- With a record of 4-6, the Atlanta Falcons are last in the NFC South, but still looking to secure a wildcard.
- At 2-8, the Jacksonville Jaguars are last in the AFC South and 30th in the NFL.
- All-time, the Falcons are 4-3 in the series with the most recent game in 2019 resulting in a Falcons win, 24-12
The Atlanta Falcons have had a bit of a disappointing year. They are 4-6, and while they can try to make a playoff push, the odds are good they will be pushed out of the playoffs.
The Falcons have had disappointing losses to the Eagles, Buccaneers, and humiliating losses at the hands of the Cowboys and Patriots. On average, they lose every game they play by about 11 points.
Their one actual bright spot is Kyle Pitts, who, despite a slow start, has looked like he will be a Falcon’s generational cornerstone for years to come.
On the other side, the Jaguars’ overall number one selection has had a rocky season. There have been hugely promising moments, but Lawrence currently ranks 31st in completion percentage and, except for Justin Fields, has the worst first-round rookie QBR.
Falcons vs Jaguars Matchup at a Glance
- Sport: NFL
- Teams: Atlanta Falcons at Jacksonville Jaguars
- Where: Jacksonville, Florida at TIAA Bank Field
- Date: November 28th, 1:00 pm
- Betting Odds: ATL -1, ATL -120, JAX +100, and OU 47
Falcons Preview: Flight of the Flailing Falcons
Through the first nine weeks of the NFL season, the Falcons battled their way out of an 0-2 start to get back to .500. With the way the NFC had played out, they looked like they could potentially claw their way into a wildcard position.
However, one major roadblock lay ahead of them: the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys would be a good measuring stick for Atlanta to see how they measured up to the class of the NFC. After a 3-43 loss, the Falcons surely knew where they stood.
Then, after a short week, the Falcons took on the Patriots at home and got a similar result, a 0-25 loss (the difference in the now-iconic 28-3 lead that the Falcons had in Superbowl LI).
With the Falcons now 4-6, and a schedule that features Tampa Bay, the Buffalo Bills, New Orleans Saints, and San Fransico 49ers, the Falcons are certainly on the outside looking in and need this win to get back into the playoff picture.
Jaguars Preview: Journey of the Joyless Jags
Unlike the Atlanta Falcons, the Jacksonville Jaguars had no playoff ambitions this season. It was the start of Urban Meyers’ NFL career and Trevor Lawrences’, and they lost first-round selection Travis Etienne before the season even started.
The Jaguars have certainly lived up to expectations, going 2-8 this season, with a last-second field goal win over the Miami Dolphins and a strange upset of the Buffalo Bills, 9-6.
As I said earlier, Lawrence has not looked like the best QB prospect since Andrew Luck, but to be fair, he has had to play in an offense that at times has essentially stifled his growth.
Being surrounded by bad pieces on a scheme that may not be the best will do that to you.
I am certainly not ready to pull the trigger on Lawrence being a bust (Peyton Manning threw 28 interceptions in his rookie season). I think he is performing well, considering his circumstances.
Odds & Free Betting Analysis for This NFL Game
As soon as I check the spread on my weekly assignments, I always look at teams records against the spread (ATS). I think you can learn just as much from a team’s record ATS as you can a team’s NFL record. The Falcons are currently 4-6 ATS, which matches their NFL record. To me, that says that vegas have a fair handle on how the Falcons are going to do in a given matchup.
Much like the Falcons, the Jaguars are 4-6 ATS, which again says that Vegas has a reasonably good handle on what to expect from the Jaguars. Looking more specifically, at home and road splits, the Falcons are 3-2 on the road while the Jaguars are 1-5 at home. That to me says take the Falcons to beat the spread. From a statistical perspective, the Jaguars boast the (slightly) better offense than the Falcons.
According to Lineups.com, my go-to for team stats and rankings, the Jaguars are ranked 19th while the Falcons are ranked 25th. The Jaguars are a relatively poor team overall, but their redeeming qualities are that they rank 8th in 4th down %, seventh in turnovers, and sixth in sacks allowed. The Falcons are a better red zone and passing team but a much worse rushing team.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Falcons rank 31st while the Jaguars are tied for 24th. The Jaguars are a good passing defense team, allowing the third least passing touchdowns and the 17th passing yards. They also rank 12th in first downs. The Falcons, meanwhile, really struggle across the board, and they seldom force interceptions and struggle to limit anyone in either running or passing. Because of that, I honestly like the Jaguars. I think the fact that they can limit passing is a significant boost against the Falcons, and the Falcons are likely to struggle running the ball as they have an overall poor attack.
I would expect the Jaguars to use James Robinson to run the ball aggressively against the Falcons, as their defense ranks 22nd in rushing yards while ranking 25th in rushing attempts. I do not feel comfortable picking the Jaguars, and it says a lot about the Falcons that I would even consider doing so, but I am taking Jacksonville.
Falcons vs Jaguars Pick
- KnupSports.com Free Betting Pick: Falcons 17 Jaguars 21
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