Patriots

Oddsmakers drop Patriots' 2020 NFL season win total to new low

Oddsmakers drop Patriots' 2020 NFL season win total to new low

Confidence in the New England Patriots entering the 2020 NFL season seems to be waning.

Well, at least among oddsmakers.

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The Patriots, despite losing longtime quarterback Tom Brady to free agency in March, have remained the betting favorite to win the AFC East for most of the offseason. That changed, recently, when the Buffalo Bills became the favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook to claim the division crown next season.

New England also had the third-best odds to win the AFC in 2020 throughout the offseason, but it has fallen to fourth at +1200. The Indianapolis Colts are just ahead of the Patriots in third with +1100 odds to win the conference.

The Patriots' season win total has been lowered, too. Here's the latest number and odds, courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Over 8.5 wins: -130
Under 8.5 wins: +107

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It's strange to see the Patriots' win total be less than 10, but without a top-tier quarterback leading the offense, it's tough to just assume New England's streak of 17 consecutive seasons with 10-plus wins will continue.

The schedule also makes it hard for the Patriots to hit that 10-win milestone. Two of their first five games are against the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and perennial NFC contenders the Seattle Seahawks. Both games are on the road. After a Week 6 bye, the Patriots begin a stretch of five weeks during which they play four playoff teams from 2019, including the Baltimore Ravens and defending NFC champion San Francisco 49ers. The schedule gets easier after that with New England's final six games including just one playoff team from last season. The Patriots' last two games also are at home.

That said, the Patriots don't need to extend their 10-win season streak to hit the over on this win total prop bet. An above-average performance from Stidham, a veteran defense that's still really talented, and the best head coach in NFL history should be enough for the Patriots to reach nine or more wins. 

Cam Newton opens up about replacing Tom Brady, excitement about Patriots offense

Cam Newton opens up about replacing Tom Brady, excitement about Patriots offense

I don’t know when we’ll get to hear from Patriots quarterback Cam Newton. My suspicion is it will be later rather than sooner.

But everything we’ve wondered since the Patriots signed him? Everything we’ve theorized might change with the Patriots offense? Everything we wondered about Newton following Tom Brady?

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Newton hit it during a YouTube show with Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz and Todd Gurley that posted on Monday.

The hour-long program jumps from topic to topic and it’s not until about the 34-minute mark where Newton begins discussing joining the Patriots.

After a little talk about motivation (we knew he was motivated) and perceived disrespect (also knew that), Newton hit on actual football and succeeding Tom Brady in what I thought was the meatiest part of the piece.

“We have to talk about the elephant in the room,” said Newton. “And it’s like, ‘You know who you coming after?’ And it’s like, ‘Yeah. Great.’

“What he was, what he is? Is great. Needs no … even … talking about it.

“But one thing about it though, ‘Coach (Josh) McDaniels, you able to call some stuff you ain’t ever been able to call now. You getting a dog. You getting one of these ticked off dogs too, that like bruh.”

Newton began pretending to read off a sheet of paper.

“And I’m looking at the schedule like, “Who we playing? THAT team passed on me. THAT team passed on me, they coulda came and got me. THEY hollered at me. I even asked my agent, like, ‘Yo what’s up with …” Bro. I’m gonna take this time with the COVID and I’m gonna commit to myself.”

Newton also related how he got the news the Patriots were coming after him.

“My agent hit me, I was — no cap — I was working out and he was like, ‘Hey man, we just got interest from a team.’

“And I’m like, ‘OK, who?’

“And he was like New ENGLAND …”

The camera cuts to Beckham, who sits up straight in his chair.

Newton continued, “I said, ‘Hold on. How, how is me and Belichick gonna mesh? You know what I’m saying?’ ”

“That was the first thing I thought!” Cruz interjected.

“Because it’s like perception…” said Newton.

OBJ then cut in with a minute-long verbal journey to nowhere before concluding with, “So for me, watching you and now to feel that vindication and to be going to Belichick, there is no, like, ‘How is it gonna work?’ For me, all he wanna do is put you in a position to succeed and I’m happy to see it.”

Odell Beckham Jr. had more praise for Bill Belichick in Cam Newton sit-down

Odell Beckham Jr. had more praise for Bill Belichick in Cam Newton sit-down

Odell Beckham Jr. recently insisted he's staying with the Cleveland Browns this season, and we'll take him at his word.

But the star wide receiver still really, really likes New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.

Beckham posted a sit-down conversation Monday on YouTube featuring himself, former wide receiver Victor Cruz, running back Todd Gurley and new Patriots quarterback Cam Newton.

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When the discussion turned to Newton and how he'd "mesh" with Belichick in New England, Beckham piped up to insist perception isn't reality with the Patriots coach, and that Belichick will help Newton thrive in New England.

 

"Watching you and now to feel that vindication and to be going to Belichick, there is no, 'How is it going to work?' " Beckham told Newton. "For me, all he wants to do is put you in a place to succeed. And I'm happy to see it."

While some players (looking at you, Lane Johnson) view Belichick as a curmudgeonly autocrat who hates fun, Beckham is a fan of Belichick who knows what the head coach can get out of his players.

Beckham's opinion is nothing new: Cleveland.com's Mary Kay Cabot recently told our Tom E. Curran that Beckham has long been enamored with Belichick and Tom Brady's success in New England and "always wistfully wished he could be a part of that" from afar.

After Brady left New England this offseason, it was hard to envision Beckham scrambling to catch passes from Jarrett Stidham. But Newton and Beckham are close and have worked out together several times this offseason, so perhaps Beckham's "wistful" thoughts of joining the Patriots will return.