|3 NYJ (-105) @ Fanduel|
9* Take the New York Jets (#115)
Every quote coming out of the Patriots locker room over the last two weeks – since their playoff hopes were dashed – has been about what a hard season it’s been, and how difficult it is for the veterans to maintain their focus and energy down the stretch. Cam Newton has been benched twice in the last three weeks, but Jared Stidham hasn’t looked much better working with arguably the weakest receiving corps in the NFL. New England showed very little fight in each of their last three losses; the last two coming in divisional games, where, in theory, they should be fighting. This is a ‘quit’ team laying points in their meaningless season finale, a clear ‘bet-against’ as a favorite on Sunday.
The Jets spent the first three months of the season looking like New England does now – hopeless. But things have changed dramatically down the stretch – they’ve knocked off playoff teams in each of the last two weeks; playing their best football of the season right now. Center Connor McGovern: “This team doesn’t have any quit in them.” Sam Darnold is playing for his NFL future, a motivated QB. The Jets defensive line completely dominated a solid Browns offensive line last week, primed for similar success here. The Jets have locked up the #2 pick in the draft – a win here is GOOD for the organization, not bad. And let’s not forget that the Jets had the Patriots on the ropes in the first meeting; leading by double digits in the fourth quarter. With nine straight losses in this series, this is most assuredly a meaningful Week 17 games for the road underdog. Be sure to take at least a taste of the Jets on the moneyline at +140 or higher for this one, although the majority of my wager is taking the points. Take the Jets.