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New England Patriots vs. Buffalo Bills Point Spread - Pick

New England Patriots (5-2 SU, 4-3 ATS) vs. Buffalo Bills (2-5 SU, 3-4 ATS)
Week 8 NFL
Date/Time: Monday Night Football, October 29, 2018 at 8:15PM EDT
Where: New Era Field, Buffalo, New York

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper,

Point Spread: NE -13.5/BUF +13.5
Over/Under Total: 44.5

The New England Patriots come to New Era Field to take on the Buffalo Bills on Monday Night Football. For the Patriots, they have once again been able to turn things around on a dime, overcoming a 1-2 start to win 4 straight, including Sunday's exciting 38-31 win over the Chicago Bears. For Buffalo, they're just trying to pick up the pieces after a rough road-loss to the Colts on Sunday. It's been a rough start For Buffalo and four road games in five weeks hasn't helped. Maybe being back at home can give them a boost. Either way, at 2-5, they need a positive development in a big way on MNF.

The Bills have been weird this season. On one hand, you have them beating the Vikings on the road, 27-6, and upsetting the Titans. Then they suffer monumental butt-whippings, like a 47-3 loss to Baltimore, a 22-0 shutout to the Packers, and then Sunday's gross 37-5 loss to the Colts. It would have almost been better just to get shut out rather than putting up a 5-spot to a team that hasn't allowed such a small amount of points in four seasons. At 3-4 against-the-spread, they haven't been horrible perhaps, but more often than not this season, the spread hasn't even been remotely-close with Buffalo involved.

The Buffalo offense is in a state of shambles. They are averaging 11.6 points a game and in some spots are utterly incompetent. It's part of the growing pains of a rookie QB who is operating at a major deficit when it comes to the offensive line and difference-makers on offense. Josh Allen could very well develop into a force one day. But he's not ready and Derek Anderson is no longer terribly viable at QB. It's hard when you score two touchdowns in your last four games. LeSean McCoy is a fading force and now he's banged-up too, along with backup Chris Ivory. Their leading receiver is Zay Jones, who has just 226 yards.


The Buffalo defense is supposed to be their one saving grace. On Sunday, Andrew Luck threw 4 touchdowns, while Marlon Mack ran for 126 yards—not exactly a great performance from the "D." And why would it be with virtually no support on the other side of the ball. The fact that they've held up as well as they have is remarkable. In the four games leading to Sunday's massacre, the Bills had allowed just 60 combined points. And despite the 4 TDs they allowed, the secondary is actually quite good, allowing just 156 yards to Luck last week. They should at least be able to give Tom Brady something to think about on Sunday.

The Patriots really had their hands full in a tough spot in Soldier Field against the upstart Bears. There were some anxious moments, with the Pats relying on some big plays to thwart the Patriots, including a kickoff return for a TD, a blocked punt for a TD, and a last-ditch Chicago Hail Mary falling one yard short in a heart-stopping final play. But after beating the Chiefs and hanging on to beat the Bears, they are winning the tough games and showing they once again have the chops and are still to be taken very seriously.

Injuries seem to be looming large this season on the Pats' offense. They have already suffered losses in the running back corps and we saw surging rookie back Sony Michel leave the game with a knee injury on Sunday. Gronkowski missed the last game. Still, he should be back sooner than later and Tom Brady is still in vintage form. They got a big boost from speedster Cordarrelle Patterson on special teams. Julian Edelman is getting in the swing of things and caught a TD on Sunday. Chris Hogan is a major contributor, while RB James White caught two TD passes on Sunday. X-factor receiver Josh Gordon is becoming more of a factor and had 100 yards receiving on Sunday.

How far the Patriots go could hinge on the defense. They weren't great on Sunday, giving up 333 yards to Mitch Trubisky, along with numerous big running plays. They usually make up for it pretty well, but all told this season, they are a bottom-third defense in all reality. With all due reverence to the McCourty brothers, Patrick Chung, Duron Harmon, and Stephon Gilmore, the secondary hasn't been getting it done this season. The defense against the run has been OK at best, with not much of a pass-rush to speak of. With 71 combined points allowed in their last two games, although they were wins, it's clear the defense needs to sharpen up a bit, even if they are poised to face the worst offense in the NFL this week.

This divisional game has a lot of things to take into consideration. It's in Buffalo and their defense could be a problem. Brady and the Pats might not be shot from a cannon in this one and they need to cover a number as road favorites. It's a lot of points to lay on the road with a defense that has shown itself to be readily-exploitable. The Bills are a hard team to get behind, but maybe they can put up a few scores, have their "D" dig in at home, and get the cover. I'll take the Bills.

Loot's Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I'm betting on the Buffalo Bills plus 13.5 points. Tired of your credit card not working for sportsbook deposit? End that problem today by signing up and betting the Pats vs. Bills MNF game at Bovada Sportsbook where your credit card WILL work and where you'll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus!

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