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Harry’s Betting Strategies for the AFC East

Tom Brady New England Patriots NFL AFC East Odds Analysis Preview

Harry Gagnon from Against All Odds has officially joined the Odds Shark team for the 2019 football season and he’ll be previewing and providing his favorite betting picks for every team in the NFL.

Here’s his betting preview of the AFC East:

New England Patriots

2018 Betting Notes
  • Season record: 11-5 SU, 9-7 ATS
  • Winners of the AFC East -800
  • PUSHed on O/U season win total of 11 -120
  • Winners of Super Bowl 53 +600 – Defeated LA Rams 13-3
  • Went 3-0 ATS in the postseason

New England Patriots 2019 Odds
MarketOdds from Bovada
Season Win Total 11OVER -135, UNDER +105
To Win Super Bowl+700
To Win AFC+325
To Win AFC East-500
To Make PlayoffsYes -650, No +450

Let us start with that on July 22, 2019, Super Bowl LIII (53 for those who can’t read roman numerals) MVP wide receiver Julian Edelman reported that he will be sidelined until the middle of August with a thumb injury. Do we feel sorry for him or the Patriots? Well, let us go back for the past five years as the Pats have made the Super Bowl in four of those years, winning it three times. Plus, the time they lost, Tom Brady threw for an astonishing 505 yards in an epic loss to Philadelphia, so let us not feel bad for Edelman, the fans of the Pats, or the New England Patriots, EVER!!!

I hope I made myself clear, but it can’t be denied that this franchise continues to be on probably the best run in sports franchise history. The Boston Celtics and Bill Russell may be able to argue that but aside from them, this team’s run, starting with the “tuck rule” of all things, has been unmatched.

This franchise somehow always gets the right players to fill the team’s needs and continues to dominate football. They have only lost the division once (2008 Dolphins) dating back to 2003 and in the last 10 years their fewest number of wins in a season has been 11, which was this past season and we all know how that journey ended. The Pats are 24-14 against the spread in the last two seasons (including playoffs).

They also just happen to be in the easiest division in maybe all of sports. They were 5-1 SU vs the AFC East last season, the only loss coming on an “umpteen” lateral play at the end of the game in Miami, and the five victories coming by an average of 19 points. In their last 11 games vs the Jets and the Bills, the Pats are 11-0 straight up, winning those games by an average of 20 points. That is just a few facts that show how dominant they are in the East.

On offense, look for rookie WR N’Keal Harry out of Arizona State to flourish and to be the main target deep down the field and in the corner of the end zone for legendary head coach Bill Belichick. Harry is six-foot-three and 230 pounds and will be a stud vs five-foot-10 cornerbacks. Sony Michel had almost 1,000 yards rushing in his rookie season, plus underrated James White had 87 receptions out of the backfield for New England. Those two will provide plenty of firepower for the Pats among a cast of others who chip in when called upon.

It will be interesting how the Patriots deal with their tight end situation. Since the announcement that Rob Gronkowski was retiring (for now), they didn’t draft anyone and Ben Watson, who’s 38 years old, is suspended for the first four games of the season. This is not the deepest or the most talented team Belichick or Brady has had but we all know they will make it work.

On defense the Pats acquired defensive end Michael Bennett from the Eagles to help with pressure up the middle. New England still has a fantastic secondary led by All-Pro Stephon Gilmore. As a wild card, look out for rookie defensive end Chase Winovich from Michigan. In his last two years in Ann Arbor, he recorded 34.5 tackles for losses and had 13.5 sacks.

As we all can surmise, the East will be a cakewalk for New England but can they repeat as Super Bowl champs? They most definitely can if Edelman puts up solid numbers and stays healthy and they figure out their tight end situation, because like I said earlier, they (they being Brady, Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels) always do.

My prediction for the 2019 New England Patriots: 12-4

Betting Strategy
  • $25 on OVER 11 wins -145
  • $25 on the Patriots to win the AFC +325

Buffalo Bills

2018 Betting Notes
  • Season record: 6-10 SU, 7-9 ATS
  • Finished 3rd in the AFC East
  • Went UNDER on O/U season win total of 6.5 -120

Buffalo Bills 2019 Odds
MarketOdds from Bovada
Season Win Total 6.5OVER -200, UNDER +160
To Win Super Bowl+10000
To Win AFC+5000
To Win AFC East+950
To Make PlayoffsYes +300, No -400

The 2018 Bills team had its ups and downs after making the playoffs the year before. They looked like world-beaters when they went into Minnesota as a 17-point underdog and won convincingly by 21. However, this was the same team that scored the third-fewest points in the league and ranked 30th in total yards. Being an Upstate New York guy myself, I’ve witnessed these types of swings with Buffalo for what seems like forever. Despite the anemic offense, at times this team showed a lot of bright sides heading into the 2019 campaign.

Head coach Sean McDermott has one heck of a defense that kept them in many games last year. The Bills return 10 starters on a defense that held teams to under 200 total yards in games last year 10 times. The drafting of Ed Oliver in the first round will create a bigger pass rush up the middle and allow the Bills’ top two pass rushers, defensive end Jerry Hughes and linebacker Lorenzo Alexander, to be more explosive. Their secondary will be solid again with the duo of Micah Hyde and Jordan Poyer leading the ballhawks. Poyer led the Bills with four picks and was second in tackles with 100.

Now, because of the offense, a lot of opinions out there say that Buffalo will not be competitive. Not me!!! This team will be fun to watch with eight new starters on offense.

I saw a lot of maturity and raw talent displayed by rookie quarterback Josh Allen out of Wyoming in 2018. Allen actually led the Bills rushing game with 631 yards and eight touchdowns. He didn’t have a lot of talent at the receiver spot so they went out and grabbed Baltimore wideout John Brown in free agency. Brown had five touchdown receptions last year, the most since he had seven with Arizona in 2015.

Wide receiver Zay Jones led Buffalo in receptions and averaged a touchdown a game over the last five games of the season. Veteran Frank Gore, 36, has joined this team to show leadership and that he’s still capable of being a valuable asset in the backfield as he enters his 16th season. I believe the pickup of slot guy Cole Beasley from Dallas will be the most important part to the Bills moving in the right direction offensively. Beasley is the player they have been looking for to help on third downs and make plays while being underneath the coverage.

There are wins out there for Buffalo to grab. In 2018 the Bills could have wound up with eight wins if things had gone their way. Buffalo can get eight wins this year if Allen is able to expand the field with his new receivers, a more productive running game takes some pressure off of Allen, and the defense stays as tight as it was last season.

My prediction for the 2019 Buffalo Bills: 8-8

Betting Strategy
  • $50 on OVER 6.5 wins -200

New York Jets

2018 Betting Notes
  • Season record: 4-12 SU, 5-10-1 ATS
  • Finished LAST in the AFC East
  • Went UNDER on O/U season win total of 6 -130

New York Jets 2019 Odds
MarketOdds from Bovada
Season Win Total 7.5OVER -120, UNDER -120
To Win Super Bowl+8000
To Win AFC+4000
To Win AFC East+950
To Make PlayoffsYes +275, No -350

The Jets’ season in 2018 was another disappointing one as they continued their streaks of not making the playoffs (not since 2010) and not having a winning record (not since 2015). After a 3-3 start, they finished the season with losses in nine of their last 10 games by an average of almost 14 points a game.

Gang Green’s 2019 draft class was heavily pointed in the direction of the defense, which included No. 3 overall pick Quinnen Williams, a defensive tackle from Alabama, and third-rounder Jachai Polite, a defensive end out of Florida. Those two will definitely tighten up some holes in an exhausted defense that yielded an average of 31 points per game the last 11 games of the campaign.

The scheduling gods didn’t do the Jets any favors early on in the season. They arguably have the toughest first six games of the year. In Week 2 they will get the upstart Cleveland Browns on a Monday night. In Weeks 3 and 4 they have to face NFC East powers Philadelphia and Dallas, and let us not forget during that stretch they get thrown the Super Bowl champion Patriots not once, but twice.

The season could come crashing down on second-year quarterback Sam Darnold that quickly if he and his coaching staff don’t figure out the team’s many negative aspects. Darnold took his bumps and bruises as the season went along, and is now having to deal with new head coach Adam Gase and new offensive line coach Frank Pollack, who is the Jets’ third OL coach in as many years.

New York had numerous issues on offense last season, such that they failed to score more than 13 points in seven of their games. Darnold failed to get the ball downfield consistently or with any accuracy. Nearly half of his completions were to running backs or tight ends for minimum yardage. Wide receiver Robby Anderson led New York with 50 receptions and no one else on the squad had 40.

The big free-agent signing of running back Le’Veon Bell from Pittsburgh brings the Jets fan base hope with his ability to not only run but make big plays catching the ball (averaged 80 receptions a year in his last three full seasons with the Steelers). Bell will bring some electricity to a franchise that drastically needs a sparkplug, but if the Jets don’t get help from others besides those two, defenses will be able to key on them and it will be another major struggle for New York to put up points and, more importantly, win games.

My prediction for the 2019 New York Jets: 5-11

Betting Strategy
  • $50 on UNDER 7.5 wins -120

Miami Dolphins

2018 Betting Notes
  • Season record: 7-9 SU, 8-8 ATS
  • Finished 2nd in the AFC East
  • Went OVER on O/U season win total of 6 -115

Miami Dolphins 2019 Odds
MarketOdds from Bovada
Season Win Total 4.5OVER -130, UNDER EVEN
To Win Super Bowl+15000
To Win AFC+6500
To Win AFC East+2500
To Make PlayoffsYes +950, No -1900

This is going to be a tough season for Miami as they go through numerous changes from a seven-win team a year ago.

Let’s see here, the Dolphins swim into this season with a couple of new quarterbacks that have a 14-year age range, a new defensive coordinator and a new head coach. They signed journeyman quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to be there in case Josh Rosen’s world comes crashing down like it did in Arizona after just one season with the Cardinals. In fairness to Rosen, he had the worst offensive line in football and had the least amount of time to throw the ball (two seconds) in the league. However, when Rosen did have time to throw the football, he didn’t look comfortable and made bad decisions constantly.

New head coach Brian Flores and defensive coordinator Patrick Graham inherit a defense that was 27th in points allowed and 29th in yards allowed. To say the Dolphins coaching staff has its work cut out for them would probably be the understatement of the upcoming season for any team.

Also, in the offseason Miami didn’t do much to help its crumbling defensive line. The Fins let defensive end Cameron Wake walk away in free agency and traded pass rusher Robert Quinn to the Cowboys. Those two led the Dolphins with 12.5 sacks last campaign.

On offense, Dade County legend Frank Gore shoveled off to division rival Buffalo and leading receiver Danny Amendola signed with Detroit. In desperation mode, the Dolphins even signed some players in the offseason from the now-defunct Alliance of American Football to try to help this organization. This is what happens when franchises don’t hire smartly in their front office and then it trickles down to the coaches and players. I know their OVER/UNDER on the season is 5 but winning three games could be a distinct challenge.

The Dolphins did do something right by extending the contract of Pro Bowl cornerback Xavien Howard. Miami had 21 interceptions a year ago and Howard wound up with seven of them. Frankly, it was also a solid move to cut ties with quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who was given multiple chances to succeed but just couldn’t get things done in South Beach.

One more positive for Miami was that they got a steal in Rosen considering what they gave up to get him and dividends may pay off in the future, but unfortunately for Dolphins fans that’s not happening in 2019.

My prediction for the 2019 Miami Dolphins: 2-14

Betting Strategy
  • $50 on UNDER 4.5 wins EVEN