Despite making tremendous strides in both free agency and the NFL draft, the New York Jets will still face an uphill battle to compete in a tough AFC East.
The odds are stacked against the Jets (+1600) winning the AFC East for the first time since 2002, due to the presence of the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots. Owners of the longest postseason drought in the NFL, which dates back to 2010, the Jets' futility is likely to extend at least another season. Since 2016, the Jets have only won more than five games just once, posting a dismal 27-70 (.278) record over that span.
Oddsmakers have not moved New York’s regular season win total of 5.5 games, however, the juice on the over has been reduced considerably as bettors have scrambled to grab the plus-odds on the under following quarterback Zach Wilson’s knee injury. Prior to Wilson’s injury, oddsmakers were demanding vig in excess of -225. However, as of Tuesday, several sharp sportsbooks have reduced the juice on the over to -150.
Faced with the uncertainty on just how long Wilson will be out, bettors and fantasy managers have begun to question the impact an extended absence would have on their skill-position players. If backup Joe Flacco is forced to lead the club for a significant amount of time, will that impede the production of wideouts Elijah Moore and Garrett Wilson as well as running back Breece Hall?
One wager has already become the target of respected money in Las Vegas.
Breece Hall under 830.5 rushing yards (-115)
The player to be impacted the most will be rookie running back Breece Hall. One of the biggest risers in early fantasy drafts, the former Iowa State standout will likely face more eight-man fronts as opposing defenses dare Flacco to beat them. The Jets' offensive line, which recently lost offensive tackle Mekhi Becton (knee) for the season, has failed to pave the way for any running back to exceed this rushing yards projection since Chris Ivory (1,070) back in 2015. In addition, last season’s leading rusher Michael Carter (639) will receive significant touches in the backfield which will also hinder the production of Hall in his first season in New York.