Aaron Notis: Cincinnati Bengals (+5) at Chicago Bears
Joe Burrow came off his ACL tear with a vengeance in his Week 2 triumph over the Minnesota Vikings. The Bengals offense has too many weapons to flop and this showed in week one. Burrow threw for two touchdowns, one to college teammate Jamarr Chase and another to Tee Higgins. Running back Joe Mixon also had himself a nice start to the season, rushing for 127 yards on 29 carries and reaching the endzone one time. The Bears are testing out the Andy Dalton experiment, but after an early interception, they were never able to get back in the game. Until Justin Fields sees consistent snaps at quarterback, Chicago won’t be competitive. After pulling out the close win against Minnesota, expect the Bengals to roll into Soldier Field and claw out a big win in week two.
Hunter Firment: Kansas City Chiefs (-1.5) at Baltimore Ravens
A mouthwatering matchup that I highlighted when the full NFL schedule came out in May. I almost wish the game was pushed to later in the season with playoff implications on the line, but we’ll take it regardless. The defending AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs will go into M&T Bank Stadium for Sunday Night Football fired up after taking down a strong Cleveland Browns squad in week one at Arrowhead. Superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes threw for over 300 yards and tossed 3 touchdowns, outdoing Baker Mayfield. Speedster Tyreek Hill also proved to be in midseason form as he racked up a staggering 197 yards against the Browns. The Chiefs offense looks scary right now. But the Baltimore Ravens and former MVP quarterback Lamar Jackson won’t be an easy out. While the Ravens had a bit of an underwhelming season last year, they come into this season boasting an equally strong if not better squad from one year ago. The additions of wideout Sammy Watkins and right guard Kevin Zeitler on offense and linebacker Justin Houston on the defense will make Baltimore a contender again in the AFC North. With that being said, I believe the Chiefs are going to go into Baltimore and cover the spread. I just think that they are a more complete team than the Ravens. And if it turns into a shootout, KC has the ultimate gunslinger. Mahomes is on a revenge tour after their Super Bowl loss in Tampa, and I would never bet against that man with a chip on his shoulder.
Aaron Silverstein: Arizona Cardinals (-3) vs. Minnesota Vikings
It is always easy to get caught up in the hype of Week 1, but I stand by doing absolutely that when it comes to Kyler Murray and the Cardinals. In the first game of his third NFL season, the 2018 Heisman Trophy winner balled out against the Titans, throwing for almost 300 yards while accounting for five total touchdowns. His teammate on the defensive side of the ball, Chandler Jones, put up a stat that almost defies logic: FIVE sacks in a season opener. DeAndre Hopkins snagged two of Murray’s four passing touchdowns in signature fashion, and looks to be that same elite weapon he has been for much of his career as a wideout. The major pieces for Kyler and the Cardinals look to be in midseason form already, which does not bode well for a Minnesota team coming off a disappointing loss to Joe Burrow and the Bengals. Expect another big day for Kyler passing the ball against a Vikings secondary that is very susceptible to the big play over the top. Arizona will take the game and the spread on Sunday.
Cam Cobey: New Orleans Saints (-3) at Carolina Panthers
I too am falling for the Week One hype. The Saints throttled Aaron Rodgers and the Packers on Sunday by a score of 38-3 in what was an embarrassing performance after an offseason full of drama in Green Bay. In the first Saints game in the post Drew Brees era, Jameis Winston stepped in and was fantastic. He was 14-20 for 148 yards and 5 touchdowns. It wasn’t even that much of an offensive explosion for New Orleans, but they played great defense and shut down Aaron Rodgers. On the other side of things, the Panthers barely beat the Jets in Week 1. Sam Darnold and Christian McCaffrey played well, but this team is simply not very good. If you can barely beat the Jets, that’s a red flag. The Saints will be traveling to Carolina to play this one, but they’re used to playing on the road as they’ve had to play their home games in Jacksonville. I think the points are tighter than they should be in this one, and I’m all in on Winston and the Saints after their destruction of the Packers in Week 1.