Week 2 Sunday preview #NFL

Week 2 of the season is tough, we’ve one data point and it’s important to try and remember what you thought about the teams before you watched them last week. Are the Packers really that good? Are the Jets THAT bad? Did a Trubisky comeback make him a decent QB?

General rule of thumb is to take the 0-1 team against a 1-0 team, there’s a few of those matchups today worth having a look at.

Apologies for the lateness and incompletion of this, family got in the way.

Falcons +3.5 @ Cowboys: 53.5

The Falcons got hammered by Russell Wilson last week as the Seahawks finally let him lose earlier than the fourth quarter, the Falcons D allowed 38 points while the Cowboys were favourites on the road at the Rams and lost a close one due to fuck ups and some might say, dodgy calls.

This is the highest total of the week for good reason, the Falcons always put up yards on offense, Matt Ryan threw for the most yards in week 1, 450, with 3 of his receivers catching 9 apiece. That’s an average week for Julio who had 157 of the teams yards and as always missed out of scoring. For some reason he’s just never found in the endzone. Calvin Ridley got 2 TDs though, Ridley and Russell Gage had 5 of the 8 redzone targets from Matt Ryan, Julio just the one, and strangely Ito Smith caught both of his red zone targets. I’d expect Hayden Hurst to have more of the ball this week, the Seahawks (mainly Jamal Adams) shut down the middle of the park pretty well.

Todd Gurley found the endzone from the one on the third time of asking in a decent debut averaging 4 YPC from his 14 carries. I honestly never considered Ito Smith doing anything in any game, but those red zone targets confuse me a little but 9/1 still isn’t a bet for me.

The Cowboys are much better at home and they’ve got the offensive talent to score on anyone especially a poor Falcons defense. A lot of people had them high up their list on teams for the Superbowl this year and last week will have hurt them. Aaron Donald fucked up the middle of their offensive line where they’ve had injuries and I’m quite sceptical of Dak when he doesn’t have his usually brilliant protection in front of him.

Dak is going to be the highest paid man in the league next year as the Cowboys have ballsed up his situation, personally I don’t think he’s worth it, but he’s better than anything they’ll be able to get in. The O-Line issue are still there this week but the Falcons aren’t really a team capable of getting any pressure.

Zeke scored 1 on the ground and 1 through the air last week with his 130-odd yards as he was used in both areas of the game. He’s still one of the best in the league and a key component in this team.

Amari Cooper is usually hit and miss and usually better at home so I guess I’ve got to expect him to do better than his 81 yards from 10 receptions last week. CeeDee Lamb seems to have a decent debut with 5 for 59 yards, he was probably the most exciting rookie in the draft this year and Michael Gallup is probably the best WR3 in the league if that is now his role. Unfortunately #AlwaysJarwin didn’t last long as Blake did his ACL last week and is now out for the season, Dalton Schultz will replace him in the lineup.

The Cowboys lost Leighton Vander-esch last week with a broken collarbone, he’s a big loss in the middle of the field for them

This total has been rising all week, both teams are good on offense, poor on defense so I get it.

  • Total – lean over, but probably too late for it now
  • Spread – lean to the Cowboys covering, no bet for me

Bills -5.5 @ Dolphins: 42

Another AFC basement team for the Bills after they easily saw off the Jets last weekend while the Dolphins got hit by the return of Cam Newton in New England.

The Bills did what was needed despite Josh Allen giving the ball away a few times on scrambles, many seem to think he’s the weak link in this team, this was essentially pre-season for him though and they let him air it out as he had his first 300 yard game, still a lot of mistakes of course, he air-mailed many a player including Dawson Knox wide open in the endzone. He also had 14 rush attempts and a touchdown.

They added Stefon Diggs for him and while he didn’t score he did haul in 8 of his 9 targets to lead the team in yards, John Brown led the team in targets though finishing with 6 for 70 and a TD while rookie Zack Moss got the other receiving score for them, surprisingly Cole Beasley had the longest reception on the team though he’s usually the short yardage man. Knox is the TE there now.

Singletary and Moss shared carries in the backfield although neither were very effective against a decent Jets run defense, 9 for 30 for Singletary and 9 for 11 yards for Moss. Not good.

They do have one of the best defenses in the league though and they’ll probably have a good game against a Ryan Fitzpatrick led Dolphins team who are probably without Devante Parker.

Fitzy (he went to Harvard) threw 3 interceptions and zero TDs last week against the Pats, one of them was at the end of the game and they are still a decent defense, so I guess you can use that as an excuse for him, but this is typically Fitz, when he’s good he’s good, when he’s bad it’s very bad.

Surprisingly Myles Gaskin led the team on the ground with 9 for 40 yards, after signing Jordan Howard and Matt Breida it was assumed they would get the majority of the carries, Howard had 8 carries for 7 yards… but somehow fell in from a yard. Breida 5 for 22.

Parker still led the team despite missing time, with Williams getting the most targets. Williams formed a good partnership with Fitz before injury last year and I think he can blame rustiness for only catching 2 of his 7. Mike Gesicki is well priced at 4/1 still, he’ll play most of the game in the slot for them I’d imagine. Although taking anyone against this Bills D is a risk.

They weren’t bad on defense as you’d hope after spending a pretty penny on that side of the ball in free agency.

  • The total is low for a reason, Dolphins won’t score much and have a decent defense
  • Bills should cover the spread

Panthers +8 @ Buccaneers: 47

The Panthers looked pretty good on offense last week but predictably poor on D with all the new guys they’ve got back there. Teddy B can actually throw downfield, he looked good. Oh no, the Buccs lost. With Brady, it’s probably been a while since he threw 2 INTs in a game, (23/12/18 against the Bills) the pick 6 was definitely his fault, the other one probably was.

The Panthers lost a close one after giving the ball to their full back instead of Christian McCaffrey who looked as good as ever in the opener. 26 touches, 2 TDs and 130 odd yards for him. The Buccs were pretty good at slowing him down last year giving him his two worst games of the year with 37 and 31 yards, he did of course still score twice against them.

As expected by most DJ Moore led the team in targets but the connection didn’t quite seem there between them yet, Curtis Samuel was involved a lot but didn’t manage to break one but it was new signing Robby Anderson who led the team mainly thanks to a big breakaway score which accounted for 75 of his 114 yards and their one receiving score.

The Buccs will be without Chris Godwin who it seems suffered a concussion at some point so more will be on Mike Evans this week who is obviously a pretty good main man although a case could be made that he was at fault for one of the INTs last week. Scotty Miller (5 for 73 last week) moves up and Justin Watson, I guess as WR3. The crowded TE room seems to have been led by OJ Howard rather than Gronk but that may change week to week.

Ronald Jones led the backfield with 17 carries and 2 receptions with Fournette carrying 5 times for 5 yards. He may well get more carries at some point this season but for now I’ve got to assume Rojo will get the majority of it all again in this one.

They’ve got a very good defense, especially in run-stopping which will be the key tonight, slow down McCaffrey.

  • Lean to the unders
  • Lean Bucs covering the spread

Broncos +6.5 @ Steelers: 40.5

Two of the better defenses in the league facing off here, both of them played on Monday. The Broncos were lucky to lose by such a small amount on Monday after Gostkowski for the Titans left 10 points on the field. The Steelers are now apparently Superbowl favourites after beating a poor Giants team. Joy.

Honestly haven’t got a lot to say on either of these teams, I didn’t watch the games and basically just going through the box score. The Broncos lost Philip Lindsay to a toe injury and it looks like he’ll miss this one, so more for Gordon I’d imagine and they’ll bring in Royce Freeman as well. Apparently Jerry Jeudy looked up to all the hype on him being the best route runner in the draft, people are very impressed with him and Noah Fant seems to have had a big game, he looks like a great player in this team.

So Big Ben is back, looked good and they won at the weekend, the hype was slowly building and is already getting too much for me. James Conner went out injured so they loaded up on Benny Snell who’d had good reports in camp and ran for 113 from 19 carries. Diontae Johnson led the team in targets, while Juju got the scores for them, and of course Chase Claypool is amazingly brilliant after one game. Eric Ebron was expected to be a redzone threat apparently he was taking defensive attention away from receivers so didn’t get a whole lot of touches.

Steelers held Saquon Barkley to a hilarious 6 yards from 15 carries. Good luck Melvin.

  • It’s a low total for a reason. Lean unders
  • SB LV Favourites the Steelers cover the spread.

Lions +6 @ Packers: 50

The Lions threw away a big lead allowing Mitchell Trubisky of all people to win the game for the Bears, they still should have won with D’Andre Swift dropping a pass most of us would have made with the final play while the Packers took advantage of a probably terrible Vikings defense and could have put up 50 on them.

This will probably be the early game I’m watching with no Bengals game on this weekend. I liked the Lions in pre-season and they looked pretty good for most of the game last week before going conservative to try and hold their lead. They won’t be able to do that tonight and I’m expecting more of a back and forth affair even without Kenny Golladay again.

Marvin Jones, Danny Amendola and rookie Quintez Cephus did fairly well last week and TJ Hockenson got a TD, we might not want to get too carried away with that after what he did in week one last year. Marvin Jones is the man you want to aim for really, he should have a good game as the one if you think the game-flow will be similar to last week and they might be chasing the game.

Good night Kerryon Johnson. They really don’t like him. They brought in Adrian Peterson and a week later he’s leading the team in carries and yards and even had a few catches and when they needed a change up they brought in D’Andre Swift who should have finished with 2 scores. He’ll be a week healthier and I’d imagine we rarely see Johnson in this one.

It is not a good defense.

So I called out the “Aaron Rodgers is on a mission this year because his team haven’t given him any help” narrative saying it was bullshit. Well… he might not be on a mission but he was pretty good last week after pussying out of a TD run. He smashed the hell out of them in the end as the O-Line kept him untouched throwing for 364 and 4 TDs and it should have been more as MVS dropped a few, as always.

Davante Adams had 14 receptions, 156 yards and 2 scores. There were thoughts he could lead the league in everything and that’s why, he’s very good and he’s the only man Rodgers properly trusts. MVS caught a bomb TD and Allan Lazard mixed in as well.

The run game was still mainly Aaron Jones who got himself a score, but Jamaal Williams, AJ Dillon and Tyler Ervin all got carries as well. Ervin a big price still.

  • I’m going over
  • and I’m taking the Lions to cover – They’ve covered 4 of 5 in GB

Jaguars +7.5 @ Titans: 44

The Jags pulled off the biggest win of week 1 while the Titans had to travel to Denver for a late Monday win.

Gardner Minshew completed 19 of 20 passes last week and I might have to re-evaluate my opinion of him. Sure he’s popular because of his unique style but it seems he might actually be able to play as well, although broken coverage played a big part in most of those TDs.

They leaned on rookie James Robinson in the run game, he was good in pre-season and seems like he’s the man, 16 carries for 62, not the most efficient but he got the 2 RZ runs as well. Chris Thompson was expected to be in on third downs and he may well be if they trail by too much.

The TDs were spread around the offense, DJ Chark only had 25 yards but a score, Keelan Cole found himself alone in the endzone and Laviska Shenault showed the YAC ability taking the ball home as well.

The Titans carried on where they left off, when Henry gets 25+ touches they win, and with 31 carries on Monday he definitely topped that line finishing with 116 yards on the ground and not looking gassed.

Somehow Corey Davis went over 100 yards, something I can’t imagine he’s done too much in his career, he was the main man and may well get even more attention this week with AJ Brown ruled out. Adam Humphries will need to step up and Kalif Raymond might be worth a look at probably a big price. Two of the three tight ends scored last week, Jonnu Smith and Mycole Pruitt finding the endzone while Firkser finished with a couple of catches. He’s one I’m always looking for anytime.

  • Nothing on the total.
  • The spread opened 11 points. I think over a TD is still too high. Lean Jags

Rams +1.5 @ Eagles: 45.5

Aaron Donald led the Rams to a win against the Cowboys in week one, he was dominant against a poor offensive line and he’ll get that same benefit this week with the Eagles hit with injuries in that area. The Eagles gave away at 17 point lead to lose by 10 as the Washington team sacked Wentz 8 times in a dominant performance.

Malcolm Brown was the main back for the Rams, scoring twice but McVay has said he’ll continue with a mixture of players back there and it will be a hot-hand approach. I’d expect Brown gets the benefit of the doubt after last weeks performance but he’s a risky play.

The passing game was as expected really Woods, Kupp and Higbee in that order of yardage. Woods is one of the more under-rated receivers in the league, he still didn’t score and that’s something he’ll want to change. Josh Reynolds and Van Jefferson mixed the WR3 work, Jefferson getting more than Reynolds.

Wentz looked all right for the first half then they lost two offensive linemen during the game and it really showed. But he’s got to learn to get rid of the ball and not take some big sacks.

They didn’t give Desean Jackson many flags and have said it wasn’t injury related, Jalen Reagor caught one bomb for 55 yards which got people interested, but that was it, Greg Ward did it in the slot while Dallas Goedert led the team in receptions and yards after Ertz got a knock, he and Ertz both found the endzone.

This opened Eagles -3, has been bet down.

  • Lean overs
  • Lean Rams

Vikings +3 @ Colts: 49

The Vikings got spanked by the Packers, the Colts lost a game they should have won against Jacksonville.

Kirk Cousins put up a lot of garbage time yards to finish with 260 and 2 TDs, both thrown to Adam Thielen. The main question for them on offense was how Thielen would do as the main man without Diggs there, apparently fairly well, he got open easily at the end of the game for the scores, but it was too late by then. Outside of him Bisi Johnson had 4 targets as the second most targeted player and they used RB Alexander Mattison a fair bit too, might have been because he was trailing. Not a whole lot to note in the passing game.

As they were trailing the running game didn’t put up any numbers, although Dalvin Cook did run in two scores as part of his 12 carries for 50 yards.

Philip Rivers will get the blame for their loss, he always does, and he did throw a couple of interceptions on his 46 attempts, but had 363 yards and a TD. As expected a lot of those completions were less than 20 yards down the field, a lot to his RBs, Hines and Taylor, also Mack before he tore his achilles. (they accounted for 17 of his receptions in fact) – Parris Campbell looked good as well, he plays in the slot so fits that area as well. TY Hilton had two big drops towards the end of the game which killed drives.

Jack Doyle is out so my man Mo Alie-Cox becomes the de facto one, the bookies know it though and his prices are terrible. 24.5 his receiving line is low and a little tempting though.

I’m all over Jonathan Taylor this week, he’s set at 57.5 rush yards, 16.5 receiving yards and should beat both those lines, he and Cook are both even money to score so I’ll probably take Both players to score on skybet.

I think this will be a high scoring affair.

  • Over the total
  • Colts cover the spread

Giants +5.5 @ Bears: 42

The Giants lost to the Steelers but there were some good points on offense for them as they put together some long drives which stalled out, Daniel Jones apparently looked pretty good. The Bears were outplayed for 3 quarters before putting up 21 points in the 4th to snatch a win in Detroit.

Saquon Barkley had the second worst yardage for someone with 15 carries in NFL history, constantly getting hit in the backfield, it was a painful night for him and they face Hicks and Mack in this one. The weird thing is he’s not ever that far away from those figures but he usually has a big breakaway run of two which change his games.

Darius Slayton finished as the leading receiver for them with 2 TDs and 102 yards on 6 receptions, he was a prime bestball signing as he usually has nothing or 2 TDs. Barkley did at least have 61 through the air, Sterling Shepard caught all 6 of his targets with Golden Tate out, he’s questionable again for this one and Evan Engram will be looking for a bounceback game in this one.

Mitchell Trubisky didn’t look good for a lot of their game but showed some good touch on the 3 TD passes at the end of that game he’ll be hoping to carry that momentum against a poor secondary and little pass rush.

Anthony Miller led the team in yards and got a TD, Allen Robinson is arguing for a contract extension and probably won’t be too amused at Tarik Cohen getting a $5.25m per year deal sorted out before he gets paid. He’s the best WR on the team obviously. Jimmy Graham scored a TD and was half a yard from another one somehow. The ball was spread around well by the Bears.

Tarik Cohen actually got more carries than expected finishing with 7 for 41 yards with Montgomery finishing with 64 yards on the ground. I think it’s largely gameplay dependent and I think the Giants will score tonight so it might be similar again.

  • 42 is low, I think i’d lean overs here.
  • Giants pull off the upset, they might win outright.

49ers -7 @ Jets: 41.5

The 49ers lost their opener to the Cardinals in a smokey San Francisco, the Jets were humped by the Bills.

They’re dead Dave. Everyone is dead Dave.

Injuries on both sides of this one, the 49ers are far more prepared to deal with them than the Jets. They’re without Dee Ford, Kittle, Deebo, Richard Sherman, some key players on both sides of the ball but they’ve still got far too much to lose to the Jets in this one. They’ll run the ball a lot and Tevin Coleman should be more involved after not a whole lot last week due to his sickle cell trait and the smoke in California. Raheem Mostert again made the most of it with a big run off a reception and most of the carries. Jerrick McKinnon found the endzone in his first game for the team after years of injuries.

They’re without George Kittle with a knee sprain so that’s one less person to catch the ball, Jordan Reed will fill in for him with Ross Dwelley behind him, I’d assume Kendrick Bourne and Trent Taylor will get a fair few looks in the slot, Brandon Aiyuk looks like he’ll be playing as well and should add some excitement.

The Jets are lining up with Perriman, Hogan and Braxton Berrios as their receivers. So Chris Herndon should be loaded up with targets tonight.

Frank Gore leads their rushing corps with Josh Adams and er… Kalen Ballage behind him.

That’s more than enough talk about them.

This is going to be a terrible game. 49ers should cover by scoring 10 points, but it’s a long trip across the country.

  • Under. Under on Jets team total
  • 49ers should cover but I’m not touching it

Washington +7 @ Cardinals: 46.5

Both of these teams won as big underdogs, Washington with the fewest yards of offense came back against the Eagles and the Cardinals took care of the 49ers.

The Washington defensive line was touted as being good and it proved it against a beaten up Eagles offensive line. They got 8 sacks, Chase Young starting his career with 1.5. They did what was needed on offense, didn’t give the ball away and made the few plays they needed with good field position each time. Peyton Barber got the TDs on the ground for them but didn’t look great.

The passing game wasn’t great, 178 yards from 17 receptions, unsurprisingly Terry McLaurin the main man there, Steven Sims picking up some big yardage on his catches and Logan Thomas the tight end finding the end zone. They’ll want to get Antonio Gibson more involved this week.

Kyler Murray has never had a receiver like Deandre Hopkins. He targeted him often last week as he finished with 14 (of Kylers 28) receptions for 151 yards and probably a TD, but it got called back and Kenyan Drake ran it in. Chase Edmonds scored and Kyler scrambled for 91 yards to lead the backfield in yardage. He’ll likley be scrambling a lot tonight and I think that will help them avoid the pass rush.

I’d imagine both the run game and receiving game will be similar to last week although you’ve got to think they’ll move the ball around more than they did last week with Kirk and Fitz getting more of it, and of course Dan Arnold the TE.

  • Lean to the over
  • Cardinals to cover.

Ravens -7 @ Texans: 49

Ravens win, Ravens cover. – Nothing on total.

Marquise Brown o49.5 rec. yards

Chiefs -8.5 @ Chargers: 47.5

Chiefs win, Chiefs cover. Lean on Chargers team total under

Patriots +4 @ Seahawks: 44.5

Seahawks win and cover. Over the total


Summary

Spreads;

  • Colts -3
  • Ravens -7
  • Giants +5.5

Totals;

  • Colts v Vikings over 49
  • Lions v Packers over 50
  • Pats v Seahawks over 44.5

Player props;

  • Calvin Ridley o4.5 receptions – 1.65 (WillHill) – 5 point stake.
  • Marquise Brown o48.5 receiving yards – 1.91 (Ladbrokes)
  • Jonathan Taylor o16.5 receiving yards1.83 (365)
  • D’Andre Swift o18.5 receiving yards – 1.95 (WillHlil)

TD Scorers;

  • Dalvin Cook – 2.00 (Skybet)
  • Cook and Taylor both to score – 4.33 (Skybet)
  • James Robinson – 2.00 (365)
  • Anthony Firkser – 10/1 (365)

Oh, I like both the Skybet boosts too and will be backing both

I’ll leave it at that, it’s been a messy morning for me and my head isn’t in it right now.

I’ll try and update the other games on here, but time is an issue.


If you want to sort some props yourself, we’redoing a weekly Player prop comparison sheet – more info at nflprops.bet

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