The dogs were barking in Week 1 of the NFL season as the Chicago Bears, Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants spearheaded unsuspecting wins.
The pregame narrative: After nearly being upset in the season opener, the New Orleans Saints welcome an NFC South rival this Sunday. The Jacksonville Jaguars and Los Angeles Chargers also eye divisional opponents in matchups we think they can win.
Check out our best NFL Week 2 underdog picks, featuring three plus-money teams we’re backing straight up.
Odds as of 12:28 p.m. ET on 09/13/2022.
NFL Week 2 underdog picks
Best bet: Saints ML (+125)
New Orleans pulled off a miraculous 27-26 comeback win against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 1.
And no, miraculous isn’t an exaggeration. Win probabilities pegged the Saints with a 2.9% chance to win with 14:18 remaining in the fourth quarter but the Falcons, who have plenty of experience relinquishing near-insurmountable leads, coughed it up late.
Now New Orleans hosts the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 2 in a matchup that historically favours the home team.
The Saints have won seven consecutive regular-season games against the Bucs. Their latest victory over Tampa Bay was a stunning 9-0 shutout in Week 15 last year.
The winning streak covers all four of Tom Brady’s regular-season contests against New Orleans since he left the New England Patriots.
Speaking of Brady, Tampa Bay’s offence looked poor against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football. Yes, the Bucs won the game 19-3, but Brady led just one touchdown drive. The offence stalled a number of times on third down, converting on just five of 14 attempts.
Brady owns a 6:8 touchdown to interception ratio against New Orleans since joining Tampa Bay and will likely be without Chris Godwin.
The Saints can certainly steal this game against a Bucs team that will be playing its second straight game on the road.
Key stat: Each of the Saints’ last seven wins against the Buccaneers has been by seven-plus points.
Jaguars ML (+165): How bad is the AFC South? Well, none of the teams in the division won in Week 1 despite two squads facing each other.
The Indianapolis Colts tied with the Houston Texans, and they’ll face a tougher task in Week 2 on the road against Jacksonville. The Colts have really struggled when travelling to Duval County, losing seven in a row at TIAA Bank Field.
Indianapolis will also be playing its second consecutive road game and it’s going to be a hot one. The forecast is calling for humidity and a temperature of 84 degrees Fahrenheit (29 degrees Celsius). That’s not great news for a dome team.
Chargers ML (+160): No team was more impressive on Sunday than the Kansas City Chiefs. Patrick Mahomes and Co. walloped the Arizona Cardinals 44-21 and now return to Arrowhead to battle Los Angeles.
We’re rolling with the Chargers in this one, though. They took care of business in Week 1, downing the Las Vegas Raiders 24-19.
Taking some juicy plus-money value in a divisional matchup between two strong teams is never a bad idea. The Chargers enter having won each of their last two games at Kansas City and three of their last four.
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