SharpClarke’s Best NFL Bet of Week 1: NYG @ TEN Matchup Spotlight

No one is happy to bet on these teams in Week 1. After they traded one of their best players to AJ Brown and drafted a quarterback, tanking rumors haunt the streets of Nashville. Then arguably their best defensive player, Harold Landry, tore his ACL. Meanwhile, the optimism at the start of the offseason about a Giants team emerging from the shadow of poor training and implementing an offensive plan that could finally help Daniel Jones reach his potential has particularly soured. .


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Both teams have a lot to prove in this game, which is quietly important for both teams. Based primarily on the Titans’ impressive 12-5 result last year and the Giants’ dismal 4-13 record, betting markets opened at TEN -6.5. Excitement for the Giants and pessimism about the Titans has brought the number down to TEN -5.5, where it looks like it’s leveled off (for now).

My numbers

Titans: 19th (Attack: 17th, Defense: 15th)
giants: 28th (Attack: 28th, Defense: 28th)
Baseline: TEN -6.5, -262 Moneyline

Distribution of matches

TEN Offense against NYG Defense

With Derrick Henry, the Titans’ offensive philosophy has been clear. They will run towards you until you stack the box. Behind a dubious offensive line, Henry will have a few runs that stuff, especially inside against Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams. But no running back in the NFL is tougher to beat than Henry after gaining momentum. If he can break through the first layer and get up at a full canter, he can take it home himself. To stop the Titans, you need to stop Henry by stacking the box and making sure he can’t get to the second level.

This is a major problem for the Giants. The back-end of the Giants defense is a glaring weakness. They’ll need extra help from linebackers and safeties, which means unique coverage on the outside. The Titans’ play-action passing game with Ryan Tannehill thrives against bad cornerbacks because of the favorable covers they face. New defensive coordinator Wink Martindale loves the blitz, which worked when he had elite cornerbacks with the Ravens. But it all came crashing down last year when his cornerbacks were injured. That’s basically his starting point this year with the Giants.

We really fear that Robert Woods, Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and Treylon Burks are not AJ Brown and Julio Jones. I was hoping to see a lot more Burks in preseason and he was a disappointment. But this is one of the most favorable matchups they will face all year. The Giants need to commit extra resources to stop the run, and most NFL-caliber receivers can find a way to gain single coverage. With Kayvon Thibodeaux and Azeez Ojulari injured and currently doubtful to play, this Giants defense that ranked 30th in pressure rating last season will struggle to upset Tannehill, who is good enough when the circumstances are right to build a lead. .

If the Titans create a lead, that’s bad news for the Giants. Henry gets stronger as the game progresses because it takes so much strength and effort to defeat him. These giants’ defense just isn’t equipped to make the key saves needed to pull off a comeback if they go to bed early. They will need to establish a lead or at least keep the game competitive early to keep their defense together.

RELATED: See all Week 1 bets SharpClarke has made so far!

NYG Offense vs. TEN Defense

The Giants might struggle to move the ball in this game. The Titans’ defense took the team to a 12-5 record last season while the offense struggled, limiting some very good teams along the way. The defensive line took its toll on opposing quarterbacks, with Jeffery Simmons emerging as a force in the middle and Harold Landry bringing pressure from the edge. Linebackers consistently contained moving quarters and forced bad throws instead of hustling each other. They’ve used deceptive coverage to trick quarterbacks into making bad throws and thwarting effective passing plays all season. Even in the Titans’ playoff loss to the Bengals, the defense did its job. However, they will have to keep up the pressure without passing thrower Harold Landry, who suffered a torn ACL in practice last week.

Daniel Jones struggles to see and adapt once the ball is broken. He throws a pretty deep ball when his catcher beats his man, but that doesn’t happen very often against Titans coverage. I expect him to make several mistakes in this game as he struggles to see pressure and makes poor reads in coverage. If Saquon Barkley can consistently pick up chunks of rushing yards, they can definitely make it easier for Jones. But the Titans’ run defense is solid and the Giants’ already mediocre offensive line is recovering from injuries in training camp. That means Jones will have to make big plays, which is hard to do. If the Giants fall behind and can’t run the ball, that problem leads to more problems and could snowball into turnovers.

Brian Daboll and Mike Kafka will improve this attack. Without a doubt, they will implement a better offensive system than Joe Judge and Jason Garrett did last year. But I see three reasons why it won’t make a big enough difference in Week 1:

  • First, and foremost, Daniel Jones just isn’t Josh Allen or Patrick Mahomes. He lacks the vision and mobility that allows Allen and Mahomes to handle the complex and varied offenses that Daboll and Kafka have grown accustomed to.
  • Second, new offenses take time to materialize.
  • And third, even with Josh Allen, the Titans have had the Bills’ number in recent years. The Titans’ defense especially excels against moving quarterbacks because they stay disciplined and create the illusion of space.

The Giants are going to improve on offense, but I don’t think we’ll see that in Week 1.

Prediction

The Titans build a lead and protect it. Henry wears down the defensive line while Tannehill makes some clutch finishes on third down. The Titans convert red-zone opportunities into touchdowns while the Giants stall. Mike Vrabel beats Brian Daboll in his first match. Playing from behind, the Giants are forced to be aggressive but a key turnover or turnover on the downs prevents a backdoor cover.

Final score prediction: TEN 24, NYG 16

Market assessment

The last step between having a handicap and placing a bet should be to reconcile the market price. Theoretically, the market is efficient. I can’t play if I can’t explain what is taking the market away from my fair price. The market movement here is concerning to me as it appears high volume bettors (usually, but not always indicative of net action) like the Giants. But I think those market forces are imperfect.

Bettors have been loving the Giants on bets throughout the season due to the planned coaching upgrade at Daboll and a strong start to the draft draw. They have a ridiculously easy projected schedule and play in the weak NFC. That optimism translates into season-long betting on the Giants. But those bets then inflate a bettor’s weekly outlook on the Giants. Confirmation bias skews thinking by focusing on reasons to support the Giants instead of evaluating how bad this team currently is. We don’t even know that Daboll is a good head coach and most new programs take time to materialize.

No more bets on week 1 totals!

Meanwhile, no one wants to touch the Titans as they are apparently going to fall off a cliff. Bettors have blurred them in the futures market. They want to see this team fail. But it’s a proud, well-drilled team that went 12-5 last year despite a myriad of injuries. They beat the Rams, Chiefs, Bills and 49ers. Like most people who were paying attention, I know it wasn’t a 12-win-per-quality-of-play team. But my efficiency ratings said it was an adjusted 10.39-win team. for the schedule, good for ninth-best in the NFL. Even after adjusting for the loss of AJ Brown, they’re in a different class than the Giants. I think the market leaned too far in either direction and created a little value on Tennessee.

Best bets

  • TEN -5.5 (-110) – Widely available.
  • NYG team total under 19.5 (-110) – Available on FanDuel.
  • Survivor: No game due to Harold Landry’s injury.
  • TEN -12.5 (+235) – Available on DraftKings.

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