NY Jets at Cleveland +3 O/U 37.5
Bettors have been burned badly by the Jets in each of the last two weeks. Following their bye, Rex Ryan’s squad was bet up from -4.5 to -6.5 at home against the Packers. New York never even sniffed a pointspread cover in that game, getting shut out 9-0. Last week, the Jets were bet up from -3.5 to -5.5 at Detroit, and again, never came close to covering. Only Matthew Stafford’s injury and a bizarre play calling sequence late in the game allowed the Jets enough time to rally back for the tie at the end of regulation. The Jets then won the coin toss to receive the opening kickoff of overtime, got a 52-yard bomb from Mark Sanchez to Santonio Holmes and quickly kicked the game winning field goal.
Let’s not forget that even prior to their bye week, the Jets were struggling to live up to pointspread expectations. They nearly lost at lowly Denver before a miracle fourth down pass interference call allowed them to score the winning touchdown in the closing seconds. And before that, the Jets needed a pick-six in the final minutes of the game to steal a pointspread cover against Minnesota on Monday Night football. The last time the Jets played a good ballgame start-to-finish came back on October 3rd against the winless Bills. After going 5-3 ATS in their first eight games, despite their major market status and public nature; New York is not on my list of ‘great value’ teams for the second half of the season.
Cleveland however is on that list. The Browns were an afterthought in the AFC North at the start of the season; virtually devoid of the marquee players that create hype in the NFL world. And they started the season playing like an afterthought, losing five of their first six games; covering only one pointspread in defeat. But after making the change to rookie Colt McCoy, mercifully sitting both Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace, the hard luck Browns have suddenly come alive with consecutive victories over two of the better teams in the NFL – New Orleans and New England.
The Browns have played one of the toughest schedules in the NFL. Seven of their opponents (Tampa Bay, Kansas City, Baltimore, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, New England and New Orleans) are at least two games over .500. Cleveland head coach Eric Mangini certainly has a decent amount of inside knowledge about the Jet’ personnel – New York fired him a year and a half ago. With the best bowling ball in the NFL – bruising, beefy running back Peyton Hillis – expect the Browns to step up in class in profitable fashion once again this week.