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NFL Preseason Week 2 Best Bets: Spread, Moneyline, and Over/Under Picks

Written by: Grant Mitchell
Published August 17, 2023
8 min read

The NFL marked its return to action last week with a full 16-game schedule of preseason action, and all 32 teams are back for more in NFL preseason Week 2. 

Rookies showed their best and worst, regular backups made a name for themselves, and new coaches showed early glimpses at what they had up their sleeve in their new location. 

Here are our best bets, including spreads, moneylines, and over/unders for every game in Week 2 of the 2023 NFL preseason.

*All odds from FanDuel sportsbook are current as of Thursday, August 17th. See other NFL Betting Sites for more betting opportunities. 

NFL Preseason Week 2 Picks Odds 2023

Cleveland Browns vs Philadelphia Eagles

Spread: Browns +3.5 (-105), Eagles -3.5 (-115)

Moneyline: Browns (+160), Eagles (-190)

Total: Over 37.5 (-110), Under 37.5 (-110)

The Browns are one of two teams (alongside the Jets) that have already played two games this preseason thanks to the Hall of Fame game. Through those two games, they are 1-1, but have shown quality on both sides of the ball (at least, as far as the preseason goes).

Rookie backup QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson has been one of the standout players of the preseason thus far. In two games, he’s racked up 183 passing yards and two touchdowns while completing over 80% of his passes. Fellow backup Kellen Mond has been alright, while the defense has held opponents to an average of 16.5 points. 

Clevleand’s starting unit has cause for concern since Denzel Ward and Myles Garrett both left Monday’s joint practice with the Eagles early due to medical reasons, but their defense is solid. The Eagles, meanwhile, got very little from Marcus Mariota and Ian Book and got run off the field in a loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Take the Browns +3.5 here.

Carolina Panthers vs New York Giants 

Spread: Panthers +3 (-110), Giants -3 (-110)

Moneyline: Panthers (+140), Giants (-165)

Total: Over 38.5 (-110), Under 38.5 (-110)

The Panthers’ preseason could not have gotten off to a worse start. They lost their Week 1 matchup against the Jets 27-0 as Bryce Young went 4/6 for 21 yards and backup Matt Corral averaged 5.7 yards per attempt and threw a pick. The running game also picked up just 52 yards on 15 carries.

We won’t blast the Panthers’ defense too heavily because depth isn’t their strength—but they certainly did not do a lot to slow down a Jets offense led by the dynamic duo of Zach Wilson and Tim Boyle (notice the sarcasm). They will find it fairly difficult against a well-coached Giants team that has Tyrod Taylor running the first team (or Daniel Jones if he suits up). 

That said, Carolina will find it easier to slow down the Giants than the Jets because of their comparative lack of depth. We’re looking at the under here because of the lack of standout offensive players and the inconsistencies both teams showed on both sides of the football.

Cincinnati Bengals vs Atlanta Falcons

Spread: Bengals +7 (-110), Falcons -7 (-110)

Moneyline: Bengals (+230), Falcons (-280)

Total: Over 38 (-110), Under 38 (-110)

The Bengals didn’t do much to slow down the Green Bay Packers in their 36-19 preseason Week 1 loss, but they did at least receive a solid performance from Trevor Siemian, who could be the opening-week starter with Joe Burrow’s calf injury. On the other side, Logan Woodside took every snap for the Falcons in their 19-3 win over the Miami Dolphins and went 14/23 for 146 yards.

The Falcons didn’t do a great job slowing down the Dolphins but forced three interceptions and five sacks. But as promising as that sounds, both sacks and turnovers are extremely difficult to find repeated success in, especially during the ever-unpredictable preseason.

Bengals defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo is quietly one of the best in the business. We expect him to lay into his defense and have them come out with a new life against Woodside and, if they play Demond Ridder and Taylor Heinicke. We’ll take the Bengals at +7 and can also see this game going under.

Jacksonville Jaguars vs Detroit Lions

Spread: Jaguars -4 (-110), Lions +4 (-110)

Moneyline: Jaguars (-180), Lions (+155)

Total: Over 38.5 (-110), Under 38.5 (-110)

Trevor Lawrence and company got some burn for the Jags in their loss to the Dallas Cowboys last weekend, while the Lions rested their starters. Detroit’s Nate Sudfled put together some nice drives but also tossed two interceptions, while Jacksonville’s Nathan Rourke came up with one of the all-time best preseason plays while splitting most of the snaps with C.J. Beathard.

The Jags ran the ball effectively with a multitude of backs. The Lions also used a ton of players in the backfield but were held to 97 combined yards on 33 attempts. Jacksonville has decent depth on the front line but was gashed for a 26-yard run by Deuce Vaughn, which won’t have pleased Doug Pederson.

These teams field two of the more competent offenses by preseason standards and don’t have tremendous depth in the secondary. The over was in fashion and Week 1, and we see this being a game that follows that trend. Take the over of 38.5 and watch for this game to soar over even that line.

Miami Dolphins vs Houston Texans

Spread: Dolphins +3.5 (-115), Texans -3.5 (-105)

Moneyline: Dolphins (+140), Texans (-165)

Total: Over 39.5 (-110), Under 39.5 (-110)

The Dolphins offense didn't look bad whatsoever despite only scoring three points against the Falcons. They completed 19 of 30 passes for 149 yards (and three interceptions) and ran the ball 26 times for 168 yards. The Texans, for comparison, beat the New England Patriots 20-9 while throwing 20/30 for 176 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception, and ran 30 times for 89 yards and a score.

Obviously, the key for the Dolphins will be limiting mistakes. Excluding the interceptions, the numbers posted by Skyler Thompson and Mike White were more impressive than those from Davis Mills, Case Keenum, and four attempts by C.J. Stroud. Their running game was also more effective thanks to Mike McDaniel’s offensive ingenuity, even in a vanilla preseason playbook.

While we believe that first-year head coach DeMeco Ryans will have his young Texans squad ready to play, especially on defense, we like the offensive upside of the Dolphins more. Take them on the spread for a conservative pick or on the moneyline for plus-money.

Buffalo Bills vs Pittsburgh Steelers

Spread: Bills +2.5 (-110), Steelers -2.5 (-110)

Moneyline: Bills (+115), Steelers (-135)

Total: Over 41 (-110), Under 41 (-110)

The Bills won their preseason opener against the Indianapolis Colts 23-19 thanks to a (for the preseason) incredibly strong passing attack, one that resulted in 266 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. On the other side, the Steelers played an uncommon card and sent four different quarterbacks onto the field to get reps. Kenny Pickett impressed and went 6/7 for 70 yards and a touchdown en route to a 27-17 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Both teams looked similar in terms of what they gave on both sides of the football. We also believe they have relatively similar philosophical identities, although the Bills are obviously helped by the presence of Josh Allen. Whether or not he plays could go a long way to influencing the winner of the matchup.

Even though both teams are stout defensively, the points total of 41 is the highest of the week. We believe this game will ultimately hit the under as the backup offenses show some regression and the defenses step up their level of play.

Chicago Bears vs Indianapolis Colts 

Spread: Bears +3.5 (-110), Colts -3.5 (-110)

Moneyline: Bears (+150), Colts (-175)

Total: Over 40 (-110), Under 40 (-110)

The Bears have caught a lot of flack for only allowing Justin Field to throw three passes—but he completed all three for 129 yards and two touchdowns. Granted, both of those touchdowns were on short passes that had lots of yards after the catch, but we aren’t going to blame the offensive coordinator for doing his job and scheming people open.

On the other side, Anthony Richardson did not look out of place but also threw one terrible interception and looked far from a finished product. That is to be expected for a player that had barely over one season of experience at the collegiate level.

We’re high on the Bear going into the regular season and like what we saw from them in their opening cameo. Their run defense still needs to improve, but the Colts don’t have many great runners without Jonathan Taylor and did not manage a run longer than nine yards last week.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs New York Jets

Spread: Buccaneers +2 (-110), Jets -2 (-110)

Moneyline: Buccaneers (+110), Jets (-130)

Total: Over 36.5 (-110), Under 36.5 (-110)

The Buccaneers may have found the answer to their ongoing quarterback competition in Week 1 of the preseason. Baker Mayfield (8/9, 63 yards, one touchdown) outshone Kyle Trask (6/10, 99 yards, one interception) as the running game struggled and the Bucs fell to the Steelers. The Jets, meanwhile, stomped the Panthers in the 27-0 shutout we mentioned earlier.

Zach Wilson is capable of playing Mayfield to a draw as both are about the same level of player. The key difference here is that the Jets racked up 141 yards on the ground in Week 1, largely thanks to 56 yards on 12 attempts from Israel Abanikanda, while the Bucs managed just 66 yards on 28 attempts.

The Jets’ defense is also much deeper than the Bucs’, especially on the defensive line. Tampa Bay still has quality players from its Super Bowl run but likely will not give any of them a ton of playing time, shifting the advantage firmly in the Jets’ favor. 

New England Patriots vs Green Bay Packers

Spread: Patriots +3 (-110), Packers -3 (-110)

Moneyline: Patriots (+135), Packers (-160)

Total: Over 37 (-110), Under 37 (-110)

The Patriots made headlines recently by signing running back Ezekiel Elliott to deputize incumbent Rhamondre Stevenson. Bill Belichick has a history of playing his starters in the preseason (even if most of them sat out last week) and won’t hesitate to toss Zeke into the fold if he deems him fit.

The Patriots didn’t show much on offense last week. Bailey Zappe completed 12 of 14 passes for 79 yards, but backup QB Malik Cunningham’s scamper into the end zone was their only touchdown of the game. On the other side, Sean Clifford impressed despite throwing two interceptions, while Jordan Love went 7/10 for 46 yards and a touchdown but missed a couple of easy throws.

This game is hard to judge because of how much unknown there is surrounding both offenses. Giving more series to Love will be good for his development, but he also didn’t do anything overly-impressive. Mac Jones taking snaps away from Zappe also isn’t guaranteed to boost New England’s offense in any way, so we’re going with the under here.

Tennessee Titans vs Minnesota Vikings

Spread: Titans -2.5 (-105), Vikings +2.5 (-115)

Moneyline: Titans (-130), Vikings (+110)

Total: Over 37 (-110), Under 37 (-110)

The Titans and Vikings have two of the weaker backup QB positions in the league. Minnesota’s Nick Mullens and Jaren Hall aren’t anything to write home about (although Mullens was decent against the Seattle Seahawks), while Malik Willis and Will Levis both showed a need for development in their 17-23 loss to the Bears.

The Titans were able to gain 126 yards on the ground on 25 carries but were gashed by numerous big plays. The Vikings don’t necessarily have the same capability without their starters but will look to take advantage of that when they meet this week.

As bad as the Titans were at defending the pass, they gave up the fewest rushing yards per game in the league last year, and the Vikings’ Week 1 running game was fairly ineffective. We can see the Titans using that to power their way to a close, hard-fought win.

Kansas City Chiefs vs Arizona Cardinals 

Spread: Chiefs -7.5 (-110), Cardinals +7.5 (-110)

Moneyline: Chiefs (-330), Cardinals (+270)

Total: Over 39.5 (-115), Under 39.5 (-105)

The Chiefs were victims of one of the worst beats of the week last weekend as they lost to the New Orleans Saints on a 31-yard field goal as time expired. Patrick Mahomes only threw two passes as the starters barely saw any playing time. 

The defending champs also received bad news earlier this week when wide receiver Justyn Ross was carted off with a leg injury after being out for two years (note: Ross returned to the field Wednesday but may be held out as a precaution). That puts them in a tough spot against a Cardinals team that, despite having the worst Super Bowl futures odds in the league, beat the Denver Broncos 18-17 behind a surprisingly efficient offensive outing.

We think the Cardinals will be horrible in the regular season, but virtually any team favored by more than a touchdown in the preseason is a must-fade. Considering we didn’t see much of KC’s starters last week and the Ross injury, plus the Cardinals’ success against a solid Denver defense, we’ll take them to cover.

Denver Broncos vs San Francisco 49ers

Spread: Broncos -3.5 (-115), 49ers +3.5 (-105)

Moneyline: Broncos (-180), 49ers (+155)

Total: Over 39 (-110), Under 39 (-110)

The Broncos played Russell Wilson and their starters more snaps than most other teams gave their first-stringers, showing Sean Payton’s commitment to revamping the culture and roster in Denver. Unfortunately, Russell Wilson started slow and didn’t look great despite going 7/13 for 93 yards and a touchdown. The Broncos’ defense was also unable to stop a bottom-tier Cardinals offense en route to an 18-17 loss.

Things weren’t much better for the Niners, who lost 34-7 to the Las Vegas Raiders in their preseason opener. Sam Darnold looked the most impressive of the backups, while Trey Lance went 10/15 for 112 yards and a touchdown but took four sacks. Lance has been a hot topic because of his need to see the field for his development, but also his waning importance in San Fran’s quarterback room.

Because neither one of these offenses were spectacular last week and we view both as more defensive-minded outfits, we are going with yet another under here. We think the Niners will cover, but that’s less of a certainty.

Las Vegas Raiders vs Los Angeles Rams

Spread: Raiders -3.5 (-110), Rams +3.5 (-110)

Moneyline: Raiders (-180), Rams (+155)

Total: Over 36.5 (-110), Under 36.5 (-110)

Rookie fourth-round pick Aidan O’Connell (15/18, 141 yards, one touchdown) was a welcome surprise for the Raiders. Even without Davante Adams (who is dealing with a minor leg injury), O’Connell showed a nice feel for the game and could position himself for playing time this season, especially given Jimmy Garoppolo’s injury history.

The Rams lost 34-17 to the Los Angeles Chargers but also saw a nice performance from another rookie QB, Georgia product Stetson Bennett. There were questions if Bennett could play in the NFL with a smaller frame and without all of the overwhelming talent around him, and he answered those questions by going 17/29 for 191 yards and a touchdown.

Many young quarterbacks taken in the first round are drafted off of physical tools or what they showed in limited appearances (a la Lance). That’s not the case with O’Connell or Bennett, both of whom have lots of college experience. Both teams are also thin on defense, which is why we like the over to hit in this one.

Dallas Cowboys vs Seattle Seahawks

Spread: Cowboys +7 (-110), Seahawks -7 (-110)

Moneyline: Cowboys (+220), Seahawks (-270)

Total: Over 38.5 (-110), Under 38.5 (-110)

We expected to see strong offense from the Cowboys last week, and that’s exactly what we got despite a 28-23 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Will Grier and Cooper Rush both looked sharp and combined to go 32/43 for 246 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception, while 5-foot-5 running back Deuce Vaughn led the backfield with eight carries for 50 yards and a touchdown.

In Seattle, former Broncos starter Drew Lock showed his worth in the league by going 17/24 for 191 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. The Seahawks’ ability to generate rushing yards with an enormous backfield committee during a 24-13 win over the Vikings was impressive given their lack of big names.

We think a lot of points could be scored here, but we’re more confident in the Cowboys’ ability to cover the seven points. As we mentioned earlier, that’s a huge line for the preseason no matter who is playing, and especially for a team as deep and talented as the Cowboys.

New Orleans Saints vs Los Angeles Chargers

Spread: Saints -3.5 (-105), Chargers +3.5 (-115)

Moneyline: Saints (-160), Chargers (+135)

Total: Over 37.5 (-110), Under 37.5 (-110)

The Chargers were able to score a ton of points thanks to a couple of huge runs, including a 40-yard scamper by Elijah Dotson. They finished with 214 yards and two touchdowns on 31 attempts against the Rams despite receiving very little from the quarterback position (Brandon Staley, please show us more than three passes of Max Duggan).

The Saints beat the Chiefs 26-24 on the last-second field goal we mentioned earlier but were able to hit that total thanks to a steady dose of competent quarterbacking. Derek Carr and Jameis Winston are arguably the best starter-backup combo in the league, and Jake Haener looked decent.

Both defenses are facsimiles of one another. We expect this game to be close, but despite the line crossing a critical number of three, we’ll take the Saints and bank on the Chargers struggling to replicate their dominance on the ground.

Baltimore Ravens vs Washington Commanders 

Spread: Ravens -3.5 (-105), Commanders +3.5 (-115)

Moneyline: Ravens (-165), Commanders (+140)

Total: Over 38.5 (-110), Under 38.5 (-110)

We’re not going to bury the lede here: The Ravens have now won 24 straight preseason games following their 20-19 win over the Eagles last week. It’s gotten to the point that we wouldn’t be surprised to see Lamar Jackson strap up his helmet late in the fourth quarter if Baltimore gets the ball down a score (only kidding… kind of).

Sam Howell and the Commanders offense looked decent in their win over the Browns despite the strange situation involving Ron Rivera and the offense asking him to tell offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy to take it easy on them. The defense struggled to slow down the Browns but adopted a “bend don’t break” mantra and held them to the 15 points.

The Ravens have great continuity in philosophy and scheme at the quarterback position with Tyler Huntley, Josh Johnson, and Anthony Brown, which is remarkable given how unique of a player Jackson is. They’ve also got a variety of playmakers in the backfield and out wide, and if you think we’re betting against them after they’ve won 24 in a row, you’re sadly mistaken.

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Grant Mitchell

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Grant is a sports and sports betting journalist who prides himself on delivering breaking news and insightful analyses of the industry. Grant graduated from Virginia Tech in 2021 and is feverishly pursuing his ambitions in the sports betting field.

In his free time, Grant can be found passionately watching sports, doing a workout, or searching for adventure with his friends.

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