WEEK 4 NFL TOP 10
by WAYNE ALLYN ROOT
With a quarter of the season behind us there are only 2 teams that remain undefeated; Cincinnati and Arizona. It’s amazing that 3 teams usually at the top are just 2-2 with New England, San Francisco and Green Bay. The State of Texas is off to an awesome start as both Dallas and Houston are 3-1. The West Coast is well represented as Seattle, San Diego and Denver all have just one loss. So as this week progresses, many things, thought and theories will emerge as Week 5 is ready to reveal more about this year’s postseason contenders.
1) SEATTLE—Let’s all assume that the Seahawks enjoyed their bye week after pulling out an OT win against Denver. Now it’s off the DC in a Monday Night contest where they stand as 8 point chalk. Kirk Cousins better be more accurate than last week (4 INT’s) against a very talented Seattle secondary.
2) CINCINNATI—The Bengels had a great bye week and sit at 3-0. This week everyone is confused as they play at New England and it’s the Cincinnati talent vs the Patriots off an embarrassing national TV loss. Pat fans are panicking. We’ll see what Brady & Co. is made of after this game is over.
3) DENVER—The Broncos must have been in pain following their “comeback loss” 2 weeks ago at Seattle. Hopefully, Peyton Manning is the type of leader that can re-group his troops. This week it’s against a very good defensive team as the Cardinals come to Mile High. Manning will have to have his game plan together as Arizona remains undefeated.
4) ARIZONA—Maybe the Cardinals are still feeling burned from not making the playoffs last year and that’s the fuel they need to keep their fire lit. They had their bye week and with 2 weeks to prepare for the Broncos, just maybe they have a shocker in store for Denver. The Vegas oddsmakers are offering 7.5 points for anyone that dares to go up against Peyton Manning.
5) SAN DIEGO—This Charger team is the real deal. A one-point loss at Arizona in the season opener is the only thing keeping San Diego from 4-0. Philip Rivers’ 114.5 QBR is the best in the NFL. San Diego laid almost 2 TD’s to the Jags and then went out and won and covered. This week they are at home sweet San Diego playing the J-E-T-S. Now we get to see how they play as 7 point favorites.
6) BALTIMORE—The Ravens disposed of Carolina last Sunday as Steve Smith showed what a taste of payback is like to his former team. Smith has as many multi-TD games with Joe Flacco as he had in three years with Newton. This week he’ll be the centerpiece of the game plan again as the Ravens must compete blow for blow with Andrew Luck and his Colts.
7) PHILADELPHIA—The Eagles continue to set infamous records. Here’s another one to add to this years list: Foles was 0 of 10 with 2 interceptions on passes more than 20 yards downfield. They are also only the 2nd team in NFL history to lose a game with 3 defensive or special teams touchdowns. But the Eagles are 3-1 and last week versus San Francisco, they ended the game on the 1 yard line. This week they host the St Louis Rams as a 7 point fav.
8) DETRIOT—It’s still defense and discipline for the Lions. Some are still waiting for the shoe to drop and “the shooting themselves in the foot” to begin. They defeated the Jets on the road last week and get to host the Buffalo Bill this week. They need a healthy Calvin Johnson to continue to add wins to their record. Playing hurt last week, he finished with 12 receiving yards.
9) DALLAS—The Cowboys put a great game together on both sides of the ball and dismantled the Saints. DeMarco Murray is “the Man!” He freezes the defensive line for that extra second allowing Romo to get set for a pass. Bruce Carter and Barry Church were sensational on D. The ‘Boys better not let it go to their head as they are everyones team to bet after that game and they play in-state rival Houston.
10) SAN FRANCISCO—The 49ers had 14 rushes for 148 yards outside the tackles Sunday, the most rushing yards a team has had outside the tackles since the start of last season. That got them back on track at 2-2. Now it’s time to put the coaching issues behind and build on that win. They’ll have a chance this week as Alex Smith and the Chiefs return so it will be interesting to see if payback is still alive. The 49ers have an QB issue of their own to work on. They need to just focus on their game and leave the hard-ass Harbaugh alone.