Thursday Night Football features an AFC East battle as the Buffalo Bills (8-3) take on the New England Patriots (6-5). The Patriots will host this one at Gillette Stadium, with kickoff scheduled for 8:15 pm ET.
After beating the Detroit Lions 28-25 on Thanksgiving, the Bills come into this one having won back-to-back games. In the victory, Josh Allen threw for 253 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. He also led the team in rushing with 78 yards and another score.
For the Patriots, they are trying to bounce back from a 33-26 loss to the Vikings on Thanksgiving. Despite losing, Mac Jones threw for 382 yards and two scores. The ground game struggled, though, as they accounted for just 13 rushes for 45 yards as a team.
The Bills are the slight favorites despite playing on the road. They are -188 to win, while the Patriots’ moneyline sits at +158. The spread features New England +4 (-110), and the over/under for total points is 43.5 (-110).
Bills Look To Take Top Spot In AFC East
The AFC East is arguably the best division in all of football. Every team is over .500, and despite sitting 8-3 overall, the Bills are in second in the division thanks to the Dolphins currently holding the tiebreaker. With a win Thursday, though, the Bills would reclaim the top spot in the division while also creating some separation from New England.
Buffalo currently sits second in the NFL in scoring, averaging 28.1 points per game (24.7 on the road). Their success is in large part due to quarterback Josh Allen.
On the year, Allen has thrown for 3,183 yards, 23 touchdowns, and 11 interceptions. He also leads the team in rushing, going for 561 yards and another five scores.
Allen’s favorite target has been Stefon Diggs. Through 11 games, he has 84 receptions for 1,110 yards and nine receiving touchdowns. He leads the team in all three categories.
Part of Buffalo’s success is also due to a stout defense. They rank fifth in the NFL in scoring defense, allowing just 18.1 points per game to opponents (19.9 on the road).
Bill Belichick Can Never Be Counted Out
While the Patriots might be struggling in the division, it is hard to ever count out a Bill Belichick team. Especially having won three of their last four, the Patriots are a dangerous team, thanks to their defense.
Like the Bills, New England sits in the top 10 in scoring defense. Currently, they rank sixth, allowing 18.4 points per game (15.2 at home).
On the offensive side, Mac Jones leads the team under center. In eight games, he has thrown for 1,768 yards, six touchdowns, and seven interceptions. Ever several inconsistent games, he has played better as of late, with last week’s performance one of his best.
On the ground, Rhamondre Stevenson leads all Patriots’ running backs with 680 yards and four rushing touchdowns. He also helps through the air, as he has 50 receptions for 359 yards and another score.
Take The Patriots And The Points
Looking at the trends, the Bills have gone 4-1 in their last five games against the Patriots, but they have also gone just 1-4 against the spread in their last five games. The UNDER has hit in the last five Buffalo road games.
For the Patriots, they are 6-2 in their last eight games and 5-2 overall in their last seven. In four of the last six games against Buffalo, the total has gone OVER. Even though Buffalo has had success against New England lately, the Patriots are 16-4 in their last 20 home games against the Bills.
Both of these teams have the ability to dominate the other side. Still, it is hard to envision a Bill Belichick defense playing poorly two games in a row, and it wouldn’t be shocking to see this one remain close throughout.
The Bills might ultimately win this one, but expect it to be close throughout. For that reason, take New England and the points.
Take the Patriots +4 (-110