NFL WEEKLY PICK 'EM: WEEK 2

September 15, 2016

We break the lines for each game for Week 2 of the 2016 NFL season below and offer our predictions.

 

NEW YORK (-1.5) at BUFFALO

So here's the deal with this game. The New York Jets are far and away the better team, but we have the whole "Rex Ryan is playing his old team" dynamic where Rex usually gets his guys just a bit more amped than usual. However, adrenaline can only get you so far, and the Jets impressive defensive line (7 total sacks in Week 1) will get to play an offensive line with an ailing Cordy Glenn and Sheldon Richardson returning from suspension. Being in Buffalo, though, expect the Bills to play the Jets close.

 

JETS 24 BILLS 21

 

CINCINNATI (+3) at PITTSBURGH

I'm expecting a high-scoring affair, which is not the norm when it comes to two AFC North teams playing each other. The Bengals offensive line looked shaky in Week 1, and I would expect the Steelers defense to blitz and keep the pressure on Dalton. The Steelers also don't appear to be missing Le'Veon Bell, with DeAngleo Williams going into Week 2 with the most rushing yards in the league.

 

BENGALS 27 STEELERS 34

 

TENNESSEE (+6) at DETROIT

While I don't think the Titans will win this game, I do think they will cover the spread. The Titans cornerbacks do not match up well against Golden Tate, Marvin Jones, Anquan Boldin, and I think Eric Ebron could have a big week fantasy-wise after scoring a touchdown in Week 1. The Titans are going to need to pound the rock with Demarco Murray and Derrick Henry to win this game, but the Lions offense can score so quickly that they may put the game out of reach by halftime, forcing Mariota to try and throw.

 

TITANS 20 LIONS 23

 

BALTIMORE (-7) at CLEVELAND

I am utterly shocked that the Josh McCown-led Browns are only 7-point underdogs against a Ravens team that impressed in week one. It's going to be a long day in the Dawg Pound.

 

RAVENS 28 BROWNS 7

 

DALLAS (+3) at WASHINGTON

The Redskins defense really unraveled against (in our opinion) the best offensive unit last week in Pittsburgh, but I would be surprised if Jay Gruden doesn't have Josh Norman shadow Dez Bryant in this game after all the criticism. The real battle will be on the other side of the ball, where Dallas' defense looks pedestrian at best. Jordan Reed is a match up nightmare against the Cowboys linebacking unit and the pass rush won't be able to get to Cousins.

 

COWBOYS 14 REDSKINS 22

 

NEW ORLEANS (+4.5) at NEW YORK

At first glance, I thought this was a bet I would put on the Saints, but when you think about it, the Giants should go 2-0. Sure, Drew Brees threw for over 400 yards last week, but the trio of Brandin Cooks, Willie Snead and Michael Thomas go up against DRC, Janoris Jenkins and Eli Apple this week, which is a much tougher challenge. Additionally, with the Saints' Delvin Breaux out for the next 6 or so weeks with a broken tibia, Odell Beckham Jr. gets to go up against a young PJ Williams. Oh, and the game is at MetLife. Just too much working against New Orleans here.

 

SAINTS 21 GIANTS 31

 

SAN FRANCISCO (+14) at CAROLINA

I threw serious shade at San Francisco last week and they ended up routing the Rams 28-0. This week, they come back down to reality playing a pissed off Panthers team at home. No wonder the line is +14!

 

49ERS 3 PANTHERS 24

 

MIAMI (EVEN) at NEW ENGLAND

Miami actually played well last week in Seattle, but the New England Patriots stunning the Cardinals in the desert left a mark on me. The Patriots historically just don't lose at home. But is it Tom Brady or the team? That's up to Jimmy Garoppolo, and based on his performance last week, he's up to the task.

 

DOLPHINS 24 PATRIOTS 27

 

KANSAS CITY (+2) at HOUSTON

The Chiefs are on a high from their franchise-record comeback win against division rivals San Diego last week, and I expect that momentum to carry into Houston. I expect Eric Fisher/Mitchell Schwartz to do OK against a recovering JJ Watt and the loss of Brian Cushing could be a factor in a game like this. The question on defense for the Chiefs is will they be able to put pressure on Brock Osweiler? If so, they can sneak a win.

 

CHIEFS 24 TEXANS 22

 

SEATTLE (EVEN) at LOS ANGELES

How in the holy hell is this line set at even? Did Bovada even watch the Rams debut or were they too busy watching the streaker that ran onto the field?

 

SEAHAWKS 27 RAMS 7

 

TAMPA BAY (+7) at ARIZONA

This game may win my "most interesting game of the week" award. Jameis Winston looked very good in his regular season debut, but I fully expect Bruce Arians to atone for his surprise loss at home in prime time. I want to see how the young Bucs offense follows up a divisional win by going into a hostile environment against a great team.

 

BUCCANEERS 17 CARDINALS 28

 

JACKSONVILLE (+3) at SAN DIEGO

The Jaguars are legitimately pissed that they let the game against Green Bay slip away. They fully expected to win, and this seems to be a new team with a new mentality and swagger. The Chargers lost their biggest weapon (Keenan Allen) to an ACL injury, so Travis Benjamin, Tyrell Williams and Dontrelle Inman are going to have to try and catch passes against Prince Amukamara, Davon House, and Jalen Ramsey. DT Malik Jackson is no rookie to going against Philip Rivers, and I fully expect Todd Wash to let the pass rush loose this week against Rivers, who is a statue in the pocket.

 

JAGUARS 30 CHARGERS 10

 

ATLANTA (+5) at OAKLAND

Yeah... Atlanta has maybe the worst pass rush in the NFL and are going against the best offensive line. Oakland should handle the Falcons this week. Derek Carr might throw for 400 yards this week.

 

FALCONS 17 RAIDERS 35

 

INDIANAPOLIS (EVEN) at DENVER

Week 1 was such a summary of the Colts in a nut shell - Andrew Luck playing at an elite level, but not able to overcome a terrible roster, especially on defense. Luck has a much bigger challenge this week in Von Miller and the Broncos defense, so don't expect quite the same impressive performance in Week 2. Trevor Siemian going from the Panthers defense to the Colts defense this week is like going from a Ferrari to a Daewoo Lanos, and the Broncos have had a few extra days to game plan and recover. 

 

COLTS 18 BRONCOS 24

 

GREEN BAY (-3) at MINNESOTA

The Packers are such a good team, but the Vikings get to debut their new stadium during prime time on Sunday Night Football. This game should be close, and the fact that the Packers have no tape to watch Sam Bradford in Norv Turner's scheme can be an advantage for Minnesota, but not a big enough advantage to win. That is, if Bradford gets the start.

 

PACKERS 26 VIKINGS 21

 

PHILADELPHIA (+3) at CHICAGO

Weird game to put on Monday Night Football this early in the season, but then again, the NFL subjected us to a Rams/49ers slop fest, so par for the course, I guess. Carson Wentz was impressive in his debut, but can he carry over this Jon Dorenbos magic to Soldier Field? If this game was in Philly, I would give the Eagles the edge here.

 

EAGLES 18 BEARS 20

 

 

All betting lines are from Bovada from ESPN.com.

 

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