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Miami at LAS VEGAS (-3')

By Gus Augustine, Featured Handicapper


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Raise your hand if you thought the Las Vegas Raiders would be 2-0 after the first two weeks of the season. Put your damn hands down! The only person I know who had the Raiders opening the season 2-0 was Chris Jordan, who wrote several win total predictions for this site, and he said the Raiders would open 2-0.

They'll move to 3-0 with a home win and cover against the Miami Dolphins, who were brought down to earth by the Buffalo Bills last week. The Fins opened the season thinking they had beaten the all-might New England Patriots, but the fact is they stymied a rookie quarterback - end of story.

This week the Dolphins get the league passing leader in Derek Carr, and face a stifling defense that has Pro Football Focus' top-ranked edge rusher, Maxx Crosby.

On either side, the Raiders will be tough to handle, as they've found out themselves just how good their passing game is with a variety of talents who can do multi-faceted things, from tight end Darren Waller off the line, to speedy Henry Ruggs, to one-on-one nightmare Bryan Edwards, to cockstrong Hunter Renfrow, to do-it-all Zay Jones... this team is loaded.

I know Carr is questionable, but he has to be listed as such. Trust me, this dude is playing. He's been back, rehabbed his ankle, gotten treatment, done proprioception work - he won't miss this game.

On the other hand, Miami QB Tua Tagovailoa is considered "day-to-day" with a rib injury. That'll be tough to endure, even if he plays, especially against a ferocious defense that already forced Lamar Jackson to fumble the game away, and then stopped the Steelers on a short week.

Buy the half point anywhere between -2 1/2 and -4 1/2 and play the Raiders.

1* RAIDERS



N.Y. Jets at DENVER (-10)

By Chris Jordan, Featured Handicapper


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The Denver Broncos and the Las Vegas Raiders are the only 2-0 teams in the AFC.

The hapless New York Jets aren't about to come into Denver and ruin that, let alone hang by 10 points. The Broncos have a gimme here, knowing the Raiders have their hands full with the Miami Dolphins in Vegas.

The Zach Wilson project hasn't formulated that well, yet. The Jets have the 26th-ranked offense (294.0 yards per game), while checking in at 22 with their rushing game (98.5), and dead last at No. 32 in passing (195.5). It's no wonder after two weeks the Jets rank 31st with their scoring offense (10.0 points per game).

Denver, on the other hand, has the seventh-best overall offense (409.0 yards per game), ranks fifth in rushing (130.5), 11th in passing (278.5) and is tied for 13th in scoring offense (25.0 points per game).

None of that will bode well for the Jets' deense, even though it ranks in the upper half of the league in the appropriate categories. Personally, I think the Broncos will offer much more than the Panthers and Patriots did in the first two weeks.

When you consider you have a guy like Teddy Bridgewater, who can hurt you with his legs, but who has attempted more throws over 20 yards than any other quarterback, it'll be tough for the Jets to transition and make adjustments on the road and in Denver. Especially since the vertical choices Bridgewater has made, has also allowed the Broncos to run the ball efficiently.

The only obstacle in this one is the Broncos looking past the Jets, and onto the Baltimore Ravens in Week 4. Fortunately for the Broncos, that game is in Denver.

The focus will be on on another double-digit win, as the Broncos won at the Giants by 14 and at Jacksonville by 10.

For the home opener, expect a big win.

2* BRONCOS