Patriots

Giles: The one safe bet in Patriots-Eagles tonight

Patriots

It's game day for those of us degenerates who love betting on the randomness of preseason football.

And while we can't predict how either side will approach their second dress rehearsal, we can at least come up with a few reasons to justify some action on New England Patriots vs. Philadelphia Eagles.

PointsBet is our Official Sports Betting Partner and we may receive compensation if you place a bet on PointsBet for the first time after clicking our links.

New England vs. Philadelphia Point Spread

New England -1 (-110) at Philadelphia +1 (-110)

New England vs. Philadelphia Moneyline

New England -120, Philadelphia +100

New England opened as a -2.5 favorite with a moneyline at -135.  But the market has shifted towards Philadelphia.

Normally with a 1-point line, it's tempting to just jump on the moneyline and buy that extra point with the notion that the game almost certainly won't end in a tie. However, this is preseason football, and there's no overtime in preseason football anymore which allows for a better chance at a tie -- especially when neither team cares that much about winning.

As for picking a side, the common sentiment out of joint practices gave the edge to the Eagles. Jalen Hurts was said to be the most impressive quarterback on the field, but to be fair, the Patriots also were without their starting tight ends.

Still, it feels like the Eagles are healthier and playing better than a team that has a regular season win total of 6.5. (The Patriots are O/U 9.5 wins.)  But there have been rumblings that Philly's starters won't see much time in this game.

 

On the other hand, you have a legitimate quarterback competition unfolding for New England with Cam Newton and Mac Jones both jockeying for the Week 1 starting spot. One would imagine that they'll combine for a heavy majority of the reps. However, they're still lacking weapons: The only tight end to practice Tuesday was Devin Asiasi.

Patriots Talk Podcast: City of Brotherly Shove! Patriots’ QB competition heats up in Philly | Listen & Subscribe | Watch on YouTube

In conclusion, I lean towards Philadelphia but this is too much of a crap-shoot.

New England vs. Philadelphia Team Total

OVER 38 (-115), UNDER 38 (-105)

The Eagles fell to the Steelers 24-16 in their first preseason game for a total of 40 points, which went OVER the 36.  But Philadelphia only scored 16 points and all of those came in the first half. The Patriots' preseason opener narrowly survived the under (37 total) with their 22-13 win over Washington.

New England only added a 91-yard touchdown in the final two minutes after Ron Rivera inexplicably used his timeouts to stop the clock when Bill Belichick was content with letting Brian Hoyer take a knee and run out the clock.

The total opened at 38.5 so the market has already favored the under. But it feels like neither team will be fighting tooth and nail in the fourth quarter. Considering that the Patriots defense is expected to be the team's strength and that the offense is dealing with injuries at the tight end position (lots of running = running clock), I like the under.

Note: While we're dealing with a bunch of rain in Boston, the forecast in Philadelphia calls for temperatures in the mid-80's with partly cloudy skies and a slight breeze. So, no, weather shouldn't be a factor.

Bonus consideration

Our friends at PointsBet have odds for whether or not Mac Jones will take the first snap in the regular season opener. The rookie is +250 to take the first snap and -334 if Newton is under center.

Curran: For Patriots, it's not Cam vs. Mac; it's Mac vs. Mac

For those who are Jones believers, consider that +250 now before we see something tonight that indicates he's closer to taking over that role.