I want to preface the rest of this betting overview by saying one thing: please don’t hate me once you’re done reading.
Betting on the NFL sometimes forces you to make decisions that make you uncomfortable. Betting the New York Jets at home against the Tennessee Titans this week could be as uncomfortable as wearing a thick, fluffy sweater while running a marathon in 95-degree heat.
That’s why we like to bet, right? Let’s break down this AFC showdown between the Jets and the Titans:
- Open line: Tennessee -6.5
- Current line: Tennessee -7.5
- Total: 44.5
The same old jets?
Adam Gase and Sam Darnold are gone. Robert Saleh and Zach Wilson are here. But some things never change. The New York Jets are once again horribly inept and exposed all of their horrors in their last loss to the Denver Broncos.
The Jets clearly aren’t learning from mistakes made during Sam Darnold’s tenure. Poor Wilson has virtually no help. His offensive line allowed five sacks and nine hits for the quarterback in Denver. When Wilson was not under duress, his receivers let him down with four dropped passes. Wilson only made matters worse with two more interceptions.
During the 26-0 beating, the Jets racked up 162 total yards on 53 games. The running game was nonexistent, posting 43 yards on 13 carries. They had 11 first tries and went 4 for 13 on third down attempts.
Everything with the New York offensive is broken right now. However, the Jets’ defense is improving under Saleh and represents a silver lining. The Jets allow just 5.4 yards per game and just 3.8 yards per rushing attempt. It’s an unrecognized unit that plays strong despite being put in horrific situations by its inept attack.
New York’s defense will be without a key player, as safety Marcus Maye is out 3-4 weeks with an ankle injury.
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How good are the Titans?
Tennessee got the ship right after an embarrassing loss early in the season. However, I still wonder about the strength of this team.
Tennessee’s best moment of the season came in Week 2, when they rallied on the road to take out the Seattle Seahawks. However, that win doesn’t look as good after the Seahawks lost a 17-7 lead last weekend to Minnesota. This game may say more about Seattle than Tennessee.
The Titans identity hammers the boulder with Derrick Henry, wears down opposing defense, and uses play action to hit big plays.
Henry is once again leading the league with 353 rushing yards, but Tennessee’s passing game might not be at its peak on Sunday. Tennessee star receivers AJ Brown and Julio Jones both suffer from injuries heading into Week 4. Brown’s hamstring injury could cost him a game or two, while Jones’s status is completely down. uncertain.
the #Titans to be without their two best WRs this Sunday?
WR Julio Jones receives treatment for a leg injury and his status in relation to the #Jets is in the air, sources tell me and @TomPelissero. AJ Brown could also miss a week or two with a hamstring injury.
– Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 29, 2021
Jones struggling with an injury is nothing new, as he once did in Atlanta. But Tennessee’s lack of depth of jurisdiction position could be felt this week. Chester Rogers, Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and a plethora of obscure tight ends are expected to escalate if Jones and Brown are absent or even limited. Tennessee’s passing game deteriorated early on, and things could get worse for Ryan Tannehill, who averages just 5.9 net yards per attempt.
And if the Titans can’t score points, they could be in big trouble. The Tennessee defense is always a hot mess. The Titans allowed 6.1 yards per game and 7.3 net yards per passing attempt. They did a slightly better job of getting pressure and have seven sacks on the season. But Tennessee only has one takeaway in three games; even the Jets have two take out on season.
Well, we’ve come to the part where I’m going to recommend betting on the Jets, who are 0-3 against the spread. Supporting this team even at home makes me sick, but it feels like a place where this offense could, maybe, just maybe play out well.
Believe it or not, the Jets have pieces on offense. And although they were completely incompetent for three games, they faced three tough defenses in Carolina, New England and Denver. Tennessee’s defense isn’t close to the same caliber of those three aforementioned teams, and I expect Wilson and this offense to have more success moving the ball.
I’m also concerned about this Titans offense with Brown and Jones blowing up. The New York secondary is the weak link in that defense, but Tennessee might not be able to exploit this unit if their stud receivers are out. And while Derrick Henry will get his own, the Jets have a solid front seven that can hold him.
Finally, I expect New York to be fully motivated after hearing how terrible they are all week. Meanwhile, Tennessee is coming out of a huge rally over Seattle and a huge divisional victory over Indianapolis, the biggest threat to them in the AFC South. With a road trip to Jacksonville on the bridge, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Titans came out a bit flat.
The lookout lines had this at Tennessee -3.5, so seeing that line swell to -7.5 feels like overreaction. Lord help me, I’m going to recommend betting on the New York Jets. Like I said, please don’t hate me.
The choice : Throws +7.5
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Matt Barbato is a featured writer at BettingPros. To learn more about Matt, check out his archive and follow it @RealMattBarbato.
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