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HOME > > Casino City's Week 2 NFL Circa Million V 2023 Pro Football Contest Picks

Casino City's Week 2 NFL Circa Million V 2023 Pro Football Contest Picks

15 September 2023

By Dan Ippolito

Last night the Philadelphia Eagles moved to 2-0 on the season and the Minnesota Vikings dropped to 0-2. As Week 2 officially began, the Casino City team aims to have a better week with picks than Week 1. With nearly 5,300 entries in the Circa Million, our 2-3 opening week record would have us tied with 1,622 others. Only 140 had a perfect 5-0 week, and there was 153 that failed to get a single game correct. Let’s take a look at what we hope to be our first, but not last, 5-0 week of the season.

Los Angeles Chargers -3 over Tennessee
Following last week’s season-opening, 36-34, loss to the Miami Dolphins, edge rusher Khalil Mack said, “I feel like it’s a rare occasion when you’ve got two guys [Miami quarterback and wide receiver Tua Tagovailoa and Tyreek Hill, respectively] like that on the field at the same time, blazing up and down the field.”

That is a very true statement, and luckily, the Chargers won’t run into any such problem this Sunday when they travel to face the Titans. However, it’s looking as if Los Angeles might be without Austin Ekeler as he’s missed multiple days of practice this week with an ankle injury. Even without their star running back, the Chargers are in good hands behind quarterback Justin Herbert, who despite only throwing for 229 yards and one score last week, will look to pick up the pace in new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore’s system.

The Titans, who opened their season with a 16-15 loss in New Orleans, will be in a similar boat for their home opener as they too might be without one if their star players. Wideout DeAndre Hopkins got off to a fast start in his Tennessee debut last weekend as he clearly established himself as a top target, but he too has missed multiple days of practice with an ankle injury. Unlike the Chargers though, the quarterback picture in Tennessee isn’t as bright as Ryan Tannehill is coming of a three-interception game where he failed to throw a touchdown and completed less than half of his passes. It’s going to be up to star running back Derrick Henry, who only totaled 65 yards on 15 carries last week, to keep the defense honest.

One of these two teams is going to start the season 0-2 and it won’t be the Chargers because there’s no way Mack and the rest of the defense, even if linebacker Joey Bosa sits out with a hamstring issue, is going to let only one star beat them.

Green Bay +1 over Atlanta
Last week, the Packers, without Aaron Rodgers under center for the first time in 18 years, gave the Green Bay fans all it could ask for behind Jordan Love, who despite needing to get his completion percentage up (55%) threw three touchdown passes and no interceptions.

This matchup with the Atlanta Falcons could come down to the injury report. Aaron Jones, who ran for two total touchdowns and over 120 yards, missed the last two days of Packers’ practice with a hamstring injury. Questionable to play Sunday afternoon, Jones is a major piece of this offense and a big reason it was able to score 38 points last week on the road at Chicago.

If Jones can’t go, Green Bay has backup AJ Dillion who is more of a power runner, but can also catch a pass and make a man miss.

The Atlanta Falcons beat the Carolina Panthers 24-10 in the team’s home opener, but because of how mediocre the Panthers looked, the Falcons didn’t really look dominant or anything like that. It was more of Carolina beating itself.

Kansas City -3 over Jacksonville
We think it is safe to say that the upset of Week 1 was the Detroit Lions going to Kansas City and taking down the defending Super Bowl champs, 21-20, on opening night. Yes, the best weapon and best tight end in football, Travis Kelce, was missing, but he has returned to practice and was a limited participant over the last few days.

Luckily for the Chiefs, only one team in their division, the Las Vegas Raiders, won in Week 1 but you definitely don’t want to put yourself in a bigger hole and start the year at 0-2.

There is going to be some fire under this Kansas City team. If both Kelce and defensive tackle Chris Jones are back on the field, expect impact right away on both sides of the football.

Patrick Mahomes was definitely not his usual self without Kelce as he failed to reach 230 passing yards. We have a tough time believing that will be the case come Sunday, so we’re expecting to see the Chiefs make a statement to the rest of the league.

Cincinnati -3.5 over Baltimore
One word to describe the opening game for the Cincinnati Bengals. Gross. It was gross in regards to the weather, which contributed to the extremely poor and disappointing play from the Bengals on the road against the Browns.

What was predicted to be one of the most high-powered offenses in football, the Bengals put up three points and never found the endzone. Now they have their home opener against the Baltimore Ravens, who defeated an unchallenging Houston Texans team, 25-9, at home.

Bengals’ QB Joe Burrow, currently the highest-paid player in football, is looking to see that explosive offense come back to life. Burrow’s 82 passing yards was not par for his course and neither is 39 receiving yards from Ja’Marr Chase. If you had Tee Higgins on your fantasy team last week, we feel your pain as he had zero catches on the day.

Similar to the Chiefs, don’t be surprised to see the Bengals come out firing on all cylinders. After going through camp, OTAs, and preseason with their eyes locked on Week 1, then put up just three points, that has to leave a sour taste in the Bengals’ mouths.

Dallas -8.5 over New York (AFC)
The saying, “How ‘bout them Cowboys” is 30 years in the making, made famous by then coaching legend Jimmy Johnson, but it was never truer than after last week’s Sunday Night Football season-opening 40-0 pounding of the New York Giants on the road.

From the start, Dallas was all over the G-Men as they returned a blocked field goal 58 yards for a touchdown on the opening series. Add in two interceptions, one of which was a pick six, and seven sacks by the defense, and there really wasn’t much that the offense had to do in this victory. Nevertheless, quarterback Dak Prescott threw for 143 yards and new lead running back Tony Pollard punched in two scores.

Coming into the season, all eyes were on the Jets as they seemed to have added the piece that could put them on the road to a Super Bowl run. Four plays later; however, the piece also-known-as quarterback Aaron Rodgers sat on the field in despair after getting sacked as it was clear he knew right away something bad had happened when he was going to the turf. And, he was right, as yesterday, the four-time NFL MVP underwent surgery to repair his torn Achilles tendon. Despite the injury to Rodgers, the Jets went on to win the game in shocking fashion as rookie Xavier Gibson returned a punt 65 yards for a touchdown in overtime. Now though the season, at least for the time being, is in the hands of third-year quarterback Zach Wilson, who New York went out of its way to deem him non-starter material prior to this season.

Dallas might not end up hoisting the Lombardi Trophy as it did the year of Johnson’s famous quote, but it’s sure going to ride its wave of emotion right over another New York team for a home-opening victory.

Week 1 Results: 2-3
Season Record: 2-3

Dan Ippolito
As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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