The New York Jets and the Miami Dolphins reprise their AFC East rivalry on Sunday when they collide at the Hard Rock Stadium. The Jets have nothing to play for and are playing out the string of their 2021 season. The Dolphins, however, have all to play for as they’re still alive in the AFC playoff race.
Given the contrasting fortunes of these familiar foes, it’s no surprise that the NFL odds are firmly ensconced in Miami’s camp. Books opened with the Dolphins as the 7-point home favorites while the total for the game opened on 44.5 points.
Since markets opened, the NFL line shot up to 8.5 points across the board while the game total dropped down to 42.5 points with several shops. Some have gone down as low as 42 points.
Clearly, Miami is widely expected to win this game and maintain hope alive for a postseason bid, but the question many NFL bettors are considering is whether to shade or fade the Dolphins as the 8.5-point home chalk for their NFL picks in what is widely expected to be a low-scoring game.
New York Jets vs. Miami Dolphins
Sunday, December 19, 2021 – 01:00 PM EST at Hard Rock Stadium
Jets Freefall Continues
The Jets offense went MIA again in a lopsided 30-9 loss to the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. Rookie Zach Wilson’s struggles in his first NFL season continue as he went 19 of 42 for 202 yards and zero touchdowns with no interceptions and finished with a subpar 59.8% passer rating.
On the heels of the loss, the Jets slipped to a 3-10 record on the season, which was enough to officially rule out Robert Saleh’s side from the playoffs. It’s now been 11 years since the Gang Green has been into the postseason.
It wasn’t all down to Wilson, but his tragic effort played a part in the Jets’ disappointing turnout in front of fans at MetLife Stadium. The Saints outgained the Jets 344-256 while Taysom Hill, Alvin Kamara, and the Saints run game ran riot over the Jets defense. The only player on the Jets squad that had a semi-redeemable day was the kicker. Eddy Piñeiro connected on all three tries and accounted for all 9 of the Jets’ points.
Overall, the Jets are 3-10-0 SU and ATS with a 13.2 losing margin on average and a 6.6 differential versus the spread. The Jets are scoring an average of 17.4 points per game and conceding 30.5 points per game.
With underwhelming stats such as these and poor form to boot, it’s no wonder the best sportsbooks stack the odds against the Jets.
Dolphins Win Five in a Row
Although Miami is coming off a well-deserved bye week, before the Dolphins put their feet up last week, they’d put together a five-game winning streak. A run of form that seemingly came out of nowhere, but nevertheless puts them in the same category as the Patriots and the Chiefs – both of which feature two of the league’s best winning streaks: a seven-game and six-game winning streak, respectively.
It’s worth noting that the four of the five teams the Dolphins beat represent some of the worst teams this season and the Jets were amongst them. The Dolphins also beat the Houston Texans, Carolina Panthers, and New York Giants. The only playoff contender the Dolphins bested was the Baltimore Ravens, although John Harbaugh’s side has been struggling on form during the second half of the season.
Most recently, the Dolphins beat the Giants 20-9 to come through as the firm 6.5-point home favorites for NFL picks against the spread. By the stats, the Dolphins are exactly putting up dizzying numbers, but they’re playing balanced football and that seems to be working well.
Miami is 6-7-0 SU and 7-5-1 ATS with a 2.6 losing margin on average and a -0.3 differential versus the spread. The Dolphins are scoring an average of 19.53 points per game and conceding 22.2 points per game. They beat the Jets last month 24-17 to cover as the closing 3.5-point road favorites across multiple sports betting platforms.
NFL Predictions and Picks
The Jets are suffering another losing season and their elimination at the weekend from the postseason was to be expected. The Jets got absolutely manhandled by the Saints in the 30-9 loss. They closed as the 4.5-point home underdogs but the game wasn’t even that close. The Jets offense is a yawn, but the defense is absolutely horrendous. On the season, the Jets are conceding 30.5 points, which is the worst in the league.
Normally, an 8.5-point spread requires some careful consideration and thought in order to decide which side of the coin to wager. In this case, there’s very little to size up between these two teams. The Jets aren’t competitive at all. That should give the Dolphins a relatively straightforward and easy home win and cover as the considerable home chalk. Colour the world shocked if the Dolphins don’t come through on these expectations.
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.