First off, let me just say, you’re welcome.
Last week, to celebrate the official beginning of the fall season, I donned my Ugg boots, slid into my All Worthy Hunter McGrady suede coat with the faux fur, placed an order for a pumpkin spice no-fat decaf latte with oat milk and delivered to you a perfect four-team parlay that hit.
Like the first leaves to fall and be joyously crushed beneath our feet before they become deadly road hazards after the first rain storm, this must be celebrated.
But we’re not finished. We’ve got NFL Week 4 odds at MaximBet, and we’re going to do what we’ve done all season: picking winners and making money before giving our kids motion sickness on a rickety hay ride.
Lock of the Week
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-7) at New England Patriots
Our locks are going to get tougher to come by as the season rolls on and divisional play begins, but luckily enough the betting gods have tossed one right into our laps.
Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. will make his return to Foxboro Sunday night, his first chance to face off against his old team, the New England Patriots, and former head coach, Bill Belichick.
And, at the time I’m writing this, the Bucs are laying just 7 points at MaximBet. That’s it. A single touchdown and an extra point for a Brady-led team, still loaded, but coming off a solid ass kicking at the boots of the Los Angeles Rams.
It was a contest for early conference supremacy between two teams that have every reason to expect to meet again in the NFC Championship. And the Tampa Bay defense decided to clock out early and take the second half off.
Tom Brady didn’t. Tom Brady spent the second half making these faces. These are the Tom Brady expressions that Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan sees in his nightmares.
The Rams were better than the Bucs as a team Sunday, but Brady went down swinging. It was the first time in his life he threw for over 400 yards and lost. The man has played in the NFL for 22 years and it had never happened before.
Now, you’re telling me he has a chance to harness that anger, that hurt, that desire for vengeance and use it against the former coach and team that all but ran him out of town a year and a half ago?
A team fielding a rookie first round QB? The same team that made him wait until the sixth round to get drafted in 2000, something that still bothered him enough to weep openly about it on ESPN more than a decade later even after winning three Super Bowls and playing in five?
Did you know that Brady is 18-2 lifetime against rookie first round quarterbacks? Or that he’s riding a 13-game win streak over first-round rookie QBs? Now you do.
And let’s not forget Tampa defensive coordinator Todd Bowles is still the guy that shut down the Kansas City Chiefs in last year’s Super Bowl. There’s quite a bit of drop off from facing a Matthew Stafford/Sean McVay offense and whatever toddler bicycle with training wheels, basket and clown horn Josh McDaniels is calling for Mac Jones.
Take the Bucs -7 and do it quick because this line may jump.
Worst Games of NFL Week 4
Detroit Lions at Chicago Bears (-2.5)
Indianapolis Colts at Miami Dolphins (-1.5)
At this point the Detroit Lions are such regulars here in the Worst Games of the Week section that we all just yell out their name like Norm from Cheers when clicking the article link. If they keep this streak up, they deserve some kind of award. Maybe a trophy that looks like a golden toilet with a broken seat.
The Lions actually invented a new way to lose last week against the Ravens, giving up a 19-yard passing first down on fourth down to a running quarterback before surrendering an NFL record 66-yard field goal.
The Bears would have loved to have hit 66 yards in anything in their loss to the Cleveland Browns, because in Justin Field’s first NFL start, the team totaled 47 yards of offense for the game. They converted just six first downs, but still scored six points and for the life of me, I can’t make the math work in my head to figure out how they did it.
Now, head coach Matt Nagy is saying that he could start Fields again, Andy Dalton or Nick Foles? Is that a threat? Is Nagy intentionally trying to keep us from watching the game? There’s only so many different ways for NFL RedZone’s Scott Hanson to apologize for featuring this shitshow when every other contest is at halftime or commercial.
As for the Colts? Carson Wentz is still hurt, because that’s his thing. His hobby. Some guys like to carve duck decoys or tie fishing flies. Others like to learn a musical instrument or putter around in the garage on an old muscle car. Wentz likes to get his ankles and knees x-rayed.
Wentz shouldn’t be playing, but he is. And he’s facing a Dolphins team QBed by its backup, Jacoby Brissett, because starter Tua Tagovailoa, since his senior year at Alabama, is developing the same pastime as Wentz.
Take the Bears at -2.5 and/or the Dolphins at -1.5.
A Shocking Upset of the San Francisco 49ers?
Seattle is in trouble. They’ve dropped two games and are currently sitting in last place in the NFL’s best division. The 49ers are trying to regain their place in the NFC conversation and keep pace with the Rams after losing on a gut-wrenching 37-second scoring drive to Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers last Sunday.
It was close, a 30-28 loss, but Jimmy Garoppolo, on a team that’s already selected his replacement in April’s draft, stood toe-to-toe with Rodgers and nearly won.
Against Seattle, it won’t matter. Russell Wilson owns the 49ers like they’re one of Future’s kids.
Since Wilson entered the NFL in 2012, he is 15-4 against San Francisco, regardless of who the 49ers are fielding at quarterback or head coach.
During their Super Bowl run in 2019, the 49ers lost just three regular season games. One of them was to the Seahawks. Wilson is 6-2 against San Fran since they hired Kyle Shanahan.
Take the Seahawks at +2.5 or take the moneyline at +129.
Drop $10 on a Four-Team Parlay
I may not live to see our glory, but I will gladly join the fight. And when your children tell our story, they’ll tell the story of tonight when we collect on this four-team parlay.
As usual, we begin with the upset we’ve already selected, the Seahawks (+129 on the moneyline at MaximBet). And just like last week, we’ve got some “upsets” that are looking pretty good, namely the Las Vegas Raiders (+155) over the Los Angeles Chargers and the Atlanta Falcons (+105) over the Washington Football Team.
Neither of those outcomes seems a stretch. Derek Carr is currently the deadliest man in America and he’s facing a Chargers team that might have read too much of its own press today.
While SoFi Stadium was rocking with Rams fans last week, I’m guessing there will be a sizable Raiders contingent come Sunday, significantly outnumbering the lone Chargers fan in attendance.
The Falcons are home dogs to a team fielding a quarterback making his fifth NFL start (Taylor Heinicke). WFT’s defense is giving up 30 points a game.
But the pick that puts us over the top is the Minnesota Vikings (+115) knocking off the Cleveland Browns at home. The Skol crowd is formidable and Kirk Cousins is coming off one of the best games of his life (30 of 38 for 323 yards and three touchdowns). Meanwhile the Browns haven’t had to break a sweat since Week 1.
Yeah, it’s a tough one, but that’s what makes it fun. And all you’re risking is the price of one of those no-fat decaf oat milk pumpkin spice lattes that you’re going to pick up before hitting the corn maze.
A $10 four-team parlay bet win on these moneylines pays $247.
Adam Greene is @TheFirstMan on Twitter.
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