The NFL odds makers are installing the Patriots, owners of two consecutive losses, field goal favorites against their hosts the Houston Texans. But if you believe Tom Terrific & Co. have what it takes to repeat as Super Bowl champs, maybe another loss makes them a better value play?
No doubt that the Patriots’ first loss of the season at Mile High caused smiles from ear to ear not only in Denver but around the nation. Bill Belichick’s crew may be golden boys in New England but outside the province of their rabid fan base they are not looked upon too kindly. The naysayers will denounce Belichick, Brady, et al as cheaters while Patriots Nation will arm themselves with pitchforks and lanterns to defend the honor of, in their minds, the greatest coach, quarterback and franchise the world has ever known.
Whatever your personal feelings towards the Patriots are we should always remember that in sports gambling, as in life, an intellectual judgment should not be colored by emotion. If you believe that things will all work out alright in the end and the Patriots will still be standing in February then you might want them to lose this third consecutive game. Let’s take a peek at where the Super Bowl future NFL odds at bet365 went after each Patriots’ loss thus far.
Before Loss #1 to Denver:+200
After Loss #1 to Denver:+275/+300
After Loss #2 to Philadelphia:+400
Fans never enjoy seeing their team lose and that goes double for those in New England. The expectations have been set so high that every defeat is personal and viewed under a microscope that gets dissected, scrutinized and discussed from Boston to Bangor. But we are gamblers first and foremost which is why we must put our pompoms aside while we pledge allegiance to our bankroll. This game against the Houston Texans might be a good one to lose in order that we may see New England’s Super Bowl odds climb even higher.
Pats Lose Three – Then What?
Even if you’re a fan of the Patriots, losing this game would not be a calamity. New England is firmly in control of the AFC East with only the New York Jets as a remote threat. Gang Green would have to win out, including a victory over the Patriots in Week 16, in order to have a chance at the division title. Hardly seems likely so we will assume for the purposes of this exercise that the Patriots not only claim the AFC East but also have a better record than the AFC South champs that will either be the Texans or the Colts. Therefore, this year’s Patriots edition is virtually guaranteed a division crown and home field advantage in the first round even if they lose on Sunday.
Moreover, if they lose then that’s when we pounce and include the Pats in our Super Bowl future NFL picks. Here is the coup de grace my friends. There are two first-round playoff byes with New England, Cincinnati and Denver all vying for those coveted two spots. Yet even if the Patriots lose they could still, yes still, cop one of those spots. The Bengals and Broncos must play each other in Week 16 which means one of those two teams loses (no there won’t be a tie). Both clubs also have to play the Pittsburgh Steelers who remain a dark horse and a legitimate threat. All the Patriots have left on their slate after the Texans is the Titans, Jets and Dolphins. I could easily envision New England’s Super Bowl odds spiking to +550 or +600 if they lose to Houston on Sunday, winning their next three and still getting a first round bye. Now that sounds like a gamble worth taking.