Four years ago, we began honoring radio legend Steve Czaban — who was surprisingly booted from the SB Nation Radio morning lineup in 2016, despite having perhaps the most engaging program in the radio marketplace — with a “You Are Looking Live!” preview of each NFL weekend.
The bit was so well-received, so roundly praised by media pundits (including a few SB Nation writers) and Czabe’s legion of fans alike, that we decided to make You Are Looking Live! a permanent Friday staple of the BATSBY Sports Network programming.
As such, it makes perfect sense to include Brent Musburger and Joey Porter into the presentation, via YouTube:
DETROIT (0-1) @ GREEN BAY (1-0)
TIME: 1 p.m. EST
LINE: Packers (-6 1/2) … Over/Under: 49.5
REFEREE: Clete Blakeman
TV: Chris Myers, Brock Huard, Greg Jennings, Jennifer Hale (FOX)
LAMBEAU LEAPS APLENTY: For Week 2, BATSBY Sports didn’t require extra motivation to finagle a top-five ranking for Aaron Rodgers (364 yards passing, 4 TDs last week).
****The Lions ranked in the bottom seven last year with opposing quarterbacks, in terms of touchdown passes, completions and passing yards surrendered.
****Charting his previous eight outings versus Detroit, Rodgers boasts elite-level averages of 298 yards passing and 2.9 TDs.
ATLANTA (0-1) @ DALLAS (1-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Cowboys (-4 1/2) … Over/Under: 54
REFEREE: Brad Rogers
TV ANNOUNCERS: Kevin Burkhardt, Darryl Johnston, Pam Oliver (FOX)
FANTASY GOODNESS: This seems like the ideal week to ride Dak Prescott in any type of scoring league.
****Last week against the Rams, the Cowboys’ four main playmakers (Ezekiel Elliott, Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, CeeDee Lamb) caught 21 of 29 targeted balls.
****The Falcons (Sunday’s foe) surrendered the 10th-most touchdown passes last season; and last week, Atlanta was one of only two NFL defenses to give up four TD passes.
****At home last season, Prescott enjoyed an eight-game average of 303 yards passing and 2.5 touchdowns.
On the flip side … in two career meetings, Prescott has never tossed a scoring pass against the Falcons.
WEEK 2 PREP WORK
PASSING FANCY: QB-starter rankings for Week 2
RUN TO DAYLIGHT: Week 2’s listing of top 60 PPR tailbacks
CATCHES AND TARGETS: Top 70 PPR wideouts for Week 2
LARGE AND IN CHARGE: Week 2’s top 30 PPR tight ends
GET TO WORK: 7 reasonable buy-low options to acquire before Week 2
FREE AGENCY: Top 30 waiver-wire pickups for NFL Week 2
IMPRESS YOUR FRIENDS: 15 super-fun facts to ponder for NFL Week 2
GOOD BEATS: The weekend’s best betting bets for NFL, College Football
‘YOU ARE LOOKING LIVE’: The gold-standard preview of NFL Week 2
DENVER (0-1) @ PITTSBURGH (1-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Steelers (-7) … Over/Under: 40.5
REFEREE: Adrian Hill
TV ANNOUNCERS: Greg Gumbel, Rich Gannon, Jay Feely (CBS)
FUN FACT: The Steelers have conducted five straight home openers in Week 2, including last year’s real-time torture of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger incurring a major elbow injury (vs. Seattle).
Now for the good news: For those Week 2 home openers from 2015-18, Big Ben posted amazingly consistent averages of 323 yards passing and three touchdowns.
N.Y. GIANTS (0-1) @ CHICAGO (1-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Bears (-5 1/2) … Over/Under: 42
REFEREE: Bill Vinovich
TV ANNOUNCERS: Ian Eagle, Charles Davis, Evan Washburn (CBS)
GUARANTEED BOUNCE-BACK: Giants tailback Saquon Barkley has taken a few snarky hits on social media this week (like this Tweet), after Monday’s inglorious effort of 15 carries for six yards (0.4 yards per rush).
But we’re not worried about any prolonged slumps involving Barkley.
Counting the previous 29 games of his brief, but decorated career, Barkley had produced eight outings of less than 50 yards rushing. For the follow-up performances, however, the Penn State product notched 100 total yards and/or one touchdown seven times.
What’s more, citing last year’s stats, the Bears ranked in the bottom 11 with rushing touchdowns, targets, receiving yards and receptions allowed to opposing running backs.
NOTHING TO SEE HERE, FOLKS: It’s a good thing wideout Allen Robinson has cleared the air with Bears management, after earlier talks for a major contract extension reportedly fell flat.
The eminently bankable Robinson has collected eight-plus targets in seven straight games, dating back to last year’s 131-yard, one-TD effort against the Giants (Sunday’s opponent).
What’s more, citing his last eight home outings with Chicago, Robinson registered nine-plus targets or scored at least one touchdown six times.
JACKSONVILLE (1-0) @ TENNESSEE (1-0)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Titans (-7 1/2) … Over/Under: 44
REFEREE: Clay Martin
TV ANNOUNCERS: Andrew Catalon, James Lofton, A.J. Ross (CBS)
FUN FACT: There are three certainties in life: Death, taxes … and Derrick Henry torching the Jaguars defense, whenever humanly possible.
Counting his previous six meetings with Jacksonville, Henry owns otherworldly averages of 121 total yards and 1.5 touchdowns.
Here’s another thing to celebrate: Henry has accounted for 99 total yards and/or one TD seven times in his last eight games.
MINNESOTA (0-1) @ INDIANAPOLIS (0-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Colts (-3) … Over/Under: 48.5
REFEREE: Alex Kemp
TV ANNOUNCERS: Tim Brando, Robert Smith, Megan Olivi (FOX)
START HILTON, NO MATTER WHAT: T.Y. Hilton’s annual destruction of the Texans defense has been well-chronicled through the years.
You know what doesn’t garner regular mention, when discussing the Indy wideout’s track record?
Check this out:
Charting his last 11 home outings against non-conference foes, dating back to 2014, the remarkably consistent Hilton holds strong averages of six catches, 100 yards and 0.7 touchdowns; and that includes last year’s clunker of 26 yards versus the Panthers.
SAN FRANCISCO (0-1) @ N.Y. JETS (0-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Jets (+7) … Over/Under: 41.5
REFEREE: Ron Torbert
TV: Brandon Gaudin, Jonathan Vilma, Shannon Spake (FOX)
LESS-THAN-FUN FACTOID: Here’s a somewhat troubling trend worth tracking:
Citing his last eight games played in the Eastern Time Zone, including the Super Bowl in February (Miami), Niners tight end George Kittle has not once found the end zone.
BUFFALO (1-0) @ MIAMI (0-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Dolphins (+5 1/2) … Over/Under: 41
REFEREE: Jerome Boger
TV ANNOUNCERS: Spero Dedes, Adam Archuleta (CBS)
FUN FACT: The Dolphins surrendered the most passing touchdowns last year (39), an incredible feat when factoring in Miami’s 11th-place finish in fewest cumulative completions allowed to opposing quarterbacks.
Which brings us to this …
Josh Allen might have missed two wide-open playmakers in the end zone last week (Dawson Knox, John Brown on separate possessions), but he still came through with strong numbers against the Jets — 33 of 46 for 312 yards and three total touchdowns.
Does this make him a supreme candidate for Sunday versus Miami? You betcha!
Counting his last three meetings with the Dolphins, Allen has absurdly averaged 288 total yards and 3.7 touchdowns.
CAROLINA (0-1) @ TAMPA BAY (0-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Buccaneers (-8 1/2) … Over/Under: 47.5
REFEREE: John Hussey
TV ANALYSTS: Adam Amin, Mark Schlereth, Lindsay Czarniak (FOX)
NO. 1, WITH A BULLET: BATSBY Sports has Christian McCaffrey ranked as fantasy’s No. 1 tailback this week, out of loyalty to two glowing nuggets:
a) The Panthers star (2,392 total yards, 19 TDs last year) holds robust averages of 107 total yards and 1.3 touchdowns in his last four meetings with the Buccaneers.
b) McCaffrey (134 total yards, 2 TDs last week) has reached the elite-level threshold of 100 total yards and/or one TD in 15 straight outings.
Of course, it’s also worth noting: McCaffrey’s streak for the above factoid began after his sluggish Week 2 outings versus Tampa Bay last season (53 total yards, zero scores).
L.A. RAMS (1-0) @ PHILADELPHIA (0-1)
TIME: 1 p.m.
LINE: Eagles (-1) … Over/Under: 45.5
REFEREE: Brad Allen
TV ANNOUNCERS: Kevin Kugler, Chris Spielman, Laura Okmin (FOX)
KUPP RUNNETH OVER? We’re a little nervous about Cooper Kupp’s top-10 ranking among wide receivers, and it has little to do with Robert Woods’ 105-yard effort from last week.
****Kupp has quickly developed a reputation for being streaky with touchdowns. When things are good, it’s poetry in fantasy motion; and when it’s bad … things sort of snowball from there.
****The Eagles (Sunday opponent) were a bottom-6 pass defense last season, citing the crucial categories of targets, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns allowed to opposing wideouts.
****The last time he entered Pennsylvania state lines (November 2019), Kupp left Heinz Field with zero catches and four targets.
WASHINGTON (1-0) @ ARIZONA (1-0)
TIME: 4:05 p.m. EST
LINE: Cardinals (-7) … Over/Under: 46.5
REFEREE: Land Clark
TV ANNOUNCERS: Dick Stockton, Brady Quinn, Sara Walsh (FOX)
FUN FACT: Cardinals fans are undoubtedly pumped about DeAndre Hopkins’ home debut with the new club, on the heels of last week’s 14-catch, 151-yard gem (road upset of the 49ers).
But there should also be tangible enthusiasm reserved for another new-ish acquisition, tailback Kenyan Drake.
Of his four NFL outings at University of Phoenix Stadium, Drake holds supreme averages of 107 total yards and 1.3 touchdowns.
And don’t forget about Drake’s thrilling kick-return touchdown in the 2016 College Football Playoff title game at the same stadium, the perfect capper to 218 all-purpose yards in Alabama’s 45-40 victory over Clemson.
KANSAS CITY (1-0) @ L.A. CHARGERS (1-0)
TIME: 4:25 p.m. EST
LINE: Chargers (+8 1/2) … Over/Under: 47.5
REFEREE: Carl Cheffers
TV ANNOUNCERS: Jim Nantz, Tony Romo, Tracy Wolfson (CBS)
LINGERING DOUBTS AT THE TOP: There’s a good news/meh news proposition involving Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce this week:
Charting his last 11 outings (including the postseason), Kelce has scored eight touchdowns and tallied a terrific catch-to-target rate of 82 percent.
On the down swing, citing his last seven games against the Chargers, Kelce collected three or fewer receptions four different times.
In other words, Kelce (preseason No. 1 tight end) hardly represents a lock for Sunday’s top five.
BALTIMORE (1-0) @ HOUSTON (0-1)
TIME: 4:25 p.m.
LINE: Texans (+7) … Over/Under: 50
REFEREE: Tony Corrente
TV ANNOUNCERS: Kevin Harlan, Trent Green, Melanie Collins (CBS)
DOUBLE YOUR PLEASURE: Ravens tailback Mark Ingram racked up five outings of multiple touchdowns last season, including his 85-yard, two-TD effort against the overmatched Texans (41-7 final).
Which puts us in the mood for the following nugget:
Of his 16 games of multiple scores, dating back to 2014, Ingram registered 20 or more carries only four times.
NEW ENGLAND (1-0) @ SEATTLE (1-0)
TIME: 8:20 p.m. EST
LINE: Seahawks (-4) … Over/Under: 44.5
REFEREE: Craig Wrolstad
TV: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michelle Tafoya (NBC)
THE TONIGHT SHOW: The Patriots, coming off a No. 6 ranking in rushing yards allowed (2019), have been particularly stingy with opposing running backs lately, allowing only Joe Mixon and Derrick Henry to break the 100-yard rushing mark after last year’s bye.
However, there’s hope for a third rusher joining that semi-exclusive club.
Charting his last eight games against non-NFC West opponents, Seahawks RB Chris Carson (two-year average: 1,405 total yards, 9 TDs) owns rock-solid averages of 103 total yards and 0.7 touchdowns.
NEW ORLEANS (1-0) @ LAS VEGAS (1-0)
TIME: 8:15 p.m. EST
LINE: Raiders (+5 1/2) … Over/Under: 49
REFEREE: Shawn Hochuli
TV: Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Louis Riddick, Lisa Salters (ESPN)
BETTING HUNCH #1: In the Drew Brees/New Orleans era, dating back to 2006, the five Saints-Raiders meetings have produced an average combined score of 54 points — or five points higher than this week’s over-under tally (source: OddsShark.com).
BETTING HUNCH #2: If Michael Thomas (high-ankle injury) doesn’t suit up on Monday night, it’s hard to envision the Saints covering the 5 1/2-point spread as favorites, even though brand-spanking-new Allegiant Stadium will be devoid of ticket-buying fans.
We still love both clubs eclipsing the over, though.