The Sportfolio Strategists’ NFL Week 2 X-Ray Report
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The Sportfolio Strategists’ NFL Week 2 X-Ray Report

Brett M
09-25-2020

Brett Matthew, Zach James, and Corey Larson, lead strategists for BetKarma’s NFL managed sportfolios.

Karma clan, we welcome you to check out our new weekly report that provides a deep-dive recap of several key games from the previous week, providing you with actionable insights that see through the final score and into the most substantive key takeaways, many of which will be incorporated into future sportfolio positioning. I think we can all appreciate that relying on ESPN storylines and highlights to frame your understanding of a team's performance or the evolution of a game is a disservice to your bankroll. Our x-ray will isolate critical factors that misalign with the media's broader narrative of a game, providing you with more opportunity to capitalize on mispricings in the market.

Be sure to also subscribe to get access to our NFL Core and Aggressive sportfolios. Core was +1% and Aggressive was +3% in Week 2, bringing our season-to-date returns to 2% and 5.5%, respectively.

 

NFL WEEK 2 X-RAY


Washington/Cardinals:

Rapid Reactions: Cardinals improve to 2-0, Murray stars in win
What we learned: Cards continue aggressive play calling. Neither teams' secondary is any good, but only Murray could really take advantage. Haskins didn't make single impressive play. Cards' porous run D only thing that gave Skins a chance. Murray's quickness defeated (for the most part) the quickness of Skins' DL. Several 3rd down passes short of sticks by Haskins, who is a bottom 3 QB (maybe the worst). Haskins lost control of body numerous occasions, resulting in sacks. Can't process D. Murray has a beautiful deep ball, and has receivers who can position themselves accordingly (but does continue to force it on occasion, which will hurt him in a key situations this season). Cards D didn't play well, but Skins' O play-calling and personnel just that inept.
*Bad field position to start for Skins, dropped 3rd down pass by Thomas (which he did on at least 2 additional occasions). Punt. Mid-field start for Cards. Murray great run for TD, called bk by penalty; 3rd down pass from redzone to Hopkins for TD (wide open...?). Cards 7-0.
*Haskins no mobility, sack, then almost throws pick. Punt. 
*Baaad, lazy pass by Murray, pure hubris, INT. Skins start inside redzone. Nonetheless, Haskins fumbles, Cards recover. 
*Cards 3 n out, but Skins fumble punt return; Cards ball again, great field position. Big 3rd down pickup, results in 15y Murray run for TD. Super shifty. 14-0.
*Skins 3 n out, Murrya big pass to Isabella, inside redzone. Murray agility able to mitigate Skins' tough DL, but pressure results in incomplete passes. 17-0.
*On kick returns, Skins' Sims repeatedly takes ball out, and repeatedly doesn't even make it to the 20, giving Skins' bad field position. 
*Cards up 20-0, go for it on 4 n 1 from own 25, creative play call, converts. 
*Can't express how many poor and missed throws by Haskins. Some big open holes/running lanes allows for a decent drive, but stalls. 20-3. 
*Chase Edmunds > Kenyan Drake
*Murray's cuts and jukes are video-game-like, and Skins don't have speed to slow him down. 
*McLaurin unsurprisingly the only real weapon. Haskins gets stat benefit for TD, but quick slants to McLaurin is all McLaurin. 
*If Wash DL can't get sufficient pressure on Murray to disrupt his game, who can?

 

Rams/Eagles:

McVay's Rams look tougher than many expected after 2-0 start - Benzie  Record Patriot
What we learned: Goff and Rams O playcalling is much more creative, capitalizing on Goff's strengths and mitigating weakness. Goff play-action resulted in a positive or big play almost every time, and Rams used it a SH*T TON. Eagles D looks below average, Slay a no-show. Kupp/Woods/TEs feasted when needed. Wentz looked average, rushed, defaulted to drop offs. No big Eagles plays, didn't even try.
*Sanders fumbles on 1st position, giving Rams short field; big pass to Kupp centerfield into redzone, TD Rams, 7-0 quick
*Good drive by Eagles, stalls, turns into FG. 7-3. Great tackling by Rams D.
*Rams, so much play-action and rolling Goff out. Mitigates Goff's weaknesses. Creative play-calling by Rams. Another strong drive, 14-3 Rams.
*Wentz looks uncomfortable in pocket, defaults to dump off, not even accurate. 3 n out.
*Kupp is incredibly key to the fluidity of the Rams offense. Goff/Kupp chemistry is elite. Rams quick drop backs, rolling Godd out, continued play-action, rather effortless drive right down field. 80y drive, TD. 21-3 Rams.
*Eagles TD drive facilitated by numerous dump off passes. Wentz continue to have time, but looks mentally rushed, forces quick read. 21-9 (missed 2pt try)
*More Goff roll outs work tremendously well; 15y gains. When Goff takes traditional dropback and is rushed, is worthless. Bk to Bk pressures results in Rams punt. McVay knows he has to be creative to get most out of Goff. 
*Eagles WR/TEs just cant get open; Wentz forces into tight windows, mostly deflected. Wentz also threw some miserable passes, not even under duress. Punt.
*Rams fumble punt, Eagles inside redzone. TD. 21-16.
*Goff 13/14 for 160y 2TDs at HT.
*After Rams 3 n out, Eagles drive into Rams territory, threaten to take lead, move inside redzone, INT inside endzone. Still 21-16
*Rams go for 4th n 1 from own 25...ballsy. Goff sneak gets it. More rollout passes to Kupp Rams across 50. 
*Rams run game weak, but doesn't matter much. Is enough to setup pass. Goff play-action setup works almost every time. Goff traditonal dropback, rushed, again...worthless. Drive stalls, Rams FG, 24-16.
*Another strong drive by Eagles, into redzone, stalls, Eagles FG, 24-19, 12 min left in 4Q. 
*Another play-action enabled drive by Rams, effortlessly down field, TD. 31-19.

 

Jags/Titans:
Titans takeaways, Week 2: What Ryan Tannehill did is what you want from  your QB – The Athletic

What we learned: It’s time to upgrade the reality of this Jags team. 2 division games against 2 at least supposedly decent or good defenses and they put up 27 and 30 points. Credit Jay Gruden, a returning O-line, and Gardner Minshew and WEAPONS. Also, this game may in part be a product of a worse than ly Titan's Defense. Jags D is still in trouble all-season, but they can make big plays, unlike a team like the Jets. Tannehill is also still wildly underrated in this scheme and so I put him as my top QB in this division. Yes, I said it.
* 1st play for Titans, play action and 60 yd pass play to wide open Jonnu Smith, great play call.
* Great TD catch by Jonnu Smith, right throw.
* Minshew first play also play action, throws into triple coverage, should have been picked off.
* Minshew being able to move around the pocket helps him, picks up 4th and 3 fist down
* Minshew throws ball too high - bad pass, tipped and picked.
* Corey Davis TD, when healthy, underrated target for Tannehill, nice catch/separation in endzone. 22 straight catches and all went for 1st downs or TD’s.
* Big throw and catch by Chark, strong WR, similar to Allen Robinson.
* Great throw/catch over middle for 20 yd TD pass to Tyler Eifert from Minshew
* Jags selling out to stop run.
* Minshew dumb 15yd sack taken instead of throwing away sooner
* Robinson and run o-line was solid, an o-line that has returns its starters from ly
* Great TD throw by Tannehill as getting hit. Missed ext point again by Gostowski.
* Huge 50 yd run by Robinson. TD on drive, missed EX Point too.
* Minshew great throw on fade for TD ties game 7 minutes left
* Titans bailed out on 3rd down by PI call. Leads to FG with 1:30 left
* Minshew tipped at line, picked, game.

 

49ers/Jets:

NFL Week 2: 49ers blast Jets 31-13, but lose Garoppolo, Bosa, Mostert |  TribLIVE.com
What we learned: Never have a one sided handicap. Jets gifted this game to maybe the most banged up team in the NFL, at home. Just by playing terrible, mistake-filled, sloppy football. (Glaring) Mistake free, this should have been14-9 going into the final drive for the Jets.
* 1st play 80 yard run pitch for TD by Mostert
* Perfect punt by Jets, slowly rolls into endzone for touch back, no one around to stop it.
* Another long pitch TD to Mostert, but called back on holding.
* **Jets did drive ball twice in first have into redzone
* 4th down and 1 run up middle by Jets, stuffed easily.
* Roughing passer on Jimmy G gives 1st down instead of punt and results in TD for 49ers.
* If Jets just play competent football, this game is 7-6 going into half time.
* 3rd and 31, with backup QB, Mickinnon runs up middle and gets 50 yards, results in 49er FG
* 24-3, should still be 7-6
* Jets get pick of tip from Mullens and a FG.
* Another pitch to outside for running TD 15 yards out
* Should be 14-9 going into last 3 minutes.
* Jets score worthless TD to blow the under.
* Darnold was okay in this game, just no weapons and getting pressured, and bad play calls. (Tannehill anyone?)

 

Bucs/Panthers:

Tom Brady, Buccaneers show signs of improvement in Week 2 win | NBC Sports
What we learned: Bucs and Panthers are still finding rhythm with underrated QB’s and tons of weapons, yes, even despite injuries. Fournette can help salt games away late and both defenses are on opposite sides of power rankings. 
* Errant throw while Panthers driving picked off on screen pass to CMC.
* Bucs, dropped passes killing them.
* Pressure by Bucs and bad choice by Bridgewater, fumble. Brady answers on next play TD
* Bucs a lot of pressure all game.
* Brady looks in control and sharp, putting ball only where his WR’s can get it.
* Ronald Jones fumbles the hand off though really Brady’s fault too.
* Panthers call a fake punt on Bucs 35 yard line instead of going for it on 4th and 3, the dumbest play-call in awhile.
* Bucs up 21-0
* Panthers fumble, then Brady overthrows Gronk on next play for interception, just not in sync on the depth of route.
* Brady gets another long ball PI call, knows how to place it.
* Brady long pass dropped by 5th string WR. 
* Big throw to Robbie Anderson down sideline, then next play Teddy sacked. 
* Behind pass to DJ Moore picked off by Bucs
* Fournette late in game, big runs, Panther D tired.
* McCoy dropped TD pass, bucs settle for FG
* 24-17 after onside kick by Panthers then Fourneette busts one for TD on next play

 

Colts/Vikings:

Did anyone stand out for the Minnesota Vikings in Week 2?
What we learned: Colts still get a lot of pressure, Vikings cannot. Cousins can be horrible, but so too can Rivers. Vikings offense will function through Dalvin Cook, and their defense may not have talent to be in the top 20. Hooker for Colts and Barr for Vikings are out for the year, big losses for both, but Colts Defense is still top 10.
* Roughing Passer on 3rd and 10 extends drive for Vikings on 1st drive, which led to FG
* Colts 1st drive, ton of Taylor just running it right down Viking’s throat
* Rivers late throwing ball to TE Cox and so gets bounced up and intercepted on Vikings 10yd line
* 3rd and 7 on own end Vikings run it. No faith in this passing game.
* Colts tons of pressure, dominating up front
* TY drops wide open TD - again
* Score should be 17-0 Colts of 6 minute mark in 2Q
* Minnesota offense reminds me of Christian Ponder days
* Great pick by Colts on deep toss up to Thielen
* 2H 
* Cousins picked off a tipped ball. Definitely a bad Cousins staple road performance
* Dalvin Cook’s running was the lone bright spot for Vikings.

 

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