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Sept. 28, 2013

NFL week four predictions

by Samuel Popper, Sports Editor, Abel Chanyalew, Online Sports Editor, Jacob Popper, Op/Ed Editor and Rohan Oprisko, Sports Editor
Following a crazy week three, what will week four have in store? Last week, the Chiefs upset the Eagles to move to 3-0 and the Dolphins upset the Falcons to move to 3-0 as well. In addition, the Ravens routed the Texans, the Browns took down the Vikings, the Colts defeated the heavily favored 49ers and the Panthers shut out the Giants. Now the Dolphins and Chiefs look to stay undefeated as they face off against the Saints and Giants, respectively. Also the Sunday night match up, the Patriots and the Falcons, looks like it could be a good one.

As for our experts, it was an off week for everyone. Only Jacob managed to go over the .500 mark at 9-7 for the week. Although Sam retains his lead, Jacob is now only two games behind. The standings go as follows:

Standings
The Colts' defense led the way for Indy last week in a win over San Francisco. Courtesy of colts.com
The Colts' defense led the way for Indy last week in a win over San Francisco.

1. Sam 32-16
2. Jacob 30-18
3. Abel 28-20
4. Rohan 24-24

49ers at Rams
Sam: 49ers
Jacob: 49ers
Abel: 49ers
Rohan: 49ers

Sam says:
Both these teams displayed troubling performances that donít make me confident on either team. However, 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick will be by far the most electrifying player on the field. And expect a bounce back day from the 49ers' defense.
Jacob says:
Despite the disappointing loss to Indy last week, look for the Niners to bounce back with a big road win.
Abel says:
The 49ers lost back-to-back games for the first time in the Jim Harbaugh era last Sunday, and they, especially Colin Kaepernick, have heard all the talk of panic in San Francisco. The 49ers will come out angry and will bounce back against the disappointing Rams.
Rohan says:
Although they have been in a recent bad run of form, the 49ers will look to bounce back this week against the Rams.

Ravens at Bills
Sam: Ravens
Jacob: Ravens
Abel: Ravens
Rohan: Ravens

Sam says:
Although the home field advantage will give the Ravens troubles, the return of Ray Rice should allow them to be more potent offensively.
Jacob says:
I was the only one to pick them last week and the Buffalo squad they face is of much lower quality than Houston.
Abel says:
I've underestimated the Ravens during the first three weeks. They havenít exactly been explosive on offense, but, with their stout defense, they won't need to be against a Bills team led by a rookie quarterback.
Rohan says:
After a strong outing against the Texans, the Ravens have turned a few heads. Look for this game to be a close one but the Ravens will come out on top.

Bengals at Browns
Sam: Bengals
Jacob: Bengals
Abel: Bengals
Rohan: Bengals

Sam says:
No Hoyer magic this week. Sorry Browns fans
Jacob says:
Brian Hoyerís magic will certainly run out against Cincyís prolific passing attack.
Abel says:
Both teams played with resilience in their respective games last week, but the Bengals are just too talented for this Browns team.
Rohan says:
After beating a very strong side in Green Bay, the Bengals' defense will continue to impress and they will defeat the Browns.

Bears at Lions
Sam: Bears
Jacob: Lions
Abel: Bears
Rohan: Bears

Sam says:
The Lions are playing well but I love what the Bears are putting together by utilizing their ďBig 3Ē offensively. Expect a monster game from QB Jay Cutler, RB Matt Forte and WR Brandon Marshall.
Jacob says:
The Lionsí triple threat offense combo of QB Matt Stafford, WR Calvin Johnson and RB Reggie Bush should help them put the first blemish on the Bearsí season in front of the Ford Field faithful.
Abel says:
The Bears' defense is a scoring machine, and my guy Jay Cutler is proving to everyone that not only is he a top 12 quarterback but tough as nails as well.
Rohan says:
With a 3-0 record the Bears are looking to stay undefeated against the Lions. The return of Reggie Bush will not be able to prevent this.

Seahawks at Texans
Sam: Texans
Jacob: Seahawks
Abel: Seahawks
Rohan: Seahawks

Sam says:
In an upset pick I love the new RB tandem the Texans are putting together with Arian Foster and Ben Tate. They will control the time of possession to keep the beast, Marshawn Lynch, off the field.
Jacob says:
The Seahawks are looking like one of the leagueís premier teams this year. The suffocating defense should be able to stop Texansí pro bowl running back Arian Foster.
Abel says:
The Seahawks have looked like one of the top two teams in the league, alongside the Broncos, while the Texans have gotten off to a very shaky start.
Rohan says:
With another win the Seahawks could continue to go undefeated against the Texans who got demolished by the Ravens.

Colts at Jaguars
Sam: Colts
Jacob: Colts
Abel: Colts
Rohan: Colts

Sam says:
You couldnít even pay me to pick the Jaguars.
Jacob says:
The Colts are coming off of a big win, and the Jaguars canít win anything.
Abel says:
The Colts were by far the team of the week after dominating the 49ers in their own stadium. Now, they get to boost morale by playing the miserable Jaguars.
Rohan says:
The Jaguars are always poor and they will get no help against the Colts.

Giants at Chiefs
Sam: Chiefs
Jacob: Chiefs
Abel: Chiefs
Rohan: Chiefs

Sam says:
Former Eagles (now Chiefs) coach Andy Reid has shown that he knows the NFC East teams more than they know themselves. But this is the type of game the inconsistent Giants always win, so Iím very unconfident about this pick.
Jacob says:
These are two teams that look as if theyíre heading in opposite directions right now. Iíll take new coach Andy Reid to get another big win at home.
Abel says:
Losing 38-0 to the Panthers? Unbelievable. The Chiefs defense will have their way with a Giants offensive line that gave up 7(!) sacks last Sunday.
Rohan says:
After a strong outing against the Eagles, the Chiefs will continue their winning ways and beat the poor Giants who failed to put a score up on the board last week against Carolina.

Steelers at Vikings
Sam: Steelers
Jacob: Vikings
Abel: Steelers
Rohan: Steelers

Sam says:
Last week I said there is no way the Steelers would go 0-3. Now Iím saying there is no way the Steelers will do 0-4. I still like their run defense against Adrian Peterson.
Jacob says:
Look for Adrian Peterson to help the Vikings control time of possession. Plus the Steelers offense is really old.
Abel says:
The Steelers have got to get a win at some point, right? They showed some offensive ability Sunday night versus the Bears and as long as Christian Ponder is the Vikings starting quarterback, I will never trust them.
Rohan says:
Pittsburgh can produce on offense and their defense is still solid. This will be their week to get their first win against the Vikings. With LeíVeon Bell coming back from injury the Steelers are aiming to get their first win of the season.

Cardinals at Buccaneers
Sam: Cardinals
Jacob: Cardinals
Abel: Cardinals
Rohan: Buccaneers

Sam says:
Rumors are surfacing that the Bucs are benching starting QB Josh Freeman for rookie QB Mike Glennon. Maybe a good decision long term, but not the first week, Glennon will struggle against a good Cardinals defense.
Jacob says:
The Bucs are starting rookie quarterback Mike Glennon and it will take him at least one game to get acclimated to the NFL.
Abel says:
The Bucs are a MESS. And now they'll be starting rookie Mike Glennon at quarterback.
Rohan says:
The Cardinals let me down this past week and this only gives me more fuel to go along with my pick of the Buccaneers. With Josh Freeman benched and rookie quarterback Mike Glennon looking to make an impact I see Tampa Bay winning this one.

Jets at Titans
Sam: Titans
Jacob: Titans
Abel: Titans
Rohan: Titans

Sam says:
Iíve taken the Jets in their two wins, but not this week. The Titans have impressed this year, and have now shown they can come back to win as well. They are shaping up to be a dark-horse playoff contender.
Jacob says:
Give me the Titans at home against an inconsistent Jets offense.
Abel says:
Despite the win and impressive performance by quarterback Geno Smith, the Jets had 20 penalties last Sunday! The Titans continued to demonstrate their toughness and should pull out a win in a close game.
Rohan says:
With Chris Johnson in the form that he is in, it will be hard to beat the Titans. The Jets will not accomplish this feat and will lose.

Eagles at Broncos
Sam: Broncos
Jacob: Broncos
Abel: Broncos
Rohan: Broncos

Sam says:
I want to pick the Eagles for an upset. In a game that will be all offense, the Eagles should be competitive, but Broncos' QB Peyton Manning is just too good.
Jacob says:
The way Peyton Manning is playing itís hard to pick anyone who faces Denver. The Eaglesí D would have to do things it just isnít capable of to win this one.
Abel says:
This is a no-brainer. The Broncos are arguably the best team in the league and Peyton Manning is on fire. He might throw for another 7 touchdowns against a bad Eagles defense.
Rohan says:
The Broncos are looking unstoppable with Peyton Manning. He has racked up a lot of stats and will only continue this trend against the Eagles who do not have a quality defense.

Redskins at Raiders
Sam: Redskins
Jacob: Redskins
Abel: Redskins
Rohan: Redskins

Sam says:
This will be the week the hometown Redskins will get their first win, itís sad it has to be against the lowly Raiders though.
Jacob says:
The Skins will finally get off the snide against a subpar Raiders squad.
Abel says:
The Skins have to win this game right?
Rohan says:
After heeding to the request of NFL guru Kyle Kirwan, I am influenced to believe that the Redskins will pull off the win against the lowly Raiders who showed me to not trust my gut.

Cowboys at Chargers
Sam: Chargers
Jacob: Chargers
Abel: Cowboys
Rohan: Chargers

Sam says:
Iíll take the Chargers in an upset pick, their defense is quietly getting better and QB Philip Rivers is ranked second in the NFL in touchdown passes.
Jacob says:
Phillip Rivers and the offense should be able to put up enough points to get past Dallas.
Abel says:
Believe it or not, the Cowboys are looking very good and are by far the best team in the NFC East. The offense has showed how explosive they can be, especially when they run the ball, and defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin has really improved the defense. The Chargers are simply the Chargers.
Rohan says:
After barely losing last week the Chargers will rebound with a win against the Cowboys at Qualcomm stadium in the sunny Southern California sun.

Patriots at Falcons
Sam: Falcons
Jacob: Falcons
Abel: Falcons
Rohan: Falcons

Sam says:
I never thought Iíd say this with Patriots QB Tom Brady at the helm, but they just donít have enough weapons to stay with the Falcons, and itís not Bradyís fault.
Jacob says:
The heavyweight matchup will come down to the wire. The Patriots' defense hasnít looked too impressive and Matt Ryan doesnít lose at home.
Abel says:
Neither team is very good defensively so it'll come down to the quarterbacks. I'll take Matt Ryan over Tom Brady in this one because of Ryan's superior receiving weapons.
Rohan says:
The only concern I have about this game is whether or not the Falcons need the defense to show up. If the Falcons rack up enough points in the first half then they will inch out the Pats.

Dolphins at Saints
Sam: Saints
Jacob: Saints
Abel: Saints
Rohan: Saints

Sam says:
If the Dolphins win, they will have completely gotten my approval. But I say it every week; the Saints are a dark-horse Super Bowl contender that is flying under the radar. I apologize for getting repetitive.
Jacob says:
I donít know how the Dolphins are undefeated right now but it should all come to an end against Drew Brees and a strong Saints offense.
Abel says:
The 'Fins might be the best team in the division, but I like Drew Brees and the Saints firepower more in this game, which could be the best of the week.
Rohan says:
I have learned from my mistake and will pick the Saints this week against the 3-0 Dolphins who will suffer their first defeat of the season.




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