NFL Tipsheet: Mini previews and recommended bets for Week 4 fixtures

The Planes will fry the Fish
The Planes will fry the Fish

Luca Bercelli delivered nine winners from 13 selections last week. He's looking to hit double figures in Week four...


"The Fins will do well to break double figures at Wembley...It's the Jets all the way here."

Recommended Bet
Back the New York Jets to win @ 1.910/11

New York Jets @ Miami Dolphins Sunday, 14:30

The Planes missed absentees Eric Decker and Chris Ivory acutely last week in their loss v the Eagles. No running game and only one bona fide receiver will always make things difficult. Still, what will soon be acknowledged as the league's number one defence stepped up and limited the Birds to zero points in the second half. When they get Sheldon Richardson back, this defence is going to be even scarier than Martin Keown on acid. The Fins will do well to break double figures at Wembley, and with whisperings that coach Philbin is already under pressure, I think their struggles will continue in Merry Olde London. Jets all the way here.

Recommended Bet
Back the New York Jets to win @ 1.910/11


Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday, 18:00

I liked the improvements made by Tampa in week two, but they went backwards in week three and they face an uphill battle in this one. Battling Cam Newton and the league's second best defence is not a recipe for success when you're finding your way under a rookie QB. Jameis (I'm just happy to be here) Winston has way too much respect for Newton and looks like he'd be embarrassed to beat his idol. The handicap line of -3pts seems generous to me and I'll be hoovering up all I can get.

Recommended Bet
Back the Carolina Panthers -3pts @ 1.910/11


Houston Texans @ Atlanta Falcons Sunday, 18:00

If the Texans don't stop Julio Jones they're in for a long day in Atlanta, as the receiver is red-hot and looking to notch his fourth consecutive 100-yard plus game. It's possible, but the ten-gallon hat mob were finally able to dominate the line of scrimmage v the Bucs last week, and if they can do the same here, and I think they will, this one is going to be a lot closer than the 6.5 handicap line suggests. The JJ Watt, Jadeveon Clowney double-headed monster is gradually emerging from its lair, and believe me, when that thing starts spitting fire it'll be get-behind-the-couch time. Sunday will be a wake up call for Atlanta - and that wake-up call will include strong painkillers and a drawing board to get back to.

Recommended Bet
Back the Houston Texans +6.5pts @ 2.01/1


Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis Colts Sunday, 18:00

This should be called the 'Banged-up Bowl' as both sides are struggling with injuries. Probably aching more than most is Andrew (the answer) Luck, who has been buffeted from pillar to post in three disappointing games for the Colts. The star QB might have a sore arm but he still managed to engineer a win last time out v the Titans. He'll need a tad more O-line protection to double his win tally on Sunday, and if any team can provide a momentum boost, it's the the lagging Jags. I think The Answer will play, but his supporting cast gets thinner by the day so I'll take the Cats +7.5.

Recommended Bet
Back the Jacksonville Jaguars +7.5pts @ 1.910/11


Kansas City Chiefs @ Cincinnati Bengals Sunday, 18:00

Cincinnati has started well but their perfect 3-0 record has not been achieved against the mightiest of opposition. Also, their defence is not the best against the rush, so sprinkle a little Jamaal Charles into the mix and they might have a problem. I'm banking on Carrot Top to stand up and show us what he's made of...(ginger coloured jelly), and put on one of his patented interception masterclasses. The Chiefs are desperate for a win, and with the points, they're worth a shot.

Recommended Bet
Back the Kansas City Chiefs +4.0pts @ 2.01/1


New York Giants @ Buffalo Bills Sunday, 18:00

This should be more fun than a balloon full of laughing gas (so they tell me). Rex Ryan tries to get his defence to contain Odell Beckham JR, and Tom Coughlin tries to find something of Buffalo's to bottle up, not easy, what with LeSean McCoy and Sammy Watkins both struggling to take the field. Watching the OBJ circus show is the best thing in football at the moment, and I'm predicting 150-yards plus for the second-year man. That should be enough for the W, but if you want to give me a six point start, I'll take it.

Recommended Bet
Back the New York Giants +6.0pts @ 2.01/1


Oakland Raiders @ Chicago Bears Sunday, 18:00

Da Bears are in disarray and the fact that the Raiders are 1.75/7 favourites in Chicago's back yard after winning only two games last season says it all. Think Chelsea but without the talent. With mercurial moaning Jay Cutler at quarterback, it's difficult to completely write off the Windy City furballs, but Oakland's all round offence (sixth best in the league in yards gained) looks more than able to make up for its suspect defence (worst in yards allowed!). QB Derek Carr looks the part in his second year and is utilising the weapons at his disposal, including exciting rookie Amari Cooper and third year running back Latavius Murray (248 yards in the bag already). As the Bears cast one eye on the draft and next year, we cast an eye on a banker for our weekly acca.

Recommended Bet
Back the Oakland Raiders to win @ 1.654/6


Philadelphia Eagles @ Washington Redskins Sunday, 18:00

Sam Bradford, overrated, DeMarco Murray, overrated, Chip Kelly, rubbish, Mark Sanchez, appalling. I could go on, but defence aside, the Eagles are not very good, and all the experts who tipped them as an outside shot for the Superbowl have already popped their betting slips into the shredder. The Birds might think they've turned a corner after grinding out a win against the depleted Jets, but I'm convinced that around that corner is a dead-end with Chip's P45 pinned on the wall. This week's match-up v the Redskins might turn out to be a banana skin because nothing about Philadelphia is convincing. Hell, they scored zero points v the Jets in the second half of last week's game. I'm praying to see butt-fumbling Mark Sanchez drag a team other than the Jets into the mire, but so far, Bradford is doing that job for him. Not much to say about Washington other than Kirk Cousins is legit, and with a fit again and angry DeSean Jackson to aim at, they look worth a chance with a three point headstart.

Recommended Bet
Back the Washington Redskins +3.0pts @ 1.9520/21


Cleveland Browns @ San Diego Chargers Sunday, 21:05

"We want Johnny, we want Johnny, we want Johnny." That's what should be ringing around Qualcomm stadium at 9.05pm on Sunday evening. Unfortunately for Browns fans, the powers that be have backed themselves into a corner and don't seem to be listening. By starting J. Football now they will be admitting that they got it wrong in the first place...not gonna happen. I've been banging on about Johnny for ages and I'm still convinced he's the real deal, I thought he proved that in week two. He reminds me of a young Tony Romo but with better wheeels. It's simple - if J Footy plays, the Browns win. If he doesn't chalk one up for the Bolts. Stop press - Johnny Manziel doesn't start for Cleveland.

Recommended Bet
Back the San Diego Chargers to win @ 1.331/3


Green Bay Packers @ San Francisco 49ers Sunday, 21:25

The Pack are the same price to beat the Niners as the Chargers are to beat the Browns! That's staggering: Green Bay are nailed on whereas San Diego only have a decent shout, that's the way I see it. Aaron Rodgers, who this week was compared to Michael Jordan such is his dominance, now faces a defence that has allowed 90 points and nearly 900 yards in its last two games. Cue - carnage and some serious back-to-basics instructions for CK Maxx. At least Niners' fans have something to savour - ex-rugby league star Jarryd Hayne forcing his way onto centre stage after his 37-yard punt return last week. It might not be much, but it's better than nowt.

Recommended Bet
Back the Green Bay Packers to win @ 1.330/100


St Louis Rams @ Arizona Cardinals Sunday, 21:25

Bruce Arians makes me laugh, and I'm laughing with him not at him, despite the ridiculous beret that he insists on wearing 24/7. He addressed the Cards after their 2-0 start with the classic line: 'You Ain't (Bleep)!' That's one way to keep things in perspective, but I'm sorry Bruce, the secret is well and truly out now after a 47-7 win that takes them to 3-0. Yes the Cards are for real, and improving rapidly. Carson Palmer, Chris Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald are all playing out of their skins. The team that I backed for Superbowl glory last year, only to be denied by a plague of injuries, looks set for a solid crack at it if they stay healthy.

Recommended Bet
Back the Arizona Cardinals -6.0pts @ 1.910/11


Minnesota Viking @ Denver Broncos Sunday 21:25

I wish I had Peyton Manning's luck. His arm has dwindled to such an extent that the knuckleball he now throws would be more at home in the MLB rather than the NFL. Fortunately for him it doesn't really matter, since Denver's No 1 D is doing all the heavy lifting. Echoes of Trent Dilfer and the Baltimore Ravens circa 2001 come to mind. Ok, so Manning senior isn't that bad yet, but he's getting close. At the other end of the scale is young Teddy Bridgewater whose rise through the QB ranks has been steady rather than striking. Can he deal with the league's number one defence. It's a tall order but with modest Adrian (I could have played in the NFL at 18) Peterson to help him out, I think he'll give it a decent shot. Take the points but keep it sensible.

Recommended Bet
Back the Minnesota Vikings +6.5pts @ 2.0811/10


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