Welcome to the fourth week of eliminator breakdown. As I returned to the good ol’ USA on Sunday I noticed we had a pretty good week last week going 3-0 with our picks. As predicted, the New Orleans Saints picked up their first win of the season while the Bengals and Patriots were both also victorious. Let’s keep the momentum going this week! Read on and feel free to comment at the bottom.
Step 1 – Avoid Division Matchups
There were some great division matchups last week. The Cleveland Browns almost extended their winning streak but lost by less than a field goal to the Ravens. The Lions and Packers had a defensive showdown in Detroit (who saw that one coming?), and we saw a true offensive showing in Philadelphia where the Redskins and Eagles had a shoot out. These games were all a blast to watch and will continue to be games I avoid like the plague. Do yourself a favor and avoid the below division games:
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- NY Giants at Washington
- Green Bay at Chicago
- Tennessee at Indianapolis
Step 2 – Avoid Marquee Matchups
There were a lot of places where I picked the Panthers to beat the Steelers on Sunday night. The Panthers are known for being a dominant defensive team especially at home, and the Steelers looked vulnerable last week against Baltimore. Good thing I avoided this game in my eliminator leagues otherwise my season would be over. Some teams show up in primetime. Others do not. Unless you want to take a chance, I would avoid the below marquee games:
- New Orleans at Dallas
- New England at Kansas City
Step 3 – Avoid Picking Against Home Field Advantage
In week two it was the Browns, this past week it was the Giants. Sure it helped that the Texans were dealing with some injuries, but I don’t think many people saw the Giants winning by two touchdowns. I bet the home crowd in New York enjoyed the result and that’s why I avoided it. Be aware and avoid the below games where the favorite is the away team:
- Miami vs. Oakland in London (this is the ultimate test of jet lag, avoid at all costs)
- Carolina at Baltimore
- Detroit at NY Jets
- Atlanta at Minnesota
Step 4 – Make your pick!
Normally I don’t let betting lines sway my opinion of games, but you can’t ignore when a team is a 13 point favorite. The Chargers are looking great after two impressive victories over the Bills last week and the defending Super Bowl Champion Seahawks the week before. On top of that they host the 0-3 Jaguars who have to take a very long trip to get from Florida to San Diego. That’s why I’m taking the San Diego Chargers as my pick of the week:
- San Diego over Jacksonville
Another option I like this week:
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- Pittsburgh over Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay is a team that I expected much more from this season, but after seeing Pittsburgh dominate Carolina last weekend I don’t expect the Steelers to lose to a winless team in front of their home crowd.