NFL Week 1 Picks - Late Games

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NFL Week 1 Late Games

All times Eastern

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Los Angeles Chargers (-3, 43) at Cincinnati Bengals 4:05 pm (CBS) - The Chargers go from Phillip Rivers to Buffalo and Cleveland retread Tyrod Taylor at QB, which is a really questionable call. Making this game interesting is last year's Heisman Trophy winner, Joe Burrow - from the champion LSU Tigers - starting for the Bengals, who were just horrible last year. 2-14, the worst record in the league.

If the Bengals can field any kind of decent squad, they should be able to handle Taylor and the Chargers.

Coin Flip: Cincinnati

Prediction: Bengals 20 Chargers 17

Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints (-3 1/2, 49) 4:25 pm (Fox) - Having Tom Brady at QB for the Buccaneers will be quite the experience this year in the Sunshine State. One has to wonder if Brady can still do it at 43. Well, the Saints start 41-year-old Drew Brees, who seems to still have it.

The way this game shapes up, if the defenses aren't solid, one of these guys is going to end up on IR with tendonitis. Nobody thinks either can throw 40 passes in a game, but it may take that to win here.

Coin Flip: New Orleans

Prediction: Saints 38 Buccaneers 30

Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers (-7, 48) 4:25 pm (Fox) - San Francisco was a Super Bowl contestant last season, losing to Kansas City, 31-20, in an entertaining finale. The 49ers are likely not only the class of the NFC West, they're the team to beat in 2020.

Arizona's QB, Kyler Murray has a full season under his belt and should emerge as a start performer this season, but following a 5-10-1 record in 2019, the Cardinals still have a huge hill to climb.

San Fran took both engagements last season, including a 36-26 win at home.

Coin Flip: Arizona

Prediction: 49ers 34 Cardinals 17

Dallas Cowboys (-3, 51 1/2) at Los Angeles Rams 8:20 pm (NBC) - Mike McCarthy debuts as head coach of the Cowboys. While he may be a good fit, being up against the "wunderkind" of head coaches, Sean McMay will be a challenge right at the start. Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper form a solid offense and have experience on their side, but the Rams are chasing bigger goals, including the NFC West and the reigning NFC champion 49ers.

If LA isn't looking past this game - and they shouldn't be - chalk up a win for the Rams and more tweaking for McCarthy in Dallas.

Coin Flip: Los Angeles Rams

Prediction: LA Rams 26 Cowboys 20

Monday, September 14

Pittsburgh Steelers (-6, 47 1/2) at New York Giants 7:15 pm (ESPN) - First year head coach Joe Judge has his work cut out for him in the Big Apple. The Giants were just 4-10 last season and QB Daniel Jones, though he showed promise, is still unproven over the long haul. The Steelers have their own issues, including the status of 38-year-old Ben Roethlisberger.

While Big Ben can probably still chuck it 60 yards, his passes may lack some zip and accuracy. He may not have the finest receivers, but they're probably more than adequate against the Giants' secondary. New York's defense was the third worst in the NFL in 2019.

Coin Flip: New York Giants

Prediction: Steelers 35 Giants 20

Tennessee Titans (-2 1/2, 41) at Denver Broncos 10:10 pm (ESPN) - Denver had a so-so season in 2019, amassing a 7-9 record, while Tennessee emerged as a powerful force behind bruising running back Derrick Henry, steady QB Ryan Tannehill and a defense that improved as the season wore on, getting the Titans to the conference championship, where they lost to KC, 35-24.

Making the Titans a slight favorite in the mile high city might be just a bit of an understatement. If they come with the same fire and enthusiasm as they did last year, this one may be a blowout. The 16-0 Denver home win over the Titans last season was where the switch from Marcus Mariota to Tannehill took place, but it was too late to save that game for the Titans. After that loss, Tennessee went 7-3 the rest of the way.

Coin Flip: Denver

Prediction: Titans 31 Broncos 13

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