As our community here in Las Vegas begins its healing process, many will set out to go to their favorite sports book or sports bar to watch the Thursday night game.
This week New England faces Tampa Bay and while Tom Brady might have his sight on matching greats like Brett Favre and Peyton Manning with his 186th victory, he might be more mindful of the reality that if the Pats do not rebound after their loss last week to the Carolina Panthers, they will have a losing record of 2-3, and fall under the Jets in the standings.
Yes, the Jets! The New York are neck and neck in the AFC East standings with a similar record as the Patriots of 2-2. For that reason alone, I think the Patriots will come out fired up to rebound, but it’s not wise to underestimate Tampa Bay. If the Bucs win, they will be right there with Atlanta at 3-1, so needless to say there’s a lot on the line this week.
Speaking of lines, the Pats are -5.5 and while I am not one to bet against Tom, who is arguably one of the best clutch quarterbacks ever, I am not sure I would be comfortable betting either side. The way I see it, this game can go either way, and I’m going to take a look at the total.
The Patriots are averaging 32 points a game, which is not too shabby but the problem is they average giving up the same amount. Tampa Bay on the other hand has averaged under 25 per game, and but has also done a better job on defense holding opponents to 21 a game.
Look for a more even matchup, that could settle somewhere right around the total of 56. If you want to bet the game, consider the predicted total of 33-21 or 33-24 as very likely outcomes.
As for the side perhaps it’s time to check out those teasers, reverse teasers and manipulate the numbers a bit. This total looks to be on the mark. If you do not feel comfortable with a game, remember there’s always the option to stay away. I say the game is truly a toss-up. Something to consider though, is that the Patriots lost opening night on Thursday Night Football. It might not seem like a big deal, but it’s doubtful that the Patriots will want to have another poor showing during primetime. They should come out on top, just not sure if it will be by more than 5.
Thursday night’s best bet might just be the Red Sox over Houston! Take your time, do your homework and good luck!