The Pats Pulpit Pick Six got off to a HOT start in Week 1, with a 5-1 record for our Pick Six picks, and an overall record of 20-11-1. To those who had Detroit -3 and saw that bet go down the drain and through the outstretched hands of D’Andre Swift, my condolences to you. Shoutout to Randy Bullock for missing a game-tying field goal and leading to a push of Chargers -3.
In Week 2, I’ve got my eye on several totals this week. You can find those at the bottom in our Pick Six bets. But let’s run through all the games and see what we have to work with.
Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns (-6), O/U 43.5
In shocking news, the Browns kicked their season off in disappointing fashion once again, losing to the Baltimore Ravens 38-6. The Bengals gave the Chargers a run for their money late, but failed to tie the game late as Randy Bullock missed what would have been the game-tying field goal from 31 yards out.
In a short week, against a rookie quarterback in his second NFL game, I would like to lean with the Browns to win by a touchdown. But Cleveland looks to be much of the same as last year, and has a secondary that is decimated by injuries right now. Joe Burrow has Joe Mixon, A.J. Green, and Tyler Boyd to help take advantage of a weakened Cleveland defense. Would it really be that surprising to see the Browns lose to a rookie quarterback in his second career game? I will go with the Bengals +6 here, but this is a low-confidence pick on this spread.
The real value here for me is in the under, however. Joe Burrow averaged only 5.4 yards per attempt against the Chargers on Sunday. To go along with that, the Browns aren’t exactly a high-octane offense either, averaging just 20.9 points per game in 2019, and scoring a measly six points in Week 1. Two middling offenses on a short week? Hammer the under.
The Picks: Bengals +6 / Under 43.5
Jacksonville Jaguars at Tennessee Titans (-9), O/U 42
The Jags were the shock of Week 1, upsetting the Colts 27-20 at home. With Tennessee squeaking by Denver on Monday night, this would appear to be a larger spread than would be expected for these two teams coming off their respective Week 1 wins.
Context is important when picking against the spread here. Tennessee would have had more comfortable win on the road against the Broncos if Stephen Gostkowski hadn’t missed three field goals and one extra point. Jacksonville benefitted from two Philip Rivers picks and picked on the questionable Indy secondary all game long.
Can Gardner Minshew keep his team in this game, facing a defensive line featuring Jeffery Simmons and Jadeveon Clowney?
Expect the Titans to control the game on the ground and limit Minshew Magic on Sunday.
The Picks: Titans -9 / Over 42
New York Giants at Chicago Bears (-5.5), O/U 42.5
Jones was left scrambling for his life all night long versus the Steelers front-seven, and figures to have issues with pass protection against the Bears too.
Working in the Giants’ favor is the weak Chicago run defense they will be facing on Sunday, which should help them get their best player, Saquon Barkley, going. The Bears gave up 138 yards to the Lions ground game in Week 1.
New York can keep this one close, as long as it gets a better performance from its running game, and I don’t trust Mitchell Trubisky still.
The Picks: Giants +5.5 / Over 42.5
Atlanta Falcons at Dallas Cowboys (-4.5), O/U 53
This game has P-O-I-N-T-S written all over it. The Cowboys are in a big bounceback spot coming off of a disappointing Week 1 loss to the Rams. The Falcons lost to the Seahawks in a barnburning 38-25 game. Both teams will be motivated to avoid an 0-2 start to the season.
The Cowboys are dealing with a long injury list, with starting tight end Blake Jarwin suffering a torn ACL against the Rams, and starting linebacker Leighton Vander Esch. The Falcons opened as +7 underdogs, but have dropped to +4.5 at most books with the injury news coming out for Dallas.
I think Dallas wins this one at home, but Atlanta has the offense to keep this close, and will be aided by a shorthanded Dallas defense.
The Picks: Falcons +4.5 / Over 53
Denver Broncos at Pittsburgh Steelers (-7.5), O/U 41.5
Injuries are starting to pile up for Denver, with A.J. Bouye dislocating his shoulder on Monday night against Tennessee, and Denver’s top corner will likely miss this game as a result.
With both teams operating on short weeks, and Courtland Sutton still out for Denver, take the veteran Steelers, at home. I would wait and see if you could get this spread at the key number of 7, and would pounce if you can find that number, in Pittsburgh’s favor.
The Picks: Steelers -7.5 / Over 41.5
Minnesota Vikings at Indianapolis Colts (-3), O/U 48
The Colts had one of the more disappointing performances in Week 1, suffering a 27-20 upset on the road against the Jaguars. Philip Rivers had a classic Phil Rivers game, throwing 46 times, and completing 36 of those attempts for 363 yards, one touchdown, and two interceptions. The Vikings represent another defense ripe to be thrown on, having given up 364 yards and four touchdowns to Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in Week 1.
While the Colts should be able to score on the Minnesota defense, the question is what the Minnesota defense can do against the Indy defense. The Colts’ secondary was an issue against Jacksonville, allowing Gardner Minshew to complete 19 of 20 pass attempts and throw for three touchdowns.
This game screams over, but the spread is a bit tougher to suss out. I’ll roll with the team that lost to a better team in Week 1, and who has a more stable quarterback and the better running game.
The Picks: Vikings +3 / Over 48
Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-9.5), O/U 48.5
How this isn’t at least a 10-point spread is beyond me. The Buccaneers, with a new QB manning the ship, lost to the best team in the NFC who happens to have a top-5 defense in the NFL. Don’t overreact too much to the Bucs’ struggles in Week 1.
Facing a Carolina team that gave up 34 points to the Raiders, the Bucs should be able to score at ease. However, two complicating factors to monitor before placing any money on this game is the statuses of Chris Godwin (concussion) and Mike Evans (hamstring). If one or both of those players are out, I would give pause to betting this spread.
Fun fact, per NFL Network’s James Palmer: Tom Brady in his career in Week 2 after a Week 1 loss is 3-0 with seven touchdown passes, zero interceptions, a completion percentage of 71.2%, and a passer rating of 117.9.
The Picks: Bucs -9.5 / Over 48.5
Buffalo Bills (-5.5) at Miami Dolphins, O/U 41
The Bills take on an AFC East foe for the second week in a row, after defeating the hapless New York Jets 27-17 in Week 1.
The going won’t get any easier for Miami QB Ryan Fitzpatrick after dealing with New England’s defense in Week 1, and now having to take on an even tougher Buffalo defense. With Devante Parker out for Miami, it’s hard to see how the hosts will put up points against the Bills.
Buffalo has the running game to take advantage of Miami on the ground, and if Josh Allen can keep the mistakes to a minimum, Buffalo will cover this game.
The Picks: Bills -5.5 / Under 41
San Francisco 49ers (-7) at New York Jets, O/U 42.5
Were it not for injuries on both sides of the ball for the 49ers, this spread would likely be over 10 points. The Jets look to be headed towards the bottom of the leaderboard in the NFL, and their Week 1 performance against the Bills did nothing to inspire confidence that they can flip the script and surprise the 49ers in Week 2.
Tread carefully if you choose to place money on the Niners laying a touchdown here. The visitors will be without Deebo Samuel, their #1 wide receiver, and potentially George Kittle, who is only the best tight end in the NFL. On defense, the Niners will now be without #1 cornerback Richard Sherman, who was placed on IR on Wednesday.
With both teams looking to avoid an 0-2 start to the season, and San Francisco having loftier goals this season, I’ll roll with the team with the better coaching and superior track record, in San Francisco. I will not be betting on this game myself, however.
The Picks: San Francisco -7 / Under 42.5
Los Angeles Rams (-1) at Philadelphia Eagles, O/U 45.5
This spread started out with the Eagles as 3.5-point favorites, which was particularly head-scratching considering Philly being upset by Washington in Week 1, and the Rams beating the Cowboys. That number was quickly blown up, and is now more accurate, with the Rams now listed as 1-point favorites.
Miles Sanders and Lane Johnson will be back for the Eagles in this game, which should aid their cause. But the team still will have trouble dealing with All-Pro defensive tackle Aaron Donald in the middle, and Carson Wentz struggles mightily under duress.
The LA offense looked like it did in 2017 and 2018 in Week 1, playing with tempo and attacking the Dallas defense on the ground and in the air alike. Philadelphia folded late against Washington’s offense in Week 1, which doesn’t inspire confidence that they will fare any better against the Rams in Week 2.
The Pick: Rams -1 / Over 45.5
Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers (-6), O/U 49.5
The Lions are going to come in pissed off when they come play the Packers in Lambeau on Sunday, after choking against Trubisky and the Bears. The Packers offense looked great against a sub-par Vikings defense in Week 1, and will now be facing a Lions defense that allowed 400.4 yards per game in 2019.
This is a tough game to handicap. The Lions have gone 6-0 ATS in the last six games against the Packers, but the favorite is 12-4 ATS in the last 16 matchups. The perceptions of these teams couldn’t be more different, with Green Bay beating up a poor pass defense and Detroit choking late in a game that saw them with a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter before they collapsed. This should be a fun game with a lot of points, and fun games tend to be closer than the spread would indicate. However, with Kenny Golladay not practicing for Detroit still as of Wednesday, and the Lions dealing with injuries to cornerbacks Jeff Okudah and Darryl Roberts, it feels to risky taking them against the spread here.
The Picks: Packers -6 / Over 49.5
Washington Football Team at Arizona Cardinals (-6.5), O/U 46.5
If you had told me in March that a Week 2 matchup between the Washington Football Team and the Arizona Cardinals would be one of the best matchups of the weekend, I would have laughed in your face. But alas, this game between two teams that had two of the best wins from Week 1— Washington over Philadelphia, and Arizona over San Francisco— is one to watch on Sunday.
Washington’s front seven is one of the best defensive units in the NFL, as they proved in Week 1, sacking Carson Wentz eight times. The Cardinals offense counters with an explosive passing attack, but the question is, will Kyler Murray have enough time to find his receivers downfield?
I believe the Washington pass rush can keep this game close, and harass Murray enough to slow the Arizona offense down. I’ll take the WFT (Boy, that sounds weird) to cover on the road.
The Picks: WFT +6.5 / Over 46.5
Baltimore Ravens (-7) at Houston Texans, O/U 52
The poor Houston Texans, having to face the top two teams in the AFC from last year to kick off their 2020 season. The going won’t get any easier against Lamar Jackson and the Ravens, who dispatched of the Browns with ease, 38-6.
This one should be a similar result to Houston’s Week 1 loss to KC, and the Ravens should be able to control this game from start to finish.
The Picks: Ravens -7 / Under 52
Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5) at Los Angeles Chargers, O/U 47.5
Don’t overthink this one. The Chargers squeaked by a below-average Bengals team in Week 1, while the Chiefs will come in on 9 days of rest, and ready to run circles around the Chargers. The Chiefs are 14-5-1 ATS over their last 20 games. Ride them again against a Tyrod Taylor-led Chargers offense.
In terms of the total, Kansas City was able to get out to an early lead against Houston and rely on the legs of Clyde Edwards-Helaire to stay in the driver’s seat throughout the rest of the game. Against an inferior Chargers team, expect much of the same. The Chiefs only needed 202 yards of passing to beat Houston, and should operate on a similar script against Los Angeles.
Kansas City’s defense looked good against Houston in Week 1, and will be facing a Chargers offense that averaged 5.1 yards per play against the Bengals and scored just one touchdown.
The Picks: Chiefs -8.5 / Under 47.5
New England Patriots at Seattle Seahawks (-4), O/U 45
The NFL’s Week 2 Sunday Night Football matchup features two top-5 teams in DVOA, according to Football Outsiders, with New England ranked second in overall DVOA and Seattle fourth.
This is a tough game to predict. Despite New England’s offense now having tape for opponents to scout, there is still an element of the unknown with the Patriots. Seattle, meanwhile, did in fact #LetRussCook in Week 1 against the Falcons, and will give the New England defense plenty to prepare for as well.
With no fans in the stands, Seattle’s massive homefield advantage is drastically reduced. I give the edge to Seattle to win straight-up, but think this will be a back-and-forth battle on Sunday night. If New England can turn over Seattle like they did against Miami, they will win this game.
The Picks: Patriots +4 / Over 45
New Orleans Saints (-6) at Las Vegas Raiders, O/U 50.5
The Raiders are coming off a high-scoring 34-30 win against the Panthers in Week 1, but have a tough test in Week 2, as they welcome the Saints in what will be the Raiders’ first game in their brand new stadium.
The Saints’ defense is leaps and bounds better than Carolina’s however, and even with Michael Thomas out, should have the firepower to put up enough points against Las Vegas to cover the spread as road favorites.
The Picks: Saint -6 / Under 50.5
Week 2 Pick Six Bets
- Bengals/Browns Under 43.5
- Lions/Packers Over 49.5
- Saints -6
- Ravens/Texans Under 52
- Vikings/Colts Over 48
- Ravens -7