Home group in CAPS:
Patriots (+4.5, UNDER 43.5) over BILLS
We can’t do something about it, apart from examine heaven and earth to correctly consider it, however the projected climate readings in Orchard Park can’t be ignored. Especially given the projected excessive of 11 levels, with lows reaching 5 levels — if not worse. Playing at evening doesn’t assist.
Both of those two AFC East rivals have spoiled each other’s nests already this season. In the sooner sport performed at Highmark Stadium, related frigid circumstances prevailed — however the Patriots engineered a full-fledged ball-control sport within the wind, handed however 3 times, and escaped, triumphant.
Slick younger Bills QB Josh Allen engineered fast revenge, simply three weeks later, on 2021’s last Sunday. The reminiscence stays contemporary in Foxborough, and it’ll take all of Bill Belichick’s famend teaching sorcery to increase New England’s season into late January.
Josh Allen (left) and the Bills host Mac Jones (proper) and the Patriots in one of many AFC wild-card video games.Getty, AP
Belichick doesn’t monopolize all of the excessive playing cards anymore, he can not power his gridiron will on most. As promising as QB Mac Jones is for New England when it comes to the squad’s signal-calling future — and Jones has picked up a lot — the Patriots’ greatest hope is that Jones has absorbed sufficient sheer pigskin savvy to hitch forces with Maven Bill B and, so long as younger QB Jones stays precocious, handle to take this desperation battle royal to the wire. Most reluctant to fade Belichick right here.
BENGALS (-5.5, OVER 49) over Raiders
We can hardly watch for this fascinating show of diversified expertise, particularly on the offensive facet.
The Cincinnati devoted determine to be amply rewarded for his or her endurance in ready for the likes of the 2020 NFL Draft’s best choice, Joe Burrow. The LSU product is little question delighted to have the ability to reconnect with top-drawer star receiver Ja’Marr Chase. Anyone who has had any sustained publicity to the skills of those two can’t assist however be concerned to see extra.
Joe Burrow AP
Las Vegas has endured a turbulent yr, particularly after the midseason departure head coach Jon Gruden. The discipline to interchange him is open, and contains Rich Bassicia, the decades-long assistant coach and present Raiders interim coach.
The favourite for the job — nonetheless on the course, from all reviews — is present Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, however we’re not fascinated by launching half-baked guesses. All shall be revealed, ultimately.
The Raiders are working off a cramped work week, having simply narrowly escaped NFL Week 18 with an extra time victory over the Chargers, who did the whole lot however win and advance final Sunday evening, earlier than Raiders QB David Carr carried the day and introduced us so far.
We gained’t deny that we imagine Burrow might prove even higher than lots of his most ardent admirers count on.