NFL week 2 is here and football is back. Picking NFL games straight up is hard enough, but picking against the spread is even tougher. Here are the NFL week 2 picks against the spread. (Spreads are from ESPN as of Thursday morning)
Last week: 11-5, overall: 11-5
Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Carolina Panthers (-6.5)
Carolina played the Rams tough in the opening week of the season, even with Cam Newton not playing his best game. Tampa Bay, on the other hand, looked really sloppy against the 49ers. On a short week at home, the Panthers should be able to win by at least a touchdown.
San Francisco 49ers at Cincinnati Bengals (-2)
The Bengals looked to have things together as they took the Seahawks to the wire last week. San Francisco had a tough offensive game against the Buccaneers, but the Bengals shouldn’t be bet on as the favorites until they can prove they can win.
Los Angeles Chargers (-2.5) at Detroit Lions
Detroit let Arizona come back for a tie in week 1, displaying some issues. After an emotional game like that where they blew the lead, it will be hard to come back from that. The Chargers will be without Melvin Gordon, Mike Williams, Hunter Henry, Derwin James and more, but they are used to relying on their depth over the last few years with all the injuries they’ve had.
Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers (-3)
Mike Zimmer wanted to run the football more this season and so far it has worked. The Packers wanted a better defense and it looked good in week 1. Because the Packers are at home and Aaron Rodgers will want to bounce back from his lackluster performance, the Packers should cover.
Indianapolis Colts at Tennessee Titans (-3)
Without Andrew Luck, the Colts showed they can compete by taking the Chargers into overtime before losing. The Titans destroyed the Browns in week 1 and look like they’ll be a physical team again. The Titans should be able to stop the Colts by forcing Jacoby Brissett to make tough throws.
New England Patriots (-18.5) at Miami Dolphins
After the Ravens routed the Dolphins in week 1, is this line too low? It is one of the biggest lines that will happen this year, but for good reason. The Dolphins are trying to tank and have all the players wanting out. The Patriots will win easily.
Buffalo Bills (-1.5) at New York Giants
The Bills had a good comeback win over the Jets in week 1. The Giants got a good offensive performance out of Eli Manning. If New York can replicate that performance, they should be able to win at home.
Seattle Seahawks at Pittsburgh Steelers (-4.5)
Both teams struggled in week 1, but the Seahawks were able to get a win over the Bengals. The Steelers always struggle when playing the Patriots on the road, so don’t read too much into that. Pittsburgh will likely get back on track with a win, but it’ll be close.
Dallas Cowboys (-5) at Washington Redskins
Washington got off to a hot start to the season behind Case Keenum, but faded and lost to the Eagles. Dallas defeated the Giants easily in week 1 and look like they have all the pieces to win the NFC East. The Redskins should not pose too much of a problem.
Arizona Cardinals at Baltimore Ravens (-13.5)
Yes, the Ravens did blow out the Dolphins, but that says a lot about Miami. Baltimore should be able to handle Kyler Murray in his first road game, but winning by two touchdowns is a little much. Expect the Cardinals to build off of their late rally against the Lions.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans (-9)
Jacksonville is starting a rookie at quarterback in Gardner Minshew. He did play well in his debut against the Chiefs. He should be able to keep it close with the Texans, who are playing on a short week, if the Jaguars can run the football.
Kansas City Chiefs (-7.0) at Oakland Raiders
The Raiders played well on Monday Night Football, but they were playing the Broncos. This game also leaves them preparing for the Chiefs on a short week. Kansas City will be without Tyreek HIll, but they should be good enough to cover a seven-point spread.
Chicago Bears (-2.5) at Denver Broncos
Chicago’s offense needs to get going and playing against their former defensive coordinator might not be the recipe for success. Still, they should be able to beat a Broncos team that just lost to the Raiders by more than a field goal.
New Orleans Saints at Los Angeles Rams (-2.5)
The rematch of the NFC Championship Game should create some buzz this weekend. While the Saints will want revenge, they’ll be preparing with one fewer day than Los Angeles. The Rams will win at home and cover.
Philadelphia Eagles (-1.5) at Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta struggled on the road against Minnesota, but seemed to get a few things figured out late. Philadelphia needs to run the ball well to continue to be effective. The Falcons should be able to protect their home field.
Cleveland Browns (-6) at New York Jets
How will Cleveland recover from their week 1 loss to the Titans? It will be hard to win many games with the offensive line playing the way they are. The Jets will now be without Sam Darnold, who has mono, so the Browns should be able to cover.