New York Jets Odds to Win the Super Bowl and Betting Futures
by Alan Matthews - 6/19/2014
I'll admit it: When I did these NFL previews last year, I thought the Jets would be one of the worst teams in the AFC. They were throwing rookie quarterback Geno Smith to the wolves right away because of a preseason injury to Mark Sanchez. The running backs looked bland, the receivers far below average. The defense looked OK. Coach Rex Ryan was at the top of those "first NFL coach to be fired props."
Yes, New York did miss the playoffs for a third straight year but finished 8-8 by winning three of its final four games. Apparently .500 is good enough in the Big Apple as it earned Ryan a multi-year extension. In fact, Jets owner Woody Johnson announced that Ryan was staying in the locker room following New York's Week 17 upset of Miami, which kept the Dolphins out of the playoffs. Ryan is 42-38 in five seasons, the second-highest winning percentage in Jets history. He also holds the franchise record with four postseason wins. However, I think the team eats his extension if the Jets go backward even though the players love the guy.
This was not a good unit last season, to no one's surprise. The Jets were a solid rushing team, ranking sixth, but finished 25th in total yards because they were second-to-last in passing with 183.3 yards per game. There was a time or two when Smith was scuffling that Ryan threatened to start someone else, but the rookie got the call in all 16 games. He was definitely a turnover machine with 25 total but also led a handful of fourth-quarter come-from-behind wins. In the six games Smith had a rating of at least 80, the Jets were 6-0. Smith will be battling Michael Vick for the starting job in camp, but it's Smith's job to lose. Vick would have to vastly outplay him to steal it, and Vick already has said as much publicly.
The Jets will be run-heavy again this year. Chris Ivory (833 yards) and Bilal Powell (697) yards were a decent 1-2 punch last year, but those guys probably are second and third string now behind new addition Chris Johnson. He's nowhere near the player who ran for 2,000 yards a few years back but still an upgrade and has big-play potential. Smith's new No. 1 receiver is Eric Decker. He was massively overpaid because Decker put up huge numbers in Denver thanks to Peyton Manning, but he'll catch his share of touchdown passes at 6-foot-3. Decker totaled 24 TD passes the past two years. The No. 2 opposite him is still up for grabs, likely to be either Stephen Hill or David Nelson.
Ryan was hands-on with this group last year, and it ranked 11th overall. The Jets were tremendous against the rush, allowing just 88.3 yards per game (No. 3) but not good against the pass, ranking No. 22. Their 3,947 passing yards allowed were the team's most since 1986. Defensive end Sheldon Richardson was named the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. He had 78 tackles and 3.5 sacks; Richardson was acquired with the pick the Jets got for trading Darrelle Revis to Tampa Bay following the 2012 season. That defensive line was the strength of the defense.
New York cut Pro Bowl cornerback Antonio Cromartie this offseason and essentially is replacing him with journeyman Dimitri Patterson, formerly of the Dolphins. Fellow cornerback Dee Milliner was injury prone and very inconsistent as a hyped rookie out of Alabama, getting benched by Ryan a few times. It's no surprise that the team addressed the secondary in the first round of May's draft with Louisville safety Calvin Pryor.
2014 New York Jets Schedule Analysis
The Jets have the ninth-toughest schedule in the NFL as their opponents went a combined 132-122-2 last season, a winning percentage of .520. It's the toughest schedule in the AFC East. New York's road slate (.523) is slightly harder than its home (.516) one. The Jets open the season at home as 6-point favorites against Oakland, which will be just fine with them. That's because New York scored a season-high 37 points in Week 14 at home against the Raiders last season. Smith had just one turnover while completing 16 of 25 for 219 yards and a score, also running for an 8-yard TD. Ivory ran 18 times for 76 yards and a score. The Jets jumped to a 10-0 first-quarter lead and the game was never much in doubt again.
I would call Week 1 a must-win for the Jets as they are likely not going to get a victory Week 2 at Green Bay. Then the Bears and Lions visit MetLife Stadium, so a 3-1 first quarter of the season is possible. New York is 11-6 under Ryan in September, his best month record-wise. The toughest three-game stretch of the schedule is Week 5-7: at San Diego. vs. Denver, at the Patriots on a short week. That's really unfair, having to face Peyton Manning and Tom Brady in the span of four days. After that, however, the schedule is kind with only two games against playoff teams: Week 9 in Kansas City and Week 16 against the Pats. The one downside of the final four games is three are on the road.
2014 New York Jets Odds to Win the Super Bowl and Futures Odds
Odds courtesy of Sportsbook.ag . The Jets are +7000 to win the Super Bowl, +2800 to win the AFC title and +850 to win the AFC East. New York's wins total is set at 7, with the "over" a -145 favorite. Pryor is +2500 to win NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. Smith is +50000 to top the NFL in passing yards. Ivory is +10000 to lead the league in rushing and Johnson is +7500. Decker is +10000 to lead the NFL in receiving yards.
2014 New York Jets Picks and Betting Predictions
A bit surprised the wins total isn't at least 7.5 as this team looks better on paper, especially offensively, than last season's club. The schedule also seems rather manageable with back-to-back road games only once. I'd go "over" the wins. Can't recommend any of the other props, although it might not be a bad idea to drop a few dollars on winning the AFC East. The Patriots don't look unbeatable, and if Tom Brady were to get hurt I think the Jets are ahead of the Dolphins in the pecking order.
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Read more articles by Alan Matthews
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