NFL Spreads Week 3: Teams That Will Overcome the Odds

Maxwell OgdenCorrespondent IIISeptember 22, 2013

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15:  EJ Manuel #3 of the Buffalo Bills scrambles against the Carolina Panthers at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 15, 2013 in Orchard Park, New York.Buffalo won 24-23.  (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Rick Stewart/Getty Images

The 2013 NFL regular season has featured its fair share of stunning upsets and unforeseen blowouts. As a result, eight undefeated teams remain after two weeks, and the term "unpredictable" has adopted a new meaning.

The question is, which teams will defy the odds in Week 3?


Buffalo Bills

Sep 15, 2013; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills wide receiver Steve Johnson (13) celebrates after catching the winning touchdown pass with seconds left from quarterback EJ Manuel (3) against the Carolina Panthers at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Mandatory Cred
Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Opponent: New York Jets

Record: 1-1

Betting Line: Jets (-3) via Bovada

The Buffalo Bills enter Week 3 with a 1-1 record. The Bills lost 23-21 to the New England Patriots during Week 1 but responded with a 24-23 nail-biting victory over the Carolina Panthers after EJ Manuel found Stevie Johnson for a touchdown with two seconds remaining in regulation.

Now, Buffalo will look to defeat the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium for the first time since 2009.

The key in this meeting will be the battle between rookie quarterbacks Manuel and Geno Smith. Both have experienced a close loss and a close win, and now each will have the opportunity to take his team above .500.

Expect the Bills to overcome the odds and do just that.

After throwing for 150 yards during Week 1, Manuel torched the Panthers for 296 yards on 27-of-39 passing. Complementing Manuel was the running back tandem of Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller, who have combined for 241 rushing yards through two games.

New York has the defense to compete, but offensively, Buffalo has a notable advantage. With Mario Williams coming to life on defense, picking up 4.5 sacks during Week 2, the Bills are a genuine team to watch in the AFC.

This will be a battle, but Buffalo will beat the odds.


Carolina Panthers

ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers throws a touchdown pass during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 15, 2013 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Imag
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

Opponent: New York Giants

Record: 0-2

Betting Line: Giants (-1.5) via Bovada

The Carolina Panthers are one of the best teams in the NFL when it comes to the second half of the regular season. Under Cam Newton, the Panthers are 9-3 during the final six games of the past two regular seasons.

Unfortunately, Carolina is also 4-18 during the opening 11 weeks under Newton.

The New York Giants enter Week 3 of the 2013 NFL regular season as the favorite to defeat the Panthers. Eli Manning is still under center and the Giants receiving corps is explosive, but the defense has been nothing short of weak and the running game doesn't exist.

Going up against an elite front seven, the Giants will be in trouble.

The pressure is on Newton in Week 3, as he was underwhelming and conservative against the Seattle Seahawks during Week 1. One week later, he was strong against the Bills but still failed to produce at the elite level expected of him.

Against a Giants team that is averaging just 36.5 rushing yards per game, Newton will run a high volume of plays and lead Carolina to a much-needed victory.


San Diego Chargers

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 15: Quarterback Philip Rivers #17 of the San Diego Chargers throws a pass in the third quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on September 15, 2013 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The San Diego Charg
Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Opponent: Tennessee Titans

Record: 1-1

Betting Line: Titans (-3) via Bovada

Despite splitting games and ending up at 1-1, the San Diego Chargers have been turning heads for two weeks. Philip Rivers led the Chargers to a 31-28 near-upset of the Houston Texans and a 33-30 road win over the Philadelphia Eagles.

Up next is a road game against a rising Tennessee Titans squad.

The Titans are favored in this game, and with good reason, as superstar running back Chris Johnson is preparing to face the NFL's 20th-ranked rushing defense. Furthermore, conservative quarterback Jake Locker has a chance to break out against the league's lowest-ranked passing defense.

Until Locker can average better than 136.5 passing yards per game, however, it's going to be tough to trust the Titans.

The Chargers counter Locker and Johnson with Rivers and Ryan Mathews. Mathews has underwhelmed, but Rivers has seven passing touchdowns to one interception and is fresh off a performance in which he threw for 419 yards against the Eagles.

The Titans have the squad necessary to pull out this win, but the Chargers are displaying signs of life under new head coach Mike McCoy. If not for a second-half meltdown against the Texans, San Diego would be 2-0.

This is a tough game to pick, but San Diego will defeat the odds.