NFL Week 4 best bets and betting odds
Week 4 of the NFL season brings us a lot of closely-lined games, so hopefully it will be a fun and dramatic Sunday around the league. There are some really good matchups, but also some matchups between lesser teams where the difference between the squads is rather minimal. We have a lot of games this week hovering around the key number of 3 and that always makes for some interesting betting action.
Groups will massage and manipulate the lines to push them around and get target numbers. Tyler Shoemaker talked earlier this week about when to buy points in the NFL and that could be a very relevant discussion with so many 3s or numbers adjacent to that on the board.
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Here are my favorite Week 4 NFL picks:
(Odds as of September 28, 10:30 a.m. PT)
The Jaguars get to play at home now, as they’ll be over in London for a couple of weeks. The travel and the fanfare are second nature to them at this point, but we can’t always say that about their opponents. In this case, the Falcons haven’t played across the pond in a couple of seasons, but the roster looks substantially different now than it did back in 2021 when they beat the Jets 27-20.
There are some wires crossed with the Jags right now, as they are really playing some poor football, which was not the expectation. The thought was that Doug Pederson would really get this team going right from the jump after such a great second half of last season. Jacksonville started 3-7 last year before finishing 9-8 as the AFC South winner.
Atlanta’s one trick on offense is a good one, but this is still a team that ranks 20th in EPA/play with such a great running game. I have confidence in Jacksonville to improve their 29th-ranked EPA/play mark on offense. As much as we praise Arthur Smith and the Falcons’ rushing attack, it ranks 19th in Success Rate, which is actually behind Jacksonville. Trevor Lawrence has been the bigger problem for them, which I can’t see being sustainable.
The Jags rank third in Rush EPA against and Desmond Ridder is not trusted to throw a lot of passes for Atlanta, so I think they’ll find some tough sledding across the pond and the Jags will look better in a friendly setting.
Pick: Jaguars -3 (would only play at -3)
I don’t think that the Commanders are a bad team, but last week was an eye-opening experience with just how far away they are from competing against the NFL’s top teams. Philadelphia is way closer to Buffalo than they are to the Cardinals and Broncos. It was like watching two teams playing different sports last week between the Bills and Commanders. The five turnovers helped, but Sam Howell was harassed all game long and the Bills used a balanced offensive attack to win by comfortable margin.
Philly was firing on all cylinders against the Buccaneers, even while battling an illness that rolled through the locker room. The first two weeks weren’t all that impressive, but Nick Sirianni and his team really buttoned up last week and came away with the easy victory.
The Eagles come in ranked 11th in EPA/play, but they are first in the NFL in Rush Success Rate. Washington is 28th in EPA/play and has run the ball effectively, but running against the front seven of the Eagles and first-round pick Jalen Carter is not an easy task.
Defensively, Philly brings in a top-10 unit by EPA/play and a top-five rush defense in Success Rate and the best defense in Rush EPA. That puts a lot of pressure on Howell to move the Washington offense and I’m not convinced that will happen.
Pick: Eagles -8 (would play at -8 or lower)