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NFL Pro Football 2011 Preseason Week 4 Picks

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Pro Football Preseason Week 4 Picks - late games


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Fearless Rick's NFL Preseason Week 4 Picks - Early Games

Rick Gagliano | September 1-2

All times Eastern - Click here for late games.

Thursday, September 1

6:30 pm Detroit Lions (-1 1/2, 39) at Buffalo Bills - One would expect the Lions to be favored here, coming off their 34-10 stomping of the Patriots, but Buffalo finally got their offense into gear when whipping Jacksonville, 34-31, for their first preseason win.

Of course, the regulars for both teams may not get any playing time at all, as is the NFL tradition, and the Bills probably have more players fighting for spots as backups, thus the short line for Detroit. Overall, however, there's probably more talent in the Lions' reserves than there is for the Bills, so look for Detroit to complete the preseason unblemished.

Prediction: Lions 27 Bills 20

7:00 pm Indianapolis Colts at Cincinnati Bengals (-4, 35 1/2) - The Colts have been using reserves at QB all preseason, while Peyton manning recovers from surgery, so there's reason to believe that Indy may have an edge here. The Colts haven't wo a preseason game, but the Bengals have just last week's 24-13 home win over the Panthers to show in the W column, and that's not saying much.

Indy's defense seems to be rising to the occasion, realizing that their star QB may not be ready for the season opener in a week's time, so adjust the thinking that defense will have a say in the outcome here and the result is clear.

Prediction: Colts 17 Bengals 10

7:30 pm Baltimore Ravens at Atlanta Falcons (-3, 38) - The Ravens gutted out a 34-31 win over the Redskins last week, improving to 2-1, and Tyrod Taylor, who will see most, if not all, of the action at QB, went 11-18 for 125 yards and a TD.

Atlanta was smothered in Pittsburgh, 34-16, and remain winless during the preseason. Backup QB Chris Redman was only 8-18 for 89 yards and a pick against the Steelers, so there's little reason to believe he'll fare much better against another solid defensive unit.

Prediction: Ravens 21 Falcons 14

7:30 pm Dallas Cowboys at Miami Dolphins (-3 1/2, 36 1/2) - Both of these teams have plenty of work to do in order to be ready for the season opener, but the question mark here is which Cowboy quarterback - Jon Kitna, Tom Brandstater or Stephen McGee will show enough to earn the backup role behind Tony Romo. None has shown much promise, but Kitna has the experience edge and should retain the #2 job.

Matt Moore will handle snaps for the Dolphins and guide the offense in a reasonable manner. While this could be one of the duller contests of the week, both teams are 2-1 preseason and seek the playoffs in tough divisions, so there's plenty to watch for here.

Prediction: Dolphins 23 Cowboys 17

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7:30 pm St. Louis Rams at Jacksonville Jaguars (-3, 37) - Jacksonville is 1-2 and lost to the Bills on the road last week, 34-31. Their defense has allowed 95 points over the first three preseason games, the most of any team.

On the other side of the ball, the Rams are 3-0, and have only allowed 36 points in those wins, the best showing in the NFC and third-best defense in the league (Titans allowed 33 points, Jets, 30).

Just on pure speculation that the St. Louis defensive backups are better than Jacksonville offensive second stringers, the Rams should go to 4-0 on the preseason.

Prediction: Rams 23 Jaguars 13

7:30 pm Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Washington Redskins (-7, 35 1/2) - The inflated line here is courtesy of Mike Shanahan and his indecision on whether Rex Grossman or John Beck becomes the starting QB for the regular season. Both have played well and both will see significant time in this game, while the Bucs liely start Josh Johnson, who hasn't been bad either.

With the Redskins flinging the ball all over the place, there's the possibility that this could turn into a rout for Washington, so the prudent notion would be to lay the points and watch the Redskins' QB battle unfold.

Prediction: Redskins 34 Buccaneers 21

7:30 pm NY Giants at New England Patriots (-7 1/2, 40) - Were this a regular season game, the line would probably be closer to -4 than the bloated TD+ presented. New england suffered their first loss of the preseason in a humbling, 34-10, defeat at Detroit.

What came out of that game is that either Detroit's pass rush is really good or the New England offensive line has some serious holes. Whatever the case, it can't be good for the Pats, because the Giants have plenty of players looking to secure backup roles and there's no better way of doing that than to record a coule of tackles in the opponent's backfield.

Brian Hoyer and rookie Ryan Mallett will take snaps for the Patriots and coach Belichick may allow Mallett to air it out with frequency. The Giants scored just a field goal in their 17-3 loss to the Jets and come into this game with only three days rest, thus the fat line. Besides, David Carr was unconvincing at QB and he'll see most of the action.

Prediction: Patriots 24 Giants 14

7:30 pm Philadelphia Eagles (-3, 36) at NY Jets - You're going to see plenty of Vince Young for the Eagles and Greg McElroy will get a good look at QB for the Jets, and since Young has plenty of experience the Eagles look like they'll end up with a 3-1 preseason record while the Jets fall to 2-2.

Both teams appear quite ready for the regular season to start, so maybe Jets' coach Rex Ryan won't be as emotional and engaged on the sideline as he usually is, though he does still have a burning desire to win at anything. Also, some of the Jets' subs may feel a bit disrespected as home underdogs, but let's not jump to any preconceived conclusions and just say the Jets win on moxie and field goals.

Prediction: Jets 16 Eagles 14

All times Eastern - Click here for late games

Copyright 2011, 2012, Rick Gagliano, Downtown Magazine. All rights reserved. Downtown Magazine is located in the Uinted States of America and is not affiliated with the National Football League or the NCAA. For more information, contact us here. Use of this site is for entertainment purposes only.


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