Denver Broncos vs. New England Patriots
The leaders in the AFC West host the leaders in the AFC East as the Denver Broncos host the New England Patriots in a possible playoff preview. The Patriots are -6 point favorites over the Broncos with an over/under point total set at 46.5.
It has been nothing short of a magical ride for the Denver Broncos as seemingly week after week they have come up with a miracle finish to rise from the bottom of their division to the top with six consecutive wins. Tim Tebow has been the story this year for the Broncos as he seems to struggle for three quarters in almost every game and then he has rallied Denver to a win each of the last six weeks. Tebow has completed 48.5 percent of his passes with 11 touchdowns and two interceptions while rushing for 517 yards and three touchdowns. Willis McGahee has to be a candidate for the Comeback Player of the Year averaging 4.6 yards per carry for 920 yards and four touchdowns. Eric Decker has had a breakout year with 42 catches and eight touchdowns and Demaryius Thomas has 18 catches with four of them going for touchdowns. Defensively the Broncos have 37 sacks, 11 fumble recoveries, and nine interceptions with a minus four turnover ratio and they allow 357.1 yards and 23.2 points per game. Wesley Woodyard has 83 tackles, D.J. Williams has 75 tackles, and Von Miller has 11.5 sacks. It has been the Denver defense keeping them in games while the offense sputters and give them a chance to win it in the end.
The New England Patriots have wrapped up the AFC East but with home field advantage and a first round bye still available don’t look for this group of veterans to let up anytime soon. While the Broncos have won six in a row the Pats are no slouches themselves winning their last five. Tom Brady has completed 66.1 percent of his passes for 4,273 yards with 31 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. BenJarvus Green-Ellis is averaging just 3.8 yards per carry but he has eight touchdowns and Danny Woodhead is averaging 4.4 yards per carry. Wes Welker has caught 100 passes for 1,339 yards and nine touchdowns, Rob Gronkowski has 71 catches for 1,088 yards and 15 touchdowns, and Aaron Hernandez has 59 catches. Defensively New England has 29 sacks, six fumble recoveries, and 18 interceptions with a plus nine turnover ratio and they allow 416 yards and 21.1 points per game. Kyle Arrington has 72 tackles and seven interceptions, Devin McCourty has 71 tackles, and Andre Carter has 10 sacks. While New England’s defense is last in the NFL in yards allowed they get it done by creating the turnovers.
Denver is 5-1 against the spread in their last six games overall, 2-5-1 against the spread against a team with a winning record, and 4-1 against the spread following a win. New England is 8-3 against the spread in their last 11 road games, 9-4 against the spread in their last 13 against the AFC, and 2-5 against the spread in their last seven games as a favorite. The home team has covered in four of the last five meetings of these two.
While many will look at this game as a barometer to see just how good or how “for real” the Denver Broncos are this one is equally as much of a barometer for the Patriots. I am not sure Denver can pull off another win but I see this one being close as maybe it’s actually Brady who pulls off the comeback and the Broncos who get Tebowed. I still like the points with the home team.
Denver Broncos +6 New England Patriots