Week 1 of the 2021 NFL season was all about the underdog. Punters who relied on the favorites to lead them to victory were disappointed as a record number of underdogs covered the gap.
The Underdogs broke a Week 1 record when the Raiders covered (and won) against the Ravens in “Monday Night Football”. It was the 12th time in 16 NFL games that an underdog had covered the spread.
The previous Week 1 record was 11 wins, which has happened three times.
|Year||The outsider wins|
The underdogs weren’t just covering up. They were also winning. Nine outsiders emerged victorious from Week 1, including five teams that won on the road. ESPN’s Adam Schefter noted on Sunday that the underdogs haven’t had that kind of success in over 35 years.
Despite the crowds returning to the league, eight underdogs won today, including five on the road, the most during the season’s opening week in over 35 years, according to research producer ESPN. . @EpKap.
– Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 13, 2021
It is important not to overreact to the success of the underdogs until week two. Savvy bettors will continue to analyze trends and avoid immediately jumping on massive line changes. It’s best to take a full look at the league and assess which teams just had a bad week and which may not be as good as people thought at the start of the season.
Additionally, it’s important to note that a lot of injuries took place in week 1 and will impact teams going forward. Notably, the 49ers have lost top running back Raheem Mostert (knee) for at least eight weeks and their best corner Jason Verrett (ACL tear) for the season. The Saints also lost a few players heading into week two. This includes corner Marshon Lattimore, defensive end Marcus Davenport and center Erik McCoy.
These injuries, along with those suffered by Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jerry Jeudy, will have a big impact on betting odds and line movement heading into Week 2.
For more expert predictions on the NFL, check out Sporting News’ direct and ATS picks for Week 2.
NFL WEEK 2 CHOICE: Against the spread | Direct predictions
NFL odds for week 2
Below are the latest NFL odds from Week 2, including point spreads, cash margins and under totals for each game, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Last update: Wednesday September 15
NFL point spreads Week 2
|New York Giants vs. Washington Football Team||WAS -3|
|Las Vegas Raiders vs. Pittsburgh Steelers||PIT -5.5|
|Cincinnati Bengals vs. Chicago Bears||CHI -3|
|Houston Texans at the Cleveland Browns||CLE -12.5|
|Los Angeles Rams vs. Indianapolis Colts||LAR -4|
|Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins||BUF -3.5|
|New England Patriots vs. New York Jets||NE -5.5|
|San Francisco 49ers vs. Philadelphia Eagles||FS -3.5|
|New Orleans Saints at the Carolina Panthers||NO -3.5|
|Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars||DEN -6|
|Minnesota Vikings vs. Arizona Cardinals||ARI -3.5|
|Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||To -11.5|
|Dallas Cowboys vs. Los Angeles Chargers||BAC -2.5|
|Tennessee Titans vs. Seattle Seahawks||WED -5.5|
|Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens||KC -3.5|
|Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers||GB -11.5|
NFL Money Lines Week 2
|New York Giants vs. Washington Football Team||WAS -176|
|Las Vegas Raiders vs. Pittsburgh Steelers||PIT -240|
|Cincinnati Bengals vs. Chicago Bears||CHI -152|
|Houston Texans at the Cleveland Browns||CLE -650|
|Los Angeles Rams vs. Indianapolis Colts||LAR -200|
|Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins||BUF -188|
|New England Patriots vs. New York Jets||NE -240|
|San Francisco 49ers vs. Philadelphia Eagles||SF -196|
|New Orleans Saints at the Carolina Panthers||NO -198|
|Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars||DEN -270|
|Minnesota Vikings vs. Arizona Cardinals||ARI -210|
|Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||TB -720|
|Dallas Cowboys vs. Los Angeles Chargers||BAC -158|
|Tennessee Titans vs. Seattle Seahawks||WED -240|
|Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens||KC -210|
|Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers||GB -590|
NFL over-under of week 2
|New York Giants vs. Washington Football Team||41.5|
|Las Vegas Raiders vs. Pittsburgh Steelers||48.5|
|Cincinnati Bengals vs. Chicago Bears||45.5|
|Houston Texans at the Cleveland Browns||48.5|
|Los Angeles Rams vs. Indianapolis Colts||47.5|
|Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins||47.5|
|New England Patriots vs. New York Jets||42.5|
|San Francisco 49ers vs. Philadelphia Eagles||50.5|
|New Orleans Saints at the Carolina Panthers||44.5|
|Denver Broncos vs. Jacksonville Jaguars||45.5|
|Minnesota Vikings vs. Arizona Cardinals||51|
|Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers||51.5|
|Dallas Cowboys vs. Los Angeles Chargers||55.5|
|Tennessee Titans vs. Seattle Seahawks||53.5|
|Kansas City Chiefs vs. Baltimore Ravens||55.5|
|Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers||48.5|
IYER: Brother Manning’s Show Is The Only Way To Watch “Monday Night Football”
Best NFL bets for week 2
Chefs (-3.5) at Ravens
The Chiefs and Ravens both hit speed bumps in their first games of the season, but only the Chiefs were victorious. Patrick Mahomes helped the Chiefs overcome a 12-point deficit in a second-half rally against the Browns. Meanwhile, the Ravens have lost a 14-point lead against the Raiders. It was the first time they had lost a game in which they had a 14-point lead since 2014.
Until Monday night’s overtime loss to the Raiders, the Ravens had won 98 straight games since 2004 with a 14-point lead and more.
– Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 14, 2021
These performances aside, the Chiefs have a significant advantage over the Ravens in recent encounters. John Harbaugh has struggled to beat Andy Reid during his career. He’s only 1-5 against him in six games. That includes four straight losses to the Reid Chiefs, and in the three games with Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson, the Chiefs have averaged 7.3 points per game.
|2020||Chefs win 34-20|
|2019||Chiefs win 33-28|
|2018||Chiefs win 27-24|
|2015||Chiefs win 34-14|
Jackson struggled extensively in these contests. He’s averaged just 170.3 passing yards in three games against Kansas City, all losses. He did better with his legs – running for 196 yards – but he tallied just four total touchdowns while committing two turnovers and being sacked nine times. Only the Browns (12) have sacked Jackson more in his career.
The Ravens are also stoned in high school and couldn’t hold out against the Raiders. If Jimmy Smith can’t play, it might make Patrick Mahomes’ job a bit easier. Even if he plays, the absence of Marcus Peters will continue to weigh heavily and Mahomes should be able to separate the Ravens’ defense.
The trends say betting on the Chiefs is good value at -3.5, so we’ll trust them even in a tough road environment in Baltimore.
Seahawks (-5.5) vs. Titans
That choice is to trust the Seattle crowd to shake up Ryan Tannehill’s Titans.
The Seahawks have one of the best advantages on the NFL field. The 12th man tends to come out strong, and that’s part of why Russell Wilson has recorded a 55-17 record at home during his career.
Seattle is 44-32-2 ATS at home since Wilson took over as quarterback in 2012. That’s good for a 57.9 coverage percentage, which is tied for the third best in the NFL in the past nine seasons.
Needless to say, the “twelve” will want to welcome their home team back with a win. The Seahawks can be trusted to win by touchdown after the Titans struggled to contain Kyler Murray and the Cardinals. Tennessee allowed Arizona to score 38 points. Wilson is the most Murray-like NFL quarterback, so the Tennessee defense could continue to struggle to cover.
NFL POWER RANKINGS: Big obstacles for the Steelers and Saints, but what about this NFC West?
Broncos (-6) at Jaguars
A week after the underdogs moved to 12-4, our best bets of the week are three favorites. Go figure, but hopefully the principle of “regression to the mean” comes into play here.
Here’s something you probably didn’t know about Teddy Bridgewater: During his career, the Broncos quarterback went 36-13-1 ATS as a starter. He’s been as consistent as he can get in terms of delivering covers, and he should have a chance to do that easily against the Jaguars.
Jacksonville is a trash fire right now, to put it mildly. Urban Meyer’s time at Jacksonville has already had a rough start, and his team just lost to the Texans by 16, despite being favored by three points.
The Broncos just roughed up the Giants and allowed just seven points before a last-second TD from Daniel Jones reduced the lead to 14. The Broncos have a solid roster and should be able to keep Trevor Lawrence down. Co. in check. They have a good chance of winning this game in double digits, although playing in hot and humid Jacksonville could be a challenge for Denver.