It’s Week 2 of the NFL season, and we are back with another over/under winner after our Week 1 bet on the Cowboys vs. Rams under 52 hit by 15 points! I employ a mix of computer modeling and natural intuition to come up with these totals, and my Week 2 NFL over/under pick checks both boxes. Bookmark the PFN betting team here for all of our 100%, completely free content to help you achieve your maximum ROI during the 2020 NFL season.
Highest Rated Over/Under NFL Pick: Jets vs. 49ers under 42.5 Points
43 points is not a high total for an NFL game by any means, but did anyone watch these two offenses play in Week 1? I try not to overreact too much to Week 1 performances, but these offenses displayed the same inefficiencies they did in 2019 and did not have much turnover in personnel from last year. Therefore, many of these issues offensively are not just one game blunders, but rather long-term problems with the schematics and player personnel.
The Jets offense continues to struggle under Adam Gase
I legitimately laughed out loud when Head Coach Adam Gase was quoted after Sunday’s game, saying that “I felt like calling this game compared to last year was night and day.” His reasoning for this quote was, “This year, it was, either we had a guy open, and we missed him. We had a guy open, and we dropped it. We had a couple miscues in the run game.” It sounds to me like Gase is already looking to blame anyone but himself for the offensive struggles.
To be fair to Gase, there is little to be optimistic about for this offense heading into Week 2. The offense started with three straight three-and-outs, and they had 3 points by halftime. The final box score number of 17 points is not good but is still not reflective of how awful this offense was when this game was still a competitive game on Sunday.
Gase needed to make significant changes from the offense that averaged just 17.3 points per game, 31st in the league, in 2019. I fear for the Jets’ sake that not enough changes were made either schematically or personnel-wise for this offense to escape the cellar of NFL rankings in 2020 either.
Injury Bug Strikes the Jets
On Tuesday, the Jets put both running back Le’Veon Bell and wide receiver Denzel Mims on injured reserve. Mims did not play last Sunday, but his placement on the IR affirms that this receiving core will be trotting out the uninspiring crew of Breshad Perriman, Jamison Crowder, Braxton Berrios, and Chris Hogan next week. Expect the 49ers to handle this receiving core with the same ease the Bills did in Week 1.
The hope that Bell would return to the efficiency levels we saw from him while with the Steelers is gone, at least for now. Instead, they will rely on the ageless wonder Frank Gore and Kalen Ballage at the running back position. Once again, an uninspiring unit to be taking into battle against one of the NFL’s best defenses. The Jets mustered just 52 total rushing yards in Week 1, and I don’t see what will change in Week 2 to bring this rushing total up to a respectable number against this formidable 49ers run defense.
The 49ers are still lacking in the passing game
The often criticized Jimmy Garoppolo did not look like he improved at all Week 1. His quarterback rating was a dreadful 35.3, and he simply looked lost out there. He may have the ability to make every throw, but he has not shown the ability to make the correct decision on the field regularly since coming into the league.
On nearly every play I watched from last Sunday, Garoppolo stared down his first receiver and would either throw into double-coverage or immediately check it down. Take away Jimmy G’s first option, and you have him beat. The Jets can do that, right?
I certainly think they can, especially considering the lack of talent at wide receiver the 49ers will be fielding on Sunday. Deebo Samuel, the team’s top wide receiver, is out on IR. Rookie Brandon Aiyuk is battling a hamstring and did not play last Sunday. He remains questionable for Week 2, and he may be limited if he does suit up.
The bad news does not stop there for Garoppolo’s targets, as his favorite target in tight end George Kittle is also questionable for Week 2. Kittle suffered a knee injury in the first half of Sunday’s game and is listed as questionable following an MRI revealed he suffered a knee sprain. He will at best be limited on Sunday.
The 49ers run game can’t solve everything
We saw the 49ers lean on their dynamic run game heavily en route to an NFC Championship in 2019, so what is stopping them from doing the same here vs. the Jets? Well, they may be able to do so, but as long as the clock continues to tick on these running plays on intermediate distance runs, I am alright with them for the sake of the under.
However, I am not sold that they will succeed in the run game against this underrated Jets run defense that held the bills to just 41 yards on the ground by running backs on 18 attempts (2.27 yards per carry for the math wizards out there).
The 49ers may be down to their third-string center if second-stringer Ben Garland is out with an ankle, which will only enhance the difficulty they may have running the ball. If the run game can’t get going to set up the passing game, this 49ers offense could be in serious trouble Week 2.
Week 2 NFL Over/Under pick wrap-up
Given the many metrics that go into the over/under model, we have a score prediction of just above 38. This is before we factor in the many injuries on both sides of the ball, so I would push this projected total even further down, giving us tremendous value on this under.
Given the ineptitudes of both offenses highlighted above and the injuries listed, I think this under cashes with ease as long as we can avoid defensive and special teams touchdowns. Therefore, I am willing to lay 2 units here for my NFL Week 2 pick.
49ers vs. Jets under 42.5 points -107 2 units
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Week 2 NFL totals from other PFN Betting Analysts
Chris Smith’s Best Bet: Vikings-Colts O47.5 | -115 for 1U
Both of these teams are coming off disappointing losses as Week 1 favorites. We knew the Vikings young secondary would be challenged this season, and they were torched by Aaron Rodgers last Sunday afternoon.
The Colts defense, meanwhile, gave up 27 points to a pesky Jacksonville team that had no trouble matriculating the ball downfield. On the offensive side of the football, Philip Rivers was impressive in his Indianapolis debut. The Colts somehow managed only 20 points against the Jaguars despite putting up 445 yards and not punting once.
While a decent portion of the Vikings 522 yards and 34 points were posted in garbage time, I think both teams threaten the 30 point mark in a potential shootout here on the turf in Minnesota.