Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:56 AM
MNF - Patriots at Jets
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New England (-9, 43.5) at N.Y. Jets, 8:15 pm ET, ESPN
The transitive property could get itself quite the workout on Monday if the masses decide to talk themselves into throwing caution to the wind and backing the Jets against Tom Brady and the Patriots.
New York destroyed Dallas last week in Sam Darnold’s return from a bout with mono. The Cowboys got their tackles back, returned home and pulverized the Eagles 37-10. Just who does this Brady guy have alongside him anyway?
Backing the Jets over the Pats is the present-day NFL equivalent of riding David over Goliath or the Generals over the Globetrotters. It’s riding Charlie Brown to kick that football. However, friendly bookmakers typically manage to provided incentive that has actually made it more profitable to take the points with New York over New England this decade. That includes an outright upset the only time the teams met in the playoffs. For proof, see the recent series history below for everyone of their outcomes since 2010.
The Jets haven’t won at Foxboro since their Divisional Playoff win back in ’11, the crowning moment of both Mark Sanchez’s career and the franchise’s last two decades. Despite losses in 15 of 17 against their New England-based tormentors, the Jets have posted a pair of overtime wins at home and were tied at 13 in the third-quarter of last season’s visit before the Jets pulled away. That was without Darnold, who has only been able to participate in one of three games against the Patriots since being drafted.
New York failed to cover in the 27-13 loss, snapping a run of five straight home covers against the Pats. The Jets then got crushed 38-3 in Week 17 as Darnold ran into a finely tuned buzzsaw that was preparing for a Super Bowl run. When the teams squared off on Sept. 22, Darnold was home dealing with the effects of his virus and Luke Falk took the reins. The Patriots stifled the Jets offense and raced out to a 30-0 lead before coughing up the cover on a fumble recovery in the end zone after a muffed punt and Jamal Adams’ 61-yard interception return of an errant Jarrett Stidham pass.
The Patriots could’ve named their score in that game, making it a tough beat for those who had laid the 20 points and appeared to be cruising with Falk having little chance of moving the Jets’ offense. The dynamic absolutely changes with Darnold, who is better equipped to improve on his final showing of his rookie season despite having played in just two regular-season games since then.
Darnold put together a few tremendous throws against the Cowboys and should benefit from the presence of LeVeon Bell, who looks far more comfortable in the offense than the only other time he took the field alongside New York’s franchise QB back in Week 1. Although Quincy Enunwa has been lost for the season with a neck injury, Robby Anderson remains an option that can help Darnold stretch the field and reliable veterans Demaryius Thomas and Jamison Crowder have helped upgrade the unit. Bell, Bilal Powell and Ty Montgomery are all available, so checkdowns and screens have a chance to pop against the stingy Patriots, who lead the NFL with a scoring average allowed of just eight points per game.
Thomas’ hamstring could be an issue for him, but he wants nothing more than to be out there against New England, which cut him once it acquired the since-released Antonio Brown. Thomas called his release “disrespectful” and Bill Belichick admitted backing out of a commitment to him due to circumstances changing, so that’s a situation worth watching. Check out the injury report below for more variables worth keeping an eye on.
As far as the number goes, Darnold isn’t worth 10-plus points to a spread, but a six-point shift and the Jets actually having a chance to move the ball has led the number to shift a full five points, which is indeed an overestimation of the second-year quarterback’s value. The Patriots have covered in four of their six wins but are just 1-2 ATS against divisional foes, having beaten the Dolphins 43-0 but scuffling in a 16-10 win in Buffalo. The Bills have been the only team to be within one possession of New England in a fourth-quarter all season.
Despite Brady lacking a truly elite go-to receiver like a Brown or Rob Gronkowski, New England has led at halftime in every one of their games. Only Washington has held a lead after a quarter. A sack-fumble of Brady that Giants’ LB Markus Golden returned for six and a fluke 64-yard strike from rookie Daniel Jones to Golden Tate represent the only touchdowns the Patriots’ defense has allowed in the second quarter of games this season.
The Pats have outscored opponents 53-7 to open games, surrendering only a 65-yard run on a busted coverage to ‘Skins backup RB Steven Sims Jr. Belichick’s preparation and the execution of his defense has been elite. We’ll see if Darnold is up to the task in just his second game back. The Westgate lists the first-quarter line as NE -3 with a total of 7.5. The first-half line favors New England by six points with a total set at 21.5. That ‘under’ looks appealing. For a free MNF prop winner, click here.
The Patriots look to continue a trend that has seen the favorite dominate Monday night games (7-0 SU, 5-2 ATS). For more details, check out VI’s MNF Schedule.br>
Clear conditions are expected in East Rutherford, with light winds accompanying temperatures in the mid-50s.
Oddsmakers sent out a total of 43 ½ between the Patriots and Jets and the number has held steady as of Monday morning. When the pair met in Week 3 from Foxboro, the total closed in the same neighborhood and the defensive scores for the Jets helped the ‘over’ cash albeit very luckily.
VegasInsider.com totals expert Chris David offered up his total thoughts and lean on the MNF matchup.
“Rematch games are never an easy handicap, especially this early in the season but a different outcome should be expected with Darnold at quarterback for the Jets. New England’s defense has been lights out but they haven’t faced a legit signal caller since Week 1 when the stifled Big Ben and the Steelers by a 33-3 count," David said. "Darnold faced New England last season in Week 17 and he looked like a rookie as the Jets were blitzed 38-3 on the road. The second-year QB wasn’t great on third-down conversions last week (2-of-10) in the 24-22 win over Dallas but he’s not afraid to fire and can put his team in scoring positions.”
Prior to the Week 3 ‘over’ ticket, the ‘under’ was on a 6-0 run in this series going back to the 2016 regular season. Looking at those number further, New York has been held to 13, 17 and 17 points at MetLife Stadium. While the Dallas outcome went ‘over’ last Sunday, the Jets saw the ‘under’ cash in their first four games.
New England has watched the ‘under’ go 4-2 on the season and that record could easily be 6-0 if it wasn’t for the two defensive scores in the Jets game, plus last Thursday’s result versus the other New York (Giants) team was helped with three combined defensive and special teams scores.
In David’s weekly total segment on the VI Bet and Collect podcast, he often hits on seasonal angles and total systems that have produced profits and this game hits on one popular angle.
“The ‘Thursday Night Total’ system is back and alive in 2019 and it’s simple to follow. The angle calls for finding out who played at home on Thursday in the previous week and playing the ‘over’ in their next game, regardless of the venue," David added. "The play sits at 4-1 (80%) on the season and this week's matchup calls for an 'over' play on the New England-N.Y. Jets game this Monday, since the Patriots hosted the N.Y. Giants last Thursday from Foxboro. Even though this has been an ‘under’ series, the Patriots have averaged 29.7 PPG in their last seven versus the Jets. I’m buying more points here and going to ride the ‘over’ in this spot (43 ½) and press the system.”
New England Patriots
Projected season win total: 11 (Over -150, Under +130)
Odds to win AFC East (pre-Week 1/current): 1/5 to 1/40
Odds to win AFC (pre-Week 1/current): 11/4 to 5/9
Odds to win Super Bowl (pre-Week 1/current): 6/1 to 7/4
New York Jets
Projected season win total: 7.5 (Over -110, Under -110)
Odds to win AFC East (pre-Week 1/current): 6/1 to 100/1
Odds to win AFC (pre-Week 1/current): 30/1 to 250/1
Odds to win Super Bowl (pre-Week 1/current): 60/1 to 500/1
Caesars' Senior Oddsmaker Alan Berg provides insights from behind the counter.
"The ticket count and money favor the Patriots" said Berg, whose excellent observations can be found on Twitter at @PercentBerg. "I'ts going to be an interesting game since it's the Jets' best shot at getting back into the race with the mighty Pats cruising. However, there's no sharp support for the upset here -- at least not yet (Sunday night)."
The Jets are expected to get top linebacker C.J. Mosley back from a groin injury, which is a huge boost considering the lift he’s supplied when out there. The team’s top defensive offseason acquisition would strengthen a group that has quality young talent in Adams at safety and Quinnen Williams and Henry Anderson up front. Anderson is trying to overcome a shoulder issue that may keep him out, so keep an ear out for official word. LBs Albert McClellan (concussion) and Neville Hewitt (stinger) aren’t expected to suit up. DT Steven McClendon and corners Daryl Roberts and Nate Hairston are questionable.
New York is certain to make changes up front with left guard Kelechi Osemele out and filing a grievance over his situation. Left tackle Kelvin Beachum is ‘doubtful’ with an ankle injury, so rookie Chume Edoga is expected to start. Brandon Shell is expected to switch back to right tackle, but right guard Brian Winters popped up on the week’s report with a knee issue. Center Matt Kalilis questionable due to a shoulder issue that kept him from practicing over the weekend, while left guard Alex Lewis is hoping to play through neck pain. There’s a lot going on for the Jets’ offensive line, so it remains to be seen how that impacts Adam Gase’s play-calling.
The Patriots won't have their top tight ends since Matt LaCosse (knee) and Ryan Izzo (concussion) have been ruled out, creating opportunities for Ben Watson in his return and newcomer Eric Tomlinson, a former Jet. Rumors had the Pats sniffing around about the availability of Tampa Bay's O.J. Howard, who hasn't been utilized as envisioned in what was expected to be a breakthrough year for him. New England has already ruled out WR Josh Gordon (leg) and lists Phillip Dorsett as questionable due to a hamstring injury, so Brady is going to have a shortage of familiar targets. Julian Edelman (chest) is a go. Dorsett should participate.
Safety Patrick Chung is questionable and DE Michael Bennett (suspension) will sit for the Patriots.
(Patriots 16-4 SU, 8-12 ATS last 20, OVER 12-8)
9/22/19 Patriots 30-14 vs. Jets (NYJ +20.5, 43)
12/30/18 Patriots 38-3 vs. Jets (NE -14.5, 46.5)
11/25/18 Patriots 27-13 at Jets (NE -13, 46.5)
12/31/17 Patriots 26-6 vs. Jets (NE -17, 43.5)
10/15/17 Patriots 24-17 at Jets (NYJ +9, 48.5)
12/24/16 Patriots 41-3 vs. Jets (NE -17, 45)
11/27/16 Patriots 22-17 at Jets (NYJ +8.5, 48)
12/27/15 Jets 26-20 OT vs. Patriots (NYJ +3, 45)
10/25/15 Patriots 30-23 vs. Jets (NYJ +7.5, 47.5)
12/21/14 Patriots 17-16 at Jets (NYJ +10, 47)
10/16/14 Patriots 27-25 vs. Jets (NYJ +9.5, 44.5)
10/20/13 Jets 30-27 OT vs. Patriots (NYJ +3, 43)
9/12/13 Patriots 13-10 vs. Jets (NYJ +11.5, 43)
11/22/12 Patriots 49-19 at Jets (NE -7, 48.5)
10/21/12 Patriots 29-26 OT vs. Jets (NYJ +10.5, 47)
11/13/11 Patriots 37-16 at Jets (NE +2.5, 47)
10/9/11 Patriots 30-21 vs. Jets (NE -7.5, 50)
1/16/11 Jets 28-21 at Patriots (NYJ +9.5, 45)
12/6/10 Patriots 45-3 vs. Jets (NE -4, 44.5)
9/19/10 Jets 28-14 vs. Patriots (NYJ +3, 39.5)
NEXT WEEK'S NUMBERS POSTED
The Westgate opens its advance lines for the following week on Tuesdays and Week 8 currently has the Patriots as an 11.5-point home favorite over a Browns team that has lost three of four but will be coming in off a bye. The Jets will hit the road to face the Jaguars in North Florida and have been installed as a 4.5-point underdog.
Follow Tony Mejia on Twitter at @TonyMejiaNBA