Reeling NY Jets Host Texans On Monday Night Football

By: Michael Robinson | Friday, October 5, 2012

The New York Jets may be the most maligned 2-2 team in NFL history. They host the Houston Texans on Monday Night Football as a solid underdog.

The Don Best Pro Odds opened the Jets +7 and it’s up to 8½-9. The total is a low 41½, and ESPN's Monday night crew will begin at 8:30 p.m. (ET) from MetLife Stadium.

The Jets (2-2 straight up and against the spread) are tied for the AFC East lead, but one would never know it by reading the local New York papers. Almost everyone feels they are doomed after losing star cornerback Darrelle Revis (knee) and receiver Santonio Holmes (foot) for the year in the last two weeks.

Coach Rex Ryan knows the injuries are a real blow, but hopes his team reached a low point in last Sunday’s 34-0 loss to San Fran as 3½-point home ‘dogs. The offense generated just 145 total yards and 49ers cornerback Carlos Rogers said the Jets quit. Ryan claimed the team was ‘just tired,’ which is one of his normal laughable statements.

Quarterback Mark Sanchez has been a big part of the problem (69.6 rating, ranked 30th). His receiving weapons this week are almost non-existent with Holmes out and rookie Stephen Hill (hamstring) doubtful. Tight end Dustin Keller (hamstring) is listed as questionable after missing the last three games, but that seems optimistic.

There was a rumor that owner Woody Johnson would push for Tim Tebow to start playing more, but there doesn’t appear to be much truth to that. Sanchez would really benefit from the running game picking up (86.5 YPG, ranked 24th), but both Shonn Greene (2.8 ypc) and Bilal Powell (3.8 YPG) are average talent at best.

The Texans (4-0 SU and ATS) are one of two undefeated teams left after Arizona lost at St. Louis last night. They are the favorite to win the AFC (+140) in the current future odds as well as to win the Super Bowl (+350).

Coach Gary Kubiak is certainly enjoying his change of fortune. Houston didn’t even make the playoffs his first five years and it wasn’t certain he would keep his job. A tough loss at Baltimore in the Divisional Round last year appears to have built momentum for this season.

The health of quarterback Matt Schaub is another reason for success. He missed the last six regular season games and the playoffs with a foot injury. This year, he has a 105.3 rating (ranked third) and the offense is second overall in points (31.5 PPG).

The Texans defense had some questions heading into the season after losing defensive end Mario Williams to free agency and the trade of middle linebacker DeMeco Ryans. However, the unit ranks first overall in both total yards (273 PPG) and points (14 PPG).

The Jets are hoping that the Texans’ fast start is a bye-product of an easy schedule. They have been 13-point favorites twice against Tennessee and Miami. Their game at Denver was the only real tough one (31-25 win as 1-point favorites).

Houston is 2-0 on the road this year and 7-1 ATS in its last eight away overall.

The Jets have won all five lifetime meetings (4-1 ATS) against the Texans. Houston did cover the last game in November 2010, a 30-27 loss as 6½-point road ‘dogs. That was also the first ‘over’ after the ‘under’ started 4-0.

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