The preseason online NFL betting odds predicted that the Miami Dolphins would finish last in the AFC East. Above the Dolphins were the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets who were dead even to take the 2nd spot in the division, behind the Patriots. While the odds predicted an even matchup, Week 2’s Thursday Night Football Action proved who the better team is.
Fans that tuned in for the first game of Week 2 were treated to one of the best contests of the 2016 season. The AFC East matchup between the Jets and the Bills proved to be a much better football game than previously anticipated. Buffalo is entering the 2nd season in the Rex Ryan era. Ryan was brought in to coach the Bills after the Jets decided they had had enough of Ryan’s nuisances. In his first year as Buffalo’s head coach Ryan was able to beat his former team the two times the Bills faced their AFC East rival. However, this time the Bills fell short and even though they were painted as equals by the online NFL betting odds, the Jets were able to pull one over their former coach.
The outcome of this matchup was decided by the two opposing quarterbacks. Tyrod Taylor did his best to keep the Bills in it, but there’s one particular pass he would have liked to have back. One of the Bills receivers had created separation in man-to-man coverage. Taylor saw him open and was going to hit him in stride, but just as the ball was going to come out Taylor saw the Jets’ safety playing deep. Anticipating that the safety would make a play on the ball Taylor underthrew the pass in an attempt to keep it safe. However, since the receiver had already created separation, the cornerback was trailing, and as it turns out, was in a perfect position to pick off the underthrown ball. The Jets defense made a key turnover and Ryan Fitzpatrick was able to turn it into points.
Taylor finished the day with a 112.8 passer rating, but was crippled by one inability; failure to convert on 3rd downs. The Jets finished with 28 first downs while the Bills were only able to get 16. This failure paved the way to a 37-31 New York victory proving that the Jets are more worthy of your online football bets than the Bills. The Bills will get a chance to take that mantle back against the Cardinals in Week 3.
Week 3 – Sunday September 25th
Cardinals -7 (-115) 46 ½ (-110)
Bills +7 (-110) 46 ½ (-110)
Although they lost their opening game to the New England Patriots, the Cardinals offense was still able to get the ball moving. Carson Palmer finished the day with 104.7 passer rating against New England. Now in Week 3 the Cards will face another AFC East opponent and will be eager to take their revenge against the division. The Cardinals should win this matchup, just like the online NFL betting odds predict, but if the Bills want to pull off an upset they have to focus on two things.
Getting first downs and making sure Taylor stays upright. In their TNF matchup the Jets were only able to convert 3/10 3rd downs. The Bills may not have given up any sacks against the Jets, but Taylor was knocked down more than a few times. One hit was so intense that officials forced the quarterback to come off the field and be evaluated for a concussion. While Taylor’s competitive nature wanted him to stay on the field, and it was refreshing to see the officials step up and comply with their duty to protect the athletes. Sentiments aside, the Cardinals are a playoff team and the Bills will likely lose another and fall to 0-3 for the season.