The Buffalo Bills’ offense looked anemic in a season-opening loss and is in need of a jolt as the club hosts coach Rex Ryan’s former team in the AFC East-rival New York Jets on Thursday night. Buffalo recorded just 11 first downs, 48 plays behind center and 160 yards of total offense in a 13-7 setback to Baltimore on Sunday.
“Tape doesn’t lie,” Ryan told the New York Post on Monday. “We really struggled and we clearly have to get better in a hurry … and, oh by the way, we’re playing against even a better defense (in the Jets).” While New York’s aggressive front recorded seven sacks in its 23-22 season-opening loss to Cincinnati, veteran cornerback Darrelle Revis granted A.J. Green a cushy stay on Revis Island and could receive the call to shadow Sammy Watkins. The third-year wideout, who insisted to ESPN that he’ll “definitely play” on Thursday despite nursing a sore left foot, reeled in 11 receptions for 136 yards as the Bills posted a 22-17 victory over the Jets in January for their fifth straight win in the series. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw three fourth-quarter interceptions versus his former team as New York was derailed in its bid to clinch its first playoff berth since 2010.
TV: 8:25 p.m. ET, CBS, NFL Network.
LINE HISTORY: The Bills opened this game favored by a field goal at home, but since then bettors and injury concerns has caused the line to jump the fence to Jets -1.
As for the total, it has come down a fair amount since opening at 42.5 with the current total sitting at 40. Check out the complete line history here.
COVERS POWER RANKINGS: Jets (-1) – Bills (+1.5) + home field (-3) = Bills +0.5
Jets – WR Q. Enuwa (probable Thursday, ribs), LB B. Carter (questionable Thursday, shoulder), S C. Pryor (questionable Thursday, undisclosed), DE M. Wilkerson (questionable Thursday, toe), TE K. Davis (questionable Thursday, ribs), LB D. Harris (questionable Thursday, shoulder), CB D. Roberts (doubtful Thursday, foot), DL J. Jenkins (doubtful Thursday, calf).
Bills – WR S. Watkins (questionable Thursday, foot), RB J. Williams (questionable Thursday, ribs), CB K. Seymour (questionable Thursday, hamstring), WR W. Powell (questinable Thursday, undisclosed), Qb C. Jones (questionable Sunday, shoulder), TE J. Dray (questionable Thursday, ankle), DT J. Worthy (questionable Thursday, knee), TE C. Clay (questionable Thursday, knee), T C. Glenn (out Thursday, ankle), S C. Anderson (out Thursday, foot).
WEATHER REPORT: It should be a beautiful night for football at Orchard Park. The forecast calls for clear skies with temperatures in the low 60’s during the game. There could be a six to seven mil per hour wind gusting from east to west, towards the northwestern endzzone.
WHAT BOOKS SAY: “On Monday morning we were sitting at Bills -2.5, but were taking all Jets action at that number (over 90 percent) forcing us to go move all the way to the Jets -1, where we were still seeing over 80 percent of the action on the Jets. We are now Jets -1.5 with just under 85 percent of the action on the Jets We have also moved the total down from 42.5 to 40.5 where we are seeing just under 75 percent on the Over.” – Michael Stewart of CarbonsSports.ag.
WHAT SHARPS SAY: “For the second consecutive season the Bills and Jets meet on a Thursday night. Both teams are coming off shaky week one performances. Buffalo’s simplistic road game plan at Baltimore back-fired as penalties ruined their chances. Meanwhile, the Jets could not avoid big mistakes on their home field against the powerful Bengals.”
“With a short week in a division game Vegas has this setup with a common resulting number of one-point in the Jets favor (four games decided by a point week one).” – Covers Expert Zack Cimini.
ABOUT THE JETS (0-1, 0-1 ATS, 1-0 O/U): New York’s offense received mixed reviews in the opener as versatile veteran Matt Forte (96 rushing, 59 receiving) amassed 155 yards from scrimmage in his debut, but former Chicago Bears teammate Brandon Marshall was limited to just three catches and committed a costly drop in the fourth quarter. The 32-year-old Marshall downplayed any residual issues with an ailing hip and looks to get back on track versus Buffalo, against which he has reeled in a touchdown pass in each of his last four meetings. Leonard Williams recorded 2 1/2 sacks in the opener, fellow defensive tackle Steve McLendon added two and defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson had 1 1/2 for the Jets, who will see Sheldon Richardson make his 2016 debut after serving a one-game suspension for violating the personal-conduct policy.
ABOUT THE BILLS (0-1, 0-1 ATS, 0-1 O/U): Ryan dismissed the possibility of shutting down Watkins after the New York Daily News reported that the move could be done as a precaution following the wideout’s admission that his surgically repaired foot was sore. Watkins had four catches for a team-high 43 yards against the Ravens, but Tyrod Taylor only connected on 15 of 22 tosses for 111 yards in the game. LeSean McCoy, who recorded his 60th career touchdown in the opener, gashed the Jets for 112 yards rushing and five catches for 47 yards receiving in Buffalo’s 22-17 win on Nov. 12.
* Jets are 0-5 ATS in their last five games in Buffalo.
* Bills finished last season 4-0 ATS in their final four home games.
* Under is 5-1 in the Bills’ last six Thursday games.
* Under is 4-1 in the last five games in Buffalo.
COVERS CONSENSUS: The public is backing the shot road fave in this spot, with 60 percent of wagers backing the Jets. As for the total, 56 percent of wagers are on the Under.