For the second year in a row, the NFL has created Color Rush uniforms for their Thursday Night Football games. They began the tradition in Week 10 of last season, and this season they have given every team a jersey.
The Color Rush jerseys have the same color shirt and pants, and while some work, like the Saints and Vikings, others like the Dolphins, an all-orange uniform, are a fashion failure.
On Thursday night, the Miami Dolphins will have to play in these ugly orange Color Rush uniforms. You might as well call them the Miami Traffic Cones, because that is how orange they look. It is unappealing and it doesn’t look very professional in my opinion. I would have loved to see what a teal or white option would have looked like for this team. Because they are wearing orange, the Bengals, whose primary color is orange, will wear white. And let’s just say that the Bengals will be the sharper team on the field Thursday night.
The Color Rush uniforms are a great idea, let’s just have the designers be a little more consistent in their designs.
Here is what you need to know for Week 4:
Game of the Week
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
Last year’s AFC wild cards are meeting on Sunday Night Football for what should shape up as an important matchup.
Both of these teams have a lot in common. They are both 2-1, and should have their star running back returning. The Steelers will get back Le’Veon Bell, who has just completed his three-game suspension. And while it is still uncertain whether Jamaal Charles will play for the Chiefs, his participation in practice earlier this week is a good sign that he should make his 2016 debut against the Steelers.
The Steelers were limited to three points last week by the Eagles, who surprisingly thumped them in Philadelphia. Now, they face a Chiefs defense at home that also only allowed three points last week. In fact, they forced eight turnovers from the Jets, one of the most impressive stats we will see all year. I doubt they match that number this week on the road against a much more efficient offense.
The Steelers need a bounce back victory, and it won’t come easy against the Chiefs, but I think they will get it on Sunday night. Having Bell, a Top 5 running back, and Antonio Brown, a Top 5 receiver, will make it very difficult for the Chiefs to win. Steelers 31, Chiefs 20
Upset of the Week
Jacksonville Jaguars over Indianapolis Colts
This is a very crucial game for the Jaguars. Head coach Gus Bradley has the hottest seat in the NFL, and a loss would put them at 0-4 and could possibly put his seat on fire. In the last two seasons, the team that lost the Week 4 London game has fired their coach.
The Colts were close to falling to an identical record of the Jaguars at 0-3, but T.Y. Hilton’s touchdown with less than two minutes to go against the Chargers last Sunday got them their first win of the season.
This is the Colts’ first game in franchise history to be played outside of North America, and this is the Jaguars’ fourth. I think that gives Jacksonville a huge advantage as many of the team’s players have undergone a week of practice while battling the time difference. The Jaguars won last year’s game and have plans to do the same this year.
Last year, the Colts and Jags split their two games. The Colts won at home in overtime by a field goal, while the Jags won in Jacksonville, 51-16.
I have the Jags in this game because most of their players know that they are fighting to keep Bradley’s job, and they have played well against the Colts as of late. A win here could give Jacksonville that boost to turn their season around.
Jaguars 34, Colts 27
Fantasy Start of the Week
Redskins WR Jamison Crowder
The wide receiver situation is a bit hectic in Washington nowadays. Pierre Garçon and DeSean Jackson are the starters, both in the final years of their contracts, and Josh Doctson, their first round pick has been in and out of the lineup with injuries. However, it is Jamison Crowder, the second-year player from Duke, who has lead the team in targets and touchdowns. He has scored a touchdown in each of the last two games and he faces the defense that has allowed the most fantasy points to wide receivers this season, the Cleveland Browns. Give Crowder the green light and start him in all formats.
Fantasy Sit of the Week
Jets WR Brandon Marshall
Marshall is one of my favorite players in the NFL, but I can’t play him this week. He has yet to corral a touchdown in three games this season, and he is unlikely to get one in Week 4 as he will likely be covered by Richard Sherman on Sunday when the Seahawks visit the Jets. He had a 100-yard game in Week 2 against a bad Bills secondary, and in Week 3, when he faced an elite secondary in Kansas City, it showed. He only caught three balls for 27 yards. He’s a WR3 at best this week, so unless you are in an extremely deep league and can’t afford to bench him, start a better option.
Fantasy Pick-up of the Week
Panthers RB Cameron Artis-Payne
When Jonathan Stewart went down with an injury in Week 2, many believed Fozzy Whittaker would be the one to take the bulk of the carries. It was not Whittaker, but rather Cameron Artis-Payne, who had 12 carries for 47 yards against a great Minnesota front seven. This week, he draws the abysmal Atlanta defense, and he should be able to have a great game. It baffles me that he is available in more than three-quarters of ESPN leagues, so if you have a running back on bye or recently injured, Artis-Payne is a good fill-in.
Lock of the Week
Cincinnati Bengals over Miami Dolphins
Normally when I pick a lock every week, it is an easy decision. This one wasn’t as easy, which plays into the excitement of the NFL that anything can happen on any given Sunday, or Thursday for that matter, because I have the Bengals beating the Dolphins on Thursday night.
Miami could win on Thursday night, but they could barely beat a Cody Kessler-led Browns team at home. Miami is also very injured, with Jarvis Landry and DeVante Parker both questionable, and Arian Foster unlikely to play. The Dolphins are also on the road, and they have lost seven of their last 10 road games.
The Bengals are 1-2, and really need this game in order to stay in the hunt in the AFC North, where they currently sit in third place behind the 2-1 Steelers and the undefeated Ravens. It should be an easy win for Cincinnati, but they have seen games recently where they don’t execute at home. This is not a good time for that to happen. However, I don’t think they will come up short.
Bengals 24, Dolphins 10
Buzzer's Best Bet
Outsports co-founder Jim Buzinski will make one pick each week against the spread.
Dolphins minus 7.5 at Bengals. Pick: Bengals
I agree with Jeremy’s assessment above. The Dolphins are playing their third road game already this season and are banged up. The Bengals are better than their 1-2 record shows and will be primed for prime time. Bengals 27, Dolphins 16.
Last week: 0-1. Season: 1-2.
Hot Player of the Week
Panthers LB Luke Kuechly
My friend wants to marry him for her 18th birthday, and while I don’t think I can make that happen, I can make him my Hot Player of the Week.
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports