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NFL Week 2 Predictions and Picks Against the Spread

Posted by in NFL Picks on September 14th, 2010 | Comment »
NFL Week 2 Picks Against the Spread

Very tough week. The home dog factor is messing with my head.

We’re back for our week 2 NFL picks. As many of you have already seen and commented on, we’re bringing on a new contributor to THE PASS RUSH. Brandon and I have teamed up for the last four years to provide weekly NFL and CFB picks against the spread with outstanding analysis. Although we’re expected to post winning percentages close to the 1990’s Chicago Bulls, we’ve still achieved solid success with our picks, but we’re obviously in this game to provide more consistent winners and I believe that the contributions from Joey G and the Kid will help accomplish that. Catch their introduction to the site.

Last week I came out 10-5 straight up and 5-5-3 ATS in the NFL. Not bad, but we need that winning percentage to get above .550. You’ll be able to follow our picks in the Pick ‘Em league. It’s never too late to sign up. League info is on the right above the latest articles.


Obviously everyone is going to say go Ravens after their big MNF win against the Jets and the Bengals embarrassing loss to the Patriots. With 90% of the money pouring in on the Ravens, why is this spread at Bengals +1. Wouldn’t you think that the Bengals should be getting at least 3-4 points in this contest? One thing to consider before jumping the gun on the Ravens is that the Ravens are playing back-to-back road games and are on a short week. Advantage Bengals. Sometimes you have to consider everything that may go wrong before thinking about what can go right.

The Bengals turned up the heat in the second half of that game and I think you’ll be seeing a lot from their offense for the remainder of the season. However, that was after New England was up big and the D started slacking. The Bengals D was extremely disappointing, but they were a very solid unit last year. Keep in mind that the Bengals swept the AFC North last year. They beat the Ravens 17-7 at home and 17-14 on the road. This could be time for the Ravens to get revenge though or for the Bengals to continue their AFC North domination. I’m expecting this one to be decided by a field goal.

9/17 Update: This is a game I have to flip-flop on. I was looking to find reasons to pick Cincy, especially after we learned not to bet against home dogs last week. 2009 was 2009 and 2010 is 2010. I don’t think any weight should be given to the Bengals 2 wins last year. The Bengals CBs Leon Hall and Jonathan Joseph pretty much won those games for the Bengals. Now that the Ravens have receives in Anquan Boldin and T.J. Houshmandzadeh (who can provide the Ravens with some insider info), I think you’ll see the Ravens bounce back. The Ravens front seven is as good as they come and should shut down Benson just like the Pats did. Although the Bengals have the receivers to keep up, I think you see the Ravens come out on top. The Bengals stunk week 1 and they’ll have to show me they can turn it around.

Prediction: Ravens 20 – Bengals 17

Pick Against the Spread: Ravens -1 (Confidence: 1/5)


Just like you have to keep in mind that the Ravens are on the short week, the Vikings have the benefit of 3 extra days of rest, which will be very important for a player like Favre. The Vikings defense was superb, holding the Saints to just 14 points at home. However, the Vikings have a lot of offensive issues with Sydney Rice out. I was disappointed in the Dolphins offense last week or maybe the Bills actually do have a solid defense. The Bills defense had a lot of injuries last year so with a healthy defense, it looks like their D should be in the middle of the pack in the NFL. With the Vikings holding the Saints to a mere 14 on the road, I have to think that the Vikings can hold the Dolphins to 13 points if the Bills defense can hold them to 13 offensive points. This will be back-to-back road games for the Dolphins which will be tough on them and they’ve been long road trips too. However, Coach Sparano is 5-1 ATS on back-to-back road games. Ronnie Brown can have a 3 TD performance any given week too. With a poor outing from the Vikings offense, I’m just not confident in taking them here. Miami has also played well against the run and Adrian Peterson’s yards per carry numbers have been dwindling, especially with Rice out. Considering that I’m not expecting much offensive output from the Vikings offense, Miami stands a good shot at covering. However, with the Vikings at home, where they were dominant last year (5-2-1 ATS), I’m not ready to jump on a Miami just yet. This could also be a hangover game for the Vikings. What I mean by that is the Vikings are so spent from the Saints game, which they believe they should have won, that they come out lazy since they’re underestimating their opponent that barely got past the Bills. Just something to consider.

Prediction: Vikings 20 – Dolphins 17

Pick Against the Spread: Miami +6 (Confidence: 2/5)


Many people were expecting the Cowboys offense to light it up last week, but I warned everyone that this will be a low-scoring affair, which is exactly how the game played out. The under was the clear bet that game. Dallas could have won and covered if it wasn’t for the holding call that negated a TD and Romo was a reh-tard for throwing that screen pass with 0:00 left in the first half which was fumbled and recovered for a Washington TD. Although I picked Dallas, I warned everyone that Washington may cover, so hopefully you averted that game per that advice. With the Cowboys now at home, I’m expecting a much better showing. Dallas is 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games while Chicago is 2-8 ATS in their last 10. I’m not expecting the Bears to score much against this stellar defense. The Bears defense is always tough, which begs the question, how many points can Dallas put up. I think Dallas can manage 24 while holding the Bears to under 14. Should be close with the spread, but I’ll lean Dallas. I would be more confident in Dallas at home, but the bottom line is that the Cowboys offense just isn’t clicking right now.

Prediction: Cowboys 24 – Bears 13

Pick Against the Spread: Dallas -7 (Confidence: 2.5/5)


As everyone well knows, the Eagles are my team so I am forced to advocate them each week. With Stafford out this week, that’s a huge plus for the Eagles. Hopefully Michael Vick gets the start with Kolb suffering from a concussion since Kolb was miserable last game. If Vick played all 4 quarters, I believe the Eagles would have had a shot to win that game. I’m obviously going Eagles here and the public loves this pick. The Lions D was destroyed by Matt Forte last week. With Vick’s running ability and speedy offensive weapons in DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, and LeSean McCoy, I’m expecting the Lions D to give up a ton of points while Shaun Hill doesn’t do much with the Lions offense. I usually abstain from picking Eagles games, but against the Lions, I will definitely take the Eagles here. Lions can’t handle the Eagles D. Let’s just hope Stewart Bradley can play. Kolb can stay out. I want Vick in this game.

Prediction: Eagles 27 – Lions 13

Pick Against the Spread: Eagles -4 (Confidence: 3.5/5)


The Falcons were a great team to bet on last year (11-5 ATS), especially at home where they were 6-2 ATS. Matt Ryan is also 10-2 ATS in the Georgia Dome. The Cardinals were disappointing in their push against the Rams. Just 17 points against the Rams? Come on. They fumbled 7 times and lost 4 of them, which is what hurt them. They were also penalized 10 times. Can you throw the Cardinals into the cliche category of teams “trying to find their identity?” The Falcons, as I expected, lost to the Steelers at home. Although I picked them, I clearly stated, “do not bet on the Falcons due to the Steelers home field advantage.” At home, the Falcons should look like a much better football team. The Cardinals will also likely be without Beanie Wells and Early Doucet.  This one should be close with the spread. I’m expecting Falcons to come out with a win by a TD. Another key factor in the Falcons favor — West coast teams that travel east and play 1:00 games got crushed last year. Advantage Falcons.

Prediction: Falcons 24 – Cardinals 17

Pick Against the Spread: Atlanta -6.5 (Confidence: 3/5)


The Chiefs were impressive last week, but it came on a few lucky plays: a long run, a punt return, and a fumble recover. The Chiefs offense struggled, but you can chalk that up to the rain. I know I picked the Chargers and took them based on their history of demolishing the Chiefs, but with the Chiefs coaching changes and solid draft picks in the last few years, they will be a competitive team this year. If you read what I wrote last week, I was raving about the additions to their defense. Their first-round pick in Eric Berry really completes that defense after the Chiefs bolstered their front seven in past years.  Return man Javier Arenas out of Alabama is also a phenomenal talent who the Chiefs snagged with their 50th pick in this years draft. I was hoping the Eagles could snag him in round 3.  He had a couple great returns. This game will be a story of two similar backs, Jamaal Charles and Jerome Harrison. It should be a huge day for both players if you have them on your fantasy team.

9/17 Update: Although I think the Chiefs have more talent on defense, their offense still stinks, which is why the Browns have a good shot at winning this game. Joey G and The Kid say Browns this week is the “sharp play” and it may be at home, but I don’t see the Browns having much success against their D. The Chiefs held Rivers to a 56.4% completion percentage and Ryan Matthews to a 3.9 YPC average. That’s not too shabby against a very good offense. You can blame that on the rain, but I like the Chiefs front seven and the secondary is now impressive with Brandon Flowers and Eric Berry.

Prediction: Chiefs 17 – Browns 13

Pick Against the Spread: Chiefs -2.5 (Confidence: 1/5)


I’m liking the Packers here. The Packers should at a minimum score 24 and could score as many as 38 on the upper end of that range. However, the Bills defense is healthy and gave the Dolphins problems last week. The Bills just don’t have an offense though, so they will really struggle to get points against a phenomenal Green Bay defense. The Bills had 166 total yards of offense last week — that’s pathetic. Even worse is the fact that they’re supposed to be a running team and got just 50 yards on the ground for 2.9 yards per carry. Miami was able to control the clock that game with almost 37 minutes of possession. The Bills were just 3/14 on 3rd down. Their offense stunk, but their passing D kept them in the game. Their passing D won’t be able to keep them in this one against Aaron Rodgers. Considering that the Bills won’t be able to score more than 10 points in this one and the Packers should put up at least 24, it looks like an easy cover. What could go wrong to screw this one up? A kickoff or punt return, an interception, fumble, or C.J. Spiller getting loose like Jamaal Charles did against the Chiefs. Considering the Spiller had just 6 yards on 7 carries, I’m not worried, especially against this Packers D with A.J. Hawk and Clay Matthews flying around the field. Also keep in mind that the best team ATS in football last year was the Packers (11-4-1). Packers -6.5 can also be easily tossed into any teaser card you may want to deploy this week.

Prediction: Packers 31 – Bills 10

Pick Against the Spread: Packers -13 (Confidence: 4/5)

Notes: Wondering whether Joey G & The Kid thinks this is a sharp bet or a square bet.


With a stellar Steelers run defense, I’m not expecting the Titans to put up 205 rushing yards. Unless the Titans can run the football, they fail to win games. Dennis Dixon had a solid game, but just couldn’t manage to get the offense to score points. He completed nearly 70% of his passes, but couldn’t get the offense going. The Falcons have a very good defense though, as do the Titans. With the under at 37, that may be the play as Pittsburgh topped Tennessee 13-10 last year in September. With a tight game controlled by running and defense, I’ll favor taking the points and the under. I’m not expecting Chris Johnson to break many loose this game, as Pittsburgh held him to just 57 yards on 15 attempts and he had just 2 receptions for 11 yards last year. Steelers will keep it tight. The magic number for me is 13. If the Steelers get 13 points, I think this is a winning ticket as the Titans should be held to under 17. Should being the key word since Chris Johnson may run crazy as he can any week.

Prediction: Titans 17 – Steelers 13

Pick Against the Spread: Steelers +5 (Confidence: 2/5); Under 37 (Confidence: 3/5)

Notes: Teaser of Steelers +12, Under 44 looks like a viable option.


The Panthers were looking good early on in the Giants game before the Giants offense got clicking. The Bucs should be one of the poorer teams in the NFL with a lousy defense and lack of offensive production. With the Panthers at home, this should be an easy win for their team.

Prediction: Panthers 24 – Buccaneers 13

Pick Against the Spread: Panthers -2.5 (Confidence: 3.5/5)


The Raiders got embarrassed last week. I was expecting a better showing from their defense, but you just can’t stop Chris Johnson, you can only home to contain him. I was also expecting more out of Jason Campbell. Maybe we’ll see a betting outing when he’s at home against a poor Rams defense. Campbell only averaged 4.9 yards per passing attempt since he dropped back 37 times. He even got help from Darren McFadden who had 95 rushing yards and 55 receiving yards with a TD. Third-down efficiency was a problem for the Raiders though as they converted just 3/14 third downs.Without 3rd down conversions, you’re going to get shut down and that was the difference in this one. The Rams looked like an improving unit last week, but I’m expecting their road woes to get the best of them this game. I’ll pick the Raiders here, but I’m not going to bet on a lousy team like them.

Prediction: Raiders 23 – Rams 16

Pick Against the Spread: Raiders -4 (Confidence: 2/5)


Oh the Seahawks. Messing up a perfect weekend for me after my first 3 weekend picks go 3-0. Another example of where a team outgains the other in yardage and manages to lose the game. If you saw that the 49ers had 263 yards and the Seahawks had 243 yards, you would think the game would be close, right? Thanks to some turnovers, the outcome in this one was 31-6. An absolutely pathetic showing the from the 49ers, who were 1/15 on 3rd down. Despite what the Seahawks did, it’s still 0-0 at the beginning of this one and my gut is saying take Denver. Although Denver lost last week against the Jags, they didn’t play a bad game. They put up 272 yards passing, but just 89 rushing yards. Seven penalties for 70 yards hurt them and it was ultimately their passing defense that let them down as Garrard had a 138.9 QB rating. Orton was also able to spread the ball around to Brandon Lloyd, Eddie Royal, and Jabar Gaffney. Despite losing Brandon Marshall, the Broncos can still get the job done passing the football since they have a balanced running attack with Knowshon Moreno and Correll Buckhalter. As you might know, the Broncos are a team that I just don’t touch — if I take them, they don’t cover; if I bet against them, they cover. It’s just the way it works with their team. Seattle is 1-8 ATS in their last 9 games. They were the worst road team ATS last season, but they played a ton of good teams on the road. Seattle beat Denver 27-13 in Seattle last September. With Denver allowing Garrard to post a ridiculous QB rating, I don’t see how Hasselbeck doesn’t follow. The Broncos can’t generate pressure with Elvis Dumerville out. In what should be a tight game, I’ll favor taking the points. Broncos usually escape with wins by field goals. I say Broncos win this one by 3. Denver is just 1-11 ATS in their last 12 when favored by 3.5 or more points.

Prediction: Broncos 23 – Seahawks 20

Pick Against the Spread: Seahawks +3.5 (Confidence: 1/5)


Beware of the home dog. This Redskins defense is legit. Brian Orakpo is a complete beast who you can expect to get after Matt Schaub all day. Don’t count on Arian Foster to have a performance like he did last week.  He’ll probably be held to less than 75 yards in this one thanks to an exceptional Redskins front seven.  The Redskins D also has the talent in their secondary to keep Andre Johnson under control. Like I mentioned in my preview of the Dallas game, Washington has had a top 10 defense in the last 5 of 6 years. We didn’t see much from the Redskins offense, but McNabb’s veteran presence was a warm welcome for that franchise. Redskins aren’t an offensive powerhouse, so I’m not expecting more than 20 points from them this game. They’ll likely win most of their games this season with their defense. With the under at 44.5, that may be the play. I don’t see this one going over a 24-20 score.

Prediction: Redskins 20 – Texans 17

Pick Against the Spread: Redskins +3 (Confidence: 2/5); Under 44.5 (Confidence: 3.5/5)


The NFL can be very funny. The Chargers outgained the Chiefs in yardage, 389 yards to 197 yards and lost by a TD. I’m going to chalk up last week’s loss due to the rain. Once the rain set in and the game was tied, there was just no way the Chargers could cover the 5.5. On a dry field, the outcome may have been different. We also learned that you can’t bet against home dogs, especially on Monday Night. I’m expecting the Chargers to win at home, but the Jaguars can be pesky when they’re getting 7+ points. They’re a team I just never like betting on or against, so this game is getting placed firmly in my “pass” category. This is too many points to give up. Definitely not a game I want to touch though. The early money is favoring the Jags and with 8.5, it’s very enticing.

9/17 Update: Like I said initially, I think the Jags have a better shot at covering this one. If this game was played 3 times, I would say the Chargers would win by 9+ points maybe 1 out of 3 times. Although I thought they could come out with a 10-point win, I have a feeling that this one will be a bit closer than most expect.

Prediction: Chargers 24 – Jaguars 17

Pick Against the Spread: Jaguars +8.5 (Confidence: 1/5)


The Patriots looked more like their 2007 version rather than their 2009 version. They absolutely rolled over Bengals. I thought it would be a tighter game since the Bengals D was legit last year, but it was no match for the Pats. Plus, with Randy Moss unhappy with not getting a contact extension and with Wes Welker coming back from an injury, I figured there were some concerns before taking the Patriots. Welker is healthy though and played a phenomenal game. The Patriots also ran the ball with ease whenever they wanted to, even for an old Fred Taylor. Early last season, the Jets stunned the Patriots when they played in New York winning 16-9, but the Pats then brought it when they were at home in November and got them back winning 31-14. With this -1 spread enticing everyone to take it, it just screams “suckers bet” but let’s face facts. Despite how great New York’s defense is, they’re just not getting any help offensively. Mark Sanchez has played poorly, posting a 56.4 QB rating last week. Tom Brady has a knack for always finding the open man. Wes Welker is back and playing amazing. The Patriots D is a top 10 defense and have a tremendous front 7. I just don’t see the Jets winning despite being home for a second straight week. However, crazy things happen in the NFL.

Prediction: Patriots 24 – Jets 13

Pick Against the Spread: Patriots -1 (Confidence: 4/5)

Notes: With the spread so low, is this a “suckers pick”? Hit me up in the comments section below.


The Colts were the NFL’s best home team against the spread last year, posting a 7-1 record ATS. After a disappointing season opener, I expect them to bounce back this game at home. The Giants were looking really good down that stretch and Hakeem Nicks is really turning into a star. Eli Manning threw 3 INTs and the Giants still managed to win 31-18. The Giants stopped the Panthers run and got after the QB, piling up 4 sacks this game and forcing 3 turnovers. The Giants defense really did a great job. The Manning brothers haven’t met since 2006 where the Colts walked into New York and won 26-21 and covered the 3 points. An interesting trend: Giants are 7-1 in their last 8 games on turf, but just 3-9 in their last 12 games overall ATS. Try to figure that one out. Over has also hit 6/8 times in the Colts last eight games. With the over/under at 47.5, I’m trying to see if any teasers are worth taking a shot at. I’m not crazy about taking either team with this spread. Could the Colts with by a TD? Sure. Could they win by a mere 3 or 4 points? Definitely. Could the Giants even come in and pull off the upset? Possibly. I have a feeling that the Colts win this one by 3 or 4. I think the Giants have the offense to keep up with them this game so the Colts lead should never become insurmountable. Keep in mind that the Colts were 7-1 ATS at home though. Very tough call here.

Prediction: Colts 27 – Giants 24

Pick Against the Spread: Giants +5.5 (Confidence: 2/5)

Notes: If this spread moves to Giants +6, a teaser of Giants +13 with the over 40.5 looks appealing.


The 49ers are at home on Monday Night as underdogs. We all know there story there. 49ers get completely embarrassed in their season opener. Come home week 2 to play Monday Night. Vegas wants everyone to take the Saints, so they spot the 49ers just 4.5 rather than 6.5 or 7. Does Vegas win this one? Is this a home dog you want to take after last week’s performance? Everyone and their mother is going to love the Saints this game, so why is the spread just 4.5 points? I’m chalking up last week’s Seahawks win to pure luck. Seattle is a tough place to play. With the 49ers just going 1/15 on 3rd down and them turning the ball over, it was easy for the Seahawks to win. You would have to think that the 49ers are able to fix some of those mistakes this game. This is the Saints though. They should blow out the 49ers, right? Maybe not. The 49ers are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 Monday Night games. Want more interesting trends to screw with your head? New Orleans is 7-1-1 ATS in their last 9 on grass, but 3-9 ATS in their last 12 against the NFC. Try to figure that one out. I guess you can read that to mean that New Orleans hasn’t performed well ATS at home since they usually have to cover double digits, but they manage to play well ATS on the road. With the 49ers 6th ranked D from last year, I expect them to have a better performance this week. Their passing D needs to improve though if they want a shot at covering against the Saints. I want to say take the Saints here, but with what we saw happen with home dogs last week, it’s starting to tell me that “the trend is your friend.”

Prediction: Saints 24 – 49ers 17

Pick Against the Spread: Saints -4.5 (Confidence: 2/5)

Notes: Beware of the home dog on a Monday Night. Rebound game anyone?


Tough week in the NFL this week. Like any week, there aren’t any easy games. With that said, I like the Packers -13 over Bills, Panthers -2.5 over Bucs, Patriots -1 over Jets, Eagles -4 over Lions, and Redskins/Texans Under 44.5. This week also poses opportunities to take points with Giants +5.5, Redskins +3, Jaguars +8.5, Dolphins +6, and Steelers +5 looking like viable candidates. Which games you want to take is totally up to you. This is a tough week friends. Good luck!

Picks are Subject to Change — I may end up flip-flopping on about a half dozen of these pick including the Broncos, Giants, Chargers, Bengals, Redskins, Dolphins, and others.  As you can see, all of those games got confidence ratings of 1/5 or 2/5 since I can go either way.

Which spread is your favorite in week 2?

  • Patriots (-1) over Jets (37%, 73 Votes)
  • Eagles (-4) over Lions (26%, 51 Votes)
  • Packers (-13) over Bills (24%, 47 Votes)
  • Panthers (-2.5) over Bucs (13%, 25 Votes)
  • Other (2%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 200

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