Matchup O/U Spread
NYG @ NE 44 NE -17
Weather: 80% chance of precipitation all game long. 19 mph winds.
First and foremost, I generally don’t like putting money on favorites in games with such a high spread. Are the Patriots 17 points better than a rookie QB led Giants team that’s most likely playing without its all pro RB1 and all pro TE1 and definitely without it’s WR1? Yes. Definitely. Anytime we see a good favorite with such a high spread we have to first assess motivation. It’s easy to pick a winner of a game like this, it’s hard to determine if/why a Patriots team would care if it wins by 16 points or if it wins by 18 points. At some point during the game, the Patriots are going to look towards next week and get the backups in.
All that being said, NE to cover the -17 point spread is my first placed bet of the week. High spreads aren’t always stay-aways, they’re good reminders to analyze situations outside of first glance before doubling down on the favorite. Next week, the Patriots play a terrible NYJ squad so they don’t have to look ahead too much in this game. And the Giants play much more beatable opponents in the 1 win ARI Cardinals next week. If any team starts looking ahead and possibly resting key players early, it should be the Giants.
Another angle to use when considering the spread (and useful with DK picks) is determining the implied point totals. In this game the game total projection is 44 and NE is thus projected to win by approximately 17 points. If this is true, then the final score is implied to be NYG 13.5 and NE 30.5 points. Considering the injury plagued NYG offense and the fact that the Patriots have still not allowed
an offensive a passing TD so far this season, it makes sense that the Patriots win margin lies somewhere between 17 and the implied 30.5 point total. This line might move a little bit between now (Tuesday) and game time, but it should be reasonably similar to the current line. With this other perspective in mind, I still feel good about backing them to breeze past the 17 point spread.
Showdown Slate Analysis
League Rankings through Week 5
*Rankings are measured in yards per game
NYG Pass Offense – 14 NE Pass Defense – 1
NYG Rush Offense – 15 NE Rush Defense – 3
NYG Pass Defense – 28 NE Pass Offense – 6
NYG Rush Defense – 23 NE Rush Offense – 21
We’re expecting the Patriots to be in the lead the whole game and as a result we definitely want to get NE running backs in the mix. Rex Burkhead Is likely out again this week, so we’re left with James White, Sony Michel, and Brandon Bolden. We should see similar usage from the NE RB position with a very similar gamescript as we saw last week.. With high winds and rain, short passes to the backs should be the easiest way to move the ball consistently. James White, he’s our man. He’s probably going to captain about half of my lineups. He’s a great pass catcher, consistent in Tom’s passing attack and hasn’t scored a TD since week 2. He and Michel should see a lot of the ball this week. Tom is obviously a great option in every game he plays, especially against a poor defense. I don’t expect the passing yardage to get him to the 300 yard bonus with the poor weather in the mix, but he should have no problem getting the ball to James White for at least a TD, and I’d expect 2 from that combo. Edelman has a Questionable tag but he’s had that multiple weeks in a row now and he should play. Josh Gordon is also questionable but at the time this is written, he’s expected to play as well. WR3 Dorsett sat out last week and I don’t expect him to play this week either. Last but not least is TE Ryan Lacosse. I think he could be a wise sleeper pick, for an offense looking for quick passes in rainy conditions. He played in 73 of 78 possible snaps in Week 5, that certainly bodes well going forward. Lacosse and Boldin are the cheap GPP plays on the Pats side of this game.
The hardest part of the roster building this week is finding the best of the worst on the NYG side to draft. The Giants are going up against the top pass defense in the league and expected to play from behind the whole day. Jon Hilliman and Elijah Penny are the lone healthy options in the NYG backfield, and if we pick either to roster, we’ll want the best pass-catching back on our team: that’s Elijah Penny. The Patriots historically take away their opponents primary option which in this game is…2nd game of the year Golden Tate? WR Darius Slayton might draw interest from drafters based on his 10.2 ppg average but his depth of target is too deep to expect much from him in this rainy game. Against NE, especially on a rainy day, we want someone catching short passes out of the backfield and we want a TE or reliable pass catcher for Jones to dump off to when he gives up on his progressions. It’s hard to measure the reliability of any TE/WR on this team so any play at the position will just be stabs in the dark and we’ll have to rely on hopes and prayers for the play to workout. TE Rhett Ellison isn’t great but he’s got a pulse and Golden Tate may rack up some surprise points with a jet sweep or two as we know they want to get him involved in the offense while they finally have him on the field.
On the NYG side of the ball on this Showdown slate, I like Penny for the short passes out of the backfield, TE Rhett Ellison and a sprinkle of Tate. You can throw QB Daniel Jones into your GPP player pool because he’s gonna have his hands on the ball every play, which is more than any of the other NYG can say.
In summary: I’m picking all patriots with a one-off Giant in the mix because we have to. Get the NE RBs or DEF in your Captain spot.
QB – Tom Brady – 11800
*RB1 – Sony Michel – 7600
*RB2 – James White – 6800
WR1 – Julian Edelman – 10400
WR2 – Josh Gordon – 9000
TE – Ryan Lacosse – 1800 (played on 73 of 78 snaps)
*DEF – NE – 6200
QB – Daniel Jones – 8000
RB2 – Elijah Penny – 3200
TE – Rhett Ellison – 200
*Favorites for the Captain Spot