NFL Week 2 schedule and game-by-game predictions (updated)

NFL Week 2 will start with an all-Ohio outing between the Bengals and Browns on Thursday night. It concludes with the Las Vegas Raiders hosting the New Orleans Saints in their first ever game in the desert metropolis.

Week 2 of the NFL season is underway with the Cleveland Browns delivering a thrilling win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday Night Football. The action will roll into Sunday, before it concludes with the Las Vegas Raiders hosting the New Orleans Saints in their first ever game in the desert metropolis.

In between, the Colts will host a Minnesota Vikings reeling from a Week 1 loss to Green Bay. Meanwhile, all eyes will be on Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady after a brutal debut in a loss to the Saints.

Here, we provide you with the full schedule and a prediction for each game on the NFL Week 2 slate.

(Last Update: Saturday at 4:44 pm EDT, September 19, 2020)

Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Lions-Packers point spread: Packers -5.5 (46.0 over/under)

Detroit’s brutal loss to Chicago in Week 1 acts as a major backdrop here. The same can be said about Aaron Rodgers’ performance in the Packers’ shocking blowout win over the Minnesota Vikings. Two teams going in different trajectories just one game into the season. Though, there’s more to look at here.

Related: Winners and losers from Packers victory over Vikings

Normally, I would conclude that there’s not much to like here from a Lions perspective. This is until we realize that Detroit lost its two games against Green Bay by a combined four points last season. Remember, that was a Packers team we saw make it to the NFC Championship Game in 2019.

On the field, Matthew Stafford should have some success against a questionable Packers secondary. The biggest issue here will be pass protection with Za’Darius Smith and Preston Smith doing their thing against the Lions’ offensive line. On the other hand, Aaron Rodgers should eat against a suspect Detroit defense. NFL Week 2 predictions: Packers 30, Lions 20

New York Giants at Chicago Bears

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Giants-Bears point spread: Bears -5.5 (43.5 over/under)

Daniel Jones is looking to take the next step as a sophomore after a surprisingly good rookie campaign under center. That did not happen Week 1 against the Steelers. Jones threw two interceptions, including this game-changing pick into the hands of T.J. Watt. Meanwhile, Saquon Barkley did absolutely nothing on the ground.

Related: Winners/losers from Steelers big win over Giants

On the other hand, fans were calling for Nick Foles to replace Mitchell Trubisky under center Week 1 against the Lions. With everyone questioning him, the fourth-year quarterback threw three fourth-quarter touchdowns to bring Chicago back from a double-digit deficit. Expect these two trends to continue in Week 2.

Week 2 NFL predictions: Bears 20, Giants 16

Los Angeles Rams at Philadelphia Eagles

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Rams-Eagles point spread: Eagles -4.5 (49.5 over/under)

Two teams coming off pedestrian 2019 seasons looking to make their way back in the NFC title conversation. This is an absolutely huge Week 2 conference matchup between the Rams and Eagles in Philadelphia.

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As for the Eagles, they blew a 17-0 lead to the Washington Football Team in Week 1, only to lose by the score of 27-7. The team is also dealing with a ton of injuries. This is not a great backdrop as Philadelphia looks to even its record at 1-1.

Related: Rams set for further regression in 2020

I am still not at the point that I can trust Jared Goff to do much of anything against a good defense. Now that Philadelphia boasts a shutdown corner in Darius Slay and without much to work with at wide receiver following the trade of Brandin Cooks, that’s magnified further.

With all of this said, Los Angeles was able to pull off an impressive Week 1 win over the Dallas Cowboys. Goff played well. The defense stepped up when it needed to the most. Look for the Rams to carry that momentum into Week 2. NFL Week 2 predictions: Rams 28, Eagles 24

Atlanta Falcons at Dallas Cowboys

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Falcons-Cowboys point spread: Cowboys -7 (50.0 over/under)

The Atlanta Falcons’ defense let the likes of Russell Wilson and D.K. Metcalf exploit them big time in a 38-25 Week 1 home loss to the Seattle Seahawks. Given just how good the Cowboys’ offense can be, that’s likely going to be the biggest difference here.

Yet another NFC matchup between two teams coming off some struggles last season, Dallas has an opportunity to make a major statement here. Ezekiel Elliott, Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup and CeeDee Lamb represent a skill-position group more than capable of marching up and down the field against the Falcons defense that ranked in the bottom 13 a season ago and is without multiple veteran contributors from years past.

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As for the Falcons, they also have a dynamic skill-position group for former NFL MVP Matt Ryan to rely on. Todd Gurley is looking for a rebirth in Atlanta. Meanwhile, Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley represent one of the best receiver tandems in the NFL. That should be enough for Atlanta to keep with the Cowboys given that the secondary is a major question mark in Big D.

Related: Ranking the best WR tandems in the NFL

If Week 1 showed us anything, it’s that Dallas should be able to rebound on offense against a bad Falcons defense. Even if Atlanta is able to keep pace, don’t expect it to be able to hang with the Cowboys in a high-scoring affair.

Week 2 NFL predictions: Cowboys 34, Falcons 23

Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Panthers-Buccaneers point spread: Buccaneers -8. (48.0 over/under)

The second consecutive divisional matchup for Tom Brady as he begins his Buccaneers career. Unlike Week 1 against the Saints, he has a major advantage. The best wide receiver tandem in the NFL — Mike Evans and Chris Godwin — taking on an inexperienced Panthers cornerback group. That’s going to be a major backdrop to this game in Tampa.

Unfortunately for Brady, he did not look good in his Buccaneers debut in Week 1. That included a brutal pick-six in the second half.

As it relates to the Panthers, they dropped a narrow home affair to the upstart Las Vegas Raiders. It’s a game that saw the Raiders go for almost 400 yards of total offense. Simply put, Carolina’s inexperienced defense should help Brady improve off last week’s performance.

On the other side of the ball, I am intrigued to see how the backfield of Teddy Bridgewater and Christian McCaffrey perform against a still-porous Buccaneers defense. That will be the major key for Tampa as it looks to earn a playoff appearance under Mr. Brady. Week 2 NFL predictions: Buccaneers 27, Panthers 23

San Francisco 49ers at New York Jets

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

49ers-Jets point spread: 49ers -6.5 (43.5 over/under)

What an ugly Week 1 loss for the defending NFC champions. Without Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk in the mix, Jimmy Garoppolo could not get anything done against the Arizona Cardinals. He struggled with accuracy throughout the game, leading directly to a 27-24 home loss.

Injury update: 49ers place Richard Sherman on injured reserve

While the Jets did not come out on top over a superior Bills team in Week 1, they looked better than San Francisco.

With that said, really not much to like from a Jets perspective in this game. There’s very little reason to believe that a skill-position group without the overrated Le’Veon Bell and a three wide receiver set of Breshad Perriman, Jamison Crowder and Chris Hogan can do anything against the No. 1-ranked defense in the NFL. New York’s bad offensive line will also be no match for Nick Bosa, Ark Armstead and Dee Ford. 

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The situation is vastly different for San Francisco’s offense. Without Jamal Adams at safety, the Jets secondary is going to be a major issue. Expect Jimmy Garoppolo to eat big time, even though both Deebo Samuel and George Kittle are out. This game won’t be close. NFL Week 2 predictions: 49ers 27, Jets 10

Jacksonville Jaguars at Tennessee Titans

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, CBS

Jaguars-Titans point spread: Titans -10 (42.5 over/under)

Jacksonville has moved on from a half-dozen former Pro Bowl defenders that helped the team to a surprising AFC Championship Game appearance back in 2017. It’s relying on a skill-position group consisting of James Robinson, Chris Conley and D.J. Chark to help second-year quarterback Gardner Minshew. We’re talking about one of the least-talented teams in the NFL.

Interestingly enough, that did not look to be the case during a Week 1 in over Philip Rivers and the Indianapolis Colts. After struggling out of the gate, Minshew led a potent Jaguars offensive attack to a 27-20 upset win. It was among the most-stunning developments of Week 1.

All the while, Tennessee is coming off a narrow win over the Broncos in Week 1. The team did not play the brand of football that saw it earn a surprise trip to the AFC Championship Game last season. Even then, Derrick Henry went for 116 yards on the ground and Ryan Tannehill threw two touchdowns without a pick against a stout Broncos defense. This should not be too close. NFL Week 2 predictions: Titans 31, Jaguars 13

Denver Broncos at Pittsburgh Steelers

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, CBS

Broncos-Steelers point spread: Steelers -5 (44.5 over/under)

One of the more intriguing games on the Week 2 schedule, both the Broncos and Steelers are looking to return to prominence in the AFC after down 2019 seasons. For the home standing Steelers, that means future Hall of Fame quarterback Ben Roethlisberger returning from injury. Big Ben looked great in the opener, connecting with JuJu Smith-Schuster on two touchdowns last week. That’s no small thing given how much the wide receiver struggled without Big Ben in the mix last season.

Unfortunately for Denver, a summer of high expectations came crashing down ahead of Week 1 after star edge rusher Von Miller was lost for what is likely the season with an ankle injury. Denver’s Week 1 loss to Tennessee also included injuries to Pro Bowlers, running back Phillip Lindsay and cornerback A.J. Bouye.

This is going to be an issue against a Steelers team that looked like a well-oiled machine in a blowout win over the Giants in Week 1. Specifically, we’re having a hard time imagining Drew Lock doing much in the face of an elite Steelers defensive front seven. Just ask Daniel Jones. NFL Week 2 predictions: Steelers 28, Broncos 24

Buffalo Bills at Miami Dolphins

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, CBS

Bills-Dolphins point spread: Bills -3 (43.0 over/under)

It’s going to be fun to see Buffalo’s offense take the next step in 2020. Quarterback Josh Allen is coming off a breakout 2019 campaign en route to leading the Bills to a surprise playoff appearance. He now has the dynamic Stefon Diggs to toss the rock to. At issue here in Week 2, Buffalo will be going up against an elite Dolphins secondary that includes high-priced corners Xavien Howard and Byron Jones. They should help limit the success Buffalo has on offense.

The good news for Allen is that he looked every bit the part in a Week 1 win over the Jets. The Third-year quarterback tallied nearly 370 total yards and three touchdowns in a 27-17 win. As for the Dolphins, Ryan Fitzpatrick and Co. could only net 11 points in an ugly loss to the New England Patriots.

Related: Bills hand Tre’Davious White record contract

There’s very little reason to believe that veteran Fitzpatrick will be able to lead his Dolphins offense to much success against a Bills defense that ranked No. 3 in the NFL last season. The likes of Tre’Davious White should be able to shut down the Fins’ offense in this AFC East tilt. NFL Week 2 predictions: Bills 17, Dolphins 9

Minnesota Vikings at Indianapolis Colts

Time/station: 1:00 PM EST, Fox

Vikings-Colts point spread: Colts -3.0 (47.0 over/under)

Brutal. There’s no other way to go about it. Minnesota was trounced by Aaron Rodgers and the Packers in Week 1, giving up big play after big play in a 43-34 loss. This does not paint the new-look Vikings defense in the best of lights.

On the other hand, Philip Rivers was downright distastrous in a Week 1 upset loss to Jacksonville. That included a late-game interception with everything on the line. It’s a continuation of what we saw from Rivers last year in Los Angeles.

There’s also a pretty interesting backdrop to this game. Pro Bowl cornerback Xavier Rhodes will be facing his former Vikings team in just his second game as a member of the Colts. Minnesota ridded itself of Rhodes’ contract this past spring after he took a major step back in 2019. I am highly intrigued to see how the veteran performs against former teammate Adam Thielen in this one.

On the other side, new Colts quarterback Rivers might have a plus-level matchup against an inexperienced group of Vikings corners that was destroyed by Green Bay in Week 1. It tends to come full circle in that I brought up Rhodes above. Though, Minnesota also moved on from Trae Waynes and Mackensie Alexander. Look for Rivers to take advantage of that with a big home win over Minnesota. NFL Week 2 predictions: Colts 27, Vikings 20

Washington Football Team at Arizona Cardinals

Time/station: 4:05 PM EST, Fox

Washington-Cardinals point spread: Cardinals -6.5 (45.5 over/under)

What an absolutely brilliant win for Washington head coach Ron Rivera in his debut with the team. Rivera founds his squad down 17-0 early, looking pretty much like the horrible iterations of this Washington team we have seen in the past. But in a shocking manner, Washington dropped 27 unanswered points to defeat the Eagles by double-digits.

Unfortunately for Washington, it simply does not have enough talent on offense to keep up with Kyler Murray and Co. in this one. I simply don’t envision a scenario where the likes of Steven Sims Jr. and Dontrelle Inman will be able to defeat Patrick Peterson and recently-extended All-Pro safety Budda Baker in coverage. Given how well Murray played in an upset win over San Francisco last week, that’s magnified further.

Related: Look at Washington’s improved defense

On the other side, Washington’s talented defensive line should be able to hold up against a poor Cardinals offensive line. This is the only chance it has of taking out the Cardinals in Arizona. Unfortunately for those in the nation’s capital, Murray and stud wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins will have the last laugh here. Week 3 NFL predictions: Cardinals 27, Redskins 14

Kansas City Chiefs at Los Angeles Chargers

Time/station: 4:25 PM EST, CBS

Chiefs-Chargers point spread: Chiefs -7 (51.5 over/under)

Pretty much one of the biggest early-season games on the slate, the Chargers are out to prove that they can compete with Kansas City in the AFC West. It starts with their first ever game at the new SoFi Stadium in Southern California. Unfortunately for the home team, this will not include fans being in attendance. That’s a major backdrop early in the NFL season given that teams such as the Chiefs are hosting fans.

Related: Winners/losers from Chiefs victory over Texans

From an on-field perspective, we’re not expecting Los Angeles to be terribly competitive here. The team lost star safety Derwin James to a meniscus tear during camp and will be going up against a Chiefs offense that was clicking on all cylinders Week 1 against a better Texans team.

Los Angeles might have narrowly defeated Cincinnati in Week 1. However, it simply does not have the fire power to compete with the Chiefs right now. Week 2 NFL predictions: Chiefs 31, Chargers 17

Baltimore Ravens at Houston Texans

Time/station: 4:25 PM EST, CBS

Ravens-Texans point spread: Ravens -6.5 (54.5 over/under)

Reigning NFL MVP Lamar Jackson going up against the recently-extended Deshaun Watson. This should be an absolute blast as CBS features the two Super Bowl hopefuls in a late-afternoon matchup in Houston. With that said, it’s not all about the quarterbacks here. If all things were equal, we’d give Houston a fighting chance. They are not equal.

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Simply put, the downgrade from DeAndre Hopkins to Brandin Cooks is going to hurt against one of the best secondaries in the NFL. That came to fruition during Week 1’s blowout loss to Kansas City. Taking on one of the best defenses in the NFL, Watson could very well struggle here.

The same thing can’t be said for a Ravens team coming off a blowout 38-6 win over Cleveland. Lamar Jackson looked every bit the part of the reigning NFL MVP. Even if the Texans are able to somewhat contain Jackson and Co., they don’t have enough fire power to outlast Baltimore. Week 2 NFL predictions: Ravens 28, Texans 19

New England Patriots at Seattle Seahawks

Time/station: 8:20 PM EST, NBC

Patriots-Seahawks point spread: Seahawks -3.5 (44.0 over/under)

One could technically call this a Super Bowl XLIX rematch. However, so many things have changed in the six-plus years since Pete Carroll decided to pass from the one-yard line. Primarily, Cam Newton is under center in New England after Tom Brady shockingly departed in free agency this past March. While Newton looked good during camp, there’s some major concerns over his supporting cast.

Related: Cam Newton’s career resurgence

This is only going to be magnified against a Seahawks defense that added All-Pro safety Jamal Adams to the mix during the offseason. That’s also one of the primary reasons I have a hard time picking New England to come out on top against Russell Wilson and Co even afer its season-opening win. It just won’t be able to put enough points on the board. There is a slight chance this game is relocated, but for now things look safe to play in Seattle. Week 2 NFL predictions: Seahawks 17, Patrots 10

New Orleans Saints at Las Vegas Raiders

Time/station: 8:20 PM EST, ESPN

Saints-Raiders point spread: Saints -5.5 (51.5 over/under)

Normally, I would give the Raiders a fighting chance in this one. The team’s first-ever game at the new Las Vegas’ Allegiant Stadium. So much hype in the desert metropolis. Unfortunately for head coach Jon Gruden and Co., the environment is going to be muted due to no fans being in attendance.

Injury update: Saints to be without Michael Thomas

Given Las Vegas’ strong performance to open the season against Carolina last week, I expect this team to be game. However, there’s a lot that works to the Saints’ advantage after their win over Tom Brady and Co.

Expect Drew Brees to torch an inexperienced Raiders secondary that is led by two young corners in that of Damon Arnette and Trayvon Mullen. Star receiver Michael Thomas will eat big time. Meanwhile, the Raiders simple don’t have enough firepower to go up against Brees and Co. Week 2 NFL predictions: Saints 35, Raiders 24

Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns

Time/station: 8:20 PM EST, NBC

Bengals-Browns point spread: Browns -6.5 (46.0 over/under)

Both of these Ohio teams are coming off brutal Week 1 outings. For rookie Joe Burrow and Co., that included a narrow defeat at the hands of the Chargers after Randy Bullock shanked a would-be tying field goal late in the fourth quarter. Cleveland stood absolutely no chance in a humiliating 38-6 blowout loss to Baltimore. It was a downright ugly performance.

Joe Burrow’s first road date will come against the Bengals’ division rivals on national television. As Burrow proved at LSU, no stage was too big for him. Though, it’s going to be interesting to see how he performs in his first matchup against a player in Baker Mayfield who will be a longtime rival of the quarterback.

Related: Bengals set to improve on offense in 2020

The biggest advantage for Cleveland will be its 12th-ranked rush offense a season ago against a Bengals run defense that ranked dead last.

As for the Bengals’ offense, Burrow did enough to win in his debut last week against the Chargers. Unfortunately, a would-be game-tying field goal in the end led to a narrow Cincinnati loss. Look for the Bengals to be game here.

NFL Week 2 prediction: Browns 24, Bengals 20

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