NFL Picks - Pair Of Overvalued Teams For Week 2

Ross Benjamin

Thursday, September 15, 2016 6:16 PM UTC

Thursday, Sep. 15, 2016 6:16 PM UTC

Check out our NFL handicapping professional’s insightful article on overvalued teams for week 2. It may preclude you from jumping to conclusions in regards to your NFL picks.

I’ve long contended, the first four weeks of each NFL season are the most difficult for the best sportsbooks to gauge. As a result, there been several instances over the years in which teams, specifically favorites, have been overvalued. There are a couple such situations in which I deem that occurring on this NFL Week 2 slate of games. That doesn’t mean you should go right to any of the betting sites and make an abrupt wager. Nonetheless, it simply curtails one from overreacting to the previous week’s results.


NFL Week 2 Odds: Tennessee Titans vs. Detroit Lions
At the time of this writing (9/15), NFL betting odds at 5Dimes has Detroit as a 6.0-point favorite in this contest. Early betting trends have indicated that 57.7% of point spread bets have gone the way of Detroit.

Tennessee is coming off a disappointing 25-16 home SU&ATS loss to Minnesota last Sunday. Granted, Minnesota is clearly the better team on paper compared to Tennessee. Nevertheless, the Vikings were forced to start 36-year-old vagabond quarterback Shaun Hill in that contest because of Teddy Bridgewater’s season-ending injury, and newly acquired Sam Bradford not yet acclimated to his new playbook. The school of thought from a Titans perspective, it was an excellent opportunity to steal an early season win, and the best sportsbooks consensus line of Tennessee being only a 2.5-point underdog was further indicative of such.

The most disappointing aspect of Tennessee’s loss last week was their lack of a running game. Head coach Mike Mularkey labeled his team as having an exotic smash mouth rush offense prior to their season opener. After all, they possess two physical running backs in DeMarcus Murray and rookie top 2016 draft pick Derrick Henry (2015 Heisman Trophy/Alabama). Furthermore, their potentially potent running attack excelled during preseason games. However, they proceeded to rush for mere 64 yards against Minnesota and averaged a paltry 2.9 yards per attempt. Keep in mind, that was against one of the better defenses in football, and it’s highly unlikely we’ll see Tennessee abandon their run-first offensive attack based on one poor performance.

Here’s the thing about Detroit’s 39-35 win as a 3.5-point underdog at Indianapolis last Sunday. It came against a Colts team that I personally feel is immensely overrated, and was being given too much credit in regards to many pundits NFL week 2 predictions.  As a matter of fact, the Indianapolis defense is downright terrible, and that was clearly evident after allowing Detroit to rack up 448 yards of total offense. Additionally, Detroit allowed 450 yards to the Indianapolis offense.

With all things being considered, Detroit is overvalued in my professional opinion. If not for the last minute go-ahead touchdown in last week’s 4-point win at Indianapolis, this point spread would be more in the 4.5-point range, rather than its present number of 6.0.

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NFL Week 2 Point Spreads: Atlanta Falcons vs Oakland Raiders
Current (9/15) NFL point spreads at Bookmaker displays Oakland as a 5.5-point home favorite on Sunday against Atlanta. There’s been 57.7% of point spread early bets made on the Raiders.

There are two things that come to mind when initially seeing this line. Oakland is an abysmal 6-24 ATS during its previous 30 games as a favorite and lost 20 of those 30 contests outright. Contrarily, Atlanta is a stellar 7-1 ATS in their 8 preceding games as a non-division underdog and won 5 of those contests straight up. The retort by some pertaining to those aforementioned betting trends, Oakland will be much better this season than in year’s past, and Atlanta is no longer a top NFC contender.

Assuming that Oakland is going to be that much better founded on preseason projections, and in light of last week’s thrilling 35-34 come from behind win at New Orleans, would be a bit premature in my mind. Same could be said about Atlanta’s home upset loss to Tampa Bay last Sunday. You know what they say about assumptions? They can make an ass out of you, and an ass out of me.

If this game was played last week, my personal power ratings indicate to me that Oakland would’ve been anywhere from a 3.0 to 3.5-point favorite. It’s imperative not overreact to what you witnessed during the preceding week, and especially so this early in the year. It’s oftentimes the difference between winning or losing on your NFL picks.

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