Things certainly change quickly in the NFL. After week 11 of the NFL season, the Tennessee Titans were 7-3. It looked like Mike Vrabel was once again working his magic out of him and getting the best of a Tennessee team that looked somewhat questionable on paper. On the flip side, the Jacksonville Jaguars were 3-7 at the time. It looked like another losing season for the Jaguars and some were starting to wonder if Trevor Lawrence was being overrated as a prospect. The Titans were -1000 favorites to win the division. The Jaguars who won the division paid out 10 to 1.
Fast forward to now. The Titans went on a four-game losing streak, averaging more than 11 points per game during that span. The opposite was true for jaguars. They won three of four games, scoring nearly 30 points a game in that span. As a result, Jacksonville is within a game of Tennessee. They still have a head-to-head matchup. On top of all that, the Titans are now expected to be without starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill for the remainder of the season.
Jacksonville is now a favorite to win the AFC South
The Titans opened the weeks as light favorites to win the division. However, after the Tannehill news, things quickly changed. Jacksonville is now a -145 favorite to win the AFC South on BetMGM.
Jacksonville is in action Thursday, as they are 2-point underdogs on the road to the New York Jets. It’s certainly a winnable game for the Jaguars, but even with one loss, they’re in a solid position to win the division.
Both Jacksonville and Tennessee still have one game left with the Houston Texans. The Texans have only had one win on the season, but have been extremely troublesome in recent weeks against the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs. Tennessee is just a 3-point favorite over Houston at home this weekend. However, it’s a match that both teams need to win. By now, you should be more comfortable with the Jaguars handling business rather than the Titans with Malik Willis.
The Jaguars have the Jets on Thursday night as already mentioned. Next weekend, the Titans host the Dallas Cowboys. Dallas will be a sizable favorite in that game, especially with Willis in center for the Titans. If you assume that the Titans lose to the Cowboys, then Thursday’s Jacksonville game against the Jets becomes slightly less important.
The split is most likely to boil down to Week 18, where the Titans and Jaguars go head-to-head. Jacksonville will be the home team in that game after beating Tennessee on the road in Week 14. As long as Jacksonville goes into the Week 18 game inside a ranked Titans game, it will be a win and you’re in the situation for the Jaguars. Based on the fact that Tannehill is injured and the Jaguars are at home, it is safe to project the Jaguars as favorites going into that game.
Put all of these factors together and you’ll understand why Jacksonville became the betting favorite to win the division. If the Jaguars beat the Jets Thursday night, they will be in phenomenal form. Of course, crazy things happen in the final weeks of the season. Just last year, these Jaguars ruined Indianapolis’ season in Week 18 when they beat the Colts as underdogs by 14.5 points.
However, if you’re a fan of the Jaguars or own a ticket to bet on the Jaguars to win the division, you’re probably feeling pretty confident right now. It’s absurd to say when just a month ago, these Jaguars were 3-7 and had 10 to 1 odds of winning the division.