Analysis Mac's Machinations

Mac’s Machinations: NFL Week 4 Picks

Last week, quite frankly, I sucked. The NFL Gods giveth and sometimes the NFL Gods kick you square in the nuts. I was a paltry 6-10 ATS and 7-8-1 Straight Up. There is nothing left to do but get back up and try it again. Lines courtesy of my good friends at the MGM Grand.

Thursday, October 1st 8:20 pm ET

Denver Broncos at New York Jets Line: Denver -3 O/U: 40

God what a terrible game. I’m still of the opinion that the NFL needs to take the Thursday night concept out back and give it the Old Yeller treatment. The players and coaches hate it, the quality of play is usually subpar, and the matchups are usually snoozefests. The best thing about this game is that it is a battle of stupidity at the Coaching level. Uncle Clock Management Vic Fangio vs. Taco Adam Gase. The battle of the idiots. The Jets are on another freaking level of sucking so I’m going to ride the anti-Jet train as long as I can. The O/U is an unheard of 40 in a league where overs have been busting wide open like crazy. I’m not sure the Jets and Broncos can hit 40, however. I’ll stay with the Broncos to cover the 3 points. I think Vic will make less stupid decisions than Adam.

Denver 20, N.Y. Jets 10

Sunday, October 4 1 pm ET Games

Indianapolis Colts at Chicago Bears Line: Colts -2.5 O/U: 45

The Bears finally made the wise decision to play Nick Foles over Mitchell Trubisky in the latter phases of the Atlanta game and it ended up costing me a money line parlay that I had. Foles will now be the starter moving forward. The Colts beat the shiz out of the Jets but that’s not anything to be proud of at this juncture. I’m taking the Foles train at home as an underdog against Phillip Rivers on the road. Expect at least two Rivers’ interceptions, he can’t help himself. Bears take care of business now that the guy drafted over Patrick Mahomes (Trubisky) is on the bench. Whoever made that draft decision should be banned from any decision making in any aspect of life. I wouldn’t trust him to order dinner.

Chicago 24, Indianapolis 17

New Orleans Saints at Detroit Lions Line: Saints -4 O/U: 54

The freaking Lions cost me big time by going into Arizona and beating the red hot Cardinals. Who woulda thunkit? Going into the season one would think that the line for this game would be Saints by at least 10 points. Oh how the mighty have fallen. We need to all be honest with ourselves and admit that Drew Brees just isn’t that good anymore. The arm strength has fallen fast. Still, I give the edge in this game on surrounding talent and coaching to New Orleans. Matt Patricia should be getting Sean Payton’s coffee. Saints take out their frustrations on the hapless Lions.

New Orleans 34, Detroit 17

Arizona Cardinals at Carolina Panthers Line: Cardinals -3.5 O/U: 52

Oh Arizona. Why did you go and break my heart last week? I’m going to choose to believe that this was just a fluke. Let’s pretend this didn’t happen and move on. Arizona is still that beautiful girlfriend you have that got drunk and cheated on you one night and swears it will never happen again. You agree to take her back because she is so freaking hot. So Detroit never happened. Carolina also shocked me by going into LA and beating the Chargers. Amazing what a week to prepare for Justin Herbert did for the defense. BTW, do we know if the Charger team medic who punctured Tyrod Taylor’s lung has been fired yet? I have a sneaky suspicion that he might have been friends of the Herbert family. (I kid) Anyway, I like Kyler and Ryan Gosling to rebound in a big way here. She won’t cheat on me again. I swear. I know. I believe her.

Arizona 35, Carolina 13

Jacksonville Jaguars at Cincinnati Bengals Line: Bengals -3 O/U: 49

Jacksonville laid a huge egg against Miami last week while the Bengals tied the floundering Eagles. Both of these teams are still enigmas. Who will show up? While Joe Burrow seems to be the real deal, he is not going to survive the season if that offensive line does not start blocking better. Burrow has been sacked a league leading 14 times already this season. Minshew is not far behind at 10. I would not bet much on this game as it could easily go either way. My hunch is to play the over.

Jacksonville 31, Cincinnati 24

Cleveland Browns at Dallas Cowboys Line: Cowboys -4.5 O/U: 55

Cleveland struggled early but put away the fighting Football Team from Washington City last week and now heads down to Big D to face off with a Cowboys team that competed with but ultimately lost to Seattle. The Dallas defense is abysmal. The question is, again, what Cleveland shows up. If the Cleveland Amanda Bynes Browns show up then Dallas should crush her/them by 21 plus. If the talented Browns show up then this game has all the makings of a fun shoot out. Either way, the Dallas defense hasn’t stopped anyone yet. I still trust Dak more than Baker. I give the Cowboys the edge at home. I think Amanda rears her ugly self and Cleveland gets beat big.

Dallas 31, Cleveland 14

Minnesota Vikings at Houston Texans Line: Texans -4 O/U: 54.5

This game is in flux right now because of the COVID outbreak that occurred after the Titans staff reported several outbreaks following the Vikings game. Assuming the game takes place as scheduled, we have a game featuring two winless, desperate teams. Despite Bill O’Brien, I think Houston will win this game big. DeShaun Watson will have a tremendous game against a porous Viking defense. Houston looked good last week in spots against Pittsburgh and had a chance to win that game. The Viking secondary would allow a blind QB to score on it.

Houston 27, Minnesota 10

Seattle Seahawks at Miami Dolphins Line: Seahawks -6.5 O/U: 54.5

Going into the season I seriously believed that Pete Carroll was way past his prime. His tendency to focus on old school running/ball control football at the expense of an extremely talented QB in Russell Wilson led me to believe that this would be a lost season. I am glad to be proven wrong. Mainly because it makes Mina happy. A happy Mina is great TV. An angry Mina is also great TV. Wilson is balling out so far this year. The Dolphins are playing competitive football and are sticking with Fitz for now at QB. He, however, is nowhere near the level Wilson is. The Seattle defense has been shaky. Gone are the days of the Legion of Boom as now it appears that anyone with a pulse can throw on the Seahawks. Expect a lot of shootouts this year in Seattle games. Does that include this game? I don’t think so. Notice that Vegas has reacted to the abundance of over games by raising the overs this week. I think this game will hit under. I don’t see Miami keeping up with Seattle.

Seattle 31, Miami 14

LA Chargers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Line: Bucs -7 O/U: 43.5

Justin Herbert was brought down to earth last week as the Panthers did an effective job of making the rookie look like a rookie. The Charger defense, which held Patrick Mahomes in check for 3 quarters, couldn’t stop a Panthers offense that hasn’t exactly been setting the world on fire. Meanwhile Tommy and friends went into Denver and trounced the Broncos. The loss to the Saints in week one is looking worse in hindsight now that Brees and co. have been struggling. However, the Buccaneers offense is getting better every week. Look for that trend to continue here.

Tampa Bay 27, LA Chargers 16

Pittsburgh Steelers at Tennessee Titans Line: OFF O/U: OFF

This game has been postponed.

Baltimore Ravens at Washington Football Team Line: Ravens -13 O/U: 45.5

The Ravens will be pissed off after the thrashing they took at the hands of the KC Chiefs last Monday. Lamar Jackson only had 92 yards passing and looked confused many times. The Chiefs defense may be that good or Baltimore’s offense may be that bad. Granted, Baltimore destroyed the first two teams they played but I think the jury is still out on the overall perspective on the Ravens. The Washington offense is nowhere near on the level of the Chiefs so the Ravens defense should have an easy time. I just don’t think it is 13 points better than Washington. I’ll take the 13.

Baltimore 31, Washington 21

Sunday, October 4th, 4:05 ET N.Y. Giants at LA Rams Line: Rams -13 O/U: 48

This line opened at -9 and has ballooned to 13. I think the Rams cover either very easily. They should have beaten Buffalo last week if they played half as good in the first half as they did the second half. Maybe the 2nd week on the east coast was a factor. Anyway, the Giants stink and play in the worst division in football while the Rams are very good and play in the toughest division in football. I look for the Rams to get out to a big lead early and then play ball control to put the Giants away without taking too many risks. I think the under is a good play here as well. I don’t expect the Giants to score many points.

LA Rams 31, NY Giants 7

Sunday, October 4th, 3:25 ET Games

New England Patriots at Kansas City Chiefs Line: Chiefs -7 O/U: 53

Lost in the hype of the Chiefs Super Bowl title defense has been the schedule they have played. They have played the defending AFC South Champs, a tough divisional opponent in the Chargers, the defending AFC North Champs, and now the defending AFC East Champion Patriots. While the Patriots may not have the same swagger as year’s past, Belichick has done a good job so far creating a new offense based around Cam Newton. Their only loss was a tough one to Mina Kimes’ Seahawks. That being said, the Chiefs should easily beat the Patriots by more than 7. The Chiefs will always have a special place of hatred in their hearts for the 2018 AFC Championship loss to New England. The only question is whether the Chiefs start slow as they have been prone to do, sans last week. The Chiefs defense looked amazing in shutting down Lamar Jackson to only 92 yards passing on Monday. Can they repeat it against an older, less effective Cam Newton? I think so.

Chiefs 32, Patriots 17

Buffalo Bills at Las Vegas Raiders Line: Bills -3 O/U: 52.5

The Raiders can score points but that defense leaves a lot to be desired. Josh Allen has reached another level at QB this season. He is head and shoulders above the 2019 version of Josh Allen, the one who had sporadic outbreaks of inaccuracy and turnovers. The addition of Stefan Diggs and another year of growth have done wonders for Allen. However, I’m smelling an upset here. The Bills were involved in an emotional rollercoaster against the Rams and they are prime for a let down traveling to the west. Expect a lot of points here. The Raiders pull off the home upset.

Raiders 34, Bills 28

Sunday October 4th, 8:20 pm ET

Philadelphia Eagles at San Francisco 49ers Line: 49ers -7 O/U: 46

This line opened up at -3 and has jumped to -7. San Fran returns from their two week NY vacation with wins over the hapless Giants and Jets. Here they face an Eagles team that is about at the point of smashing the panic button. The one thing the Eagles have going for them is the division that they are in. I think this game will be close. The Eagles desperately need a win but the west coast travel and late start time will be a factor. The 49ers are still banged up and primed for an upset. I think the Eagles will eek out a much needed win.

Philadelphia 24, San Francisco 21

Monday Night, October 5th 8:15 ET

Atlanta Falcons at Green Bay Packers Line: Packers -7.5 O/U: 56.5

Poor Atlanta. If there ever was a shell-shocked team in the league, this is it. Absolutely NO lead is safe with this group. Evil Aaron Rodgers is licking his chops to face this horrid ATL secondary. No cause for ATL fans to panic this week about blowing a lead as Rodgers will put this game out of hand early. The Packers are 2nd in the league in total yards on offense while the Falcons are 31st in yards allowed on defense. Expect a beat down.

Packers 37, Falcons 13

Lock of the week: Chiefs -7

Parlay of the Week: Chiefs, Packers

Teaser of the week: 6 points: Colts, Seahawks, Ravens, Texans, Rams, Buccaneers

Underdog of the week: Eagles +7 over 49ers

Record Last week: ATS: 6-10 Straight Up: 7-8-1

Overall: ATS: 22-26 Straight Up: 29-18-1

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