Two weeks ago, the New England Patriots had 5-to-1 odds to win Super Bowl LIII.
Since then, New England has lost a road divisional game on a once-in-a-lifetime play one week before losing to one of the league’s most talented teams on the road by one score.
The Patriots are a flawed football team, sure, but if you’re a New England fan (or a sports bettor), all is not lost. And if you are looking for a late-season Super Bowl pick to throw some cash on, the Patriots certainly still are worth a look.
OddsShark on Tuesday released an updated list of Super Bowl favorites (via Bovada).
That’s a fairly big jump for New England, dropping from 5-to-1 odds to 7-to-1. That could be in part because the Patriots now have lost the inside track to a first-round bye and home-field advantage in the divisional round, assuming they get that far.
But looking ahead, the Patriots’ would-be wild-card round opponent (as it stands now) would be the Baltimore Ravens. Bill Belichick-coached teams have fared very well against rookie quarterbacks and first-year QB Lamar Jackson likely would be getting the call under center in that game.
Assuming the Patriots won as the No. 3 seed, they would move on to face the No. 2 seed in the conference. That most likely would be the Houston Texans, a team the Patriots beat in Week 1, albeit at home and before Houston went on its current stretch of 10 wins in 11 games.
And if all continues to fall a certain way, and New England would go into Houston and win, that would set up an AFC Championship Game, likely either against the Los Angeles Chargers or Kansas City Chiefs. Going to LA shouldn’t scare the Patriots, and New England also beat the Chiefs earlier this season, while Andy Reid’s playoff issues are well-documented.
That entire scenario is predicated on the Patriots getting the third seed. It’s still very much possible they sneak into the second seed and get a much-needed bye with at least one home game, and if that happens, you can kiss the 7-to-1 odds good-bye.
Obviously, we’re dealing with a lot of ifs here, and even if the Patriots survived the AFC, they’d still have to actually win the Super Bowl.
Here’s the thing, though: For as many issues as the Patriots have, teams across the NFL have their own issues. Even in the NFC, the Los Angeles Rams all of a sudden forgot how to win, while the New Orleans Saints are only averaging 17 points per game over their last three games, which all happened to come outside the friendly confines of the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
We’re not trying to sit here and tell you the Patriots are going to win the Super Bowl or should even be considered the favorite. But if you’re looking to throw down some cash, there’s still some value in betting on Tom Brady and Co. Or, put it another way, do you really want to bet against them?
Thumbnail photo via Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY Sports