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Denver Broncos @ Pittsburgh Steelers
Pick: Steelers ML
The Steelers are coming off a Prime Time win that saw quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, throw three touchdowns on offense, while his defense held New York Giants Running Back, Saquon Barkley to an average of only 0.4 yards per carry. It seems Big Ben’s season ending injury from a year ago isn’t holding back the offense. Meanwhile, the Steelers defense hasn’t skipped a beat despite the loss of nose tackle, Javon Hargrave. The Denver Broncos on the other hand are coming off a very disappointing loss in Prime Time in which Tennessee Titans’ kicker, Stephen Gostkowski, missed three field goals and an extra point, and the Broncos still managed to lose by two points. Denver’s defense looked solid at times. They were able to get stops in the red zone that forced the Titans to settle for field goals that they then missed. The biggest issue for Denver in this game was their inability to capitalize on the Titans’ missed field goals. The Bronco’s young offense is exciting, but they definitely showed their age in the loss.
Going into Pittsburgh is going to be a tough task for the Broncos. Denver’s defense is solid and at this point in his career, Ben Roethlisberger is far from mistake proof, so they could get lucky if he makes a couple bad throws. The real test will be the Broncos’ offense against the Steelers defense. If Denver wants to win this game, they’ll need a breakout performance from second year QB, Drew Lock, as it’s unlikely Melvin Gordon will be able to provide Denver’s offense 5.2 yards per carry like he did Monday night. The Broncos will also be without RB Phillip Lindsay, which will only serve to further worsen the Denver running game. The Steelers defense looks like it has the makings to be the best in football and that’s bad news for the Broncos. I’m expecting a big win for the Steelers.
Detroit Lions @ Green Bay Packers
Pick: Packers Money Line
Detroit suffered a disappointing loss to the Chicago Bears on Sunday that saw the Lions blow a 17-point lead while Bears’ QB, Mitch Trubisky, scored 21-points unanswered. Now they get to face off against a red-hot Aaron Rodgers – who is much better than Mitch Trubisky – and the Green Bay Packers. The Packers are coming off 43-point performance against division rival, Minnesota Vikings. Rodgers threw for 364 yards and four TDs while his top receiver, DaVante Adams, caught 14 passes for 156 yards and two touchdowns.
The Lions definitely have the pieces to make this into a game. On paper, their offense is one of the most well-rounded in the entire NFL, but they may be without their top WR, Kenny Golladay, once again this weekend. A healthy Golladay could make a big difference for the Lions, but it simply comes down to can the Detroit defense stop the Rodgers-Adams connection. Detroit was without their top-three overall pick, cornerback, Jeffrey Okudah, but even if he’s healthy for this matchup, there’s no telling if he’ll be able to slow down Rodger and Adams. I’m taking the Packers and expecting a big day out of their passing game.
San Francisco 49ers @ New York Jets
To put things lightly, this should be a blowout for the 49ers. The Jets are coming off an absolute beat down at the hands of the Buffalo Bills. They score board may say they only lost by ten points, but the Jets didn’t have a chance in this game. They lost their star running back, LeVeon Bell, to injury early in the game and the already ugly New York offense looked even worse from then on out. QB Sam Darnold finished with just 215 pass yards and his long term propects as a starting quarterback are beginning to look pretty doubtful. On other side of the ball, Josh Allen had a field day against the Jets defense going for 312 yards passing, 57 yards rushing, and three total touch downs.
The Niners suffered a narrow defeat at the hands of divisional rival, Arizona Cardinals on Sunday. The Cardinals are expected to be one of the most improved teams in football this season and they looked the part beating the reigning NFC champions in their first game of the season. This shouldn’t be an indictment on the Niners however as they played very well in their loss and simply dropped a close game to a talented divisional rival. The Niners defense should be able to make short work of Sam Darnold and the rest of the Jets offense. I’m expecting a big win for a Niners as they try to get right and a loss for the Jets that puts them one step closer to firing head coach, Adam Gase.
New York Giants @ Chicago Bears
After a tough loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Giants could be looking at more of the same against the Bears this Sunday. The Giants played fairly well against a tough Steelers defense, but it simply came down to the fact their offensive line couldn’t get the job done. Pittsburgh’s front seven held Giants’ star, Saquon Barkley, to just six yards on 15 carries. On top of that, the Steelers pass rush was also able to get enough pressure on Daniel Jones to force two interceptions. The Giants won’t get any breaks this week as they face a front seven that’s just as good as the Steelers.
The Bears are coming off a big comeback win against the Detroit Lions. Chicago had a hard time stopping the run as they allowed 94 rushing yards to Adrian Peterson. Now they have to get ready to face Saquon Barkley. Outside of Barkley, the Giants don’t pose many issues for the Bears. If Bears’ QB Mitch Trubisky can put together a similar performance against the Giants as he did the Lions, that should be enough to secure the win. Especially, if Khalil Mack and the rest of the Bears defense can get Daniel Jones running for his life.
Kansas City Chiefs @ Los Angeles Chargers
It almost feels like a copout taking the Chiefs. The reigning Super Bowl champs made quick work of a good Houston Texans team in the opening game of the season. They have the Potential to blow out every team they face this season. The Chargers just barely won their first game of the season off a missed 31-yard field goal by Cincinnati Bengals kicker, Randy Bullock. The Chargers offense looked fairly unimpressive in Tyrod Taylor’s first start as the Bolts new QB. They managed to score only 16 points against a bad Bengals defense.
The Chargers simply lack the offensive potency in order to hang with a team like the Chiefs. They have talented pieces on the defensive side of the ball, but they play too inconsistently. Bengals rookie QB, Joe Burrow, struggled in the early part of his contest against the Chargers, but really started to get things going in the two-minute offense. Had Bullock not missed the chip-shot field goal, the Bengals could’ve stolen the game in overtime. The Chargers got lucky against a young team in their opening game of the season, but that won’t happen against the Super Bowl champs. I expect the Chiefs to get out to an early lead in this one and never look back.