Week 2 NFL Best Bets: Fade the Colts and Bills and more of Jason La Canfora's picks
La Canfora shares his top picks for Week 2, including the Redskins and Chargers winning big
So far, so good.
After years of slow starts, we managed to go 3-0 in this space in Week 1, and, actually, did it fairly comfortably. The Rams and Ravens took care of business easily, and the Bengals ended up covering easily, but that was only because the Colts fumbled on what was shaping up to be a potential game-winning drive. That was far closer that the final score would indicate.
But whatever. We'll take it.
You'll notice a few continuing trends this week. Fade the Colts. Fade the Bills. I'm still not sure Vegas has caught up to how lopsided some of their games will be, and the lines still look very appealing to me. I see major deficiencies that other teams will expose, and both teams giving up a ton of points. The other team we liked last week to get drubbed, the Raiders, fell apart late (same with the Colts), and their point spread has surged this week, while I still see value in doubling down against the Bills and Colts.
What NFL picks can you make with confidence in Week 2? And what Super Bowl contender is in for a massive shock? Visit SportsLine now to see which NFL teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from the model that has beaten 98 percent of experts over the past two years.
Obviously, there is some trepidation with predicting this weekend's games with the storms pounding the East Coast creating potential issues with logistics and impacting the game conditions in a severe manner, so keep that in mind as kickoff approaches as well.
Redskins (-5.5) vs. Colts
I promise this is not an overreaction to Washington curb-stomping the Cardinals in Arizona last week. This just looks like a bad matchup for the Colts. The Skins offensive line should be able to dictate physically against a weak front, Alex Smith will find plenty of windows to exploit and I see the Skins putting on a good show in their home opener. Jordan Reed will be a nightmare for the Colts to cover, and the smaller speedy guys on the outside should find plenty of joy as well. Andrew Luck is back, but Indy is still sorting through its run game and the right side of the offensive line really concerns me. Add in the fact that an inferior, dome team may be playing in extreme weather conditions, and I see the Skins winning by at least a touchdown.
Chargers (-7) at Bills
The Bills had no business being on the field with the pedestrian Ravens a week ago, and it wasn't all just because of since-defrocked starting quarterback Nathan Peterman. And, I wouldn't be looking for Josh Allen, in his first NFL start, and in the Bills' home opener no less, to be setting the world on fire. Because if the Bills thought he was really better than Peterman right now, Allen would have started Week 1. I would love the Chargers more if Joey Bosa was playing, but Melvin Ingram and others will still feast on this Buffalo offensive line, Allen will throw some picks and the Chargers will sell out to keep Shady McCoy from beating them. There is no threat of snow or freezing temps, as best I can tell, and Philip Rivers and the Chargers receivers should have relative ease marching up and down the field. A three-score margin wouldn't shock me.
The Titans are already in a crisis of sorts. The QB, seemingly always dinged up, is already dinged up. The go-to guy in the passing game, TE Delanie Walker, is out for the year. The run game is still being sorted out as to the division of labor, and otherwise, their stud left tackle is suffering from a concussion and might not play, and their premier right tackle, Jack Conklin, has been out. Oh yeah, did I mention Mariota couldn't grip the ball last week and that Blaine Gabbert is the "No. 2" QB there? And all of this is being sorted out by a rookie head coach, Mike Vrabel, who came over from the Texans and whom Houston veteran head coach Bill O'Brien knows inside out. Yeah, the Texans have issues with Deshaun Watson laboring after an ACL tear, and Whitney Mercilus MIA in his first game back from season ending injury and J.J. Watt still working his way back from season-ending injury, but man, if ever there was a time to knock off a wounded rival in their stadium, and bounce back from a tough loss to perennial AFC Super Bowl representative New England a week ago, this is it. Add it all up, and the Texans are at least a field-goal better than this wounded Titans outfit to me.
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