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Week 4 NFL picks

Posted by Zuri Berry, Boston.com Staff  September 26, 2013 05:29 PM

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Ravens (-3.5) at Bills (+3.5) -- We should all have more faith in Joe Flacco. At 2-1, he's delivered for Baltimore. And the Ravens may get an extra nudge with the possible return of Ray Rice Sunday.
My pick: Ravens

Bengals (-5.5) at Browns (+5.5) -- Brian Hoyer is a great story. But the Bengals, with Geno Atkins on that defensive line, are to be reckoned with.
My pick: Bengals

Bears (+3) at Lions (-3) -- The Bears (3-0) are off to a phenomenal start and, yes, a large part of their success is because of Jay Cutler (94.2 QB rating, 6 TDs, 3 INTs, 67.3 completion rate). It helps that the Bears have a tough run defense, ranked eighth-best in the league.
My pick: Bears

Giants (+4.5) at Chiefs (-4.5) -- I'm coming around to this notion of Alex Smith as a dink and dunk quarterback. Low on turnovers (0 interceptions, 1 fumble) and high on efficiency (61 completion percentage). He's the exact opposite of the Eli Manning-led Giants (13 giveaways, -9 turnover differential).
My pick: Chiefs

Steelers (-1.5) at Vikings (+1.5) -- Both are winless teams. But the Vikings have played competitively to the end against the Lions (34-24), Bears (31-30), and Browns (31-27). The Steelers, playing a common opponent in the Bears, were smoked last week 40-23.
My pick: Vikings

Cardinals (+2.5) at Buccaneers (-2.5) -- Vincent Jackson (ribs) and Mike Williams are both banged up and the Buccaneers are installing a new quarterback, Mike Glennon, to fill in for the woeful Josh Freeman. That might be too much for the home team to overcome.
My pick: Cardinals

Colts (-9) at Jaguars (+9) -- This is the easiest pick of the week, every week.
My pick: Colts

Seahawks (-3) at Texans (+3) -- After this game, I think the AFC will realize how tough an opponent the Seahawks are compared to the rest of the league.
My pick: Seahawks

Jets (+4) at Titans (-4) -- The Titans (2-1) have managed to keep Chris Johnson involved (69 carries, 256 yards) and their defense is the seventh best in the NFL. Geno Smith (65.0 quarterback rating, 53.9 completion percentage, 6 INTs) needs to be careful with the rock.
My pick: Titans

Eagles (+11) at Broncos (-11) -- Just a hunch, but the Broncos are going to go 15-1 this season. This is not the week you need to worry about them losing.
My pick: Broncos

Redskins (+3) at Raiders (-3) -- Oakland quarterback Terrelle Pryor missed practice on Wednesday with concussion symptoms. It sucks for the Silver and Black because he's also the team's top rusher (112 yards). Even if he plays, he's going up against an underperforming defense that's likely to start clicking soon.
My pick: Redskins

Cowboys (-2) at Chargers (+2) -- I will readily admit that I look at the talent on the Cowboys roster and seem to forget about things like chemistry, history, reason, etc. But when you consider they have the second best run defense in the NFL right now, and DeMarco Murray is still healthy, I wonder if you should forget those things too.
My pick: Cowboys

Patriots (+2) at Falcons (-2) -- In my preseason predictions for each game of the Patriots season, I anticipated that the Falcons deliver them their first loss. I expect Matt Ryan and the gang to deliver.
My pick: Falcons

Dolphins (+6) at Saints (-6) -- The Dolphins have won tough games against the Falcons and Colts. Ryan Tannehill has looked phenomenal (94.3 quarterback rating). Despite the prospects of a Drew Brees beatdown in the secondary, I expect this game to be close.
My pick: Dolphins

Last week: 8-8
Season: 20-28

Zuri Berry can be reached at zberry@boston.com. Follow him on Twitter @zuriberry and on Google+.

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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