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2022 Midseason Report: AFC East

For years, this was known as the division between the New England Patriots and everybody else. My how things have changed, as this is the only one of the six divisions in the NFL where each team has a winning record.

The division race just got more interesting with the New York Jets upsetting first-place Buffalo. Now the Bills are a half-game ahead of both the Jets and Miami Dolphins and 1½ games up on New England.

2022 Midseason Report: AFC East
Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills - Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

The Dolphins have won three games in a row and the offense is clicking, led by quarterback Tua Tagovailoa and receiver Tyreek Hill.

The Bills have another tough test, playing the 7-1 Minnesota Vikings. With the Jets and Patriots have a bye week and Miami facing Cleveland, could there be a three-way tie atop the division standings when the weekend is over?

According to the NFL playoff odds, the Buffalo Bills have the best odds to win the Super Bowl.

Let’s check the latest NFL picks, stats, injury reports, and NFL predictions. We’ve plenty of NFL expert picks for you to consider.

Bills (6-2)

  • Odds to win AFC East -550
  • Odds to win AFC +160
  • Odds to win Super Bowl +350
  • Odds to make playoffs Yes -N/A / No N/A

The Bills’ odds to win the Super Bowl haven’t changed much in the last few weeks, going from +375 to +350. We’ll see what happens if quarterback Josh Allen is forced to miss time after injuring his elbow in the loss to the Jets.

The Bills added running back Nyheim Hines at the trading deadline. He’s not going to be a player who spends much time running between the tackles, but his ability to catch the ball could prove to be beneficial.

Buffalo scored 21 and 17 points in the two losses, so that is the side of the ball that needs to become more consistent in the second half of the season.

Buffalo has allowed the fewest points in the NFL and has the best point differential so there aren’t too many worries when it comes to the defensive side of the ball.

Dolphins (6-3)

  • Odds to win AFC East +500
  • Odds to win AFC +1100
  • Odds to win Super Bowl +2200
  • Odds to make playoffs Yes N/A / No N/A

The Dolphins got off to a 3-0 start that included a win over Buffalo under first-year coach Mike McDaniel. However, things got a little more complicated following an injury to starting quarterback Tagovailoa with back-to-back losses.

Tagovailoa is back and has completed 70% of his passes for 945 yards with seven touchdowns and no interceptions during Miami’s current three-game winning streak. Receivers Hill and Jaylen Waddle have combined for 43 catches, 602 yards and four TDs over those three contests. With the passing game trending in the right direction, Miami’s odds to win the Super Bowl have moved from +3300 to +2200.

Miami has allowed 59 points over the last two weeks against mediocre Chicago and Detroit teams so that is a cause for concern, as is the number of injuries in the secondary with safety Brandon Jones out for the rest of the season. Cornerback Byron Jones could make his season debut soon.

Running back Raheem Mostert was held to 26 yards in the last game and hasn’t done much in the previous four games.

Offseason acquisition Melvin Ingram has three sacks but Miami is looking for more of a pass rush from the defensive line.

Jets (6-3)

  • Odds to win AFC East +1800
  • Odds to win AFC +3300
  • Odds to win Super Bowl +6000
  • Odds to make playoffs Yes N/A / No N/A

How many people had the New York Jets with wins over the Green Bay Packers, Denver Broncos, Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills through the first nine games of the season? Those who bet online are taking notice as the odds to win the Super Bowl have gone from +15000 to +6000 in recent weeks.

Losing rookie running back Breece Hall hurts, and the ceiling is somewhat limited with this offense until second-year quarterback Zach Wilson is able to make more throws down the field. Still, a 6-3 start has been one of the biggest surprises in the NFL.

The Jets recently acquired running back James Robinson from the Jaguars following Hall’s injury. He had 13 carries in last week’s win over Buffalo.

Cornerback Ahmad Gardner is emerging as the front-runner in the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year race and fellow rookie Garrett Wilson leads the Jets with 42 catches and 521 receiving yards.

Quinnen Williams is having a huge season with seven sacks while Jordan Whitehead and Gardner have brought more physicality to the secondary.

Patriots (5-4)

2022 Midseason Report: AFC East
Hunter Henry #85 of the New England Patriots – Maddie Malhotra/Getty Images/AFP
  • Odds to win AFC East +2500
  • Odds to win AFC +3300
  • Odds to win Super Bowl +5000
  • Odds to make playoffs Yes N/A / No N/A

This team was being written off after a 1-3 start and the naysayers returned after a head-scratching 33-14 loss to Chicago. However, the Patriots looked like a team to be reckoned with following wins against the New York Jets and Indianapolis Colts.

Rookie Bailey Zappe did more than just keep the seat warm while starting quarterback Mac Jones was sidelined. Since Jones returned, he has acted more like a game manager with 341 passing combined passing yards over the last two games.

With Damien Harris sidelined, second-year back Rhomandre Stevenson has flourished as he leads the Patriots with 618 rushing yards. The running lanes have been harder to come by in the last few weeks as teams are willing to dare the Patriots to throw the ball.

An injury to DeVante Parker isn’t going to help the passing game.

Matthew Judon leads the NFL with 11½ sacks while four different players have at least two interceptions. The Patriots have three defensive touchdowns.

After the bye week, the combined record of the next three opponents is 19-6 so things could be a bit challenging moving forward.

The Patriots won 17 of 19 AFC East titles before the Buffalo Bills won in 2020 and repeated as division winners in 2021. The Patriots are in last place but very much in playoff contention. New England’s odds to win the Super Bowl have gone from +8000 to +5000 according to the Las Vegas odds over the last month.

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