NFL ~ NOV 2

Game of the Day: Broncos at Patriots

Denver Broncos at New England Patriots (+3, 50)

Tom Brady and Peyton Manning will inevitably end up in the NFL Hall of Fame together and have been compared to each other since the former burst onto the scene in 2001. The two star quarterbacks continue their rivalry when the New England Patriots host the Denver Broncos on Sunday. As usual, Brady and Manning have their respective teams near the top of the AFC and Sunday’s meeting could have implications on postseason seeding down the line.

Brady’s teams have defeated Manning’s 10 out of the 15 meetings, but the Broncos got the big win when it counted in the AFC Championship game last season. “Peyton has been a phenomenal player – so consistent and durable for a long period,” Brady told reporters. “We've had a great rivalry. ... He’s always been someone I've really looked up to and admired.” Denver owns the best record in the AFC and joins New England in entering the weekend on a four-game winning streak.

TV: 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS.

LINE HISTORY: Vegas books opened the Broncos as 3-point road faves and that hasn't moved. The total opened 55 and is down to 50 mostly due to in-climate weather.

INJURY REPORT: Broncos - RB Montee Ball (Questionable, groin), CB Omar Bolden (Questionable, concussion), LB Steven Johnson (Questionable, ankle). Patiots - DB Nate Ebner (Questionable, finger), OL Cameron Fleming (Questionble finger).

WEATHER: MOSTLY CLOUDY, NORTHWEST WIND 10-20, GUSTY. GAME TEMP 40, RH 62% WIND CHILL 32

POWER RANKINGS: Broncos (-8.75) + Patriots (-3.75) + home field (-3.0) = Broncos -2.0

WHAT CAPPERS SAY: "Denver has won and covered four straight and heads to New England for just its third road game. 9-20 ATS in the last 29 road games versus a team with a winning home record. New England on a four-game winning streak after 2-2 start and plays Denver in its third-straight home game. 3-9 ATS in the last 12 games after scoring more than 30 points." Matt Fargo.

WHAT BOOKS SAY: "We opened the Broncos -3.5 (+100) / Pats +3.5 (-120) and we saw mostly Broncos money at that price. We went to -3.5 -105 and eventually -3.5 flat on the game and that’s when we took a decent size bet from one of sharper players. We went back to Broncos -3.5 and that same sharp bettor took the Pat’s again at that new price, that forced us to get down to 3-flat on this game, which is our current number. Since going to 3-flat though we’ve seen a huge rise in Broncos support and I wouldn’t be surprised if we eventually get back to 3.5 on this game. Obviously we hate moving off and on this very key number of 3, so we’ll get to -3 (-120) before going back to 3, but currently we’ve moved it from 3 flat to Broncos -3 (-115) for now." Michael Stewart.

ABOUT THE BRONCOS (6-1 SU, 4-3 ATS, 5-2 O/U): Denver received a few extra days to prepare after playing the Thursday night game on Oct. 23 and has looked even better than the team that went to the Super Bowl last season. Defensive end Von Miller, who sat out the win over the Patriots in the AFC Championship game, was named the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Month for October with seven sacks and cornerback Aqib Talib, who made the Pro Bowl as a member of New England in 2013, is now on the Broncos’ side. “I think they’re forming their identity,” Manning told reporters of the defense. “There is no question they’re playing with confidence, and that’s what you want.”

ABOUT THE PATRIOTS (6-2 SU, 4-4 ATS, 6-2 O/U): New England’s rise over the last few weeks can be directly linked to the return to health of tight end Rob Gronkowski, who was limited the first month while recovering from a knee injury that knocked him out of the 2013 campaign. The player that delivered the hit that tore up Gronkowski’s knee, safety T.J. Ward, is now with the Broncos, and the Patriots’ star has been avoiding making any statements directly about Ward. Gronkowski’s statements on the field have been loud, and he is coming off a three-TD performance in last week's 51-23 victory over the Chicago Bears.

TRENDS:

* Broncos are 0-4 ATS in their last four meetings in New England.
* Over is 4-1 in the last five meetings.
* Home team is 4-0 ATS in their last four meetings.
* Favorite is 5-0 ATS in their last five meetings.

CONSENSUS: 53 percent of wagers are backing the visiting Broncos.

The play: Denver -3

others...
Jags +11
NYJ +9
DEN/NE O50
MIA

NCAA NOV 1

Game of the Day: Auburn at Ole Miss

Auburn Tigers at Ole Miss Rebels (-1.5, 51)

Coming off its third 40-point effort in the last four games, No. 4 Auburn will face a stiff challenge Saturday when it visits ninth-ranked Mississippi in an SEC West showdown. The SEC is loaded with intriguing matchups on a weekly basis, but this contest is particularly attractive since Ole Miss is trying to bounce back from its first loss while Auburn is hoping to avoid losing at both Mississippi schools. The Tigers were defeated at current No. 1 Mississippi State 38-23 two games ago before bouncing back with a 42-35 triumph against South Carolina.

"(Improving on a weekly basis) has been the plan all year from day one," said Auburn coach Gus Malzahn. "We are going to need to have that happen because we are playing the meat of our schedule with three top-10 teams on the road. I don't know another team in the country that is doing that." The other game that Malzahn is referring to is next month's contest at No. 8 Georgia, but first the Tigers must find a way to score against the nation's top defense. The Rebels are giving up just 10.5 points per game and basically fell right on that number in last week's 10-7 defeat at 17th-ranked LSU.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Mississippi -2

LINE HISTORY: After opening at Ole Miss -3, the line has dropped to -1.5. The total has jumped from an opening line of 50 to 51.

INJURY REPORT: Auburn - DE Carl Lawson (Ques-Knee), OL Patrick Miller (Ques-Undisclosed) Ole Miss - DT Robert Nkemdiche (Prob-Undisclosed), CB Cody Prewitt (Prob-Shoulder), OL Ben Still (Prob-Knee)

WEATHER REPORT: Clear skies are expected for the game with the temperature near 52°F. Winds will be gusting upwards of six mph.

ABOUT AUBURN (6-1, 3-1 SEC): The Tigers landed at No. 3 in the inaugural College Football Playoff rankings - one spot ahead of the Rebels - but whichever team loses Saturday almost certainly will fall out of the playoff picture. Auburn ran for a season-high 395 yards last week against South Carolina with Cameron Artis-Payne totaling 167 yards and a touchdown and quarterback Nick Marshall adding 89 and three scores. Another key weapon for Auburn is Quan Bray, who leads the nation in punt return average (25.2) and has a pair of punt return TDs in 2014.

ABOUT MISSISSIPPI (7-1, 4-1): Ole Miss has outscored opponents 62-3 in the first quarter this season, including 7-0 against LSU last weekend, but the Rebels could not dent the scoreboard over the final three quarters, losing on an interception by Bo Wallace near the goal line with two seconds left. "This league is brutal," said Rebels coach Hugh Freeze, whose team has thrived off turnovers this season, leading the nation with 90 points off miscues. Wallace, who had thrown 126 consecutive passes without a pick before the final play against LSU, is the SEC's active career leader in passing touchdowns (58), total touchdowns (74), passing yards (8,415) and total yards (9,322).

TRENDS:

*Tigers are 10-2 ATS in their last 12 conference games.
*Under is 10-1 in Rebels last 11 games overall.
*Home team is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.
*Over is 7-1 in the last 8 meetings in Mississippi.
The play: Ole Miss -1'

others...
Kansas St -12'
Gators +11

SUPER BOWL / SUPER PICK!

Seattle Seahawks vs. Denver Broncos - 6:30 PM EST

For only the 2nd time in the last 20 years has the top 2 seeds made it all the way to the Super Bowl. John Q. Public really wants the scenario of Peyton Manning winning it all and riding off in the sunset of retirement. I'm extra psyched up about this year more than usual because I feel there are some unique findings all pointing to the same side in this one. In 47 tries, no quarterback has EVER won a Super Bowl with 2 different teams. Denver set an NFL record scoring 606 points in the regular season, averaging 37.9 PPG & 457 YPG.

Those who cared to dive into the record books would have found that the last 5 teams that broke single-season scoring records went a perfect 0-5 SU in the grand finale. After further sports database crunchings, the past 7 times a team played 2 games in a row at home and then was installed as Super bowl favorites, that team has gone a perfect 0-7 ATS.

For my pick here, people ask why the ML? The answer is plainly because the pointspread has only come into play 13% of the time with just 6 times in 47 chances. let's get down in the trenches now. Denver is a great offense but has not ran into this type of physicality this season since the Broncos faced NOBODY in the top 6 in total defense all year.

In contrast, Seattle faced EIGHT teams in the top 6 in total defense & 7 teams that won at least 10 games! On the flip side, the Orange & Blue have really inflated passing statistics since they've faced 9 teams who ranked in the bottom 8 in yards per play defense. Denver receivers Demariyus Thomas, Julius Thomas, Eric Decker & Wes Welker must now face a Seattle defense that is both the NFL's best scoring defense & yards per play defense. This unit makes things happen. They are forcing a league-best 2.4 turnovers per game with a very strong TO ratio of +20! Seattle has allowed just 14.4 PPG this season. They have 8 of out of 10 best skill position players in this matchup.

LCB Richard Sherman is stellar along with 2 speedsters at safety with Earl Thomas & Kam Chancellor. Having LB K.J. Wright only solidifies their physicality . DC Dan Quinn has some pretty strong blueprints laid by mediocre San Diego (held Denver to 22 PPG) who had a fierce pass rush. Add to that an effective ground game by Seattle led by RB Marshawn Lynch to keep Manning on the sidelines and that is just how the Chargers got their "W" over Denver earlier.

Taking these teams to the road, we find the Broncos were 5-3 ATS while Seattle going a solid 6-2 SU & ATS this season. Yes, Seattle can play well away from CenturyLink Field. One other big stat you can't overlook is Seattle's BIG GAME success. The Hawks' have gone an amazing 16-3-1 ATS their last 20 versus winning teams - good to the tune of 84%! To boot, Seattle has also covered an unheard of 74% of their last 32 games.

My bottom line says the weather (which could be windy and/or snowy) favors Seattle for both scenarios. I feel Seattle QB Russell Wilson is poised and mature for his 2nd season. He's compiled an amazing 24-8 regular season record since graduating from Wisconsin. I like his chances here since Denver is missing their best pass rusher in Von Miller & their best DB in Chris Harris. having WR Percy Harvin back only enhances Wilson's effectiveness in hitting other wideouts.

The underdog trend in the Super Bowl has seen the pups cash 5 out of the last 6. I'm ready to cash fellas! Let's go to the New Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ for the first cold-weather Super Bowl to throw all the pasta on the Seattle Seahawks on the ML as my Rare Super Bowl LOCK! Seahawks will win by 3-7 points.

•PREGAME NOTES: With a Super Bowl victory, Pete Carroll can join Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer as the only coaches to win a college football national championship and a Super Bowl in their careers.... Each player on the winning team in Super Bowl XLVIII will receive $92,000. Each losing player gets $46,000.... A 30-second commercial for Super Bowl XLVIII will cost $4 million. In the first Super Bowl, it was $42k.... The face value ticket prices for Super Bowl XLVIII range from $500 to $2,600. Super Bowl I prices were tiered at $6, $8 and $12.

The coldest outdoor Super Bowl on record was Super Bowl VI in New Orleans before the Superdome opened. It was 39 degrees at kickoff.... Super Bowl XLVIII will be distributed to more than 185 countries and broadcast in 30 different languages.... The 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame class will be announced the day before the Super Bowl with former Seattle Seahawks left tackle Walter Jones, ex-Tampa Bay linebacker Derrick Brooks, former Giants star DE Michael Strahan and former Bucs and Colts coach Tony Dungy as the most likely inductees.

StatSystems Sports has searched its database for all past games where the posted line or total were similar to this game's and where the final game statistics were comparable to the estimator's projections. (Rush/Pass YPP, Time of Possession, along with Turnover Margin). The number of simulations in which each team covered the current spread, won the game straight up, and number of simulations which went over or under the current total are listed below. Edges are indicated where one side enjoyed a significant advantage against the line or total.

--In past games, the underdog covered the spread 23 times, while the favorite covered the spread 47 times. *EDGE against the spread =DENVER. In past games, the favorite won the game straight up 46 times, while the underdog won straight up 24 times. 41 games went under the total, while 29 games went over the total. *No EDGE.

--In past games, the underdog covered first half line 82 times, while the favorite covered first half line 58 times. *No EDGE. 56 games went under first half total, while 42 games went over first half total. *No EDGE.

•KEY STATS
-- SEATTLE is 11-2 ATS (+8.8 Units) when playing against a team with a winning record in the second half of the season over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was SEATTLE 25.5, OPPONENT 16.8.

-- SEATTLE is 9-1 ATS (+7.9 Units) versus good passing teams averaging 7 or more passing yards/att. over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was SEATTLE 23.7, OPPONENT 16.3.

-- SEATTLE is 13-3 ATS (+9.7 Units) versus good offensive teams - averaging >=5.65 yards/play over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was SEATTLE 27.5, OPPONENT 19.3.

-- CARROLL is 14-3 ATS (+10.7 Units) versus bad defensive teams who give up 24 or more points/game as the coach of SEATTLE.
The average score was SEATTLE 27.1, OPPONENT 14.6.

-- CARROLL is 10-0 ATS (+10.0 Units) versus bad defensive teams who give up 24 or more points/game in the second half of the season as the coach of SEATTLE.
The average score was SEATTLE 32.0, OPPONENT 12.0.

-- CARROLL is 12-2 ATS (+9.8 Units) versus good passing teams averaging 7 or more passing yards/att. as the coach of SEATTLE.
The average score was SEATTLE 23.1, OPPONENT 19.0.

-- SEATTLE is 6-0 UNDER (+6.0 Units) after covering the spread in 5 or 6 out of their last 7 games this season.
The average score was SEATTLE 20.0, OPPONENT 11.2.

-- SEATTLE is 21-47 against the 1rst half line (-30.7 Units) in road games when playing against a team with a winning record since 1992.
The average score was SEATTLE 8.0, OPPONENT 15.6.

-- SEATTLE is 10-28 against the 1rst half line (-20.8 Units) in road games versus good teams - outscoring opponents by 6+ PPG on the season since 1992.
The average score was SEATTLE 7.3, OPPONENT 16.2.

-- SEATTLE is 0-7 against the 1rst half line (-7.7 Units) in road games in playoff games since 1992.
The average score was SEATTLE 7.6, OPPONENT 17.7.

-- SEATTLE is 18-41 against the 1rst half line (-27.1 Units) in road games after covering the spread in 2 out of their last 3 games since 1992.
The average score was SEATTLE 8.2, OPPONENT 14.4.

-- SEATTLE is 9-26 against the 1rst half line (-19.6 Units) in road games after having won 3 out of their last 4 games since 1992.
The average score was SEATTLE 9.0, OPPONENT 12.3.

-- CARROLL is 0-8 against the 1rst half line (-8.8 Units) off 2 consecutive home wins as the coach of SEATTLE.
The average score was SEATTLE 6.8, OPPONENT 14.4.

-- SEATTLE is 6-0 OVER (+6.0 Units) the 1rst half total versus excellent kickoff return teams, more than 24 yards per return this season.
The average score was SEATTLE 17.2, OPPONENT 13.5.

-- SEATTLE is 7-0 OVER (+7.0 Units) the 1rst half total after 3 or more consecutive wins this season.
The average score was SEATTLE 16.7, OPPONENT 13.9.

-- CARROLL is 11-2 OVER (+8.8 Units) the 1rst half total versus excellent kickoff return teams, more than 24 yards per return in the second half of the season as the coach of SEATTLE.
The average score was SEATTLE 19.1, OPPONENT 9.6.

-- DENVER is 15-2 ATS (+12.8 Units) when playing with 2 weeks or more of rest since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 29.4, OPPONENT 19.6.

-- DENVER is 40-18 OVER (+20.2 Units) when playing against a top-level team (Win Pct. > 75%) since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 22.8, OPPONENT 24.6.

-- DENVER is 46-20 OVER (+24.0 Units) versus good rushing teams - averaging >=130 rushing yards/game since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 24.5, OPPONENT 23.1.

-- DENVER is 9-1 OVER (+7.9 Units) in games played on turf over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 28.8, OPPONENT 34.2.

-- DENVER is 15-4 OVER (+10.6 Units) after gaining 400 or more total yards in their previous game over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 35.6, OPPONENT 24.8.

-- DENVER is 27-10 OVER (+16.0 Units) after gaining 7 or more yards/play in their previous game since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 27.0, OPPONENT 24.5.

-- FOX is 16-4 OVER (+11.6 Units) in all games where the total is between 42.5 and 49 points as the coach of DENVER.
The average score was DENVER 28.4, OPPONENT 25.0.

-- DENVER is 15-3 against the 1rst half line (+11.7 Units) when playing with 2 weeks or more of rest since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 17.4, OPPONENT 8.0.

-- DENVER is 6-0 against the 1rst half line (+6.0 Units) off 1 or more consecutive unders this season.
The average score was DENVER 19.2, OPPONENT 3.2.

-- FOX is 16-4 against the 1rst half line (+11.6 Units) versus good defensive teams - allowing The average score was FOX 10.6, OPPONENT 8.3.

-- FOX is 11-2 against the 1rst half line (+8.8 Units) versus good defensive teams - allowing The average score was FOX 11.8, OPPONENT 8.4.

•HEAD-TO-HEAD HISTORY
Denver is 34-19 against Seattle and won 31-14 in the most recent meeting in 2010. That includes the Seahawks' 31-7 home victory in the only postseason matchup between the former AFC West rivals in 1983.

--DENVER is 12-10 against the spread versus SEATTLE since 1992.
--DENVER is 17-6 straight up against SEATTLE since 1992.
--12 of 23 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL since 1992.

--DENVER is 14-7 versus the first half line when playing against SEATTLE since 1992.
--15 of 23 games in this series have gone UNDER THE FIRST HALF TOTAL since 1992.

--Over is 5-2 in the last 7 meetings.
--Over is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings in Denver.

•RECENT TRENDS
--Under is 6-0 in Seahawks last 6 games on fieldturf.
--Under is 5-0 in Seahawks last 5 games following a ATS win.
--Under is 5-0 in Seahawks last 5 games following a S.U. win.

--Over is 13-2-1 in Broncos last 16 games on fieldturf.
--Under is 4-0 in Broncos last 4 games following a S.U. win.
--Over is 24-7 in Broncos last 31 vs. a team with a winning record.

All that being said, the major play is:

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS +120

and a smaller play on UNDER 47½

AFC Championship Game

#301 NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS @ #302 DENVER BRONCOS
(TV: 3:00 PM EST, CBS. Line: Broncos -5, Total: 55) - In a season in which Peyton Manning surpassed Tom Brady's single-season record for touchdown passes, it's probably fitting that these superstars will meet with the AFC title on the line. While the quarterbacks will share this weekend's spotlight, there's reason to believe the rushing attacks for the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots will be more decisive to Sunday's outcome. This could be the final postseason matchup between these future Hall of Fame signal-callers, and the stakes couldn't be higher with a trip to Super Bowl XLVIII on the line in Denver.

Manning was the story of the season as he dissected NFL defenses with ease for 55 touchdown passes. Brady set the previous mark of 50 in 2007 when the Patriots nearly completed an historic 19-0 season before an upset loss in the Super Bowl to a New York Giants team led by Manning's brother, Eli. Brady has won 10 of 14 matchups with Manning's teams, including a 2-1 mark in the postseason in which the home team has prevailed each time. This duel is drawing comparisons to other iconic sports matchups such as Ali-Frazier, Palmer-Nicklaus and Bird-Magic. "It's going to a barnburner," Broncos executive vice president of football operations John Elway said.

The first meeting this season certainly was a thriller, as New England (13-4) rallied from a 24-0 halftime deficit for a 34-31 overtime win Nov. 24 in Foxborough. Manning was held to 150 yards, a 52.8 completion percentage and a 70.4 passer rating -- by far his worst figures of his historic season. Denver (14-3) is favored this time as the No. 1 seed with home-field advantage. Brady, who missed practice Wednesday, said in his weekly WEEI radio show that he is relishing being the underdog. "I'm sure no one's going to pick us to win this week," said Brady, who will make his eighth AFC title game appearance and third in as many years. "We've had our backs against the wall for a while. Really, the whole season we've lost players, and teams have really counted us out."

The players that Brady and Manning will hand off to this weekend figure to be crucial in determining the winner. Elway had Terrell Davis in his backfield when Denver won the Super Bowl in the 1997 and 1998 seasons, and Manning also will give the ball to a former Georgia tailback. Knowshon Moreno had a career-high 1,038 rushing yards this season, and the Patriots will be very familiar with him after he had a career-best 224 yards in the November meeting. Moreno's 23 carries for 82 yards along with a touchdown last Sunday helped Denver enjoy over 35 minutes of possession in a 24-17 divisional victory over San Diego. He had offseason knee surgery after being limited to 15 games over the past two seasons and now is one game away from a trip to the Super Bowl that will be about an hour's drive from Middletown, N.J., where Moreno grew up. "He has just been a rock for us back there," Manning said.

While New England knows what to expect from Moreno, Denver can't say the same about LeGarrette Blount, who had two carries for 13 yards the last time these teams met. Blount is rolling now with a career-high 189 rushing yards in a 34-20 win over Buffalo in Week #17, and 166 with four TDs in last Saturday's 43-22 rout of Indianapolis. "I think they do a good job with personnel and he's obviously another different weapon but he's big and physical," Denver coach John Fox said. "He's got skins on the wall in this league as far as a running back." The emergence of a New England running game that also features Stevan Ridley has taken the pressure off Brady, who was sacked 40 times this year for his highest total since 2001.

One of Brady's best efforts came against Denver, as he completed 34 of 50 passes for 344 yards, three scores and no interceptions. Brady has mostly been without his top five targets of 2012, with Wes Welker having departed to Denver and Rob Gronkowski limited to seven games before season-ending knee surgery. Julian Edelman has stepped up with a team-high 1,056 yards. "I think he's really led our receiving group with a tremendous amount of toughness, consistency," offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said. "He practices hard, prepares hard, he's on top of his game plan." McDaniels will return to Denver for the first time since he posted an 11-17 record as Broncos coach before he was fired during the 2010 season.

Manning will be able to target tight end Julius Thomas, who missed the first meeting with a knee injury. Thomas had a team-high 76 yards through the air last weekend on six catches, converting a key 3rd-and-17 in the closing minutes to help seal the win. "Excellent player -- size, speed, he's a good vertical receiver, he gets down the field on seams and flags and over routes and wheel routes, like he caught last week and things like that," New England coach Bill Belichick said. "He's also good on catch-and-run plays."

Welker will try to atone for his gaffe in the first meeting when he failed to inform his teammates in time that he was not going to field Ryan Allen's punt in overtime. Teammate Tony Carter ran into it, and the Patriots recovered the ball to lead to Stephen Gostkowski's 31-yard field goal with 1:56 left. Allen hurt his shoulder in the second quarter against the Colts, with Gostkowski punting the rest of the game. Allen returned to practice Wednesday, but Belichick did not say who will handle the punting duties.

•PREGAME NOTES: Under head coach Bill Belichick, New England has played in eight AFC Championship games, three of them played on the road.... The Patriots have gone 6-2 in those contests and that includes a 2-1 record on the road. The ‘under’ has produced a 5-3 mark.... Denver hasn’t been to the AFC Championship since the 2005-06 playoffs and it was doubled-up at Pittsburgh, 34-17.... Baltimore defeated New England 28-13 in last year’s AFC title game on the road. Prior to that outcome, the home team has won the six previous conference championships.

•KEY STATS
-- NEW ENGLAND is 9-1 ATS (+7.9 Units) versus incredible offensive teams - scoring 29 or more points/game in the second half of the season since 1992.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 26.0, OPPONENT 19.0.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 6-0 ATS (+6.0 Units) versus excellent offensive teams - averaging >=375 yards/game over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 37.7, OPPONENT 23.3.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 7-0 ATS (+7.0 Units) against AFC West division opponents over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 35.9, OPPONENT 18.3.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 24-8 ATS (+15.2 Units) after gaining 175 or more rushing yards last game since 1992.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 28.0, OPPONENT 17.5.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 8-0 OVER (+8.0 Units) versus excellent passing teams with a completion pct. of 64% or better over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 37.1, OPPONENT 27.0.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 11-1 OVER (+9.9 Units) versus good offensive teams - averaging >=350 yards/game over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 36.9, OPPONENT 26.5.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 18-5 OVER (+12.5 Units) after allowing 6 or more yards/play in their previous game over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 33.8, OPPONENT 21.7.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 17-4 against the 1rst half line (+12.6 Units) in road games vs. excellent passing teams with a completion pct. of 64% or better since 1992.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 15.0, OPPONENT 10.0.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 7-0 UNDER (+7.0 Units) the 1rst half total versus good passing teams averaging 7 or more passing yards/att. over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 11.6, OPPONENT 10.3.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 13-2 UNDER (+10.8 Units) the 1rst half total versus good offensive teams - scoring 24 or more points/game over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 11.9, OPPONENT 9.7.

-- NEW ENGLAND is 7-0 UNDER (+7.0 Units) the 1rst half total after gaining 400 or more total yards in their previous game this season.
The average score was NEW ENGLAND 7.6, OPPONENT 6.6.

-- DENVER is 40-17 OVER (+21.3 Units) when playing against a top-level team (Win Pct. > 75%) since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 22.8, OPPONENT 24.8.

-- DENVER is 46-19 OVER (+25.1 Units) versus good rushing teams - averaging >=130 rushing yards/game since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 24.4, OPPONENT 23.2.

-- DENVER is 30-12 OVER (+16.8 Units) versus very good offensive teams - scoring 27 or more points/game since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 23.3, OPPONENT 27.8.

-- DENVER is 17-4 OVER (+12.6 Units) after leading their last 3 games by 7+ points at the half since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 28.9, OPPONENT 21.6.

-- DENVER is 11-2 OVER (+8.8 Units) after 3 or more consecutive wins over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 34.5, OPPONENT 22.3.

-- DENVER is 9-1 UNDER (+7.9 Units) in home games revenging an upset loss against opponent as a road favorite since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 23.6, OPPONENT 11.5.

-- FOX is 11-1 UNDER (+9.9 Units) in home games versus mistake free teams - 42 or less penalty yards per game in all games he has coached since 1992.
The average score was FOX 17.6, OPPONENT 16.8.

-- DENVER is 14-2 against the 1rst half line (+11.8 Units) in home games versus good rushing teams - averaging >=130 rushing yards/game in the second half of the season since 1992.
The average score was DENVER 17.3, OPPONENT 5.6.

-- DENVER is 7-0 OVER (+7.0 Units) the 1rst half total when playing against a top-level team (Win Pct. > 75%) over the last 3 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 14.4, OPPONENT 21.4.

-- DENVER is 35-15 OVER (+18.5 Units) the 1rst half total versus excellent punt coverage teams, allowing The average score was DENVER 12.7, OPPONENT 11.0.

-- DENVER is 13-3 UNDER (+9.7 Units) the 1rst half total versus good passing teams averaging 235 or more passing yards/game over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 15.2, OPPONENT 8.8.

-- DENVER is 11-2 UNDER (+8.8 Units) the 1rst half total versus good offensive teams - averaging >=350 yards/game over the last 2 seasons.
The average score was DENVER 14.5, OPPONENT 8.8.

•HEAD-TO-HEAD HISTORY
The Patriots rallied from a 24-0 deficit in Week 12 to defeat the Broncos 34-31 in a SNF matchup. New England closed as a one-point home underdog and the combined 65 points, 41 coming in the second-half, jumped ‘over’ the closing total of 54. Including this win, the Patriots have won and covered the last four matchups against the Broncos. Quarterback Tom Brady is 10-4 versus Peyton Manning all-time, 2-1 in the playoffs. They’ve met twice in the conference championship, with Brady winning in 2003 and Manning winning in 2006.

--DENVER is 10-8 against the spread versus NEW ENGLAND since 1992.
--DENVER is 10-8 straight up against NEW ENGLAND since 1992.
--12 of 18 games in this series have gone OVER THE TOTAL since 1992.

--DENVER is 9-9 versus the first half line when playing against NEW ENGLAND since 1992.
--13 of 18 games in this series have gone OVER THE FIRST HALF TOTAL since 1992.

--Patriots are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
--Over is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings.
--Over is 7-2 in the last 9 meetings in Denver.

--Favorite is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 meetings.
--Home team is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 meetings.


72% OF BETS ARE ON THE PATS DRIVING THE OPENING LINE OF 7 AS LOW AS 4 BEFORE SETTLING IN AT 5
67% ARE BETTING THE OVER MOVING THE OPENING LINE FROM 54 TO 57

MY PLAYS PATS +5 and OVER 56½

NFL DIVISIONAL PLAYOFFS part 2

NFC Divisional Playoffs
Kickoff: Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET
Line: San Francisco -1, Total: 41½

The 49ers seek their eighth straight victory on Sunday when they visit a Panthers team that is 11-1 SU (8-3-1 ATS) in its past dozen games, including a 10-9 win at San Francisco on Nov. 10.

The Niners gained a pathetic 151 total yards in that Week 10 loss to Carolina, which countered with only 250 total yards. That improved the Panthers to 15-3 ATS (11-7 SU) all-time in this series, including 7-2 ATS (5-4 SU) at home. This year, they are 7-1 SU (6-1-1 ATS) in Charlotte, where they hold visitors to a paltry 12.0 PPG. But San Francisco's 23-20 win in Green Bay gives the club four straight road victories (3-0-1 ATS), and improves its outstanding road record this season to 7-2 SU (7-1-1 ATS). Its offense has tallied 378 total YPG in its past four contests (three on road), including 159 rushing YPG on 5.2 YPC. The Niners are also 9-1 ATS when facing a top-level team (75%+ win pct.) since 2011, outscoring these elite opponents by an average score of 30 to 18. Not only is Carolina 16-4 ATS after playing its last game on the road under Ron Rivera, but all good NFL teams (60% to 75% win pct.) off an extremely close road win by three points or less, facing a winning team with a line of +3 to -3 are 36-12 ATS (75%) since 1983. Both teams have some injuries of concern for Sunday, as the 49ers could be without CB Carlos Rogers (hamstring) and TE Demarcus Dobbs (knee), while the Panthers have two key players, RB Jonathan Stewart (knee) and DT Colin Cole (calf), who are listed as questionable.

The 49ers are the rare team that has actually scored more points on the road (26.3 PPG) than at home (24.0 PPG) this season. In last week's victory in frigid Green Bay, they ran for 167 yards on just 30 carries (5.6 YPC), and outgained the Packers by 100 yards (381 to 281). San Francisco's ground game has been stellar all season with 139 rushing YPG on 4.4 YPC, thanks mostly to RB Frank Gore, who has 1,194 rushing yards on 296 attempts (4.0 YPC) in his 17 games. Although he had a subpar outing last week (66 yards on 20 carries), Gore was able to score a touchdown for the fourth straight time in a postseason game. For his playoff career, he has compiled 690 total yards and 5 TD in six games, averaging a strong 4.9 yards per carry. QB Colin Kaepernick had another monster postseason performance last week with 325 total yards (227 passing, 98 rushing), improving his playoff record to 3-1. In these four postseason games, Kaepernick has thrown for 256 YPG (9.3 YPA) with 5 TD and 3 INT, while running for 362 yards on an unbelievable 11.3 YPC and three touchdowns. Despite the Panthers' tough run defense, Gore was still able to rush for 82 yards on 16 carries (5.1 YPC) against them while Kaepernick added 16 yards on four rushes. If the duo is not able to run the football, Kaepernick has three talented receivers that can move the ball through the air in TE Vernon Davis and WRs Anquan Boldin and Michael Crabtree. Although Davis and Boldin have combined for 2,104 receiving yards and 21 TD this season, both were shut down in Week 10 versus Carolina, combining for just four receptions for 25 yards and 0 TD. Crabtree didn't play in that game, but he sure made his presence felt last week in Green Bay with eight catches for 125 yards. That gives him 410 receiving yards and 3 TD over four career playoff games, all in the past two seasons. Defensively, the 49ers have been outstanding in all facets this season. They ranked among the top-seven teams in the NFL in scoring defense (17.0 PPG, 3rd), rushing defense (96 YPG, 4th), total defense (317 YPG, 5th), third-down defense (34%, 6th) and passing defense (221 YPG, 7th) during the regular season. San Francisco was able to limit a great Packers offense to 20 points and 281 yards last week, holding them to 3-of-11 conversions on third downs. The Niners run defense has been outstanding all season (3.8 YPC), and has been even better on the road (88 YPG on 3.6 YPC). In the nine away tilts this year, San Francisco has limited host teams to 299 total YPG on 4.9 yards per play. The unit has also forced at least two turnovers in 15-of-17 games this season, totaling 30 takeaways. But the Panthers are not a team that gives up the ball easily.

Carolina has been able to win 11 of its past 12 games because it has committed a total of 10 turnovers during this stretch. QB Cam Newton has completed 63.3% of his passes for 2,494 yards (208 YPG), 7.2 YPA, 18 TD and 8 INT during this 12-game stretch, but has also kept drives alive with his legs this season with 585 rushing yards (5.3 YPC) and six touchdowns. But he was bottled up in the Week 10 win in San Francisco, throwing for just 169 yards on 5.3 YPA, and rushing for a mere 15 yards on eight carries. Despite that lousy performance, Newton helped the Panthers finish the regular season fifth in the NFL in offensive time of possession (31:53), fourth in third-down conversions (44%) and seventh in red-zone efficiency (58% TD rate). But despite having a ball-control, drive-sustaining, TD-converting offense with a limited amount of turnovers, they somehow average only 317 total YPG (26th in NFL) with 22.9 PPG (18th in league). A big part of that has to do with a passing offense that doesn't gain a lot of yards (190 YPG, 29th in NFL) and doesn't get a ton of big plays either (10.4 yards per reception, 23rd in league). Top WR Steve Smith (745 rec. yards, 4 TD) missed the season finale with a knee injury, but he is probable for Sunday. Smith secured six catches for 63 yards against the Niners in Week 10, and he has had some huge performances in his eight career playoff games, totaling 782 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns. TE Greg Olsen led the Panthers in receptions (73), receiving yards (816) and touchdowns (six) this year, but he had just one catch for 14 yards in the win over San Francisco. Carolina's running game has been strong this season (127 YPG, 11th in NFL), and was able to grind out 109 yards on 31 carries (3.5 YPC) in that victory. RB DeAngelo Williams (843 rush yards, 4 TD) led the way with 46 yards on just eight attempts (5.8 YPC), and he may have to carry a bigger workload if Jonathan Stewart (180 rush yards, 3.8 YPC) cannot suit up. On defense, the Panthers are sound in all facets. They finished the regular season with a league-leading 60 sacks, while ranking second in the NFL in scoring defense (15.1 PPG), second in total defense (301 YPG), second in rushing defense (87 YPG) and third in red-zone defense (42% TD rate). Although Carolina allowed opposing quarterbacks to complete 66.6% of their passes (3rd-worst in NFL), the club still finished sixth in passing defense (214 YPG) with more interceptions (20) than touchdowns allowed (17). For the season, the Panthers forced at least one turnover in 15 of 16 games, and tallied 2+ takeaways 10 times, including the win over the Niners.

Public perception is the 49ers have advantage on defense and maybe even at the QB spot but if you watch the games this year or have looked at the numbers neither are true. Just as dominant will be the Carolina defense, since week 6 Panthers have only given up over 20 points once and they keep it going this week.

The play: CAROLINA +1

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