Rutgers Football Week 2: Best Bets vs. Temple
Rutgers is preparing to take on Temple in Week 2 — and will do so with two recent matchups with opposite outcomes.
In 2021, the Owls traveled to SHI Stadium to take on Rutgers and it was a 61-14 victory for the home team. Temple welcomed a new head coach in Stan Drayton last season and he brought a new level of toughness to Temple. Rutgers struggled to put offense together last year and escaped with a 16-14 win thanks to a defensive score.
What will the outcome be this year?
Rutgers is currently a 9.5-point favorite, according to FanDuel. The total is set at 44. In Week 1, neither offense lit up the scoreboard and currently has many question marks.
The Scarlet Knights brought in Kirk Ciarrocca to be the new offensive coordinator in the offseason. Against Northwestern, Rutgers displayed an improvement in play-calling and at the quarterback position. Gavin Wimsatt looked comfortable within the offense while Ciarrocca kept it simple. This led to a 24-7 win but questions still remain offensively.
Temple survived with a 24-21 victory over Akron in Week 1. The Owls lost Jose Barbon, who logged 72 catches last season, but brought in Colorado State transfer Dante Wright, who led the way with seven catches. One thing we know is that Temple is not afraid to throw the football.
E.J. Warner threw the ball 49 times last week. This is not out of the ordinary for the offense. Last season, Warner finished with nine games of 30 or more pass attempts, five with 40 or more, and even had one game each with 50 and 60 pass attempts. This will be a test for Rutgers secondary because Temple has struggled to run the ball and will prioritize the pass.
With that being said, it does not mean it will directly correlate to points being scored. Warner showed a bit of inconsistency last week, going 28-for-49.
With a number set at 44, the under could be a strong play for two offenses who are still searching for an identity.
This is a difficult number to think about. If Rutgers comes in and takes control, it could win by multiple scores. If Temple sets the tone like last year, it will be another ugly game that could be decided by seven points or less.
Temple struggled to stop the run last season, allowing nearly 200 yards per game. The Scarlet Knights have a deep running back room but are still dealing with some injuries. Both Samuel Brown and Aaron Young missed the season-opener on Sunday. It is unknown if one or either will be ready for Temple and we will likely find out two hours prior to kickoff.
A key matchup will be a talented group of receivers for Temple vs. a strong secondary for Rutgers. Along with Wright, Temple brought back its second-leading receiver from last season in Amad Anderson. Max Melton and Robert Longerbeam are a strong duo in the secondary for Rutgers and both logged an interception in Week 1.
When betting this game, it seems hard to feel good about either side of this number. The under seems like the play in a game where both teams will try to set the tone early and gain control.
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