Fearless Rick's Football Picks - Preseason Week 2 - late games

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WEEK 2 NFL Preseason

All times Eastern

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Saturday, August 19 8:00 pm New England Patriots at Houston Texans (-1, 40) - Any time the Patriots play anywhere outside of Foxboro, they've got targets on their backs, so the Texans will be geared up to register a win against the Pats, who flummoxed around last week in a surprising 31-24 loss to Jacksonville.

Houston has had since Wednesday last to prepare for this, and it may be more than just another preseason game to them. After losing at Carolina last week (27-17), they may be giving rookie Deshaun Watson more latitude in play-calling. Could be a good thing.

Coin Flip: New England

Prediction: Texans 28 Patriots 26

10:00 pm Chicago Bears at Arizona Cardinals (-3 1/2, 41) - The Bears lost at Denver, 24-17 last week, but they're hoping Mitchell Trubisky is the real deal at quarterback after going 10-for-25 for 166 yards and a TD.

Arizona put the kibosh on the Raiders last week and are rewarded with another home game. Tough scheduling for the upstart Bears, who may make strides this season, but they're a long way from contending.

Coin Flip: Arizona

Prediction: Cardinals 33 Bears 16

10:00 pm Denver Broncos at San Francisco 49ers (-2 1/2, 40) - There's a quarterback battle brewing in San Francisco between Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley, so both should get plenty of playing time. Barkley looked the better of the two in last week's surprise, 27-17, win at Kansas City, but Hoyer is likely to start.

Denver's starter, Trevor Siemian, saw limited action last week as the Broncos topped the Bears, 24-17, and will get an extended look in week two. While he's not exactly a pro-bowler, Siemian has some experience and should give a good showing as the Broncos improve to 2-0 preseason.

Coin Flip: Denver

Prediction: Broncos 23 49ers 20

10:00 pm LA Rams at Oakland Raiders (-3, 39 1/2) - Derek Carr and Marshawn Lynch didn't play in Oakland's 20-10 loss at Arizona in week one, but they will likely see extended action here, and that spells trouble for the visiting Rams.

LA should be feeling good about themselves, having knocked off Dallas, 13-10, last week at home and receiving the services of Samy Watkins, who was traded from the Bills to the Rams last Friday. Watkins is expected to play, though he won't be fully up to speed on the Rams' playbook, so maybe just a cameo this week.

Coin Flip: LA Rams

Prediction: Raiders 24 Rams 17

Sunday, August 20

4:00 pm Atlanta Falcons (-3, 39 1/2) at Pittsburgh Steelers - This is the only line favoring a road team this week, for what reason is anybody's guess, ranging from Le' veon Bell not being ready to Ben Roethliserger chirping about retirement. There's a chance neither of those Steelers may play, though they might. We'll side with the coin in this undecided game. Besides, Pittsburgh beat the Giants, last week, 20-12, while the Falcons were not exactly Super Bowl heroes in their 23-20 loss at Miami.

Coin Flip: Atlanta

Prediction: Falcons 24 Steelers 14

8:00 pm New Orleans Saints at LA Chargers (-3, 43) - Even the move from San Diego to Los Angeles didn't help the Chargers, as they were bludgeoned by Seattle, 48-17, in their first game at their new digs.

They will probably fare a little better against the somewhat defenseless Saints, who had the dubious distinction of losing to Cleveland in their preseason opener, in New Orleans, no less, 20-10. This should be and could be the highest-scoring game of the NFL weekend.

Coin Flip: LA Chargers

Prediction: Chargers 38 Saints 30

Monday, August 21

8:00 pm New York Giants at Cleveland Browns (-1, 39 1/2) - Shockingly, Cleveland is coming off a win (20-10, at New Orleans), while the Giants hit the road after a 20-12 home loss to the Steelers.

While it's safe to say that this game really doesn't matter, it may mean something to the players since it is a nationally-televised event on ESPN, and Giants' QB Eli Manning usually shines under the bright spotlight. The Browns are still a decade away from the playoffs, so there's that, too.

Coin Flip: Cleveland

Prediction: NY Giants 21 Browns 13

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