Unfortunately, we hit on just 1 of 4 NFL betting tips last weekend as we continue to suss out the start of the 2018-19 season. Teams are starting to fall into place now and things should get a little easier now that we have had a couple of looks at every team. See our preview and tips for Week 3 in the NFL below.
The Jets were fantastic in Week 1 with a massive win over the Detroit Lions away from home. However, they couldn’t capitalise in their home opener against the Dolphins on the weekend, going down 20-12 as Miami took an early lead in the division. Rookie QB Sam Darnold was once again impressive, throwing for 334 yards and a touchdown in the win, although he did throw two interceptions.
The Browns have had a tough start to 2018 with games against the Steelers and Saints. They have been extremely competitive in both though, securing a tie with Pittsburgh before losing by just three points to the Saints in New Orleans. Their defence has been fantastic, keeping two of the more dynamic offences in the league to just 21 points in both weeks and they’ll be hopeful of the chance to get their first win in over a year on Thursday night.
This could be the first time in a long, long time that the Browns have started as favourites in an NFL game, as they currently hold a slight 3-point advantage over the Jets. I’d have to agree with the bookies here as the Cleveland defence has looked fantastic in the opening weeks. Tough game to call here but I think the Browns have what it takes to record their first win since December 2016.
Blockbuster game here between the two LA teams early on Monday morning. The Chargers bounced back from their Week 1 loss to the Chiefs with a 31-20 win over the Bills in Week 2. Phlip Rivers was fantastic once again, throwing for 256 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions in the win. Offence looks to be the name of the game for the Chargers this season after putting up 28 and 31 in their first two games, their defence looks to be a bit of a worry, however.
The Rams moved to 2-0 with a dominant 34-0 win over the Cardinals on Monday morning. It was the second time in three games that the Rams had shut out the Cardinals, and after only allowing 13 points to the Raiders the week before, their defence looks to be one of the most damaging in the league.
The Rams could be the early favourites for the Super Bowl after just two weeks of action, but they’ll get their first real test this weekend against Rivers and the dynamic offence. The two sides haven’t played since all the way back in 2014, where the Chargers were 27-24 winners. The Rams have opened as favourites here which is understandable given their start to the season and the home field advantage, however, I think seven points is a little steep. The Chargers should be able to put up enough points to stay competitive here, I expect this to be in the region of 24-20 in favour of the Rams.
The Patriots suffered a tough loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on the weekend to fall to 1-1 on the season. Their offence struggled to find form against the rampant Jags defence, and the lack of reliable receivers available to Tom Brady became a real issue. The Patriots addressed that issue throughout the week, however, by signing Josh Gordon from the Cleveland Browns. Gordon has had plenty of publicised issues off the field throughout his time in the NFL, but is an extremely talented receiver when in form.
The Lions lost a tough three-point game to the San Francisco 49ers away from home on the weekend to fall to 0-2 on the season. They’ll welcome the return to Ford Field this weekend where head coach Matt Patricia will be hunting his first win of the season against his old boss in Bill Belichick. After leaving the defensive coordinator position at the extremely successful New England Patriots to take the Lions head coaching job in the off-season, many thought that Patricia would turn Detroit’s defensive game around, however, with scores of 48 and 30 against them in the first two weeks, the Lions defence has proven to be the leakiest in the league.
The Patriots start as 6 point favourites away from home here, which doesn’t inspire much confidence given the performance they put in on the weekend. However, that Jacksonville defence is on a different level to that of the Lions and I think Brady and co. will have no problem getting the ball up the field on the weekend. Back the Patriots away from home here.
The final game of the round sees the surprise packet of the NFL so far, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, hosting the Steelers Tuesday morning. The Buccaneers have shocked the footballing world in the first two weeks of play, defeating the Saints 48-40 in Week 1 before edging out the Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles 27-21 in Week 2. Off season recruit QB Ryan Fitzpatrick has been the catalyst for the Buccaneers success and currently leads the NFL in passing yards with 819 and is second in TD’s with 8.
The Steelers put up 37 points against the Chiefs in Week 2 but couldn’t capture the win, taking their season record to 0-1-1 following the Week 1 tie with Cleveland. The Steelers went away from the run game completely on the weekend as they still await the return of star running back Le’Veon Bell. QB Ben Roethlisberger threw the ball 60 times in the loss, which could be a similar game plan this weekend against the Buccaneers, who have allowed the second most passing yards in the league throughout the first two games.
Tough game to call here. The Steelers start as slight 1.5 point favourites over the 2-0 Buccaneers. However, they were super impressive against the Chiefs last weekend, who are proving to be one of the best teams in the league early in the season. I’m not sure how confident I am in this Tampa Bay team, who seem like they are ready to fall apart at any time. I’m staying away from the game line and backing over in the total points here. Both sides have scored heavily this season and haven’t played much defence.
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