Week Four begins a seven week stretch of byes for four to six teams each week. The teams on bye for Week Four are the New Orleans Saints, Tennessee Titans, Washington Redskins and Jacksonville Jaguars. None of the four have fantasy studs through the first three weeks. That does not mean there weren't players expected to be good. It just means those who were haven't, and their fantasy owners will not miss them.
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants (+3):
After Weeks One and Two, the Giants looked like a 5 win team, at best. In Week Three, the New York football Giants went to Washington and won. Three-point home underdogs to a division rival leads me to believe that the bad Giants are going to re-appear. What will be interesting to see is how much of last week's 56-point effort is repeated by the Eagles.
New York Jets at Buffalo Bills (+3.5):
This is an interesting game as the Jets do not appear to have a good enough defense to merit being road favorites. If a previously comatose Ronnie Brown goes for 200+ combined yards with three TDs, how well will a non-comatose Marshawn Lynch do? Without a pass rush, the Jets do not have the ability to rattle rookie Bills' QB Trent Edwards. K.I.S.S. says the Bills game plan will be plenty of Lynch and Edwards-to-Evans.
Oakland Raiders at Miami Dolphins (-4):
The linesmakers do not believe in the pre-season vaunted defense of the Oakland Raiders. If they did, this would be an even game as the Fish do not possess the offensive strength to win by anything but the slimmest of margins.
Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns (+4):
Four-point home underdogs to a division rival with a mediocre-to-poor offense strikes me as odd. The Browns get the edge at every key skills position on offense, and the Ravens' defense has been more bend-not-break than dominant. Can the possible absence of TE Kellen Winslow really mean that much?
Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions (+3):
With a conservative QB and a pee-poor passing defense to play against, the Bears' decision to change QBs should look like a wise one. With Greise unlikely to throw deep as frequently as Rex Grossman did, I am interested to see if WR Mushin Muhhammad has his best game of the brief season.
On the Lions side of the ball, WR Shaun MacDonald has been a very pleasant surprise amongst the very large group of third and fourth tier WRS. Having broke into the MSM fantasy football conscious, will he now disappoint? Also of interest is how much RB Kevin Jones plays.
Green Bay Packers at Minnesota Vikings (+1.5):
With the admitting of a RBBC in Green Bay, how the RB touches are split is of high importance. Of more possible value would be a Green Bay offense that relies even more upon the pass. The Vikings will have journeyman Kelly Holcomb under center. It may not be enough to turn any of the Vikings' WRs into viable options.
St Louis Rams at Dallas Cowboys (-13):
With a decimated offensive line and a second-string RB, the Rams look poised for the slaughter against the high-flying Cowboys. How the Rams offense responds is of utmost importance as this team was a source of quality fantasy options. Good luck to former Rutgers' Rb Brian Leonard in his first NFl start.
Hopefully, it will go better than his former team's game against the University of Maryland yesterday. Who would have imagined the University of Connecticut football team would have a better record Rutgers University at the end of September (5-0 v. 4-1).
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers (-3):
Buccaneers' back-up RB Earnest graham went for 75 yards and 2 TDs last week. Will he become a legitimate option in a RBBC with Cadillac Williams? With bye week season upon us, there is no need to wait. Grab him and hope.
Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers (+2):
A month ago, would would have thought the 49ers would be home underdogs to the Seahawks? Will the 49ers passing game appear this week or has Vegas recognized the reality of 2007 versus the expectations.
For the Seahawks, will Nate Burleson step forward and become the sexy WR2 or will the unsexy Bobby Engram retain that title?
Kansas City Chiefs at San Diego Chargers (-11.5):
After the first three games, Top RB Larry Johnson is going to be watched to see how long he remains in freefall from his elite perch. Even if it becomes clear that he will never return to that perch, people will still want to see how bad he does each and every week.
While LJ gets all the negative attention, fellow elite RB Ladanian Tomlinson has struggled, too. The only consolation for his owners is he started this poorly last season, too. If my powers of recall remain intact, he was near parity with back-up Michael Turner after four weeks.
The Houston Texans at Atlanta Falcons (+3), Pittsburgh Steelers at Arizona Cardinals (+6), Denver Broncos at Indianapolis Colts (-9.5) and New England Patriots at Cincinnati Bengals (+7) games were covered in yesterday's "Vegas Says....Week Four". Click it to read.
ESPN is hosting an all-day chat beginning at 10 AM and going through the conclusion of the 4 PM games. Here is the link. Sunday NFL HQ.