Current record: 1-2
Week 1 is always tough to predict or bet on in any sport, and NFL football is no different. Looking back at the games last week, New England vs Miami was the swing game and if it weren’t for a fumble at Miami’s 11 yard-line, we are likely looking at a 2-1 start. As for the Saints vs Packers…. there’s not much of an explanation there. I did take the Rams vs the Bears and the Rams steamrolled their way to a cover in that game by a score of 34-14. But the NFL season does not stop and neither do we. It is time to find our best bets for week 2.
Buffalo Bills (-3) @ Miami Dolphins
Despite being burned by the Dolphins last week, I still need to see more before I’m fully convinced that they’re for real. Their defense is elite, but I still doubt them on offense. Tua Tagovailoa has shown flashes but the fact that Miami was rumored to be shopping for a quarterback over the Summer after just one season with Tua should tell you all you need to know about where he stands. The Bills had a very disappointing week 1 game vs the Pittsburgh Steelers. Pittsburgh bested the Buffalo Bills by a score of 23-16. Some teams do need to get punched in the mouth before they actually round into form and I do believe the Bills are better on both sides of the ball than Miami is. I believe the Bills go into Miami and win by a score of 31-17.
Los Angeles Rams (-3.5) @ Indianapolis Colts
The Rams look legit this year. They lost Cam Akers in the backfield before the season started but they look fine without him. Matthew Stafford looks rejuvenated and is a perfect fit for this dynamic Rams offense. Stafford and head coach, Sean McVay have found a very comfortable groove. They look to have a good relationship where they trust each other. Matthew Stafford finally has a dominant defense for the first time in his career and has two legit #1 receivers in Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods.
Carson Wentz looked decent for the Colts in week 1 but seemed like he had pressure in his face all game. He was not sacked once, but was clearly effected by the pressure. This week he’ll be across from arguably the most dominant defensive player in the last decade. Aaron Donald will make Sunday very difficult for Carson Wentz and the offense. The rams will win this game 28-20.
Las Vegas Raiders (+6.5) @ Pittsburgh Steelers
The Steelers had one of the most surprising performances of the week last week. They punched the Buffalo Bills in the mouth and held Josh Allen and the offense to just 16 points. There will not be many other teams who will be able to say that this year. Ben Roethlisberger had a very average game but was able to move the ball effectively and ultimately win the game 23-16. It’s no secret that his best years are behind him but Ben can still have moments of brilliance. The Raiders are coming off of a huge win against the Baltimore Ravens. In arguably the sloppiest game of week 1, the Raiders were able to win an overtime thriller on Monday night by a score of 33-27.
The difference-makers on this team are Darren Waller and Maxx Crobsy. Darren Waller was flat-out unstoppable and the clear number-one option for Derek Carr. He had 10 receptions for 105 yards and a touchdown and will likely get the majority of the tagets this week as well. The Steelers historically have struggled against dominant tight ends, just ask Rob Gronkowski. Maxx Crosby was a problem for Lamar Jackson and the Ravens last week. If he can get home against a quarterback like Lamar, I do not see him having trouble doing the same against Big Ben. I do think the Steelers win this game, but I think this will be one of the closer games of the week. Pittsburgh will come out on top by a score of 34-31.
Tennessee Titans (+6.5) @ Seattle Seahawks
Tennessee got flat-out embarressed last week against the Cardinals. I am a big believer in bounce-back games and this is a huge opportunity for the Titans. Ryan Tannehill has the weapons and offensive line to put him in a position to put points on the board. One thing that will be missing from this game that Tannehill should be thankful for is Chandler Jones. Jones recorded five sacks against Tannehill and the Titans last week and made it difficult for the Titans to put drives together.
Another factor that should benefit the Titans is that Russell Wilson and Kyler Murray are very similar quarterbacks. Although Kyler Murray had his way with the Titans’ defense, I believe that game will coniditon them for similar play style. The Titans should have their eyes set on winning the below-average AFC South, and two losses to start the season will not be easy to come back from. The old saying goes, “the hungry dog runs faster”. The Titans will shock the whole league by going into Seattle and upsetting the Seahawks 24-20.
Minnesota Vikings @ Arizona Cardinals (-4)
The Arizona Cardinals are REALLY good this year. Kyler Murray may be the best fantasy quarterback this season and the defense is elite. DeAndre Hopkins is reminding everyone how good of a receiver he actually is. Last week he had six catches for 83 yards and two touchdowns against the Titans. They are a very well-balanced team and have Pro Bowl level talent all over the field. The Minnesota Vikings are still trying to find their identity, and I don’t think Kirk Cousins is the guy that brings them to the next level. I understand they have elite play-makers on offense and a solid defense, but losing to Cincinatti is not how you want to start the season. I think the Cardinals feed off of the home crowd’s energy and continue their hot start and win this game pretty handidly. Cardinals win this game 34-17.
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