NFL Picks: Potential Upsets in Week 2

Jason Lake

Saturday, September 19, 2015 6:59 PM UTC

Saturday, Sep. 19, 2015 6:59 PM UTC

There are nine small favorites on the NFL odds board for Week 2, and all nine are in danger of losing – especially the Minnesota Vikings, if Week 1 was any indication.

Jason's 2015 record as of Sept. 19: 5-3 ATS; 3-2 Total

Two out of three ain't bad. Our first batch of potential upsets performed very well in Week 1, as both the Buffalo Bills and Atlanta Falcons overcame the football odds and put a “W” in the win column to start the 2015 campaign. Only the Detroit Lions failed to git 'er done, and they came close in a 33-28 loss to the San Diego Chargers (–3.5 at home). Detroit was up 21-3 before everything went pear-shaped.

Do we dare put the Lions back on Upset Watch for Week 2? Of course – we're not making any hard football picks here. But if you're looking for a good value against the moneyline, any of the following three Sunday games is worth adding to your Week 2 NFL picks.

Lions at Vikings (1:00 p.m. ET, FOX)
This is more of a response to how poorly the Vikings played in their 20-3 loss to the San Francisco 49ers (+2.5 at home), of all people. Football Outsiders ranked Minnesota No. 30 in DVOA for Week 1, well behind Detroit at No. 20 overall. Adrian Peterson had 31 yards rushing on 10 carries. The run defense gave up 230 yards. Blair Walsh missed a field goal from 44 yards out. This might not happen every week, but it's not a very good start for the Vikes. They're also “valued” as a pick 'em by the Elo Ratings at FiveThirtyEight. Detroit's available as high as +120 on our NFL odds board at press time.

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Falcons at Giants (1:00 p.m. ET, FOX)
Why not give the Falcons another spin? They got the job done last week, beating the Philadelphia Eagles 26-24 as 3-point home dogs. It wasn't a brilliant performance; Atlanta checks in at No. 15 on the DVOA charts after the Eagles played a strong second half to nearly steal the game back from the Falcons. The Giants almost upset the Dallas Cowboys (–7 at home) in Week 1 before losing 27-26, but they still don't have LB Jon Beason (knee) in the lineup, among others. Atlanta has value here at +127 on the moneyline.

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Seahawks at Packers (8:30 p.m. ET, NBC)
This is a tricky one. It's not too often the Seahawks are on the plus side of the moneyline, but they're as high as +164 Sunday night, and our consensus reports show about 60 percent support for Seattle. We wouldn't have touched the 'Hawks with a 10-foot-pole after that 34-31 overtime loss to the St. Louis Rams (+3.5 at home). Then the Packers lost RT Bryan Bulaga to a sprained knee during practice this week. We don't necessarily buy the idea that the Seahawks are Green Bay's kryptonite, mind you, we just remember what happened last year when Bulaga got injured. It wasn't pretty for Packers fans.

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