- Jeff Gold, ESPN Insider
Considering that just about everyone who bets the NFL had a rough Week 1 (take the Hilton SuperContest for example, where the field picked an unsightly 37.2 percent, including 0-4-1 on the five most popular plays), you're probably itching to have a clean slate for Week 2.
Tonight, we have one of the best "rivalries" in the NFL. The word is in quotes because, as we know, the Patriots tend to beat up on the Jets -- and it can't really be a rivalry unless there's some semblance of a back-and-forth, other than just verbal sparring.
To be fair, the Rex Ryan-led Jets did momentarily erase the Patriots' dominance in his first two years as coach, holding serve at home in the 2009 and 2010 regular seasons and pulling off a surprising upset in the 2010 playoffs. However, the Patriots have won the past four meetings and continued their AFC East dominance.
Both teams come into the game with significant injuries. The Patriots, a roughly 12-point favorite, depending on the book, will be without three of their top offensive weapons in Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola and Shane Vereen. Gronkowski is still recovering from multiple offseason surgeries. Amendola and Vereen were both injured Sunday.
Perhaps at some point we'll see a drop-off in the Patriots' ability to score seemingly at will (in the regular season) when they are missing so many players. But until proved otherwise, it seems like Tom Brady and teammates are an offensive machine.
The Jets will be missing starting wide receiver Jeremy Kerley and, depending on perspective, starting quarterback Mark Sanchez. Note that the Jets have still not decided who won their training camp competition, so maybe they aren't missing their starter. It's a secret.
According to ESPN PickCenter, the public is backing the Jets at a 54.9 percent clip. Let's get some line analysis from bookmaker Jay Kornegay of the Las Vegas Hotel and ATS picks from our panel of handicapping experts.
Spread: Opened at New England -11.5; still -11.5
Total: Opened at 43.5; still 43.5
Jeff Gold previews the New York Jets-New England Patriots game and four wiseguys give against-the-spread picks on the matchup.