The New York Jets travel halfway across the country to try for their first win of the season on Sunday against the Indianapolis Colts. The Jets have lost their first two games of the season by a combined score of 58-30, including a 31-13 whitewashing at the hands of the San Francisco 49ers last Sunday. The Colts, on the other hand, won fairly handily over the Minnesota Vikings last week by a score of 28-11. The Jets are 0-2 against the spread this season, while the total has gone over in each game. The Colts are 1-1 against the spread, while the over-under is also 1-1.
The line for this one has been one of the biggest of the week. After originally opening as seven-point favorites, the Colts have seen that balloon as they now are favored by 11.5 points in this contest. 54 percent of the bets against the spread back the Colts giving double-digit points.
The total for this one has slipped down slightly. After opening at 45 points, it now sits at 43.5 or 44 points depending on the sportsbook. 55 percent of the bets on the total are on the under for this contest.
Game-time Weather: Lucas Oil Stadium is a retractable dome.
Jets looking for signs of lifeThe New York Jets, who went 7-9 last season, are going to be hard-pressed to even approach that number this season. There are not too many easy games on the Jets schedule this season, but even if there were, they wouldn’t be easy wins for the Jets, the way they are playing right now. The Jets have scored just 30 points in two games with a quarterback (Sam Darnold) who is averaging under 200 passing yards per game and a leading rusher (Frank Gore) that has a total of 87 yards rushing.
The injury Gods have not been kind to the Jets in the early going. First, their top running back Le’Veon Bell was placed on IR, and then their top wide receiver Jamison Crowder, who had 115 yards receiving in the first game, sat out the game with the 49ers with a hamstring injury. He is listed as questionable for the Colts game on Sunday. Five other players are listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, including wide receivers Breshad Perriman (ankle) and Chris Hogan (ribs). That means that four of the Jets top six pass catchers so far this season are either out or questionable for the game versus Indianapolis.
In their game versus the 49ers, Darnold completed 21 of his 32 passing attempts for 179 yards and a touchdown, while Gore run for 63 yards on 21 carries. Hogan was the leading receiver, catching six passes for 75 yards, while Braxton Berrios caught six passes for 59 yards and a touchdown. New York did not turn the ball over in the game. Defensively, Quinnen Williams had seven tackles, four for losses, and two sacks, while Brian Poole and Neville Hewitt had six solo tackles apiece. Pierre Desir had the only interception of the game. The Jets gave up 182 yards rushing in the game.
“We did not play the game we needed to play," coach Adam Gase said on espn.com.
For the season, Darnold has completed 62.7% of his passes for 394 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. Backup Joe Flacco is listed as questionable for the game with a neck injury. Their top two healthy pass catchers are Berrios, who has six catches for 59 yards and tight end Chris Herndon, who has seven catches for 42 yards. Frank Gore0 leads the team in tackles with 17, including two sacks and a forced fumble.
OUT: RB Le'Veon Bell, WR Braxton Berrios, CB Kyron Brown, LB Blake Cashman, T Cameron Clark, WR Jamison Crowder, S Ashtyn Davis, WR Josh Doctson, T George Fant, QB Joe Flacco, OL Leo Koloamatangi, CB Arthur Maulet, WR Denzel Mims, LB C.J. Mosley, LB Patrick Onwuasor, WR Breshad Perriman, WR Jeff Smith, WR Vyncint Smith, CB Quincy Wilson, DL Jabari Zuniga
Questionable: CB Nate Hairston, OL Connor McGovern
Colts bounce back from week one loss to destroy VikingsAfter losing to division rival Jacksonville in week one, a game in which quarterback Philip Rivers made his Colts debut by throwing for 363 yards, Indianapolis used a much more balanced offensive attack to knock off the Minnesota Vikings by a score of 28-11. After falling behind 3-0 after one quarter, the Colts scored 28 unanswered points on two touchdowns, four field goals, and a safety. Rodrigo Blankenship was 4-4 on field goal attempts in the game. Rivers threw for just 214 yards, but the running game excelled.
The Colts nearly doubled their rushing output from the first game, rushing for 151 yards (compared to 88 in their week one loss). Jonathan Taylor, making his first NFL start, led the way with 101 yards on 26 carries and a touchdown.
“You're talking about his second game, no OTAs, zero preseason games and he was the workhorse today," Rivers said about Taylor on espn.com.. "Jonathan's going to be a heck of a player. He made some unbelievable cuts, unbelievable runs today where you can see the more experience he gets, he's going to make those cuts without any hesitation."
Mo Alie-Cox had five catches for 111 yards. The Colts held the ball for nearly two-thirds of the game (38:25-21:35). On the defensive side of the ball, Darius Leonard and Kenny Moore II both had six tackles, including five solo tackles apiece. The Colts had three interceptions in the game.
Indianapolis lost a couple key members of their team to injury in the game. Safety Malik Hooker (Achilles) and wide receiver Paris Campbell (knee) were both put on Injured Reserve after the game. Starting running back Marlon Mack was lost for the season in week one with a torn Achilles, but if Taylor runs the way he did against Minnesota, the loss will be minimal.
Rivers has completed 77.5% of his passes in the early going for 577 yards, which is the seventh-best total through two weeks, and two touchdowns, but he has also thrown three picks. Taylor has been the Colts main ball carrier in the first two games after Mack’s injury. He has rushed for 123 yards in the first two games, while Cox and T.Y. Hilton have both caught seven passes for 131 and 81 yards, respectively. Rivers has completed passes to 10 different receivers in the first two games. Leonard leads the defense with 16 tackles on the season, and 10 solo tackles. Indianapolis has seven sacks and three interceptions in the first two games.
OUT: LB Matthew Adams, RB Bruce Anderson III, TE Trey Burton, WR Parris Campbell, DT Sheldon Day, S Malik Hooker, RB Marlon Mack, S Rolan Milligan, LB Skai Moore, CB Marvell Tell III, DE Kemoko Turay, CB Rock Ya-Sin
Questionable: S Julian Blackmon, DT DeForest Buckner,
Trends found on oddsshark.com:
- The Jets are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games overall
- The Jets are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games played in September
- The Colts are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games played in week three
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Eleven points is a high number for an NFL point spread, but the New York Jets are just that bad. At full strength, New York would not have much of a chance versus the Colts, but with their top running back and three wide receivers either out or questionable for Sunday’s game, things do not look good for the Jets to get their first win (or even be competitive) in this game. The Jets have been outscored by an average of 14 points per game in their first two contests. New York gave up nearly 200 yards rushing to San Francisco last week, and Indianapolis has found a running game in the name of Jonathan Taylor. Philip Rivers needs some help, as evidenced by his 363 yards passing in a loss in week one. He can’t win games on his own anymore, but with a balanced game plan, he still has what it takes to be a winning quarterback. The Colts dominated the time of possession against the Vikings, so look for more of the same on Sunday as Indianapolis wins their second straight lopsided game.
Prediction: Indianapolis -11
Full-Game Total Pick
Both of the Jets first two games have gone over, mainly on the strength of their poor defensive efforts. They have given up 27 and 31 points in their first two games, while the Colts are coming off a 28-point effort against the Vikings. It could have been even worse, however, as Indianapolis had to settle for four field goals in the game. The Colts scored points on six of their 10 possessions against Minnesota, while their defense had three interceptions and a safety. With Rivers and Taylor packing a one-two punch like they did in week two, the Jets will not be able to stop the Colts. Indianapolis scores a lot of points in this game, so go with the over.
Prediction: Over 43.5