All right, NFL Week 1 is in the books, which means it’s time to overreact to whatever happened as we head into Week 2. This is a tradition as old as Tom Brady himself, looking at what we got wrong in Week 1 (hello, 49ers) and then completely overreacting (don’t drop Trey Lance just yet, m’kay?).
So let’s go through a few surprises from Week 1, and try and figure out what it means going forward. Starting with …
The 49ers’ loss to the Bears: I mean, how many sportsbooks cashed three-team teasers because the Niners went belly-up in this game? All right: It was Lance’s first game as the official San Francisco QB1, at Soldier Field, with Eli Mitchell leaving the game with an injury and George Kittle not suiting up and the field conditions resembling what Noah saw when he looked out his window.
Clearly, not an ideal opening day situation. So: Let’s not overreact to this one.
The Patriots’ loss to the Dolphins: The Matt Patricia/Joe Judge offensive co-coordinator (or whatever they’re doing) thing went about as well as expected. Point being: The Patriots looked terrible. Add in Mac Jones possibly being banged up, and a subpar offensive line, and the sum total of zero playmakers on offense, and a defensive backfield that is #notgood … yeah. Feel free to properly react here. The Patriots are in trouble, and the game has — famous last words here — probably passed Bill Belichick by.
Bill Belichick really named Matt Patricia the offensive play-caller in a real NFL game. pic.twitter.com/XtwVo87Usv
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) September 11, 2022
The Packers’ loss to the Vikings: Aaron Rodgers may need weekly ayahuasca sessions to get through this season. Let’s face it: Rodgers is mercurial, and it’s possible that without his on-field mind meld partner Davante Adams, Rodgers — who clearly has other things besides the NFL on his mind — might be checked out.
This why I don’t like Aaron Rodgers nomo, instead of coaching his guys up he act like a bitch. These yo guys, this who management gave you so why not build them up they yo teammates dumb ass https://t.co/6P3DqhCTeD
— Champagne Champagne (@ClicquotPapii) September 12, 2022
Verdict: I think we’re properly reacting. This team might be toast.
The Chiefs are better without Tyreek Hill?: One game does not a season make, but is it possible that defenses now can’t just key on Kelce and Hill? Remember last year, when the Chiefs were “solved” with two-safety coverage, taking away the deep ball? Well … now what are defenses supposed to do? Kelce is Kelce, JuJu was jitterbugging all over the underneath, MVS and Hardman have to command deep ball respect, CEH was uncovered coming out of the backfield. The Chiefs are just fine.
The Bengals aren’t up to snuff: The Bengals should have won that game Sunday. I mean, they ran 100(!) plays compared to the Steelers’ 61. But … let’s call it a Super Bowl hangover and not overreact. They’ll be just fine.
The Lions are awesome: Sure, they lost 38-35, but boy howdy was that a fun game. A potent offense and a defense that makes Swiss cheese look downright chhurpi-esque (pause for video) …
… this team is going to be fun, fun, fun to watch this year. Let’s properly react.
And … on to Week 2!
The +1000 or more parlay of the week
Lost this one last week, but that’s OK. Just need to nail two of these to profit on the year.
Quick reminder: This is gut-check stuff. Early week gut-check stuff. In short: I have no idea what I’m talking about, this is just for fun, and heaven knows things may change between now and later. (Also: Any rebroadcast, retransmission, or account of this game, without the express … )
All right: Let’s go to DraftKings (these are Monday morning lines, for the record) and give me the Steelers straight up against the Patriots at +105, Lions-Commanders over 46.5, over 42.5 in Giants-Panthers, and the Bears getting 9.5 points against the Packers on Sunday night for a +1326 adventure.
Rationale: Well, I talked about the Patriots above, and I can’t believe they opened as a 1.5-point favorite in Pittsburgh. That’s a bad line. As for the Lions, I’ll be betting the over every week. The Giants-Panthers number is too low considering the playmakers on either side of the ball. As for the Bears? It’s my least confident guess here, but if I’m right about Rodgers checking out … well, everyone had the Bears 2-0 to start the year, right?
I’ve talked myself into the Bears being 2-0. The Packers look worse than Notre Dame
— Brian Knights (@BrianKnights3) September 11, 2022
The on-paper, no doubt, three-team teaser that’s bound to lose
Yes, lost here as well (noticing a trend?) thanks to those 49ers, but back to the well this week at Caesars at +160 with the Chiefs getting 2.5 points at home Thursday night against the Chargers, the Lions-Commanders game going over 40.5, and the Steelers getting 7.5 points at home against the Patriots. We’ve covered the Steelers and the Lions, and as for the Chiefs? Well, do you want to bet against the Chiefs, at home, on a short week? Me neither.
The Los Angeles Rams are giving the Atlanta Falcons 11.5 points at home. A few things here: The Rams looked very bad last week, the Falcons showed their offensive chops last week. Taken together, I like the Rams giving a touchdown; not so sure I like them giving a touchdown, a field goal, and a rouge-and-a-half.
Did I win the DraftKings Milly Maker?
Nope. Had to beat out 1,194,450 people to win the $5-milly. I beat out 1,190,641 people in my best lineup, good for 3,809th place. That means, with that lineup, I beat out 99.7% of the other entries.
I won $40.
Of course, I also played this lineup in the sum total of zero small-field tournaments. (For the record: Hurts with a Swift/St. Brown runback, JuJu and Kelce with a Hollywood runback, naked Barkley, naked Dotson, Dolphins D.)
DraftKings DFS play(s) of the week
Well, nailed Saquon last week, so that’s nice.
This week? For starters, if Najee Harris is out — as of now, he’s expected to suit up, but who knows — Jaylen Warren at $5.4K will be the Steelers’ every-down back. He feels like an uncomfortable play — I mean, he’s an undrafted rookie — but when was the last time Mike Tomlin didn’t feature a bell-cow back?
By the way, pricing has immediately tightened up. Not a lot of screaming value right now. (Also: Yuck. No Chiefs, Chargers, Bills, Vikings, or Eagles on the main slate.)
But Barkley is still too cheap at $7.3K, and Jeff Wilson is too cheap at $5.1K.
Here’s one that’s going to go way under the radar: Logan Thomas for $3.4K. He played 48 snaps, ran 25 routes, and was targeted on five balls in his first game back despite a questionable tag. Going up against the Lions defense — which gave up four catches and an almost-touchdown to Dallas Goedert — that can be had. I like Logan!
My mortal lock five-star only for my best customers can’t lose guaranteed best bet of the week
Yeah, yeah, the 49ers lost it for me last week. Coming back with the Steelers getting 1.5 at home against the Patriots. I fully expect the Steelers to be at least two-point favorites by kickoff.