The NFL regular season’s first quarter concludes Monday night with the landscape having been altered yet again with additional injuries, another rookie quarterback debut and the return of one prominent holdout. Three unbeaten teams also remain, with the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs barely hanging on to their unblemished records in down-to-the-wire road victories.
The Los Angeles Chargers now have Melvin Gordon back in the fold, and although he didn’t see the field in Miami on Sunday, he should be ready for some game action in Week 5 after his first full week of practice. Then, although head coach Jay Gruden wasn’t ready to anoint a starter for next week’s matchup against the Patriots following the Washinton Redskins’ Week 4 loss to the New York Giants, it appeared the torch had been passed to 2019 first-round pick Dwayne Haskins, who replaced an ineffective Case Keenum versus New York. That is until Gruden named Colt McCoy the starter for Sunday’s game.
And yet another starting quarterback has an uncertain immediate future after Mitchell Trubisky went down with a shoulder injury early in the Week 4 Chicago Bears win over the Minnesota Vikings. Chase Daniel, who was effective last season as a short-term starter for Chicago, took over for the remainder of the contest and could be set for another interim assignment.
Finally, it was a rare day of dominance for the road teams Sunday, with 10 of the 13 contests (and 11 of 14 thus far in Week 4 when counting the Philadelphia Eagles’ Thursday night victory over the Packers) being won by the visiting squad. Therefore, there will be plenty of teams looking to put upsets behind them in Week 5, while we’re left to figure out if any of the triumphant underdogs are now due for letdowns.
Without further ado, here’s a live look at the lines at sportsbooks in the US as we begin looking toward Week 5.
NFL Week 5 lines
[odds-feed sport=nfl week=2019REG_5 controls=FALSE odds=pointspread sportsbooks=DraftKings,FanDuel,888SportNJ,SugarHouseNJ,SugarHousePA,ParxPA,RiversCasinoPA,GoldenNuggetNV,PlayMgmNV,WestgateSuperbookNV,WilliamHillNV,WynnNV]
Week 5 betting analysis
Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks (-1.5) — Thursday night
NFL teams and coaches have long groused about the viability of having to play Thursday night games due to the wear and tear on the players’ bodies. The football gods have apparently arranged for a textbook argument in their favor this week. A surely exhausted Rams team now is forced to travel and suit up four days following a 55-40 track meet against the Buccaneers in Week 4. Quarterback Jared Goff’s arm is probably ready to file its own grievance with the NFLPA, considering it just put in two games’ worth of work in the form of 68 pass attempts during Sunday’s losing cause.
In relative terms, the Seahawks were on a tropical — make that desert — vacation. They essentially cruised to an easy 27-10 win over the Cardinals and are now one-point favorites over the defending NFC champs at home. That’s some major movement, considering Los Angeles opened as a 1.5-point favorite early last week. However, after Week 4, the two teams look like a fairly even match. The Rams clearly have some issues on the defensive side of the ball. Meanwhile, Seattle’s former Legion of Boom unit, which appeared shaky over the first three games, showed surprisingly well against an unconventional and fast-paced offense Sunday.
These two squads put on quite a show in their 2018 season series, with the two Rams wins coming by slim margins of two and five points, respectively. While energy levels are sure to be in question, particularly on the Rams side, major injuries aren’t really an issue on each squad at the moment. Los Angeles cornerback Marcus Peters is one possible exception, as he may be entering the concussion protocol after sustaining a helmet-to-helmet hit at the end of his pick-six return versus Tampa Bay.
For the season, the Rams are 3-1 (75.0 percent) ATS, including 2-0 on the road. The Seahawks are 2-2 against the number overall, but 0-2 ATS as a home team specifically. Last season, Los Angeles was 4-2 (66.7 percent) versus the spread in NFC West battles, while Seattle held a 3-3 mark ATS in those contests.
The Seahawks are riding a wave of confidence at the moment courtesy of their 3-1 start, while the Rams suddenly have some serious question marks on defense and Goff also has three Week 4 interceptions to think about. This has the makings of a wire-to-wire battle considering the Rams’ pride and the fact it’s a division game. However, for all the want-to they may have, Los Angeles could well fade in the fourth quarter due to sheer physical attrition.
Arizona Cardinals at Cincinnati Bengals (-3)
The air has seemingly come out of the Air Raid offense over the last two games in particular. Whether that’s been a matter of individual matchups, defenses having more film to go on, or a combination thereof, Kyler Murray and company aren’t quite producing like earlier in the season. However, if there’s a cure for what ails them, it might just be the porous Bengals. Cincinnati heads into a Week 4 Monday night showdown against the division-rival Steelers sporting bottom-feeder marks defending both the run and pass.
Arizona showed well the one other time they had to travel east, giving the Ravens a good bit of trouble in Baltimore. The Bengals do have enough weaponry to take advantage of the Cardinals’ defensive weaknesses, and on that note, it’s worth noting Patrick Peterson will not yet be back for this contest. With Cincy also playing on a short week considering the aforementioned Monday night road contest, this could turn into a relatively high-scoring, four-quarter battle. The point total is therefore a candidate for the Over, even with the Air Raid attack sputtering a bit recently.
Atlanta Falcons at Houston Texans (-4)
The perplexing Falcons face their second straight AFC South foe and will hope for a better result than the egg they laid at home against the first one in Week 4. The Titans seemed to have Atlanta’s number on both sides of the ball and managed to hold Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley to a combined seven catches for 84 yards. Matt Ryan’s final numbers looked outstanding from a fantasy football standpoint, but they were highly deceiving and a byproduct of plenty of prevent defense on the part of Tennessee.
The good news for Atlanta this week is that their opponent is about as inconsistent as they are and also just fumbled away an opportunity for a home victory against a second-year quarterback in the Panthers’ Kyle Allen. The Texans have now seen Deshaun Watson concerningly throw for under 200 yards in two of his last three games, hardly an easy feat in the extremely pass-friendly era the NFL finds itself in. The rest of the offense, including all-world receiver DeAndre Hopkins, also looked downright ordinary Sunday. Then, Kenny Stills, who’d proven a good fit since arriving via trade just before the start of the season, pulled up lame with a hamstring injury against Carolina and could miss Week 5 at minimum.
These two teams have urgency to start finding their stride and rattle off some wins. The Falcons are the more desperate squad at 1-3. Despite their dismal track record over the last few seasons covering the number in interconference games, this looks like a possible exception at the current five-point number.
Baltimore Ravens (-3) at Pittsburgh Steelers
The betting outlook on this game won’t be truly complete until we see what the Steelers look like Monday night against the Bengals. There’s a good chance Pittsburgh puts on one of its better performances and notches its first win against the porous Cincy defense. Normally, that would mean very little if trying to draw a parallel when the next opponent is the Ravens. But that may not necessarily be the case this season.
Baltimore looks perplexingly vulnerable on defense. The ongoing absence of Jimmy Smith (knee) certainly is playing a part. But following a Week 4 home loss to a Browns team that was in turmoil all week, there were reports of infighting in the postgame locker room. What figures to be an ornery bunch that could have Smith back in uniform could be very bad news for Mason Rudolph and his teammates.
The two teams notched victories in each other’s stadiums in last year’s two-game series. The Ravens handled the Steelers at Heinz Field in fairly thorough fashion in Week 4 of 2018, leading to a 26-14 win. The departed duo of Joe Flacco and John Brown played significant roles in that victory. However, of relevance to this season is Baltimore holding James Conner to 19 rushing yards and the fact it
was Ben Roethlisberger under center in that game. While Conner did fare much better in Pittsburgh’s win later in the season, it’s now Rudolph who’ll have to keep the defense honest.
Finally, it’s also worth noting this will be the Steelers’ first taste of Lamar Jackson, as he had all of one pass attempt versus Pittsburgh last season. With the Steelers also on a short week, this looks like a good Ravens bounce-back spot with a cover at minimum. A wager on the Under on the 42.5-point total could be prudent considering Rudolph at quarterback and the fact three of the last four games between the teams have finished under that threshold with more collective offensive talent on the field.
ALSO READ: Week 5 Picks Against The Spread
Buffalo Bills at Tennessee Titans (-2.5)
Surely there were some NFL observers convinced the Bills’ 3-0 start would be exposed as mostly fraudulent in Week 4 when they ran into the Patriots. Instead, Buffalo’s stingy defense gave New England its first scare of 2019. Had it not been for Josh Allen’s premature exit from the contest after a vicious helmet-to-helmet collision, an outright upset may have unfolded. As it was, backup Matt Barkley turned in an admirable effort that nevertheless fell short thanks to New England’s elite defense. Yet the loss doesn’t do justice to just how competitive this Bills team is shaping up, as well as how much of the Fountain of Youth the ageless Frank Gore has clearly partaken in.
Allen’s status will naturally be one to monitor all week. He’s officially in the concussion protocol and will have to be cleared by an independent neurologist, among other steps, before suiting up versus the Titans. Meanwhile, Tennessee – and Marcos Mariota specifically – proved yet again that there’s no counting them out and no telling when the Titans offense will look competent. After a resurgent effort versus Atlanta in Week 4, is there another downswing on the Mariota Rollercoaster coming?
Even on the road, the Buffalo defense has more than enough to make life difficult on the Titans and expose Mariota’s various weaknesses. And while Barkley is a downgrade from Allen, he may actually be less mistake-prone overall in a small sample than his much more dynamic but risk-taking teammate. From an early-week view, a Bills cover here regardless of who’s under center seems feasible.
Chicago Bears (-5) at Oakland Raiders
The Bears and Raiders make the trek across the pond for the first installment of the NFL’s 2019 International Series. Oakland technically will have about four hours of an overall rest advantage on their NFC foe with Chicago having played in the late-game window Week 4. Irrespective of that, this game shapes up as the prototypical “the NFL sends its dullest games to London each year” scenario. The Jaguars have often taken care of ensuring that in the past. In this case, I see the Raiders playing that role.
The surprising upset they pulled off in Indianapolis on Sunday notwithstanding, this is a Raiders team that has proven in the past it will fold in the face of an aggressive team. That’s naturally the most evident on offense, where Derek Carr has often looked lost when pressured heavily during his career. The Bears are therefore about as bad a matchup as he can draw. With a brick-wall front seven that can quickly snuff out any threat of the running game, Carr could be in for a four-quarter helping of unforgiving pressure with Chicago only worrying about putting hits on him.
And on the other side, what has been a Bears passing game that often looks its setting offense back about a half-century may be a lot smoother than its shown thus far. That’s due to both matchup and a likely change at quarterback. Mitchell Trubisky is essentially ruled out for the contest due to the shoulder injury he suffered early in Week 4 against Minnesota. Chase Daniel, who took over Sunday and passed for 195 yards and a touchdown in a tough matchup, could easily capitalize on a Raiders defense already vulnerable to the pass and now confirmed to be missing Vontaze Burfict due to a season-ending suspension.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Carolina Panthers (-3)
Minshew Magic is apparently a real thing. Yet Allen Awesomeness may not be too far behind.
Granted, the Panthers’ second-year quarterback needs to be much more careful with the ball after losing a whopping three fumbles versus the Texans in Week 4. But Carolina still found a way to pull out the road upset, with Christian McCaffrey naturally the focal point of that effort. The 2017 first-round pick logged a whopping 37 touches and scored Carolina’s only touchdown. Allen’s rapport with weapons such as D.J. Moore, Curtis Samuel and Greg Olsen is still a work in progress, however. Yet that might not be as much of a problem as it typically would be against Jacksonville’s secondary.
That’s because star cornerback Jalen Ramsey seems unlikely to be on the field – for Jacksonville at least – as we start the march to Week 5. Ramsey’s take-your-pick assortment of injury designations would certainly have a part to play in that. But his pending trade demand likely carries even more weight. In fact, the injuries, while presumably legitimate, serve as perfect cover for Ramsey to continue to sit while the Jaguars continue seeking out a trade partner and protect their chip.
While the Jags managed to pull out the road win in Denver on Sunday, one aspect of their performance coach Doug Marrone will have plenty to harp on is their secondary play. Joe Flacco looked the best he has all season, while Emmanuel Sanders and Courtland Sutton touched up Jacksonville’s back-end defense for a 104-yard effort and a pair of touchdowns, respectively. One player above reproach Monday is Leonard Fournette. The mercurial running back exploded for a 225-yard rushing day that included an 81-yard rumble.
This will be one of the toughest games of the week to prognosticate. The Under on the point total seems like a prudent way to gain exposure. The two young quarterbacks are capable of stalling enough drives out to make that possible.
Minnesota Vikings (-5) at New York Giants
Speaking of potentially tricky spots, here we are with a Vikings-Giants tilt that would have likely seemed like a no-brainer to evaluate prior to the season. The dynamic around New York clearly changed the minute rookie Daniel Jones took over for Eli Manning under center in Week 4. Two straight wins later, New York doesn’t look so much like the bottom dweller most assumed they would be this season. And that’s without Saquon Barkley (ankle) available over the last game and a half.
Then, don’t look now, but here comes another weapon for Jones’ pass-catching arsenal. Golden Tate has completed his season-opening four-game suspension. Beginning Week 5, New York lines up a top receiver foursome of Tate, Sterling Shepard, Cody Latimer and Bennie Fowler. A fifth “unofficial” member of the wideout club is ultra-athletic Evan Engram. In the backfield, Wayne Gallman got his interim starting tenure in Barkley’s stead off to a strong start versus the Redskins and should prove capable of carrying the load in the short term.
In turn, the Vikings have a rather unexpected depressed outlook just four games into the season. The inefficiency of the passing attack is apparently starting to fray some nerves (see Thielen, Adam). Coach Mike Zimmer’s insistence of playing a run-heavy brand of offense his mentor Bill Parcells would undoubtedly give his blessing to has reduced the likes Kirk Cousins, Thielen and Stefon Diggs to pedestrian performers over the first quarter of the season.
This game could give Minnesota’s embattled air attack a temporary reprieve. Although Case Keenum and first-time starter Dwayne Haskins couldn’t really take full advantage Sunday, New York’s secondary has been exposed on numerous occasions early. And had Washington’s rookie sensation Terry McLaurin been available in Week 4, that may have been evident once again. Diggs and Thielen certainly are capable of striking deep, leading to a possible shift toward more of an aggressive approach for at least a week.
Jones may also find life the hardest it’s been over the first three games in this spot. The Vikings defense is a complete unit that’s capable of giving any quarterback fits, let alone a first-year one. A Vikings cover certainly seems plausible here, even if it isn’t accomplished until late in second half.
New England Patriots (-15) at Washington Redskins
Coach Jay Gruden and his guys can’t seem to catch a break. Even a potentially winnable spot against the Giants blows up in their face badly in Week 4. And now a likely annoyed Patriots offense heads into the Nation’s Capital. Tom Brady and company were repeatedly stifled by a stalwart Bills defense in Week 4. New England looked very ordinary on offense as a result. It’s safe to say that doesn’t sit well with Brady and his teammates on that side of the ball.
There’s not much to indicate the ‘Skins are capable of even a cover of this massive number. New England’s defense appears to be on a completely different level this season. Whether they’re feasting on a struggling veteran in Keenum, a rookie making his first start in Haskins, or another veteran coming off an extended absence due to a gruesome leg injury in Colt McCoy, this looks like a proverbial black hole for the Washington offense.
There isn’t necessarily any hope of them slowing down the Patriots, either. The Redskins have been gashed through both the ground and air this season. Brady-led New England have been near the top of the league ATS in interconference games during his 17-plus seasons as the starting quarterback and there’s little reason to think the trend doesn’t persist in Week 5.
New York Jets at Philadelphia Eagles (-14.5)
Speaking of massive interconference spreads, this one particularly stands out. The Jets will be coming off a bye week and still have an outside shot of getting Sam Darnold (mononucleosis) back under center. Darnold was cleared for non-contact drills and throwing Monday and is reportedly pushing to suit up against the Eagles. The medical staff will naturally have final word. Having their starting quarterback back under center would likely be a huge boon for an offense that was hopeless with Luke Falk at the controls back in Week 3.
If Darnold does make it back, New York has a much better chance of making a dent against an Eagles secondary that’s saddled with a multitude of injuries and that’s been bad even when close to full health. Even the highly versatile Le’Veon Bell has a chance to get in on the fun there, considering his pass-catching chops.
On the other sideline, Philadelphia is looking to find the groove many though they’d be in right from the jump this season. Carson Wentz and his offensive cohorts came to life in a significant road upset of the Packers last Thursday night.Wentz was highly efficient with three touchdown passes on a modest 16 completions.
However, it was the two-headed rushing attack of Jordan Howard and Miles Sanders that stood out with 159 combined rushing yards and a pair of Howard rushing scores. The two could certainly keep the chains moving again in Week 5, especially if C.J. Mosley (groin) misses for Gang Green again.
For what it’s worth, Philly has a solid 8-5 mark ATS in non-conference games during Wentz’s three-season-plus tenure at quarterback. The Jets are an ugly 4-8 versus the number under those circumstances during the same stretch. Those numbers could carry circumstantial relevance here given the quality of each team’s current roster. A confirmed Darnold return later in the week would likely shrink this number somewhat, though.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints (-3)
Ahead of the season, we would have been talking about how a high-octane passing attack could ultimately take over this game between two NFC South rivals. We’re still looking through that lens, but the view is a bit topsy-turvy compared to the preseason outlook. It’s the Buccaneers, fresh off putting on their best Kurt Warner-era Rams impression at the expense of the Hall of Fame quarterback’s old squad, that check in boasting the video-game-like numbers. Conversely, the Drew Brees-less Saints are seemingly playing an NFC North brand of football for the moment if their grindy 12-10 win over the Cowboys on Sunday night is any indication.
This sets up as a highly intriguing scenario on the Week 5 slate. Jameis Winston has thrown for a combined 685 yards and seven touchdowns in the last two games alone. The Buccaneers also seem to have found a lead back in Ronald Jones, who continued to put his disastrous rookie season firmly in the rearview mirror with another solid effort versus Los Angeles. And the Mike Evans/Chris Godwin duo look like seamless fits in coach Bruce Arians’ offense. Sure, there’s still plenty of room for improvement. Tampa has no real third receiver, and that’s one injury away from mattering a whole lot. And despite Arians’ preseason proclamations that there would be plenty of involvement for O.J. Howard in his offense, it’s yet to translate to the field.
Teddy Bridgewater is doing his best to get his guys going on the other sideline. The 2015 first-round pick has been serviceable but far from spectacular thus far, but he does have a 2-0 mark as a starter after the defeat of Dallas. The defense had plenty to do with that victory and Bridgewater himself was mired in a very tough matchup; however, coach Sean Payton may have no choice but to open up the playbook in Week 5. Tampa’s offense can clearly put pressure on a defense.
Arians also doesn’t figure to be shy about keeping the foot on the gas pedal against a coach like Payton and in a raucous road environment. Therefore, a close enough game for a Buccaneers cover is certainly in play here. The Over on a point total is likewise feasible – New Orleans hasn’t really proven capable of a ton of offense under Bridgewater, but that could change to an extent at home against a Buccaneers secondary that gave up over 500 yards passing to Jared Goff on Sunday and that could still be feeling some of the physical after-effects of chasing down his 68 pass attempts a week later.
Denver Broncos at Los Angeles Chargers (-6)
The Broncos are in a serious freefall virtually no one could seem coming prior to the season. And rather surprisingly, it’s the Denver defense’s fault as much as any other component of the team. A once-proud unit has been completely incapable of stopping the run. In turn, that’s made life more difficult on the secondary. Gardner Minshew and Leonard Fournette combined to bedevil the Broncos on their home turf and squeak out a two-point win.
Ironically, Joe Flacco and his receivers arguably turned in their best performance of the season. The veteran quarterback eclipsed 300 yards while Emmanuel Sanders and Courtland Sutton combined for 11 receptions, 166 yards and two Sutton touchdowns. And while the running game took a back seat to an extent as a result of game flow, the combo of Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman have already proven capable of doing their part when asked to.
It’s hard to gauge this Chargers team, as it’s squeaked out an overtime win at him against the Colts, dropped back-to-back games against the Lions and Texans, and then took care of business in somewhat unremarkable fashion versus a Dolphins team that may not win a game all season. The biggest news surrounding the team is the return of Melvin Gordon from his holdout. Gordon was available but unused in Sunday’s win at Miami. Austin Ekeler has proven fully capable of lead-back status himself, so this should be an interesting, but immensely talented, backfield dynamic beginning in Week 5.
The Broncos’ significant problems against the run make this Chargers team especially dangerous against them. Nevertheless, Los Angeles has proven incapable of putting any team not named the Dolphins away so far. As a result, a bet on a Broncos cover at plus-money (as of Monday afternoon) isn’t a bad way to go. There’s too much talent on the team to remain among the winless ranks with truly spiraling outfits like those in Miami and Washington. For those willing to take on even a bit more risk, there’s also a moneyline opportunity here at a very appealing price. The Bolts did have to travel across the country this past week, adding just a smidgen of difficulty to their Week 5 prep.
Green Bay Packers at Dallas Cowboys (-3.5)
The marquee matchup of Week 5 should live up to its hype. Green Bay comes in off its first loss but will have had extra time to prepare. The Cowboys are smarting from the first blemish on their 2019 record as well after dropping a two-point decision to the Saints on Sunday night. Aaron Rodgers has a 7-1 record straight up versus Dallas as a starter in his career. Yet in Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys have the ideal weapon with which to exploit the Pack’s extremely poor track record defending the run thus far this season.
The likeliest outcome here between these two members of the NFC’s upper echelon is a four-quarter classic. Neither team is likely to just steamroll the other. Green Bay does have the disadvantage of going on the road. Yet as already alluded to, that’s hardly fazed Rodgers against the Cowboys in the past. Green Bay will also have the added couple days’ rest on its side. Factoring in Dallas also had a tough Sunday night road matchup in Week 4, and that edge is compounded.
The two teams will trade punches, and I see less than a field goal separating the two by game’s end. Rodgers demonstrated in Thursday night’s Week 4 loss to the Eagles that he still has plenty of life left in his right arm after a so-so first three weeks. There is one major injury question for the Packers, however. Davante Adams will have to prove he’s past the turf toe he suffered against Philadelphia for Green Bay to be at its most competitive in this showdown. The news as of Monday afternoon was encouraging in that regard – Adams met with a foot specialist Friday and was told he may not miss any time.
Indianapolis Colts at Kansas City Chiefs (-11)
KC survived a road scare against a game Lions squad to remain undefeated in Week 4. Meanwhile, the Colts bombed as home favorites against the Raiders. The two squads therefore come into a primetime matchup in two likely different collective headspaces. Indianapolis also has two big health-related question mark in the form of lead back Marlon Mack and wide receiver T.Y. Hilton. Mack exited the loss to Oakland with an ankle injury, although he maintains he could have returned. Hilton missed the game altogether after suffering his quadriceps injury in Week 3.
On their end, the Chiefs had Tyreek Hill working out pregame in Week 4 and video of his route-running against air was impressive. The elite speedster was slated for additional testing Monday and is still likeliest to miss Week 5. However, the Chiefs running game – helmed by Darrel Williams and LeSean McCoy again in Week 4 – demonstrated it can pick up the slack even when not at full strength. On that note, there’s a chance Damien Williams returns from his knee bruise to suit up against Indy.
Kansas City’s immense home-field edge should only be amplified by the electric environment of a night game. So, too, should Travis Kelce’s already massive upside against a Colts defense that often filters targets toward the tight end. Indianapolis badly needs Hilton healthy here to have a chance of keeping it close for four quarters. With his status firmly in the air at the moment, the 11-point projected edge for the home team doesn’t look so far-fetched. If Hilton’s and Mack’s status trend favorably later in the week, this number should shrink, although not likely than by more than 1-1.5 points.
Cleveland Browns at San Francisco 49ers (-4) – Monday night
What shapes up as an intriguing slate overall appropriately caps off with a fascinating interconference matchup. The well-rested and surprising 49ers come off the bye week to take on a Browns team no one’s quite been able to figure out yet. Then again, San Fran has had an element of uncertainty/surprise around it as well. Not many expected a 3-0 start from Kyle Shanahan’s crew. They’ve impressively gotten it done almost completely without the services of notable offseason acquisition Tevin Coleman. The former Falcon suffered a high-ankle sprain in the season opener and did not practice Monday. However, there presumably remains enough time for him to recover sufficiently and be active in a week’s time.
As for the rest of the Niners, there are no real new significant injury concerns. Moreover, the running back shelf is well-stocked in case Coleman sits again – Matt Breida and Raheem Mostert have proven more than capable of shouldering the ground-game load.
As for Cleveland, only time will tell whether the real Browns are the versions seen in Weeks 1 and 3, or that which was on display in a Week 4 road upset of the division-rival Ravens. The offense is trying to find its footing and was on to a very good thing in the form of a Baker Mayfield-Jarvis Landry connection against Baltimore. However, Landry was forced from the contest with a concussion. That immediately puts his Week 5 status in doubt, although he at least as an extra day to recover. Odell Beckham seems to still be searching for his place in coach Freddie Kitchens’ scheme, however. He has just 76 combined receiving yards in the last two games.
Luckily, there are no such questions about running back Nick Chubb. After ripping through Baltimore for 165 yards and three touchdowns, the 2018 second-round pick has 398 rushing yards through four games and 14 receptions as well. San Francisco’s defense has been very improved over the first three games and has been adept at shutting down both the run and pass about equally well, so the challenge will be significant for Mayfield and company on the road.
Given that Mayfield and Jimmy Garoppolo are both capable of their fair share of mistakes, a bet on the Under of the current 47.5-point projected total may be the most prudent wager associated with this game.