Bills vs. Patriots Total Prediction
The New England Patriots struggled offensively a week ago in Pittsburgh and will no longer have the services of deep threat receiver Josh Gordon. Will Tom Brady and Co. struggle to score again Sunday when they host the Buffalo Bills at 1:00 p.m. ET?
103 Buffalo Bills at 104 New England Patriots
1:00 p.m. ET, Sunday, December 23
Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
Public Betting Trends
According to oddsmakers from online sports book BetNow.eu, the Patriots are 13.5-point favorites to beat the Bills. The total, meanwhile, sits at 44.5 points. As of this writing, 57% of the public betting tickets are on the Patriots to cover the point spread.
LeSean McCoy (hamstring) was upgraded to full participation at Thursday's practice. It puts McCoy on track to suit up Sunday at Foxboro. Backup Chris Ivory (shoulder) was also back to full participation at Thursday's session. McCoy was held in check as a ball-carrier when he faced New England back in Week 8 (13 yards on 12 carries), though he had a strong game on the receiving end with six grabs for a season-high 82 yards. For fantasy purposes, he's just an RB3/flex.
New England Patriots
NFL suspended Patriots WR Josh Gordon indefinitely for violating the league's substance abuse policy. He's been placed on the reserve/commissioner suspended list, effective immediately. It's unclear what substance he tested positive for, though Gordon's struggles with both drugs and alcohol are well-documented. We've lost count of how many times Gordon has been suspended for substance abuse violations, though his latest ban could be a career-ender. Despite numerous second chances, the talented 27-year-old has yet to quiet his inner demons. While it's frustrating Gordon has squandered what could have been a remarkable career, his struggles with addiction are far bigger than football. Whether he returns to the NFL or not, we truly help Gordon gets the help he needs to turn his life around.
NFL Betting Trends
The Bills are just 1-4 against the spread in their last five games played in the month of December and are 4-10 ATS in their last 14 divisional games.
The Patriots have covered the spread in five of their last six divisional games and are 36-16 ATS in their last 42 games overall.
Without Gordon, the Patriots could choose to lean on rookie Sony Michel and their running game the next two weeks. Their offensive line has not held up well in pass protection and with both Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman looking like shells of their former selves, it would make sense for the Pats to keep the ball on the ground. On the other side, the Bills could get McCoy back this week, which would be big for their running game. At this point in his career, rookie Josh Allen is also more of a runner than a passer. With the clock constantly moving on Sunday, I like the under.
NFL Week 16 Prediction: Bills/Patriots under 44.5