The Denver Broncos and New England Patriots could be the two best teams in the NFL, and on Sunday one will likely have a legitimate claim to that title. The Patriots are going to play host to the Broncos in Week 9, and it promises to be one of the best games of the week.
Denver has consistently been ranked among the league's top teams in power rankings, and for good reason. Aside from a misstep against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 3 — a 26-20 loss in overtime — the Broncos have won every game. Many of those games were won in dominant fashion, like the 41-20 destruction of the Arizona Cardinals, a surprisingly good team this year, or the 42-17 beat-down of the San Francisco 49ers.
Most recently, Denver took a comfortable 35-21 win over the San Diego Chargers to increase its lead in the AFC West. The Broncos also have a relatively easy schedule for the remainder of the season, with two matchups against the Oakland Raiders, as well as meetings with the St. Louis Rams and Miami Dolphins.
New England, which is playing its third straight home game, has a bye week coming up after this game. They're also riding a four-game winning streak since losing to the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 4. That winning streak includes huge wins over the Cincinnati Bengals (an easy 43-17 affair) and most recently, the Chicago Bears. That game was a 51-23 win for New England.
The Patriots are still being carried by the defense, even if the offensive explosion against Chicago might lead you to believe otherwise. Specifically, the secondary has been performing incredibly well. New England ranks second in the league with just 210.9 passing yards allowed per game. Peyton Manning's Broncos, conversely, are the No. 3 passing offense in the league with 297.0 passing yards per game.
Broncos vs. Patriots
Here's how you can catch the game on Sunday:
How to Watch
Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxboro, Mass.
When: 4:25 p.m. ET
Announcers: Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson
Online Streaming: Verizon NFL Mobile
The Broncos opened as narrow 4-point favorites despite being on the road, but the line has narrowed slightly. They could be had favored by 3.5 points early on in the week, but most books settled at -3, according to OddsShark.
For more on the Patriots, check out Pats Pulpit.
If you want more on the Broncos, head over to Mile High Report.