The New York Jets (2-3) host the undefeated Philadelphia Eagles this Sunday (10/15/23) at 4:25pm ET in week 6 of the 2023 NFL season. The Eagles are the betting favorites with a spread of -6.5, while the over/under is set at 41 points. This article provides Eagles vs. Jets analysis, predictions and betting recommendations and explains why the best bet in this matchup is the under on 41 total points.
Eagles vs. Jets Prediction & Best Bet
This is a bad matchup for the Jets, especially the Jets’ offense.
Quarterback Zach Wilson has looked better over the last two weeks, but the Jets have succeeded on offense largely because of their running game. It helps that they played the Broncos’ putrid defense last week, but their 234 rushing yards (on 7.3 yards per carry) are still impressive regardless of the cushy matchup. Over the last 2 games, the Jets are 6th in the league in EPA per rush and 8th in rushing success rate.
The problem in this matchup is that the Eagles have one of the best run defenses so far this season. They are 1st in total run defense (61.2 yards per game), 4th in yards per carry allowed (3.4) and 1st in run defense DVOA. The Jets need to establish the run to make life easier for Zach Wilson, and if they can’t do that then their already limited offense is really going to struggle.
The Eagles’ defense can be exploited through the air, but Wilson needs to have enough time to find his pass catchers, and that is a more difficult proposition. The Eagles lead the league in pressures and are 6th in pressure rate (pressures/sacks per dropback) and 8th in sacks.
The Jets also just lost their best offensive lineman, Alijah Vera-Tucker, to an Achilles injury, and could be without starting LT Mekhi Becton. An already weak offensive line with those key injuries is going to make the rushing offense and pass protection that much more difficult.
For those reasons we expect the Jets’ offensive production to be very limited in this game, which makes the under on 41 total points the best bet in this game. The Eagles’ offense is certainly capable of scoring enough points on their own to push the total over 41, but it’s unlikely against the tough Jets defense.
Game script could also support the under pick. If the Eagles jump out to a big lead, they could take their foot off the gas in the second half, which would depress the scoring. If the game stays close into the second half, then it’s most likely because the Jets’ defense is stifling the Eagles’ offense, rather than the Jets’ offense keeping up with the Eagles. In either of those scenarios, the under is the more likely outcome.
If the Jets’ offense struggles the way we expect, then the Eagles should also comfortably cover the -6.5 spread. But that is still a big number to cover on the road against a stout defense, even for one of the best offenses in the league. The Eagles have also struggled in the red zone – 27th in red zone touchdown percentage – and if that continues then it’s very possible the Jets could keep the margin under a touchdown. We still like the Eagles to cover, but the under is the preferred bet.
Eagles vs. Jets Prediction & Best Bet: Eagles win 23-10, Eagles cover -6.5 (-112), under 41 total points (-110) (best bet)
Eagles vs. Jets Betting Odds
PHI @ NYJ
Oct. 15, 3:25 PM
Odds updated October 15th, 2023, at 6:32 pm
The spread in this game is hovering right at the key number of 7. As of this writing, DraftKings is the only sportsbook with the Eagles at -6.5, and everyone else has them at -7. It’s possible the Eagles will be available at -6.5 again at some point before kickoff, but it’s most likely they close at -7 across the board.
The total is trending down after opening at 42 across the board. Most sportsbooks are now at 41, while DraftKings is at 40.5.
The implied outcome of these odds is the Eagles winning 24-17.
Eagles vs. Jets Key Injuries
The Eagles are struggling with injuries in their secondary. Top cornerback Darius Slay was a surprise addition to the injury report this week, which is the Eagles’ most important injury to monitor. Starting safety Justin Evans and reserve safety Sydney Brown also remain questionable after missing the last two games, with Brown being the one more likely to suit up.
Eagles rookie DT Jalen Carter was also a surprise addition to the injury report on Thursday, which is never a good sign for availability on Sunday, but the Eagles have much better depth along the DL than they do in the secondary, where they have already lost multiple players to season-ending injuries.
The two most important Jets injuries to monitor are LT Mekhi Becton and CB D.J. Reed. The Jets are already missing LT Duane Brown (whom Becton moved from RT to replace) and RG/RT Alijah Vera-Tucker (who moved from RG to RT when Becton moved to LT). They can ill afford to be without Becton as well. Reed missed last week’s game but returned to practice this week, which is a good sign that he will suit up, but it’s still worth monitoring.
Eagles vs. Jets Key Matchups
Check out the key matchups and mismatches for Eagles vs. Jets below.
Breece Hall vs. Eagles’ run defense
We covered the importance of this matchup above, but it’s important enough to discuss a bit further. With all due respect to Sauce Gardner, Quinnen Williams and Garrett Wilson, Breece Hall is the most important player for the Jets outside of the quarterback. His explosiveness and big play ability combined with the impact his effectiveness can have on Zach Wilson make him the most important player for the Eagles defense to contain.
Hall looks like he is fully recovered from the ACL injury that cut short his rookie season last year. On last week’s big touchdown run (his first of the season), it sure looked like he’s regained the explosiveness he flashed as a rookie.
— New York Jets (@nyjets) October 8, 2023
While the Eagles’ run defense has been excellent so far this season, they haven’t exactly faced the most dangerous rushing attacks (Patriots, Vikings, Bucs, Commanders, Rams). Rushing defense was also one of their biggest weaknesses last year, so it’s fair to question this year’s success until we have a larger sample size.
Hall is by far the most dynamic and dangerous back the Eagles have faced so far this season, and if he breaks off a few big runs, that will completely change the dynamic of the Jets’ offense and the way the Eagles defend it. On the other hand, if the Eagles take away the run, their pass rushers will be able to pin their ears back and get after Wilson.
A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith vs. Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed
This matchup might not be the most important one for the outcome of this game, but it is the most interesting one and will be the most fun to watch. Brown and Smith are one of the best wide receiver tandems in the NFL who have matchup advantages almost every week, but Gardner and Reed are arguably the best cornerback tandem in the NFL.
Brown vs. Gardner will be the more competitive matchup, but Smith vs. Reed may be the most important, especially since Reed is still in the concussion protocol. Smith has been quiet the last few weeks, most notably last week when he had only 1 catch. After something like that happens, the Eagles tend to make a concerted effort to get a player more involved in the next game.
Considering Gardner’s shutdown ability on the other side, that could mean a high target volume for Smith against Reed. That becomes even more true if Reed ends up missing the game.