NFL Week 5 Picks: Time For The Underdogs To Take Over

JJ Watt

New York Jets (+7)* at San Diego Chargers

The New York Jets and San Diego Chargers are exactly what their numbers indicate. The 1-3 Jets are a below average football team who allow exactly 24 points and scores roughly 20 points per game (in reality, they have only broken the 20-point barrier once). The 3-1 Chargers, impressively sitting atop the AFC West, have exactly one loss by exactly one point.

If ‘must-win games’ exist in the first half of an NFL season, the Denver Broncos looming in the Jets’ schedule makes their matchup in San Diego as a critical a matchup as a 1-3 team could play. However, the Chargers are tracking the same Denver team, although in a different battle — the AFC West division race. If the Chargers want to keep their feet on the gas pedal, the Jets are, statistically, the worst non-division team San Diego will face in their next six games. They need a win on Sunday to stay ahead of the Broncos as badly as the Jets need a win to stay alive.

As evident by their ability to play one-possession games with their opponents — albeit, losing three of four — the Jets’ defense should prevent the Chargers from pulling away. In addition, getting away from the brutal New York media and fanbase might actually help the Jets, as every Geno Smith pass that hits the grass will not be followed by a parade of boos and chants for Michael Vick.

San Diego holds off the desperation of the Jets and wins by a field goal, but New York beats the spread.

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Mario Mergola
Mario Mergola is a writer, avid sports fan, former ESPN Radio producer, husband, and father who specializes in finding the hidden gems of the less-explored option. Follow @MarioMergola