Part of the reason my NCAA pigskin record is a wee-bit shinier than my NFL record is a proficiency with wide point-spreads and potential blow-outs. I’m known as the guy who gets just as jazzed-up about successfully picking Georgia Southern to cover in Death Valley as getting the Clemson-Alabama pick right in 2018 (luckily, I managed to do both). It would get easier for a blow-out specialist to predict NFL market-outcomes if The Shield kept churning-out lopsided pairings.
But nope…in Week 9 there’s a whole lot of parity after all.
In fact, it’s pretty hard to find MLs with a “2” at the beginning. Buffalo is expected to blow-out Washington, and Seattle and Cleveland are fairly-solid favorites to beat the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Denver Broncos respectively. Other than that it’s all tight odds on Sunday…prior to the more liberally-handicapped Monday Night Football meeting between the New York Giants and visiting Dallas Cowboys.
There’s 1 game nobody on Earth would be surprised about the tight odds for, however, and that’s because the NFL clubs might spend 3 hours trying to give the game away. At least 1 of the teams is already giving-away as much of the current roster as humanly possible.
It’s the battle of resistible force meets movable object…the New York Jets at the Miami Dolphins.
Who: New York Jets at Miami Dolphins
When: Sunday, November 3rd, 1 PM EST
Where: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami, FL
Lines: NY (+3) at Miami (-3) / O/U Total: (42.5)
It has been touted as a meeting of the 2 worst offenses in the NFL. The Jets and Dolphins each rank among the worst in the league in all yardage categories.
There was a brief spark of hope for the ‘Jersey Jets when Sam Darnold returned from illness to shine vs the Cowboys in Week 6, but after getting shut-out by New England the following week Darnold struggled again against the Jaguars. The former 3rd-overall pick was actually pretty accurate throwing the ball over the course of the game, but mistakes proved costly as he tossed 3 more INTs.
Sparing good news for the Jets includes a quality run defense. Despite being on the field more than any other of 31 units, the group is holding opposing backs to just 3.25 YPC, good for 2nd in the NFL behind only the Buccaneers. In last week’s 29-15 loss at Jacksonville, New York held workhorse back Leonard Fournette to 76 yards on 19 carries.
Miami looks like a baseball or hockey team going through a sell-off phase. The Dolphins have traded another potential star in Kenyan Drake, with coaches paying lip-service to the idea that the move simply makes space for RB Mark Walton. Drafted by the Bengals in 2018, the former Miami Hurricane got his 1st big chance against the Bills, rushing 14 times for 66 yards. Last week in a 27-14 loss to Pittsburgh, the Dolphins as a team ran the ball just 19 times, and Walton carried it 11 times for 35 yards. That kind of puts to rest any notion that Miami was “improving its chance to win” with the trade of Drake to Arizona.
Miami is getting outscored 130-20 in the 2nd half of games this season. To make matters worse, the Miami defense also took another hit this weekend, losing CB Xavien Howard who was placed on IR as he wrestles with a knee injury.
You’d think the lowly state of affairs in Magic City would lead to a rush of wagers on the Jets, but the opposite has been true – Darnold’s team opened as a 1-to-3 favorite but action has expanded the visitors’ moneyline to (-170).
Bet against the public here. Miami has no interest in winning football games in 2019, and while the Jets’ injury list resembles a sheet of war casualties after a gigantic invasion, the Dolphins have a ton of bruises too:
The Miami Dolphins could have two key veterans play in Sunday’s game against the New York Jets, but it’s likely both players will be held out as they continue to nurse nagging injuries. Safety Reshad Jones and center Daniel Kilgore on Friday were both listed as doubtful after limited participation in practice this week. “Both guys are working, but we’ll see,” Dolphins coach Brian Flores said. “I think it’ll be tight for both guys.” Jones practiced on a limited basis on Thursday and Friday after a chest injury sidelined him the last two games. Jones has started only three of Miami’s seven games because of various injuries.
Kilgore, Miami’s anchor on the offensive line who started the first five games, was a limited participant in each of the three practices this week. Kilgore was inactive the last two games due to a right knee injury he suffered against the Washington Redskins on Oct. 13. Rookie cornerback Ken Webster suffered a foot injury against the Steelers and will not play Sunday.
I’m going with the team that’s at least trying to win football games now…albeit unsuccessfully most weeks.
Take the New York Jets ATS.