Whether you hate ’em or love ’em, you cannot deny that the New England Patriots have been absolutely dominant this season. The AFC Champions overcame several obstacles thrown at them and finished the regular season 14-2.
New England’s regular season performance is incredible considering Tom Brady missed four games and Rob Gronkowski only played in eight before undergoing season-ending back surgery (by the way New England is an absurd 10-0 ATS and straight up without Gronkowski this year). No matter the outcome on February 5th, the 2016-17 season will go down in history as one the most impressive performances by the Patriots.
Sure, the Pat’s 14-2 record is not as good as their undefeated ’07 regular season, but that’s just one piece of the pie. The ’16-’17 the Patriots have obliterated every spread thrown at them, which is something they have over the 18-1 Patriots of 2007, who finished the year a mediocre 10-9 ATS.
Including the regular season and postseason, New England posted an unheralded 15-3 ATS record (+11.68 units) this year. Even if they lose, this will be the most profitable single season in our database that goes back to 2003. If the Patriots win and cover the spread, they will join elite company. According to Oddshark’s Jon Campbell, the ’89 San Francisco 49ers (16-3 ATS) hold the best season ATS record of all time.
The following table displays New England’s closing spread in every game this season and the average support.
|Week||Spread||Percent of Tickets (%)|
The public-friendly Patriots have received on average 67.6% of spread bets this year—for what it’s worth that number jumps to 71.2% with Tom Brady under center—which is practically identical to the percent of spread tickets they’re getting in Super Bowl 51.
The Patriots have covered the spread by an average of 9.4 points this season, a number that certainly makes sportsbooks cringe. New England has made a living out of hurting the books time and time again this season.
Although it’s not as a compelling narrative as their spread performance, there was value in taking New England unders (they were the fourth most profitable under team (10-6, +3.90 units) in the regular season, a trend that runs contrary to the Falcons.
The table below displays how Patriots unders have performed this year and week by week ticket percentages.
|Week||Closing Total||Percent of Under Tickets (%)|
New England’s ability to dictate the tempo on offense and their much improved defense have both contributed to the team’s under success. Their offense finished sixth in the NFL in time of possession and the defense allowed the fewest points per game (15.6) in the league per NFL.com. Even though taking the Patriots under has not been as rewarding in the postseason (0-2), it’ll be interesting to see if this recent trend continues against the best over team in our database.
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