The 2022 NFL season is months away from its first kick-off but the New York Jets are already leading the league in an atypical category.
According to beat reporter Brian Costello of the New York Post, “the Jets have been the most popular ‘Over’ bet at [Caesars Sportsbook].”
He continued: “Their win total of 5.5 is getting a lot of action. It is the most popular bet by both tickets and dollars wagered at Caesars. The Jets have 43 percent more tickets on their Over than the next closest team.”
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Optimism Is High — but Not Just From Jets Fans
If you’re a diehard Jets fan, you probably know that this is the time of year most NYJ supporters generally hype themselves up and raise expectations for the upcoming season. Most times, this doesn’t turn out very well in the long run.
Jets fans are optimistic as ever right now but there’s a notable difference from the average offseason, the NFL community is buying in too. That’s not the norm, but it is a welcomed change for this franchise.
Jets X-Factor’s Michael Nania described this strange feeling for fans: “It is a really, *really* new/different experience to see how much national love the Jets have been getting. I’ve never seen anything close to this in my time following the team.”
The catalyst has been the NFL draft. The Jets didn’t just do well, they shattered analysts’ best-case scenarios with three first-round selections that were considered top-10 talents to some. Then general manager Joe Douglas added the top running back in the class in round two, along with a top two or three tight end in Jeremy Ruckert.
If you factor in a second year of development for Zach Wilson, Elijah Moore, and a promising 2021 draft class — not to mention a coaching staff that embarked on a massive scheme transition a year ago — it’s not surprising that the Jets have become a popular dark horse bet.
Just look at the recent headlines from NFL analysts:
- Ex-NFL quarterback Dan Orlovsky compared Wilson’s year two setup to that of Patrick Mahomes before his MVP campaign.
- Ex-Jets and Ravens linebacker Bart Scott proclaimed that the Jets roster is “twice as good” as the New England Patriots.
- Draft experts Daniel Jeremiah and Dane Brugler ranked Gang Green as the number one class in 2022.
- Jets youngsters like Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson are popular predictions for Offensive Rookie of the Year.
The only ones doubting the franchise right now are the oddsmakers, at a 5.5 over/under win total. As Costello noted, gamblers are currently smashing the over and fans can only hope that the offseason perception turns into reality for once.
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Costello Leaks First 2 Games for Jets
If all these ‘over’ bets are going to cash, the Jets will have to win six games during a schedule that appears to be challenging on paper. The opponents are well-known by now, but the first two official dates were leaked by Costello on May 12.
“Zach Wilson’s second season with the Jets won’t get off to an easy start,” wrote the beat reporter. “The Jets will open the 2022 NFL season against the [Baltimore] Ravens at MetLife Stadium, according to sources.”
Assuming this report is legitimate, ex-NFL MVP Lamar Jackson will come to town in Week 1 — a tough way to start the season for Robert Saleh’s young and hungry group. An upset win would give this franchise all the confidence in the world, but a blowout loss could cause some early-season doubt.
Later, Costello announced the lone primetime game of the 2022 schedule, a Thursday Night Football matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars on December 22, just before Christmas weekend.
This should translate to Week 16 of the upcoming campaign, as Trevor Lawrence comes to MetLife for round two of the Wilson-Lawrence debate. The Jets defeated the Jaguars on the road in 2021.
Many anticipated the initial battle between the quarterback prospects to be a primetime affair a year ago, and it appears the NFL has listened this time around. The rest of the Jets’ schedule will drop at 8 p.m. EST tonight, if not sooner. Stay tuned.