1/2) at St. Louis Rams, 8:25 pm - San francisco is having serious issues, after losing two straight, both of those losses being rather substantial, including last week's 27-7 drubbing by the Colts, in which the 49ers turned the ball over twice and could not stop Indianapolis running backs, who gained 179 yards on 39 carries.

Running the ball on the 'Niners would seem to be a template for defeating them, however, the Rams don't have a running game, held to 25 yards in their 31-7 beat-down by the Cowboys.

Noting the obvious, it should be pointed out that the Rams play San Fran tough every time, losing by three points, 16-13 last December and tying 24-24 in San Francisco last November.

The Rams get points and the nod, because the 49ers are struggling offensively and the defense doesn't seem as ferocious as last year's squad.

Prediction: Rams 23 49ers 20

Sunday, September 29

Baltimore Ravens (-3 1/2, 44) at Buffalo Bills, 1:00 pm - After the Ravens hammered the Texans, 30-9, and the Bills flailed around indecisively in a 27-20 loss to the Jets, having multiple opportunities to tie the game in the fourth quarter and failing to cash in on any of them, the Ravens appear the obvious choice as the Bills revert to their old form of being just another also-ran.

Baltimore didn't win the Super Bowl because they're not prepared and they will pound Buffalo relentlessly, whether or not Ray Rice plays.

Since giving up seven TDs in their opening weekend loss to the Broncos, the Ravens have only given up field goals - five of them - in back-to-back wins over Cleveland and Houston. Buffalo's offense is struggling to find first downs and the Ravens will make that chore even more difficult.

Prediction: Ravens 31 Bills 9

Cincinnati Bengals (-4 1/2, 42) at Cleveland Browns, 1:00 pm - Both teams are coming off wins, Cleveland getting their first W of the season in a 31-27 comeback victory at Minnesota last week while the Bengals scored 20 straight points to overtake the Packers in Green Bay for a 34-30 win and are 2-1.

Games between these AFC North rivals are usually close, and the Browns have the dubious distinction of being underdogs in their own stadium, though that's somewhat without reason, the Browns holding a 4-2 edge ATS against Cincinnati when they are are at home.

The Bengals won last week by virtue of a key late turnover, but look for Cleveland to hold onto the ball, keep this one close with a chance to win it late.

Prediction: Browns 23 Bengals 20

--- Story continues below ---

Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions (-1 1/2, 47), 1:00 pm - A key NFC central match-p looming here, as the Bears are 3-0, but the Lions have looked solid, winning two of three and now are at home, where they are 5-2 ATS in their last seven when playing the Bears at home.

Chicago's defense has been just good enough to get three wins, but they're allowing an average of 24.7 points per game, while the Lions are a little better, giving up 23 per outing.

On home turf, the Lions should have their way against the Bears offensively, and the defense is probably good enough to keep Chicago at bay late in the game, setting up a potential tie for first place in the division, an edge for Detroit, with a head-to-head victory.

Prediction: Lions 30 Bears 24

Seattle Seahawks (-2 1/2, 41 1/2) at Houston Texans, 1:00 pm - Texas looked confused and disoriented for three quarters against the Ravens last week after taking an early, 6-0, lead, and the Ravens took over in the second quarter on a Pick-6 and an 82-yard punt return for a score by Tanden Doss, after which the Texans were unable to respond in any way.

Houston struggled mightily in the red zone, but have a week to get things right before hosting the powerhouse Seahawks, who are 3-0 after belittling Carolina, San Francisco and Jacksonville in succession.

Here is the quandary: Houston is 6-1 SU its last seven at home, but 1-6 ATS in its last seven games. Since they are getting a few points here, they can ride home field advantage to a much-needed win as the Seahawks suffer a letdown on the road.

Prediction: Texans 27 Seahawks 24

Indianapolis Colts (-9 1/2, 43) at Jacksonville Jaguars, 1:00 pm - If one is looking for an early dark horse to make the Super Bowl from the AFC, look no further than the Colts, who are 3-0 and on the road against a fellow AFC South opponent, one who they beat 27-10 in Jacksonville last season after dropping a 22-17 decision earlier in the year at home.

The 0-3 Jags, possibly the worst team in the NFL, are 1-7 ATS their last eight games, while the Colts have won 11 of their last 15 overall.

As one-sided as this game appears, it would be a stretch to take the Jaguars against the hot hand of Andrew Luck and the Colts' resurgent running game. Blowout of the week in store here.

Prediction: Colts 45 Jaguars 10

--- Story continues below ---

New York Giants at Kansas City Chiefs (-4 1/2, 44), 1:00 pm - As impossible as it is to believe, the Giants are 0-3, while the Chiefs - 2-14 last season - are 3-0 and get a home game here against a very disorganized and stumbling Giants team.

Eli Manning isn't getting protection in the pocket, there's no running game to speak of and the defense has allowed a whopping 115 points, worst in the league.

Besides all that, the Giants are on the road for the second straight week, staring 0-4 straight in the face. KC is a tough place to turn things around, and the Giants have shown little interest in doing so. KC will run roughshod over them.

Prediction: Chiefs 30 Giants 10

Pittsburgh Steelers (-3, 41 1/2) at Minnesota Vikings (London), 1:00 pm - What a horrible choice for the NFL to show the Londoners at Wembley Stadium. The teams are both 0-3 and Pittsburgh, in particular, has looked downright horrid on offense early in games, generally getting blown away in the first half, making the second haves of their games boring and uninteresting.

Minnesota QB, Christian Ponder, is listed as out, which is not such a big deal, since he's only somewhat of a caretaker QB, but could be the difference, especially if the Steelers can hold onto the ball and score early.

A horrible game, with the prospects of both teams dim for the playoffs, though the Steelers will probably be able to contain the Viking defense and ride Roethlisberger's arm to victory.

Prediction: Steelers 24 Vikings 14

Arizona Cardinals at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2 1/2, 40 1/2), 1:00 pm - Tough call here as the 1-2 Cardinals head to Tampa to take on the 0-3 Bucs, a team that's shown some improvement, but has yet to see results on the field.

Tampa Bay has scored an NFC-low 34 points but the defense has held them in games somewhat, allowing 57 points, though the bulk of that came last week in a 23-3 loss at New England.

The Cardinal defense isn't very good, but will look great against the Buccaneers, setting up good field position for their potentially explosive offense. If Arizona can not turn the ball over, this could get ugly.

Prediction: Cardinals 28 Buccaneers 10

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2013, 2014, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.


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