Buffalo Bills (7-8; 6-9 ATS; 12-3 O/U) vs. New York Jets (4-11; 5-10 ATS; 7-7 O/U)
NFL: Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 1:00pm EST
Line: Buffalo -6
The New York Jets will close out their season in a matchup against the Buffalo Bills Sunday afternoon from MetLife Stadium. The Bills are coming off a 34-31 overtime loss to the Dolphins, and the Jets were pummelled 41-3 by the Patriots last week. The Jets beat the Bills 37-31 in Buffalo back in week two. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for 374 yards with one touchdown, and Tyrod Taylor recorded 297 passing yards with three touchdowns and one interception in the loss.
Bills Rally to Force OT but Fall to Dolphins
The Buffalo Bills rallied from a 14 point deficit to force overtime but could not get the job done in a 34-31 OT loss to the Dolphins last week. Tyrod Taylor was terrific, accumulating a season-high 329 passing yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions. The mobile quarterback had a decent season, throwing for 3023 yards with a 17:6 TD to INT ratio, and also rushed for six touchdowns. Sammy Watkins was outstanding in the loss, making seven catches for a season-high 154 yards. Unfortunately for the Bills, Watkins was injured and has only played seven games, collecting 399 receiving yards with two touchdowns. LeSean McCoy also had one of his best performances of the season, rushing for 128 yards and a touchdown. The 28-year old running back is having a terrific season, racking up 1257 rushing yards, ranking him fourth in the NFL. The Bills were officially eliminated from the Playoffs with the loss. They were looking good sitting at 4-2 after six games but proceeded to lose three straight games. Buffalo is scoring an average of 25.9 points per game, ranking them seventh in the NFL.
The Bills defense has struggled to stop the run all season and that was the case in the loss last week as they could not stop Jay Ajayi in the loss to Miami, surrendering 206 rushing yards. Buffalo has had success defending the pass, and are now conceding an average of 23.2 points per game, placing them 15th in the NFL.
Jets Blown Out Again
The New York Jets were on wrong end of several blowouts this season with their latest contest a 41-3 pounding from the Patriots. Bryce Petty got the start at quarterback but was injured early after an injury to his shoulder opening the door for Ryan Fitzpatrick who once against struggled, going 8 for 21 with zero touchdowns and two interceptions. It has been an abysmal season for the 34-year old quarterback, throwing for 2500 yards with a weak 10:17 TD to INT ratio, which included an awful stretch earlier this season where he tossed nine picks in two games. Petty is currently questionable for this contest. Bilal Powell played well again in the loss, rushing for 60 yards off 15 carries. The 28-year old running back has been a bright spot over the last few weeks taking over for Matt Forte, and has now tallied 600 rushing yards on the season, and is averaging a solid 5.7 yards per carry. Quincy Enunwa has been another bright spot in an otherwise terrible season, collecting 776 receiving yards after taking in 315 receiving yards last season. The Jets came into the season with high hopes which faded rather quickly this season. New York is scoring an average of 16.3 points per game, ranking them 30th in the NFL.
The Jets defense struggled in the loss to the Patriots, surrounding five touchdowns, and allowed New England to go 11 for 18 on third downs. New York’s defense was a big let down this season after coming in with high hopes, and are now conceding an average of 26.6 points per game, placing them down at 29th overall.
The Buffalo Bills are:
- 7-2-1 ATS last 10 on fieldtuf.
- 7-3 ATS last 10 on the road in series.
The New York Jets are:
- 1-4 ATS last 5 vs. AFC.
- 1-5 ATS last 6 in series.
I am siding with the Bills in this contest, despite the fact that Rex Ryan was fired Monday. The Jets appeared to have checked out for the season with sloppy play on both sides of the ball. New York is allowing an average of 33 points per game over their last four games, and the Bills offense has been hot so they should light up the scoreboard. The Bills own the number one ranked running game, and the Jets have a mediocre rush defense, so McCoy should do big damage on the ground. The Bills have had success stopping the pass, and the Jets running game hasn’t been anything special so I expect the Bills defense to have success stopping the Jets offense.
Pick: Buffalo Bills -6
The Bills number one ranked running game should be able to have another big day on the ground against the Jets struggling defense. New York has allowed 34 or more points in three out of their four games, and the over is 5-1 in their last 6 games against a team with a losing record, so Buffalo should have no problem scoring points. The Jets running game has played well even with Matt Forte out, so they should move the ball on the ground and I expect them to be able to score some points as well, plus the over is 5-1 in the last six meetings between these clubs in New York.