Joe Flacco’s 5.0 yards per attempt are last in the NFL among 38 quarterbacks with at least 50 pass attempts
After a hot start to the season, the Patriots haven’t looked good for a couple of weeks now, and they find themselves in uncharted waters at 2-5. After starting the season 2-1, they were lost without Cam Newton in Week 4, but Newton hasn’t returned as the same guy we saw to start the season since being activated off the reserve/COVID-19 list.
But Week 9 is a quintessential get right spot. New England played much better in Week 8 in a three-point loss at Buffalo, and the Jets are in absolute shambles. Sam Darnold is out again, so once again the Jets will look to Joe Flacco under center. Flacco has been terrible this year, averaging fewer yards per attempt than any other quarterback in the league that has thrown at least 50 passes. By way of comparison, his 5.0 rate is just behind the 5.1 mark Ben DiNucci has put up.
It's hard to envision Flacco and the Jets winning this game, or even being particularly competitive. And when the Patriots have led this year, they’ve gone extremely run-heavy, operating as the second-slowest offense in the NFL in terms of seconds per snap. Despite their losing record, they are one of just four NFL teams who have more total rush attempts than passes for the season, and in their two wins earlier this season they racked up 80 total rushes against just 37 passes.
The spread is just wide enough in this one that I'm wary in an expected low-scoring affair, but the very low game total is ripe for the picking. Return touchdowns or fluky long scores are always on the table, but without something like that I have a hard time seeing how this game gets to 40. The Jets are never a good bet to produce much offensively, but especially with Flacco under center, and the Patriots pounding the ball on the ground and grinding away clock with a lead is about as obvious as an NFL trend gets. The under feels like easy money.
NFL Expert Picks
Under 41.0 @ -104
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