We know there’s a competitive integrity in the NFL, but Denver winning Sunday night’s week 16 Patriots at Broncos betting matchup would be beneficial for both franchises. Sean Payton has Denver (7-7) right in the playoff hunt after a rough start, and New England (3-11) is currently in line for the #2 draft pick.
The Broncos have gotten hot after a 1-5 start and have since won six of their last eight. The Pats’ have lost six of their last seven, so it’s no surprise that Denver is a -7.5 home favorite here – the only shocker may be that the line is not higher.
Why the Patriots Have Value at +7.5
55% of public betting being on the Patriots on Sunday night means there must be something bettors see on New England? This is a team that has been a little better on offense the last two games in a 21-18 win at Pittsburgh and a 27-17 loss to the Chiefs prior to that – not great but still some improvement from scoring 13 total points the previous three games.
The New England offense overall is atrocious, but QB Bailey Zappe has done some nice things since taking over the starting spot from Mac Jones. Zappe has connected on over 68% of his passes in each of the last two games and had 3 TD passes in the win over the Steelers.
Denver’s defense will give up chunks of yardage regardless of who the opposing offense is. The Broncos were torched for 185 yards on the ground by the Lions last week while Detroit QB Jared Goff also added 5 TD passes in the 42-17 win. Denver is 30th in the NFL in yards allowed and are dead last in the league vs. the run.
Why the Broncos Have Value at -7.5
The Denver defense might have some issues on paper, but a lot of those numbers came from earlier in the year when the Broncos were giving up 35 points to the Commanders, 31 to the Jets, and the unforgettable 70 in the loss to the Dolphins.
While they had been showing some improvement, the Denver defense did have a regression last week in the 25 point loss to the Lions. Detroit is also a very talented offense though, top 5 in the league in total yards, pass yards, rush yards, and points – and the Broncos were playing their third straight road game. Now Denver heads back home finally, facing a Patriots team that ranks last in the NFL in points scored at just 13.3.
Despite their struggles in the win column, New England is still very stout in their run defense (84.9 ypg) which means Russell Wilson and the Broncos passing game are the key to covering this number on SNF. Wilson has 4 TDs to 4 INTs his last three games and completed less than 58% of his passes twice over that span, but those were all in road contests as well.
Free Week 16 Patriots at Broncos Betting Pick
New England is in a tough spot here – having to go on the road to the atmosphere of Colorado on Christmas Eve night in a game that is meaningless except for potential draft seeding. The hook is big with the -7.5 point spread, but this is a game Denver absolutely has to have.
Free Pick: Denver -7.5