|Tom Brady LOVES pressure; faces No. 1 defense with No. 1 sack total|
New England (13-4, 8-7-2 ATS) at Denver (13-4, 8-8-1 ATS)
Line: New England -3 (-120), 44
LAS VEGAS -- Let’s just start by saying that ratings-wise, the Broncos should be favored. That’s simply the approach from an oddsmaker position where we don’t believe the Patriots are 6-points better than Denver, and that’s what the number is telling us if taking out the 3-points for Denver’s home field.
However, bookmakers need to factor in public perception. The additional rating points added to New England for the AFC Championship Game are because of the public, which always believes what it saw last.
The books have to forecast who is going to be bet the most and go against the oddsmaker position, especially in games with such high volume. Sharp money pales in comparison to the amount Joe Public throws down on these games. And so far the books look to be right — 75 percent of bets have come in on the Pats -3.
But that doesn’t mean we have to follow the herd at the bet windows. You’re looking at nearly 5-points of value by taking the Broncos at home, which is one of the best home field advantages in NFL history. The home field for Denver has been so good through the years that the great Tom Brady is only 2-6 when playing in the Rockies, and his two wins came against third-stringer Danny Kanell and Tim Tebow.
To show the Patriots' huge ratings increase after last week, let’s take a look at a few recent games with similar spreads.
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