Jacksonville (+7) at NY JETS
For Sunday’s freebie in the NFL, take the Jaguars plus the points at the Jets.
Who is New York to be laying this kind of number against anyone? When last we saw the Jets two weeks ago, they were losing 30-25 at home to Miami as a 3½-point favorite.
That came two weeks after a 16-13 home loss to the crappy Bills as a 9½-point favorite. In fact, since starting the season 3-0 SU and ATS, New York has lost four of its last five both SU and ATS, going 1-3 ATS as a favorite. The one win? 38-0 over the Raiders – does that even count anymore?
As for Jacksonville, it has won four of its last six since opening the season with consecutive losses. Granted, the Jags’ last two defeats came on the road and in ugly fashion (41-0 at Seattle; 30-13 at Tennessee). But this is the same team that won at Houston earlier this year (31-24 as a four-point underdog) and went to Indy on Opening Day and gave the Colts all they could handle before falling 14-12, but covering as a 6½-point ‘dog.
While Jacksonville is 9-4 ATS in its last 13 as a sizeable underdog (3½ to 10 points), the Jets have failed to cover in eight of 10 as a favorite, five of six as a home favorite and six of seven when laying 3½ to 10 points. And for what it’s worth, the Jaguars covered in the last five straight meetings with the Jets from 1999-2006, going 4-1 SU (New York’s lone win was a three-point home victory).
Bottom line: The Jets’ offense has scored more than 25 points just twice this year (and that includes the rout at Oakland), and it is averaging just 19.5 ppg in four home contests. And with a slumping Mark Sanchez (4 TDs, 8 INTs last five games) at the controls, it’s an offense that just isn’t dynamic enough to cover this kind of number. The Dolphins proved that in New York two weeks ago, as did Buffalo two weeks before that. Grab the big points.
3♦ Jacksonville (based on a 1♦ to 10♦ scale)