Joey P’s Week 2 NFL Picks


Each week I pick the winners of all the NFL games (or try to, anyway) without point spreads and without bias, either. 

Coming off a 10-5 week that featured one score picked right on the nose–and a few others that were close–I’ll try to keep the momentum going in Week Two.

(Note: All games will be played on Sunday afternoon unless otherwise noted.)

Houston 16, Cincinnati 13 (THURSDAY NIGHT): This is one of the tougher calls of the week. The Bengals have a quick turnaround, but they are at home again against a Houston team that was blown out at home by Jacksonville.

Baltimore 27, Cleveland 10: No matter what happened in Week 1, the Ravens were going to be the pick here. They usually don’t lose at home and they wreak havoc on young quarterbacks–aka DeShone Kizer.

Carolina 24, Buffalo 10: The Bills’ world will be turned upside down this week. For one thing, they’re not at home. For another, they don’t play the Jets again.

Arizona 20, Indianapolis 12: The Cardinals have a bad quarterback. The Colts have a worse team.

Tennessee 23, Jacksonville 17: The Jaguars are no doubt buoyed by their impressive Week 1 division win at Houston. But they’ll be limping off to London by a Titans team that’s simply too good to fall to 0-2.

Kansas City 23, Philadelphia 16: Last week I predicted the exact score of the Eagles’ win in Washington. And I’m just as confident about this one. The host Chiefs will get off to a 2-0 start.

New England 36, New Orleans 27: The Saints have had plenty of defensive problems. But (for now at least) so do the defending champs. Brady vs. Brees should be fun to watch.

Pittsburgh 23, Minnesota 20: You’ll see plenty of Super Bowl IX footage in the buildup to this one. The Steelers won that day in New Orleans and they’ll win a tough home game here.

Tampa Bay 30, Chicago 9: The Bears showed a lot of fight in the near-home upset of Atlanta. But the eventual NFC South champions — rested after a hurricane bye — are at home here and should take the win.

Los Angeles Chargers 27, Miami 17: The Dolphins are back on the field after an idle week and they have to travel west. The Chargers are coming off a valiant near-miracle Monday-night come back. Philip Rivers is more clutch than Jay Cutler will ever be.

Oakland 40, New York Jets 3: I guarantee this game will not be interrupted by the “Heidi,” as was the 1968 meeting between these two teams. Let me also guarantee that the Jets won’t win.

Dallas 26, Denver 17: This is the marquee matchup of the week. Both teams have young quarterbacks who have impressed so far. Denver is at home, but Dallas has the better team.

Los Angeles Rams 37, Washington 20: Where did THESE Rams come from? It came from the mind of wunderkind head coach, Sean McVay, that’s where. A bad Redskins team is in trouble.

Seattle 29, San Francisco 6: The Seahawks have offensive-line troubles and a defense that isn’t what it was a few short years ago. They’re tough to beat at home, though, and the 49ers aren’t the kind of team that can pull off a win.

Green Bay 27, Atlanta 19 (SUNDAY NIGHT): The national-TV cameras will show off Mercedes-Benz Stadium, complete with Chick-fil-A nobody can patronize because it’s Sunday. After this game, Falcon fans will be too frustrated to care.

New York Giants 17, Detroit 16 (MONDAY NIGHT): Due to market size, the Giants go on national TV for the second week in a row. They have a good defense and are at home … but can they stop Matthew Stafford?


About Joe Platania

Veteran beat writer, Joe Platania, is entering his 39th year in Baltimore media. He covers sports with insight, humor, and prescient eye. A former longtime member in good standing of the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association and the Pro Football Writers of America, Platania manned the CFL Stallions beat for The Avenue Newspaper Group of Essex (1994 and ’95) and the Ravens beat since the team’s inception — one of only three local writers to do so — for PressBox, The Avenue, and other local publications and radio stations. A sought-after contributor and host on talk radio and TV, he often appears on “Inside PressBox” (10:30 a.m. Sundays) and he can be heard at 10 a.m. Saturdays on the “Purple Pride Report,” WQLL-AM (1370). He has also appeared on WMAR-TV’s “Good Morning Maryland” (2009), Comcast SportsNet’s “Washington Post Live” (2004-06), and WJZ-TV’s “Football Talk” postgame show — with legend Marty Bass (2002-04). Platania is the only sports journalist in Maryland history to have been a finalist for both the annual Sportscaster of the Year award (1998, which he won) and Sportswriter of the Year (2010). He is also a four-time Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Press Association award winner. Platania is a graduate of St. Joseph’s (Cockeysville), Calvert Hall College High School, and Towson University, where he earned a degree in Mass Communications. He lives in Cockeysville, MD.

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