zach wilson
Syndication: The Record

ESNY previews the upcoming Jets-Buccaneers Week 17 matchup at MetLife Stadium.

The Jets vs. Tom Brady: part 1,000 (it seems).

But this time, the longtime quarterback and future Hall of Famer is in a Buccaneers uniform.

Brady and Tampa Bay travel to MetLife Stadium to take on the Jets this Sunday afternoon. Both teams have something to play for despite the fact New York has been mathematically eliminated from postseason contention for the 11th straight year.

The Bucs are the fourth seed in the NFC but could still clinch the top spot in the conference. The Jets, on the other hand, could construct a winning streak following last week’s victory over Jacksonville and form significant momentum down this final stretch.

Zach Wilson defeating a quarterback that’s twice his age — yes, you read that right — would be an incredible feat for the rookie signal-caller.

Robert Saleh also shutting Brady down would be a memorable achievement for him in what’s been an up-and-down first year as the Jets head coach.

Game Info

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11-4) @ New York Jets (4-11)
Sunday, Jan. 2, 2021 — 1:00 PM ET
TV: FOX
Radio: ESPN NY 98.7FM

Jets’ Final Injury Report

Doubtful

  • WR Jamison Crowder (Calf)

Buccaneers’ Final Injury Report

Questionable

  • CB Jamel Dean (Illness)
  • CB Sean Murphy-Bunting (Illness)
  • WR Mike Evans (Hamstring)
  • WR Justin Watson (Quad)
  • S Antoine Winfield Jr. (Foot)
  • WR Antonio Brown (Ankle)

Doubtful

  • CB Richard Sherman (Achilles)

Out

  • EDGE Jason Pierre-Paul (Shoulder)
  • EDGE Shaquil Barrett (Knee)

Betting Info

Odds

Buccaneers: -13.5 // O45.5 // -800

Jets: +13.5 // U45.5 // +550

Notable Game Props
(Courtesy DraftKings Sportsbook)

  • Jets Total Points: Over-15.5 (-125), Under-15.5 (-105)
  • Buccaneers Total Points: Over-29.5 (-120), Under-29.5 (-110)
  • First Team to Score: Jets (+160), Buccaneers (-200)
  • Last Team to Score: Jets (+165), Buccaneers (-210)

Player Prop Picks (Courtesy DraftKings Sportsbook)

Zach Wilson Under-202.5 Passing Yards (-115)

Quarterback Zach Wilson won’t have Corey Davis or Elijah Moore by his side. Jamison Crowder isn’t expected to play either.

Taking that into consideration along with Wilson’s struggles this season (he’s averaging just 183.0 passing yards per game), taking the under on the rookie’s passing-yard total is a safe bet.

Wilson has only surpassed the above total in four of 11 games this season.

Ronald Jones Over-73.5 Rushing Yards (-115)

I expect the Buccaneers to be leading for a significant portion of this game given their advantage in talent. The Jets run defense is also tied for 30th in the NFL with 141.3 rushing yards allowed per game.

Thus, there’s a good chance Tampa Bay running back Ronald Jones will surpass 73.5 yards on the ground, especially since Leonard Fournette is on injured reserve with a hamstring injury.

Keelan Cole Over-3.5 Receptions (+190)

No Corey Davis. No Elijah Moore. Jamison Crowder is doubtful.

Veteran receiver Keelan Cole could be a notable factor in this game and earn a significant number of targets. The +190 odds on him reeling in at least four receptions are intriguing despite the fact he’s only achieved that feat once this year.

Odds and prop bets courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook. Get up to $1,050 with a deposit bonus and free bet when you click here.

Players to Watch

Zach Wilson

We say it almost every week — one of the main goals for the Jets this year was (and still is) to see development out of their rookie quarterback.

Zach Wilson has an opportunity to impress against a below-average Buccaneers secondary (21st with 242.1 passing yards allowed per game).

A win over Tom Brady and co. would surely be a memorable moment in the rookie campaign of the 2021 No. 2 overall draft pick.

RB Michael Carter

With Corey Davis done for the year, Jamison Crowder dealing with a calf injury, and Elijah Moore on injured reserve, rookie running back Michael Carter will need to be an integral component of the Jets’ passing attack.

Carter’s success in that area would surely take pressure off Wilson, who is likely to deal with a Buccaneers pass rush looking to provide him with minimal time to operate.

Ahead of Week 17, Carter is fourth on the team with 35 receptions.

Jets Pass Rush

The Jets cannot allow Tom Brady with any time to operate in the pocket — I’m pretty sure this organization knows that better than anyone else.

John Franklin-Myers and the rest of the front seven need to disrupt Brady’s timing and prevent him from going through his progressions.

If not, the future Hall of Fame quarterback will surely dial it up.

Follow Ryan Honey on Twitter: @RyanHoneyESNY

Listen to ESNY’s Wide Right Podcast on Apple here or on Spotify here.

Ryan Honey is a senior NFL analyst, betting writer, and podcaster for Elite Sports NY. He hosts the Wide Right Podcast, which serves as both a New York Giants podcast and sports betting show.