Aengus Moorehead NFL Football Week 2 Betting Picks
Sunday, September 19, 2010
by Aengus Moorehead
Last week: Kansas City (+4.5) beats visiting San Diego 24-17. Cleveland (+2.5) loses to host Tampa Bay 17-14.
Last week against the Spread: Kansas City upsets; Cleveland loses and does not cover.
Chiefs coach Todd Haley and the Browns' Eric Mangini know each other well from when they were young assistants with Bill Parcells' 1990s Jets. Mangini had the upper hand when their teams went head to head last Dec. 20 in a 41-34 Browns win. Their '09 defenses were similarly inept, the Chiefs finishing 30th (388.2 yards a game), the Browns ending in 31st (389.2). Both of their defenses looked improved in their respective openers, but there's a big difference between containing San Diego, as the Chiefs did, and taming Tampa Bay, as the Browns did.
If QB Jake Delhomme shows composure in his first home game as a Brown, he should have an edge on Chief’s QB Matt Cassel, who squeezed just 68 yards out of 22 passes in the opener. Just as Kansas City's crowd elevated the Chiefs against San Diego, the Dawg Pound should make a difference in this matchup of evenly matched teams that went a combined 9-23 last year but not that much. Take Chiefs.
Last week:Buffalo (+2.5) loses to visiting Miami 15-10. Green Bay (-2.5) beats host Philadelphia 27-20.
Last week against the Spread: Buffalo loses and does not cover; Green Bay covers.
The Bills have issues on the offensive line and at linebacker, which doesn't bode well for going into Lambeau Field against a team that played poorly on offense and still won, 27-20, in Philadelphia. Expect the Packers to come out throwing and Aaron Rodgers to be focused on playing a lot better than a week ago. Normally, the Packers would face a huge disadvantage in special teams vs. the Bills, but they actually played very well last week and may be much improved from last season. Take Packers.
Last week’s results: Baltimore (+2.5) beats host NY Jets 10-9. Cincinnati (+4.5) loses to host New England 38-24.
Last week against the Spread: Baltimore upsets; Cincinnati loses and does not cover.
The Bengals' 2010 motto -- "Strike First, Strike Fast" -- holds plenty of meaning for this game. Falling behind the Patriots, 31-3, in a Week 1 loss served as a wakeup call. Cincinnati definitely needs a faster start on both sides of the ball in order to win their ninth-straight division game. They're working to solve assignment and alignment problems on defense, and must do a better job converting first downs on third-and-short situations.
As dominating as the Ravens defense performed in the opener, Baltimore's offense had difficulty getting into the end zone. Cincinnati's offense vs. Baltimore's defense is on the marquee, but the Ravens have the offensive weapons to take down a Bengals' defense that can't seem to get lined up correctly. Take Ravens.
Last week’s results: Philadelphia (+2.5) loses to visiting Green Bay 27-20. Detroit (+6.5) loses to host Chicago 19-14.
Last week against the Spread: Philadelphia loses and does not cover; Detroit loses but covers.
The Lions still can't get a break -- they'll be facing a hungry Michael Vick determined to win him a starting job (or at least spark the debate). Detroit's defensive linemen, who had four sacks last week, would've preferred to face Kolb, more of a stationary target in the pocket. The Lions were expected to be a formidable offense this season, but Matt Stafford is hurt and neither the running nor passing units are clicking yet. Both clubs are looking for their first win and the Lions' search will continue. Take Eagles.
Last week’s results: Tampa Bay (-2.5) beats visiting Cleveland 17-14. Carolina (+6.5) loses to host NY Giants 31-18.
Last week against the Spread: Tampa Bay loses and does not cover; Carolina loses and does not cover.
There are so many unknowns about both of these teams, but one has to think that after pulling the plug on the running game in New York (five carries in the second half), the Panthers will want to make it an emphasis again. With an improved passing game, the Bucs can create more problems than in the past, but the Panthers defense has played well in spurts. Take Panthers.
Last week’s results: Arizona (-3.5) beats host St-Louis 17-13. Atlanta (-2.5) loses to host Pittsburgh 15-19.
Last week against the Spread: Arizona covers; Atlanta loses outright.
The Cardinals are breaking in a new quarterback and getting him used to his top-flight receiver in Larry Fitzgerald. Derek Anderson had 19 incompletions against St. Louis, 12 of which were on passes thrown to Fitzgerald. They clearly still have some work to do in coordinating their passing attack. He was 19-of-26 (73 percent) on his other passes. Anderson practiced mostly with the second team during the preseason, and Fitzgerald's sprained knee ligaments slowed his progress. Meanwhile, the Falcons offense should be able to get untracked at the Georgia Dome, and the revamped defense played well in Pittsburgh. Take Falcons.
Last week’s results: Miami (+2.5) beats host Buffalo 15-10. Minnesota (+4.5) loses to host New Orleans 14-9.
Last week against the Spread: Miami covers; Minnesota loses and does not cover.
The home opener will work in favor of a Vikings' team that's struggling to get up to speed with a rusty QB, an undermanned receiving corps and a line that's still coming together. The Vikings should contain a physical Dolphins running game and put all the pressure on Chad Henne, who didn't look comfortable in Week 1. The Vikings' pass rush, which can be violent at home, will force Henne to make costly mistakes. That will take the pressure off Favre and the passing game. Adrian Peterson, whose running and ball security was outstanding against the Saints, should be able to carry the Vikings' offense to a low-scoring victory. Carefully take Vikings.
Last week’s results: St-Louis (+3.5) loses to visiting Arizona 17-13. Oakland (+6.5) loses to host Tennessee 38-13.
Last week against the Spread: St-Louis loses and does not cover; Oakland loses and does not cover.
The Raiders feel as if all their problems from their Week 1 loss against the Titans can be fixed this week. They had better hope so, because a loss against the Rams at home could deal a huge blow to their confidence. The Rams are riding a high after nearly upsetting the Cardinals and Sam Bradford showing he can perform under pressure.
This is a game the Raiders feel as if they can win. The Rams have to feel the same way, though. Look for the Raiders to pressure Bradford at every turn and do whatever they can to neutralize RB Steven Jackson and put the game in Bradford's hands. The Raiders should prevail in a game of rebuilding teams. Take Raiders.
Last week’s results: Seattle (+2.5) beats visiting San Francisco 31-6. Denver (+2.5) loses to host Jacksonville 24-17.
Last week against the Spread: Seattle upsets; Denver loses and does not cover.
The Broncos play their first game in Denver having failed to establish much of a home-field advantage last season, with four of their final five games at Invesco Field resulting in losses. And with Indianapolis, Tennessee, Baltimore and the New York Jets on the docket the next four weeks, this is a must-have early game.
Seattle is brimming with confidence after its beat-down of the 49ers. Pete Carroll’s rah-rah spirit has resonated. The key is whether Denver’s young offensive line can give Kyle Orton sufficient time to continue spreading the ball around the field. If it does, Denver should even its record. Take Broncos.
Last week’s results: Jacksonville (-2.5) beats visiting Denver 24-17. San Diego (-4.5) loses to host Kansas City 21-14.
Last week against the Spread: Jacksonville covers; San Diego loses outright.
The Chargers appear better on defense than they were in 2009, and so do the Jaguars. But the Chargers will bring Philip Rivers into the game, and he has had a passer rating of 96.9 or above in 25 of his 39 starts since last facing the Jaguars, and his passer rating of 103.0 since then is tops in the NFL.
The Chargers are at home, and even though they face the end of their 48-game streak without a local TV blackout, it is an advantage against a team coming a long way. Take Chargers.
Last week’s results: New Orleans (-4.5) beats visiting Minnesota 15-9. San Francisco (-2.5) loses to host Seattle 31-6.
Last week against the Spread: New Orleans covers; San Francisco loses outright.
When Mike Singletary took over the 49ers midway through the 2008 season, his first game was a disastrous loss to Seattle. However, he and the 49ers followed that defeat with an impressive Monday night game against Arizona. He'll be looking for a similar turnaround this week against the defending Super Bowl champions.
As with most of the Saints' opponents, the key will be how San Francisco deals with New Orleans' three- and four-receivers sets, alignments that gave the 49ers problems in Seattle. Singletary and the 49ers didn't win that Monday night game in 2008, but the effort sparked their resurgence. Look for a similar dynamic against New Orleans. But the Saints will prevail. Take Saints.
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