Nostrathomas struggled a bit in Week 1 going 3-2 with his top five games but still finished the week 10-4-1 straight up and 9-6 against the spread. We’re over the .500 mark and off to a solid start for the 2018 NFL Season. Now, it’s on to Week Two.
Remember last week when Nostrathomas said that Week One was one of the toughest weeks to predict because we had practically no information to work with. This week everybody will be so busy overreacting to the results of Week One that there is value to be had if you know where to look.
Of course, Nostrathomas filled and drained his mugs quite a few times while watching last week’s game between the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers, first in celebration, then in frustration but the mugs are refilled and the suds are forming into visions of Week Two.
Nosrathomas Predicts Week Two: Ride These Three to the Winners Circle
Minnesota Vikings vs Green Bay Packers – Pick ‘em (Sunday 1 PM ET, Lambeau Field, Green Bay, WI)
The point spread for this Week Two rivalry match-up has stubbornly stayed at pick ‘em despite 90 percent of public money coming in on the Vikings. Normally Minnesota would have started to give points to get more money wagered on Green Bay’s side of the game. On the on the surface, it appears the sports books will be bleeding money if the Vikings win. Remember last week’s lesson, if a line isn’t moving when everything says it should be, there’s a reason.
Professional betters must be pounding the Green Bay side of this line. The legend of Aaron Rodgers took a leap into the stratosphere when he limped back onto the field for the second half against the Chicago Bears. Sir Aaron of Rodgers hoisted the Packers onto his shoulders and carried them back from a 20-0 deficit to a 24-23 victory.
The Myth of the Green Bay Packers
Now let’s look at why this epic is more myth than reality. Green Bay’s offensive line weakness was exposed by the Bears. The Vikings have a superior defensive line of their own who are licking their lips at the thought of a still limping Rodgers on the menu. Chicago’s secondary made two major mistakes that helped give their game away. Minnesota’s won’t make those mistakes.
We joined the sharps in taking the Houston Texans +6.5 against the New England Patriots and lost. We will not be joining them in Week Two as they overreact to Green Bay’s win over the Bears. The Vikings have won four of their last five against Green Bay. They extend that streak this week.
Minnesota Vikings 30 Green Bay Packers 22
Detroit Lions vs San Francisco 49ers -6 (Sunday 4:05 ET, Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, CA)
The Lions got pounded by the New York Jets in their home opener last week. San Francisco struggled out of the gate but mounted a strong second-half comeback effort before losing to the Vikings.
Detroit hasn’t been able to run the football since 2011 before Jahvid Best went down with one concussion too many. Since then, they’ve thrown numbers at the problem but no actual quality running backs. The Lions tried LeGarrette Blount, Theo Riddick and Kerryon Johnson last week and received 34 yards for their efforts.
Jimmy Garoppolo didn’t start the 2018 season like he finished off 2017 but he was playing one of the toughest defenses in the NFL. Detroit may not be as bad as they looked last week but that would be tough to do. Lay the points and take San Francisco in their home opener.
San Francisco 49ers 29 Detroit Lions 17
Seattle Seahawks vs Chicago Bears -3.5 (Monday Night Football, Soldier Field, Chicago, IL)
Most “experts” are picking Seattle this week since they figure the Bears are hungover from such a devastating loss to open their season. Actually, it’s just Nostrathomas that’s hungover. Being based in the Windy City though gives the Seer of Sayers a different perspective on the team’s emotional state. The Bears are already at a point with first-time head coach Matt Nagy that they’d be willing to run through a wall for him and the Week Two wall directly in front of them is the Seahawks.
Seattle isn’t going to be easy to topple though. Russell Wilson is still a dangerous quarterback, especially on the run. Doug Baldwin will miss the game with a sprained MCL but Brandon Marshall is still a tall and talented receiving target.
The issue for Wilson is he has a weak offensive line to protect him. That problem is worse for Seattle going into Monday night with guard D.J. Fluker suffering from a hamstring injury. Chicago is primed to take advantage. Their defensive front is very good and Khalil Mack is one week closer to rounding into full game shape after holding out the entire preseason.
We’ll also see if Nagy gives more opportunities to Jordan Howard this week, especially in short yardage situations. Howard averaged 5.5-yards per rush against Green Bay and is one of the toughest backs in the league to pull to the turf.
Give the Bears the three points for home field advantage and another for Khalil Mack making his Soldier Field debut.
Chicago Bears 24 Seattle Seahawks 20
Pad Your Parley By Choosing Among The Following
Philadelphia Eagles -3 vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Sunday 1 PM ET, Raymond James Stadium, Tampa Bay, FL)
Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick didn’t just have the greatest game of his career last week. He had the greatest game of Tom Brady’s, Brett Favre’s, John Elway’s or Sammy Baugh’s career. The question now is if Fitzpatrick really is the perfect quarterback for Dirk Koetter’s offense or if the New Orleans Saints are really that putrid on defense.
We’ll have a little bit more of an idea about that after Tampa Bay takes on the Eagles. Philadelphia proved last week that they have enough defense to keep a good offense down. The Buccaneers are also going into this game a bit beat up after the pounding they gave the New Orleans Saints.
Not having DeSean Jackson to line up opposite Mike Evans is going to make life a little bit easier for on Philadelphia’s defense. This game is going to be tough but pulling the trigger on a Buccaneers’ upset is even tougher. The road favorite is the choice here.
Philadelphia Eagles 29 Tampa Bay Buccaneers 24
Carolina Panthers vs Atlanta Falcons -6 (Sunday 1 PM ET, Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, GA)
Carolina is soon going to have a better team on their injury list than the one they put on the field. Greg Olsen is out with a fracture in his right foot. Starting guard Trai Turner is dealing with concussion issues and all-everything linebacker Luke Kuechly will be playing with a hyperextended left knee.
For Atlanta, last week offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian treated Julio Jones like the receiver was on his fantasy team. Falcons need a little more Mohamed Sanu in this game and a more noticeable attempt at a running attack.
Don’t overreact to the fact that Atlanta lost to the World Champions in Week 1 and the Panthers beat up a limited Dallas team. This is the Falcons’ home opener and they’ll be coming off a 10-day break, so take them to win and cover.
Atlanta Falcons 27 Carolina Panthers 16
Los Angeles Chargers -7.5 at Buffalo Bills (Sunday 1 PM ET, New Era Field, Buffalo, NY)
It’s not easy picking the Chargers and laying a touchdown of points when they’re traveling to the east coast but there is no overreacting to what Buffalo showed last week. The funny part about the point spread for this game is it started at -9 and was quickly bet down to its current number.
Philip Rivers kept in a game they had no business staying in last week and exposed the weak Kansas City Chiefs secondary in the process. For Buffalo, they decided the future is now and will be starting rookie Josh Allen at quarterback.
Take Los Angeles to record a rare September win and lay the points. Buffalo may look better than they did last week but it would be nearly impossible to look worse.
Los Angeles Chargers 26 Buffalo Bills 10
Miami Dolphins vs New York Jets -3 (Sunday 1 PM ET, MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ)
Miami played a seven-hour game due to weather delays last week and came away with a 27-20 win over the Tennessee Titans. They’ll be on the field only three hours this week but it may feel like they’ve been out seven when it’s over.
Miami has put some talent on the field around quarterback Ryan Tannehill in receivers Danny Amendola, Kenny Stills and running back Frank Gore but the Jets have the defense to match. New York also has a head coach who knows how to get the most out of a defense in Todd Bowles.
We don’t want to anoint quarterback Sam Darnold offensive rookie of the year quite yet but he looked very impressive in a hostile environment last week. He also has two running backs in Bilal Powell and Isaiah Crowell to keep him from having to fill the air with footballs just to win a game. The J-E-T-S, JETS, JETS JETS improve to 2-0 and prepare for a Week 3 Thursday Night showdown with the Cleveland Browns.
New York Jets 26 Miami Dolphins 20
Indianapolis Colts vs Washington Redskins -6 (Sunday 1 PM ET, FedEx Field, Washington, D.C.)
The Colts took a tough loss at home to Cincinnati in their season opener much like Baltimore did against the Bengals in the kickoff to Week 2. Washington put together a convincing win against the Arizona Cardinals with new quarterback Alex Smith looking very comfortable in Gruden the Younger’s offense.
Depending on field conditions after Hurricane Florence tears through the east coast, being able to run the ball could be the difference between winning and losing. The ageless Adrian Peterson racked up 96-yards on the ground last week and Chris Thompson added 65 of his own. That should be enough to get Washington off to a 2-0 start.
Washington Redskins 23 Indianapolis Colts 13
The Don’t Waste Your Money Group
New England Patriots -1 at Jacksonville Jaguars (Sunday 4:25 PM ET, EverBank Field, Jacksonville, FL)
A replay of last season’s AFC Championship Game. The Jaguars have the defense to stay in this game. Their problem is on offense with Leonard Fournette fighting a hamstring injury. The rule here is that with all things being equal, take the team with the better quarterback (sit down Blake Bortles).
Kansas City Chiefs vs Pittsburgh Steelers -4.5 (Sunday 1 PM ET, Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA)
This and the game directly above have the potential to be the two best games of the week. Watch and enjoy but Nostrathomas does not recommend that you bet them.
The Steelers have won five of their last six against Kansas City. This game shapes up to be an air battle between Patrick Mahomes and Ben Roethlisberger. The Chiefs’ trouble is Pittsburgh has the defense to keep Mahomes on the run.
Pittsburgh Steelers 34 Kansas City Chiefs 28
Cleveland Browns vs New Orleans Saints -9 (1 PM ET, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, LA)
There’s no question that the Saints are going to score points. The question is whether they can keep opponents from scoring as fast as Drew Brees can keep his side of the scoreboard spinning. Until they get another game or two behind them it’s best to keep New Orleans at arms-length.
New Orleans Saints 38 Cleveland Browns 20
Oakland Raiders vs Denver Broncos -6 (4:25 PM ET, Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, CO)
Why is Denver a six-point favorite over the Raiders even at home? The Broncos barely hung on to beat Seattle last week even though their defense pounded poor Russell Wilson into the turf six times.
So far the Raiders’ head coach has shipped his All-Pro Pass Rusher at of town and publically called out his quarterback, and we’re just starting Week 2. Take the Broncos because of their defense. Watch Oakland because of their dysfunction.
Denver Broncos 25 Oakland Raiders 16
Houston Texans -3 vs Tennessee Titans (Sunday 1 PM ET, Nissan Stadium, Nashville, TN)
This game was off the board most of the week while the sports books waited to see how the injury situation would play out for both teams.
It appears both starting quarterbacks will play. The bad news is the Titans have lost tight end Delanie Walker for the season with an ankle fracture. Also, if Marcus Mariota injures his elbow again Tennessee will be rolling out backup Blaine Gabbert. His very name is the definition of bad quarterbacking.
Houston Texans 23 Tennessee Titans 18
Arizona Cardinals vs Los Angeles Rams -13 (4:05 PM ET, Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, CA)
The Cardinals are terrible on offense with the Gabbertian Sam Bradford at quarterback. They would be even worse if Mike Glennon had to come out and Gabbert all over the field. Meanwhile, the Rams are a powerhouse on defense along with plenty of offense to make them a confident straight up pick. They’ll win and Nostrathomas thinks they’ll cover but 13 points is a tough nut to crack in a Week 2 game.
Los Angeles Rams 33 Arizona Cardinals 13
New York Giants vs Dallas Cowboys -3 (Sunday Night Football, AT&T Stadium, Dallas, TX)
These bitter rivals will play a Sunday Night Football game that will be as reliable as a warm glass of milk to help fans get to sleep after a busy day. Nostrathomas is taking the home team and laying the points for no particular reason.
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