Top-5 Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises
by DS WilliamsonThe sad sack of the week goes to Zane Gonzalez, the Cleveland kicker who missed two extra points and a pair of field goals while watching helplessly from the sidelines New Orleans won the game on a 44-yard blast from his opposite, Will Lutz. I mean, it's Cleveland. Them losing a heart breaking game shouldn't qualify as a "surprise", should it? Continue down below to see the real Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises.
1. Bills Cornerback Vontae Davis Quits At Halftime (BUF +7.5 loses 20-31 to LAC) Buffalo Bills cornerback Vontae Davis literally threw in the towel at halftime. Sure, the L.A. Chargers were up big, but that didn’t give Davis an excuse to just quit. He told Bills’ coach Sean McDermott that he “was done”. Later, Davis said that reality had hit him and that, “I shouldn’t be out there anymore.” On a crazy NFL Sunday, Davis saying, See ya later! qualifies as the biggest shocker of all during what was an incredibly busy day of football.
Week 3: Buffalo at Minnesota -16.5
2. Mahomes Throws 6 TDs Against Steelers (KC +4.5 defeats PIT 42-37) Patrick Mahomes made my list in Week 1, but he returns in Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises by throwing 6 TD passes against what was supposed to be a good Pittsburgh Steelers’ defense. Mahomes dominated the Steel (Paper Mache?) Curtain on Sunday. The Texas Tech product might already be one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL because in two straight weeks he’s out-dueled two studs in Philip Rivers and Ben Roethlisberger. He gets a chance to outshine the $137.5 million man next weekend when the Chiefs host the Niners and Jimmy Garoppolo. Andy Reid has once again found his quarterback of the future.
Week 3: San Francisco at Kansas City -6.0
3. Jacksonville Wins Thanks To Bortles (JAX +2.0 defeats NE 31-20) This is technically not a stunner given that many NFL handicappers thought Jacksonville would beat the New England Patriots on Sunday. After all, if not for Tom Brady’s heroics in the AFC Championship, the Jags might have battled Philly in last season’s Super Bowl. So the revenge game angle on this matchup was a pretty intense focus. But, no NFL handicapper thought the Jags would beat the Patriots this way, behind 4 TD passes and zero interceptions from quarterback Blake Bortles. What makes this one of the crazier Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises is the fact that Bortles also ran for 35 yards, which resulted in multiple first downs.
Bortles was lambasted last year for his performance in the AFC Championship game, and was further roasted when the team surprisingly signed him to a 3 year deal worth $18 million per ($54M total). This game was vindication for not only Bortles, but the Jaguars as well. They won the game without running back Leonard Fournette, making this performance even more outrageous. Pats fans will tell you it's "just the regular season", but this is the type of win that legitimizes a contender. A big monkey just jumped off of Bortles' back.
Week 3: Tennessee at Jacksonville -6.5
4. Chucky’s Raiders Fall To 0-2 Thanks To Another Second-Half Collapse (OAK +6.0 Loses 19-20 to DEN) We might have to rethink the Jon Gruden genius label after Chucky’s team lost to the AFC West rival Denver Broncos. Wait...nobody was saying that after a wonky off-season? Even still, Gruden’s now winless in his first 2 games since returning to the NFL. A loss to the Rams is forgivable to a certain extent, but the Raiders had this game in the bag.
After what amounted to a dogfight in the first half, the Raiders went up 19-7 in the third quarter thanks to a Derek Carr touchdown pass to Seth Roberts. But then the Broncos stormed back, staging an upset of sorts in Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises by stifling the Oakland offense while routinely putting themselves in scoring position as they posted twenty unanswered points. Though a small sample size, the Oakland Raiders have now been outscored 7-43 in the second half through two weeks.
If that's a second half stat that doesn't get you excited for live betting, I don't know what will. The Raiders have a lot to face up to. The defensive woes without Khlalil Mack are self explanatory, but the offensive issues plaguing this team are worrisome to say the least. At the very, very, very least, the Raiders covered the spread.
Week 3: Oakland at Miami -3.0
5. Washington Can't Beat Indianapolis's Defense?! (WAS -6.0 loses 9-21 to IND) After pummeling the Arizona Cardinals 24-6, Washington sure looked good heading into their game against the Indianapolis Colts. Most every NFL handicapper on the planet thought Washington would cover as 6-point home favorites. The only fear here was Andrew Luck having a big day and pulling a rabbit out of his hat.
That didn’t happen, but not because Colts’ quarterback Andrew Luck went off. Indy's franchise star went 21-for-31 with 179 yards, 2 touchdowns and 2 picks. That's a stat line that credits Washington's above average defensive personnel. But after Smith dismantled the Cardinals in Week 1, he was forced to throw 46 attempts and accumulated 292 yards with zero touchdowns against a gettable Indy defense. The run game, which was limited all day, gained just 2.9 YPC for a total of 65 yards on the day while the whole team tallied just 9 points against a Colts’ defense that allowed Cincinnati to score 34 points in Week 1.
Washington isn’t a very good football team, and while nobody thought they would be world beaters, everyone at least gave credence to the union of Alex Smith and Jay Gruden in a west coast offense that seemed like a perfect marriage. Anybody banking on a resurgent Redskins team with a high-flying west coast offense needs to pump the brakes. Washington's porous offensive outing also gets a mention in Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises because they had home field advantage.
Probably doesn't help that Green Bay is coming to town next weekend either.
Week 3: Green Bay -3.0 at Washington
Honorable Mention: Fitzmagic Does It Again! (TB +3.0 defeats PHI 27-21) I mean, how can I write an edition of Week 2 NFL Sunday Surprises without mentioning Fitzmagic? The Bucs pivot threw for 402 yards, 4 touchdowns and a score while blasting the Eagles 27-21 in a huge, huge win. This is making the return of Jameis Winston to the starting role even more tenuous. Fitzmagic gets the grand stage of Monday Night Football to show if he's the real deal when Tampa hosts the Pittsburgh Steelers next week as +2.5 home dogs.
Don't forget to catch the Seahawks-Bears game tonight on Monday Night Football starting at 8:15pm ET!