The New England Patriots will be looking to become the first team to win consecutive Super Bowl championships in 13 years as they prepare to take on the Philadelphia Eagles as early 5.5-point favorites on the Super Bowl odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
New England clinched its fourth Super Bowl berth in seven years with a 24-20 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday and rides a 13-1 straight-up run into this year’s Eagles vs. Patriots Super Bowl matchup at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
However, the Patriots failed to cover as 8-point home favorites in their win over the Jaguars, putting the brakes on a six-game against-the-spread win streak on home turf and continuing a trend that has seen underdogs prevail at the sportsbooks in nine of this season’s 10 playoff contests.
The Patriots return to the Super Bowl after stunning the Atlanta Falcons in a 34-28 overtime win as 3-point chalk in last season’s big game. New England subsequently opened the current NFL campaign as a +325 favorite to successfully defend its title and now is pegged as a short -225 moneyline bet on the Super Bowl odds.
Far less was expected of the Eagles, who enter the week as a +185 wager after opening the season at a distant +3800 on the Super Bowl futures following back-to-back 7-9 seasons.
Led by second-year quarterback Carson Wentz, the Eagles emerged as legitimate Super Bowl contenders during a 10-1 SU start that lifted them to +350 on the NFL futures. A season-ending injury to their star quarterback quickly eroded the squad’s Super Bowl odds, which tumbled to a distant +1400 by the end of the regular season, but the team has been buoyed by the strong playoff performance of veteran passer Nick Foles.
Foles has led the Eagles to SU wins in four of five starts since taking over for Wentz, and he celebrated his 29th birthday this past weekend by leading all quarterbacks with 352 passing yards in the conference championships. The Eagles defense has risen to the occasion during Wentz’s absence, holding opponents to 8.25 points per game over their past four outings.
However, Philadelphia will be eager to avoid becoming a dubious historical Super Bowl footnote in this year’s big game.
The Eagles met New England in their last championship appearance at Super Bowl XXXIX, falling 24-21 as 7-point underdogs to hand the Patriots their third championship victory in four years, a feat the Patriots are poised to repeat this year. Philadelphia also is winless SU in two previous Super Bowl appearances.
Thumbnail photo via Eric Hartline/USA TODAY Sports Images
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