Both the Bills and Patriots have plenty of playoff motivation in their matchup Sunday, but if the game gets out of hand, there could be some chippiness because Pats star tight end Rob Gronkowski laid a vicious cheap shot on Bills cornerback Tre’Davoius White in the last meeting a few weeks ago. The Pats are double-digit NFL odds favorites.
How to Bet Bills at Patriots NFL Odds & Week 16 Pick98.5 The Sports Hub (New England)Stream Option: NFL LiveOpening NFL Odds: Patriots -11.5 (47)
Last MeetingIn Wek 13, the Bills lost at home to the Patriots 23-3. Rex Burkhead scored on 1 and 14-yard runs on the Patriots first two drives of the second half, and Stephen Gostkowski hit three field goals in a game New England never trailed. Tom Brady went 21 of 30 for 258 yards and an interception, while improving to 27-3 over Buffalo and breaking Brett Favre’s NFL record for most wins by a quarterback against any one opponent. Burkhead is hurt now.New England holds a 71-43-1 edge in the series. The Patriots have won 30 of the last 35 games between the clubs, dating back to the 2000 season. The Patriots’ 71 wins over the Bills are their highest victory total over any opponent.
Why Bet on Buffalo?It was Dec. 26, 1999, the last time before this season the Bills had a realistic shot of the playoffs when facing the Patriots in a December or regular-season January game. Wade Phillips led the Bills, then 9-5, into Foxboro Stadium and they escaped with a 13-10 win over Pete Carroll’s Patriots, who were 7-7. Buffalo would make the playoffs but lose to the Titans on the “Music City Miracle.” The Bills haven’t been back since.The Bills have the longest playoff drought in the NFL but are still alive at 8-6 in the wild-card chase. Buffalo cannot clinch a playoff berth nor be eliminated from playoff contention in Week 16. Winning out isn’t impossible, but it’s highly improbable with two division road games remaining. Buffalo’s hopes are realistically tied to finishing a sweep of Miami in Week 17 to get to 9-7. The Bills’ best bet is having the Ravens go 10-6 and the Titans go 8-8, settling in between as the second wild card.Should the Titans, however, also finish 9-7 with one more AFC win, they would hold a conference-record tiebreaker over the Bills. There’s also a realistic chance of the Titans losing out and the Chargers winning out to get to 9-7. Buffalo loses the head-to-head tiebreaker there thanks to a 54-24 loss at Los Angeles in Week 11.
What Can We Expect from the Bills on Sunday?White and safety Micah Hyde said Wednesday that it does not make sense for them to retaliate against Gronkowski this Sunday for his Dec. 3 late hit against White. “We know if we go out there and try do anything selfish or anything to hurt the team, we can cost ourselves a playoff spot — or one of our main players — by going out there and doing something stupid,” White said. That’s fine, but if this game is a blowout, look out.White was on list of alternates to Pro Bowl. He is tied for fourth in NFL in interceptions (4) and tied for ninth in pass breakups (11). He is Pro Football Focus’ third-ranked cornerback in the NFL. His play on has made him a favorite for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. RB LeSean McCoy is a Pro Bowler. He leads the NFL in rushing yards (462) since Week 11. His 1,057 yards are fifth-most this season.
Why Bet on New England?New England comes off a very emotional win in Pittsburgh that puts the Pats in the driver’s seat for the AFC’s top seed. Recovering from that, and matching that energy level, won’t be easy when the Bills come to town on Sunday. “That game drained a lot out of everybody that coached or played in it,” Bill Belichick said. “That was a very emotional, intense football game.”Following his heroics in Pittsburgh, Gronkowski became the sixth Patriot in 2017 to be honored with an AFC award. He had nine catches for 168 yards and a 2-point conversion. With his career-high total against the Steelers, Gronkowski eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark on the season, giving him his fourth 1,000-yard season. He joins Tony Gonzalez and Jason Witten as the only NFL tight ends with four 1,000-yard seasons.
How Well Have the Patriots Been This Season?New England has clinched the AFC East. The Patriots will clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with a win over the Bills combined with a Steelers loss and a Jaguars loss/tie. New England will clinch a first-round bye with a win combined with a Steelers loss, or a win combined with a Jaguars loss/tie, or a tie and a Jaguars loss.The Patriots (11-3) have won at least 12 games 11 times in team history, including seven straight from 2010-16. San Francisco owns the NFL record with thirteen 12-win seasons since the NFL merger. The Patriots are tied with Indianapolis for the most consecutive 12-win seasons with seven straight.This has been one of the most lopsided rivalries in recent NFL history and it’s thanks in large part to Brady. He is 27-3 all-time against the Bills in his career. There’s also no team better than the Patriots at covering huge spreads. Since the beginning of the 2015 season, the Patriots are 8-2 ATS in games where they’re favored by 10 or more points (9-1 straight-up). Overall, the Patriots are 9-5 ATS on the year, which is tied for the third best mark in the NFL.
Latest NFL Odds Trends
- Buffalo is 2-5-1 ATS in the last 8 games on the road
- Buffalo is 2-6 SU in the last 8 games on the road
- The total went OVER in 6 of Buffalo’s last 9 games
- New England is 7-1 ATS in the last 8 games
- New England is 9-1 SU in the last 10 games
- The total went UNDER in 4 of New England’s last 5 games