The NFL won’t have their second-ever 0-16 team as the New York Jets upset the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. The 0-13 Jets were 17-point underdogs against the 9-4 Rams, who needed to win to stay atop the NFC West standings. The Jets built a big lead on Sunday and held on for a 23-20 win as the Rams fell behind the Seattle Seahawks in the standings.
The win snapped the longest losing streak in Jets franchise history at 13 games and came a week after they lost 40-3 to Seattle. The win is the second largest point-spread upset in the Super Bowl era behind only Super Bowl III in 1969 when the 18-point underdog Jets beat the Baltimore Colts.
Quarterback Sam Darnold completed 22-of-31 passes for 207 yards and a touchdown without turning the ball over. As a result, the Jets no longer control their own destiny to the No. 1 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft. The 1-13 Jacksonville Jaguars hold the tiebreaker over the Jets on the strength of schedule. Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence is widely expected to be the top pick in the 2021 draft.
The Jets will need another double-digit underdog win next week to make it two wins in a row. They will host the 10-4 Cleveland Browns, who opened -10.5. The Browns can end their own streak next week against the Jets as a win puts Cleveland in the playoffs for the first time in 17 years.
The Rams, meanwhile, will need to bounce back quickly. They are now a game behind Seattle in the NFC West, but they travel to Seattle next week. A win gives the Rams a season sweep and the tiebreakers as both teams would be 10-5 with one game left. Seattle opened at -2.5.
NFC East Race Remains Wide Open
The NFC East went 1-3 in Week 15, and all four teams are still in the division title race. The Washington Football Team leads the division at 6-8 after losing to Seattle at home on Sunday. They opened -2 against Carolina for next Sunday’s game and would clinch the division with a win and a loss by the New York Giants.
The Giants are 5-9 after losing to the Cleveland Browns Sunday night. They are 10-point underdogs at Baltimore next week, with the Ravens needing the win to stay in the AFC playoff race.
Meanwhile, the Dallas Cowboys have won two games in a row for the first time in more than a year. The 5-9 Cowboys were swept by Washington, so they must win out and have WFT lose both games. Dallas hosts Philadelphia (-1.5) on Sunday before finishing at the Giants. The Eagles (4-9-1) have to win out against Dallas and Washington while the Giants lose at least once.
Washington’s loss to Seattle on Sunday assured that the NFC East champion would not have a winning record. The best any team can do is 8-8 with WFT, while the Giants and Cowboys can be no better than 7-9. Whoever wins the division will host an NFC playoff game as the No. 4 seed, likely facing either Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers or the NFC West runner up between the Seahawks and Rams.