Sports

N.F.L. Week 2 Predictions: Our Picks Against the Spread

Las Vegas Raiders at Pittsburgh Steelers, 1 p.m., CBS

Line: Steelers -6.5 | Total: 48.5

This will be a chess match between Raiders tight end Darren Waller, who had 105 receiving yards in Monday’s win, and the Steelers defense, which figures to rely heavily on the versatility of safety Minkah Fitzpatrick. If the Steelers can disrupt Waller’s routes at all, they will force Derek Carr — who targeted Waller 19 times Monday — to hold the ball longer while looking for the Raiders’ other receiving threats, Henry Ruggs III and Hunter Renfrow.

The Raiders’ rookie right tackle, Alex Leatherwood, struggled with pass protection in the opener and now must face T.J. Watt, a Defensive Player of the Year Award candidate. If the Raiders continue the pass-first approach while running back Josh Jacobs nurses a toe injury, Pittsburgh will end up 2-0 to start the season. Pick: Steelers -6.5

Atlanta Falcons at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 1 p.m., Fox

Line: Buccaneers -13.5 | Total: 52

Don’t expect Tom Brady to need a comeback from a 28-3 deficit this time. Four seasons have passed since his Super Bowl LI win, but if the Falcons (0-1) couldn’t stop the Eagles’ second-year quarterback Jalen Hurts from throwing for three touchdown passes last week, then they will surely struggle with the Bucs (1-0) and Brady, whose cast of receivers is arguably the best of his 22-year career. Oddsmakers expect this to be the largest mismatch of the weekend, and rightly so. Pick: Buccaneers -13.5

Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns, 1 p.m., CBS

Line: Browns -12.5 | Total: 48

The Browns (0-1) spent all off-season preparing for last week’s rematch against the Chiefs — and a run at an A.F.C. championship — only to fail to keep pace because of self-inflicted mistakes. Whatever frustrations Cleveland has from letting that game slip through its fingers should find an outlet in the Texans (1-0). Receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will again be out as he recovers from off-season knee surgery. But the Browns don’t need him to beat a Houston team with a roster considered one of the least talented in the league. Pick: Browns -12.5

Cincinnati Bengals at Chicago Bears, 1 p.m., Fox

Line: Bears -3 | Total: 45

In Week 1, the Bengals rookie receiver Ja’Marr Chase, who had a shaky preseason, reminded everyone that he can indeed fulfill his job description and catch a football. He collected five passes for 101 yards and a touchdown against the Vikings. The Bears’ secondary is arguably their weakest unit, and it allowed Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford to throw for 321 yards last week. If the Bears defense allows a similar performance, neither Andy Dalton nor Justin Fields at quarterback would be enough to compensate. Pick: Bengals +3

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