Patriots

NFL odds: Patriots vs. Dolphins Week 2 spread among biggest of decade

NFL odds: Patriots vs. Dolphins Week 2 spread among biggest of decade

The New England Patriots opened as massive betting favorites over the Miami Dolphins entering their Week 2 matchup in south Florida, and the spread has continued to climb into record territory.

The Patriots are 18.5-point favorites at the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas as of early Tuesday afternoon. The Dolphins lost 59-10 to the Baltimore Ravens at home in Week 1, and they are likely to be the worst team in the NFL this season.

It's still not close to the biggest Patriots spread ever. New England entered Week 12 of the 2007 season as 25-point favorites at home against the Philadelphia Eagles. The Pats were 10-0 at the time and Donovan McNabb was out with an injury, forcing the Eagles to start backup quarterback A.J. Feeley. Philly nearly pulled off the upset but lost 31-28.

It's certainly possible the Patriots could close as 20-plus point favorites by the time kickoff rolls around Sunday in Miami. The last time the Patriots were favored by 20 or more points was against the Indianapolis Colts in 2011. The Colts were 0-11 and Peyton Manning was out of the season because of an injury. The Colts covered in a 31-24 loss.

New England's most recent game as a favorite of 17-plus points came on Christmas Eve in 2016. The Patriots were 17-point favorites over the New York Jets and won 41-3 at Gillette Stadium.

The largest points spread since 1970 was in 2013 when the Denver Broncos were 26.5-point favorites against the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars covered in a 35-19 loss.

The Broncos-Jaguars and Patriots-Colts matchups noted above are the only games this decade where a team was favored by 20-plus points. If the Patriots remain 18.5-point favorites entering Week 2, it will be the fourth-biggest spread of the decade, trailing only 2013 Broncos-Jaguars, 2011 Patriots-Colts and 2013 Seahawks-Jaguars (Seattle by 19.5 points).

Click for where Pats stand in latest Super Bowl LIV odds>>>

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Oklahoma watched Patriots' Super Bowl LI comeback before overcoming 28-3 deficit vs. Baylor

Oklahoma watched Patriots' Super Bowl LI comeback before overcoming 28-3 deficit vs. Baylor

The Oklahoma Sooners coaching staff could not have picked a more perfect week to show its players highlights of the New England Patriots' epic comeback from trailing 28-3 to beat the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.

Why's that?

The No. 8 ranked Sooners actually found themselves trailing 28-3 in the second quarter of Saturday night's road game against undefeated and No. 13 ranked Baylor Bears.

What's more, a second-half fumble played a role in the comeback, which is exactly what happened to the Patriots when linebacker Dont'a Hightower caused Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan to fumble, leading to a New England touchdown on the ensuing drive.

The similarities, amazingly, don't end there. Oklahoma completed the comeback with a 34-31 victory. The Patriots scored the same number of points in their overtime win versus the Falcons in Super Bowl LI.

Oklahoma cornerback Parnell Motley gave this reaction to the Norman Transcript's Tyler Palmateer:

“We watched a few clips,” said cornerback Parnell Motley, whose forced fumble was part of the rally. “[We watched] Virginia (basketball), the struggles they went through, when they lost to a 16-seed (in 2018) and when they almost did (in 2019), but they redeemed themselves. Another (clip) they watched was the Patriots and the Falcons (Super Bowl) and it was just the same scenario. It's crazy how ironic it is. They were up 28-3. We watched how the Patriots faced adversity and how things went. It was a great win, my team responded."

The Sooners absolutely had to win this game to keep their slim College Football Playoff hopes alive. Oklahoma is 9-1, but the Big 12 schedule doesn't offer it many more good opportunities to establish a playoff-worthy résumé. The Sooners entered last weekend ranked No. 10 in the latest CFP rankings, so unless a bunch of teams ahead of them lose, don't expect to see Oklahoma back in the playoff this season.

However, the memories of this historic comeback Saturday night at Baylor will stick with these Oklahoma players for a long time, and the experience certainly will help those who wind up playing on Sundays in the near future.

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Crazy stat highlights crazy contrast in success between Patriots, Knicks since 2018

Crazy stat highlights crazy contrast in success between Patriots, Knicks since 2018

The New England Patriots and New York Knicks are at opposite ends of the spectrum in terms of well-run sports franchises. 

The Patriots are the gold standard with 19 consecutive winning seasons, nine conference championships and six Super Bowl titles in the last 20 years. They are the NFL's greatest dynasty, and the party isn't over yet as Tom Brad and Co. sit atop the AFC standings with a 9-1 record entering Week 12.

The Knicks, meanwhile, have been an absolute disaster. Since the start of the 2001-02 season, New York has reached the playoffs just four times with zero conference finals appearances over that span. The Knicks haven't played in the postseason since 2012-13, and after an abysmal 3-10 start to the 2019-20 season, don't expect Madison Square Garden to host any NBA playoff games in the near future.

If you think that's bad enough for the Knicks, we're about to make it even worse by dropping a crazy stat. Since 2018, the Patriots and Knicks have won the same amount of regular season games despite New York playing in 69 more of them!

The worst part about the Knicks' situation is the misery doesn't appear to be ending any time soon. The Knicks don't have any generational talents (sorry, R.J. Barrett fans) despite consistently finishing near the bottom of the standings this decade. They also haven't been able to lure free agents despite the advantages the New York market provides, and the biggest failure might have come this summer when Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving took their talents to the rival Brooklyn Nets instead of MSG.

The Patriots have set a tremendous example for other teams in all sports to follow, and it would behoove the Knicks and other poorly run franchises to look toward New England for guidance.

Updated NFL playoff picture entering Week 12>>>

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