Week one of the regular season is in the books, making way for our NFL Week 2 Picks.

The first week always creates so many open doors, and open questions as to just how good teams are.  There’s also the waiting game for which squads will morph into the year’s “Jekyll and Hyde” franchises.  With this season’s Week 1, the clear standout questions are:

  • Just how good are the Lions?
  • How bad are the Giants, and when will the new offense click, if at all?
  • Will Arizona RB Andre Ellington ever be healthy this year?
  • Is Tony Romo done?  What about Eli Manning?
  • Could Brady and Belichick see their AFC East reign end?

Until these questions are answered, a prognosticator can’t overreact from the opening week’s results.  In time, everything will sort itself out.

Also, we’ll find out if yours truly and the Sports Chump fall to a piece of change, or to the WIFE that HATES sports.

Either loss could be devastating to our already slightly impaired credibility.

So, before diving into the NFL Week 2 picks, let’s first see the results from Week 1:

“Knows Picker”

Record (ATS) GB

KP (TWHS)

10-6

Coin Flip

8-8

2

Special Guests

7-9

3

SportsChump

5-10-1

4.5

The WIFE

3-13

7

  • A push is counted as a tie in the standings
  • Slight variation in spreads due to time and site used for picks

Tough week, Chump.

An item that LeSean McCoy would tip at a “shady” restaurant in Philly topped you by three games.

We’d ask for your two cents, but that may not be a good idea.

Week 1 Recap:

Against the Spread: 10-6

Straight Up: 9-7

It’s once again time to “Pick Your Knows – the only time it’s not a disgusting habit – and here are Week 2’s scheduled games (with spreads as they appeared through CBS Sports on 9/10/14).

Matthew Stafford leading a potent Detroit Lions offense

Matthew Stafford was impressive in Detroit’s Week 1 over the Giants

KP’s “Pick Your Knows”: 2014 NFL Week 2

Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5)

It’s one of the more entertaining rivalries in all of sports, let alone football.  These two teams hate each other, and often battle it out to a close, low-scoring affair.  Baltimore fell short last week versus the Bengals, while the Steelers squandered a large lead to the Browns, only to win with a late field goal.  Both teams have talent and are fairly evenly matched.  Last week, I went with my gut and picked the Ravens.  Playing at home, I’m going with my gut again, and taking the Ravens.  If Baltimore falls to 0-2, my gut will be taking a long walk off a short pier.  Ravens by a field goal.

Against the Spread: Baltimore Ravens

Straight Up: Baltimore Ravens

FINAL: Ravens 26, Steelers 6 (Pick posted at Sports Chump’s site prior to kickoff)

Detroit Lions at Carolina Panthers (-3.5)

Yes, the Lions opened strong against the Giants, but this New York team – and its hot mess offense – make Lindsay Lohan’s career look as smooth as silk.  Carolina, on the other side, will have Cam Newton back under center, along with a much stronger defense.  Matthew Stafford was very impressive in Week 1, and while it was against New York’s weaker ‘D’, this looks like a QB that is not only in great game shape, but also playing with a lot of confidence.  The Lions have plenty of weapons – from Megatron to Bush to Tate – all of which, will give Carolina headaches.  Carolina’s lack of offensive support for Cam scares me.  Kelvin Benjamin is still just a rookie.  Detroit wins this one outright.

Against the Spread: Detroit Lions

Straight Up: Detroit Lions

Atlanta Falcons at Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5)

The Falcons put up the best offensive performance of Week 1, with 445 total yards in its overtime victory over the Saints.  Clearly, Matt Ryan is in a happier place, with Roddy White and Julio Jones back on the field.  This week, however, Atlanta is on the road, taking on a very sound Cincinnati team, especially on defense.  Over the course of the season, the concern in Atlanta will be with its defense and run game.  But for now, “Matty Ice” and Atlanta’s passing attack is potent enough to keep this one close.

Against the Spread: Atlanta Falcons

Straight Up: Cincinnati Bengals

New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings (+3.5)

Everybody hit the panic button, the Pats lost game one!  Oh, the humanity!  As I said last week, the Dolphins play New England tough at home, and clearly, the Patriots have some work to do on its offensive line (allowed four sacks in Week 1).  Minnesota had five sacks last week, but not while facing Tom Brady.  An additional week on the practice field, and the Patriots should get some of the kinks out.  While I love what Norv Turner can do with Adrian Peterson and Cordarelle Patterson as his offensive toys, I don’t see Brady and Belichick starting 0-2.  I mean, the Sports Chump has a better shot at coming back in this pick ‘em.  New England rebounds.

Against the Spread: New England Patriots

Straight Up: New England Patriots

Dallas Cowboys at Tennessee Titans (-3.5)

It’s “Panic Button: Part Deux”, this time, starring Tony Romo!  Hey, we all knew that Dallas would be a mess defensively, but last week, the offense was terrible, too (especially Romo).  Ken Whisenhunt has talent in Tennessee, but it doesn’t compare to the players in San Francisco.  Still, the Titans had four sacks last week, so expect Romo to be under some pressure.  Last week, Dallas was such a train wreck, that even Jerry Jones didn’t pick up on the fact that his stadium was a sea of 49er-red.  More likely, he was lying through his teeth.  I won’t lie to you, and that’s why I’m admitting that I might regret this.  Yes, you guessed it, I’m going with Romo.  It hurts typing it.

Against the Spread: Dallas Cowboys

Straight Up: Dallas Cowboys

Jacksonville Jaguars at Washington Redskins (-6.5)

The Jags managed five sacks in the first half against the Eagles last week.  Philly adjusted, rattling off 34 unanswered.  How will the Redskins respond, while playing at home?  Like Philly did?  In Week 1, Washington struggled, scoring just once, and managing six points against the Texans.  RGIII was being used as a pocket passer, and while his completion percentage was solid, he failed to make any impact plays.  The Redskins have the offensive weapons to blow this one open, but it starts with its QB, a guy that I personally have zero faith in.  D.C. will celebrate its first victory, but it will be a nail-biter.

Against the Spread: Jacksonville Jaguars

Straight Up: Washington Redskins

Arizona Cardinals at New York Giants (-1.5)

Talk about underestimating the Cards after an impressive comeback victory versus the Chargers!  Carson Palmer is questionable heading into the weekend and Andre Ellington is still battling a foot injury.  If I were Arizona, I’d rest Ellington for a few weeks, until he’s 100% healthy – and then boom, watch out!  But that’s clearly not happening, so the Cards could be hindered offensively.  No wait, this is the Giants.  You saw them play last week, right?  It was ‘The Benny Hill Show’ set to football.  I’m confidently taking the Cardinals, injuries or not.

Against the Spread: Arizona Cardinals

Straight Up: Arizona Cardinals

Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills (+1.5)

Both teams were a a surprise in Week 1, with the Dolphins ousting the Patriots at home and the Bills upsetting the Bears in OT.  With a tossup line, this comes down to a pick ‘em, so who should we trust more?  It’s September, so the Bills will not have the bitter cold weather advantage.  Miami’s aggressive defense forced four sacks on Tom Brady and the Patriots last week.  That’s enough for me.

Against the Spread: Miami Dolphins

Straight Up: Miami Dolphins

New Orleans Saints at Cleveland Browns (+6.5)

The quick take on the Saints is that 1) We aren’t worried about the offense and 2) perhaps we should question the defense a bit. But that was a loaded Falcons offense, and this is the Browns.  Sure, Cleveland managed a second half comeback in Week 1, only to fall short against the Steelers.  You can admire the fight of the Browns, but with Ben Tate out and Brian Hoyer still under center, the clear bet is to assume that Drew Brees and the Saints have way too weapons for Cleveland to hang around.  Saints cover easily.

Against the Spread: New Orleans Saints

Straight Up: New Orleans Saints

St. Louis Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5.5)

Lovie Smith had a brutal debut in Tampa Bay, losing to a Cam-less Carolina team.  The Rams struggled on offense, as most of us expected.  Perhaps the bigger surprise is that the Rams managed zero sacks in week one.  The Bucs already have question marks in its run game, leaving an unbalanced offense to face a defense that could force a lot of pressure on Josh McCown.  On paper, this looks like it will be a sloppy, mistake-filled, low-scoring mess.  Bucs win this barn burner by a field goal.

Against the Spread: St. Louis Rams

Straight Up: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers (+5.5)

The Seahawks dominated the Pack in Week 1, and therefore, this game will likely come off as a no-brainer for a lot of prognosticators.  San Diego is a solid team, and Seattle will not have the 12th man for support.  Of course, does that mean I’m picking against the Super Bowl champs right now?  I’m not as dumb as I look.  With a balanced offense and an aggressive defense, I’m sticking with the ‘Hawks.

Against the Spread: Seattle Seahawks

Straight Up: Seattle Seahawks

Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-13.5)

Alex Smith skirted away from league-wide criticism, thanks to awful performances from guys like Tony Romo.  But don’t mistake it, Smith was horrible, and so were the Chiefs.  The losses on the offensive line have clearly hurt Kansas City.  The Week 1 bright spot for K.C. was its four sacks, but we shouldn’t expect such an output against Peyton Manning and a stronger offensive unit.  Divisional rivalries can often be closer affairs, but this doesn’t look like one of them, especially with the Broncos playing at home.  Look for Peyton and the Broncos to keep rolling.

Against the Spread: Denver Broncos

Straight Up: Denver Broncos

New York Jets at Green Bay Packers (-8.5)

Rex Ryan continues to run his mouth, as his Jets find ways to get ugly wins against “bottom of the totem pole” teams like the Raiders.  But KP, New York is number one in both pass defense (133 ypg) and run defense (25 ypg)!  Friend, it was the Raiders.  Oh, and by the way, Derek Carr still managed a 94.7 QB rating in Week 1.  This is Aaron Rodgers and the Packers playing in the 2014 Lambeau Field home opener.  It’ll be ugly alright, but not an ugly victory, Rex.  Go Pack, go… and go big.

Against the Spread: Green Bay Packers

Straight Up: Green Bay Packers

Houston Texans at Oakland Raiders (+2.5)

Bill O’Brien won his head coaching debut, but it wasn’t always pretty against the Redskins.  Sitting and thinking about the players on each roster, J.J. Watt stands out the most, likely to put plenty of pressure on Derek Carr and Oakland’s offensive line.  O’Brien is an offensive mind that worked under Bill Belichick, so it won’t be long before Houston starts to improve on that side of the ball, too.  The Texans go into Oakland win this one, moving to 2-0.

Against the Spread: Houston Texans

Straight Up: Houston Texans

Chicago Bears at San Francisco 49ers (-7.5)

The Bears faltered at home in Week 1, losing to the Bills in OT, while the Niners took it to Romo and the Cowboys on the road.  Jay Cutler is very similar to Romo, likely to post numbers in bunches, while also forcing plenty of throws, and tossing multiple picks.  Matt Forte is a beast in the trenches, and expect the Bears to try and force him down San Francisco’s throat, especially after DeMarco Murray had a productive day against the Niners in Week 1.  This game looks to be more of a slugfest in the trenches, and a lower-scoring affair.  That’s why I’m taking the Bears and the points.

Against the Spread: Chicago Bears

Straight Up: San Francisco 49ers

Philadelphia Eagles at Indianapolis Colts (-3.5)

This should be a fun Monday night game, with two teams capable of putting up points in bunches.  If you like offense, then you should love this one.  Last week, Luck and the Colts made a late surge against the Broncos, but couldn’t handle Peyton and Denver’s ‘O’.  Philly, meanwhile, rattled off 34 unanswered against the Jags, after allowing five sacks and trailing 17-0 in the first half.  Nick Foles will need to have a more consistent performance.  If the Eagles fall behind, it won’t be so easy to come back.  Luck and the Colts are tough to top at home, and I’m giving the edge to Indy.  Colts by a TD, 31-24.

Against the Spread: Indianapolis Colts

Straight Up: Indianapolis Colts

 

THE WIFE

She HATES sports, but will pick teams in hopes of leading to your embarrassment.  No blurb, just her selection, and we’re lucky to get that much.

It’s actually impressive that she could randomly guess, and only get three correct in Week 1.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5) – Ravens

Detroit Lions at Carolina Panthers (-3.5) – Lions

Atlanta Falcons at Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5) – Bengals

New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings (+3.5) – Patriots

Dallas Cowboys at Tennessee Titans (-3.5) – Titans

Jacksonville Jaguars at Washington Redskins (-6.5) – Redskins

Arizona Cardinals at New York Giants (-1.5) – Cardinals

Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills (+1.5) – Dolphins

New Orleans Saints at Cleveland Browns (+6.5) – Saints

St. Louis Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5.5) – Bucs

Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers (+5.5) – Chargers

Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-13.5) – Broncos

New York Jets at Green Bay Packers (-8.5) – Packers

Houston Texans at Oakland Raiders (+2.5) – Raiders

Chicago Bears at San Francisco 49ers (-6.5) – Bears

Philadelphia Eagles at Indianapolis Colts (-3.5) – Colts

 

COIN FLIP

This quarter refuses to be referred to as “Chump change”… see what I did there?

Oh, and by the way, HEADS equals the HOME team, and TAILS is a vote for the AWAY team.

Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5) – Ravens

Detroit Lions at Carolina Panthers (-3.5) – Lions

Atlanta Falcons at Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5) – Falcons

New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings (+3.5) – Vikings

Dallas Cowboys at Tennessee Titans (-3.5) – Titans

Jacksonville Jaguars at Washington Redskins (-6.5) – Jaguars

Arizona Cardinals at New York Giants (-1.5) – Giants

Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills (+1.5) – Bills

New Orleans Saints at Cleveland Browns (+6.5) – Browns

St. Louis Rams at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-5.5) – Bucs

Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers (+5.5) – Seahawks

Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos (-13.5) – Chiefs

New York Jets at Green Bay Packers (-8.5) – Packers

Houston Texans at Oakland Raiders (+2.5) – Texans

Chicago Bears at San Francisco 49ers (-6.5) – 49ers

Philadelphia Eagles at Indianapolis Colts (-3.5) – Eagles

 

SPORTSCHUMP’S “Follow at Your Own Risk” Picks

The Chump is a friend of mine for a long, long time.  Probably longer than he’d prefer to admit.  He got crushed last week, and probably doesn’t want anyone admitting to that, either.

Here are a few of his Week 2 selections:

DETROIT +2.5 at CAROLINA

Remember last week when I said I didn’t think Detroit had all the parts to field a competitive team this year.  Apparently the Giants read that preview because the Lions absolutely waxed them.  Oh, and remember how I said Carolina would lose to the Buccaneers?  Well, that didn’t happen either.  Cam Newton is scheduled to return this week but the Lions looked like world-beaters against what I thought was a decent Giants team.  How many times can I be wrong in one summary?  Let me count the ways.  I’ll take the Lions and the points.

JACKSONVILLE +6 at THAT TEAM FROM WASHINGTON

I was right about (that team from) Washington last week and also right about Jacksonville… in the first half, until they remembered they were Jacksonville playing in Philadelphia.  Allowing 34 points in the second half after leading by 17?  The Jags were getting ten in that game making that comeback the biggest back door cover in recent history.  I still like Jax plus the six though as Washington was barely able to muster up any offense.  That being said, if Jax loses another road heartbreaker like they did last week, I’ll be hard-pressed to take them and ANY points for the rest of the season.

NEW ENGLAND -3 at MINNESOTA

Can you see Tom Brady starting this season 2-0?  Here’s Bill Belichick’s post-game press conference if that happens.  “We got beat.”   Personality plus.  Belichick rarely smiles and he might not find many more reasons to this season if the Pats keep this up.  But if he were to ever crack a smile, this would have to be one of those weeks, don’t you think?  Pats cover.

For the full spread, head over to the Sports Chump’s site, but do so at your own risk, as he only landed in the winner’s circle five times during Week 1.

 

Special Guest: Dubsism

Do yourself a favor, and visit Dub’s site.  Be prepared to be a healthy combination of offended and entertained.

Here are a few samples of his picks:

11) Kansas City at Denver (-13), O/U 51

The guy on the hot seat in this game is Alex Smith. The Chiefs just gave a Alex Smith a dump truck full of money, and after last week’s performance against the Titans, the numbers of people questioning that will grow quickly.   After throwing three picks against Tennessee, and now having to go into Denver, it is very possible that Alex Smith and the Chiefs may be regressing toward 2012. Denver may actually cover the over in this one by themselves, especially if Smith has another Romo-esque performance.

12) Houston (-3) at Oakland, O/U 39

Oakland is another of four home underdogs this week, and deservedly so. Maurice Jones-Drew obviously has nothing left, Darren McFadden is one injury away from being served in an Oscar Meyer wrapper, and Derek Carr has as much chance of being effective as Roger Goodell’s public relations staff.

For the full spread, head over to the Sports Chump’s site, and prepare your hate mail.

 

We’ll see who is leading when the dust settles.

C’mon, let’s face it, it’ll be KP and TWHS.