Jets-Bears Betting Preview: Will Windy Weather Derail Sam Darnold Again?
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14).
Betting odds: New York Jets at Chicago Bears
- Spread: Bears -8
- Over/Under: 45
- Time: 1 p.m. ET
- TV channel: CBS
>> All odds as of Friday morning. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NFL odds and track your bets
Betting market: While 75% of spread tickets are taking Chicago, only 57% of dollars wagered are on the Bears. The lopsided public support pushed the Bears to eight-point favorites on Thursday (find live data here). — PJ Walsh
Weather report: Keep close tabs on the weather forecast in this one. As of Friday morning, swirling breezes of 14 mph are expected at kickoff.
Trends to know: The Jets were blown out by 20 points by the Vikings at home in their previous game.
Since 2003, teams that lose by 20 points or more in their previous game and are listed as an underdog of a field goal or more in their next game are 112-82-3 against the spread (57.7%), including 6-0 ATS already this season. — Evan Abrams
Sam Darnold will be the 12th rookie quarterback to start in Soldier Field in the past 20 seasons. The previous 11 are 3-8 straight up and just 5-6 against the spread. Only four of them closed as a dog of a touchdown or more (Bruce Gradkowski, Matthew Stafford, Cam Newton and Andrew Luck), and those teams went 0-4 SU and 2-2 ATS. — Abrams
Did you know? The Bears defense ranks No. 1 overall in defensive DVOA according to Football Outsiders. Sam Darnold completed only 17-of-42 passes last week for 206 yards and three interceptions against the Vikings’ defense, which ranks 16th in that metric. — John Ewing
Which team is healthier? Bears
The Bears will have to deal with Allen Robinson (groin) and Khalil Mack (ankle) at less than 100%, but they’re each expected to once again suit up Sunday.
The Jets are much worse off. The secondary could again be without three starters in cornerback Trumaine Johnson (quad), slot corner Buster Skrine (concussion) and safety Marcus Maye (hand), while wide receiver Robby Anderson (ankle) could join running back Bilal Powell (neck, injured reserve) and wide receiver Quincy Enunwa (ankle, out) on the sideline.
Biggest mismatch: Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky vs. Jets backup defensive backs
The Jets rank first in pass defense with an 86.0 PFF coverage grade, but as Ian mentioned, they could be missing three starting defensive backs.
Additionally, top outside cornerback Morris Claiborne (shoulder, foot) missed practice on Wednesday and is uncertain to play. Replacing Johnson, Skrine and Maye are backups Darryl Roberts, Parry Nickerson and Terrence Brooks.
Roberts is a third-year seventh rounder giving up a 69.7% completion rate in his coverage this season. Nickerson is a rookie sixth rounder with a 78.1% completion rate allowed. He’s been targeted 21 times over the past two weeks as a starter.
And Brooks is a special teams player who’s seen just 166 coverage snaps with three teams over the past four years. Trubisky and the Bears passing attack should be able to exploit these players relentlessly. — Matthew Freedman
DFS edge: The Bears’ 3.0 projected sacks in our FantasyLabs Player Models trails only the Steelers’ projection for Week 8’s main slate. Provided Mack (ankle) is healthy, there’s no reason to think that the Bears will fail here against a Jets team that is implied for 19 points.
Darnold has struggled under pressure this season, averaging only 5.4 yards per attempt with a 7.3% interception rate, the seventh-highest mark in the league. However, given the Bears’ high price tag, they’re better plays in tournaments. — Justin Bailey
Bet to watch: Under 45
Darnold gets his first experience of playing at Soldier Field on Sunday, and it is expected to be a windy day in the Windy City.
In three of Darnold’s started starts, wind was a significant factor. And New York managed just 15.3 ppg with Darnold posting two touchdowns, five interceptions and a 45.8% completion rate.
If I were to bet the over, I would be forced to root for the Jets to score their share of the total and I am just not confident they can do that.
As detailed above, the Jets will be missing some key defenders, which should make Trubisky’s day a bit easier, but I do not see Chicago scoring 30-40 points like it did in Week 7.
Both the Jets and Bears have been stellar defensively this season. Both rank in the top 10 in DVOA, pass defense DVOA and short-pass DVOA, and are both in the top half of the league in rush defense DVOA and deep-pass DVOA.
The Jets enter this game having given up 30 or more points in consecutive games.
Under Todd Bowles, New York has allowed 30 or more points in consecutive games three times but give up only 18.3 ppg in their subsequent game. — Abrams
Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.