Week 4 predictions

Friday, September 27, 2019, Vol. 43, No. 39

Falcons 27, Titans 17: The Titans have won when an underdog and lost as a favorite thus far in all three games this year. Unless the defense steps up and forces a couple of turnovers, or Derrick Henry runs like he did in some of the SEC Championship Games he played in in Atlanta, it could be another tough day for the Titans.

Packers 24, Eagles 23: Philly lost unexpectedly at home to the Lions on Sunday. The Packers are 3-0 under Matt LeFleur. There’s the possibility of some bounce back by the Eagles, but a nighttime atmosphere at Lambeau may be tough to overcome.

Redskins 21, Giants 17: The battle for who might not finish last in the NFC East. The Giants got a game-winner last week from Daniel Jones, their first-round pick. The Redskins still have yet to unveil their first-round guy Dwayne Haskins.

Chiefs 35, Lions 27: The Chiefs offense looks quite capable of traveling well. The Lions can put up points too, but asking their defense to slow down Patrick Mahomes and company may be too tall of an order, even at Ford Field.

Ravens 26, Browns 24: Battle of the 2018 first-rounders in this one. We’ll give the edge to Lamar Jackson in this game, just because the Ravens are at home. But don’t be too shocked if Baker Mayfield conjures up some late-game magic and pulls it out.

Colts 37, Raiders 17: The Raiders showed Sunday in Minnesota that they aren’t exactly road warriors. The Colts appear solid across the board, and Frank Reich is doing a great job of managing the offense and adjusting it to what Jacoby Brissett does well.

Chargers 41, Dolphins 10: The Chargers, coming off a tough home loss versus the Texans, get the equivalent of a bye week win in Miami against the Dolphins, who didn’t count on the Jets losing Sam Darnold in the race to be the worst team in the league right now.

Patriots 31, Bills 16: Who would have figured that the Bills would match the Patriots at 3-0 heading into this one? But there they are still perfect after three weeks. That’s nice. But the Patriots are on a different level altogether as their defense has yet to allow a TD. Oh, and they still have that Tom Brady guy, too.

Texans 23, Panthers 16: Carolina got its first win with Kyle Allen, not Cam Newton, at quarterback Sunday versus the Bucs. Things get a little tougher with Deshaun Watson and the Texans in Houston on Sunday. Houston is coming off a nice road win over the Chargers and looks to be the class of the AFC South early.

Rams 33, Bucs 20: The Bucs are struggling and are in a similar dilemma with Jameis Winston as the Titans are with Marcus Mariota. The Rams offense has been a little more up and down than expected, but the defense is still plenty strong.

Seahawks 27, Cardinals 20: Russell Wilson and the Seahawks were stunned by the Saints at home. This game matches the veteran scrambler in Wilson against the Cardinals young mobile quarterback Kyler Murray. Should be fun to watch to say the least.

Vikings 17, Bears 16: Can Kirk Cousins finally win a meaningful game on the road? The Bears defense is top notch and Cousins has been a model of inconsistency in big games. But if the Vikings can be effective running the ball and keep Cousins from having to throw 40 passes, maybe they can take advantage of the Bears’ inconsistency at quarterback with Mitch Trubisky and pull off the upset.

Jaguars 20, Broncos 16: It looks strange to see the Broncos at 0-3 and in the AFC West cellar. The question for this one is, who do you trust more, the aging and fading Joe Flacco for Denver or sudden folk hero Gardner Minshew for the Jags. Looks like at least one more week before the Minshew bubble bursts.

Cowboys 27, Saints 23: The Saints, with the help of defense and special teams, got a win without Drew Brees Sunday in Seattle. Teddy Bridgewater may be beginning to knock off some of the rust, but even in the Superdome, it may be hard to hang with the suddenly potent Cowboys offense.

Steelers 16, Bengals 13: Both teams at 0-3. No Ben Roethlisberger, Antonio Brown or LeVeon Bell in Pittsburgh. Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Instead of showing this one, can we just dig out an old Steelers-Bengals matchup with Terry Bradshaw and Ken Anderson dueling it out from circa 1973?

— Terry McCormick