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Rolling the dice with Sam Darnold mono a mano against Tom Brady

The Jets looked good in Sam Darnold’s Week 6 return from mono. Can they build on their win over the Cowboys? We break down the point spread and offer a pick for Week 7 Monday Night Football.

Tom Brady of the New England Patriots hugs Sam Darnold of the New York Jets after a game at Gillette Stadium on December 30, 2018 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The New York Jets host the New England Patriots in the Week 8 finale, with what is an unexpectedly intriguing matchup on Monday Night Football. The Patriots are undefeated through six games, while the Jets are 1-4. And yet, this game could be significantly more competitive than some might expect.

Entering the season, the Jets were viewed as a potential playoff contender that might offer at least some semblance of competition for the Patriots in the AFC East. After the Jets lost their season-opener to Buffalo, Sam Darnold was diagnosed with mononucleosis and sidelined for the next month. The Jets lost four straight leading up to Darnold’s return in Week 6.

Darnold and the Jets stunned the Dallas Cowboys, with the returning quarterback throwing for 338 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. The Cowboys fought back in the fourth quarter, but the Jets held on for their first win.

The Jets will not push for the division title, but even at 1-4, they could get back into the wild card race. The Buffalo Bills are 5-1 and hold the top wild card berth, but the 4-3 Houston Texans hold the second wild card berth, 2.5 games up on New York. Monday is not a must-win for the Jets, but a strong showing will provide some hope as they look to turn around what was starting to look like a lost season.

And with that, the Jets enter Monday Night Football as a 9.5-point underdog to the Patriots at DraftKings Sportsbook. There is a slight edge in betting in favor of the Patriots, but I see this as a good spot to grab the Jets. If you can get near ten points as a primetime home underdog, it’s a strong position. I’d prefer ten points, and if you’re comfortable teasing the half point, be my guest. But with the Jets potentially on the rebound courtesy of Sam Darnold, it’s a nice spot to jump on the primetime home underdog.

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