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NFL Preseason Week 2 preview: Falcons vs. Jets odds, picks, prediction

The Action Network’s Michael Arinze previews Monday’s preseason matchup between the Falcons and the Jets

Head coach Robert Saleh of the New York Jets looks on as Sauce Gardner reacts behind him against the Philadelphia Eagles in the second half of the preseason game at Lincoln Financial Field on August 12, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Jets defeated the Eagles 24-21. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Head coach Robert Saleh of the New York Jets looks on as Sauce Gardner reacts behind him against the Philadelphia Eagles in the second half of the preseason game at Lincoln Financial Field on August 12, 2022 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Jets defeated the Eagles 24-21. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)Read moreMitchell Leff / Getty Images

The NFL puts a bow on the second week of the preseason with the New York Jets hosting the Atlanta Falcons at MetLife Stadium Monday night.

Both teams come into this matchup with a 1-0 preseason record.

As in any preseason game, the decision of head coaches to start or sit their players often plays a big part in the narrative. And for Jets’ head coach Robert Saleh, he’s struggling with this decision after his team has been hit with injuries early on.

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With Saleh remaining somewhat guarded, it’s difficult for bettors to form a conclusive opinion on which side to lean in terms of the point spread or the total.

We’ll examine the line movement for this game to see if there’s anything we can glean from it to aid in our analysis.

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Falcons vs. Jets NFL odds

Odds provided by FanDuel

Moneyline: ATL (-200) vs. NYJ (+170)

Spread: ATL -4.5 (-110) vs. NYJ +4.5 (-110)

Total: Over 37.5 (-110) | Under 37.5 (-110)

We improved to 4-1 with two cashes in Sunday’s game with the Eagles taking on the Browns. I thoroughly enjoyed the game because it allowed me to play the role of a contrarian as the betting market was all over the under, with the total dropping from as high as 41 points to 34.5 points.

And while I’d like to fade the market once again, I’m hesitant to try my luck two days in a row.

If you’re someone who pays attention to the early numbers, you’ll know this total opened as high as 43.5 at some sportsbooks. One sportsbook even opened with a total of 38 but was quickly bet up to 44 within a few hours before dropping back to 38.

As a result, the two different sets of opinions prompted three questions:

  1. How do preseason totals perform in Week 2?

  2. How do preseason totals perform with an opening number of at least 42 points and a closing number of 39 points or fewer?

  3. How do preseason totals perform with an opening number of at least 38 points and a closing number of 39 points or fewer?

Thankfully, our Action Labs database makes answering these questions easy.

For my first query, I discovered the total is 135-117-3 (+8.47 units) over in the second week of preseason.

This could support the logic that head coaches try to be a bit more expansive with their offense in Week 2 after perhaps taking a more conservative approach in Week 1.

When I explored the second question regarding an opening total of at least 42 points and a closing total of no more than 39 points, I found that the under is a perfect 6-0 in this spot.

And if we use an opening total of 38 points, the under is 90-80-1 for 4.08 units.

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Based on the quarterback matchup on paper, I still think the backups can move the ball up and down the field. But the potential for rain may lead to a much more conservative game plan for both head coaches.

While I think this game should be competitive, Saleh’s indecisiveness in handling his starters gives me some pause.

If I had to pick, I’d lean to the over, but I have no problem remaining on the sidelines for this one.

Falcons vs. Jets NFL odds pick

Lean over 37.5

The Inquirer is not an online gambling operator, or a gambling site. We provide this information about sports betting for entertainment purposes only.