Watch out for some road dogs this week
Week 1 of the NFL season didn't disappoint casual football fans or those who like to wager some money. There was plenty of action, some thrilling finishes, and even a tie. Well, that last one probably didn't make the Vegas crowd very happy. When all was said and done, four favorites lost while several other teams destroyed the projected point spreads. So what does Week 2 have in store?
Note: All times are ET and all games are on Sunday, Sept. 15
Here are this week's best NFL picks against the spread:
San Francisco (1-0) at Cincinnati (0-1), 1 p.m.
The 49ers rode their defense to a road win over Tampa Bay last week while the Bengals hung close with Seattle all game but couldn't muster enough points in the end. San Francisco didn't go back home and has spent the week practicing in nearby Youngstown. That should negate the cross-country travel effects that some road teams deal with for non-divisional games. Cincinnati isn't a heavy home favorite to begin with and running back Joe Mixon's status is up in the air due to an ankle injury. The 49ers showed last week that they can win games without a lot of help from the offense but I think this week Jimmy Garoppolo and company put some scoring drives together. SELECTION: 49ers +1.5
Minnesota (1-0) at Green Bay (1-0), 1 p.m.
Both teams won last week but did it in different ways. The Vikings ran the ball down the Falcons' throats and put the defensive clamps on Matt Ryan and company in an impressive 28-12 win. The Packers couldn't get much going against the Bears defense in Soldier Field but Green Bay's defense was even stingier and the visitors left with a 10-3 victory. Aaron Rodgers is tough to beat at home but Minnesota is 0-1-1 in its last two trips to Lambeau Field. It was just one game but the Vikings beat a pretty good team by basically running the ball and playing solid defense. Those two things travel well. SELECTION: Vikings +3
New England (1-0) at Miami (0-1), 1 p.m.
The Patriots may be the defending Super Bowl champs who just destroyed the Steelers at home but almost a three-touchdown favorite on the road? Oh, wait a minute. It's against the Dolphins, who just gave up 59 at home to the Ravens and a quarterback who many said couldn’t throw the ball (more on him later). Miami head coach Brian Flores may still have a lot of friends in New England from his time there, but don't expect Bill Belichick and company to take it easy on his team. There will be no "Miracle in Miami" this time. More like a massacre. SELECTION: Patriots -19
Arizona (0-0-1) at Baltimore (1-0), 1 p.m.
Lamar Jackson did just fine for a running back last week with five TD passes as the Ravens took the Dolphins to the woodshed. Kyler Murray had a rough start in his NFL debut but an impressive finish, even if it did result in a tie. Now the two Heisman Trophy winners and mirror images in terms of playing style go head-to-head. Jackson may have the experience advantage and the Ravens are probably the better team but that doesn't mean that Murray and the Cardinals are just going to roll over on the road. I think Baltimore will win but Arizona won't embarrass itself in M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday afternoon either. SELECTION: Cardinals +13.5
Last Week: 1-2