Our picks, best bets for every NFL Week 4 game

By VSiN Staff  (VSiN.com) 

October 2, 2022 10:38 AM

After another dramatic week, it’s on to Week 4 of the 2022 NFL season.

Throughout the season, our VSiN experts will combine to give their best bets on every game. Check back for our best bets for Monday night's game as we get closer to kickoff.

Odds are from DraftKings (unless noted) as of Thursday night.

Minnesota Vikings (-3, 43) vs. New Orleans Saints (in London)

Sunday, 9:30 a.m. ET

Dave Tuley: The Vikings have been an up-and-down team so far with a Week 1 win over the NFC North rival Packers, getting dominated by the Eagles in Week 2 before rallying to beat the Lions in Week 3 (and failing to cover as 6.5-point home favorites). 

Now, they’re 2.5-point favorites at most books and -3 at DraftKings against a Saints team that has lost two straight games, to the Buccaneers and Panthers, after barely beating the Falcons 27-26 in the opener. 

The Vikings are the better team right now, but not by a wide margin, and I’m not going to lay the points on the road chalk. Instead, this is the right time to take the underdog in a teaser through the key numbers of 3 and 7. My top team to pair with the Saints was the Falcons (+ 1.5 up to + 7.5), but that number is down to + 1 across the board, so let’s go with the Cardinals + 7.5 at the Panthers.

Pick: Saints + 9/Cardinals + 7.5 Teaser

Tennessee Titans at Indianapolis Colts (-3.5, 43)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Dave Tuley: I’ve already gone on record with the Titans getting more than a field goal in this coin-flip game at the Colts. Both teams earned their first wins of the season in Week 3 after slow starts (the Titans lost to the Giants and Bills before breaking through against the Raiders, while the Colts were 0-1-1 with a tie versus the Texans and a blowout loss to the Jaguars before rallying to beat the Chiefs on Sunday). 

These teams were expected to be battling for the AFC South title, but instead they’re chasing the first-place Jaguars with the loser of this game in a bigger hole. Titans QB Ryan Tannehill played better in the win over the Raiders, plus Derrick Henry is still a beast.

Pick: Titans + 3.5

Chicago Bears at New York Giants (-2.5, 39.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Dave Tuley: We have an unlikely matchup of 2-1 teams with the Bears visiting the Giants. The Bears are setting offensive football back by a decade, but it’s working as they continue to wait for Justin Fields to develop. The Bears are No. 6 in rushing offense and take on a Giants rushing defense that ranks No. 28.

I don’t think it matters if starting RB David Montgomery (knee, ankle injuries) is able to go as backup Khalil Herbert (157 yards, 2 TDs vs. Texans) might be the bigger threat anyway.

Pick: Bears + 3 (available at multiple books)

Buffalo Bills (-3, 51) at Baltimore Ravens

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Adam Burke: We’ll see if this game lives up to the billing and the lofty total — the only one in the 50s this week. Regardless, the Bills’ usage of James Cook has been an interesting storyline so far. Cook only saw three snaps in a Week 1 win against the Rams but has seen 29 over the last two weeks. In those 29 snaps, he has 12 carries, four receptions and six targets. The Bills are trying to use him whenever he’s on the field.

Compare that with Zack Moss, who only had seven carries, one catch and two targets in his 29 snaps over the last two weeks. It seems Moss has been passed on the “touches” depth chart. Devin Singletary continues to play the bulk of the snaps, but he only has 39 touches on 139 snaps.

The Bills appear to be grooming Cook as their X factor, and a game against the Ravens that projects to be high-scoring might be the perfect time to show him off. I’m making a speculative play that Cook scores a touchdown this week at 9-1. It’s a low-risk, high-reward bet, and First Touchdown at 50-1 isn’t a bad bet for pizza money, either.

Pick: James Cook Anytime TD (9-1)

Los Angeles Chargers (-5, 45) at Houston Texans  

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Jeff Parles: It took three games for the Chargers’ season to reach a crossroads. A popular preseason Super Bowl pick, the Chargers are 1-2 after getting blasted at home by Jacksonville last week. To make matters worse, their best offensive lineman, Rashawn Slater, is out for the season with a torn biceps, and their best defensive player, Joey Bosa, is on IR with a groin injury. I haven’t even mentioned that Keenan Allen has missed the last two games with an injury and Justin Herbert is still dealing with a rib cartilage injury.

The Texans have been competitive in all three games, tying Indianapolis and losing by one score to both Denver and Chicago. Houston returns home, which means we’ll likely get the good Davis Mills (he has drastic home-road splits in his young career). Away from Houston, Mills is averaging only 5.3 yards per passing attempt with four touchdowns and nine interceptions. At home, he is at 7.9 yards per attempt with an impressive 12 touchdowns and one interception.

Even with the injury concerns for the Chargers, I expect them to move the ball against Houston’s below-average defense. That coupled with the home version of Mills should push this game Over the total of 45.

Pick: Over 45

Seattle Seahawks at Detroit Lions (-4, 48)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Femi Abebefe: This is one of those plays that probably won’t feel good but you just have to bet. Everyone’s favorite movement, “Restore the Roar,” has been picking up steam as the Lions are again proving to be stellar against the spread. Detroit has followed up their 11-6 ATS record from last season with a 3-0 start at the window in 2022.

However, the Lions haven’t been this big of a favorite since coach Dan Campbell arrived in the Motor City. In fact, the Lions are laying points under Campbell for only the second time (Week 2 against Washington was the first). 

While I’m bullish on the Lions offense, they could be without some important pieces Sunday. Running back D’Andre Swift and wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown did not practice on Wednesday or Thursday, indicating that they’ll be questionable at best against Seattle. Also noteworthy, Detroit’s defense is allowing an average of 408 yards per game.

The Seahawks aren’t world-beaters offensively, but they’ve played two of the better defenses in Denver and San Francisco. Last week, when the level of competition dropped, they moved the ball with ease against Atlanta. The Lions defense is much closer to the Falcons than it is to the Broncos and 49ers.

I’d expect Seattle to have some success through the air and on the ground, thus making them a live road underdog. I think Detroit wins a close game, but anything more than a field goal is a bet, in my opinion, on the Seahawks.

Pick: Seahawks + 4.5 (Wynn)

New York Jets at Pittsburgh Steelers (-3, 41.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

A. Burke: Opinions seem to be pretty split on this game, as we’ve seen the line touch -4 and come back down, but there is one opinion that is not split. Based on the market reaction and the lack of an adjustment, nobody believes that Zach Wilson is a point spread upgrade to Joe Flacco. That doesn’t seem like a rousing endorsement with Wilson back off the shelf to face the Steelers.

The Jets are about 100 seconds worth of “Brownsing” away from being 0-3. The Steelers have been in every game this season, despite a very limited offense that has not been able to unlock Najee Harris’s immense potential. He only has 3.5 yards per touch so far, but this might be the game that gets him going.

Opponents have scored on 40% of their possessions against the Jets, who have allowed 2.34 points per drive (27th). The Jets are also 31st in third-down conversion rate against at 51.3%. Without a series of remarkably fortunate events against Cleveland, we could be talking about a Jets team that is 0-3 with three losses by double digits.

To his credit, Flacco passed for over 300 yards per game; Wilson have a single 300-yard game on his resume. The Jets may very well have made their offense worse by getting Wilson back and the defense isn’t anything to write home about. The Steelers have never had a losing season under Mike Tomlin and face the Bills, Bucs, Dolphins and Eagles before the bye, so if they want a chance to keep that streak alive, this is a circle the wagons game. I think they cover this number.

Pick: Steelers -3 (-120)

Jacksonville Jaguars at Philadelphia Eagles (-6.5, 45.5)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Femi Abebefe: As someone who was relatively high on the Jaguars, this fast start down in Duval County has been a pleasant sight to see. One can make an argument that this game should pit two 3-0 teams after red-zone woes cost the Jaguars in Week 1 against Washington.

It appears making a simple change at coach, from Urban Meyer to Doug Pederson, did the trick in unlocking a young and talented roster led by former No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence.

Jacksonville has impressive back-to-back wins over the Colts and Chargers, two teams many expected to see in the playoffs — and possibly winning their respective divisions. However, both situations were very advantageous for the Jaguars. In Week 2, the Jags beat up an injury-riddled Colts team that was without wide receivers Michael Pittman and Alec Pierce, as well as All-Pro linebacker Shaquille Leonard, who has yet to make his 2022 regular-season debut. Then last week, the Jaguars got the Chargers with Justin Herbert playing with a broken rib cartilage and a number of key players out with injuries. That’s not the situation this week as they travel to Philadelphia.

Sunday will be a step up in competition as they face a healthy Eagles squad that has been the NFL’s most impressive team through three weeks. Pederson’s revenge be damned — I’ll lay the points with Philadelphia.

Pick: Eagles -6.5

Washington Commanders at Dallas Cowboys (-3, 41)

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

A. Burke: The Commanders are being outgained by 1.5 yards per play through three games and have only forced one turnover. There is limited margin for error with this team, as they’ve only scored on 23.7% of their offensive possessions. Opponents have 15 red zone trips to Washington’s eight thus far, even though the Commanders are a top-six team in third-down conversion rate for and against.

What that means is that teams are having a lot of early-down success against Washington. Will the Cowboys be able to take advantage? To this point, Dallas has mustered almost six yards per play on first down. That should allow them to stay ahead of the chains and continue to put the pressure on Washington’s beleaguered defense.

Dallas’ defense comes into this game third in Pressure% per Pro-Football-Reference and leads the league in sacks with 13. Given the indecision (or outright bad decisions) from Carson Wentz, this profiles as the type of game where the Cowboys are getting into third-and-manageable, while the Commanders are tasked with converting third-and-long situations.

Through three games, Dallas has only allowed four trips inside the red zone. That trend should continue this week, which gives the Cowboys a great chance at covering the field goal spread.

Pick: Cowboys -3

Cleveland Browns (-1, 47.5) at Atlanta Falcons

Sunday, 1 p.m. ET

Adam Burke: We saw a noticeable adjustment to the Browns-Falcons total after both offenses had success in Week 3, but I still think there’s room to bet the Over. We have two really strong rushing attacks here, particularly with the Browns, who are second in Rush DVOA through three games. The Falcons are eighth thanks to a boost from Cordarrelle Patterson, who already has two 100-yard games this season.

These are also two suspect defensive teams against the run, as the Browns are 26th in Rush DVOA and the Falcons are 27th. Neither team has fared well defending the pass, either. 

The Browns offense is actually sixth in Pass DVOA, as Jacoby Brissett has developed a nice rapport with Amari Cooper after a lackluster Week 1 showing. The Browns have added more to their route trees and Brissett has thrived with more reps in the system.

The Falcons have the third-lowest pressure rate per Pro-Football-Reference and the lowest Hurry%, so they are unlikely to create negative plays. The Browns defense has had several coverage busts already this season and is now missing Anthony Walker Jr., who could be a tremendous loss in a game against Patterson and tight end Kyle Pitts, who could be a matchup nightmare.

The Browns, who have also failed to consistently get pressure, will probably be without Myles Garrett and have a banged-up Jadeveon Clowney on the other side. The two offenses should be moving forward with regularity and that should lead to points.

Pick: Over 47.5

Arizona Cardinals at Carolina Panthers (-1.5, 43.5)

Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ET

Adam Burke: The Cardinals were expected to have a tough time early thanks to a difficult schedule and limited options at wide receiver with DeAndre Hopkins suspended for PEDs. Sure, Arizona should be 0-3 heading across the country to face Carolina this week, but the Cardinals have also played three playoff teams from last season.

The Panthers cannot be mentioned in the same breath as any playoff team. This is a big step down in class for Kyler Murray and Co. Arizona’s secondary was under the spotlight coming into the season, being one of the worst in football, but Baker Mayfield appears unlikely to take advantage. He has thrown for only 183 yards per game despite connecting on a few big plays. He’s been sacked on 10% of his dropbacks and has completed just 51.9% of his passes. This is as good of a matchup as the Cardinals defense can hope for.

The Panthers defense benefited from three takeaways last week against the Saints while allowing well over 300 passing yards. The Browns ran the ball down their throats. And the Giants just have a limited offense. Murray’s running ability should be a big key in this one and should free up some throwing lanes against a Carolina defense that has very little margin for error.

Lookahead lines had Arizona favored and I still believe they should be.

Pick: Cardinals + 1.5

Denver Broncos at Las Vegas Raiders (-2.5, 45.5)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET

Wes Reynolds: The Raiders are the NFL’s lone 0-3 team. However, the “Silver and Black” have lost those three games by a combined 13 points, and they’d be 1-2 if they hadn’t blown a 20-0 halftime lead in Week 2 against Arizona. 

Denver’s defense has carried the team as the Broncos rank third in total defense, allowing only 251.3 yards per game. Ordinarily, I would gravitate toward an underdog that has the better running game and the better defense. However, Denver looks overrated right now at 2-1. Instead of “Let Russ Cook,” Russell Wilson looks cooked. Based on how he has played this season, Chef Russ would be kicked out of Hell’s Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay for continuing to send up plates of raw halibut and undercooked steak. Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett also looks overwhelmed. 

In hindsight, the Raiders were probably due to regress a little after catching a lot of breaks at the end of last season, but the dropoff has been a bit too severe in the first three weeks. Expect a big effort from the home team (the home team is 10-2 in the last 12 games in this series) as the Raiders get off the schneid. 

Pick: Raiders - 145 ML

New England Patriots at Green Bay Packers (-9, 40.5)

Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET

Dave Tuley: This was my second early Week 4 play (along with the Titans + 3.5) when the openers came out Sunday afternoon. The advance line on this game was Packers -6.5, but it reopened -7.5 after the Packers beat the Buccaneers. 

As word spread about the severity of Mac Jones’ high ankle sprain late in the Patriots’ 37-26 loss to the Ravens, the line was adjusted again to -9.5. With the news that Jones will miss several weeks and veteran Brian Hoyer would be pressed into service, this game crossed 10 to Packers -10.5 before getting bet back to 10 and has now settled at 9.5 at most books. 

I think that’s an overadjustment, so I’m taking the Pats + 9.5 (I also bet it at + 10.5). Bill Belichick will certainly put Hoyer into the best position to succeed, plus the Packers haven’t looked like world-beaters. They nearly failed to cover as 10-point favorites against the Bears and Aaron Rodgers didn’t look all that great in a 14-12 win versus the Buccaneers (or a 23-7 loss to. the Vikings for that matter).

Pick: Patriots + 9.5

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