After a stellar Week 1 showing, going 3-0 on our article picks, we’ll look to continue the streak this Sunday with a few different angles. Here are the odds and best bets for NFL Week 2. Good luck with all of your action!
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texans
In our first game of the Sunday slate, we’ll look at a battle of rookie Quarterbacks as #2 overall pick CJ Stroud and the Texans host #4 overall pick Anthony Richardson and the Colts.
This game, however, might end up being the story of two teams headed in opposite directions. Despite appearing competitive for the first half of football, the Texans did not have a good showing in their opener against the Ravens as the offense was unable to find the end zone.
Stroud and Richardson had similar results as passers in Week 1. Both players were victim to a conservative play call by their head coaches in their respective first games of their careers. Neither player had an aDOT (average depth of target) over six yards, which ranked in the bottom 10 in the league. Stroud and Richardson ranked number four and six in “bad throw percentage”.
However, Richardson has a much more dynamic game as a rusher, running for 40 yards and a touchdown against the Jaguars. Not only does Richardson have the ability to impact the game with his legs, he also has a much stronger cast of skill position players around him.
He has a legitimate #1 receiver in Michael Pittman, who he connected with 8 times on 11 targets for just under 100 yards and a touchdown. Stroud is trying to make something out of nothing with veteran Robert Woods, Nico Collins, and Tank Dell. They lost FA acquisition Noah Brown to injury in Week 1.
The Colts also have a massive advantage in offensive line in this matchup. PFF ranked the Colts the #9 offensive line after a strong performance from Quentin Nelson and company, only allowing nine pressures in their opening week. The Texans on the other hand, ranked 28th, allowing CJ Stroud to be sacked five times against the Ravens.
The Texans also picked up injuries to both starting tackles Greg Fant and Laremy Tunsil, the two players expected to anchor this line. Both are limited in practice this week but should suit up on Sunday, albeit banged up. I think the Colts defensive front will continue to terrorize the Texans offensive line, which might end up being a theme for Stroud’s rookie campaign.
Stroud lacks the mobility and athleticism of a player like Richardson, so his ability to extend plays and add value with his legs is limited. I’m not exactly giving any home field advantage for the Texans, so I’d expect this line to be more like -2 / -2.5 for the Colts on the road.
Seattle Seahawks at Detroit Lions
The Seahawks travel to Detroit to play the Lions on the heels of a surprising defeat to the Los Angeles Rams at Lumen Field. The Lions are coming off a thrilling opening night victory against the Kansas City Chiefs.
That being said, I think we have one of the bigger overreaction spots here as the Seahawks opened up as six-point underdogs in this one. The preseason line for this matchup was -2.5 and the Lions were a few Kadarius Toney drops away from losing the game against the Chiefs.
The market agreed with the sentiment pushing this down to +4.5 or +5 at most places. I bet the +6 but would not recommend taking anything under that number. The Seahawks lost both of their starting tackles in Week 1 and Geno Smith under pressure is not going to yield positive results.
That being said, I still believe the Seahawks have one of the better wide receiver cores in the NFL and should be able to take advantage of an overperforming Lions secondary that allowed way too many openings to the Chiefs, who just didn’t capitalize on opportunity.
My bet in this one is going to be the Lions team total over 26.5, which you can find at -110 in a few spots across the market. Seattle was very bad against the pass last week and I think the Lions air attack is even more potent than the Rams.
This is an interesting matchup where the Seahawks don’t really match up well to stop the Lions, but also could continue to struggle offensively with their weak offensive line. Rather than take the Seahawks at a worse number, I think the best way to play this is to target the Lions over.
The Seahawks were the 2nd-worst defense in expected points added and were the 3rd worst in yards allowed per attempt. The Seahawks also generated just 3 pressures against a lackluster Rams offensive line, good for 2nd worse in the league as well.
While we don’t want to overreact too much to an absolute dud Week 1 performance by Seattle, the warning signs are there that the wheels could fall off this team. The Lions should have a field day on offense, and I’d expect Jared Goff and company to easily cover their 26.5-point total.