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Jets vs. Panthers odds, analysis and predictions for all Week 1 NFL games

It’s not easy to find successful trends for the Jets, but as Robert Saleh prepares to put on the headset for the first time in Charlotte, N.C., on Sunday, there’s this: The Jets are 5-2 in their past seven opening games with new coaching regimes.

The winners were Bill Parcells (1997, 41-3 at Seattle), Al Groh (2000, 20-16 at Green Bay), Eric Mangini (2006, 23-16 at Tennessee), Rex Ryan (2009, 24-7 at Houston) and Todd Bowles (2015, 31-10 vs. Cleveland). Though eras and circumstances change, you can see some similarities to Saleh’s situation. Four of those wins were on the road. Parcells was cleaning up after the Jets’ 1-15 season in 1996. Ryan started rookie QB Mark Sanchez, as Saleh is doing Sunday with Zach Wilson.

Can the Jets cover as underdogs against the Panthers, let alone upset them to allow Saleh to join that list? Offensively, I believe there’s going to be a big improvement from the Adam Gase-Sam Darnold mess. The wide-zone running scheme has worked in most places it’s been tried. With some ground success, Wilson shouldn’t be “behind the chains” so often and will be able to use his athleticism, strong arm and (hopefully) good decision-making to put up some points. He has some capable targets in Corey Davis, Denzel Mims and Elijah Moore, and potentially solid blindside blocking with rookie Alijah Vera-Tucker alongside Mekhi Becton.

Jets vs. Panthers odds, prediction
Jets coach Robert Saleh; Panthers QB Sam Darnold
Bill Kostroun; AP

The defense is expected to be bad, but that’s Saleh’s forte, and he does have one stud at each level (Quinnen Williams, C.J. Mosley and Marcus Maye) to build around. And there are enough nasty guys on the line to make things uncomfortable for Darnold, even if there’s no true edge rusher.

The pick: Jets, +4.

Denver Broncos (-3) over New York Giants

I’m seeing prognosticators oversimplify this matchup to Von Miller and Bradley Chubb versus a terrible Giants offensive line. There’s also the iffy status of Saquon Barkley, the lack of preseason action for Kadarius Toney and the dearth of NFL-level tight ends. The Giants’ defense should be excellent, and I’m expecting this to be a low-scoring game where even a small point spread could make a difference. But the pick is the Broncos with new quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who is 35-14 against the spread in his career as a starter, per VSiN’s Josh Appelbaum.

Atlanta Falcons (-3.5) over Philadelphia Eagles

New Falcons coach Arthur Smith has Matt Ryan throwing to Calvin Ridley and sensational rookie Kyle Pitts, and will try to use 5-foot-9, 220-pounder Mike Davis like Derrick Henry. Tough draw for Nick Sirianni in his debut as Eagles coach.

Pittsburgh Steelers (+6.5) over Buffalo Bills

It’s a lot of points to be giving Mike Tomlin, who is 38-19 ATS an underdog. Pittsburgh has four new starters on the offensive line and Buffalo is my pick to win its first Super Bowl, but I’m not expecting this first one to be easy.

Cincinnati Bengals (+3) over Minnesota Vikings

Joe Burrow averaged 268.8 yards per game as a rookie before getting injured and now has LSU standout Ja’Marr Chase in his arsenal. Hoping the Bengals added enough on defense to stand up to Dalvin Cook and Justin Jefferson.

Bengals vs. Vikings odds, prediction NFL Week 1
Joe Burrow can help the Bengals cover against the Vikings.
Getty Images

Detroit Lions (+7.5) over San Francisco 49ers

Welcome to the NFL coaching fraternity Dan (“When you knock us down, we’re going to get up, and on the way up, we’re going to bite a kneecap off”) Campbell! Taking a shot that Campbell will have the Lions fired up because I’m not crazy laying more than a touchdown with Jimmy Garoppolo.

Tennessee Titans (-3) over Arizona Cardinals

Get used to seeing the Titans as the pick most weeks. Adding Julio Jones to the offense and Bud Dupree to the defense gives Mike Vrabel the firepower to take this team a long way.

Seattle Seahawks (-2.5) over Indianapolis Colts

Summer injuries to Carson Wentz and Quentin Nelson have me skeptical about how ready the Colts will be to start the season. Thinking Pete Carroll will give Russell Wilson a chance to be “DangeRuss” again after curiously reining him in last season.

Los Angeles Chargers (-1) over Washington Football Team

Chargers have a ton of talent and a highly regarded offensive mind in new coach Brandon Staley. He’s been preparing Justin Herbert to face Chase Young and the tough WFT front line for months and will have his quarterback ready.

Houston Texans (+3) over Jacksonville Jaguars

There’s often one horrible team that springs a “how did that happen?” upset in Week 1. Houston fits that bill, but after the Travis Etienne injury and Tim Tebow debacle, there’s no guarantee Urban Meyer and Trevor Lawrence will take the NFL by storm.

Cleveland Browns (+6) over Kansas City Chiefs

Everyone is presuming the Chiefs fixed the offensive line that left Patrick Mahomes touchdown-less in the Super Bowl. Myles Garrett will be the judge of that … and KC also will have to slow down the Browns’ explosive running game.

Chiefs vs. Browns odds NFL Week 1
Myles Garrett might make it a long day for Patrick Mahomes.
AP

New England Patriots (-3) over Miami Dolphins

Bill Belichick stocked up on veterans for this season and has given rookie QB Mac Jones plenty to work with. Tough opener for Tua Tagovailoa, who by 4 p.m. might be wishing the Dolphins had drafted Oregon OT Penei Sewell.

New Orleans Saints (+4.5) over Green Bay Packers

Game was moved from New Orleans to Jacksonville after Hurricane Ida hit the gulf coast. I’m expecting a solid season from Jameis Winston and have faith in Sean Payton to stay within this inflated number.

Los Angeles Rams (-7.5) over Chicago Bears

Rams were No. 1 in points and yards allowed in 2020, and Aaron Donald and the pass rush will take aim at statuesque Andy Dalton in the opener. If Matthew Stafford is half of what the Rams expect, they should win a lot of games this season.

Monday Night Football

Las Vegas Raiders (+4.5) over Baltimore Ravens

Looking to ride some emotion in prime time as Allegiant Stadium (aka the Death Star) will be filled with fans for the first time. The Ravens will miss RB J.K. Dobbins, who rushed for 6.0 yards per carry and scored nine touchdowns last year, and backup Gus Edwards, who left practice Friday with a knee injury.

Best bets: Patriots, Titans, Raiders.

Lock of the week: Patriots. Locks went 4-12-1 in 2020.

Thursday pick: Cowboys.

nypost.com

New York Post

The New York Post is a daily tabloid newspaper in New York City. The Post also operates NYPost.com, the celebrity gossip site PageSix.com and the entertainment site Decider.com.

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