AFC Top Three Matchups-Week 2
The 2012 NFL regular season is off and running and there are already a couple of critical AFC matchups on this week’s slate of games. The following is a handicapping report for the top three games from within the conference with lines provided by Bovada
Houston Texans (-7) vs. Jacksonville Jaguars Total Line: 41
Houston opened the season as one of the favorites to win the AFC and after completely dismantling Miami 30-10 on opening day as a 13-point home favorite it appears to be well on its way. The Texans’ offensive firepower is back with quarterback Matt Schaub and wide receiver Andre Johnson return from injuries that prematurely ended their 2011 season.
Give credit to Jacksonville for showing some offensive power as well in Sunday’s heart-breaking 26-23 overtime loss to Minnesota as a 3.5-point underdog on the road. The Jaguars accumulated 355 yards of total offense, but gave-up 389 total yards to Minnesota.
The Texans are 9-4 straight-up in their last 13 games and the total has stayed UNDER in 11 of their last 16. The Jaguars are 2-6 SU in their last eight games with the total stayed UNDER in six of their last nine home games. Jacksonville is 6-14 against the spread in its last 20 games against Houston. The total has stayed UNDER in six of the last nine meetings in Jacksonville.
Kansas City Chiefs vs. Buffalo Bills (-9) Total Line: 44
Kansas City stumbled out of the gates for second-straight season with a 40-24 loss to Atlanta as a two-point home underdog. The total went way OVER the 43-point line. The Chiefs only trailed 20-17 at the half but came unglued with three second-half turnovers including two Matt Cassel interceptions.
Buffalo’s new-look defense that included the addition of Mario Williams failed its first test miserably in a 48-28 loss to the AFC East rival Jets at a three-point road underdog. The total went OVER the 39.5-point line. Two fourth quarter scores by the Bills made this game appear to be much closer than it actually was.
The Chiefs are 4-2 SU in their last six games on the road overall, but 0-5 SU and a costly 0-5 ATS in their last five trips to Buffalo. The total has stayed UNDER in eight of the last 10 meetings. Last season, the Bills cruised to a 41-7 victory on opening day as 3.5-point road underdogs. The total went OVER the 38.5-point line.
New York Jets vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (-6.5) Total Line: 41.5
New York’s romp over Buffalo erased the memory of a preseason in which the offense only managed one touchdown in four games. Mark Sanchez put Jets’ fans at ease with a 70.3 percent completion percentage for 266 yards and three touchdowns. The team did not need to rely on any Tim Tebow gadget plays, but New York did lose cornerback Derrelle Revis with a concussion. His status for this Sunday remains up in the air.
Pittsburgh will need to start from scratch in this game after Denver rolled to a 31-19 victory as a one-point home favorite this past Sunday night. The Steelers had no answer for a rejuvenated Peyton Manning as their vaunted defense gave-up 17 fourth quarter points.
The Jets are 4-12 SU in their last 16 games against Pittsburgh. They are 4-10 ATS in the last 14 meetings and the total has stayed UNDER in nine of the last 12. They last met in the 2010 AFC Championship Game with Pittsburgh winning 24-19 as a four-point home favorite.
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.