Prime-time Parlay: FPI predictions for the biggest games of NFL Week 2
Developing story: Parlays are hard to win.
The inaugural edition of Prime-time Parlay did not hit, as FPI’s straight-up prediction of a New York Giants win over the Jacksonville Jaguars was not successful, nor was the pick of the Detroit Lions over the New York Jets (yes, this was wildly incorrect).
But we forge ahead.
As a reminder, Prime-time Parlay is all about the best games — Thursday, Sunday and Monday’s prime-time games, and the top 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Sunday matchups. Straight up picks — but you gotta hit all five. And then we calculate how much you’d earn for the parlay, utilizing Westgate’s money lines.
Via ESPN’s Football Power Index, Prime-time Parlay tells you the analytics-based predictions for the meetings of greatest national import, offering the smart picks for the games you’ll be watching. (All NFL point spreads and money lines can be found here).
Total payout for Week 2 Prime-time Parlay (selecting all FPI-projected winners in five games): $1445.66 on $100 wager
Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals (Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET, NFL Network)
Money line: Ravens -115
FPI projection: Ravens win by 2.1 points
Though the Ravens played the NFL’s version of a junior varsity squad — sorry, Nathan Peterman, it’s true — in Week 1, Baltimore was so dominant that FPI bumped Baltimore all the way up to fourth in its rankings. Fourth! Vegas isn’t far behind, since it made Baltimore road favorites. — Seth Walder
Philadelphia Eagles at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Sunday, 1 p.m. ET, FOX)
Money line: Eagles -180
FPI projection: Eagles win by 3.5 points
Nick Foles reminded us last week why he wasn’t a starting quarterback until Carson Wentz was injured. We ought to keep the same thing in mind about Ryan Fitzpatrick despite his Week 1 dominance. — Seth Walder
New England Patriots at Jacksonville Jaguars (Sunday, 4:25 p.m., CBS)
Money line: Jaguars +105
FPI projection: Jaguars win by 0.2 points
If you’re going to face Tom Brady, it’s best to do it with the defense that kept opposing quarterbacks to the lowest Total QBR in the league last season. That would be the Jaguars defense, which allowed a big day to Odell Beckham Jr. in Week 1 but overall had a strong defensive showing. — Seth Walder
New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys (Sunday, 8:20 p.m. ET, NBC)
Money line: Cowboys -150
FPI projection: Cowboys win by 8.0 points
Dak Prescott had the third-highest off-target rate in Week 1, behind only Tyrod Taylor and Nathan Peterman. But he has been around league average each of the past two seasons, so it’s reasonable to expect him to bounce back. FPI is high on Prescott, part of the reason it likes Dallas more than Vegas. — Seth Walder
Seattle Seahawks at Chicago Bears (Monday, 8:15 p.m. ET, NFL Network)
Money line: Bears -180
FPI projection: Bears win by 2.9 points
No team blitzed less than the Bears (7 percent of dropbacks) in Week 1. Why should they? With Khalil Mack and Leonard Floyd they can generate pressure with only four rushers. — Seth Walder
Final Parlay: Ravens, Eagles, Jaguars, Cowboys, Bears
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