Tennessee Titans at New England Patriots
- Spread: Titans +5
- Over/Under: 44
- Sat, 8:15 PM
I’m not buying the narrative that says Brady is washed.
It’s just not true. His numbers aren’t stellar, but he doesn’t have the weapons he normally does. He’s never been a big arm and has always relied on precision and timing. That’s not a knock, that’s a compliment because those things take discipline, instinct, and repetition until the sort of plays he makes become second nature. Only, he doesn’t have a quality skill player beyond Julian Edelman who is maybe a top end WR2.
Going back to the Super Bowl against the Rams teams have found ways to clog up New England’s bread and butter plays because they no longer have Gronkowski as a security blanket. It’s really hard to just beat a 3rd and 12 situation when you have mediocre receivers running routes. I don’t care if Tom Brady is elected to the Hall of Fame three times over he’s not going to be able to just carry this offense when it’s stocked with guys who would have a hard time latching on elsewhere.
Tennessee is one of my favorite stories of the year.
They finally bench Mariotta who always looks like he’s afraid of taking chances or getting hit and go with Ryan Tannehill who has been on fire since getting the starting job. How long was Tannehill considered a borderline bust? Well, now that he’s injury free he’s slinging the ball all over the field, he’s got Derrick Henry to hand off to, a halfway decent line, and tall, rangy receivers to throw to. However, there’s a reason they’re a five point dog and it’s because they’re still young, inconsistent, and capable of turnovers. Fluky things like Tannehill throwing a chance pick six are still possible. And they still sometimes have to bank on Henry ripping off two 70 yard runs to secure a game. Also, I am imagining Bill and his guys on defense throwing some insane wrinkles at Tannehill to try and throw him off his game.
That’s why in the end, I think the Pats win this one while the Titans probably keep it close. I’d like to see the spread close to seven. But there’s nothing that compels me to jump on the Pats covering any more than three except for their historic performance over the long haul. As of Thursday, 59 percent of spread bets and 58 percent of the money is on the Pats.
I get it. You have every reason to back them since Brad and Bill break every betting model out there. But this is one of those rare cases where my gut and brain both say to fade the Patriots. Even though it makes me feel a little queasy. See how long you can wait on this and maybe the public drives the number up. Regardless, if you’re taking the Pats, I won’t blame you. It’s almost impossible to bet against them.
THE PICK: Titans +5 at Draftkings Sportsbook.
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