It's not often that New England opens as an underdog, but that's exactly what happened this week. In the early odds for Week 2, the Patriots have opened as a four-point underdog to the Seahawks, which is mostly notable, because it marks just the second time since 2011 that a team has been favored by at least four points over the Patriots. It also marks just the second time since 2016 that the Patriots have been an underdog at all.
Although oddsmakers were almost certainly impressed by Seattle's dominating win over the Falcons on Sunday, one reason why the Seahawks are favored in Week 2 likely has to do with the fact that this game is being played in Seattle, where the Seahawks almost never lose.
Since Pete Carroll was hired in 2010, the Seahawks have been nearly unbeatable at home during the month of September. If you're wondering what qualifies as "nearly unbeatable," here's the answer: They've gone 15-1 straight-up in September home games over the past 10 years and 12-4 ATS. If you only look at prime-time home games played during any month of the season, the Seahawks are 14-1 straight-up and 11-3-1 ATS over the past 10 years. Also, since drafting Russell Wilson in 2012, the Seahawks are 14-2 straight-up against AFC teams (9-7 ATS). Basically, we've got a confluence of every crazy Seahawks gambling trend and they're all coming together for this game.
The one big question is whether or not the Seahawks will lose their home-field advantage due to the fact that there won't be any fans at the game, but that's something we won't know until the game is actually played.
The first NFL Sunday of the 2020 season is in the books and there's a lot to go over. John Breech and Ryan Wilson join host Will Brinson on the Pick Six Podcast to break it all down; listen in the player below and be sure to subscribe for daily NFL goodness.
In other games this week, the Chiefs will try to keep one of the craziest runs in NFL history going. Since 2015, the Chiefs have gone 27-3 straight-up against divisional opponents (21-8-1 ATS), which is notable, because they're playing the Chargers this week.
So who else is favored in Week 2?
Let's get to the early odds and find out .
NFL Week 2 early odds
(All lines from William Hill Sportsbook, all games on Sunday unless noted)
Opening line: Browns, -6.5 points
It's not normally a good idea to bet on the Bengals, but if there is one situation where it's starting to seem safe, it's when they play against the Browns. The Bengals are 9-2 ATS in their past 11 games against the Browns and 8-3 straight up. That being said, this is a prime-time game, and as we all know, the Bengals tend to struggle in prime time. Cincinnati is just 2-8 straight-up in its past 10 prime-time games (5-4-1 ATS), although the Bengals will certainly be hoping that Joe Burrow can change their luck. As for the Browns, this game marks just the seventh time over the past six years that the Browns have been favored by six or more points. In the previous six games, the Browns have done well straight-up (6-0), but not as well ATS (4-2).
Opening line: Bears, -5.5 points
These two teams have met in each of the past two seasons with the Giants going 2-0 ATS in those games (1-1 straight-up). The Bears' win against the Giants came last season, which probably shouldn't have been that surprising when you consider how good the Bears have been against NFC teams at home. Since the start of the 2018 season, the Bears have gone 10-2 straight-up and 9-3 ATS in games against NFC teams played at Soldier Field. That total includes a 19-14 win over the Giants last season. As for the Giants, they haven't been winning on the road, but they have been covering. In their past 15 road games, the Giants have gone an ugly 4-11 straight-up, but a wildly impressive 12-3 ATS.
Falcons (0-1) at Cowboys (0-1)
Opening line: Cowboys, -7 points
If there's one team you should think about betting this week, it's probably the Falcons, and that's because they're nearly unbeatable during the second week of the season. Over the past five years, the Falcons have gone 5-0 both straight-up and ATS in Week 2, and in three of those five years, the win came after the Falcons lost in Week 1 like they did this year. As for the Cowboys, they almost always win when they're favored by a touchdown or more, but they don't always cover. In the past 10 games where Dallas has been favored by at least seven points, the Cowboys have gone 9-1 straight-up, but just 7-3 ATS.
Opening line: Packers, -6 points
If there's one time you don't want to bet against the Packers, it's when they're playing a home game in the month of September. Although the Packers are known for the home-field advantage that the frozen tundra gives them in winter months, it turns out they're actually tougher to beat in the fall. Since 2010, the Packers have gone 16-2-1 straight-up at home in September and 13-6 ATS. As for the Lions, although you might not want to bet on them to win straight-up, you might want to bet on them against the spread, and that's because Detroit has covered in six straight games against the Packers (The Lions are 4-2 straight-up in those games).
Opening line: Titans, -10 points
After watching the Jaguars upset the Colts, it won't be surprising if bettors jump all over Jacksonville this week, but that could be risky, and that's because the Jags tend to struggle against the Titans. Not only has Jacksonville lost six straight games in Nashville (1-5 ATS in those games), but they've lost seven of nine overall to the Titans. This game will mark just the fourth time over the past five years that the Titans have been favored by double digits. In the three previous games, Tennessee has gone 3-0 straight-up, but just 1-2 ATS.
Vikings (0-1) at Colts (0-1)
Opening line: Colts, -3 points
If the Vikings have done one thing well under Mike Zimmer, it's covering the spread against AFC teams. In their past 23 games against the AFC, the Vikings have gone 17-6 ATS. The Vikings have also won eight of their past 11 straight-up against the AFC. As for the Colts, it's not clear what kind of home-field advantage they'll get with no fans, but they do seem to play well at home against the NFC. Since the start of the 2017 season, the Colts are 5-1 both straight-up and ATS at home against the NFC. One thing to keep in mind about the Vikings is that they've never started 0-2 under Zimmer, who's been coaching the team since 2014.
Opening line: Bills, -4 points
Since hiring Sean McDermott as their coach in 2017, the Bills have absolutely dominated this series. Over the past three years, the Bills have gone 5-1 straight-up against the Dolphins and 4-2 ATS. Also, you should probably avoid the Dolphins in this game, if only because betting on them in September has been the same thing as throwing away your money over the past few years. Not only have the Dolphins lost six straight September games, but they've also gone 0-6 ATS in those losses.
Opening line: 49ers, -6.5 points
If the 49ers have one weakness, it's playing teams from the opposite conference. Since the beginning of the 2014 season, the 49ers have gone 2-10 straight-up in road games against AFC teams. This game feels like it should be a blowout for San Francisco, but the thing about the Jets is that they always seem to pull out a few inexplicable wins at home each year. Last season, the Jets went 4-1 as a home underdog with wins over the Cowboys (+7), Raiders (+3.5), Steelers (+3) and Giants (+3). This game is also being played in the Eastern Time Zone, where the 49ers are just 3-5 straight-up under Kyle Shanahan (4-4 ATS).
Opening line: Eagles, -4 points
When it comes to traveling to the Eastern Time Zone, the Rams have had more success recently than almost any other west coast team in the NFL. Since Sean McVay was hired in 2017, the Rams have gone 6-1 both straight-up and ATS in eastern time while averaging 32.5 points per game in those wins. The Rams have also been nearly unbeatable in the month of September under McVay, going 11-2 straight-up and 9-4 ATS. As for the Eagles, they've struggled under Doug Pederson in Week 2. Over the past three years, the Eagles are 0-3 both straight-up and ATS in games played during Week 2. One edge Pederson does have over McVay though is their head-to-head record. The Eagles coach is 2-0 both straight-up and ATS against the Rams coach.
Broncos (0-1) at Steelers (1-0)
Opening line: Steelers, -6.5 points
When the Steelers are a heavy favorite at home, they almost never lose. Since the start of the 2015 season, the Steelers are 13-1 straight-up in home games where they're favored by six or more points. During that same span, they've gone 9-5 ATS in those games. As for the Broncos, they've been a disaster in September over the past few years. Going into Monday's game against the Titans, the Broncos had lost five straight September games and had gone 1-6-1 ATS in their past eight games played during the month.
Panthers (0-1) at Buccaneers (0-1)
Opening line: Buccaneers, -8.5 points
This game is proof of the Tom Brady effect and we know that because it will mark just the SECOND TIME in the past five years that the Buccaneers have been favored by seven points or more. The only other time it happened came in 2017 with the Bucs winning and covering. One thing to consider in this game is that it's never a good idea to bet against Teddy Bridgewater. Not only is the Panthers quarterback 5-1 ATS in his past six starts, but he's also 28-8 ATS In his career, which is the best mark of any quarterback in NFL history. Speaking of quarterbacks, if there's one time you want to bet against Tom Brady, it's in the month of September. Since 2012, Brady's teams have gone 3-10-1 ATS in games that he has started during the first month of the season (10-4 straight-up).
Washington (1-0) at Cardinals (1-0)
Opening line: Cardinals, -7 points
Washington doesn't go out west too often, but when they do, they tend to cover the spread. Over the past 15 years, Washington has gone out west a total of 10 times and in those 10 games, they've gone 6-1-3 ATS, and now, they'll get to play a Cardinals team that hasn't been favored by this many points since 2017. The fact that this game is in Arizona might not mean much and that's because home field hasn't been much of an advantage for the Cardinals. Since the start of the 2018 season, the Cards have gone 3-12-1 straight-up at home (7-9 ATS). During Kyler Murray's rookie year with the team last season, the Cards went just 2-5-1 straight-up at University of Phoenix Stadium.
Chiefs (1-0) at Chargers (0-1)
Opening line: Chiefs, -7 points
Andy Reid coaching against an AFC West team is almost unfair at this point. Since 2015, the Chiefs have gone 27-3 straight-up against divisional opponents and 21-8-1 ATS. The Chiefs have also dominated the Chargers, going 11-1 straight-up in their past 12 games (8-3-1 ATS). The Chiefs have also covered in 10 straight games, including the playoffs, dating back to last season. As for the Chargers, they've been one of the worst bets in football dating back to Week 10 last season. In that span, they've gone 1-5-2 ATS
Opening line: Ravens, -6.5 points
Lamar Jackson is slowly turning into the one of best road quarterbacks in football. Since taking over the starting job in 2018, Jackson and the Ravens have gone 9-2 both straight-up and ATS in road games. It's probably also worth mentioning that Baltimore has won and covered in five straight road games. The Ravens are also 18-2 straight-up in the past 20 games where they've been favored by six or more (11-9 ATS). As for the Texans, they're 2-6 ATS in their past eight home games and they're 1-14 straight-up in their past 15 games where they were an underdog of six or more points (5-10 ATS).
Patriots (1-0) at Seahawks (1-0)
Opening line: Seahawks, -4 points
Since Pete Carroll was hired in 2010, the Seahawks have been nearly unbeatable at home during the month of September. If you're wondering what qualifies as "nearly unbeatable," they've have gone 15-1 straight-up in September home games over the past 10 years and 12-4 ATS. If you only look at prime-time home games (played during any month of the season), the Seahawks are 14-1 straight-up and 11-3-1 ATS over the past 10 years. Since drafting Russell Wilson, the Seahawks are also 14-2 straight-up against AFC teams (9-7 ATS). The biggest upside for the Patriots is that not only will they not have have to deal with the crowd at CenturyLink Field, but Bill Belichick also seems to dominate NFC teams during the regular season. In their past 10 regular season games against the NFC, the Patriots have gone 9-1 straight-up and 8-2 ATS.
Saints (1-0) at Raiders (1-0), Monday
Opening line: Saints, -5.5 points
The Saints don't always seem to cover against AFC teams, but they do seem to beat them. In their past 11 games against the AFC, the Saints are 11-0 straight-up, but just 7-4 ATS. The Saints have also won five straight prime-time games dating back to last season. As for the Raiders, they're 4-8 in their past 12 games against the NFC and an equally ugly 4-7-1 ATS. Since Jon Gruden took over as coach in 2018, the Raiders have gone 4-13 straight-up in games where they were an underdog of five or more points (8-9 ATS). Although this will be the first ever NFL game played in Las Vegas, the Raiders won't be getting much of a home-field advantage, and that's because fans aren't allowed to attend the game. If you're looking for Monday night trends, road favorites are 7-2 ATS in their past seven Monday night games. One of those non-covers was by the Titans, who opened as an underdog, but then closed as a 2.5-point favorite in a Week 1 game against Denver that they won by two points.