This isn’t the time for the Jets to play the Buffalo Bills.
The Jets will travel north to Buffalo to meet the Bills Sunday in the regular-season finale. The kickoff is scheduled for 4:25 p.m. ET.
New York (4-12 SU, 6-10 ATS) will have pride on the line after nearly upsetting Tampa Bay last week, while Buffalo (10-6 SU, 8-6-2 ATS) can clinch the AFC East title with a win. The Bills also want to gain more momentum for the postseason, and they currently have a three-game winning streak.
Yet, if the Jets don’t come out flat, they easily can play the role of a spoiler. They were three-for-four in the red zone against Tampa Bay last week in a 28-24 loss.
The Bills are heavy favorites on Sunday, with most sportsbooks listing them as 16- or 16.5-point favorites. The total is set at 40 or 40.5 points.
Perhaps the best part of Sunday’s game, is that New York residents will be able to place legal wagers on the game from the comforts of their own homes and claim bonus offers as New York launched mobile sports betting on Saturday.
Bills’ head coach Sean McDermott said he wants to build momentum and that his team needs to be focused.
“I think that’s the way you want it, it doesn’t always go like that, but the teams that I’ve been around that have been the good ones, they play their best this time of year,” McDermott said. “It’s certainly necessary to have that. And again, I’ve been happy with that. I think we’ve got more room to grow there as well. I just think we got to continue to embrace the growth mindset and stay humble yet confident in our approach.”
Jets Offense Is Improving
Jets rookie QB Zach Wilson has finally found his niche over the past five games, as he has thrown four touchdowns with one interception and has rushed for 136 yards.
Last week, Wilson was 19-for-33 for 234 yards with a touchdown. He has raised his numbers to 2,247 passing yards with eight touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
Rookie RB Michael Carter left last week’s game early with a possible concussion after gaining 54 yards on three carries, but he returned to practice Thursday. He ran for 118 yards two weeks ago and needs 55 yards on Sunday to hit the 1,000-yard mark.
Still, the Jets rushed for 150 yards as a team, which is a great sign.
Wide receiver/return specialist and upcoming free agent Braxton Berrios, who has played like an All-Pro, won’t play because of a thigh injury. The Jets will get fellow receiver Jamison Crowder back in the lineup. Rookie receiver Elijah Moore could return from injury, but it will be a game-time decision. New York’s offense is ranked 21st overall, 24th in rushing, 17th in passing, and 25th in scoring.
The numbers for the Jets’ defense don’t look good. The team already has allowed a franchise-record 477 points this season. Middle linebacker C.J. Mosley is fifth in the league in tackles with a career-high 155 stops.
Bills’ Offense Is Formidable
Buffalo’s offense will enter the game averaging 28.5 points (third in the league) and 379.3 total yards (fifth) per game. The Jets are allowing 29.8 points (32nd) and 396 total yards (32nd) per game.
When they first met in mid-November, the Bills trounced the Jets, 45-17, behind QB Josh Allen’s 21-for-28,366-yard, two-touchdown performance. WR Stefon Diggs chewed up the Jets’ secondary for 162 yards on eight catches.
The game marked the end of the (Jets backup QB) Mike White phenomenon, as he threw four interceptions. Wilson didn’t play due to his shoulder injury.
Allen has 4,161 passing yards with 34 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Diggs had 94 receptions for 1,144 yards with nine scores. WR Cole Beasley has 78 catches for 662 yards with a touchdown, but he was placed on the COVID-19 list Tuesday.
Allen also has reliable weapons in WR Emmanuel Sanders (42-628-4 touchdowns) and TE Dawson Knox (46-538-9 touchdowns).
RB Devon Singletary has improved his numbers lately, and he has 792 yards for the season. The Jets are allowing an average of 136 yards per game, the fourth-worst in the league.
The Bills’ offense is ranked fifth overall, sixth in rushing, 10th in passing, and sixth in scoring.
With a seemingly insurmountable task on paper, Jets head coach Robert Saleh is confident.
“It’s going to be everything you dream of as a kid in terms of going into a stadium and it just being as live and as juiced up as it’s going to be, and we’re going to get their absolute best shot,” Saleh said. “We got to give it right back to them. We got to make them earn it.”
Jets Vs. Bills Betting Recommendations
On a clear, late Sunday afternoon in Buffalo, Wilson seemingly would have a legitimate shot, but weather can be a factor here.
New York needs to get an early jump, and can’t afford to fall behind early. The Jets once again must show that they can play with playoff teams as they did with Tampa Bay when they had a 24-10 lead at one point.
Buffalo should be energized for this one, and the Bills don’t want to allow New England to claim the top spot in the division. Buffalo has a turnover margin of plus-8, while the Jets are minus-13. The Bills have won 12 of the last 18 meetings.
Point spread: Take the Bills -16.5
McDermott is one of the league’s better coaches, and his team could open with a flurry to take control. Buffalo is healthy, and New York cannot afford mistakes.
Total: Take over 40
This could be a tight margin, but Allen will open it up and the Bills’ defense could get into the act as it did in the previous matchup. If the Jets get Moore back, they could stay close.
Jets Vs. Bills Player Props
Josh Allen Over 248.5 passing yards (-115 at DraftKings)
Josh Allen Scores first-half touchdown (+650 at FanDuel)
Zach Wilson Under 180.5 passing yards (-115 at DraftKings)
This game has all the signs pointing to a Bills’ blowout despite the Jets’ latest surge. The Jets’ defense will have trouble slowing Allen, and Wilson will be harassed by the Bills’ defense.