Expert NFL Betting Picks: Weekly NFC East Predictions Week 4
by Dave Schwab - 9/24/2014
Three weeks and three straight winners is not a bad way to start the season handicapping the NFC East. Last Sunday I rode Dallas to victory in a 3-Unit play, but the Cowboys made me work for it by falling behind 21-0 to St. Louis in their eventual 34-31 victory as 1.5-point road favorites.
Every week of this year's NFL regular season I will briefly preview all the games in the NFC Eastusing BetOnline's betting odds as well as release my NFC East "pick of the week" with the use of Doc's Sports Unit Betting System. I will be tracking my results from week to week as the season progresses with the ultimate goal of generating a profit of at least $1,000 with my picks.
New York Giants at Washington Redskins (Thursday, Sept. 25, 8:25 p.m.)
The NFC East gets to kick off Week 4 with divisional clash on Thursday Night Football. The Giants snapped a two-game skid to start the year with a solid 30-17 victory over Houston last week as slight 1.5-point home favorites. New York played well on both sides of the ball, but the big difference in this game as opposed to earlier losses to Detroit and Arizona was the play of Eli Manning. He completed 21-of-28 attempts for 234 yards and two scores, but more importantly he did not throw an interception after getting picked off four times in his first two outings.
The Redskins may have lost the battle to Philadelphia last week in a 37-34 loss as four-point road underdogs, but they may have found their starting quarterback for the future in Kirk Cousins. Filling in for an injured Robert Griffin III, he smoked the Eagles' secondary for 427 yards and three touchdowns as part of an effort that racked up 511 yards of total offense. Pierre Garcon was also a force in the passing game with 11 receptions for 138 yards and a score.
Washington has been opened as a 3.5-point home favorite over New York, with the total set at 46.
New Orleans Saints at Dallas Cowboys (Sunday, Sept. 28, 8:30 p.m.)
The Saints posted their first win of the season last Sunday after back-to-back road losses to Atlanta and Cleveland as favorites. They squeezed by Minnesota 20-9 and just barely covered the closing 9.5-point spread at home. New Orleans' offense is ranked fourth in the NFL in total yards and seventh in scoring, but its defense is ranked 21st in points allowed and 29th against the pass.
Dallas moved to 2-1 SU and ATS with the come-from-behind win over the Rams, but you still do not know what your are going to get from this team from one week to the next. One of the biggest surprises so far is a running game that is ranked third in the league with an average of 156.7 yards per game. DeMarco Murray has done most of the damage with 385 yards on 75 carries for an average of 5.1 yards per attempt. Dallas is still having issues on defense, but this unit has shown signs of improvement as compared to last season's dismal showing.
The Saints will go back on the road this Sunday night as three-point favorites with the total set at 53.
NFC East 'Pick of the Week'
Philadelphia Eagles at San Francisco 49ers (Sunday, Sept. 28, 4:25 p.m.)
The Eagles set a new NFL record in their first three games by becoming the first team to ever erase three straight double-digit deficits for wins to start the season. Eventually second-year head coach Chip Kelly is going to have to find a way to avoid these slow starts, but he has to be thrilled with the way Philadelphia has been able to finish games. He also going to have to find a way to patch up an offensive line that has been devastated with injury so far.
This could be a crossroads game for San Francisco after a 1-2 SU start (SU and ATS) that already has them in a hole in the NFC West behind 3-0 Arizona. Last Sunday the 49ers lost to the Cardinals 23-14 as three-point favorites on the road. This team has been the polar opposite of Philadelphia so far with three fast starts that have produced 76 first half points. That production has been nonexistent in the second half with a grand total of just three points in three games.
I would not be surprised to see Philly fall behind by a couple of scores again on Sunday afternoon, but this team's closing speed is just too fast to spot it 5.5 points. The Eagles SU winning streak may still come to an end, but I am banking on them taking San Francisco to the wall in this one.
4-Unit Play: Take Philadelphia (+5.5) over San Francisco
YTD: 3-0 (+$900)
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