New England Patriots (6-2 SU, 4-4 ATS, 4-4 O/U) vs. Denver Broncos (3-5 SU, 2-5-1 ATS, 5-3 O/U)
NFL: Sunday, November 11, 2017, Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, Colorado, 8:30 pm ET
Spread: New England -7.5; Over/Under: 46
It’s an AFC matchup in primetime on NBC’s Sunday Night Football in the Mile High City in week 10 of the NFL slate. The New England Patriots are on the road as they travel to face the Denver Broncos Sunday night. New England is coming off a bye last week: they beat the Chargers 21-13 at home in their last contest back on October 29. Denver lost their fourth straight as they were waxed 51-23 on the road by the Eagles last Sunday. The Broncos have a 26-21 edge in the all-time regular season series between the teams though New England took a 16-3 win here in the last meeting on December 18, 2016.
New England Patriots Seek to Keep Rolling
New England had a tougher time than they may have expected but managed to put away a gritty San Diego team in their last game before the bye. During the bye week, the Bills and Dolphins both lost, allowing the Patriots to maintain sole possession of first place in the AFC East. New England rolled up a 414-349 edge in total yards, racked up 27 first downs to Los Angeles’s 16 and ground the clock as they held a hefty 36:59 to 23:01 edge in time of possession. The Patriots also forced the game’s only turnover and picked up a safety on a botched punt return.
The Patriots lead the league in passing offense with 302.1 yards per game through the air and stand 16th in rushing with 109 yards a contest on the ground. New England is 7th in the league in scoring offense as they put up 27 points per contest and is tied for 16th by allowing 22.4 points per game. Tom Brady has completed 206 of 309 passes for 2,541 yards with 16 touchdowns against two interceptions though he’s been sacked 21 times. Mike Gillislee leads the team in rushing with 98 carries for 355 yards and four scores. It’s running back by committee though as Dion Lewis (58 carries, 271 yards, two TD, 10 receptions), James White (28 carries, 120 yards, team-high 43 receptions) and Rex Burkhead (15 carries, 64 yards, 12 catches) are all in the mix as well. Rob Gronkowski (34 catches, 509 yards, five TD), Chris Hogan (33 receptions, 438 yards, five scores), Brandin Cooks (33 grabs, 563 yards, three TD) and Danny Amendola (31 catches, 338 yards, TD) provide a plethora of targets in the passing game. Stephen Gostkowski has booted 20 of 21 extra points and 20 of 23 field goal attempts with a long of 58.
Denver Broncos Reeling
Denver was obliterated on the road in Philadelphia as the quarterback change had no positive effect for the team. Instead, the Broncos suffered a fourth straight loss and dropped to 3-5 on the year, putting them tied for the basement in the AFC West. Denver was down 17-3 after the opening quarter and 31-9 at the half: things were pretty well decided by that point in time. The Broncos were outgained 419-226, gave up 25 first downs while picking up 14 and turned the ball over twice while forcing only one takeaway. Granted, the takeaway was a scoop six but the score was 51-16 at that point: Denver didn’t get in the end zone until just over nine minutes remained and the team trailed by 42.
The Broncos enter this contest 19th in the league in passing offense with 214.9 yards per contest and 14th in rushing with an average of 112.4 yards per game. Denver is tied for 22nd in the league in scoring offense with an average of 18.8 points per game and stand tied for 25th in scoring defense as they allow 24.8 points per contest. Trevor Siemian is 152 of 247 passing for 1,669 yards with nine touchdowns and 10 picks while getting sacked 25 times. Brock Osweiler, in his second tour of duty with the team, is 21 of 42 for 226 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. C.J. Anderson leads the Broncos in the ground game with 116 carries for 482 yards plus a score. Jamaal Charles has kicked in 54 carries for 236 yards plus a score on the year. Emmanuel Sanders is second on the team, having caught 26 passes for 296 yards plus two scores while Demaryius Thomas has a team-leading 43 receptions for 525 yards and a score this season. Brandon McManus has hit all 15 extra points and 13 of 18 field goal attempts with a long of 53.
- Patriots are 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games overall
- Patriots are 5-1 ATS in their last six on the road
- Broncos are 1-5 ATS in their last six games overall
Denver has self-destructed over the past month: going back to week 3, they’ve dropped five of six games and it took two garbage time touchdowns against the Eagles to break the 20 point barrier for the first time since week 2. Osweiler fared no better than Siemian under center Sunday and who knows who will be under center for this one. New England is rested and ready to go after having the bye last week. The Patriots are a well-oiled machine and this one shouldn’t be an issue for them. Look for the Patriots to roll to victory here, even on the road.
Pick: New England Patriots -7.5
Denver has been dismal during their four game losing skid as they’ve been outscored 124-52 in that span. The Broncos just finished a three game road trip 0-3: it marked the ninth time in franchise history the team played three straight road contests. Denver has never finished better than 1-2 in a stretch like that in their history. New England is rested and ready to go after the bye. It came at a good time as it allowed some of their walking wounded to rest up and get back to some semblance of normalcy. Can Vance Joseph get the Broncos back on track or is it already too late?
New England has gone under the total in each of their last four games but coming off a bye and getting healthier, you have to think that they may be primed for a breakout. The Broncos just got blown up by the Eagles and you know Bill Belichick will have his team studying the film to see what worked for Philadelphia that he can utilize. The teams have gone over the total in six of the last nine meetings: look for the Patriots’ offense to help push this one past the number.