Seven weeks are in the books, and the AFC east is proving to be one of the toughest divisions in football. The Jets have shocked everyone starting the season 5-2. The Dolphins stormed out of the gate before scary injuries slowed their role. The Bills are looking like one of the best teams in the NFL, to nobody’s surprise. Quarterback controversy has stolen all the headlines in New England.
Now that we’ve seen seven weeks of football let’s take a look at the win totals and odds to win the division. How have the odds and expectations shifted from the start of the season? Pick an over-under on each total, and see if anyone’s odds are worth placing a bet on.
AFC East Updated Win Totals and Picks
Pre-Season Win Total: 11.5 (O-130/U+115)
Pre-Season Division Winner: (-230)
Updated AFC East Win Total: 13.5 (O-115/U-105)
Updated Division Winner: (-850)
The Bills opened the season blowing out the defending Super Bowl champion Rams and last year’s AFC #1 seed in the playoffs, the Tennessee Titans. Week three brought the Bills their first loss in a shocker to the division opponent Miami Dolphins. Wins over the Ravens, Steelers, and Chiefs followed, putting the Bills at 5-1.
There is no value at all in betting the Bills to win the division at -850. Those odds are crazy, but prove just how good this team is. The Bills are currently the favorites to win the Super Bowl (+250) and seem like a slam dunk to win this division. With two games each against the Patriots and Jets and teams like the Lions, Bears, and Browns left on the schedule, over 13.5 seems like a smash play at this point.
Pick: Over 13.5 (-115)
Pre-Season Win Total: 8.5 (O-140/U+125)
Pre-Season Division Winner: (+425)
Updated AFC East Win Total: 9.5 (O-110/U-110)
Updated Division Winner: (+1100)
The Dolphins opened the season 3-0. Wins over the Patriots, an amazing second-half comeback to upset the Ravens, and the week three upset of the mighty Buffalo Bills had everyone buzzing about this Miami team. Then came the Thursday night game against the Bengals; Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa suffered a scary blow to the head resulting in his second concussion in as many weeks. The Dolphins lost three games in a row as Tua sat on the sidelines. In week seven, Tua returned, and the Dolphins topped the Steelers to bring their record to 4-3.
With their only three losses being in games with backups in at Quarterback, it’s kept their win total down but proven this team is here to compete. With Tyreek Hill and Jalen Waddle on either side, this offense is explosive. The Lions are up this week, followed by the Bears, the Texans, Patriots, and Jets all remain on the schedule, and the Dolphins have already proven they can beat the Buffalo Bills. At only 9.5, I have to go over again. While it looks like nobody is likely to catch the Bills, injuries or other things can happen, and at 11/1 odds, the Dolphins are worth a small bet to win the division, just in case.
Pick: Over 9.5 (-110)
New England Patriots
Pre-Season Win Total: 8.5 (O-115/U+105)
Pre-Season Division Winner: (+450)
Updated AFC East Win Total: 7.5 (O-110/U-110)
Updated Division Winner: (+3400)
The Patriots started the season with a loss to the Dolphins and then squeaked out a win over the Steelers. Week three brought a loss at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens, with starting Quarterback Mac Jones getting hurt very late in that game. In week four, Brian Hoyer took the reins before being knocked out early against the Packers. Insert fourth-round rookie pick Bailey Zappe; Zappe goes toe to toe with Aaron Rodgers in a close loss.
Zappe then leads the team to wins over the Lions and Browns. In week seven, Mac Jones once again gets the start but quickly throws an interception and is benched in favor of the rookie Zappe. The Patriots get blasted by the Bears. Mac Jones is scheduled to start once again in week eight. Will he hold on to the job, or will the Quarterback carousel continue for New England?
The Patriots sit at 3-4 heading into week seven. They play the Jets twice in the next three weeks, a team coach Bill Belichick is 34-10 against in his career. The Colts, with new starter Sam Ehlinger, roll into town. Games against former Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels’ Raiders and the Cardinals are all on the schedule as well. While having two Quarterbacks usually means you don’t have any, I cannot bet against Bill Belichick.
Pick: Over 7.5 (-110)
New York Jets
Pre-Season Win Total: 5.5 (O-145/U+130)
Pre-Season Division Winner: (+2000)
Updated AFC East Win Total: 8.5 (O-125/U+125)
Updated Division Winner (+2000)
The New York football Jets are probably the biggest surprise of the 2022 season thus far. A 5-2 record and sitting second place in the division isn’t something most of us had on our bingo cards. Let alone with Joe Flacco starting some of those games. The Jets started the season with a loss to the Ravens.
Week two was a miracle in Cleveland after the Browns gave away that game. A loss to the Bengals was followed by wins over the Steelers, Dolphins, Packers, and Broncos. Looking back, the Jets might be the luckiest team in the league rather than one that is truly that good. Cleveland fumbled their game away. The Steelers made the switch to their rookie Quarterback at halftime. The Dolphins were starting Skylar Thompson, and the Broncos played Brett Rypien at Quarterback.
Star rookie Running Back Breece Hall is lost to an ACL injury. Corey Davis may miss games due to injury, and Elijah Moore is unhappy with his usage. The schedule gets tough going forward for the Jets, the Patriots, the Bills, and the Patriots again in the next three weeks. The Vikings, Bills, Dolphins, and Seahawks all remain on their schedule. I think the luck stops here, and the landing gear falls off this Jets team.
Pick: Under 8.5 (+125)