Jaguars vs. Jets: Expect Defenses To Rule The Day & Pick Under

N.Y. Jets

Tuesday, August 9, 2016 5:52 PM GMT

Another primetime matchup on the first night of the NFL Preseason is the Jaguars heading into the Meadowlands to play the Jets. While the starters won’t be playing long, if at all, we can still get come NFL Odds value from this game. 

Jacksonville Jaguars vs N.Y. Jets

First week of the preseason
There are some interesting trends from past first weeks of the preseason that we can use to help us handicap this game. Right now the NFL Odds makers have the Jets as -2 ½ favorites with a total of 36 ½, which is your typical preseason odds.

Last season, Todd Bowles started his first season as the Jets head coach and he had a solid preseason. He went 3-1, but he did lose his first preseason game of the season. However, back then the Jets thought Geno Smith was going to be their starter before he got punched in the face, so now with Ryan Fitzpatrick freshly signed, even though he might not get into the game, the Jets at least know who their starter will be going into the season.

The Jets, however, have a lot of quarterbacks they will want to get reps over the course of the preseason. Fitzpatrick may play some in the first preseason game, but the bulk of the quarterback play will be the coaches trying to decide on a backup. Bryce Petty and Smith will likely get most of the second and third team reps and both QBs look like solid bets to take the Jets' second and third string offenses down the field.

With that in mind, the Jets may be a pretty good play here in the first day of the preseason. However, a better play may be in the total. While it is only 361/2, there have been some nice preseason trends established over the last few seasons that look like they could help us cash a winning ticket with this game.

The Sharp Pick
For starters, the first Thursday of Week 1 in the preseason has always been a great bet on the under. Since 2012, the under is 14-9-1 on the first Thursday of the preseason and it has been even better lately. Over the last two years, the under is 9-3 on the Thursday of preseason.

For the Jaguars, after Blake Bortles is done with his few series under center on Thursday, Chad Henne, and Brandon Allen will be in the game. Henne is a veteran with a ton of experience and he has shown he can dominate second strings. However, he might not be in the game that long either. Allen could play most if not all of the second half.

The Jags' sixth round pick this past season will undoubtedly make some mistakes and probably not lead to much offense in his first NFL game and that is why the under looks like a solid bet here on Thursday. With all of the unders cashing on the first day of the preseason over the last few years, and with backup quarterbacks who don't bring too much to the table, I expect the defenses to rule the day. Add the under to your NFL Picks for Thursday's preseason battle between the Jets and Jags with NFL odds set at 36.5.

Free NFL Pick: UNDER 36½ -102
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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