A month and a half ago, no one expected the Buffalo Bills and New England Patriots would be playing for control of the AFC East in their Week 13 matchup. But here they are. After a 2-4 start, the Patriots have won six in a row. The Bills have gone 3-3 in their last six games.
If the game was in Gillette Stadium, the Patriots would probably be favored. Instead, it’s in Buffalo, so the Bills are. Here is the rest of the analysis with betting odds for Monday’s game.
Sportsbook Comparison For Patriots Vs. Bills Odds
(American / Decimal)
|NE Spread||BUF Spread||NE Moneyline||BUF Moneyline||Total|
|DraftKings||+3 (-115 / 1.87)||-3 (-105 / 1.95)||+120 / 2.20||-145 / 1.69||42.5|
|BetMGM||+2.5 (-105 / 1.95)||-2.5 (-115 / 1.87)||+125 / 2.25||-145 / 1.69||43|
|PROLINE+||+1.5 (-132 / 1.76)||-1.5 (+110 / 2.10)||+120 / 2.20||-143 / 1.70||44.5|
Patriots Are Stifling Recent Opponents On Defense
After losing to the Dallas Cowboys in Week 6, it looked like the playoffs were going to be out of reach for the Patriots. But New England (8-4 SU, 8-4 ATS) could have easily been 5-1 at that point, with three losses coming by less than a touchdown. Head coach Bill Belichick had the team playing well; the Patriots just needed a few plays to start going their way.
New England started getting a few of those plays in Week 7 and has not stopped getting them.
The defense has dominated opponents, holding five of their last six to 13 points or less. That included a shut-out against the Falcons. Four of those six teams were held to less than 100 yards rushing. Four also failed to throw for 200 yards.
But what may be the most impressive stat in their six-game run is the turnover differential. The defense has forced 17 while the offense has only given the ball up four times. On the offensive side of the ball, quarterback Mac Jones is doing just what Belichick wants him to – make smart throws and take care of the ball.
During the win streak, the run game has done its part with 134+ yards in five of six games. However, it is worth noting that only two of the six wins in the streak were against playoff-bound teams.
Will The Bills Have Any Success Running The Ball?
It looked like the Buffalo Bills (7-4 SU, 6-4-1 ATS) were on track and ready to roll over the competition after their dominant win over the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 5. But since then, they have struggled to find an identity on offense, forcing the defense to pick up the slack.
The defense is one of the best in the NFL this season. So, it has been able to take on the challenge, but not all of it. They are one of seven teams holding offenses to less than 100 yards rushing per game. But two running backs were able to dice up the defense:
- Titans RB Derrek Henry rushed for 143 and 3 touchdowns.
- Colts RB Jonathan Taylor rushed for 185 and 4 touchdowns.
The issue, however, is not an inability to slow down the NFL’s best running backs. It has been a failure to develop one of their own. They ran for at least 120 yards per game during their early-season four-game winning streak. Starting quarterback Josh Allen was the leading rusher once in those games (11 carries for 59 yards and a touchdown against the Chiefs).
Allen has been the leading rusher twice in their last six games, and the offense has rushed for 120+ yards just once. Matt Breida is the only running back to account for 50+ yards in that stretch (51 against the Colts). That’s not great production on the ground for a team of this caliber.
Making things more difficult, New England will not be easy to throw on. The Patriots’ D is giving up just 200.9 yards per game this season. Their run defense is a little more forgiving, giving up around 115 yds/gm.
But while yards will be tough to come by, scoring points will be even tougher. The Patriots defense ranks first in the league in scoring (15.8 points per game allowed).
Betting Prediction For Patriots Vs. Bills
- Patriots-Bills Under 44.5
- -149 (1.67), PROLINE+
This game will feature the two best secondaries in the NFL, so don’t expect much from either passing game. The Patriots have a decent run game between their backs, Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson. The Bills, however, have struggled to run the ball in recent weeks and count too much on Allen when they do run.
It would be easy to pick the Patriots in this one because they have been playing so well lately. But most of their competition has been soft. Buffalo looked good against a solid New Orleans defense, but it is hard to know how much success the offense will have against the Patriots’ defense. So the best option on the board is taking the under.