Breaking News (Fri Sep 21 2018 – 1pm CST): Corey Clement and Latavius Murray will start this week.
Murray in particular has a great game script versus the Bills weak run D. The Vikings will go up early and then need Murray to run out the clock. It’s hard to see the Bills scoring more than once against the Vikings’ defense, which is going to have Josh Allen running for his life, while the Vikings offense should be able to name its score.
Preview of the Bills (+16.5, +1000) vs Vikings (-16.5, -2000)
Over/Under = 41
The Bills have allowed at least 4 TDs in each of their first two games, and the Vikings will probably keep that going. Not that Buffalo’s defense is that bad; it helped get them in the playoffs last year. But with a completely toothless offense, the unit is having to spend too much time on the field and too often is being put in short-field situations.
Latavius Murray should get a large workload this week, given the nature of the matchup, and an excellent chance he gets into the end zone. Not that the Bills are garbage against the run (they’re allowing 3.8 per carry), but the nature of the way they defend tends to prompt opponents to run against them, particularly in the red zone. The Bills have allowed 4 rushing touchdowns, and they allowed a league-high 22 last year (when they ranked 29th in run defense). Latavius Murray has had just over half as many carries as Cook so far (but with no receptions).
The Vikings Defense looks like the No. 1 option on the board this week. It’s at home and has a talented, aggressive front, while Buffalo is trotting out a rookie quarterback who really shouldn’t be on the field right now — he’s not there in terms of accuracy and decision making, and he’s got a tendency to hold the ball too long. Including the preseason, Josh Allen has taken 15 sacks so far while attempting only 92 passes. Good chance here that he’ll take 4-plus sacks, with multiple turnovers.
Even Dave Tuley (noted Dog bettor) has passed on Bills +16.5. This will be a long bloody game.
Preview of the Colts (+7, +240 ) vs Eagles (-7, -300)
Over/Under = 47.5
The Eagles have their franchise quarterback back, and that should immediately elevate this offense back among the league’s best on a weekly basis. Maybe. Some of their other skill players are hurting or sidelined, and the quarterback could have some rust to shake off. Indianapolis’ defense, meanwhile, looks improved.
The Colts had a bad run defense a year ago (26th) and made Joe Mixon look good (17 carries, 95 yards) in the opener, but stuffed Adrian Peterson (11 for 20) for most of last week. Call it a below-average run defense, and some chance for Clement to finish with good numbers.
The Eagles Defense has a strong pass rush (6 sacks) and some opportunism (2 interceptions and a fumble recovery). It’s not as dangerous on returns if Darren Sproles remains sidelined with a hamstring injury, which is the early guess. It will get some chances for sacks and turnovers off Andrew Luck. He’s served up 3 interceptions (good for the Eagles) and only 3 sacks, but he’s still the same guy, operating behind a lesser line, who was dropped 41 times in his last full season. Left tackle Anthony Castonzo has missed both games to start the season, apparently nearing a return before suffering a setback last week. His continued absence, if that’s how it plays out, will be a boost to this pass rush.
New Orleans Saints (+3, +125) @ Atlanta Falcons (-3, -145)
Over/Under = 53.5
The Saints go marching on the road…(Preview coming soon).