N.F.L. Week 4 Predictions: Our Picks Against the Spread

Cleveland Browns at Minnesota Vikings, 1 p.m., CBS

Line: Browns -2 | Total: 53

Kirk Cousins has yet to throw an interception this season, but the Browns (2-1) are the most complete defense the Vikings (1-2) will have seen.

Cousins has thrown for more than 300 yards twice, including last week while running back Dalvin Cook was out with an ankle injury. Cook’s replacement, Alexander Mattison, rushed for 112 yards in his absence. It’s unclear whether Cook will play on Sunday, but if Cook returns or Mattison starts, the Browns’ defense will be up for the challenge. The unit ranks fifth in the league against the rush (201 yards allowed) and second in sacks (14). Meanwhile, Cleveland’s offense last week welcomed back receiver Odell Beckham Jr. from his knee injury. Those factors make betting with the Vikings tough, and the spread may honestly be too low. Pick: Browns -2

Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers, 4:05 p.m., Fox

Line: San Francisco -2.5 | Total: 52

Hello, defense? Is anyone home? Pete Carroll must be asking his team that question after the Seahawks (1-2) allowed opponents to amass over 450 yards of offense in each of the last two games. No amount of Russell Wilson magic can save a game with those defensive performances.

The 49ers (2-1) will be eager to play again after narrowly losing to the Packers on a last-second field goal. But they continue to battle injuries on both sides of the ball, with important players like tight end George Kittle (calf) and Josh Norman (lungs) listed as day-to-day. If Seattle can muster some sort of respectable defensive outing for pride’s sake, then the Seahawks could manage to be competitive and cover the spread. Pick: Seattle +2.5

Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos, 4:25 p.m., CBS

Line: Broncos -1 | Total: 44

Their undefeated record has come against winless opponents, so the Broncos (3-0) will try to get a statement win over the Ravens (2-1), who last week struggled before closing out the Lions. Denver quarterback Teddy Bridgewater will be without receiver K.J. Hamler, the Broncos’ No. 3 receiver, who tore his left anterior cruciate ligament in another big loss to the receiving corps after Jerry Jeudy was placed on injury reserve earlier in the season.

After an overtime loss to open the season, the Ravens have closed out thrilling victories at home and on the road. They should be able to ride that momentum to give Denver its first loss. Pick: Ravens +1

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