Betting Line: Patriots -2
Over/Under: 45 points at 5Dimes
In a re-match of last season’s AFC Championship game, the New England Patriots face the Jacksonville Jaguars in week 2 of the 2018 NFL season.
This time around the game is in Jacksonville, but just like the title game, the Jags are the betting underdog.
Both teams won their season opener and the Jags are already in the driver’s seat in the AFC South with the three other teams in the division losing in Week 1. Jacksonville has a great defense and they have a tall task against Tom Brady, who they could stop last season in the AFT title game after having a big lead.
The Patriots are 1-0 ATS after one game with an Over/Under record of 0-1-0 and the Jaguars are also 1-0 ATS with an O/Y record of 0-1-0.
Last season in the AFC Championship Game the Patriots beat the Jaguars 24-20 with Brady going for 290 passing yards.
In their season opener the Patriots were at home and they beat the Houston Texans 27-20. While New England allowed Houston to rush for 167 yards they outgained them 389 yards to 325 yards forced two turnovers, they had three, and they held the Texans to only 2/11 on third down conversions.
The Pats coughed up the ball three times in the win over Houston with an interception and two fumbles and they have to hold onto the rock facing a daunting Jacksonville defense.
Brady passed for 277 yards with three touchdowns and one interception in the Houston game and star TE Rob Gronkowski had a big game with 123 receiving yards and a touchdown. Lead wide receiver Julian Edelman is serving a four-game suspension and is out for this game and the Pats signed a couple of new receivers this week.
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In their first game of the season the Jags were on the road and they beat the New York Giants 20-15. Jacksonville had fewer overall yards in the game (324 to 305), but they forced two turnovers and ran the ball better. The run game is key for the Jags, who do not have a great passing attack and #1 running back Leonard Fournette is a question mark for this game with a hamstring injury. If he cannot go it will be a big loss for the Jags.
Blake Bortles was decent in the win over New York going 18/33 for 176 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He has a decent receiver corps, but, again, it is key that Jacksonville runs the ball. If Fournette cannot go there will be a lot of pressure on T.J. Yeldon, who rushed for 51 yards on a 3.6 per carry average in the win over New York.
The Jaguars’ defense did give up 210 passing yards in their first game, but did not give up a touchdown in the air and they had an interception. Their run defense had a great game for the most part allowing 114 rushing yards with 68 of those on one run.
New England betting trends
- Patriots are 14-3 ATS in their last 17 road games
- Patriots are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 road games facing a team with a winning home record
- Under record of 4-0 in their last 4 road games
Jacksonville betting trends
- Jaguars are 7-3 in their last 10 games facing a team with a winning record
- Jaguars are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games after a straight up win
- Under record of 4-1 in their last 5 games
- In the last 5 games between these teams the Under record is 3-1-1.
Patriots vs. Jaguars betting prediction
While Brady is the big name in this game, the Pats will win because Fournette is in serious doubt to play. He has an injured hamstring and in Week 2 it would be surprising if the Jacksonville coaches let him go if he is not 100% fit.
Because of his absence, the Jags will not have a good game on the ground and while their defense will play well, they will give up some big plays against Brady. In the Sunshine State this Sunday the Patriots will win and cover the spread.
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