Last week was a tough one for our picks, as we went 6-9-1 against the spread in the first weekend of NFL football. Let’s see if we can improve on that this weekend.
Take a look below at our best bets against the spread for Week 2 of the NFL season (* indicates home team).
Cleveland Browns* (-6) over Cincinnati Bengals
This feels like a must-win for the Browns after their dismal performance against the Ravens on Sunday.
Baker Mayfield has a lot to prove, as does Odell Beckham Jr., whose 10 targets on Sunday turned into just three receptions. Losing to Joe Burrow and the upstart Bengals to start the year 0-2 in the division seems unacceptable for a team with this much offensive talent.
Los Angeles Rams (+1) over Philadelphia Eagles*
The Philadelphia Eagles are dealing with a slew of injuries to their offensive line, and it was evident in Week 1 when they gave up eight sacks to Washington. With Aaron Donald and the Rams defensive front coming to Philadelphia this week, it’s tough to see how things get better.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers* (-9) over Carolina Panthers
Tom Brady’s first game with the Buccaneers didn’t go as planned, as Tampa Bay lost convincingly to the Saints 34-23. I don’t see him losing twice to start this new chapter of his career.
The Panthers defense just gave up 34 points to the Raiders, and the Buccaneers should be able to do at least as much damage to their young defense.
Denver Broncos (+7) over Pittsburgh Steelers
Drew Lock and the Denver Broncos were close to saving a win in their season opener against the Titans, but a few costly drops and some questionable coaching wound up leaving them losers late in the fourth.
This weekend, I’m betting they clean things up a bit, and though the Steelers were able to take care of business against the Giants last weekend, Ben Roethlisberger’s arm still has some questions left to answer.
Dallas Cowboys* (-4.5) over Atlanta Falcons
The Dallas Cowboys are better than their performance on Sunday night against the Rams. Last weekend, the Falcons defense let the Seahawks run all over them, and I expect Dak Prescott and the Cowboys to do the same.
San Francisco 49ers (-6.5) over New York Jets*
There’s a lot about this line that makes it looks like a trap game. The 49ers are on the road, traveling West to East, and are too heavily favored for a team that came out flat-footed in Week 1 and could be suffering from a Super Bowl hangover year.
I have my concerns, but I think the Jets are flat out bad. So betting more against them than on the Niners.
Buffalo Bills (-5.5) over Miami Dolphins*
The Bills are on a mission to win the AFC East this year. To do that, they need to take care of business in divisional games. They handled the Jets with ease last weekend, and I expect more of the same this Sunday in Miami.
Minnesota Vikings (+3) over Indianapolis Colts*
These teams lost confusing games last week, so this one would likely be a stay away for me if I didn’t have to pick every game on the schedule. Since I do, let’s back the Vikings and hope Phillip Rivers has another late interception coming on Sunday.
Green Bay Packers* (-6) over Detroit Lions
Aaron Rodgers is playing like a man on a mission, with a near-perfect game on Sunday against the Vikings. If the Lions are letting Mitch Trubisky run them for three touchdowns in the fourth quarter, Rodgers should have no trouble taking care of them.
New York Giants (+5.5) over Chicago Bears*
Saquon Barkley was held to a paltry six yards against the Steelers defense, but he’s too good to stay down for long. Plus, if Mitch Trubisky is listed as a near touchdown favorite, I’m going to go the other way almost every time.
Jacksonville Jaguars (+8.5) over Tennessee Titans*
I doubted the Jaguars and paid dearly for it. No more. If Gardner Minshew is going to complete 95% of his passes this year as he did in Week 1, this scrappy Jacksonville team will find a few upsets over the next few months.
Arizona Cardinals* (-6.5) over Washington Football Team
Kyler Murray and the Cardinals are one of the can’t-miss teams of the 2020 season. While Washington’s comeback against the Eagles last weekend was impressive, I don’t expect this game to be close.
Houston Texans* (+7) over Baltimore Ravens
Hoston has the toughest opening two weeks of any team in recent memory, starting their season against the Chiefs and Ravens back to back. While the Chiefs beat them fairly soundly on Thursday, the Texans will have a few extra days rest on their opponents as they face off against Baltimore this weekend.
Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5) over Los Angeles Chargers*
Last week I bet against the Chiefs because it felt like they were laying too many points to the Texans. That bet was a loser, and I’m tired of losing bets by thinking the Chiefs won’t score a million points. They always score a million points.
New England Patriots (+4) over Seattle Seahawks*
Bill Belichick told reporters Russell Wilson might be the best player in the NFL, and he may be right. But all that means is the Patriots won’t be underestimating the Seahawks this Sunday.
Las Vegas Raiders* (+5.5) over New Orleans Saints
Fans or no fans, the Raiders will not lose their first game in Las Vegas without a fight. The Saints looked strong on every side of the ball against the Buccaneers last week, but Drew Brees was pretty average until a few nice plays in the second half.