One week of the NFL season is in the books, and I could have sworn going into Monday Nights games with an 8-6 record vs. the spread I would come out with a winning week. Low and behold neither were blowouts, and I’m 8-8. I’ve always believed that the NFL is nearly impossible to win bets on a consistent basis. I guess it’s that way for pretty much any other sport too, unless you count the NBA in a Donaghy officiated game. As our blog mate (cali4dre) eloquently put on his post “Even the biggest underdog can rise up and play inspired football on any given week”. I felt good come out of the week going 5-2 on my confidence picks of 4 or 5. I’m glad to see the NFL back, and hopefully this is a good season! Anyways, here are my picks for week 2. It’s the same rules from last week as I will pick the winner, the home teams are in CAPS, and I will also give a confidence rating from 1-5 on how I feel about the pick.
Oakland (+3) Over KANSAS CITY
4, we live blogged the Raiders Monday Night game, and as a fan of the Raiders I have to say I was extremely satisfied with their efforts. There were so many question marks coming into the game, and unlike last year they showed up! Jamarcus will need to get past the, I hope this pass goes close to that wide open receiver, phase if they are going to ever get better. Kansas City played Baltimore tough, but if McGahee ran all over them, and I think McFadden and Bush will surely break off some big runs. Hopefully this can give Russell fewer opportunities to make mistakes aka wild throws. Oakland won in KC Week 2 last year, so I’m taking the points!
TENNESSEE Over (-6.5) Houston
2, this is a tough one for me, as I have a very hard time believing in Kerry Collins. I remember watching the post game interview after they lost Thursday, and he looked more dazed that Chong. He continually kept saying uhhh over and over in the interview. Pretty classic Collins. On the same notion I’ve always liked Jeff Fischer. Houston was disappointing at home against the Jets, and their offense will probably struggle more as they face a defense that brings even more pressure than New York. I’ll take my chances with the Titans at home!
New England (-3.5) Over NEW YORK JETS
5, Brady looked really rusty in the first half, but found a way to shake it off. I think this might be the game he breaks out in putting up the numbers that made him an MVP. Even last week in true lame Patriot form the ball rolled their way with a fumble, and all of a sudden they turned into 2007 Patriot mode. Is there any luckier franchise over the last decade getting those breaks?
The Jets, Mark Sanchez, looked very good in his debut. It had to have helped that Thomas Jones had a big day on the ground keeping some of that rookie QB pressure off Sanchez’s shoulders. I think Sanchez is going to need more than a running game and his Mexican Flag mouthpiece to take this one.
GREEN BAY Over (-9) Cincinnati
3, I don’t have much on this one, except I’m pretty confident that this will be won by the Packers in a major way at Lambeau Field. I’m always a believer that a team that is supposed to be a dynamic offense won’t struggle two weeks in a row, buy you can always count on the Bengals for the unexpected! If the Bengals can’t put up points against one of the worst defenses in the NFL (Denver) then how are they going to do against a pretty good looking defense? That’s what I thought…
Minnesota Over (-9.5) Over DETROIT
5, As much as I hate to take a road team at over two scores I have to do it. Detroit is the worst franchise in professional sports, and even a divisional rivalry game isn’t enough to sway me on this one. The way the Saints marched all over the Lions should show signs that the Vikings should be doing the same. I would go back to the Monday Night games to re-think this one, but Detroit doesn’t have nearly enough talented players in this underdog story. On a side note, AP is on pace for 2,880 yards rushing with 48 TDs! I think he might even increase those projected numbers this weekend.
New Orleans (+1.5) Over PHILADELPHIA
3, With McNabb’s injury sounding like he’s probably going to be out, I’m forced to take New Orleans at this point in the week, even if it is in Philly. I actually think I might have picked the Saints either way with or without McNabb. The Saints weren’t all that consistent last year, but I think having a healthy roster is already making a difference. And seriously if you had to pick between Kolb vs. Brees you have to put your money on Drew!
Carolina (+6.5) Over ATLANTA
2, I really don’t know what to expect with this one. Carolina played about as bad as you can last weekend, but they are a pretty good team. Atlanta on the other hand played okay, but showed some weak spots as they only had one drive longer than 50 yards. I think this one will be tight, so I’ll take the points.
WASHINGTON Over (-9.5) St. Louis
3, I was watching the Skins and Giants game when the Santanna Moss and Corey Webster scuffle broke out, and it made me smile. I think that was the moment I really felt like football was back! I can’t say I really liked the way the Redskins played, but they are going to play a terrible team in the Rams. The Rams seem to go backwards on offense, as they’ve racked up more penalties than the Raiders lately. Ten points is a lot to ask from the Redskins, especially since I think they might not take the Rams seriously enough, but in the end probably their second squad could probably cover ten…
JACKSONVILLE (-3) Over Arizona.
1, This game feels like a trap. I think Arizona might be pissed after their loss to SF, but do Jesus freaks like Kurt Warner even get pissed? I didn’t think so either, so I’ll have to take the Jaguars at home in this one. As you can see this is the first 1 confidence rating I’ve ever given, so to sum it up I really don’t care about this game.
SAN FRANCISCO (-1.5) Over Seattle
5, I really like this game. Seattle turned it over three times in the first quarter against the RAMS, with no consequence. They were at home, and failed to put up 50 which they could have against their horrendous D. I don’t think they can turn the ball over that much against anyone as good as the 49ers or a team at home. I’m not sold on everyone liking Seattle, because beating up the Rams is like giving up your spot in the drink line at the bar to a dude, it just doesn’t happen. I still wonder how much Crabtree could have helped SF out…
Tampa Bay (+4.5) Over BUFFALO
3, Can a team survive when their teammates house is being vandalized for losing the game? Can a team that blew a double digit lead on a short week come in fired up? My prognosis is, doubtful. They need a healthy Marshawn to soften up those coverages to get Evans and Owens some more looks. Tampa played decent against a good Cowboys squad. I think they could take this one from a flat Buffalo team. It’s my bold pick of the week.
DENVER (-3) Over Cleveland
2, This game has boring written all over it, and I don’t like to bet on bad teams. Even though the Broncos squeaked out a win, I feel like Josh McDaniels is coaching for his job already, and we’re only in week 2! I think he will deliver a win in their friendly confides of Mile High. Cleveland can’t even decide who they should have at QB as it took them until just before the season to pick between Anderson and Quinn. I almost thought they were going to change at the end of their game last week.
SAN DIEGO (-3) Over Baltimore
2, Not that I thought SD looked good last weekend against the Raiders. They seemed to sleep walk the same way the Patriots did through most of their game. I think their home opener will be a win especially with the Ravens not taking it to Kansas City more. With Rivers temper is hotter than Derrick Jeter’s press coverage in New York, I hope we see Ray Lewis get into his head in this one!
Pittsburgh (-3) Over CHICAGO
1, Giving Da Bears three points in a home game. If there’s one thing we saw in their game against the Packers is that they still have a good defense. Another thing we saw was that Cutler might be missing something, like his receivers! One plus is Cutler won’t be having to scan the field with Polomalu roaming. I wouldn’t pick this game if I didn’t have to!
New York Giants (+3) Over DALLAS
3, New York wasn’t flashy last weekend, but they did show they could be very efficient. Their defense looks great with Osi in there again. I didn’t see any of Dallas and Tampa game, so that’s all I’ll say…
Indianapolis (-3) Over MIAMI
4, I don’t mind that Indy’s not the home team. They usually don’t let bettors down two weeks in a row. They will correct those drive ending problems they ran into last week, and put Flipper into submission. Has anyone else noticed there aren’t as many Peyton Manning commercials lately? I’m so happy that the networks got the hint! I mean he had a couple good ones, but how much does anyone want to see his face that much.