Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports


Upon Further Review: Our Picks for Week 2

Sep 15, 2016 at 2:23 PM


Another football season is upon us, and Week 1 is in the books. Between the nearly incessant footage of Cam getting smacked in the head, Kap's National Anthem controversy, the excitement of a game winning 2-point conversion, and a 3 touchdown rally from Alex Smith, the season's opening week did not disappoint.

Week 2 kicks off tonight, and features some intriguing match ups. Here is where we think they'll shake out (skip to the end if you're here for our breakdown on 49ers/Panthers):

NY Jets (-1) at Buffalo:
Sometimes, just sometimes, a Thursday Night Football game proves to be compelling, thrilling and entirely worth prime time placement. This is not one of those times. Jets' QB Ryan Fitzpatrick is professionally ineffective, and the talented, but victory averse Bills just can't seem to string together 4 quarters of good football. Usually the best team wins. In this case, the least crappy team won't lose. BUFFALO

Tennessee at Detroit (-6):
No Megatron, no problem? Not so fast, kids. Marcus Mariota has quietly become a competent passer...and with Tajae Sharpe at his disposal and a suddenly stout defense that smashed Adrian Peterson last week, this may not be open and shut. If the Titans can slow down Detroit's passing game and limit turnovers...this one might be close. Closer than 6 points, anyway. TENNESSEE

Kansas City at Houston (-2.5):
Defense has never been Houston's problem. Now, it looks like their offense might be catching up. Lamar Miller, Brock Osweiler and Will Fuller give the Texans offensive facets that they didn't have last season. If Alex Smith and Co get off to another slow start, they may not be able to engineer a 3 TD comeback late against a very good Texans defense. HOUSTON

Miami at New England (-6.5):
The Dolphins could f*ck up a wet dream. They had Seattle on the ropes, then folded like a bad poker hand late in the game (which seems to be their thing). New England, on the other hand, has been the best run, best coached, and most successful franchise in the NFL over the last 14 years. Guess what's going to happen in Foxboro this weekend? NEW ENGLAND

Baltimore (-6.5) at Cleveland:
There are universal truths in the world: it's dark at night. Pissing into the wind is a bad idea. Eating three day old, room temp chow mein is a REALLY bad idea. Oh, and the Cleveland Browns suck at football. A little harsh? Perhaps. But with their new franchise quarterback broken into a zillion pieces (again) and their best receiver serving a suspension for failure to avoid his gravity bong...it's true. BALTIMORE

Cincinnati at Pittsburgh (-3.5):
The more things change, the more they stay the same. The Bengals have been trying to supplant the Steelers as the top dog in their division for years. Until they find a way to contain Antonio Brown, that's probably not going to happen. The Steelers love their home field...and while the Bengals were able to smack around the hapless Jets last week, they'll find this week's opponent a little tougher to overcome. PITTSBURGH

Dallas at Washington (-2.5):
Washington is not a very good football team. Fortunately, they're at home against a team starting a rookie QB who will be playing in his first NFL road game. Prescott was passable at home against a so-so Giants team. That's probably not happening on the road. WASHINGTON

New Orleans at NY Giants (-4.5):
The Saints don't have much of a defense. Fortunately for them, they do have a new "go to" receiver named Willie Snead. This kid is a monster...and the Giants do not have a DB that can match up with him one on one. If this turns into a shootout (which it should) Brees has the juice to keep this one close. NEW ORLEANS

Tampa Bay at Arizona (-6.5):
Am I the only person in the NFL watching world that thinks Carson Palmer is overrated? The Cardinals O-line is just okay...and don't look now, but Tampa Bay has quietly put together a competent defense led by tackle machine Kwon Alexander. If this comes down to Larry Fitzgerald having to do it by himself again, this one will be closer than people think. TAMPA BAY

Seattle (-6.5) at Los Angeles:
The Rams suck. Perhaps Coach Fisher should stop worrying about the 7-9 bulls**t, and start sweating the 1-15 bullsh**t. SEATTLE

Indianapolis at Denver (-6):
The Broncos' defense is good enough to win games by itself. Especially at home. Luck is much improved, has great weapons, and has matured as a NFL passer...but none of that will matter if he's on his back for the entire game. DENVER

Atlanta at Oakland (-5):
The Raiders nearly lost on the road to a very explosive Saints offense. The Falcons are hardly the offensive powerhouse that the Saints are...and with their heretofore AWOL running game, it is difficult to see them going toe-to-toe with a suddenly competent, aggressive, brass-balled Raiders squad and keeping it inside a touchdown. OAKLAND

Jacksonville at San Diego (-3):
The Jacksonville Jaguars are better than advertised, especially on offense. Hurns, Robinson and Thomas are a cadre of weapons that, coupled with Blake Bortles, create a passing attack that nearly came away with an upset against what may be the best team in the NFC. San Diego is...San Diego (which is German for "crappy football"...or "whale vagina" depending on context). JACKSONVILLE

Green Bay (-2.5) at Minnesota:
Minnesota took advantage of the Titans' miscues last week and turned them into 14 points. That's not going to happen this week. The Vikes will need Adrian Peterson to carry the offense...especially with Shaun Hill knuckle-balling the rock from under center. The Vikings defense is good...but Aaron Rodgers is the best quarterback in the NFL not named Tom Brady...and he's going to be the difference in this one. GREEN BAY

Philadelphia at Chicago (-3):
Rookie QB. Road game. That's a tall order...even against a team that sucks as hard as the Bears. CHICAGO

San Francisco at Carolina (-13.5):
Last week, the 49ers stunned the football watching world with an absolute beatdown of the once and current Los Angeles Rams. The stars of the show were the 49er defense...and an offensive line that looks completely re-invented from the unit that stunk up the field for much of last season. The 49ers defensive line (especially Buckner, Armstead, and Dial) controlled the line of scrimmage all night along, allowing the linebacking corps to flow to the ball with ease. This week, the 49ers draw the Panthers...who some think could be headed back to the Super Bowl. Their offense is centered around a zone read attack featuring Cam Newton and Jonathan Stewart...and receiving matchup nightmares Greg Olsen and Kelvin Benjamin. On the defensive side of the ball, they've got a nasty front 7, built around perennial Pro-Bowl MLB Luke Kuechly.

While it has only been one week, the 49ers have shown improvement in quality of play from last season...albeit against inferior opposition. This week, the 49ers will need to play a perfect game to pull out a win...and I'm just not sure that they'll be able to do that on a short week against a high quality opponent. That stated, I do believe that the 49ers will show up ready to play...and that they'll keep it within 10 points. They probably won't win this one...but they won't lose by 14, either. Give me the 49ers and the points. SAN FRANCISCO

Poll

  • Will the 49ers pull out a win in Carolina?
  • Hell, yeah! We're back, baby!
    63%
  • What are you smoking?
    16%
  • I miss Jim Harbaugh, even if he does eat boogers.
    13%
  • Sure. On my XBOX.
    8%
  • 596 votes
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


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