Thursday, September 11, 2014

New England Patriots Vs. Minnesota Vikings: NE -2.5 (-120) (Pinnacle)

Market Watch

There hasn't been as much of an overreaction in the markets for Week 2 as I expected, but when I look at this game I scratch my head. The LVH had the Pats as -6 point favorites a week ago, but it re-opened at -3 with juice on Sunday night/Monday morning. Since then we've seen juice switch to the Vikings and we can now grab -2.5 at an affordable price.  Despite what we saw from both teams last week, I think New England should be -3.5 (if not higher). 78% of the tickets are on the Patriots.

Bottom Line

Our lasting image of Tom Brady is one that went 2 for 18 on passes that went 15+ yards last week. He rushed throws and never looked comfortable behind that OL in the 2nd half in Miami. Is that cause for concern? Sure. Without a competent OL, it doesn't matter who is lining up at the skill positions. The Pats will also have to contend with deafening noise in Minnesota, especially if the Vikes grab a lead.

But we're still talking about the Vikings here. Zimmer is going to get the most out of his guys, but he doesn't have the same talent that he did in Cincinnati. The Patriots won't get shut down by this group of defenders.

We also have M Cassel on the field. Theoretically, he should thrive with the likes of AP and Patterson, but he's still gonna have to make plays to win this game. I have faith that this New England defense is going to be good this year, especially if their secondary remains healthy.

It may be more competitive than it looked like it would be a week ago, but I'll be surprised if the Patriots start the season 0-2. Until then, let's hold off on the panic button.

NFL Pick: NE -2.5.

Read more: Week 2 Picks