NFL Week 2 Team Totals Predictions and Odds

What we saw on Sunday was some evidence that a few of these teams around the National Football League are going to have a lot of trouble scoring, or a lot of trouble defending, at least until they get some things straight.

And that will give us some guidance when it comes to the "team total," that is, the number of points they are going to score in Sunday's game.

Last week we hit four out of five, which by all accounts, ain't too bad. Let's see if we can have similar success this week.

Read our NFL team total betting guide.

Best NFL Team Totals Picks for Week 2

Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns Preview

Time: Sunday, September 19th at 1 PM ET

Team Totals Odds:

Houston Texans - Over 17.5 points (-110) / Under 17.5 points (-120)

Cleveland Browns - Over 30.5 points (-115) / Under 30.5 points (-115)

The Play: TEXANS UNDER 17.5 (-120)

Houston had a resounding win over Jacksonville last week. In this case, that might not bode too well for the Texans, especially if that performance got Cleveland's attention.

Houston has a number of veteran running backs, and got a very good game from Mark Ingram last week (85 yards). They also got 132 receiving yards from Brandin Cooks, but won't find the sledding that smooth against the Browns, who may be emotionally a little drained from that come-from-ahead loss to Kansas City but still have the better stop unit.

Don't forget that Houston was able to benefit a great deal from the three interceptions tossed by first-time starter Trevor Lawrence. If they truly have less quality personnel than any team in the NFL (possible exception of J-Ville), this would be a situation where it got exposed. Can they stop Myles Garrett? Not likely.

Cincinnati Bengals at Chicago Bears Preview

Time: Sunday, September 19th at 1 PM ET

Team Totals Odds:

Cincinnati Bengals - Over 20.5 (-125) / Under 20.5 (-105)

Chicago Bears - Over 23.5 points (-115) / Under 23.5 points (-115)

The Play: BENGALS OVER 20.5 (-125)

What concerns us here - and what would concern anyone backing the Cincy side - is that Joe Burrow took five sacks last week in his return from ACL and MCL injuries. And the Bears, after all, can send some monsters at him, including Khalil Mack.

But after hearing all these reports in camp about how Burrow was overly tentative in favoring that knee, he hung in admirably, eventually delivering the OT victory over Minnesota. He connected with LSU teammate Ja'Marr Chase for 101 yards, including a 50-yard score. And this team has offensive balance - Joe Mixon had 127 yards on the ground, and there are those who feel as if he's going to break out big.

Burrow is likely going to be slinging it to the end, even if it is in pursuit of closing the "back door." The Bengals might not wind up stopping anyone, but they'll score.

Las Vegas Raiders at Pittsburgh Steelers Preview

Time: Sunday, September 19th at 1 PM ET

Team Totals Odds:

Las Vegas Raiders - Over 20.5 points (-115) / Under 20.5 points (-115)

Pittsburgh Steelers - Over 27 points (-115) / Under 27 points (-115)

The Play: STEELERS UNDER 27 (-115)

We won't deny that Pittsburgh has an explosive element with Chase Claypool, and the second-half comeback against the Bills last week was impressive. But there are still some things that are worrisome. For instance, the Steelers only had one offensive touchdown, and 251 yards of total offense.

So considering that the offensive line is still a work in progress in front of a QB that doesn't move like the one with last week's Raider opponent, and the Steelers can't necessarily count on running in a blocked punt every week, we'd rather side with a Pittsburgh "under" here than anything else.

Los Angeles Rams at Indianapolis Colts Preview

Time: Sunday, September 19th at 1 PM ET

Team Totals Odds:

Los Angeles Rams - Over 26.5 points (-115) / Under 26.5 points (-115)

Indianapolis Colts - Over 21.5 points (-120) / Under 21.5 points (-110)

The Play: COLTS UNDER 21.5 (-110)

The Rams' defense wasn't necessarily tested all that sternly by the Bears, but what they've demonstrated is that you are going to be handicapped against them if you have a pedestrian attack.

It wasn't out of line to think that Carson Wentz's move to Indy, and a reunion with his ex-offensive coordinator from Philly (Frank Reich) was a good thing. And it may indeed turn out to be that way. But although it may be useful that Indianapolis can run the ball with Jonathan Taylor, it is unfortunate that Wentz, with limited time in camp, isn't really ready yet to compete against defenses like this. And the Colts don't throw anyone out there on pass routes that should remotely scare this secondary.

Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Preview

Time: Sunday, September 19th at 4:05 PM ET

Team Totals Odds:

Atlanta Falcons - Over 19.5 points (-125) / Under 19.5 points (-105)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Over 33 points (-115) / Under 33 points (-115)

The Play: FALCONS OVER 19.5 (-125)

We don't like to go overboard on last week's results, but it is difficult to ignore the Falcons' non-performance against Philadelphia. Matt Ryan had 164 passing yards on 35 attempts. Atlanta did not cross the goal line. Prize rookie Kyle Pitts had an 18-yard reception, but only 13 yards the other seven times he was targeted. Ryan got sacked three times and was pressured a lot more. And the Bucs have the kind of defensive line that can control games.

So new head coach Arthur Smith needs solutions even faster than FedEx can deliver (see what we did with that?). Interestingly though, these Falcons did manage to score 27 points twice against this Tampa Bay stop unit last year, and the personnel is virtually the same. In fact, not since 2015 have they been held below 20 points in this series.

Truth be told, the Bucs allowed Dak Prescott to dink and dunk his way to 400 yards with virtually no running game. Not for nothing, but Atlanta did run for 124 yards last week. Ryan may have the material to put together a few scoring drives, even if he doesn't outduel Tom Brady.

About the Author

Charles Jay is unlike most analysts associated with handicapping and the gaming industry, in that he also has had extensive experience in the so-called "mainstream" media as well.

He has been involved with professional sports industry for almost two decades, working in all capacities, as a matchmaker, booking agent, manager, and also as an editorial consultant on USA Network's "Tuesday Night Fights," which, for a time, carried "Charles Jay's Line" on upcoming fights. As a broadcaster, he has called world title fights around the world for various outlets, and has served as a color commentator for Sunshine Network and Prime Network.

His radio experience includes being the host of numerous programs, including "Sportswatch with Charles Jay" on KDWN in Las Vegas, "Total Action" on WAXY 790 in Miami, and "Charles Jay's Winning Edge", syndicated into 55 markets by the American Radio Networks, and he's done podcasts on all subjects related to sports, gaming and popular culture.

Working within the casino industry, he has a special events consultant for Casino Magic in Mississippi, as that venue established itself in the early 1990s as a hotbed of boxing activity in particular. Prior to this, he had been engaged as a casino gaming columnist for, among others, Casino Player, Card Player and Sports Form (now known as Gaming Today), specializing in blackjack. And later on, his investigative series on boxing, entitled "Operation Cleanup," won him much critical acclaim, including the 2003 "Dignity" Award, in the category of "Best Sports Writer," as bestowed by the Retired Boxers Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to rendering assistance to ex-fighters in need.

In 2006 he established a content services division of his company, which has eventually evolved in JayWords, and he is arguably the world's most prolific sports & gaming writer, with over 20,000 articles to his credit, the vast majority of which have been sports handicapping pieces. So you might say he has analyzed as many sporting events as anyone alive during this period. He has also brought some interest with his so-called "gimmick" odds on special events, including the Academy Awards, the NFL Draft, and the Super Bowl, for which he posted dozens and dozens of different odds propositions with various sportsbooks.

This renaissance man is a winner of the Retired Boxers Foundation's "Dignity Award" and a member of the Florida Boxing Hall of Fame; graduate of the University of Miami (Florida) who currently resides in the South Florida area.