The New York Jets, needing to sweep its final three games to have any chance at the playoffs, travel to Tennessee tonight in what may be the least appealing matchup in Monday Night Football history. Both teams are decimated by injuries: the Titans with their offensive line and the Jets are hurting at the skill positions.
Tennessee has lost three in a row, including a tough loss on the road in Indianapolis last weekend. New York, in contrast, has won four of its last five to give itself a long-shot chance at making the playoffs. Ignore the fact the last two wins have come against laughingstocks Arizona and Jacksonville; a win is a win is a win in the NFL. Style points don’t matter.
The game opened with Tennessee as 2.5 favorites. Early money came in on the Titans, pushing the line up to -3 at one point in the week. Jets money dropped that line down to two where it has since settled. The total is 42, with the weather expected to be a comfortable 55 degrees at kickoff.
Both New York and Tennessee enter the game with struggling offenses, especially at quarterback. Mark Sanchez has thrown 15 interceptions and lost nine fumbles for the Jets, while Jake Locker has been picked off nine times and lost five fumbles. Both teams will try to run the ball. Chris Johnson remains the Titans main weapon, but he is a shadow of his old self this season. Johnson has run for 100 yards or more just four times this year. He’ll be facing a Jets defense that has allowed 136 yards per game this year, good for 29th in the NFL.
The Titans haven’t been much better, allowing 127 rushing ypg, 24th in the league. Shonn Green and Bilal Powell will be the primary ball carriers for New York; the duo combined for 155 yards rushing last week in Jacksonville.
Expect a dull, low-scoring game tonight. The Jets threw the ball just 19 times last week against the 31st ranked defense last week; a similar game plan is most likely tonight. Tennessee should follow the same routine, content to let Chris Johnson carry the load.
Neither team deserves a bettor’s money. A gambler needs a rooting interest, however, especially in a dog game like this. Pick of the Day: Under 42.