If you need another reason to cheer against the worst teams in the NFL, you can now get football odds on which team will score the fewest points in the league.
There's something special about cheering against really, really bad teams. We're a nation of NFL rubberneckers, taking pleasure in watching hapless quarterbacks cough up the football, or two defenders miss their assignments and crash into one another while the other team scores. All you need is “Yakety Sax” and you're in business.
Of course, the schadenfreude is even sweeter when you throw some NFL odds into the mix. Our fine friends at bet365 have added “Lowest Scoring Team (Regular Season)” to their list of NFL specials, and three teams are tied at +650: the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tennessee Titans and Oakland Raiders. Who'll win this race to the bottom?
The Spy Who Jagged Me
Before we bring out the crystal prolate spheroid, let's let the NFL odds do some of the work for us. You'll also find regular-season totals for points scored at bet365; each of the 32 teams has a range of totals on the board, and it's the Jaguars bringing up the rear.
Jacksonville: 241 points (UNDER +170)
Tennessee: 246 points (UNDER +180)
Oakland: 251 points (UNDER +170)
These are small differences, but enough to make us conclude that Jacksonville has more betting value at +650, all other things being equal. And given the on-field product we're expecting in 2015, we're even more inclined to put the Jags in our NFL picks.
Using 2014 as a baseline, the Jaguars were last in the league in scoring at 249 points, followed by the Raiders (253) and Titans (254). Good things happened to Oakland and Tennessee during the offseason. The Raiders drafted a stud wide receiver in Alabama's Amari Cooper, while the Titans grabbed Heisman Trophy-winning QB Marcus Mariota – although Mariota still has to sign his contract, let alone beat Zach Mettenberger for the starting gig.
Jacksonville? Not so much. Their top pick went toward a defensive player, DE Dante Fowler Jr., who tore his ACL and is out for the season. Former Broncos TE Julius Thomas (43 catches, 12 TDs) signed as a free agent, but WR Cecil Shorts III (53 catches, one TD) left for the Houston Texans. This is a very young offense that'll be guided by a new set of assistant offensive coaches under Gus Bradley. QB Blake Bortles will be working for his second offensive co-ordinator in two years, as Greg Olson replaces Jedd Fisch (now with the Michigan Wolverines).
Sound familiar? We saw what happened to QB Blaine Gabbert's development, or lack thereof, as he suffered through three different OCs during his three years in Jacksonville. Last year, Bortles was the worst passing QB in the league at –955 DYAR (Defense-adjusted Yards Above Replacement). Bortles should improve as a sophomore, just as Gabbert did, but we all know how that story turned out. Mmmmm... schadenfreude.
Free NFL Pick: Take Jacksonville +650 at Bet365