- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers top the NFL power rankings for the second consecutive week after covering their 13.5 point spread against the Atlanta Falcons.
- Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Arizona, and San Francisco have leapt into the top five after remaining unbeaten in Week 2 of the 2021-2022 NFL season.
TAMPA, Fla. — After Week 2 of the NFL season, just seven unbeaten teams remain. The Buccaneers, last week’s top team in the power rankings, maintain their position as the team to beat in the NFL after their closest competition thus far — the Kansas City Chiefs — were defeated by a banged-up Baltimore Ravens squad. Several other top teams saw their positions slip with four newcomers to the top five.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-0, defeated the Atlanta Falcons 48-25)
After topping last week’s power rankings, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Atlanta Falcons by a 23-point margin in a game that saw the Bucs favored by 13.5 points with (-770) moneyline odds. Tampa Bay held the lead the entire game before Atlanta cut the lead down to 3 points late in the third quarter.
The Bucs’ offense was explosive against a soft Atlanta secondary, with Tom Brady throwing five touchdowns, including two apiece to Mike Evans and Rob Gronkowski.
After a disappointing Week 1 showing for star receiver Mike Evans, he proved himself to still be Brady’s top receiving threat, pacing the team in targets with nine. He also surpassed both his total receiving yards prop (57.5 yards) with 75 yards and his total receptions prop (4.5) with 5 catches for the night.
The defense was shaky at times, allowing Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan to throw for 300 yards and two touchdowns, surpassing both his passing yardage prop and passing touchdown prop of 285.5 yards and 1.5 touchdowns; however, it was the defensive unit that eventually secured Tampa Bay the victory, after Mike Edwards returned two interceptions for touchdowns late in the fourth quarter.
Tom Brady and the Bucs look to improve to 3-0 in Week 3 with a tough test against the also unbeaten Los Angeles Rams.
Los Angeles Rams (2-0, defeated the Indianapolis Colts 27-24)
The Los Angeles Rams defeated the Indianapolis Colts 27-24, just falling short of covering the 4 point spread but cashing for moneyline (-200) sports bettors.
WR Cooper Kupp was the primary playmaker for the Rams, pacing the team in targets (11), receptions (9), reception yards (163), and touchdowns (2). His 9 receptions for 163 yards blew past his total receptions and receiving yards props of 5.5 receptions and 69.5 yards respectively.
The running game was also fairly effective, with lead back Darrell Henderson, Jr. rushing for 53 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries, just falling short of his total carries prop (14.5) and rushing yards (58.5), but still managing to find pay dirt.
Perhaps most impressive was the Rams’ front seven, which limited star Colts running back Jonathan Taylor to just 51 rushing yards and no touchdowns, falling well short of his total rushing yardage prop of 65.5.
The Rams look to leverage their well-rounded approach at staying undefeated against the power ranking-leading Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 3.
Arizona Cardinals (2-0, defeated the Minnesota Vikings 34-33)
The Arizona Cardinals defeated the Minnesota Vikings by a slim one-point margin, failing to cover the spread of 3.5 points but still cashing in on their (-200) moneyline odds.
Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray had another fantastic showing in week 2, besting his total passing yardage prop of 276.5 with a whopping 400 — he also surpassed his total completions prop of 24.5 with 29.
Arizona’s backfield situation remains unclear, but it seems as though Chase Edmonds is primed to take over as the lead back. Both Chase Edmonds and James Conner tallied eight carries, though Edmonds out-rushed Conner by 20 yards. Edmonds also was the only back involved in the passing game for Arizona, tallying 5 receptions for 29 yards.
While Edmonds fell short of his total rushing attempts prop of 10.5, he managed to best his total rushing yards (43.5), total receiving yards (23.5), and total receptions (3.5) props.
The main question surrounding Arizona is their secondary, as they have allowed 462 yards through the air in their first two showings, including 244 yards and 3 touchdowns by Kirk Cousins in Week 2.
Arizona looks to remain unbeaten against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 3.
San Francisco 49ers (2-0, defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 17-11)
The San Francisco 49ers defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 17-11, covering the 3 point spread and cashing on their (-148) moneyline odds.
The 49ers leaned heavily on the running game in Week 2 as they took the lead in the second quarter and did not relinquish it for the remainder of the game. San Francisco tallied 38 rushing plays to 30 passes, with seven different players logging a carry.
Running back Elijah Mitchell stepped into the lead back role after Raheem Mostert went down with a season-ending injury and performed admirably in Week 1, tallying 19 carries for 104 yards and a touchdown; however, he slowed down in Week 2, tallying just 42 rushing yards on 17 carries, well short of his total rushing yardage prop of 55.5 yards.
Wide receiver Deebo Samuel led the 49ers receiving corps, surpassing his total receptions prop (5.5) with 6 catches and his total receiving yardage prop (60.5) with 93 yards.
A big question heading into Week 3 is George Kittle, who has tallied just 8 total receptions on the year after being the primary target hog for the 49ers for the majority of his career. Kittle fell well short of his total receiving yardage prop (69.5) with just 17 yards as well as his total receptions prop (5.5) with 4.
The 49ers will likely look to get Kittle more involved in their Week 3 showdown against the Green Bay Packers.
Las Vegas Raiders (2-0, defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 26-17)
The Las Vegas Raiders defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers by a 9 point margin in a game that saw the Raiders as 5.5 point underdogs with (+190) moneyline odds.
With star running back Josh Jacobs sidelined for their Week 2 matchup, it was expected for Kenyan Drake to step in as the primary back; however, this never materialized, as Drake was out-carried 13-7 by Peyton Barber with Drake managing just 9 yards. Drake failed to reach both his total rushing yards prop (45.5) and carries (12.5) in Week 2.
While the rushing game was in a bit of flux, the Raiders saw their passing game perform a more well-rounded outing in Week 2, with seven different receivers logging multiple receptions and four of them tallying five receptions. The receiving corps was headlined by Henry Ruggs III, who tallied 5 receptions for 113 yards and a touchdown — easily surpassing his total receptions prop (2.5) and receiving yardage prop (36.5) after a very disappointing Week 1 showing.
Star tight end Darren Waller put up a pedestrian effort in Week 2 after a dominant Week 1. Waller failed to reach both his total receiving yards prop (79.5) with 65 yards and his total receptions prop (6.5) with 5 receptions.
Jon Gruden and the Raiders will look to have a healthy Josh Jacobs to anchor the running game and hope for a return to the mean by Waller in their Week 3 matchup against the Miami Dolphins.
Things are definitely heating up in the NFL and it’s only just begun.