The following is a collection of expert betting analysis surrounding the New England Patriots’ Week 5 matchup with the Houston Texans from VSiN contributors.
The New England Patriots look great in teasers for bettors who can get them at -8.5. There aren’t a ton of those lines available, as most sportsbooks have moved to 9 or 9.5 to get some teaser protection. There aren’t a lot of interested parties in the Texans at any number, so most risk managers would rather aim high on the spread rather than get buried by teasers.
The Patriots are 1-3, but Mac Jones has not played like the QB of a 1-3 team. The rookie hasn’t found a ton of big plays, but he has completed 70% of his passes and has stayed away from most of the crippling turnovers. His three turnovers against New Orleans weren’t all his fault, including the pick-six that bounced off the receiver’s hands.
The loss of safety valve James White is concerning, but Jones has been able to find Brandon Bolden with some regularity and has also developed a really nice rapport with Jakobi Meyers. The Patriots are 31st in red-zone efficiency this season, a stat that should be on the upswing as Jones gets more reps and more experience inside the 20.
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If nothing else, we know that Bill Belichick eats rookie QBs for breakfast and lunch on Sundays. He is 22-6 against rookie QBs since he took over the Patriots in 2000. It doesn’t seem like he’ll be losing to Davis Mills in this spot. Mills has five interceptions and just two touchdown passes. The Texans have scored 30 points in three games since the opener, a game that was played by Tyrod Taylor.
With Taylor still not eligible to come off of injured reserve, it looks like another week with a Texans loss. The Patriots should be able to cover the teased spread of -2.5 as a result.
Pick: New England Patriots -2.5 (6-point teaser with Washington +8.5)
The Patriots (1-3 SU, 2-2 ATS) lost a heartbreaker to Tampa Bay on the big stage Sunday night as Nick Folk’s 56-yard kick hit the upright in the final minute, though the Patriots did cover as home dogs. It’s not often that a 1-3 team will be viewed as an appealing survivor option/teaser leg on the road, but this may be an exception. The Texans (1-3 SU, 2-2 ATS) were playing spirited ball with Taylor at quarterback but have been uncompetitive since Mills has filled in due to Taylor’s injury in Week 2. The Texans lost to the Bills 40-0, accumulating just over 100 yards, and amazingly were held to just 4 yards in the first half. The Patriots opened as 7-point favorites on the lookahead line, but the pitiful showing by the Texans has the line all the way up to 9.5, with 39.5 as one of the lower totals we will see all season.