New England Patriots vs Minnesota Vikings NFL Picks week 2
The NFL season started off with a bang in week 1 as there were plenty of tight games with some teams showing an improvement over last year, while others regressed and took a step back. Many survivor pool contestants were on the edge of their chairs all day as the Jacksonville Jaguars held a 17-0 lead over the heavily favoured Philadelphia Eagles at the half, however Philly managed to come all the way back and put up 34 unanswered points on the scoreboard to eventually cover and beat the Jags 34-17. Folks who took the Chicago Bears were not so lucky as despite opening the season with a first possession Touchdown, the heavily favoured Bears were stimied by a late turnover while E.J. Manuel led the Bills to an unthinkable Overtime victory to shock the football world by starting 1-0.
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Although it is just one week into the season, teams that look like they have taken a step forward this season include the Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons, and Cincinatti Bengals. Teams that may be in for a long season and have either taken a step back or who simply have not improved include the New York Giants, St. Louis Rams, Washington Redskins and the Kansas City Chiefs. Now that we have had a week to evaluate teams across the league, week 2 provides another opportunity to relish the fact that NFL football is back!
Each week we will be predicting two or three games that we feel should help make each and every Sunday an enjoyable and profitable one!
One of, if not the biggest upset in week one was the Miami Dolphins storming back and handing Tom Brady's New England Patriots a loss to start the 2014/15 season. The Dolphins trailed 17-7 in the first half of that game, only to come back and knock off the favoured Pats by a 33-20 score. The Patriots offense was held off of the scoreboard in the second half, rare territory for the Patriots under Brady's helm. The Vikings went into St. Louis last week and beat up on an already beaten up Rams squad, forcing six punts while racking up five sacks on backup turned starting Quarterback Shaun Hill. Scoring 34 points on what was supposed to be a solid defence for the Rams is impressive, but I wouldn't put too much stock into holding the Rams to just a pair of field goals on the day.
Odds - New England Patriots -3 (+100) @ Minnesota Vikings +3 (-120)
My Pick - PATRIOTS -3 (+100) 5 Dimes
Obviously the Rams offense took a big blow when Sam Bradford went down with his second ACL tear in his young football career, and despite a miracle, the Rams offense should be stalled for the majority of the season as they look for the best possible solution at the most important position on a football team. Brady found the game's best Tight End (when healthy) in Rob Gronkowski for a TD score against Miami, but the dynamic duo combined for just 40 yards through the air, something I bet will change heading into week 2. Gronk missed the majority of last season and it's only normal for the two to have to re-develop some of their chemistry that made them one of the best Quarterback-receiver duos in the NFL. Despite putting up 34 points against the Rams, the offense cannot remain that powerful without an improved showing from Adrian Peterson.
If the Vikings MVP over the last several seasons cannot improve on his performance from last Sunday (just 75 yards on 21 carries), the Vikings offense is almost certainly not going to put up anywhere close to 34 points. Cordarrelle Patterson was the hero on Sunday, going for 102 yards on the ground with a Touchdown, but if the Patriots defence can get to former Pat Matt Cassel, Patterson will have a tough time going off like he did against St. Louis. Don't get me wrong, I don't believe the Patriots offense is as explosive as we have seen over Tom Brady's tenure as the starting Quarterback in New England, however the Pats have not gone 0-2 to start a season since... that's right, 2001, the season in which Tom Brady entered the scene for an injured Drew Bledsoe in a week two loss. Look for the veteran to grab this team by the throat and lead them to victory this Sunday.