Looking at the point spreads for the 15 remaining games on this week’s schedule, it’s clear that some favorites are ripe for an upset. So which teams are going to get the upset train running at high speed this weekend?
Buffalo Bills at New York Jets (-2.5)
As we’ve been shouting from the rooftops since early in the summer, don’t sleep on this Bills team. Second-year quarterback Josh Allen appears to have taken a huge step in his development, and the offense is miles ahead of where it was in 2018 thanks to a revamped offensive line and significantly improved receiving corps.
On the other side, wide receiver Robby Anderson is questionable for the Jets, who also have cornerback Trumaine Johnson questionable due to a sore hamstring.
There’s a chance QB Sam Darnold and running back Le’Veon Bell lead a dynamic offensive attack that catches the Bills by surprise. However, it’s worth pointing out that the Buffalo defense is going to be scary good, and Bell hasn’t played in over a year. He could struggle out of the gate.
Indianapolis Colts at Los Angeles Chargers (-6.5)
It’s easy to assume the Colts are going to hit some hard times this season in the wake of Andrew Luck’s retirement. Yet we shouldn’t assume that QB Jacoby Brissett is going to fail. In fact, he looked good this summer and has the added benefit of having practiced with the Colts’ starting offense throughout training camp. So he’s not being thrown to the wolves.
Additionally, Indy has some enticing talent on offense to complement Brissett. Marlon Mack appears to be ready for a full load as the featured back. The offensive line is dominant. Tight end Eric Ebron is capable of going off every week (and he won’t have Derwin James, who is on injured reserve, to contend with), and the receiving corps is downright dangerous.
All the Colts need is a stellar game from their potent defense, and for Brissett to just let the game come to him. If they can see those two things come together, then a road win is certainly within reach.
Detroit Lions (-3) at Arizona Cardinals
There are some solid reasons to believe the Lions will win their road opener. They feature a defense that, on paper, should be better than it was last year. They also are going against a rookie quarterback and a Cardinals defense that could struggle to get off the field this season.
On the other hand, the Cardinals are a complete unknown quantity at this time. They didn’t really reveal any of their offensive scheme during preseason games, going with a vanilla approach so as to not tip their hand.
If we’re to believe what guys like Larry Fitzgerald and David Johnson have said about Kliff Kingsbury’s offense, rookie QB Kyler Murray is set to take the NFL by storm.
3 Potential Upsets Week 1
Bills +2.5, Cardinals +3 and Colts +6.5