Atlanta Falcons to Cover Against Deceptive 3-0 Patriots at Home

Alfred KonuwaFeatured ColumnistSeptember 29, 2013


The New England Patriots may be the most vulnerable 3-0 team in the NFL.  With an empty cupboard of weapons, Tom Brady's contribution to New England's normally explosive offense is more similar to a band aid's contribution an open wound.

Atlanta should be one of many teams this week likely to cover a small point spread by a significant margin. 

Week 4 features a tempting slate of home underdogs and several games with point spreads hovering around field-goal range.  Given the blowouts that have already been seen through three weeks of NFL play, many games may not be as close as their teeny-tiny point spreads indicate.


Atlanta (-2.5) over New England (via 5Dimes)

Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons are 1-2.  A team with Super Bowl aspirations cannot afford to start the season 1-3, especially with the New Orleans Saints a likely 4-0 team once all is said and done with Week 4.

The Falcons get an emotional edge as a home team on a nationally televised game with Matt Ryan coming off a loss in which he dueled Miami Dolphins' second-year quarterback, Ryan Tannehill.

Atlanta's two losses have come against undefeated teams in the Saints and the much-improved Dolphins.  Two of New England's three wins have come against teams with losing records, with the exception being the depleted 2-1 New York Jets, who should eventually come down to earth.  

The Falcons rank fourth in the critical yards-per-play category, while the Patriots are a dismal 29th.  Belichick's smoke and mirrors with a talent-deficient team may work against weak divisional foes, but Atlanta is too talented and too good at home for New England to hide its glaring flaws. 

Prediction: Atlanta, 30-13


Houston (+3) over Seattle (via BOVADA)

The Seattle Seahawks are coming off back-to-back blowout wins at home, but in Week 4 they are playing a road game in the central time zone.  Seattle's record-setting homefield crowd noise will not be traveling with the team to Houston.  Coming off a 30-9 blowout loss, the Texans gain value as Seattle's 28-point blowout win over the Jacksonville Jaguars makes for a 49-point swing.

The chances of Seattle continuing to win big are much slimmer on the road, while Houston will be looking to bounce back after a rout.

Houston is a talented home underdog more than capable of hanging with Seattle.  The Seahawks aren't the same team on the road, and Houston's top-ten run defense should bottle up Marshawn Lynch and the Seahawk's run-first offense. 

Prediction:  Houston, 20-16


Kansas City (-4) over New York Giants (via

There is a reason Andy Reid is 2-0 against the NFC East this season.  The former Philadelphia Eagles coach spent 14 years watching countless hours of film to game-plan for teams within this division. This familiarity gives Big Red and the Kansas City Chiefs a distinct advantage. 

Facing one of the toughest home-field advantages, an incompetent Giants offensive line will go head-to-head with one of the NFL's best defensive lines.  The Chiefs lead the league in sacks, and their constant pressure on Eli Manning should force yet another turnover-riddled game for the football Giants.  

At -9, the New York Giants are currently dead last in turnover differential.  At +9, the Chiefs lead the league. 

Prediction: Kansas City, 28-17

Week 3 ATS: 1-2

Season ATS: 3-5-1


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