2021 NFL Week 4 Tips & Preview

Five teams remain undefeated and five teams remain winless as we look ahead to another unpredictable slate of NFL action.

Nobody expected the Panthers, Broncos, and Raiders to be 3-0 heading into Week 4, while other teams like the Colts and Giants now face the thought of potentially starting the season 0-4.

It will be hard to top last week’s highlight reel, but key games include the Chiefs taking on the Eagles in the early window, followed by a massive NFC West double-header when the Seahawks battle the Niners, and the Cardinals take on the Rams.

Of course, Monday is all about the highly anticipated return of Tom Brady to New England as the Bucs hope to bounce back from last week’s loss to the Rams on Sunday Night Football.

Week 4 really has a playoff-like feel to it, and you can find our best bets for all 16 games right here!

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Cincinnati Bengals
Tip: Back the Jaguars to Cover the Line (+7.5 Points) @ $1.90

The 0-3 Jags visit the 2-1 Bengals on Friday in a game that features two of the NFL’s most promising young quarterbacks, Joe Burrow and Trevor Lawrence.

The former has picked up right where he left off prior to last year’s season-ending injury, while Lawrence’s rookie year has gotten off to a rough start after throwing five interceptions through three games.

This isn’t the most exciting game on paper, but I do think there’s value to be had on the Jags here after they gave Arizona a run for their money last week.

Taking care of the football has been a real problem for Urban Meyer’s side, but I thought James Robinson ran the ball extremely well against a talented Cardinals defensive line.

The Bengals stopped Najee Harris in his track last week, but I’m not willing to buy into Cincinnati’s defence being good just yet.

With the Packers ahead next week, I wouldn’t discount the Bengals overlooking this game, either.

Tennessee Titans @ New York Jets
Tip: Over 44 Total Points @ $1.90

The Titans head to the Meadowlands as -7 favourites against an injury-ravaged Jets team on Monday.

As if an 0-3 start wasn’t bad enough, the Jets now have tight end Tyler Kroft and receiver Elijah Moore on the injury report, limiting the options even further for turnover-prone rookie quarterback, Zach Wilson.

The Titans, meanwhile, come into this game at 2-1, but they too have some injury concerns with A.J. Brown ruled out with a hamstring injury.

Those kinds of injuries on both sides would suggest we’re in for a low-scoring game, but I’m thinking the opposite here given how awful these two teams have looked defensively.

The Titans have allowed an average of 28 points to opponents, while the Jets were just shutout by the Broncos a week ago. ‘

Tennessee’s defence isn’t strong enough for a -7 head start, so I think the Total is a much safer play.

Kansas City Chiefs @ Philadelphia Eagles
Tip: Back the Eagles to Cover the Line (+7.5 Points) @ $1.90

No, you’re not reading that wrong, the Chiefs are currently dead last in the AFC West.

Questions have been asked of Andy Reid’s side following back-to-back losses to the Ravens and Chargers, but the good news is they’ve drawn a very favourable matchup against the Eagles this week.

For whatever reason, the Eagles completely abandoned their running game in the 41-21 loss to the Cowboys last Tuesday, but it’s fair to say we’ll see plenty of Jalen Hurts running the ball this week.

The Chiefs were torched by Lamar Jackson on the ground two weeks ago, and have so far allowed the second-most rushing yards in the league.

Not to be outdone, Kansas City’s secondary has struggled to contain teams through the air, which does leave Philly looking like a decent value bet to at least keep this game close.

The Chiefs have been a very profitable bounce-back bet over the last few years, but with Patrick Mahomes throwing two picks last week and the defence looking downright awful, I think the +7.5 about the Eagles at home is generous.

Carolina Panthers @ Dallas Cowboys
Tip: Back the Cowboys to Cover the Line (-5 Points) @ $1.90

The Panthers have opened the season 3-0 for the first time since their Super Bowl run in 2015, but it’s no surprise to find them as the underdog on the road against Dallas this week.

The legitimacy of Carolina’s unbeaten start is still under the microscope following wins over the Jets, Saints and Texans, while the Cowboys, on the other hand, suddenly look like a legitimate playoff contender following last week’s blowout over the Eagles.

Speaking of contenders, Dak Prescott is firmly in the MVP conversation after hurling three touchdowns last week, which complimented a handy 95-yard, two touchdown game from Ezekiel Elliott.

The Panthers have what it takes defensively to limit Dallas’ high-powered attack, but on the other end, I have my doubts as to whether Sam Darnold can challenge a very underrated Cowboys defence on the road.

Taking nothing away from Darnold, he’s been very good in three starts so far, but this is a significant step up in class with Christian McCaffrey’s status still uncertain.

New York Giants @ New Orleans Saints
Tip: Back the Saints 14+ @ $2.80

The Saints finally return to the Superdome this week for what looks to be a very winnable game against the hapless Giants.

Defensively, Big Blue was in for the fight last week against Atlanta, but the offence sputtered its way to only 14 points in another disappointing performance from Daniel Jones.

New York’s inability to play four quarters of football is a serious worry, even more so against a Saints team that has put up some big totals against the Packers and Patriots this season.

Combine that with a partisan Saints crowd that has been waiting 18 months to fill the Superdome, and you have the recipe for a potential blowout.

Cleveland Browns @ Minnesota Vikings
Tip: Vikings Under 25.5 Total Points @ $1.85

This is a very important game between two sides that could be fighting for a Wild Card spot in their respective conferences this year.

The Browns are coming off a convincing 20-point win over the Bears last week, while the Vikings made full use of home-field advantage to pick up their first win of the season over the Seahawks.

Playing at home again makes this an interesting spot for Minnesota, but there’s again some doubt surrounding star running back Dalvin Cook and his injured ankle.

Minnesota had some success running the ball without him last week, but they’d probably like to have Cook on the field given the Browns have allowed the fifth-fewest rushing yards to opponents so far.

Mike Zimmer should feel confident in his passing game, but moving the ball against the Browns through the air has been almost as difficult.

As the line suggests, I think the Vikings can play the Browns close, but I ultimately expect Cleveland’s defence to have the final say here.

Detroit Lions @ Chicago Bears
Tip: Back the Lions to Cover the Line (+2.5) & Over 42.5 Total Points @ $3.50

This mightn’t be the most exciting game on paper, but the stage is set for a potential thriller based on what we saw from the Lions and Bears last week.

Detroit was super unlucky to lose on Justin Tucker’s record-breaking field goal, while the Bears will be hoping for a much better day on offence after Justin Fields threw for less than 70-yards in his debut.

Matt Nagy hasn’t confirmed whether Fields or Nick Foles will be starting under centre this week, which has left the Bears as slim -2.5 favourites at home.

It’s hard to say which one of those two options is the better one, but from a betting perspective, it does make the Lions a very intriguing play as the road dog.

Detroit won’t win many games this year, but they’ve had some convincing stretches against two legitimate Super Bowl contenders in Green Bay and Baltimore over the last fortnight.

Jared Goff needs to take care of the football against Chicago’s fierce pass rush, but when you consider the Lions won at Soldier Field last year, there’s a good chance they keep this close.

Houston Texans @ Buffalo Bills
Tip: Back the Bills to Cover the Line (-16 Points) @ $1.90

A road trip to Buffalo is hardly what the Texans need right now.

To be fair, Houston put in a real fight in the first half against the Panthers last week, but ultimately fell by 15 points as the game got out of hand in the fourth quarter.

The Bills, meanwhile, exploded with a huge 43-21 win over Washington last week, largely thanks to a monster day from Josh Allen.

Last year’s MVP runner-up finished with 358 yards and four touchdowns to his name, silencing some of the doubters after the Bills struggled in Week 1 against Pittsburgh.

With all that in mind, it’s no surprise to find the Bills laying -16 against the spread this week.

Buffalo made life almost impossible for quarterback Taylor Heinicke last week, registering a sack, two hits and two picks in just his third career start.

The same kind of treatment looks to be in store for rookie Davis Mills this week, and given the tough environment that is Highmark Stadium, it’s hard to argue with the spread.

Indianapolis Colts @ Miami Dolphins
Tip: Back the Dolphins to Cover the Line (-1.5 Points) @ $1.83

It’s just about D-Day for the 0-3 Colts this week.

Indianapolis put in a really strong performance last week against the rival Titans, but another underwhelming game from quarterback Carson Wentz saw the Colts come up nine points short.

Facing what could only be described as an irreversible 0-4 hole, the Colts simply must win if they hold any hope of claiming a Wild Card spot in the AFC.

By the same token, this is also a pivotal game for the 1-2 Dolphins on the back of last week’s crushing overtime loss to the Raiders.

Tua Tagovailoa looks unlikely to return before Week 6, and while Jacoby Brissett came up with some clutch throws in the late stages against Vegas, it’s hard to ignore the fact he hasn’t thrown a touchdown pass in 89 attempts this year.

When you put these two teams side by side though, it’s hard not to feel better about Miami.

The defence came up with some big stops early against the Raiders last week, while they’ve also allowed the ninth-fewest points allowed.

Offensively, there’s still a lot to be desired, but with a strong 11-1 record against the spread after allowing 30 points or more the previous week, I feel good about the Dolphins here.

Washington Football Team @ Atlanta Falcons
Tip: Under 47.5 Total Points @ $1.90

The market paints a pretty clear picture as far as this game goes.

The Falcons picked up their first win of the season last week in less-than-convincing fashion against the Giants, while Washington’s lone win on the year feels like a distant memory following a blowout loss to the Bills.

Not surprisingly, we’re faced with almost even money on offer head-to-head, but I’m happy to sit on the fence here and play the Under.

If you ignore last week’s result, Washington has been one of the better defensive teams over the last two seasons, particularly on the road where they’ve seen the Under result in each of their last four games.

Atlanta, meanwhile, turned in a good defensive effort of their own against the Giants last week to hold Daniel Jones to just 266 yards and zero touchdowns.

This Washington offence isn’t any tougher, so I think the Under is the best bet.

Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers
Tip: Over 52 Total Points @ $1.90

The NFC West really comes into focus this week with all four teams squaring off.

Seattle and San Francisco are both looking to bounce-back from a pair of losses to NFC North opponents in Week 3, but that’s probably about as simple as this game gets.

The Seahawks have always been a solid bounce-back bet – evident in the fact they’ve covered in four of their last six games following a loss – but their defence has been atrocious over the last two weeks allowing 30 points or more.

Likewise, the Niners were torched by Aaron Rodgers and the Packers last week, often in quite embarrassing ways.

Kyle Shanahan’s defence looked dazed and confused on the final drive that set up Green Bay’s game-winning field goal, while Jimmy Garoppolo, and Shanahan’s clock management, all came into question.

You can’t discount either offence rebounding and putting up a big score, but it’s hard to feel confident in either team right now.

This game is all about which defence chooses to turn up on the day, and based on what we’ve seen so far, it’s assuming a lot to say either team’s will.

Arizona Cardinals @ Los Angeles Rams
Tip: Back the Rams to Cover the Line (-4.5 Points) @ $1.90

We keep our attention on the NFC West as the undefeated Cardinals and Rams meet in Los Angeles this week.

Arizona has exploded from the gates with wins over Tennessee, Minnesota, and Jacksonville, but obviously, this is a much tougher task against a Rams team that can seemingly do no wrong offensively.

Matt Stafford has been a joy to watch under centre so far in LA, but you might be surprised to learn the Rams defence hasn’t been quite up to scratch.

Los Angeles ranks eighth in passing yards allowed so far, which does set up an interesting matchup against Kliff Kingsbury and his high-flying offence.

Of course, the Rams pass rush is still an elite unit, while on a more important note, LA also holds Arizona’s number with nine wins from their last 10 meetings.

I think Sean McVay’s offence still has a few wrinkles left to unveil, and while Kyler Murray and the Cardinals might keep this close early, I expect the Rams to sneak in for a backdoor cover with home-field advantage.

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Green Bay Packers
Tip: Back the Packers to Cover the Line (-6.5 Points) @ $1.90

The Packers have been in the headlines for the better part of six months, but they were finally on the right side of them last week after Aaron Rodgers led an incredible last-minute drive to beat the 49ers on a walk-off field goal.

Green Bay now heads back to Lambeau Field with momentum on their side as they prepare for a Steelers team that has created plenty of news stories themselves.

Now 1-2, the future of Ben Roethlisberger under centre looks uncertain following last week’s defeat against the Bengals, and things aren’t about to get any easier against a Packers defence that has improved significantly over the last fortnight.

To make matters worse, the Steelers are nursing a long list of injuries that includes T.J. Watt and wide receiver Diontae Johnson.

Mike Tomlin is the kind of coach that used to be able to pull a rabbit out of his hat, but he’s already admitted that he won’t be changing the game plan anytime soon.

With limited pieces to work with, the Packers look a safe bet to add to their unbeaten streak at home.

Baltimore Ravens @ Denver Broncos
Tip: Ravens Under 21.5 Total Points @ $1.91

The Denver Broncos are one of the surprise 3-0 teams to start the season, but their record feels a little hollow when you consider two of those victories have come against the winless Jets and Jaguars.

To be fair, Teddy Bridgewater has done what’s been asked of him so far, while the defence has also reverted to the unit we once knew, leading the league in fewest points allowed.

The Broncos will likely need all of that and more to down the Ravens, but I don’t think they’re completely out of this contest.

Baltimore has done well to keep its head above water given their injury/COVID crisis, but it’s hard to ignore the fact they needed a very, very long field goal to down a winless Lions team last week.

Before that, the Ravens also allowed over 30 points to the Raiders and Chiefs, which doesn’t read particularly well as they look to win their first game at Mile High since 2013.

The Ravens no doubt have the edge on offence, but considering the Denver defence has allowed the second-fewest rushing yards in the league, I don’t think Lamar Jackson is going to have everything his own way.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New England Patriots
Tip: Back the Bucs to Cover the Line (-7 Points) @ $1.94

Tom Brady returns to his old stomping grounds on Sunday Night Football for a battle against his former side, and his former coach.

There’s no shortage of storylines in what is arguably the most anticipated game of the year, but as far as betting is concerned, the only one worth focusing on is the fact the Bucs lost last week.

Tampa Bay was handed a humbling 10-point loss against the Rams, but if you’ve paid attention to Brady over the last 20 years, you’ll know he almost always bounces back.

The crowd and the emotion of this game will play a part, but so too will New England’s questionable defence.

The Patriots have had real trouble stopping the run this year, which doesn’t bode well if the Bucs choose to take the spotlight off Brady and instead trust their running back committee.

Brady has likely been preparing for this game since the schedule was announced, so with the stage set for a big bounce-back win, you have to trust the Bucs offence to get the job done.

Las Vegas Raiders @ Los Angeles Chargers
Tip: Over 51.5 Total Points @ $1.90

Fresh from a season-defining win over the Chiefs last week, the Chargers head into Tuesday’s game as -3 favourites with plenty of momentum on their side.

The Raiders, on the other hand, required overtime in their come-from-behind victory over the Dolphins, leaving a few question marks surrounding Jon Gruden’s side despite their 3-0 mark.

Derek Carr is enjoying an MVP-like start to the season, while Justin Herbert has also looked impressive in his second year throwing for 956 yards and six touchdowns so far.

Both sides have really struggled to defend the pass at times this season, which does lend itself to a potential shootout on Monday Night Football.

Both meetings between the Raiders and Chargers resulted in over 52 points last year, so I feel pretty good about this one being high scoring.