Week 1 of the NFL preseason saw its usual array of unpredictable results. Other elements like Baltimore winning and covering spread remaining intact and so did Dallas failing to win and beat the spread in August football.
Looking ahead, we're caught in a weird situation compared to the past and we have to keep our ears and eyes open to what lies ahead this week.
It used for those of us in the NFL previews and predictions business, Week 2 saw starters play anywhere from one quarter to start the game to somewhere into the second quarter. There is no guarantee that will happen anymore as coaches thinking has changed, doing whatever possible to limit injuries to starters. Of course, this holds back skills like tackling overall the first few weeks of the regular season, which has become extremely noticeable, particularly in the secondary or in the open field. To complain about it will not change a thing, we just move on as football bettors.
Still, the sportsbooks are expecting scoring up this week with more starters close to previous levels, just not the same volume as before. This is shown in the totals. Last week only two totals were as high as 38 points. For Week 2, only one game is on the '30s for a total, with the others ranging from 40 to 46 points, with means roughly another six to seven total points on average.
Philadelphia at Jacksonville (-3, 35) Best Line: MyBookie
Both these teams come in off embarrassing losses last week and will seek to turn their situations around with a better effort. Look for the Eagles to rebound quicker. Eagles win 20-16.
Green Bay at Baltimore (-4.5, 38.5) - Best Line: Intertops
We know John Harbaugh is money in the NFL preseason and so does the online sportsbooks listed here. But when the total is between 35.5 and 42 points, Harbaugh and Baltimore are remarkable 20-4 ATS. Ravens win/cover 26-17 (Consider OVER also).
Chicago at N.Y. Giants (-1.5, 42) Best Line: America's Bookie
Giants passing offense carved up the Jets last week. That won't happen against Chicago. Also, road teams after scoring 14 points or less, against opponent after scoring 30 points or more, are 27-9 ATS. Bears win 23-20 (Upset Special).
Miami at Tampa Bay (-3.5, 44) Best Line: MyBookie
Miami's in for a long season and Tampa Bay could be improved under coach Bruce Arians. Dolphins are 2-11 ATS when over .500 vs. an under .500 foe, who's off a loss. Buccaneers win/cover 27-20 (Best Bet).
Cleveland at Indianapolis (-3, 43) Best Line: Intertops
The world still loves Cleveland at the moment, but Indianapolis gave a real dull effort at Buffalo and plays better at home against a Browns team that is 1-7 ATS off a double-digit victory. Colts win/cover 24-17.
New England (-3, 40.5) at Tennessee Best Line: JazzSports
Underestimated Patriots desire at Detroit after losing there last season. It's back to normal for New England who is 1-10 ATS as a road favorite of seven points or less. Titans win 20-19.
Detroit at Houston (-4, 42.5) Best Line: MyBookie
Detroit could not have played any worse last week at home and they are far more competitive on the road in H-Town. Houston wins in non-cover 19-17.
New Orleans at L.A. Chargers (-3, 44) Best Line: JazzSports
Taking New Orleans who is 31-15 ATS as a road underdog and 11-2 ATS away games after allowing six or more yards a play in their earlier contest. Saints win 27-20.
Seattle at Minnesota (-4, 42) Best Line: MyBookie
Minnesota coach Mike Zimmer is 15-7 ATS in NFLX, but Seattle's Pete Carroll is 24-12 ATS and catching points. Minnesota wins in non-cover 21-20.
San Francisco at Denver (-2, 42.5) Best Line: Bovada
Great spot for Denver who is 8-1 ATS off a SU loss as a favorite and facing an opponent off a SU win. Denver win/cover 24-17.
Last week: 5-5 SU and 4-6 ATS Season Record: 6-5 SU and 5-6 ATS Upset Special: 0-1 Best Bets: 0-1