We're back for Week 2 NFL Picks. I struggled a bit last week as I went 6-9 against the spread. Too many random upsets and close contests cost me. From a purely straight-up standpoint, I was 10-5, so I suppose that counts as a good thing. Moving forward I'll track both straight-up and against the spread.
The 49ers face a Lions team that took an early lead last season, but came up short in a thrilling finish. While I do think the Lions are a tough competitor, I also really like this matchup for the 49ers. The Lions are dealing with a banged up secondary, which would benefit a passing attack that has to be gaining confidence by the day. More importantly in my mind, the 49ers decimated the Lions on the ground last year. The Lions will make adjustments, but I would imagine the 49ers will have some counter-adjustments of their own.
Amidst all these adjustments, I really do think the 49ers should be able to handle this Lions squad. I don't expect a blow-out, but I think the 49ers have the talent and coaching to win this one relatively decisively. A two score win does not seem out of the realm of the possible. Obviously I would prefer the -6.5 over -7, but I am comfortable enough with this team that I would still take that touchdown difference (if sports gambling was legal!). It could turn into a repeat of last year's thriller, but I just don't get that sense right now. I'd imagine this will bite me in the butt, but fingers crossed!
Head after the jump for a rundown of my picks this week. All odds were taken from Bovada via the SB Nation NFL Odds page. Make sure and also check out Joel Thorman's picks. He has the 49ers winning, but not covering.
Chicago @ Green Bay (-6): Packers cover
Kansas @ Buffalo (-3.5): Bills cover
New Orleans (-2.5) @ Carolina: Saints cover
Cleveland @ Cincinnati (-7): Bengals cover
Minnesota (-1.5) @ Indianapolis: Colts win outright
Houston (-7) @ Jacksonville: Texans cover
Oakland (-3) @ Miami: Raiders cover
Arizona @ New England (-14): Patriots cover
Tampa Bay @ NY Giants (-9): Bucs cover, Giants win
Baltimore @ Philadelphia (-3): Ravens win outright
Dallas (-3) @ Seattle: Seahawks win outright
Washington (-3) @ St. Louis: Redskins cover
NY Jets @ Pittsburgh (-6): Steelers cover
Tennessee @ San Diego (-6): Chargers cover
Detroit @ San Francisco (-7): 49ers cover
Denver @ Atlanta (-3): Falcons cover
Versus the spread: 6-9-0