When betting on the NFL it is all about value. The NFL lines for week one were released early enough for sharp sports bettors to scramble to take advantage of the lines that they believed were out of whack. For me, one of those lines can be found in the week one matchup between the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets. Another game to be considered is the Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants, but for now the focus will be on the first game for Rex Ryan and the New York Jets. (A quick look at all lines, preview, and picks for week one)
The Jets were tagged as four point favorites when the line was opened and it can still be found at several online books with that original number. In my estimation the line is way off and according to my numbers the line should be closer to Jets (-1). The Jets preview gives more examples of how this team will struggle in 2012, but it all starts in game one.
The Jets will have a tough start to the regular season.
They start the season with a new look on offense as newly acquired quarterback Tim Tebow will see some reps in different sets. This change has caused enough confusion to prompt left guard Matt Slauson to say that both offenses look like “two different teams.”
To make matters worse the Jets will be showcasing a new defense. Head coach Rex Ryan and defensive coordinator Mike Pettine are implementing a new 4-3 defense for this season. In the long run this move could benefit the Jets, but it will be difficult to start the season. This move will put several players into different positions and roles that they will have to adjust to.
The Bills made a big splash in the free agent market by signing Mario Williams to anchor their defense. Kyle Williams is back from injury and the Bills will be formidable up front. On offense the Bills will be able to put up some points.
Ryan Fitzpatrick is coming in to his own as a worthy quarterback in the NFL and he has a wide array of weaponry to turn to. Stevie Johns on is back at wide receiver and the Bills have a stable of solid backs led by the always underrated Fred Jackson. It may be a surprising stat, but Jackson has forced more missed tackles than any other back in the league.
The Bills start fast out of the gate a year ago winning three straight and they will display that same urgency this year. The Bills enter this game with double revenge from two losses a year ago and a better grasp on both sides of the ball. That is a recipe for a close game and therefore taking the points is the way to go, in fact I would not be surprised if the Jets lose outright in the first game of the season.
Other NFL Week One Picks and Predictions: