Overreaction Week went exceedingly well. I went 3-1 on the write-ups and added a couple of winners later. Will all weeks go that well? No.
This week is either going really well, or I’m going to feel so incredibly stupid on Sunday, and there’s no in-between. Without further ado, let’s get to my NFL Week 3 Picks, listed in order of confidence.
Falcons at Lions (-3):
Atlanta has been a run-dominant team the past two weeks and hasn’t had to play a really dynamic offense yet. They’ve looked good in spots but in two pretty easy games. As for Detroit, they came off of an embarrassing defensive performance where they couldn’t do just about anything. Offensively they were incredible, defensively not so much.
So that leaves us here. I really like Detroit to bounce back. I think the Atlanta offense presents so little threat through the air, and that’s how the Seahawks were able to attack this defense. Also, since last season Dan Campbell and Jared Goff have been excellent at home. They are averaging 36.5PPG at home in these games. Atlanta doesn’t have nearly the offensive firepower to put up that onslaught. Goff is much better in the dome and that shows.
If the Lions get up 14 points, or maybe even 10, I struggle to see how Atlanta comes back. I think this is a perfect bounce-back spot for the Lions here.
Patriots at Jets (+3)
I have put real-life dollars on Zach Wilson. I hate it, but I have no idea how the Patriots are three-point favorites in this game. I can see them winning this game, but covering the 3-point margin 50% of the time just seems crazy to me.
The Patriots have done a very good job of sticking around in their first two games. However, when the other team makes a mistake and tries to give the game to them, the Patriots have been unable to take advantage. The Eagles got up 16 and just coasted. The Dolphins did the same, and they were able to hold on.
Now, Zach Wilson sucks. I don’t see how he scores in this game. I will need Zach Wilson to make at least one scoring drive in this game, which is a scary thought. But the best unit in this game is the Jets defense. The Jets showed they can beat a good football team in Buffalo with their defense and special teams.
I think New England will struggle to generate offense and this game will be incredibly low-scoring, and go quickly. The under of 36 feels so low, but at the same time, I want to take the under. I will need the Jets' defense to force turnovers and make plays in this spot, giving Wilson short fields, or just putting points on the board, but I think they will do everything they can to keep this one close.
Cardinals TTU 15.5 (-115)
This one is simple. Cowboys eat alive bad offenses. The Cardinals are a bad offense. The Cowboys will eat them alive. I’ll keep riding this train until the Cowboys play someone even half-decent. I think Dallas covers the 12 and blows the doors off of the Cardinals.
Titans (+3.5) at Browns
The Browns are coming off of a short week after a Monday night game. Not only that but their star RB Nick Chubb got hurt in one of the worst injuries I’ve seen. The whole RB’s don’t matter movement has gained steam through the years, but I think even some of the truthers there would argue that Chubb matters.
Ryan Tannehill has been really bad this season. He’s made a couple of plays here and there, but largely he’s had a really rough season. That hasn’t stopped the Titans from being in two really competitive games against the Chargers and Saints. The Titans will grind this game to a halt, keep running the ball down your throats and make you stop Derrick Henry. This game will be quick and that favors the underdog.
Also, I think this has been overshadowed the last two weeks by different stories (Joe Burrow being worse and Nick Chubb’s injury), but Deshaun Watson has been awful. He hasn’t been good either. His mistakes were the reason that the Steelers were able to break through on Monday night. The Browns’ defense is legit, and the offense has been bad. Without Chubb, it’s only projected to get worse. Expecting that offense to win by over a FG in a game that should end pretty quickly is a big ask. This game will be close throughout, so I like the underdog here.
Panthers (+5.5) at Seahawks
One of my losses last week, a pick I gave out on Sunday, was the Lions. The Seahawks were missing their two starting tackles and I thought the Lions would be able to generate pressure and take the game over. They did not.
The Seahawks are still missing their left and right tackle, and I think Brian Burns will give them fits up front this week. I think those losses will really hurt this team this week. However, Andy Dalton is the starter this week for Carolina. Honestly, I don’t think it makes a huge difference vs. Bryce Young. Young is still growing as an NFL QB, but Dalton should be solid enough to keep this game within scoring reach. I don’t think he will make any mistake that takes Carolina out of this game.
Particularly with this injury report on the other side. Just keep this one close, Red Rifle.
Broncos (+6.5) at Dolphins
Of all the disgusting picks I’ve gone with so far, this one is easily the worst. Man, the Broncos have had two embarrassing performances that look really bad. They’ve lost these games because of some incredibly dumb penalties defensively. But their offense doesn’t look bad. They’ve been pretty efficient.
Wilson has looked good. Also, with the injury to Jaylen Waddle, so I’m not expecting to play, this allows Pat Surtain to shadow Tyreek Hill all game and make his day that much harder. Hill will get his, but the Dolphins will be relying on the likes of River Cracraft, Braxton Berrios and Durham Smythe through the air.
The Broncos have big play potential, and Wilson gets rid of the ball very quickly. The Miami defense hasn't looked particularly stout through two weeks and I think the Broncos will be able to put up points. It’s disgusting, but I think the Broncos will play in tons of close games this season, and that’s exactly what I project this to be.
With the number of dogs I've played here, I’m either going to feel sharper than sharp or like the biggest tool in the shed.