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NFL Betting Opinion – The Perfect Misconception, Patriots Analysis
The New England Patriots may be the proud owner’s of the league’s first undefeated 16-0 regular season, but they could very well see their season come to a screeching halt against the rejuvenated San Diego Chargers who are playing their best football of the season – and possess the best defensive front seven in all of football.
Despite their NFL-record 589 points and quarterback Tom Brady’s NFL-record 50 touchdown passes, not to mention wide receiver Randy Moss’ league-record 23 touchdown catches, the Patriots will be facing a Chargers defense that has allowed a miniscule 13.1 points per game in their last eight contests – all victories – while forcing 26 turnovers and recording 26 sacks.
Not only are the Chargers playing spectacular defense at the moment, but the addition of wide receiver Chris Chambers has lifted the offense to new heights as well, opening the field up more for perennial Pro bowlers LaDainian Tomlinson and tight end Antonio Gates.
While the Patriots will be entering the game fully healthy for all intents and purposes, the Chargers are coming into the contest with a few players suffering some nicks and dings, including Tomlinson, Gates and starting quarterback Phillip Rivers who was injured and replaced in San Diego’s 28-24 divisional win over the Indianapolis Colts last week.
Rivers was 14-of-19 for 264 yards with three touchdowns and one interception when he was injured, but the Chargers have to be feeling good about the performance of veteran backup Billy Volek who led the Chargers to a surprising victory that he capped off by running for the winning touchdown.
For the Patriots and head coach Bill Belichick, this game will be business as usual – except for the fact that Randy Moss recently created some more off-field drama by allegedly striking a Florida woman in her home.
Here is a look at tonight’s Key Trends, followed by my NFL Gambling Free Picks:
Key Chargers Trends
The Chargers are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games following a S.U. win.
The Chargers are 4-0 ATS in their last four road games.
The Chargers are 7-0 ATS in their last seven games following a ATS win.
Key Patriots Trends
The Patriots are 4-1 ATS in their last five Conference Championship games.
The Patriots are 8-3-1 ATS in their last 12 playoff home games.
The Patriots are 44-19-2 ATS in their last 65 games after accumulating more than 350 total yards in their previous game.
Key Totals Trends
The Over is 4-0-1 in Chargers last five games as a road underdog.
The Under is 4-0-2 in Chargers last six games after allowing less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game.
The Over is 5-1-1 in Patriots last seven games after allowing less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game.
The Under is 9-2-1 in Patriots last 12 playoff home games.
Key Head-to-Head Trends
The Over is 4-0 in the last four meetings in New England.
The Over is 5-2 in the last seven meetings.
The Chargers are 2-5 ATS in their last seven meetings.
Analysis: While the Chargers’ defense is very special and clearly good enough to keep them in any contest, I’m thinking the outcome of this contest will depend on the performance of either Rivers or Volek. If either quarterback can play mistake-free football, the Chargers will have a chance. At the very least, I still say take the Chargers to cover the insanely high point spread. Their defense is far too good for them to get blown out – unless Rivers or Volek goes into ‘three-interception mode’. Take the Chargers to cover easily.
NFL Free Picks: Patriots 24 Chargers 21
03:00 PM EST NFL Point Spreads
San Diego Chargers +13½ -115
New England Patriots -13½ -115
Over 49 -110
Under 49 -110
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