Time To Give Up On The New England Patriots?
19 November 2020
Fans had two dominant feelings about the New England Patriots coming into the season. Those who were fans of the team were eager to see their team continue to thrive even though Tom Brady had left town.
But fans of the 31 other NFL teams wanted to see the Brady-less Patriots fail.
In their minds, it was time for the Patriots to see what life in the back of the pack. So, when the team fell to 2-5 with a close loss to the Buffalo Bills in Week Eight, many rejoiced.
For once, it appeared that Bill Belichick had let someone go too soon.
Fans had high hopes for what former MVP Cam Newton could bring to the table. At first, he looked fantastic. But then he missed time while on the Covic-19 list, and things just have not gotten back on track.
But as they fell, the Buffalo Bills (7-3) and Miami Dolphins (6-3) began to rise. Both now look like legitimate contenders for the AFC East crown. The odds are now firmly behind the Bills winning the division (-334; odds via PointsBet.com), but there is still hope for the Dolphins (+300).
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Hope is in short supply for the Patriots, however (+1400), and then there are the Jets (+100000). According to those odds, New England has a 6.67 percent chance of winning the AFC East. Two weeks ago, when they were just 2-5, that sounded about right.
Heck, after the come-from-behind win over the Jets, it seemed high.
Then they dominated the Baltimore Ravens for the win last week and improved to 4-5.
Yes, that is still a losing record, but what is important is how well they played on both sides of the ball against an excellent Ravens team. Could it be that things are coming together for them finally?
Did the Patriots just need the first half of the season to get things figured out?
Best Sportsbooks For This Pick
New England Patriots on The Verge Of Making A Move?
Expectations skyrocketed for the New England Patriots after the first two games of the season. Cam Newton looked good in the season opener against Miami despite not being with the team for long. The following week he looked fantastic in what was almost a win against the Seattle Seahawks.
At that point, it looked like the team was not going to skip a beat without Tom Brady. Belichick got another MVP to run the offense, and things were fine—until they were not.
Newton’s time on the Covid-19 list did not help things. But even when he came back, it was clear that the offense needed work, which was okay. With a new starting quarterback, an offense is going to need time to work out the kinks. They are going to need to figure out how to make things work and how to get on the same page.
Against the Ravens last week, it looked like they did just that. If they can keep the momentum going against the Houston Texans this week, they can improve to 5-5. With six games remaining, they would then need to win at least four to get into the playoffs as a wildcard.
They should beat the Los Angeles Chargers (Week 13) and New York Jets (Week 17). If the Patriots are lucky, they might be able to ride the momentum from a two-game winning streak into a third consecutive win over the Cardinals.
But with how Kyler Murray is playing, they will need a lot of luck.
The Rams are not going to be any easier in Week 14, and with how the Dolphins and Tua Tagovailoa are playing, they are going to be tough to beat as well. The same can be said about Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills.
Are the Patriots Worth Betting On?
Buffalo will probably not lose enough for the Patriots to have a legitimate shot at the division title. However, with three wildcards in each conference this year, the playoffs are still a definite possibility. But they will probably need at least nine wins to have a shot.
Of their remaining seven, they probably beat the Texans, Chargers, and Jets but not the Cardinals, Rams, Dolphins, or Bills. That would give them a 7-9 record, which will certainly not be enough in the AFC.
An 8-8 record could be enough, but 9-7 would probably do the trick. The Patriots odds of making the playoffs (via PointsBet.com) are +375. Is the payout from taking that bet worth crossing your fingers and hoping they can steal two wins down the stretch?
Betting Play: The Patriots to miss the playoffs (-500).
Travis a native-Texan which is where his love of football originated. But after moving around a lot when he was younger, he was able to develop an appreciation for the game and not just his favorite teams. He now lives in Indiana with his wife, Nicole, and two kids, Jackson and Addison. You can find him on Twitter at @FatManWriting.