The first week of the season is in the books and I squeaked out a winning week with an 8-7-1 record. I had a few good calls like the San Francisco 49ers putting forth a good showing in Week 1, the Miami Dolphins playing well in Seattle, as well as a couple of bad misreads like the Browns being competitive (won't make that mistake again)!
What does the second week of the season have in store for us?
New York Jets (-1) at Buffalo Bills
The Bills' offense is dealing with too many injuries on both ides of the ball (and Sammy Watkins won't be a 100 percent). The Jets have a dominant defensive line and enough playmakers on offense to be dangerous. I like the Jets overall build and think they will avenge last year's losses to the Bills.
Tennessee Titans (+6) at Detroit Lions
The Titans aren't a great team, but I think they will match up fairly well with the Lions. The Titans are pretty good in pass coverage and should be able to run on the Lions as well.
Kansas City Chiefs (+2.5) at Houston Texans
I'm not quite sure what to expect from either of these teams quite yet. The Texans have a lot of the pieces, but can Osweiler give them enough? The Chiefs could be missing two of their best players -- Justin Houston and Jamaal Charles.
Miami Dolphins (+6.5) at New England Patriots
I like the Dolphins front seven and think it could cause the Patriots some problems. Not enough to win, but enough to play the game closer than anticipated.
Pick: Dolphins cover
Baltimore Ravens (-6.5) at Cleveland Browns
Often, teams will rally around a backup quarterback in his first appearance of the season. Now this is early in the season, can the Browns rally?
Pick: Browns cover
Cincinnati Bengals (+3.5) at Pittsburgh Steelers
I think the Steelers are going to have a big year, but I think the Bengals have been looking forward to this game all offseason to avenge their playoff loss. I'm worried about anyone stopping the Steelers offense this year, but if there is a team it could be the Bengals, who have a lot of quality players.
Pick: Bengals cover
Dallas Cowboys (+3) at Washington Redskins
I think this will be a good game. I think the Cowboys will get to showcase what makes Ezekiel Elliott special as the season wears on and I don't trust the Redskins defense yet.
Pick: Cowboys with the upset
New Orleans Saints (+4.5) at New York Giants
On paper the Giants match up very well with the Saints. First, the Saints are not the same team outdoors on the road that they are at home. Second, the Saints strengths should be neutralized by the Giants strengths. The Giants should be able to take advantage of the Saints, who will be trotting out UDFA's and rookie cornerbacks out against what has the potential to be one of the top pass receiving corps in the league.
The Giants also have invested heavily at cornerback which should matchup with the Saints receiving corps. The Giants biggest weakness on defense is pass catchers (backs and tight ends) in the middle of the field, something the Saints could exploit. I think, on paper, the Giants should cover the spread, but with their recent history against the Saints and pitiful play against top tier quarterbacks makes me nervous.
Pick: Saints cover
San Francisco 49ers (+13.5) at Carolina Panthers
I don't know if the Panthers' offense is explosive enough or consistent enough for me to lay 13.5 points.
Pick: 49ers cover
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+6.5) at Arizona Cardinals
The Buccaneers are an ascending team and Jameis Winston looks like the real deal. I'll take the points.
Pick: Buccaneers cover
Seattle Seahawks (+6.5) at Los Angeles Rams
I think the Rams will bounce back here and play well after getting embarrassed on national TV on Monday Night Football. Also, for some reason the Rams have just played very well against the Seahawks as of late.
Pick: Rams cover
Indianapolis Colts (+6) at Denver Broncos
Atlanta Falcons (+5) at Oakland Raiders
I'm aware that the Falcons started off hot last year (and really just beat up on the terrible NFC East) before faltering down the stretch and then started poorly this season so it' naive to think there still might be something there, but I don't yet trust the Raiders as heavy favorites and I'll almost take the points with a quality quarterback.
Pick: Falcons cover
Jacksonville Jaguars (+3) at San Diego Chargers
I was impressed with the Jaguars vs the Packers last week. I think their defense has a lot of potential and the offense can be very explosive. I think the Chargers losing Keenan Allen could also hurt.
Pick: Jaguars with the mild upset
Green Bay Packers (-2) at Minnesota Vikings
How good will Sam Bradford be with two weeks of learning the Vikings playbook? The Vikings have a lot of talent at the important positions, but the Packers have Aaron Rodgers.
Philadelphia Eagles (+3) at Chicago Bears
I think the Bears will play well here. Their defense isn't bad and they have weapons on offense. This will be a better test for Carson Wentz than the Browns were. On the road vs a quality NFL franchise on Monday Night Football. Wentz played well last week, but I could see him making a few mistakes that cost them the game this week.