Posted on: September 16, 2022, 04:32h.
Last update on: September 16, 2022, 04:33h.
Like the tango and the fox trot, the fortunes of the two New York metropolitan area football teams couldn’t have been more different a week ago. The question for this Sunday is whether their two swings in momentum continue into Week 2.
The Giants spent last Sunday night dancing in the Tennessee visitors locker room. Jets quarterback Joe Flacco spent last Sunday afternoon trying to force his way out of reach of passers, often without success.
New Giants coach Brian Daboll is the toast of the town after boldly going for a one-point-delayed 2-point conversion against the Titans with 1:06 to go. The team then survived a missed field goal on the final play of the game that every Giants fanatic was convinced would be good. Just goes to show that the past is in the past.
Flacco, meanwhile, was sacked three times, rushed countless other times and wasn’t exactly keen on buying dinner for his offensive line after the Jets’ 24-9 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Coach Robert Saleh has already ruled out turning to third QB Mike White while the team waits for Zach Wilson to be physically fit to play.
So it’s up to the offensive schemers on the Jets’ coaching staff to find ways to buy time for Flacco when he’s on the field, which won’t be that long if Cleveland running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt Browns control the game from possession time. They can do that by replicating what they did in their first game, rushing for a combined 187 yards in a 26-24 road win over Carolina.
What have we seen in gaming markets this week?
The Jets went from +6 to +6 1/2 over the week, and about 60% of the handful is coming to Cleveland, according to BetMGM. Nearly two-thirds of the handful come in on top of 42 1/2, which is curious since the Jets managed just nine runs in their home opener and will now play on the road.
The Giants are favored by 2 after the line opens at 2 1/2, and 60% of the handle arrives on Carolina, despite the questionable status of star running back Christian McCaffrey. The Giants limited Tennessee’s Derrick Henry to just 82 yards on 21 carries, while Saquon Barkley rushed for 164 yards on 18 carries and added 30 yards on six receptions.
Barkley’s scoring on the decisive 2-point conversion earned him Offensive Player of the Week honors, and his over/under rushing yardage was pegged at just 77 1/2 – possibly because that he has only bettered that number once in his last 13 games. season.
But as mentioned above, past is past, and Barkley was drafted second overall in 2018 for a reason. Yes, injuries have limited him. But he’s 100% now and will no doubt be at the center of the defense for Carolina, which gave up 217 rushing yards last week against Cleveland. The Panthers had the NFL’s No. 2 defense last season, but then again… the past is the past.
Still, the nickname “Same Old Jets” is part of the past that remains part of the present for Gang Green, and it will continue to be uttered until something changes in a major way. Starting this season with an aging backup quarterback who was under siege and had several passes dropped wasn’t exactly inspiring. We should expect the Jets to use first draft pick Garrett Wilson, the Ohio State rookie who went No. 10 in the draft but was only on the field for half of the Jets’ offensive plays, catching four passes for 52 yards.
The most shocking statistical fact for Jets fans is that Flacco completed 37 of 59 pass attempts while Lamar Jackson completed only 19 for the Ravens, but the Jets only managed one touchdown ( with an extra point missed) and a field goal. Jets head coach Robert Saleh had a crossword for fans who booed the home team off the field. That doesn’t endear him to people who shell out big bucks for personal seat licenses, season passes, and $15 beers.
He’s on hand this week, so expect him to pull a few tricks from his playbook to keep the Browns guessing.
None of these teams have any coverage history
Cleveland was just 8-9 last season, but went 6-3 at home. The Browns have covered in just three of nine home games. (The Jets were 2-5-0 ATS last season on the road).
The Giants were 0-1 ATS as a home favorite last season, while the Panthers were 2-4-0 ATS as a road dog. But take all those numbers with a grain of salt because last year has nothing to do with this year. Just ask the defending Super Boal champion Rams, who were defeated by New York’s other team, the Buffalo Bills, 31-10 in the season opener last Thursday.
Buffalo hosts the Tennessee Titans on Monday night and is favored by 10.
The Giants and Jets play at 1 p.m. EDT on Sunday, and weather conditions will be optimal. New Yorkers have plenty to celebrate with the Yankees and Mets both in contention for a World Series title, and the start of NBA training camps is less than two weeks away.
So the Jets and Giants aren’t just playing for respect, they’re playing for relevance. How that translates to what happens on Sunday remains to be seen.