ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 25: Rob Gronkowski #87 celebrates his touchdown withTom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots during NFL game action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 25, 2011 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
New England brings a Week 1 reputation for OVER bets to its game Sunday at Tennessee. So why are more bettors siding with the UNDER 47?
New England has been almost a guaranteed OVER bet in September lately, and they are 12-4 favoring the OVER in the past 16 Week 1 games. But more than half of the betting action is on the UNDER 47 in their game against the Titans, according to the NFL consensus data at OddsShark.com, SBNation's pro football lines provider.
"The Pats have played OVER in seven straight September games, but the point spread is also seeing heavy action here," said Jack Randall of OddsShark. "It opened around -7, climbed to -8, but now is down as low as -4.5 at one book."
It is also the game where oddsmakers are cheering heavily for Tennessee.
"It has the most betting action on it and we are currently sitting at about 90 per cent on the Pats, so needless to say, we are Tennessee fans today," said Kevin Bradley of Bovada.
After falling one game short of the ultimate prize last season, the New England Patriots will look to start off another successful regular season on the road against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field. New England is a 6-point road favorite.
What needs to be said about Tom Brady and Bill Belichick's New England Patriots? A consistent powerhouse both straight up and ATS, the Patriots finished the 2011 regular season with a 13-3 straight up record and a 9-6-1 ATS record.
A pillar of consistency, the offense scored 30 points or more in an astounding 12 of 16 games last season. With Tom Brady at the helm of a loaded passing attack, there is no reason to expect anything less than another 12+ win season and another AFC East title for the Patriots.
Tennessee quietly put together a solid season last year, going 9-7 straight up, though they weren't much help to bettors, going just 6-9-1 ATS. Some will be less than impressed with the 9-7 record considering the Titans had one of the easiest schedules in the NFL last year, but they also had to deal with an injury to speedy wideout Kenny Britt and inconsistent play from franchise running back Chris Johnson.
With Britt healthy and Johnson not dealing with a holdout, the Titans offense could put together a nice year in 2012.
Who covers this spread likely comes down to quarterback Jake Locker. Named the starter over veteran Matt Hasselbeck, Locker has been groomed for the starting role and has the ability to make big plays with his feet as well as his arm.
We know what we're going to get out of Tom Brady and the Patriots' offense Sunday; the question is whether or not Tennessee can keep up to make this a close game. It's certainly possible, but we're leaning towards the proven entity in this one. New England likely has a chip on its shoulder after losing in the Super Bowl, and they might take it out on Tennessee this week. We like the OVER.
PICK: OVER 47