Odds – Predictions
There’s not much of a surprise when looking at the AFC East. The Patriots are favored and are the best team in the division. The last time New England didn’t win the division was back in 2008 and they have won it in 10 of the last 11 seasons.
With a bevy of new receivers and an oft-injured defense, the Patriots still finished with a 12-4 record in 2013 while the next closest teams were the Jets and Dolphins both with 8-8 records. It’s going to be difficult for any of these teams to dethrone the Patriots yet again this season.
Odds to win AFC East
courtesy of 5dimes sportsook
New England Patriots -300 (field wins +250)
Miami Dolphins +600
New York Jets +700
Buffalo Bills +1060
The Patriots over/under sits a 10.5 wins at 5dimes, while no other team’s o/u is above 8 wins. The interesting thing about that number is the Patriots look to have a better roster than a year ago. Rob Gronkowski is expected to be ready for Week 1, which is a bit of a surprise, but a good surprise for Patriots fans. They also bulked up on the defensive end with Darrelle Revis, Brandon Browner and Patrick Chung. Many people believe Tom Brady took a step back last year, but if his receivers can stay healthy, there’s no reason why Brady still isn’t one of the best QBs in the league.
The Miami Dolphins have the next best odds to win the division, but aren’t that much better than the Jets. The Dolphins have mostly the same team as a year ago when they won eight Games. Ryan Tannehill leads the offense and many are expecting another jump in performance in his third season. They added RB Knowshon Moreno to the fold, and while picking up an early injury, should be ready for Week 1. He and LAmar Miller will get most of the carries from the start. WR Mike Wallace is expected to bouNCe back after a disappointing first season with the Dolphins and he’s joined by Brian Hartline, TE Charles Clay and a now healthy Brandon Gibson. There’s no reason Tannehill can’t improve if everyone can stay healthy.
Their defense looks is similar to last year’s mildly successful group, but the additions of CB Cortland FinneGAn and FS Louis Delmas will definitely help the secondary.The New York Jets are the next closest challenge to the Pats and they picked up a couple big names in the offseason like running back Chris Johnson and wide receiver Eric Decker. They also added WR Shaq Evans and TE Jace Amaro in the draft and both can make immediate impacts. The question for the Jets will be at quarterback with Geno Smith. Can he really lead this team to becoming significant? The weapons are there for him, but he’ll have newly signed Michael Vick breathing down his neck whenever he messes up.
The New York Jets still have one of the best defensive lines in the Game, but as a team they were mediocre giving up 24.2 points per Game in 2013. The defense will look mostly the same, but with some new faces in the secondary in Dimitri Patterson and Calvin Pryor.
The Buffalo Bills are the last team in this group and it’s unlikely they have a shot at the title. While their defense is mildly respectable, it’s still not a dominant unit that can win the Bills Games by themselves. They added receivers Sammy Watkins and Mike Williams, and hope both of them can help EJ Manuel see a big improvement in his second season. Snagged Fourth overall in the NFL Draft, people are expecting Watkins to do big things. That won’t happen unless Manuel can stay healthy and ACCurate.
The Bills also added RB Bryce Brown, but he’s not expected to do much behind C.J. Spiller and Fred Jackson.
With what looks like an improved Patriots team (as long as they can stay healthy) from a 12-win season, it’s hard to see them slipping up and not winning the AFC East. Brady is still here and there’s no reason why they won’t win another division title.