Who would have thought that after four weeks of the 2017 NFL season the Buffalo Bills, not the New England Patriots, would be 3-1 and sit atop the AFC East? The Bills are just one of many early season surprises. The Bills defense, which leads the league in scoring defense (15.5 points per game), forced three Atlanta turnovers and two late field goals gave Buffalo a 23-17 win over the Falcons. Cortana’s prediction: Falcons to win – Incorrect.
Also surprising is the New England defense. Last year’s leader in scoring defense, the Patriots are 31st in the NFL in points allowed per game. A 48-yard Graham Gano field goal gave Carolina a 33-30 win over the Patriots and was the second week in a row that the New England defense gave up 30 or more points. Head coach Bill Belichick needs to get the defense fixed or the Patriots will not be defending their Super Bowl title this season. Cortana’s prediction: Patriots to win – Incorrect
Another big surprise thus far this season has been the Los Angeles Rams. They are now 3-1 after a Week 4 win over the Dallas Cowboys. The Rams offense leads the league in scoring averaging over 35 points per game. New head coach Sean McVay has helped Jared Goff become a quality quarterback. Goff was 21-for-36 for 255 yards and two touchdowns in the win over the Cowboys. With the win, the Rams are now in first place in the NFC West. Cortana’s prediction: Cowboys to win – Incorrect
The Detroit Lions, a playoff team last year, may not be as big a surprise but it’s the way they have got to 3-1. The Lions beat Minnesota 14-7 on Sunday and did so with a defense that is creating havoc for opposing offenses. DE Anthony Zettler had three tackles, two sacks, four hits on Vikings QB Case Keenum, and recovered a fumble. The Vikings are 2-2. Cortana’s prediction: Vikings to win – Incorrect
Green Bay started off Week 4 with a Thursday night win over NFC North rival Chicago. Aaron Rodgers threw four touchdown passes and WR Jordy Nelson caught two in the 35-14 victory. Green Bay is 3-1 and the Bears drop to 1-3. Chicago QB Mike Glennon committed four turnovers and will not start in Week 5. Rookie Mitchell Trubisky will start on Monday night when the Bears face Minnesota. Cortana’s prediction: Green Bay to win – Correct
Drew Brees threw for 268 yards and two touchdowns as New Orleans evened its record at 2-2 in a 20-0 win over Miami. The Dolphins offense has been virtually nonexistent the past two weeks. The unit managed just six points in a loss to the Jets a week ago. It could be worse though. Just ask Cleveland, a 31-7 loser to the Cincinnati Bengals, a team that picked up its first win of the season. The Browns, who won one game last year, are 0-4. Cortana’s prediction: Saints to win – Correct
The winless Browns are clearly in the spot that many thought the Jets would reside. New York got a Chandler Catanzaro field goal in overtime to defeat the Jaguars, 23-20. The Jets and the Jaguars are both 2-2. Cortana’s prediction: Jaguars to win – Incorrect
After an upset loss to Chicago a week ago, the Pittsburgh Steelers rebounded for a 26-9 win over AFC North rival Baltimore. Le’Veon Bell showed why he is one of the league’s best running backs. Bell carried 35 times for 144 yards and two touchdowns. Pittsburgh is 3-1. Cortana’s prediction: Steelers to win – Correct
Houston got four touchdown passes form Deshaun Watson and beat Tennessee 57-14. AFC South foe Indianapolis did not fare as well in Seattle. Russell Wilson was 21-of-26 for 295 yards and two touchdowns in a 46-18 Seattle victory. Oakland QB Derek Carr left the Raiders game with Denver early. The result was a 16-10 Broncos win. Carr will miss a few weeks with a fracture in his back. Cortana’s prediction: Broncos to win – Correct
In the NFC East, Philadelphia moved to 3-1 with a 26-24 win over the Chargers. LeGarrette Blount rushed for 136 yards as the Eagles ran for 214 as a team. Cortana’s prediction: Chargers to win – Incorrect. The New York Giants continued to struggle dropping a 25-23 decision to Tampa Bay. The Giants are now 0-4 a year after making the playoffs. Arizona improved to 2-2 with an 18-15 win over San Francisco. Carson Palmer threw for 357 yards in the win. The 49ers drop to 0-4.
The NFL’s only unbeaten, Kansas City, capped off Week 4 with a dramatic 29-20 win over the Washington Redskins. Kareem Hunt ran 21 times for 101 yards and Alex Smith threw for 293. Harrison Butker kicked the game-winning field goal with four seconds remaining. Chiefs LB Justin Houston returned a fumble 13 yards on the game’s last play to set the final score. Kansas City is 4-0. The Redskins drop to 2-2. Cortana’s prediction: Chiefs to win – Correct.
Cortana/Bing success rate was 50% in the week 4 which is not all that great but considering quite a few surprises not totally unexpected.