Monday Gambling Preview: Who has the edge in this evening's mega New England-Buffalo showdown?
Oh man, do we have an absolutely AWESOME Monday night football game. Tonight, we have an AFC East battle as New England heads to Buffalo to face Josh Allen and the reigning AFC runners up. The AFC right now is a hot mess, and that's what's perfect about the NFL; with just over a month of NFL regular season left, there is no clarity in this conference. New England, Tennessee, Baltimore and Kansas City are currently 8-4, while Buffalo, Los Angeles, Indianapolis and Cincinnati all have seven wins under their belts.
This game has the ability to shake up the whole conference and send ripple effects to a plethora of different teams. But first, let's jump into the X's and O's and see who's going to come out on top tonight.
Week 13 Monday Night Football, with odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook:
New England at Buffalo
Line: Buffalo (-2.5)
New England's Hot Streak: We all know Bill Belichick is a football genius and is arguably the best head coach of all time, but it should be almost impossible for him to have reloaded this quickly. Less than two years after losing Tom Brady in free agency, Coach Belichick is sitting atop the AFC playoff picture in Week 13 all while starting a rookie quarterback.
New England is on a six-game game win streak and boast a top-3 defense in the league. Now, playing devil's advocate, they played a very easy schedule over the past six weeks, playing nobody in the same stratosphere of the Bill's talent. Belichick is notorious for taking away his opponent's best option, so naturally you would assume his defensive schematics are going to try and limit WR Stefon Diggs.
What to make of Buffalo: Weirdly, Buffalo has a much better defense than they do offense, and that's okay to admit. Sure, Josh Allen is going to be the name that everybody talks about but their cohesiveness on defense is a beauty to watch. Sean McDermott's squad has the No. 1 ranked pass defense and No. 4 ranked rush defense. I'm not great with analytics, but that looks pretty damn good to me. Their problem is they are wildly inconsistent, and you never know which Buffalo team is going to show up. Are we going to get the Buffalo that loses to Jacksonville 9-6, or the Buffalo team that has scored over 35 points on 5 different occasions this year?
Final Thoughts: This is one of those games where if they played 10 times, they very much could split the series. The real line that intrigues me here is the over/under. The weather tonight in Buffalo is supposed to be horrible outside, and that's underselling it. There are reports of 60 mile per hour wind gusts with flurry potential. Also, both of these teams have top three ranked defenses in the league and have very smart and defensive minded head coaches. In addition to this, it is Mac Jones first career MNF game, which could have the rookie quarterback get off to a slow start. I don't think we should overthink this one, I like the under.
Game Prediction: New England 23, Buffalo 17
Official pick: Under 40.5
Follow Jay Oppler on Twitter - @JayOppler23
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