NFL Week 2 Lines & Predictions: Free NFL Betting Picks

Through Sunday of Week 1 of the NFL season, we’ve had seven one-score contests and plenty of other nail-biters. Aaron Rodgers had one of the best quarterback performances on the week with 364 yards, 4 touchdowns, and no interceptions. Davante Adams benefited as he had 14 catches for 156 yards (the second-most among receivers in Week 1). Matt Ryan also put up some monstrous numbers – a week-leading 450 passing yards on an unreal 54 passing attempts. We have only had one 100-yard rusher in Week 1 so far – Clyde Edwards-Helaire with 138 yards on Thursday Night Football – but Josh Jacobs stole the show on Sunday with just under 150 yards from scrimmage and 3 touchdowns. He finished with 35.9 PPR fantasy points on the afternoon.

In Week 2, the oddsmakers are predicting the games to be a bit more one-sided with nine different games having a team favored by six or more points. The biggest favorite on the slate as of now is the Titans at -11 against the Jaguars, but that should change following Tennessee’s Monday Night Football game against the Broncos. Jacksonville was one of the biggest surprise teams in Week 1 as Gardner Minshew became the first quarterback in NFL history to complete 95% of their passes in a game (minimum 20 attempts) and he also threw for three touchdowns. The closest game on the docket this week is projected to be the Vikings Colts matchup in which the Colts are favored by 3 points at home. Both of these teams have playoff and even Super Bowl aspirations this season, but both suffered a disappointing Week 1 divisional loss and will be looking for a bounceback performance in Week 2.

It feels amazing to have football back and we have another exhilarating slate of games to break down here. Let’s dive in.

My Week 1 record: 7-9 straight up, 10-6 ATS, 8-8 O/U

Thursday Night Football

(0-1) Cincinnati Bengals @ (0-1) Cleveland Brownscleveland brownscincinnati bengals

TV Info: 9/17/20, 8:20 PM EST, NFL Network

Joe Burrow had a tough start to his career as his Bengals hosted a Chargers defense that features one of the best secondaries in the NFL. Burrow had just 193 passing yards on 23/36 passing with 0 touchdowns and 1 interception. His raw numbers weren’t impressive, but Burrow kept his team in this game and drove them down the field to attempt the game-tying field goal, one that Randy Bullock ultimately missed. The Browns offered no resistance to Lamar Jackson in Week 1 as he completed 20 of 25 passes for 275 yards and 3 touchdowns. Jackson also had 45 rushing yards in Week 1 which bodes well for Burrow who had a surprising 19 carries for 69 yards in Week 1. The Browns had a couple of notable absences in the secondary, including Greedy Williams and Kevin Johnson, neither of whom are a sure thing to play in this one given the short week. Cleveland got walloped by 32 points by the Ravens and at no point had any kind of a consistent offensive attack. I still have confidence in Kevin Stefanski, but I don’t trust Baker Mayfield or his passing weapons right now after he threw for under 200 yards in Week 1 despite a positive passing game script. The Bengals fared better defensively against the Chargers than I expected and they should have the positive momentum heading into this matchup despite a close loss in Week 1. Both of these teams have some major holes across the board, but I like what I saw from Burrow in Week 1 and I would go with Cincy in a close one this week. I love the Bengals against the spread this week and would consider putting a half a unit on their Moneyline as well.

Matchup to watch: Joe Burrow (Bengals quarterback) vs Browns’ weakened passing defense

Odds: Browns -7, O/U 45.5

My prediction: Bengals win 23-20, Bengals cover, under 45.5 points

Sunday Football

(0-1) Atlanta Falcons @ (0-1) Dallas Cowboysdallas cowboysatlanta falcons

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, FOX

Both the Falcons and Cowboys suffered a disappointing Week 1 defeat to a team from the NFC West. The Cowboys were one of my locks of the week, but they lost by 3 points to the Rams as they put up just 3 points in the entire second half of the contest. Despite the new head coach in Mike McCarthy, this was yet another one-score loss by the Cowboys. I have to chalk the lack of offensive production up to rust or something of the sort for Dak Prescott as there’s no other explanation for his performance given the weapons at his disposal. The Falcons allowed Russell Wilson to complete 31 of 35 passes and throw for 322 yards and 4 touchdowns with no turnovers. Needless to say, Prescott should be in for a massive bounce-back week. The Cowboys’ defense was pretty solid in this game, but I still expect Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, and Calvin Ridley to find plenty of room to produce this week. While backed intensely by garbage time, Ryan and his top two wideouts made the Falcons the highest-scoring fantasy offense in Week 1. I like both offenses in this game, as Prescott is one of the only quarterbacks who can rival Ryan’s wideouts – the Cowboys have Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, and CeeDee Lamb. I’m expecting major improvement across the board for the Cowboys’ offense, but I don’t project the same for the Falcons’ defense. Their secondary is going to be a problem area all season. This is the type of game where one or two stops decide the outcome, and while Atlanta has perhaps the more potent offense, I trust Dallas to make the necessary defensive plays to win this game.

Matchup to watch: Amari Cooper/Michael Gallup/CeeDee Lamb (Cowboys wide receivers) vs AJ Terrell/Isaiah Oliver (Falcons cornerbacks)

Odds: Cowboys -6.5, O/U 50.5

My prediction: Cowboys win 28-24, Falcons cover, over 50.5 points

(1-0) Buffalo Bills @ (0-1) Miami Dolphinsmiami dolphinsbuffalo bills

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, CBS

The Bills were absolutely dominant in the first half of their matchup with the Jets in Week 1 – if Josh Allen hadn’t fumbled it twice in the first half, the Bills could have led by as much as 35-0 at halftime. Even still, their 18-point advantage was enough to allow them to take their foot off the gas in the second half. There were flashes of brilliance for Josh Allen in this game as he continues to unleash his downfield passing and the addition of Stefon Diggs during the offseason is obviously going to be a huge difference-maker for him. The Dolphins let me down in Week 1 as I had them pegged as an ATS upset team, but Ryan Fitzpatrick had three interceptions as their offense struggled against the Patriots’ defense. The Bills have a very similar team makeup to the Patriots between their three-level defensive strength, a mobile quarterback with a cannon, and risk-averse coaching styles. However, the Bills’ defense could be even better than the Patriots’ this season and I don’t see the Dolphins winning the turnover battle in this contest. This Miami team is much-improved and I love Brian Flores, but this Bills squad is a well-oiled machine set to run through weaker opponents like the Dolphins. This game could end up one of the lower-scoring affairs on the week after the two teams combined for just 38 points in Week 1, and as long as the O/U is in the low 40s I would consider putting some action there.

Matchup to watch: Josh Allen vs Dolphins’ defense that gave up 75 rushing yards, 2 touchdowns to Cam Newton in Week 1

Odds: Bills -3.5, O/U 42.5

My predictions: Bills win 23-13, Bills cover, under 42.5 points

(0-1) Carolina Panthers @ (0-1) Tampa Bay Buccaneerstampa bay buccaneerscarolina panthers

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, FOX

Both of these teams suffered Week 1 defeats, but the Buccaneers are obviously in a much better spot as the season goes on. Without a true training camp or any preseason games, it was always going to take time for Tom Brady to get adjusted to his new offensive weapons and coaching, and I’m still very high on this offense moving forward despite the tough Week 1 outcome. Chris Godwin was held to just 6 catches for 79 yards and Mike Evans had just one two-yard touchdown catch in garbage time. A matchup with the Panthers could be just what the doctor ordered, though, as Carolina is coming off a game in which they allowed the Raiders and Derek Carr to compile 372 total yards of offense. The Buccaneers are going to be fun to watch throughout the season as their offense develops and comes together, and this could be a great stepping stone toward establishing their identity. The Panthers have some intriguing offensive players, headlined by Christian McCaffrey of course, and they are capable of scoring points in this matchup. However, I’m anticipating this being a relatively easy victory for the Bucs and a much-needed offensive bounce-back against a porous defense. These two teams were involved in two of the higher-scoring games in Week 1 and I expect this to be one of the higher-scoring games of Week 2.

Matchup to watch: Bucs’ offensive line (allowed 7 QB hits and 3 sacks) vs Panthers’ young defensive line

Odds: Buccaneers -8.5, O/U 48.5

My predictions: Buccaneers win 31-21, Buccaneers cover, over 48.5 points

(0-1) Denver Broncos @ (1-0) Pittsburgh Steelerspittsburgh steelersdenver broncos

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, CBS

The Steelers came out a bit rusty to start Week 1 as Ben Roethlisberger took some time to re-adjust after missing all but two games last season. However, JuJu Smith-Schuster looked exceptional as he finished with. 6 catches for 69 yards and two touchdowns. Diontae Johnson and James Washington were relatively quiet, but they have big-play ability as Big Ben gets more comfortable. The Broncos’ pass defense looked good for most of the game against the Titans, but the loss of A.J. Bouye for the next couple of weeks is a significant one. I don’t expect Denver to have the secondary personnel to match up with the Steelers’ pass-catchers and if Roethlisberger can heat up at home in Week 2, the Steelers’ passing offense could be very productive. Their run game is a bit of a question mark at the moment as James Conner is questionable for this week, but Benny Snell looked great in relief in Week 1 and the team has plenty of talented backups in the backfield. The Broncos are going to have a tough time generating offense against a stout Steelers’ defense and I didn’t love the team’s play-calling for much of their game in Week 1. Denver was lucky to be in the game against Tennessee as Stephen Gostkowski had a howler of a performance for the ages, but I don’t expect the same luck to continue. The Broncos could have Courtland Sutton back this week, which would be a significant bump for the passing game along with Jerry Jeudy and Noah Fant, but this is a tough matchup for Drew Lock. As the line drifts up to the Steelers being favored by more than a touchdown, I would take the Broncos to cover the spread as this should be a slow, close game.

Matchup to watch: Drew Lock and Broncos’ receivers vs the Steelers’ secondary

Odds: Steelers -7, O/U 43

My predictions: Steelers win 20-16, Broncos cover, under 43 points

(0-1) Detroit Lions @ (1-0) Green Bay Packersgreen bay packersdetroit lions

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, FOX

I had the Lions pegged for sneaky playoff potential this season and for three quarters on Sunday that looked like a strong take. That is until the Bears scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to storm back and win the game. The Lions looked like the better team for much of the afternoon and I was impressed in what I saw of their reworked defense as they had allowed just 212 total yards prior to the fourth-quarter explosion from the Bears. Aaron Rodgers presents an entirely different challenge to Mitch Trubisky, especially with the Packers’ passer rolling like he is right now. Rodgers will look to carry momentum into another divisional matchup after he torched the Vikings’ passing defense. I believe Matthew Stafford and the offense can produce in this game, especially with Kenny Golladay expected to be back in the lineup. However, if Rodgers repeats his stellar performance from Week 1, the Packers will surely win at Lambeau. After both of these teams were involved in surprisingly high-scoring games in Week 1, I can see this being another stellar offensive outing. The Lions are going to be underrated by the betting public after some misleading Week 1 results, and I expect Detroit to bounce back, at least against the spread.

Matchup to watch: Kenny Golladay (Lions’ wide receiver) vs Jaire Alexander (Packers’ cornerback)

Odds: Packers -6, O/U 46

My predictions: Packers win 26-23, Lions cover, over 46 points

(1-0) Jacksonville Jaguars @ (1-0) Tennessee Titanstennessee titansjacksonville jaguars

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, CBS

The Jaguars earned a surprising Week 1 victory over the Colts as Gardner Minshew lit the field on fire in a historically great performance. Jacksonville has some sneaky-good pass-catching talent headlined by D.J. Chark and backed by a very deep group overall. Rookie cornerback C.J. Henderson was stellar in Week 1 and the Jags have some solid defensive line talent between K’Lavon Chaisson, Josh Allen, and Abry Jones. The story for the Jaguars is going to continue to be the mass exodus of talent over the past couple of years, but this team is much more talented than most think. The Titans were solid in Week 1 as Stephen Gostkowski’s comedy of errors masked what was a promising performance from the team overall. A.J. Brown is going to have a tough time against the Jags’ Henderson, but Derrick Henry should have much more room to run against Jacksonville than he did against Denver. However, the Titans’ secondary is in a rough spot right now after the injury to Adoree Jackson, and I expect Minshew to be able to sling against them. Between my lack of trust in the Titans’ kicking and my belief that the talent gap between these teams is not that large, I’m taking the Jags against the spread here.

Matchup to watch: Gardner Minshew vs Titans’ cornerbacks (without Adoree Jackson)

Odds: Titans -9, O/U 43

My predictions: Titans win 28-24, Jaguars cover, over 43 points scored

(1-0) Los Angeles Rams @ (0-1) Philadelphia Eaglesphiladelphia eagles

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, FOX

The Eagles suffered a disappointing Week 1 loss to Washington and while the Football Team has to be commended for their strong defensive effort (8 sacks in the game), the Eagles have plenty of their own questions to answer after scoring zero points in the second half against the team that allowed the sixth-most points per game last season. Carson Wentz was hit or miss in this game and he didn’t show any real chemistry with his receivers as he finished with a 57% completion rate. The Rams, meanwhile, are coming off a defensive performance in which they kept what should be a stellar passing offense largely in check. With Aaron Donald, Jalen Ramsey, and Leonard Floyd, the Rams have one of the better star defensive trios in the NFL and plenty of lesser-known players came through in a big way in Week 1. This game likely comes down to health as the Eagles are currently dealing with injuries to two crucial offensive players in offensive tackle Lane Johnson and running back Miles Sanders. Offensive guard Brandon Brooks is also out for the season. Without two of its best players in Johnson and Brooks, the Eagles’ offensive line is suddenly very shaky, and they could have a terrible time trying to block Aaron Donald this week. The Rams have continuity, chemistry, and consistency on offense with Jared Goff, Robert Woods, and Cooper Kupp. I also give the Rams the slight coaching edge with Sean McVay vs Doug Pederson. All of this is leading to me picking the Rams to follow up their impressive Week 1 win with another victory over a playoff hopeful.

Matchup to watch: Eagles’ offensive line vs Aaron Donald and other Rams’ pass rushers

Odds: Eagles -3, O/U 48.5

My predictions: Rams win 24-21, Rams cover, under 48.5 points

(0-1) Minnesota Vikings @ (0-1) Indianapolis Coltsindianpolis coltsminnesota vikings

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, CBS

The Vikings and Colts are both coming off a disappointing Week 1 loss to a divisional rival and will be looking to bounce back in Week 2. The Colts’ pass defense was surprisingly bad in Week 1 – they allowed Gardner Minshew to complete 19 of 20 passes and throw for 3 touchdowns to 0 interceptions. That would seemingly spell trouble for them in Week 2 against a Kirk Cousins – Adam Thielen combination that connected for over 100 yards and 2 touchdowns. However, much of Thielen’s production came when the Vikings found themselves trailing by a significant amount and I doubt he would have had the same opportunity had the game been close. The Vikings will need to establish Dalvin Cook early on in this game, and the Colts had a very good run defense a year ago. The Colts should also be able to take advantage of a weak Vikings’ secondary with T.Y. Hilton and Michael Pittman having the potential for big weeks. Marlon Mack may have suffered a torn Achilles on Sunday, which would leave Jonathan Taylor as the clear-cut workhorse in this offense. I still believe in the Colts as one of the most talented rosters top-to-bottom in the NFL and I was out on the Vikings prior to the season. I’ll stick with those same thoughts here as I don’t want to be overly susceptible to recency bias. Both of these teams are very capable of scoring on each other’s shaky secondaries and I think this is a high-scoring game in Week 2.

Matchup to watch: T.Y. Hilton vs Vikings’ cornerbacks and Adam Thielen vs Colts’ cornerbacks

Odds: Colts -3, O/U 47.5

My predictions: Colts win 27-23, Colts cover, over 47.5 points

(0-1) New York Giants @ (1-0) Chicago BearsChicago Bearsnew york giants

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, FOX

The Giants kept their game against the Steelers surprisingly close in Week 1 as a number of things went in their favor. The free agency additions to the defense of James Bradberry and Blake Martinez looked far better than I expected them to. The offensive line that I thought looked incredibly shaky only allowed the Steelers 3 sacks – fewer than I expected. Daniel Jones also looked way better than I expected him to against a stout Steelers’ defense as he connected with Darius Slayton for two touchdowns. I was entirely unconvinced by the Bears in Week 1 as they were dominated for most of the contest against the Lions before three passing touchdowns late in the second half by Mitch Trubisky. I don’t buy that Trubisky has suddenly become some heroic leader at quarterback and a lot of the team’s stats from Week 1 were unsustainable like the Lions having 77 yards of penalties and still outgaining the Bears by a solid margin or the Bears having zero turnovers. However, the Bears’ defense is scary and suddenly has an elite cornerback duo in Kyle Fuller and Jaylon Johnson, one of my favorite rookies. I don’t believe either of these teams is very good, but I was more impressed with what I saw from the Giants in Week 1 against a tough, likely playoff-bound opponent. The only thing giving me pause is that the Bears will have had one extra day to prepare for this game and will be playing at home, but I’m going with the Giants in a Week 2 upset against the spread.

Matchup to watch: Daniel Jones and Giants’ receivers vs Kyle Fuller and Jaylon Johnson (Bears’ cornerbacks)

Odds: Bears -5.5, O/U 43

My predictions: Bears win 24-21, Giants cover, over 43 points

(0-1) San Francisco 49ers @ (0-1) New York Jetsnew york jetssan francisco 49ers

TV Info: 9/20/20, 1:00 PM EST, CBS

After a full slate of Week 1 games, it’s the natural tendency of football fans to overreact to what they saw most recently. However, it’s important not to get caught up in recency bias with the 49ers as they still have one of the most talented defenses in the NFL and are coming off a gritty loss to a tough division rival. That by no means indicates that the Jets have any chance of keeping a game against the reigning NFC Champions close. The Jets could have lost by much, much more than they ended up losing by this week and their complete lack of offensive production for the vast majority of the game is concerning for their long-term prospects. The Jets’ offensive line is still one of the worst in the NFL which means Nick Bosa, Dee Ford, Arik Armstead, and Javon Kinlaw should have a field day. This could be the most lopsided game of Week 1 and with a 49ers spread of less than a touchdown, they’re my lock of the week. This should be a lower-scoring game as well as I just don’t see how the Jets extend too far past 10 points against this defense.

Matchup to watch: Jets’ offensive line vs 49ers’ defensive front seven

Odds: 49ers -6, O/U 43.5

My predictions: 49ers win 30-10, 49ers cover, under 43.5 points

(1-0) Washington Football Team @ (1-0) Arizona Cardinalsarizona cardinalswashington football team

TV Info: 9/20/20, 4:05 PM EST, FOX

Both of these teams earned an exciting Week 1 victory against a divisional rival who was heavily favored – the Eagles for Washington and the 49ers for Arizona. The Washington front seven was one of the most fascinating units to watch on Sunday and their defense is much better than most expected prior to this season. However, with the way Kyler Murray dominated against a stout front seven in San Francisco, it may not matter. Murray’s mobility and ability to create extra time for his receivers with his legs allow him to beat any pass rush. Washington’s offense was subpar in Week 1, despite their 27 points scored, as they had just 18 first downs and 239 total yards. Their +3 differential in the turnover column helped them win the game, but that’s a fluky stat week to week. Dwayne Haskins looked awful in Week 1 and I’m not expecting a much better performance against a Cardinals’ defense that is one of the fastest-rising units in football. The Cardinals are a playoff team this season, I’ve been saying it all summer, and I don’t see how Washington keeps this thing close given their offensive personnel.

Matchup to watch: Kyler Murray vs Washington front seven (8 sacks in Week 1)

Odds: Cardinals -6.5, O/U 46

My prediction: Cardinals win 27-14, Cardinals cover, under 46 points

(1-0) Baltimore Ravens @ (0-1) Houston Texanshouston texansbaltimore ravens

TV Info: 9/20/20, 4:25 PM EST, CBS

The Ravens looked like the same team as last year on Sunday when they blew out the Browns 38-6. The Texans, meanwhile, are coming off an embarrassing opening-game defeat to the Chiefs in which they just never seemed to find an offensive rhythm. With Deshaun Watson at the helm, Houston is never rudderless, but they are a team in desperate need of a WR1. Baltimore, meanwhile, is rolling and should dominate a Texans’ run defense that allowed Clyde Edwards-Helaire to rush for 138 yards in his rookie debut. The Houston front seven took a major step back after losing defensive tackle D.J. Reader, although J.J. Watt and Bernardrick McKinney are still solid. Lamar Jackson should have plenty of room to operate against a middle-of-the-pack at best defense and will continue to build on a strong Week 1 performance with a stellar, winning Week 2 outing. This game should be higher-scoring as the Texans, unlike the Browns, are capable of putting up garbage time points in bunches. The Ravens should be riding a comfortable lead throughout most of the contest, however.

Matchup to watch: Lamar Jackson vs Texans’ front seven

Odds: Ravens -6.5, O/U 53.5

My predictions: Ravens win 37-28, Ravens cover, over 53.5 points

(1-0) Kansas City Chiefs @ (1-0) Los Angeles Chargerskansas city chiefslosangeleschargersnew100X100

TV Info: 9/20/20, 4:25 PM EST, CBS

I can’t for the life of me figure out why the Chiefs aren’t favored by more in this game, but let’s break it down. The Chiefs are coming off an opening win in which they really did look like the best team in the NFL as they shut Houston out of the contest before they even had a chance. The Chargers, meanwhile, are coming off a narrow win over the team that picked first overall in this year’s draft. The Chiefs boast the services of Patrick Mahomes, the reigning Super Bowl MVP, while the Chargers are reliant on Tyrod Taylor. The Chiefs also have a much better and more proven head coach. All this adds up to what should be more than a 7-point line for the Chiefs and I would be happy to grab anything at 6.5 or better this week. The Chiefs are an offensive juggernaut, but given the Chargers’ play style, this game could be lower scoring than expected. The Chargers’ secondary talent can challenge KC in a way few other teams can, but without Derwin James, I’m not sure who’s going to be able to cover Travis Kelce. The Chiefs are going to put up points every week and their pass rush is going to challenge Taylor and the offense. I’m backing the Chiefs at home in a big way here.

Matchup to watch:

Odds: Chiefs -7, O/U 50.5

My predictions: Chiefs win 27-20, Chiefs cover, under 50.5 points

(1-0) New England Patriots @ (1-0) Seattle Seahawksseattle seahawksnew england patriots

TV Info: 9/20/20, 8:20 PM EST, NBC

The Patriots did earn an impressive Week 1 victory, but the Seahawks are another beast entirely. While the Dolphins had little to no answer for the Patriots’ run-heavy attack, the Seahawks can answer with Jamal Adams and Bobby Wagner. While Ryan Fitzpatrick was throwing for 3 interceptions on Sunday, Russell Wilson was coming up with the best quarterback performance on the week. Vegas is going to be riding high on the Patriots after their win over the Dolphins, but the Seahawks are an infinitely better team and the Pats have to travel west this week. With Pete Carroll’s preparation level and potential revenge motive factored in, there just isn’t much in the win column for the Patriots here. Their defense is solid and Bill Belichick is a football robot, but the offense is going to struggle to generate points on the road against this defense. I expect this to be a lower-scoring game and end up close at the end, but the Seahawks should cover the spread.

Matchup to watch: Jamal Adams and Bobby Wagner (Seahawks’ defenders) vs Cam Newton (Patriots’ quarterback)

Odds: Seahawks -3.5, O/U 44.5

My predictions: Seahawks win 20-13, Seahawks cover, under 44.5 points

Monday Night Football

(1-0) New Orleans Saints @ (1-0) Las Vegas Raidersoakland raidersnew orleans saints

TV Info: 9/21/20, 8:15 PM EST, ESPN

The Raiders will be opening up their new stadium in Las Vegas this week, although will be doing so without any fans in attendance, unfortunately. The fans could have been helpful, as well, as the Raiders will have to face one of the scariest teams in football in the Saints. There are some things I like and some things I love about the Raiders, but they just don’t have anywhere near the depth or overall talent of the Saints. Much of their Week 1 performance was due to the awfulness of their opponent’s defense in the Panthers, and I don’t expect them to produce nearly the same way against New Orleans. Derek Carr is going to struggle to push the ball downfield and Josh Jacobs will face a much stiffer challenge against the Saints’ front seven. This defense made Tom Brady look bad in Week 1 – I can’t wait to see what they do against the Raiders in Week 2. However, now that Michael Thomas’s status is seriously in question, I’m a little nervous about the Saints’ ability to produce offense on the road. The Raiders’ defense shouldn’t scare anyone, but Drew Brees was hit-or-miss in Week 1 and could struggle without his star wideout. Ultimately, I’m backing the Saints’ talent to win out here, but there are some red flags that are pushing me towards the Raiders to cover.

Matchup to watch:

Odds: Saints -5.5, O/U 50.5

My predictions: Saints win 28-24, Raiders cover, over 50.5 points

For as long as I've been watching sports, I've been gambling on them too. I used to place $1 bets on several NBA games throughout the week with a buddy in high school with the winner rarely getting more than a few dollars for their trouble. It didn't matter - the rush of landing a winning bet and the ensuing bragging rights were enough. Now I've graduated to full-blown degenerate status, placing copious futures bets for every sport and designing elaborate parlays for maximum payoff. I've experienced my fair share of blown chances but there's no better feeling than using my sports research and knowledge to pull off a win.

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