By Eric Jacinto, Matt Koontz and Mike B
Welcome back to another week of picks by the three Amigos of NFL Pick'em. Let's take a look at how the three of us did in the first week of the season. I will post the results followed by our picks and in bold the ones we each got right.
Week 1 Results:
Bold = Got the our Pick right
Philadelphia Eagles 18 Atlanta Falcons 12
Eric's Pick: Falcons, Matt's Pick: Falcons, Mike's Pick: Falcons
Baltimore Ravens 47 Buffalo Bills 3
Eric's Pick: Ravens, Matt's Pick: Ravens, Mike's Pick: Ravens
Pittsburgh Steelers 21 Cleveland Browns 21 OT
Eric's Pick: Steelers, Matt's Pick: Browns, Mike's Pick: Browns since it was a tie we all get the loss.
Cincinnati Bengals 34 Indianapolis Colts 23
Eric's Pick: Colts, Matt's Pick: Bengals, Mike's Pick: Bengals
Miami Dolphins 27 Tennessee Titans 20
Eric's Pick: Dolphins, Matt's Pick: Dolphins, Mike's Pick: Titans
Minnesota Vikings 24 San Francisco 49ers 16
Eric's Pick: 49ers, Matt's Pick: Vikings, Mike's Pick: Vikings
New England Patriots 27 Houston Texans 20
Eric's Pick: Patriots, Matt's Pick: Texans, Mike's Pick: Texans
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 48 New Orleans Saints 40
Eric's Pick: Saints, Matt's Pick: Saints, Mike's Pick: Saints
Jacksonville Jaguars 20 New York Giants 15
Eric's Pick: Giants, Matt's Pick: Jaguars, Mike's Pick: Giants
Kansas City Chiefs 38 Los Angeles Chargers 28
Eric's Pick: Chargers, Matt's Pick: Chargers, Mike's Pick: Chargers
Washington Redskins 24 Arizona Cardinals 6
Eric's Pick: Cardinals, Matt's Pick: Cardinals, Mike's Pick: Cardinals
Carolina Panthers 16 Dallas Cowboys 8
Eric's Pick: Panthers, Matt's Pick: Panthers, Mike's Pick: Panthers
Denver Broncos 27 Seattle Seahawks 24
Eric's Pick: Broncos, Matt's Pick: Seahawks, Mike's Pick: Seahawks
Green Bay Packers 24 Chicago Bears 23
Eric's Pick: Packers, Matt's Pick: Packers, Mike's Pick: Bears
New York Jets 48 Detroit Lions 17
Eric's Pick: Lions, Matt's Pick: Lions, Mike's Pick: Jets
Los Angeles Rams 33 Oakland Raiders 13
Eric's Pick: Rams, Matt's Pick: Rams, Mike's Pick: Rams
Eric's Season/Week 1 Record: 7-9
Matt's Season/Week 1 Record: 8-8
Mike's Season/Week 1 Record: 6-10
Matt is the winner for week 1
Week 2 Pick'em:
Week 2 NFL Predictions: Week 1 came and went, shocking us in some aspects. The Panthers will be without Greg Olsen for a handful of weeks as he suffered fractures in his foot. The Titans lost Delanie Walker for the season due to an ankle injury. The Falcons defense has taken 2 major blows as Deion Jones will be out for at least 8 weeks with a foot injury and Keanu Neal will miss the entire season after tearing his ACL last Thursday. The injury bug is striking some crucial players in the NFL already and once again they are mostly lower body as we keep protecting the upper body. The NFL is run by the wrong guy and it continues to show in the new rules. One new rule really impacted some games this weekend and made football nearly unwatchable and that rule is the personal foul for landing with your bodyweight on a QB. It is absolutely pathetic. They already are the most protected and highest paid position in the league how much more do you need to do for them. Anyway, rant over week 2 predictions coming at you. Matt K
Thursday, September 13, 2018, 8:20pm ET, (NBC)
Baltimore Ravens, (1-0) @ Cincinnati Bengals, (1-0)
This is an old fashion AFC North battle on Thursday night between the Ravens and the Bengals. Both teams are coming off wins in their first game of the season. The Ravens basically murdered the Buffalo Bills, 47-3 and the Bengals got a late pick six to win, 34-23 over the Indianapolis Colts. This is a toss up since it's a short week and a divisional game. I see the Bengals winning a defensive battle. Final Score: Bengals 14 - Ravens 13, Eric J
Both teams looked sharp last week, but both teams played a far less superior team. The Bengals win was more impressive because they beat Andrew Luck in Indy. The AJ Green and Andy Dalton connection looks to be in full form already which is trouble for any teams with a less talented secondary like the Colts. The Ravens though are a top 3 defense in the league and will show that this week against a much better team than the Bills of last week. Holding the Bills to 3 points isn’t really an achievement this season especially at home against the Bills. Joe Flacco looked elite as he is healthy for the first time in at least 3 years and they gave him a WR corps finally during the offseason. The Ravens do have Hayden Hurst still to unleash upon the league and once they do they might become a true threat to be a AFC champion if their offensive line can hold which is the only worry I have about this roster. This game should be close but I expect Marvin Lewis to choke in primetime late and the Ravens get some late room for a win. Final Score: Ravens 26 - Bengals 21; Matt K
There a few certainties in life and in football. Bill Belichick press conferences will never be filled with information. Night Train Lane would have been suspended for life in today's NFL due to his aggressive and physical style o play. Marvin Lewis' Cincinnati Bengals struggle in the national spotlight. This week, as the Baltimore Ravens head to Cincinnati to take on Marvin Lewis and the Bengals on Thursday Night Football, I expect Lewis' struggles to rear their head again. While both of these teams are coming off of impressive wins, only one will start the season 2-0. This is a fight for the division lead as the Steelers and Browns tied to open the season, and both teams want to make a statement. The Ravens want to show that their week one performance was not an anomaly, and the Bengals want to prove that they can win in prime time. Who will win this week in Cincinnati?
I have to go with the Ravens in this one. Throughout Marvin Lewis' tenure as head coach, Bengals teams have come out flat in the national spotlight and dropped the vast majority of games. The quarterback doesn't matter. The roster doesn't matter. One standard theme is that Marvin Lewis and the Bengals play flat and conservative on national television. Therefore, I have to pick Baltimore to win this game. As a life-time Bengals fan, I hope that Marvin Lewis sees this post and puts it up in the locker room, using it to fuel a Bengals victory. However, that is unlikely to happen. I have to pick the Ravens.
Final score: Ravens 35 - Bengals 14; Mike B
Sunday, September 16, 2018:
(1pm ET Games)
Carolina Panthers, (1-0) @ Atlanta Falcons, (0-1), (Fox):
The Falcons host their division rival, the Carolina Panthers in their home opener after coming off a nail bitter in the season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles last Thursday night. The Panthers are coming off a 16-8 win over the Dallas Cowboys. The Falcons will win a shootout to even their record at 1-1.
Final Score: Falcons 30 - Panthers 23; Eric J
The Falcons will need to find some redzone scores if they want to win games. I am starting to buy into Collin Cowherd’s comparisons to Andy Dalton for Matt Ryan. The Panthers defense made Dak and Zeke look like nothing. I would like to see the Panthers offense get DJ Moore more involved as he is ready to contribute, and Cam needs a more explosive threat. The Panthers will exploit theloss of Deion Jones and Keanu Neal this weekend.
Final Score: Panthers 23 - Falcons 20; Matt K
This is an important divisional matchup that could have some big playoff implications, but the Falcons are simply better at home, and need a big game this week. Falcons win. Final score: Falcons 28, Panthers 27. - Mike B
Indianapolis Colts, (0-1) @ Washington Redskins, (1-0), (CBS):
Andrew Luck leads the Colts into the Nation's Capital to play Alex Smith and the Washington Redskins. The Skins, will win in overtime with a game-winning field goal.
Final Score: Redskins 20 Colts 17 OT; Eric J
The Colts offense needs more weapons. They have no true RB, no true good tight end, and only 1 great WR. Luck doesn’t have much of an offensive line in front of him and it will prevent them from winning many games this year. The Redskins offense might be missing Guice, but Alex Smith continues to look impressive no matter where he goes. I am not sold yet on the Skins, but they looked good week 1 against a solid Arizona defense.
Final Score: Redskins 32 - Colts 27; Matt K
I don't trust either of these teams, but I trust Adrian Peterson to put up a big game against the Colts so-called defense. Redskins win this one at home....and then you want to trade Adrian Peterson as his value peaks. Final score: Redskins 17, Colts 14. Mike B
Houston Texans, (0-1) @ Tennessee Titans, (0-1), (CBS):
An AFC South battle between the Texans and Titans in which both teams loss in their opener. The Texans, will go into Tennessee and win a defensive battle.
Final Score: Texans 16 - Titans 14; Eric J
Marcus Mariota was beat up week 1 as he has been his whole career thus far. He is a go this week but with Watt and Clowney coming at him I would be worried if I was a Titans fan. Their WR’s need to help Mariota out especially without Delanie Walker around. The Texans started last week in Foxboro way too slow to beat Tom Brady, but they could easily win this weekend as long as Watson gets going early and fast. No Delanie and no WR’s breaking open mean the Titans lose big. Final Score: Texans 30 - Titans 13; Matt K
The Texans are still a good team even after losing to the Patriots in week 1. I expect them to beat the Titans this week. Final score: Texans 24, Titans 14. - Mike B
Philadelphia Eagles, (1-0) @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers, (1-0), (FOX):
The Eagles, are coming off ten days rest as they go into Tampa Bay to face the Buccaneers who are coming off a shootout victory against the New Orleans Saints. Nick Foles will have a much better game than he did against the Falcons as he leads the Eagles to a blowout win.
Final Score: Eagles 38 - Buccaneers 17; Eric J
The Buccaneers impressed everyone last week and Ryan Fitz made a case for Winston to ride the bench when he returns from his suspension. If Fitz can do it again this week he might truly make the push for the starting job a legit threat. The Eagles are a good team and Nick Foles is leading them again this week against a terrible pass defense. I don’t like the Eagles WR’s much, but they get the job done enough. Final Score: Eagles 24 - Buccaneers 20; Matt K
Ryan Fitzpatrick had his big game for the season and now faces a top tier defense with Philly. Eagles win this one. Final score: Eagles 28, Buccaneers 3. - Mike B
Kansas City Chiefs, (1-0) @ Pittsburgh Steelers, (0-0-1), (CBS):
The Steelers, are coming of a tie against the Browns in week one and look to balance back in their home opener against the Chiefs. I see the Steelers winning a shootout to get their first win. Final Score: Steelers 34 - Chiefs 28; Eric J
The Steelers are in TROUBLE. Ben isn’t the elite QB he used to be, and their defense isn’t as stellar as all the so-called experts claim it is. They tied the Browns last week and people can say it was because they didn’t have Bell, but that is just a pathetic and weak excuse because James Conner had a great game in his place. The Chiefs shocked me a bit last week with their overall domination of the Chargers. Patrick Mahomes is the real deal as I have been saying since college years and he will become a top 5 QB by the end of the 2019 season. I love what the Chiefs have this year even more than I thought previously.
Final Score: Chiefs 28 - Steelers 23; Matt K
If the Steelers were healthy with no locker room drama, then they would win this game hands-down. However, the Steelers are dealing with an injured Roethlisberger and a missing Bell. KC sneaks out with a win this week. Final score: Chiefs 28, Steelers 24. - Mike B
Miami Dolphins, (1-0) @ New York Jets, (1-0), (CBS):
It's an AFC East showdown as the Miami Dolphins battle their rivals the New York Jets; both teams are coming off week one wins. Also it's the home debut of Sam Donald the third overall pick in this past draft. Donald and the Jets win a close game to improve to 2-0.
Final Score: Jets 23 - Dolphins 21; Eric J
The Dolphins are a better team than most people thought and played a crazy game last week that lasted over 7 hours total due to over 4 hours of storm delays. Tannehill is healthy and that could be huge for them this year, but we need to see more out of him to be convinced of that. The Jets have the best rookie QB and he is a monster. He took advantage of Matt Stafford declining and showed how much talent Darnold has. Darnold is going to take this team to a better season than last year and their defense is scary fast to the ball.
Final Score: Jets 25 - Dolphins 16; Matt K
This is a divisional matchup that could go either way, but the Jets looked solid in week 1. I expect them to start out the season 2-0. Final score: Jets 24, Dolphins 17. - MIke B
Los Angeles Chargers, (0-1) @ Buffalo Bills, (0-1), (CBS):
The Bills are coming off a 44 point embarrassing loss to the Ravens in week one. They host the LA Chargers in their home opener. Josh Allen, the eighth overall pick in this past draft makes his first career start, he made his NFL debut last week when he came in the fourth quarter as the game was well in hand. Allen will lead the Bills to a close victory and even their record at 1-1.
Final Score: Bills 24 - Chargers 23, (Upset Alert); Eric J
The Bills made a massive mistake for starting Nathan Peterman. The Bills defense didn’t do much last week and are a cause for concern. The Bills are the worst team in the league and are going to be that way all season long. Josh Allen will struggle this year but hopefully they don’t throw in the towel on him while he struggles. He will develop and become a good QB in the league if they are patient with him. The Chargers on the other hand have the roster to win it all this year. The only issue is Joey Bosa’s toughness is something I am starting to question. He seems to be injured often and missing games for a bone bruise comes down to toughness for me. The Chargers will bounce back big time this week and win this game big.
Final Score: Chargers 32 - Bills 10; Matt K
The Bills are not a good football team right now, and Josh Allen is not the answer to beating the Chargers defense. Chargers win. Final score: Chargers 24, Bills 17. - Mike B
Minnesota Vikings, (1-0) @ Green Bay Packers, (1-0), (FOX):
We get an early NFC battle between the Vikings and Packers; both are coming off victories in week one. Aaron Rodgers, was the hero last Sunday night as he lead the Packers back from 17 down in the fourth against the Chicago Bears. Rodgers, left in the first half on a cart with a left knee injury and played the entire second half basically on one leg. The Packers, win a close one and Rodgers as another amazing game. Final Score: Packers 23 - Vikings 20; Eric J
The Packers made one of the most impressive comebacks I have ever seen last week and did so because Aaron Rodgers returned to the game and showed that he truly is one of the best of all time. Rodgers is questionable this week and if he doesn’t play I will edit my pick for sure. The Vikings defense proved they are poised to lead the league in takeaways. They made Garrapolo look terrible. Kirk Cousins will get better with this team as he gets more used to them. For now, with Rodgers playing, Final Score: Packers 23 - Vikings 21; Matt K
It's early in the season, but this is a must win game for the Vikings, with Rodgers playing on limited practice reps. Minnesota takes care of business this week. Final score: Vikings 21, Packers 20. - Mike B
Cleveland Browns, (0-0-1) @ New Orleans Saints, (0-1), (FOX):
The Saints, host the Browns who are looking to get their first win since December 24, 2016 when they defeated the then San Diego Chargers, 20-17. The Browns, will come up short again as they will get blown out. Final Score: Saints 35 - Browns 14; Eric J
The Saints defense was supposed to be impressive this year, but last week we saw them exploited by the speed of DJAX and strength of Evans. The Browns will test the Saints defense this week as well with a mobile QB, a speedy Josh Gordon, and the hands of Jarvis Landry. The Browns surprised everyone when they tied the Steelers. They aren’t a playoff team yet, but they are getting close. This game could be fun to watch. Final Score: Saints 30 - Browns 26; Matt K
The Browns will surprise a lot of people and make this a close matchup, but they don't have the firepower to win this one. They should have beat the Steelers last week, but the Saints have less drama and will take care of business. Final score: Saints 28, Browns 24. - Mike B
4:05pm ET, Detroit Lions, (0-1) @ San Francisco 49ers, (0-1), (FOX):
The Lions, played pretty awful in their home opener on Monday night against the New York Jets as they lost 48-17. It was the debut of Sam Donald, Jets' rookie Quarterback as he threw for 198 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. The Interception came on his very first past that was taken for a touchdown. I don't see it getting any better for the Lions as they travel to the west coast and play the 49ers in their home opener. The 49ers,, blow out the Lions to get their first win. Final Score: 49ers 34 - Lions 14
I saw pieces of greatness in Jimmy G last week but then saw moments of Kyle Boller in Jimmy as well last week. There were times where Jimmy was staring down his receiver the entire time without looking off a defender or checking his other options which will get him eaten alive in this league. Jimmy is a slightly above average QB and hopefully won’t stare down anyone being covered by Darius Slay this weekend because that will lead to more INT’s. The Lions better hope their team isn’t as trash as they seemed on Monday night because that was downright embarrassing. 5 INTs thrown and 4 of them by one of the highest paid QB’s in the league. Stafford hasn’t won a playoff game and gets paid an insane amount of money, he better catch fire this weekend against the 49ers. Final Score: 49ers 30 - Lions 17; Matt K
This will be a nice rebound game for Jimmy G. He struggled against the Vikings, but he will have a big game against the Lions, who are, by all accounts, a team in turmoil. Final score; 49ers 24, Lions 13. Mike B
4:05pm ET, Arizona Cardinals, (0-1) @ Los Angeles Rams, (1-0), (FOX):
The Rams host the Cardinals in their home opener. I don't see this game being close at all as the Rams will roll all over the Cardinals. Final Score: Rams 45 - Cardinals 10; Eric J
The Rams were sleeping in the first half last week, but once they woke up we saw what the best team in the league looks like. The Rams are going to continue to improve if they stay healthy too as their new pieces grow together. This team is going to be exciting to watch all year. Cardinals fans I am sorry you paid Sam Bradford so much money and are going to go nowhere. He is far from a solution and your defense needs to step it up if they want to even have shots in games against middle of the pack teams. Final Score: Rams 34 - Cardinals 17; Matt K
I'm really excited for this game. The Cardinals have some nice pieces but the Rams are the all-around better team. With Rosen, they may win this one. However, since Bradford gets the start, Rams win. Final score: Rams 35, Cardinals 14. - Mike B
4:25pm ET, New England Patriots, (1-0) @ Jacksonville Jaguars, (1-0), (CBS):
In the game of the weekend/season so far we get the rematch of the AFC Championship game as the Jacksonville Jaguars host the New England Patriots in their home opener. The Jaguars, were a half away from going to the Super-Bowl but loss 24-20 as the Patriots stormed back in the second half. The Jags, had 14-10 lead at halftime and a 17-10 lead heading into the fourth quarter. It was a heart-breaking loss for the Jags and their fans and now they look for the payback. I believe the Jags, get their payback and win at home.
Final Score: Jaguars 28 - Patriots 24; Eric J
The Patriots looked good last week which I was worried they wouldn’t with Edelman and Malcom Butler both gone. Good ol’ Belichick keeps on winning with whatever his roster has on it as long as it has Tom Brady on it. The Jaguars on the other hand have a QB I do not trust and Fournette might be missing this weekend due to a hamstring issue. If they don’t have Fournette we could see a blowout. I still expect the Pats to go 2-0 with or without Fournette on the Jaguars side though because Blake Bortles is far from elite.
Final Score: Patriots 24 - Jaguars 16; Matt K
This is the game the Jaguars have been waiting for all season. They pull off a win this time after nearly beating Belichick and Brady in the playoffs. Nice game ahead for TJ Yeldon. Final score; Jaguars 24, Patriots 23 - Mike B
4:25pm ET, Oakland Raiders, (0-1) @ Denver Broncos, (1-0), (CBS):
Jon Gruden, made his return to the NFL coaching ranks as and it wasn't the outcome he was hoping for as the Raiders got blown out at home to the LA Rams on Monday Night Football. The Broncos, will win a close game as Gruden will after wait another week to get his first win in over a decade. Final Score: Broncos 21 - Raiders 16; Eric J
The terrible commentary crew on Monday night made it seem like the Raiders were the best team in the league because their buddy John Gruden was head coach. They are not. The team is missing elements now without a top pass rusher on the roster and Derek Carr just doesn’t look like he did 2 years ago. The Broncos on the other hand are paying a system QB millions to throw 3 INTS to a questionable secondary, and its okay to the media because Elway made that decision so why question him? This game could be a messy one and really has no meaning in the end to this division as these are the 3rd and 4th place teams of this division when the season is over. Final Score: Broncos 21 - Raiders 17; Matt K
The Broncos have a huge home field advantage early in the season as teams work their way towards mid-season conditioning form. I think Denver takes advantage of this and pulls off a win in week 2. Final score: Broncos 35, Raiders 14. - Mike B
8:20pm ET, New York Giants, (0-1) @ Dallas Cowboys, (0-1), (NBC):
Eli Manning and the New York Giants travel to Big D to play Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football. The Cowboys struggled on offense last week against the Carolina Panthers as they only scored one touchdown. The Giants, will win by two touchdowns as the Cowboys offense will once struggle to score points.
Final Score: Giants 24 - Cowboys 10; Eric J
Well no shock here that these two are 0-1. Zeke couldn’t run last week against a stingy Carolina defense, and Dak continues to prove he isn’t that special without a top WR and his running game dominating. Zeke should get some running room though in this game and honestly so should Dak which is great news for the Cowboys as Dak will be able to scramble and throw his 6-yard passes. The Giants need to see more out of Eli who missed some open shots last weekend. They also need more than just a 60-yard run from Saquon to make an impact. People see his stats last week and say wow he had a great game, but in reality, if you take out his one big run he averaged 2.23 yard a carry. That is horrible, and they need more granted he can only do so much with that offensive line in front of him. This game doesn’t really excite me and I personally am tired of this matchup every year on SNF.
Final Score: Cowboys 27 - Giants 23; Matt K
NFC East divisional game means flip a coin because this game could go either way. I think the Giants are actually a slightly better team, and should come out with a win after keeping it close with the Jaguars in week 1. Final score: Giants 21, Cowboys 20. - Mike B
Monday, September 17, 2018:
8:15pm ET, Seattle Seahawks, (0-1) @ Chicago Bears, (0-1), ESPN):
Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks go to Chicago and play the Bears on Monday Night Football. The Bears, are coming off a tough loss, they blew a 17 point-fourth quarter lead to their hated rivals the Green Bay Packers. The Seahawks, will win this by double-digits as they get their first win of the season. Final Score: Seahawks 27 - Bears 17; Eric J
Seattle failed to impress me last week and I expected more from their offense. Without Doug Baldwin and an offensive line though we can only expect so much, and I believe Russell Wilson is in big trouble this weekend against Khalil Mack with his terrible line in front of him. The Bears had the Packers game in hand and then let one man come in and destroy them. The Bears need to play a full 60 minutes in this one and if they do they will pick up a win and be moving in the right direction. Final Score: Bears 21 - Seahawks 20; Matt K
I have faith in the Bears defense after the addition of Khalil Mack. Seattle looked like a team in transition in week one, and may struggle this week. That should give the Bears an edge at home on Monday night. Final score: Bears 21, Seahawks 20.--Mike B.