Total Domination: Week 14
A weekly look at games that could exceed or fall short of betting market expectations. Bettors can leverage recommendations at the sportsbook, while DFS players can use the specific player recommendations mentioned to their advantage. Steve Repsold deep dives each recommendation and advises us the level of bet confidence expressed in units (example: 2u = 2 units).
New York Jets at Buffalo Bills (-4) Over 38 1.5u
Two points below the Lions at Cardinals, 38 is the lowest total of the week. While I don’t expect this game to be a barn-burner, a total that low is begging for the over. I’m not going to pretend that these offenses are anything special, but there are reasons for optimism, especially on the Bills’ side of the ball. Just four weeks ago, these two teams met in Jersey and put 51 points on the board. The Bills accounted for 41 of them.
That was in a duel between Matt Barkley and Josh McCown. It also kicked off a three-game streak of over 300 yards of offense and over 400 in two of three for the Bills. The Jets’ defense has been simultaneously collapsing, with yardage allowed totals of 451, 498, and 403 since their last game with the Bills. Since then they’ve lost linebacker Darron Lee to suspension. He was an almost every-down player with speed and represents another big loss for the Jets’ defense.
It’s rare that the return of starting quarterbacks doesn’t represent a big boost in offensive potential, but that’s the case here, at least for Sam Darnold. You can make the case for Josh Allen boosting the Bills. He certainly boosts their rushing potential, with over 200 yards on the ground in his last two games, a feat that 39-year old Josh McCown could not achieve (surprising note: in researching this, I learned that Josh McCown ran an astounding 4.59 at the combine, but still, that was 16 years ago). Conveniently, the Jets have gotten smashed on the ground with over 200 yards allowed in two of the last three, including the Bills without Allen.
I think it’s fair to consider the potential impact of defensive scores and short fields due to turnovers. Both of these quarterbacks have struggled with holding onto the ball, especially Darnold. He hasn’t played in weeks and he still leads the league in interceptions (14) and pick sixes (2). Allen has done better, in part because Darnold averaged 5 attempts more per game. Allen still has a 5:7 touchdown to interception ratio in eight games played (seven started). Both these defenses have had their moments and while we can’t bank on a defensive score, it’s reasonable to assume we see some turnovers providing great field position.
Our Premium content can help you make better picks every day
- To read this full article for this week’s NFL games, you need to have a subscription to Grinders Premium.
- A Premium subscription will allow you to access this article, as well as Consensus Value Rankings, daily picks from top-ranked players, and much more.
- If you have already used your free trial, you can purchase a weekly pass to quickly gain access to Premium Content!