There wasn’t a lot of scoring during the opening week of the NFL Preseason, but with Week 2 now here, will we see a league-wide bounce back from offensive units? Last week, 14 of the 16 games stayed under the total. After delving into the history books a bit this week and analyzing some NFL Preseason Week 2 trends, we can now offer you some betting options worth exploring on this week’s card.
Without further ado, let’s jump right into our NFL preseason Week 2 picks and best bets.
NFL Preseason Week 2 Picks and Best Bets
Around the NFL, it appeared offensive coaches took a conservative approach both to playcalling and the use of their personnel, as many games struggled to reach the mid-30s. Often, we’ve seen overcorrections when a staggering trend appears, and we feel that we’ve identified some good spots here this week.
|Week 1 Preseason Best Bets|
|FOOTBALL TEAM OVER BENGALS|
|49ERS OVER CHARGERS|
Patriots Offense Will Bounce Back Against Eagles
While much has changed in New England since the last time the team has played a Week 2 preseason game, we know the way Bill Belichick conducts business remains an utter constant. As such, regardless of personnel on the field, you can expect the team’s approach to their second practice to hold true to historical form.
The Patriots have played nine of their last 10 Week 2 preseason games over the total, with all 10 reaching at least 38 points. The team won eight of those 10 games, averaging 27.4 points per game. Interestingly, despite that success, New England allowed at least 17 points in each of the last eight of those games, good for 24.1 points per game against in that span.
— NFL (@NFL) August 13, 2021
New England played its current opponent, the Philadelphia Eagles, in the second preseason game three times in the last eight seasons. All three meetings went over the total, amassing 57, 77, and 44 total points, respectively, with the Eagles scoring at least 20 each time.
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In fact, Philadelphia has consistently been a productive offense in their second preseason game in recent seasons overall. They have scored at least 17 points in each of their last six in that role, averaging 26 points per game in that sample space.
With quarterback questions on both teams and just one preseason game remaining for both squads, expect a strong emphasis on offensive competition and execution, leading to enough points to push this one over the total once again.
Our Pick: NE/Phi Over 38.5 (Caesars -110)
Washington Football Team Will Knock Off Burrow-less Bengals
We saw what became of the Cincinnati Bengals last season after their rookie quarterback, Joe Burrow, tore his ACL. The Bengals were 3-6 after Burrow went down against Washington. The team went on to lose that game and four of its final six to finish 5-11 on the season. The Bengals scored less than 10 points in four of those final seven games, led at quarterback by Ryan Finley and Brandon Allen.
Allen remains in the current Cincinnati quarterback room, alongside Burrow, Kyle Shurmur, and Eric Dungey. Burrow won’t play, so Allen will likely get the start, as he and Shurmur split duties in their first preseason game against Tampa. The Bengals rushed the ball 35 times in that game and managed just one touchdown, a one-yard rush.
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Washington’s elite defense will be licking its chops for this one, as they return the NFL’s third best pass defense in terms of yards allowed last season. A lackluster loss Washington’s first preseason game should provide some added motivation for Ron Rivera’s starters and fringe players here.
With Washington possessing one of the league’s best defenses and sending superior quarterbacks onto the field in this one (Ryan Fitzpatrick, Kyle Allen, Taylor Heinicke, and Steven Montez on the roster), Football Team should handle the Bengals Friday night.
Back 49ers to Beat Conservative Chargers
First-year head coach Brandon Staley has made it clear that his main priority is to get his star players to the regular season field in one piece. After picking up his first (preseason) win in the Chargers’ first preseason game, Staley announced that quarterback Justin Herbert and safety Derwin James would not play a snap until the regular season. And, if you looked at the guys getting the bulk of the snaps in the team’s first preseason outing, you’d be hard-pressed to find much in the way of a household name.
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Herbert’s absence leaves Chase Daniel and Easton Stick as the only two options under center for this game against San Francisco. Daniel is a career backup and a proven commodity in the role he plays. He threw 24 passes to Stick’s seven in the first preseason game, a 13-6 win over the Rams.
You would have to imagine Chargers’ focus here will be getting Stick a larger chunk of time under center, easing any burden on the San Francisco defense.
#49ers rookie QB Trey Lance with an 80-yard TD to Trent Sherfield.
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) August 15, 2021
The Chargers defense will not get a similar reprieve, as San Francisco just cut QB Josh Rosen this week, leaving only Jimmy Garoppolo, rookie Trey Lance, and Nate Sudfeld to take snaps.
Kyle Shanahan has inferred that Garoppolo is likely to be the team’s starter in Week 1 of the regular season, so one would have to assume he will see significantly more action here than the three passes he attempted in the first preseason game.
Lance will continue to see significant playing time, as well, as the third overall pick in the 2021 draft has barely played any competitive games in the last year and a half. Sudfeld still offers more NFL experience than Stick would for Los Angeles, so San Francisco should have a distinct edge under center throughout this matchup.
Shanahan’s team will not be bothered by playing this one on the road either. Since he took over in San Francisco, the team has played five of six Preseason Week 2/3 games on the road, including each of the last five. They won both of those games in 201 by nine points at Denver and 10 points at Kansas City. Another AFC West domino should fall at home here as San Francisco focuses on performance while Los Angeles focuses on staying healthy.
Our Pick: San Francisco -5 (FanDuel Sportsbook -110)
Note: Last week’s picks went 2-1 ATS.
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