2018 New York Jets Road Schedule Odds with Expert Picks and Predictions
It's a good thing that the Yankees are good this year because it has been a really rough time of late sports-wise in New York. The Mets are a mess as is typical. Both of New York City's hockey teams, the Rangers and Islanders, missed the playoffs last season - almost tough to do in the NHL - and don't look any better for 2018-19. The Knicks missed the playoffs for the fifth straight season and will start with another new head coach in 2018-19. The Nets are still in tank mode but at least don't owe the Celtics any more first-round picks.
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I would have bet you almost any amount of money entering the 2017 season that the New York Giants would have won more games than the New York Jets. And, of course, I would have lost because Gang Green finished a surprising 5-11 compared to Big Blue's 3-13. I seriously doubted the Jets would win more than two games or that coach Todd Bowles would last the season. It's not often five wins is considered a step forward for an NFL franchise, but for the Jets it was and Bowles was given a two-year extension as was GM Mike Maccagnan.
Not sure I agree with those deals considering New York was 3-2 at one point and during a season-ending four-game losing streak dropped three of those by a least 12 points. But, there's no arguing that the team was competitive pretty much every Sunday. The Jets were slotted to pick sixth in the 2018 NFL Draft but knew they needed to move up to get their franchise quarterback.
They did, sending No. 6 and two 2018 second-round choices (Nos. 37 and 49) to Indianapolis for the No. 3. There, New York took USC quarterback Sam Darnold - a guy whom I guarantee you the team never thought would be there. The Browns were supposed to take him No. 1 overall but surprised everyone with Baker Mayfield. Then, the Giants took running back Saquon Barkley at No. 2 - a running back over the top-rated QB in the modern NFL? Hmm. I believe the Jets were one of the big winners of the 2018 draft. Will it manifest itself this year? Probably not, but I'm sure Darnold will see playing time around midseason with this team at 1-7 or something. I'd much rather have Darnold than Mayfield. Josh McCown and/or Teddy Bridgewater will keep the seat warm for Darnold to start the season.
New York was 1-7 on the road last season, 2-5-1 against the spread and 3-5 "over/under." The Jets travel to four playoff teams from 2017 with three of those in a row: Jacksonville, Tennessee, Buffalo and New England. The home slate looks tougher. I project another 1-7 road record. Odds listed for the home team.
Sept. 10 at Lions ( -7, 44): First of the opening-week Monday night doubleheader. It's the head-coaching debut of former New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, who clearly is familiar with the Jets' scheme and personnel. It's the Jets' first prime-time opener since a 27-24 comeback win at home over Dallas on Sunday night Sept. 11, 2011. Key trend: Jets 5-4-1 ATS in past 10 as September road dog of at least 7 points.
Sept. 20 at Browns (-2.5): Probably the worst Thursday night game of the season, although if it's Mayfield vs. Darnold then it gets very interesting. I seriously doubt either is playing by Week 3. This is the Jets' final prime-time game. It's also the first time in four years their TNF opponent isn't Buffalo. New York traveled to Cleveland each of the past two years and won them both by three points. Key trend: Jets 4-1 ATS in past five at Browns.
Sept. 30 at Jaguars (-9.5): It's the first time since 2002 that the Jets will play three September road games. That year's schedule also included a game at Jacksonville. Last year, the Jets upset the Jags, 23-20 in overtime in Week 4. Chandler Catanzaro kicked a 41-yard field goal with 28 seconds left in OT. It never should have gone to OT, but the Jets blew a 10-point fourth-quarter lead. Key trend: Jets 5-4-1 ATS in past 10 as a road dog of at least 9.5 points.
Oct. 28 at Bears (-4.5): One useless bit of info here is that Bowles has known new Bears coach Matt Nagy since Nagy was a toddler. That's because Nagy's father Bill was a coach on Bowles' high school team in Elizabeth, N.J. This is a legitimate win chance for the Jets. They have lost four straight in the series, though. Key trend: Jets 3-3-1 ATS at NFC North foes.
Nov. 4 at Dolphins (-4): I'd rather have Darnold than Ryan Tannehill, and I think the Dolphins would too. New York could have swept Miami last year but blew a 14-point fourth-quarter lead in south Florida and lost 31-28 in Week 7. McCown threw three touchdown passes and ran for another for the Jets, but his pick in the final minute set up the winning field goal. Key trend: Mets 7-2-1 ATS in past 10 as road dog in series.
Dec. 2 at Titans (-8.5): This is the Jets' fourth game overall against a rookie head coach - former Patriots linebacker and Texans DC Mike Vrabel. New York won the last meeting in this series, 30-8 at home in December 2015. Key trend: Jets 5-5 ATS in past 10 at Titans.
Dec. 9 at Bills (-4): Easily could be Josh Allen vs. Darnold by this point of the season - the Jets reportedly were going to take Allen at No. 3 if Darnold was gone. The Jets have dropped five of their past six in Buffalo. It was 21-12 in Week 1 last year. Key trend: Jets 5-5 ATS in past 10 as road dog in series.
Dec. 30 at Patriots (TBA): Per usual, no Week 17 lines. This could be the difference of an O/U of two road wins because the Patriots usually have nothing to play for in Week 17. Could it be the final regular-season home game in the Tom Brady-Bill Belichick era? New York closed last season with a 26-6 loss in Foxboro. Bryce Petty started that game for the Jets; he's long gone. Key trend: Jets 4-5-1 ATS in past 10 as road dog in series.
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