What We Learned: NFL Week 4

NFL Oct 03, 2021

Shocker!  Cardinals could be the NFL's lone undefeated team.

It's 4th and 20.

Following NFL Week 4, here are twenty takeaways from the NFL's most recent slate of regular season games:

(1)  Have there ever been four better late games than this past Sunday?  Pittsburgh vs. Green Bay.  Seattle vs. San Francisco.  Arizona vs. LA Rams.  Baltimore vs. Denver.  Oh, and Sunday night featured Tampa Bay vs. New England.  The late slate of games made this a really tough choice for those with the dish and access to multiple games.  Thank goodness for the NFL Red Zone.

(2)  Gutsy never-quit awards go to NY Jets, NY Giants, and Chicago Bears – three of the most maligned teams in the NFL.  The Jets and Giants won in overtime despite being touchdown underdogs.  And the Bears, after a horrible game last week, pretty much dominated the hapless Lions.

(3)  Disgraceful stinker awards of the week go to New Orleans (losers at home against the Giants– seriously, WTF?), Tennessee (which took the Jets lightly), and Houston (which was expected to lose at Buffalo, but did so in spectacularly inept fashion).  The New Orleans loss was an exclamation point that this team is now on the decline.  There was NO EXCUSE for such a lame effort, losing a 21-10 lead at home against a (previously) winless team.    

(4)  Tennessee's defense is absolute garbage.  The Titans should be an OVER bet in every game the remainder of the season.  They have no trouble moving the ball (despite both starting WRs being on out Sunday), but then the defense can't stop anybody.

(5)  A special gutsy award goes to the Washington Football Team for pulling out a surprise win at Atlanta.  WFT is now 2-2 on the season and very much in contention.  Ron Rivera always seems to get the most out of mediocre talent.  Look for Washington to keep step with the Cowboys in the NFC East.

(6)  Speaking of the Cowboys, what a strong performance (again) by the Dallas offense and Dak Prescott.  He's having an MVP season.  Credit the Cowboys, who have faced a tough schedule so far in 2021 (Tampa Bay, LA Chargers, Carolina, and Philadelphia).  This team might finally be for real as a serious threat in the NFC.

(7)  The Broncos are who we thought they were – a fraud.  Despite being 3-1, this is a last-place team in a tough division.  The Raiders, Chiefs, and Chargers are all better than the Broncos, which I expect to fold as the season progresses.

(8)  Buffalo looks like a beast.  But let's not forget they haven't played anyone since the season opener.  Beating Miami (with the backup QB), Washington, and awful Houston doesn't impress me.  Let's see how the Bills do next wee at Kansas City.  Next week will tell us much about the pecking order in the AFC.

(9)  I still can't get over the topsy-turvy performance of the Bears from week-to-week.  They look horrid half the time, then win and cover easily when least expected.  It appears the Bears are a fade team (0-2) on the road and a bet on team (2-0) at home.  We'll see.

(10)  Week 4 in the NFL was the day for OVERs.  All but one of the early games busted the total.  It also looks like 3/4 late games will go OVER based on what we're seeing at the time of this posted article (on Sunday afternoon).

(11)  What's going on with Miami?  Did anyone seem them to go 1-3 to start the season?  Most disappointing has been the Dolphins defense which looks to have regressed since last season.  Miami is now in "must win" mode, or else their playoff chances will be dead by midseason.

(12)  Did anyone see the Cleveland-Minnesota game to land on just 21 points? Both defenses rose to the occasion.  While the Browns are very much for real, the Vikings suffered yet another crushing defeat.  Now 1-3, the Vikings are snakebit at the team that could be 4-0 with a few breaks, but somehow have flopped in crunch time.

(13)  We brought up the Jets and Giants previously.  Did their wins today mean they have turned a corner?  It's quite possible.  Give more credit to the Giants for the stunning win at New Orleans on Sunday.  Now, they face their biggest test at Dallas next week.  The Jets have a really good chance to go to 2-3 and jump back to respectability.  They play at Atlanta, which is certainly a winnable game.

(14)  The Cincinnati Bengals are 3-1 and tied for first place.  And in other news--the world may be coming to an end.  Huge game next week for Bengals, who host Green Bay at home.

(15)  Underdogs went 8-6 (so far).  Two games (SNF and MNF) are still to be played.  Of those eight covers, the dogs won the game outright in seven of them.

(16)  Early prediction on NFL MVP – Kyler Murray?  Looking good at the moment.

(17)  Pittsburgh's offensive line is jaw-droppingly awful.  This unit is the NFL's worst (and yes, I even include the Houston Texans front five, which is much better than the Steelers).  Watching this OL try to run block and pass block is the Keystone Cops of football.  They stink.

(18)  Early prediction on NFL Coach of the Year – Matt Rhule (Carolina Panthers). Carolina should get a win next week hosting Philadelphia.  That means they'll be 4-1 heading into a tougher stretch of games versus division opponents.  Honorable Mention goes to Kliff Kingsbury (Arizona Cardinals).

(19)  Unless the Las Vegas Raiders pull off an upset on MNF, that means the Arizona Cardinals will be the only unbeaten team after four weeks.  What an impressive showing from the Cardinals, so far.

(20)  Monday Night Football up next with the AFC West division lead on the line. LA Chargers, playing their biggest home game in many years, is favoured.  Should be a fun game to watch.

Finally, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers win again.  Note to CFL fans:  Lock it up – Winnipeg Blue Bombers, 2021 Grey Cup Champions!  


  1. Arizona
  2. Buffalo
  3. Cleveland
  4. Tampa Bay
  5. Dallas
  6. Winnipeg Blue Bombers (just for fun)