Miami Dolphins ( 3-3 SU, 3-2-1 ATS) vs. New York Jets (3-4 SU, 4-2-1 ATS)
NFL Week 8
Date/Time: Sunday, October 28, 1:00 p.m. EST
Where: MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
TV: CBS/DirecTV 710
by Vesper Abadon, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Mia +2.5/NYJ -2.5
Over/Under Total: 40.5
Things have been tight in the AFC East; in fact, all four teams were tied at 3-3 headed into Week 7. The Buffalo Bills lost and the Miami Dolphins were on a bye, which meant the winner of the New York Jets vs. New England Patriots game would take over first in the division. It was a memorable encounter, but the Jets ended up losing a heartbreaker in overtime to drop to 3-4.
Interestingly, the Jets will take on the Dolphins in Week 8, a team they scored an overtime win in back in Week 3. The two teams always play each other hard, and this one will be no different, especially when you throw in the divisional ramifications. Their first meeting was a close affair, and the stats suggest this one will be too.
To give you an idea of how balanced these teams are, look no further than the teams’ respective quarterbacks. The Jets’ Mark Sanchez comes into Week 8 as the 30th-ranked QB with a rating of 74.6, going 116 of 218 for 1,453 yards and six touchdowns; meanwhile, the Dolphins’ Ryan Tannehill is ranked 29th with a 76.5 rating, going 118 of 198 for 1,454 yards and seven touchdowns-a single yard separates the two. Those numbers are nothing to brag about; however, Tannehill is the rookie while Sanchez is in his fourth year, so expect the former to continue to rise and the latter to slide.
If the QBs aren’t proof enough, take a look at the teams’ top receivers. Jeremy Kerley of the Jets has 25 catches for 435 yards (17.4 average) and two touchdowns, while the Dolphins’ Brian Hartline has 29 catches for 514 yards (17.7 average) and one touchdown. It doesn’t get much more equal than that.
If there’s any area that might give one team might an edge, it’s the running game. The Dolphins have the 11th best rushing attack in the league thanks to Reggie Bush and Lamar Miller-the former has carrying 98 times for 434 yards (4.4 average) and three touchdowns, and the latter 23 times for 126 yards (5.5 average) and a touchdown. That’s slightly better than the Jets’ 14th-ranked rush attack led by Shonn Greene, who has 124 carries for 432 yards (3.5 average) and five touchdowns.
With that said, the Dolphins boast a heck of a run defense and held Greene to just 40 yards on 19 carries in Week 3. They’ll likely do the same this week and put the pressure squarely on Sanchez’s shoulders.
Speaking of defense, the two teams are once again balanced; in fact, a tenth of a yard separate them in the average total yards allowed per game (363 YPG for the Dolphins and 362.9 YPG for the Jets). Overall the Dolphins are ranked 20th, allowing 284.8 passing YPG and 78.2 rushing YPG, and the Jets 19th, allowing 215.1 passing YPG and 147.7 rushing YPG.
This ought to be one of the more entertaining games of Week 8 with big-time consequences in the AFC East as both teams need a win if they want to compete for the division title.
Vesper Abadon’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Given how close these two teams play against one another (their last two matchups were decided by three and two points respectively), I understand the tight line; however, I’m surprised the Jets are the favorites. Sure, they’re playing at home, but the Dolphins come in with a better record and slightly better statistics. I’m a fan of the revamped Dolphins, so I advocate taking advantage of the line by betting them on the road. The Dolphins have had an extra week to rest and prepare, and I feel that will allow them to avenge their Week 3 loss. I’m betting the Phins plus the points!
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