NFL predictions for the rest of the season: Jaguars and Lions on the rise, Bills slipping


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As we move into Week 10 of the NFL season, we’ll take a look at how good (or bad) each team is, where their flaws lie, and who is in a good position to make the playoffs, or perhaps a deep playoff run.

So, let’s take a look at three teams as we head into the regular season and compare them to their overall preseason (and postseason) expectations.

All predictions from Austin Mock’s NFL Prediction Model, which simulates the NFL season 10,000 times each week. All odds from BetMGM.

Rising groups

Jacksonville Jaguars

Preliminaries to win: 10.5

Projected wins: 11

Playoff odds: -1600 yes, +900 no

Odds of winning the Super Bowl: 3.9%

The Jaguars are one of the hottest teams in football heading into Week 10, and everything seems to be falling into place for them.

The Jaguars are not only a great team with a strong young core, but they are also playing in the right division. for now. No one in the AFC South is within two games of them, but they swept the two games against the Indianapolis Colts and own that tie.

Austin Mock’s NFL Predictions Model gives them a 72 percent chance of winning the division, their remaining schedule is just 20th against opponents, their toughest games against an average Tampa Bay team and two games against a Titans team with a starting quarterback.

Detroit Lions

Preseason Win Total: 9.5

Projected wins: 11.7

Playoff odds: Yes -10000, No +1800

Super Bowl win: 7.4%

Few teams in the NFL are in better shape right now than the Lions.

Not only are they 6-2 this season and 14-4 over their last 18 games, not only do they go back to last season, but they are in a completely favorable position regarding their division and the rest of their schedule.

The closest competitor to the Lions in the NFC North is the Minnesota Vikings team, which is a playoff and halfback. And while the Vikings will be getting wide receiver Justin Jefferson in the near future, the quarterback situation without Kirk Cousins ​​will be fine. The rest of the Lions’ opponents own a .442 winning percentage, which gives them the fourth-softest remaining schedule. Austin Mock’s NFL Projection Model gives them a 91.3 percent chance of winning the NFC North, the second-highest division odds in football.

Philadelphia Eagles

Preliminaries to win: 10.5

Projected wins: 11.7

Playoff odds: Yes -10000, No +1800

Super Bowl win: 18.3%

For the second year in a row, the Eagles look to be midway through the season with the league’s best record and one of the league’s best teams. Sunday’s win over Dallas gave them a commanding lead in the NFC East (mainly because they currently own the gap over the Cowboys with a three-game lead) and sent them into the bye week looking like odds-on favorites to decline. It won just the NFC East (89.6 percent) but won the NFC (18.3 percent) for the second straight year, according to Austin Mock’s NFL projections model.

The Eagles don’t look as dominant on the field as they did a year ago (Jalen Hurts needs to protect the ball more, the pass defense could be better), but they’re still one of the deepest teams in the NFL and a very good one. Not only to protect the NFC bye week, but also make sure the NFC playoff games are played at Lincoln Financial Field.

Falling teams

Buffalo Bills

Preliminaries to win: 10.5

Projected wins: 9.9

Odds to make playoffs: Yes -115, No -105

Super Bowl win: 3.6%

The Bills’ problem is simply a matter of consistency.

Josh Allen and Co. When they’re at their best, they look like a team that can beat anyone in the NFL.

But we don’t always see that version of the Bills, and when they’re not on their game, they look like a team that can be beat by anyone in the NFL.

For every game where Allen dominates and finishes with a 100+ player rating, there’s another game where he struggles to keep the ball and makes head-scratching decisions that can throw him off the field. That volatility can be tough from week to week, and it can be tough in the playoffs, when one bad game can derail your entire season.

The Bills are entering Week 10 with a 5-4 record and the ninth seed in the AFC playoff race. That’s not good. While they still have a good season (59 percent), their AFC East and Super Bowl chances take a hit. Not only do they face inconsistencies, but their remaining schedule currently ranks as the fourth-toughest opponent in the NFL with games against Philadelphia, Kansas City, Miami, Dallas, and the New York Jets defense (which they’ve already won this season) still looming. That’s the gauntlet, and three games (Philadelphia, Miami and Kansas City) are on the road. If three or four of those games are lost, it means seven or eight losses, which would put the playoffs away from a lock.

Miami Dolphins

Preseason Win Total: 9.5

Projected wins: 11

Playoff odds: Yes -700, No +500

Super Bowl win: 5.9%

Miami might be one of the most polarizing teams in the NFL. And it may not be appropriate to include them in this section.

On the one hand, their offensive numbers jump off the page and they can put up 40 points in the blink of an eye on any given week — and especially at home. They are in a good position to make the finals and betting predictions still have them around 11 wins.

It’s a playoff team.

But it’s not a perfect playoff team, and it looks like a step below the best Super Bowl contenders primarily because it can’t beat elite Super Bowl contenders.

It’s not just Miami losing to those teams in head-to-head games. On both sides of the ball in those games, everything is going to be completely disjointed.

Miami’s six wins this season have come against teams with a combined winning percentage of just .275. That’s not only the lowest mark by a team currently in a playoff spot, but the lowest mark of any team in the NFL. Their six wins have come against the Chargers, Patriots (twice), Broncos, a Tyrod Taylor-led Giants team and Carolina. These are the worst teams in football.

In the three losses against Buffalo, Kansas City and Philadelphia? The offense is averaging just 44 points (Miami’s defense allowed seven more points against Philadelphia) while averaging just 14.6 points per game. In the year Heading into 2022, Miami is just 2-9 in 11 games against teams that have made the playoffs (2022) or were in a playoff position when they played this season. Miami will have two chances during the year. Baltimore, Dallas, Buffalo) to try and change the narrative. But until they do, there’s reason to doubt them as serious contenders.

Seattle Seahawks

Preseason winning total: 8.5

Projected wins: 8.8

Playoff odds: Yes -275, No +225

Super Bowl win: 0.9%

The Seahawks played their worst game of the season Sunday at Baltimore, and the second half might not be much better. Five of Seattle’s remaining nine games are on the road, and they still have a tough schedule that features both games against the San Francisco 49ers and matchups against Philadelphia and Dallas.

Betting futures have just eight wins, a 57 percent chance at the playoffs and a 9 percent chance at the NFC West title.

Quarterback Geno Smith took a big step back after his comeback performance a year ago.

Winning those two games against San Francisco won’t be easy if the Seahawks are going to win the NFC West.

(Photo credit: Ray Orr / The Athletic; Photo credit: Gregory Shamus, Tim Nwachukwu and Justin K. Aller / Getty Images)